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A Poem Wants a Poem

January 14

Nearly forty years ago, I had dream. In the dream, I was leafing

through Jung’s Memories, Dreams, Reflections. A piece of paper

fell out and on it was written, poem-like

A poem wants a poem

A dream wants a dream

This little dream has become the animating spirit of my work

ever since.

It is always a deep pleasure to me when someone responds to

one of my dreams or poems with a dream or poem of their own.

In response to my recent poem, “How the War on Reality Ended,”

my long-time friend Tony Albino sent me this poem.

——————————————————————————-

There once was a girl named Alice,

A comely thing who befriended birds

And trees and once, a rabbit without malice.

For she knew what needed to be known,

That plumbing life’s depths was a challenge

To understand, to grasp, to measure one’s soul,

Not in terms of success or failure or even balance

But against the one whose blood was carried in a chalice.

Content with silence, she spoke to none.

A wave and a smile but nothing more.

At a hilltop she’d stare wide-eyed at the sun.

Letting it pour a spreading kindness,

a warmth she hoped would keep her from being shunned

by all those who thought they knew her ways, her thoughts,

but if they really found a way to know her they’d be stunned

to discover how easy their knowledge could be undone.

She spoke water to rivers, wind to trees

and once while whispering to a flower

she gave directions to a troop of passing fleas,

who danced and twirled at being acknowledged

by this girl whose voice floated like a midsummer’s breeze

full of spice and song and hints of saffron

that could make any who were ill at ease and hard to please

smile at nothing and laugh at anything, even their knees.

But deep within was a discontent

that slid as if lying loose on a ship

unbound and unmoored, a shadowy vagrant

whose sudden shift would throw her off course

and into a fog-bank of torment,

her soul close-hauling a buffeting wild sea

whose dark intent threatened to consume and disorient

her every attempt to stay unencumbered and silent.

How the War on Reality Ended

January 11

 

There is no one left to tell
How it all came crashing down
There is no one left to hear
How no one stopped the clown

The tipping point was clear
But what to do was not
Dire warnings were sounded
But all declared unfounded

Human hubris knew no limit
There was no app for that
Reality came knocking
And knocked humanity flat

Humans had a good run
Yes they did, they did
But so much for that
Time for something else

******************************
I’ve recorded this, and wondering if hearing it adds anything. As most all poets note, a poem must be heard for it to reach its proper depth. Here’s a link:

http://ralockhart.com/WP/HowWarOnRealityEnded.wav

“Do not follow the path of the hypotenuse”

December 29

“Do not follow the path of the hypotenuse”

After more than five decades of working with dreams, I find that more and more dreams are “voice” dreams, that is, without any imagery, only an auditory voice, most often male, but female too. These dreams are often oracular in nature and feeling, with the expression not to be doubted–even if it is not immediately understood. Sometimes, the voice content takes on the character of a simple instruction: “Look for three pennies in the gutter.” I do not ignore voice dreams and make every effort to listen and attend to these instantiations of what feels like wisdom quite beyond any sense of my consciousness. So I look out for the pennies in the gutter. I do not find them in a gutter but in a rain puddle outside the stairs leading into a local drug store. Three bright and shiny pennies. In a future post I’ll comment more on the significance of such synchronicity and why synchronicities are “paths.”

A rather gruff voice announces, “Do not follow the path of the hypotenuse.” When I wrote the dream down, I also drew a right triangle. I looked at the hypotenuse and noted that it is the shortest distance between the two extreme points, or, as is usually said, the longest side of a right triangle. I see two paths: the hypotenuse path and the “angle” path as two ways to reach the “end” point. I spontaneously think of the hypotenuse path as “cutting corners,” as it would be traversing the straight and narrow. Bachelard’s delicious reverie on corners comes to mind, as does my own writing on the goddess of corners: Angerona. She is also the goddess of silence and the suffering of silence. I explored many aspects of Angerona in my essay, “Psyche in Hiding,” which is available in Words As Eggs. Her etymology derives from angles. To “be cornered” gives us a sense of why the path of suffering is rejected in favor of the straight and narrow. But fate always finds a way to corner us, and now, even our whole species is cornered, and faced with the suffering of extinction. Who wants to go there? But for me, if I follow the oracular voice, I must go there, I must not cut corners, must reject the straight and narrow, and seek out some way to “be with” what now seems an inevitability.

Angerona’s statue is hidden away in the Sacellum Volupiae, the Roman Sanctuary of Pleasure. How does one find pleasure in suffering? This seems related to my dream of celebrating the final Raganrök. These could be interpreted as pathological tendencies, but I think something deeper is at work: a true facing of what’s coming. In the next post I’ll take this up more directly.

Human Extinction

December 17

Overview of the rapid approach of human extinction

The process that moots everything is being ignored by most. Here is a good overview:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z5CrUgBn3uM
How to relate to this is now every person’s greatest challenge.

Stepping into a Forest of Dreams

December 4

There was no path to step from

Going forward the only choice

Stepping into a forest of dreams

Each tree a separate dream

Each of different type, size, shape

The forest floor was solid

But crystal clear

Revealing dream roots

All intertwining, all moving, all alive

Connecting with neighbors near and far

It was not a silent forest

But I cannot say what I heard

Except that it pulled me in

For further secrets further on

—-

From Dreamwork Poems 2017

A Most Efficient Parasite

December 1

It begins with cells from the atmosphere taking up residence in the host’s blood stream. These cells begin to proliferate and develop tubal extensions that connect aggregates of cells. Feeding off the host’s blood is then transmitted through these tubes to develop a networking of these aggregates. They begin to infiltrate the host’s muscle and this releases chemicals which infiltrate the host’s brain. This causes the host to leave its home colony, to travel up a nearby plant stem and at precisely 25 centimeters, the host stops, takes the plant’s main vein into its mandible, clenches tightly so that the plant’s juices begin to flow. This grip on the plant vein becomes permanent and the ant host is now unmoving. Inside the ant, the parasite begins to form a kind of spear that goes through the ant’s head. A bulbous head develops on this spear and eventually bursts, pouring a large number of cellular spores onto the ant colony and its trails below. This ensures the infection of many more hosts.

