so the thing is, i was sad for a month. it was after all the gunshots and explosions, just because for once a thing like that happened exactly where i was walking a month before. exactly where i was walking when i felt The Big give me a cardigan – fluffy and white and with pearled buttons and smelling like soap even though it was abandoned with trash on the street. i picked it up and grinned and also wild tooth smiled up to the blue paris sky, The Big for once not even hiding up there.
but then, same street, bombs go off. so yeah, i got all sad. read some camus and got a bit excited realising i could keep protagonists alive by not reading the end of books, but then the sad was still right there, winding all the way through every single thought.
i nearly let it wash away, the deep sad, with trips to the river, and nearly finding my mindset again of – some things you can’t understand, just follow your path, just enjoy the cardigans left for you, just let love enter when it’s falling your way – but then a trip to the hospital put me back in the place where actually nothing makes sense.
nick is in the other room making singing tracks for a new pond album. joni and tera played one of the best shows i’ve ever seen, at my friend’s dad’s surprise viking party where i felt the world become better and also was crying as they played and spiritual energy pulsed through me as we sat on the floorboards of an enormous floreat home with this incongruous sound invited there as entertainment. and we had a show last night on a jetty where me nick, pete and lucas swam across to the far side of the shore to explore the “mangrove swamp” next to “shit creek”, and then an armada of friends came over on kayaks, matt and mei and amber bateup and ju and all the rest, and even nigel from soup kitchen came to the show and played songs, and mladen sang the most beautifully he ever has, as the sun went right down low and everything was pink and purple or a mangrove swamp or mladen’s hair and the microphone was rigged carefully to an amp and a beer carton seeing as hooking it through mladen’s jumper, tied on to a kayak paddle, wedged upward into a crack in the beams of the jetty didn’t work in the end. all these things, before the deep sadness washed away, couldn’t have had their full effect, because the mind went to the same place “it’s unfair”, and to the same place, “maybe someone will come and shoot us all up, big holes into us that are big enough to go right through the other side” etc.
see, i picked up my friend from a drug den. i knew it was a drug den because no-one had watered the plants. when you get on meth, plants are the first thing to go. you forget you’re addicted to air too, and that you need those plants. they wither away in their rough drying dirt as you head out to someone’s shed to steal bikes, a mirror, some guitar cases, some guitar pedals, in the hope of using some (never going to happen) and selling some (just might happen) because music things have now become money things and plants won’t be watered as they don’t grow notes, coins, or better still – more meth.
i was in the room with my friend just now – not on meth so she waters at least twice a week – and i said to her “i think you’re a healer.” she told me “i think everyone is a healer. it’s just to listen to the body, feel, not think” (but in a french voice). she was right, but the thing that nearly made me lose my hope was being in the hospital car park.
see, i picked my friend up from the drug den. first i stood in the doorway invited in but not invited in, and she went to “collect some things” and went into the kitchen and came back out wiping blood from the inside of her arm. you know that bit – classic part of the body – a place i’d like to get kissed first if i ever get kissed again. that delicate crease inside the elbow (touch it now. let’s do it together. kiss it.)
that was real sad, seeing that blood get wiped, little crystals oozing out with the blood. i try to make it into something nice – “crystals oozing”, but at some point this isn’t possible. in the hospital carpark i saw my friend’s eyes change, from normal coloured to black coloured, and back again. i’d never seen that until the hospital night, and i hope you never do. and then we were there til 3am, the carpark, the hospital, the ER the toilets, the front verandah, all the boring places to watch your friend falling away from life right there next to you. and all the time the thought that it could be anyone but it should be no-one.
see, it’s never just a question of choice and substance, and this is the thing that plunged me into that deep river for a month. why does my friend do that? a million reasons flowing all over her from all time leading to that point, and then one tiny tiny mini choice reason at the end. why do people shoot each other? a million reasons flowing all over them from all time leading to that point, and then one tiny tiny mini choice reason at the end. and that big river flow seemed also to be connected to me, and everyone else, as it is.
at the Unknown Mortal Orchestra concert i took one picture. i held up the plastic cup i got my wine in, over the face of the singer, and the title of the picture in my mind was “what will last longer: this plastic cup or u.m.o?” the answer of course is already in their band name.
meaningless, meaningless, plastic from ancient oil, dug up and carrying liquid to us for some tiny moment and then lasting forever on a junk heap, a trail of destruction in its wake, tiny plastic almost immortal vessel.
but yeah, now it’s christmas, and time to drag yourself out of the river called “Truly, Life is Unfair, Meaningless, and Plagued by Arms, Drugs and Plastic, and You, Tiny Person Are Swimming With That Same Current Even When You Wish You Weren’t”. time to drag yourself up on the jetty to dry out and find a cheap kayak on gumtree, and then get back in but this time on top.