Art to Heal Your Heart IV
I know I must seem like a blissed out granola type in these posts soemtimes. All my attention to spirit and soul and haiku and nature. Make no mistake--I am cranky and crusty and stagger in the morning and hate my coffee but guzzle it and hate my breakfast but eat it and hate feeding the animals but feed them and am not too sure about Oprah, but she's on and I stare at her with my hair standing on end. I don't shave enough. I'm mad at the world. And, though my nature-boy side would like you to think I spend all my days contemplating Basho and Thoreau, and listening to gentle Native American wooden flutes and Judy Collins, the truth is I read too much Charles Bukowski and listen to shrieking music more than tweedle music. I told you in the last posts of Art to Heal Etc. (art toe heel) how much I love "Local Hero." (Have you seen it yet? What are you waiting for!) I have seen "Bullitt" and "The Wild Bunch" and "Vanishing Point" many more times than I have seen "Local Hero." Am I a hypocrite? Maybe. But what I am is a real person. Still, all you need to do is come to our neighborhood and see why I feel like a freak--like Frodo or some twig-munching forest pixie. Not a lot of writers on my street. Not a lot of poetry. It is true about me that I have never had good porn in my bathrooms--I have always had stacks of poetry books. Whatever, he said with a shrug. Go with who you are and it works out.

You need a quiet moment. You need a healing break. If, like me, you turn off the Mastodon, Dir en grey, Fields of the Nephilim, Screaming Blue Messiahs, Blue Cheer, Nikki Sixx, Steve Vai, Joe Satriani, Black Sabbath, King Crimson once in a while, you will want to hear the trees and the wind. Be industrial! Be Nine Inch Nails and Ministry and Skinny Puppy! I often am! But mostly FRONT 242! YES! Like Whitman, we contain multitudes! But heal, heal, breathe y'all. Soul yoga. (I happen to think Front 242's most abrasive work is healing, but you know, it's not for everyone.)

Poetry does it.

Poems will lift you back off the floor.

Next Art Etc. posting will be a list of poetry books I promise you will heal your heart. I guarantee it. I woud buy these for you for Christmas. Except the academics, who loo down on most of the poets I will recommend.

Here's a book to make you love your liufe. Believe it. Get it. You won't be sorry. Put it by your toilet if you have to. Sometimes, toilet time is the closest we have to meditation. I think it works best if you place it by your bed.

Risking Everything: 110 Poems of Love and Revelation, edited by Roger Housden.

If you don't love at least 75% of this book, I will be shocked. If I could, I'd sneak into your room tonight, and before you fell asleep, I'd read you three poems.

As Mary Oliver asks in this fine fine anthology: Listen, are you breathing just a little and calling it a life?

I'm leaving for Bloomington, Indiana in the morning. NPR and a big reading. We bought a blue Ford Escape Hybrid this week. I feel sporty and superior. 34 mpg and 0.09% emissions compared to most new cars' 3.0%. It has Sirius radio built in, so we can listen to the Hair Metal cchannel or the Elvis channel or the BBC. I can go to Denver on a tank of gas. Ah.... My apocalypse car. I can flee the Chicago holocaust, when the zombies walk and the bombs go off, in my hybrid! I'll take Risking it All with me when I flee. The hybrid has a leaf on the side to let people know it's green. Even the interior materials are recycled. I'll be tooling along in the Escape--Chayo, in her inimitable way, has named it: The Ice Mountain. Leave it to the kid to make my SUV into a Han-shan poem.

Cars to Heal Your Heart. Healing comes in so many forms. You know how it heals? It makes you smile.

My car and my book are almost as good as my neighborhood turkey.


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