Tag Archives: misinterpretation


I would un-Crowley Rabelais
to taste, unplagiarized
the simple, yet sarcastic truths
that Aleister disguised:

that man, if left the sole device
of acting with free will
would, after some adjustment,
neither harm, debase or kill

but would instead seek Beauty, Truth,
and other worthy aims
eschewing constant upmanship
and endless win-lose games,

learning to laugh, first, at one’s self,
to recognize, and know,
that wisdom’s parent is compassion
freed from the ego.

I wonder, sometimes, why so few
who hunger after power
spend all their time out of control
and memorize for hours

arcane instructions, complex spells,
and pompous, trumped up rites,
the rule of mankind, not themselves,
the target in their sights.

Oh, Rabelais, your rapier wit
so sadly has been turned
into a comedy for fools,
and nothing has been learned.

06 MAY 2005

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Kerrying the Right Message?

Here’s a thought I had in response to a recent post on the KerryNewOrleans group at Yahoo:

> anyone have a monthly meeting or something?
> I moved here last year, I now it is Hot here until election day, but we
> are gonna do a rally or something, right?
> Who wants to go to the Quarter w/ me and explain Bush to tourists?

While I admire your enthusiasm, this plan of action sounds to me a bit like Jehovah’s Witnesses canvassing neighborhoods they don’t live in. Why start with tourists? Starting with your own neighbors, and even your own family might be time better spent, or getting residents of Orleans Parish nominally interested in the issues (although a historically Democratic zone, voter turnout is abyssmally low – people don’t make the effort to get to the polls if there is any kind of deterrent, even a slight drizzle). That kind of confrontation requires a lot more fortitude than attempting to convert people you don’t know, though.

What exactly are you hoping to explain, by the way? The problem, or the solution?

As for rallies, they are great for building team morale and making a show of support, but the problem is not with the people who attend rallies (on either side), because at least those people are INVOLVED. The problem is with people who really don’t give a damn one way or the other, or like the candidate they ultimately choose for reasons they assume are right because no one has ever asked them, in person, to think about them.

Remember, if you fight by bashing your enemy, you’re not making a difference. You’re endorsing their tactics; and the medium IS the message.

What a field day for the heat / A thousand people in the streets / Singing songs, and a-carryin’ signs / Most just say, “Hooray for our side”

— Steven Stills, from For What It’s Worth

Or something like that.



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Building Around a Thing

“I know it when I see it,” said the man
who vainly tried conveying truth to friends.
“When it is absent, the space that it leaves
unfilled describes it clearly, end to end;

and though there are no words to put it plain,
nor etchings I could render without flaw,
there is a quality about a thing
that you would grasp at once, if you just saw.”

“Alas,” replied one listener, “when you speak,
I can appreciate your sense of it;
it vibrates through your being with each word,
as if using yourself as conduit;

but sadly, in the context of your speech,
the futile nature of your quest is seen –
to clothe in logic’s frame that beyond reach
one must assume a great deal in between.”

“And, too,” answered another, “there is this:
that beauty is too frequently construed
to be only one aspect of the whole:
the menu, presentation, or the food;

but when it crosses our familiar lines
and cannot be contained in narrow themes,
the most common reaction is disdain.
We dare not seek for substance in our dreams

beyond those limits, set and firm, agreed
by all to guide where useful knowledge ends.
True, by this means we seem to guarantee
that we are not evolving.” “It depends,”

the first man answered, holding up a rose.
“There are some constants, in spite of our toil
to obfuscate our instinct’s depth of field.
At some point, reason’s gifts begin to spoil

and eat away at simple, common joy.
We lose that sense of awe, and we are doomed
to live as if machines, devoid of cause,
the boxes that we build ourselves, our tombs.

23 APR 2004

When I am working on a problem
I never think about beauty.
I only think about
how to solve the problem.
But when I have finished;
if the solution is not beautiful;
I know it is wrong.

— Buckminster Fuller (1895-1983)

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Hanging Prayer Flags

You can’t hang those outside our house, she said,
looking at the string of fifteen small flags
that I carefully unrolled and held out,
stretched to full arms length across my big chest –

it will look like an all-night Buddhist pub –
and everyone who passes by will stop
at all hours for a cup of jasmine tea;
or, she said low, those Monte Carlo boys

seeing blue and red colors in the breeze
will cross the street, seeing competition
for the mind-altering stuff they pander,
and maybe bust a cap in someone’s ass.
I laughed. The mind of a fifteen year old
is quite a strange place to visit, sometimes.

06 JUL 2003

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