Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The Inner-View. 5 Minutes. One Question.

Tuesday Evening, IV staffers were challenged by professional game-ers Stephen and Jude Mason to participate in the meaning-making sport known as Apples To Apples. As aspiring followers of high-stake-surrealism, we were ready to make non-sense one bite at a time. Of course, all this ridiculousness begs the question:

IV: What happens when one plays Apples to Apples?

SM: The not obvious becomes the obvious.

The Inner-View. 5 Minutes. One Question.

In love we're all the same
We're walking down an empty street
Tonight and every night...
Let's go walking down this empty street
Let's walk in the cool evening light
Wrong or right
Be at my side

The Blue Nile, Downtown Lights

So tonight The Blue Nile is playing. Children are watching Eddie Murphy in some new movie that isn't as wonderful as Bowfinger. The cups are filled with box wine kicks. Author and stand-up wordsmith, David Dark, is washing dishes. The inner-view begins.

IV: Alright... as we are comically quotidian at the moment, let's talk about Romance. What do you make of it?

DD: I want everyone to have it. I think of Portia in The Merchant of Venice when she told Bassanio that his gaze divided her heart, giving one half to him and the other, if it's still hers, also his. I think too of the tale Dmitri told his brother Alyosha (in Brothers Karamazov) of the night Katerina Ivanovna came to him, thanking him for sparing her drunken father some form of debtor's indignity by offering him her body. He was so moved by her beauty and nobility that, contrary to his usual pattern, he refused her offer. After she left, he stood there amazed at himself, overwhelmed at their exchange and so doubtful that he would obtain such heights of ecstasy again that he drew his sword and, by his account, came close to impaling himself. I think of something like the desire to pour your own life into what you take to be the depths of another human being. This is what comes to my mind when I think of romance.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Live in The Along

Speech to the Young: Speech to the Progress-Toward

Say to them,
Say to the down-keepers,
The sunslappers,
The self-soilers,
The harmony-hushers,
“even if you are not ready for day
it cannot always be night.”
You will be right.
For that is the hard home-run.

Live not for battles won.
Live not for the-end-of-the-song.
Live in the along.

Gwendolyn Brooks

Monday, September 12, 2011

The Inner-View. 5 Minutes. One Question.

It was only a matter of time before IV resident artists Sam and Peter Dark were called upon to participate in The Inner-View's whimmy blog sport. It happened today. It should be noted that, as artists do, Sam and Peter expanded the boundary-ed playing field of the current system... and begged a second question.

IV: If you could live in any place, with any kind of people, where would it be?

Sam: I would live with the Vikings because they eat a lot of meat. I really want to be a guy who hunts for animals. I love them.

IV: Can you love them and kill them?

Sam: Isn't it like thanking them?

Peter: Like the old man who made a fire and the rabbit saw him starvin' and stuff. The rabbit jumped himself into the fire so the man could eat him.

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Ah Forget It!

Ah Forget It! (A response to Ted Hoagland's "Big Grab")

Are you kidding?
I'm negotiating with surrealism,
Trying to take it into me,
Trying to cuddle it,
Make it lovely,
Make it love me.

--Sarah Masen

Friday, September 02, 2011

The Ritual of Play

This weekend concludes Sarah's tenure as Children's Education Director at DPC. You'll understand that the title conferred three years ago didn't mark the beginning of her devotion of energies in this direction anymore than handing it over to the wonderful and inspiring Lenae Chambers marks the end, but this is the conclusion of a season in which Sarah has worked tirelessly at showing, instructing, dreaming, and crying out loud within a certain gap ("Adults! Receive the poetic witness of our children! Hear and see and experience!" and "Children. Here's what we're trying to do around here. Or at least, here's what we think we're doing. What do you guys think?"). She has performed the work awesomely and intensely and will now doubtless have at it some more as she returns to other mediums and other spaces. Perhaps I can get her to reflect on it all on the blog at some point, but she's lately more committed to the recent innerview series. Typical.
I give you the description for Saturday's goings-on, and invite you to come on out:
Everyday Rituals, Everyday Materials, Everyday Play
The youth of Downtown Presbyterian Church are creating again for the sixth summer running. Directed by Sarah Dark and Lenae Chambers, and with the help of local artists –Beth Gilmore, Elizabeth Streight,and Todd Greene- this year the youth are exploring the rituals they practice at home and in church. They have explored the rituals Presbyterians practice, such as baptism and Eucharist, as well as the mundane ritual of teeth brushing and eating. The art show, dubbed The Ritual of Play, will display art based on repetition. Edward, 9, explained the process of ritual in these words: “you have to have the freedom to do it, and you have to do it to know it.” Interactive stations will allow all to participate in daily rituals such as washing, eating, and writing. All materials used to create this show are found, reclaimed, or reused items. Nothing was purchased this year. The show will open Saturday, September 3, 2011 in DPC’s fellowship hall at 6pm.

Thursday, September 01, 2011

The Inner-View. 5 minutes. One question.

Oh Mom, I wonder when I'll be waking
It's just that there's so much to do and
I'm tired of sleeping
Suzanne Vega, Tired of Sleeping

Suzanne Vega is played often in our house. "Tired of Sleeping" is a particular favorite of IV staff, Dorothy Dark, and on the surface fits her owl-like tendency to "get this party started" when the older staff are ready for "zzzz"s. Surface aside, I was moved to read that the song came from a dream Vega had in which "the kids are playing in pennies" line was actually "the kids are begging for God". Out of the mad jungle mass of music played in our house, "Tired of Sleeping" came to mind today when I found myself interviewed by new friend Maeve. Maeve is a 2 year old Socratic philosopher who has recently moved to Nashville from Chicago, IL. I think there is a connection between the song and her questions. Help me mine it out. Consider yourself interviewed.

Maeve: Are you, you? A grown up?

IV: Yes. Are you going to be a grown up?

Maeve: No. I am going to be a little girl.