This parasite is known as Ophiocordyceps unilateralis. The etymology refers to “club headed snake.” It is commonly known as the “Zombie” parasite, as it is completely takes over any independent function of the ant. It is a form of parasitic fungus and has been known to completely destroy ant colonies.

In a previous post on parasites (see October 4), I mentioned the use of biological realities as a form of “analogical” research in exploring the psychological and cyberlogical relevance of these biological “models.” I will explore this relevance in a subsequent post. In the meantime…think about it.

The Dreamgourd and the I Ching

November 27

A Note on Casting the Dreamstones…

My description of the casting of the stones and the layout pictured may have given an inaccurate impression as to the exact method of casting the dreamstones. It is important that each draw from the dreamgourd be from a full set of 16 stones. Only in this way will each element of the casting be completely random. The illustration may have given the impression that the stones are laid out in the pattern shown as they are drawn. This is not correct. The illustration was “posed” following the casting of the stones. To cast the stones properly, take out the first stone. This is the lower trigram. Jot down on the dream page or in your notebook the stone that was cast. Then replace that stone in the dreamgourd. Now draw out a second stone. This is the upper trigram. Note it and then replace it as well. Each subsequent drawing (for determining the line state) requires the dreamgourd to be full before the next draw is made. After this procedure, I like to lay out the stones in the manner of the illustration and to spend time reflecting on the stones—particularly before launching into the work on the I Ching hexagram resulting from the cast.

Dreamgourd pictures

This picture shows the Dreamgourd. The color is close to what it was in the dream.
What is a gourd? A gourd is the fruit of a climbing or trailing plant similar to the pumpkin, squash and cucumber. Typically the rind of this fruit is hard and when the fruit is dried and the interior is hollowed out, the gourd can be made into a variety of useful objects, such as a drinking bowl for water or wine, or a musical instrument, or even a replacement for bone (as in the skull) as was common in Neolithic time. The word derives from the Latin cucurbita, which bears the root image of “cup.” Even two-thousand years ago, the word also carried the slang connatation of “blockhead,” which we see surviving in modern times as in the expression to be “out of one’s gourd,” an image of craziness or madness. The gourd was the first plant domesticated by early humans and used long before clay or stone. Every gourd is “unique” in shape and one of nature’s outstanding spontaneous feminine art forms.
The picture shows the two halves of the Dreamgourd. The main bowl holds the Dreamstones, and the smaller bowl holds the dream written out on a piece of handmade paper, scrolled and tied. Consulting the I Ching oracle is a mantic ritual and the more one partakes in the ritual aspect the more one will be “prepared” to reach deeply into the result of the casting of the stones. Following tradition, when one consults the I Ching, one should face south leaving the oracle itself facing north as befits something revered.
Part of the ritual process involves what I call the “bowl of imagination.” It is important to fill the bowl of imagination with the dream, just as the smaller gourd bowl is filled with its written version and the larger gourd bowl is filled with the stones. Only when the dream fills the imaginal vessal should the first two stones be drawn to create the hexagram.

The picture shows the results of drawing out the first two stones to form the lower and the upper trigrams. This hexagram is then recorded on the written dream. The stones are then drawn in turn to determine whether the line is a fixed or changing line. The result is recorded on the written dream. As can be seen, this first casting resulted in hexagram 51, in which the lower and upper trigrams are the same: Zhen, which means “shock” and is symbolized by thunder, in this case, thunder above and thunder below.

The changing lines bring forth the hexagram 42, Yi, meaning “profit,” “benefit,” “increase.” The resulting hexagram is formed from the lower trigam of Zhen, “thunder,” and the upper trigram Xun, “wind.”

An Essential Tool for the Dark Days Ahead

November 26

https://goo.gl/eJr5yn

 

 

The Reality of Scientific Mythology

November 23

A Rich Resource I Recommend with Enthusiasm

As science has developed is has increasingly severed itself from its mythic roots and its mythic imagination. The result is that science in one form or another has done great damage to the world, its animals, its people–all of life. Science does not admit this, but it is everywhere apparent. What is the proposed solution to the world’s problems? More of the same science. This has a touch of insanity about it, as Einstein knew.

Dr. Leslie Emery has taken on the challenge of this state of affairs and is hard at work reconnecting science to its lost mythic imagination. His website is a rich resource for delving into the depths of this problem. Few seem to realize the necessity of bringing current science into a reconnection with its rhizomic roots.

Take some time and explore http://www.scientificmythology.net

The Developing Tripod

November 22

A tripod is a strong structure. The current tripod that is being established consists of three legs: government suppression, corporate power, and political corruption. The main bulwark against government suppression is an independent judiciary, hence, the current rush to fill the courts with compromised judges. The main bulwark against corporate power is governmental regulation, hence the current dismantling of all government regulation. The main bulwark against political corruption, is an independent justice department, hence the attacks on the department and the effort to eliminate “independence.” So far, the Mueller investigation has not been compromised.

All tripods are for a purpose. A tripod holds the camera. A tripod enables one to milk the cow. The developing tripod has not yet been fully established and may yet be stopped. But it has a definite purpose. That purpose is in plain sight.