COLUMNS

  • SUNRISE: January 11, 2018

    MERCURY ENTERED CAPRICORN nine minutes past midnight EST. Goodbye purple prose.

    The Moon is void-of-course in Scorpio from 9:54 AM EST today till she enters Sagittarius 2:05 AM EST tomorrow morning.

    It takes just about twenty-eight days for the Moon to complete her orbit around Earth. She spends about two, two and a half days in each sign of the Zodiac. You know this, but I’ll remind you anyway: She pulls the tides and the water in your body; seeds turn with her, whether in your belly or in the ground. Because she has no light of her own (but rather reflects the Sun’s light) and because she’s just

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  • SUNRISE: January 10, 2018

    IT OCCURRED TO ME YESTERDAY the cosmos might be too wide for a proper writer’s slender gift: the duty one has to the ever-neglected miniscule majesties and tragedies of Earth stuff. We are supposed to know ourselves. We are supposed to study each other.

    Which is why I had always been reluctant to apply myself as a writer of prose, which I also don’t officially consider myself to be, to matters heavenly. I have adopted this affected tone because it has just now come naturally to me. Writing so well as to write almost purposefully badly.

    Some part of me thinks she can fatten certain wraithlike and

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  • SUNRISE: January 9, 2018

    JANUARY

                January long light

                Janus     I see you

                God of locks and doorways

     

                two-faced looking in Capricorn

                Capricorn like the snowy owl

                            irruption

     

                We fear heavy body collisions

                January     time of doors

                time looking back on itself

                            God of gates

                            spelt and salt

                They say when you

                walk through a door

                you can forget what

                            you came for

    –Hoa Nguyen, VIOLET ENERGY INGOTS  (Wave Books,

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  • SUNRISE: January 8, 2018

    ON FRIDAY IT HAPPENED that a few of my natal chart clients were in Dublin, & just as I was finishing a Skype with the last one, an Irish director walked in off the plane & into the house where I work. He took a nap in an efficiency apartment adjacent to my workroom, then commenced rehearsing a Yeats play with a troupe of actors in the salon upstairs. I had no idea this would be happening. That’s the kind of house this is. It might be one of the last genuinely “bohemian” households in Manhattan. Thespians and poets are always climbing up and down the stairs, nurturing and collaborating on difficult

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  • SUNRISE: January 7, 2018

    Democracy isn’t efficient, and the only politics I recognize lies

    between us, undefined, requiring no casting of votes. It asks that we

    admit we’re both present, all present, in the same multiform space—

    within me or you. I would never ask you to follow me; I will never

    acknowledge a leader. I am my president. But also, I am

    everyone, trying to be with you, because I exist, and always have
    .

    —Alice Notley, “Two of Swords,” p6. Certain Magical Acts. Penguin, New York: 2016.

    VERY STABLE GENIUS: It’s kind of beautiful. I mean, the mental health industry is pretty insane too. This is shadow

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  • SUNRISE: January 6, 2018

    A MEATHEAD CARTEL LORD walks into an S&M brothel with a genial jetsetting billionaire. The brothel is “over the border” in some more lawless territory and it has a hardcore; excellent reputation. The meathead is well-known there, they treat him like royalty, call him by pet names, mix his favorite cocktails; the billionaire might have been there once or twice, but he travels so much he can’t say exactly when. The Brothel’s Yelp reviews are all like “Holy fuck” and “I’ll never be the same again.” This is a fairly new bromance, but thoroughly in the old odd couple buddy flick tradition. The

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  • SUNRISE: January 5, 2018

    I’VE LISTENED TO THIS POEM a couple hundred times. And read it over & over too. I never get used to it.

    It induces a kind of hypnosis; a lucidity on the edge of total oblivion. It’s not an easy effect to describe; I think it has to do with magic; I think it casts and means to cast a spell. And yet it is descriptive, direct, etched, and bright, like the plain narration of a thousand-year hallucination, like the Wikipedia entry for a dream.

    Peacocks started showing up in my life in the summer of 2013. How do I explain “showing up”? All of a sudden I was seeing them, like they were everywhere in

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  • SUNRISE: January 4, 2018

    Behold!

    Whose multitudes are these?

    The children of whose turbaned seas,

    Or what Circassian land?

    —Emily Dickinson

    EMILY’S “TURBANED SEAS” have been roaring through me lately. I think because the thought of binding up the ocean is the kind of coil of imagination that seldom happens outside childhood and picture books—and so it calls to me, but also because it has been so cold in New York that when I close my eyes I see oceans roped in white ice, turbaned, as it were, bound up in some mystic freeze.

    But it’s also, and possibly mainly, because just after the solstice I started doing

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  • SUNRISE: January 3, 2018

    MORE BAD and really good (John Giorno)

     

    There was a lot more than this the other night at The Poetry Project: CAConrad’s poem about human pelts; Eileen Myles, our genial dean in a twenty-gallon hat; Patricia Spears Jones’s stately sequence full of well-spaced air; Pierre Joris & Nicole Peyrafitte doing something confusing and sexy and great wherein Nicole ate black chalk & drew a red line down the center of her face etc; a dancer with an edible costume whose existential hunger turned out to resonate as basically the predicament of everybody in the room; Penny Arcade in the sovereignty of herself

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  • SUNRISE: January 2, 2018

    Born without distinction & alone as was proper, emptied, the insides of your emptiness all polished & shining

    Even having shared an egg conserving a certain apparent boundary

    Human pelts meow like Conrad said

    Dividing a truth from its advertisement

    Or your constellation from the frothing lip of the beer

    Brans & ryes, seriously any or all the old ways, all the exhausted weights & measures

    Intoxicants like air & light a silvery effluent that hardens into frost on uncollected garbage

    Alien machinery laying down the wheat

    A pyramid of norms

    Hippocratic clouds advancing new textures of hair and

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  • SUNRISE: January 1, 2018

    THE VEINS on the backs of her hands were raised and blue. To attain raised veins on the arms and hands. It seemed slender and remote; the prize of cruelty withstood; it had charisma. She was stretching her hands across an octave of piano keys or holding a menthol cigarette. No she was typing on a keyboard with the cigarette in her mouth. Blue smoke over the dining room table, trees out the window, the mound below her thumb: muscular, not to be argued with; she is waving a hard peach around, talking. The authority and relaxation of a grown person at her pleasure. Holding sour fruit is her

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  • On the Ground: Saskatoon

    THE REMAI MODERN opened on October 21 in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. A city of 250,000 founded as a dry temperance colony, supported by stores of potash and oil, and frequented by hobby hunters dispersing into the great Canadian prairies, Saskatoon would seem an unlikely place for a 130,000-square-foot beacon to modern and contemporary art. While a precirculated press release notes that its “launch aligns with the international trend of world-class museums opening in unexpected destinations”—boilerplate become gospel in the first weekend’s official ceremonies—there is much that such an

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