Disruptive Juxtaposition

Saturday, October 07, 2006

First stanza of "Mark Twain's Burglars"

bumbled & played an unplanned song of candleabra maraca,

arias of stubbed toes, comic opera sobbing when they were caught

in the lines of the broadsheet the Hannibal news drew up when

its best son & curmudgeon managed a laugh at his thieves' expense,

the notice to any subsequent burglar a helpful how-to - "The china's beside

that thing by the entryway, chiffonier I think they call it,

pergola or something like that" - as though he had affably

dealt with the theft of his mind, he gave crooks green lights

& couldn't find the right words - "Please don't make noise as you leave,

& help yourself to a kitten -

Yours sincerely,

M. Twain",

Friday, October 06, 2006

On rain in Vegas

The land's so unaccustomed to rain that the jagged hills which hem in Vegas itself and its infinite suburbs are washed clean of months of dust. When a shower passes, the mountains hold forth with profound brick reds and deep purples everyone had forgotten were there. The smell of galoshes and puddles, which tended to be fleeting in my younger days (as though the darker the weather was back then, the more it tends to glow today), is everywhere: there's nowhere for the water to drain off to, and because the earth is always warm the rain, once it touches down, spreads that damp metallic scent all over the valley.

Yesterday: Miles Davis's Kind of Blue, a cinnamon candle, and missing someone (you know who you are) all afternoon. The plan for today: the wonderful same.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Marketing isn't all bad

The Hold Steady's new album Boys and Girls in America. The press this release is winning is legitimately won. Comparisons to Bruce Springsteen are apt. Piano sales floors are filling up with scruffy kids wearing thick-rimmed glasses and Chuck Taylors, all of them equal parts cynic and idealist.