Songs of Blessed Singing

Songs of Blessed Singing

What songs
of the bleeding heart
can we sing this night ?
Perhaps a self-soothing hum
is  preferable ,
a quiet moaning may even do.
Perhaps a ring
of the phone ,
or a tweet ,
will intercept
the thermodynamics
of this song ,
and for one
distracted moment
curtail some of that bleeding.

Alternatives to Depression- Dory Previn’s “20 Mile Zone”


Twenty-Mile Zone
By Dory Previn

I was riding in my car
Screaming at the night
Screaming at the dark
Screaming at fright
I wasn’t doing nothing
Just drive about
Screaming at the dark
Letting it out
That’s all I was doing
Just letting it out

Well along comes a motorcycle
Very much to my surprise
I said officer was I speeding
I couldn’t see his eyes
He said no you weren’t speeding
And he felt where his gun was hung
He said lady you were screaming
At the top of your lung
And you were
Doing it along
You were doing it alone
You were screaming in your car
In a twenty-mile zone
You were doing it alone
You were doing it alone
You were screaming

I said I’ll roll up all my windows
Don’t want to disturb the peace
I’m just a creature
Who is looking
For a little release
I said
And what’s so wrong with screaming
Don’t you do it at your games
When the quarterback
Breaks an elbow
When the boxer beats and maims
But you were
Doing it alone
You were doing it alone
You were screaming in your car
In a twenty-mile zone
You were doing it alone
You were doing it alone
You were screaming

I said animals roar
When they feel like
Why can’t we do that too
Instead of screaming
Banzai baby
In the war in the human zoo

He said I got to take you in now
Follow me right behind
And let’s have no more screaming
Like you’re out of your mind
So he climbed aboard his cycle
And his red-eyed headlight beamed
And his motor started spinning
And his siren screamed

He was doing it alone
He was doing it alone
He was screaming on his bike
In a twenty-mile zone
He was doing it alone
He was doing it alone
He was screaming
I was doing it alone
I was doing it alone
I was screaming in my car
In a twenty-mile zone
I was doing it alone
I was doing it alone
I was screaming
We were doing it together
We were doing it together
We were screaming at the dark
In a twenty-mile zone
We were doing it together
We were doing it together
We were screaming
We were doing it together
We were doing it
In a twenty-mile zone

The Law

The Law

The shape of things
to come ,
On the boulevards ,
the shape of spring .
Sitting on rotund
Lilac divans
laws are made
and In all
these  new beginnings
the old ones fade .
plexi steel
stiletto heel
Silver leather
Herald the new
and latest weather
A crop of  percussive songs ,
electronic tweet
sweet canaries
of the past repeat
will it last
The  axe is falling
Reapers calling .
The ding dong
of the door sounds
Then the
calls are made
to the elegance
of ladies
and to all the
ineptitudes of men .
Give me the law
Baby ..I need it.
Need it in the now .
Need it over again .

The Great Gatsby. Why ?


The Great Gatsby. Why ?

The Great Gatsby Why ?

My guts were eating at me tonight . It was Just one of those nights that compelled me to make a choice .
The choice was between either heading home to watch the 7th playoff game between the Toronto Maple Leafs and Boston or to see “The Great Gatsby” on a night when the theater probably wasn’t crowded . Well Gatsby won out . I paid my 16.00 admission and 11.00 for a small bit of plain popcorn with a pinch of salt and a pint sized diet coke. Guess what …the theater was practically filled on a Monday night at the Manulife building . My wife and I tried to see the movie this past Friday but all the theaters playing Gatsby downtown were sold out . What is it that draws one to this movie besides the promise of the glorious 20 ‘s motifs, decor & dress ? I think it is something else other than that visual appeal . As I settled into my theater seat, put my 3Dglasses on and began to watch ,I realized I had seen the last Gatsby movie made with Robert Redford in 1974 on a week night as well, and that it too was packed at the time. (DiCaprio vaguely looks like a thinner young Redford in the movie) .

What is it about this story that makes it so popular ? Is it the symbolism of the green light at the end of the Harbour, the mystique of the author Fitzgerald & his wife Zelda , the splendour, excess, optimism, and excitement of the Roaring 20s ? I don’t think so, even though they are all relevant and have particular appeal especially in our times . As asserted in a recent newspaper article Fitzgerald wasn’t I think a stupendously artful or impeccable wordsmith . Hemingway in my opinion was a much more powerful wordsmith and a more technically elegant and simple writer. Hemingway’s descriptions of Fitzgerald and his wife in his novel ” Moveable Feast” were very interesting and revealing vignettes of Fitzgerald’ s character . Regardless Fitzgerald has deftly portrayed through the various twists and turns of his story line, the power of love and essentially has unfolded it as a 20’s morality play happening under the bespectacled eyes of G_d as well as thorough the eyes of the aspiring capitalist narrator Nick Caraway . Carraway unfortunately displays a moral sensitivity that propels him into depths of depression In the story , although he appears to be healed by a therapeutic return to his first love of writing. ( I’m sure a there are a good chunk of aspiring and established authors that can identify with that therapy ).

It is in Fitzgerald’ s skillful weaving of many storyline threads of love ,infidelity, and loyalty, into one thick and unbreakable cord that he achieves the memorable. On the completion of his work “The Great Gatsby”, he must have felt an emotion akin to what Hemingway referred to as the silent secret joy that a writer keeps to himself initially, guards jealously and possessively in recognition that something good has just been written. The joy is in the author’s recognition of something truly ,unique and relevant.

The movie itself was visually exciting and creative , the casting unique , the acting so so , but the storyline is what carried it off and made it memorable once again. Gatsby is in love, deluded, dashing , desperate , dedicated , and a pathetic victim all wrapped up into one well dressed package . The layers in the story are peeled away one by one like veiled curtains but no one gets to see the whole story except for Nick Carraway , with the spectacles of G_d and the eyes of the reader watching over him. The layers are fascinating and as they are peeled away the revealed story becomes smaller , more compact and concise. One of classic lines quoted in the movie of course describes how Daisy and her Husband Tom were careless people who in the end receded into their money and carelessness , as Carraway sinks Into to depression and Gatsby into a hopeful final oblivion.

At the end of my movie experience almost all of the viewers stayed in their seats for a while watching the credits roll . It felt as if they didn’t want to quite let it go . I felt that way as well, just as Gatsby did in the story: He clung to the past, blinded by love, regret, and desire, not wanting to realize that things had changed and that there was an ending .

The symbolic light at the end of the pier that Gatsby clung to was green. The colour green is typically symbolic of vibrant and constant love ( Greensleeves and all ) , but change and the many ways that it is dealt with , seemed to be the only relevant constant in this plot , as it is often in real life . Perhaps coincidentally or not , the colour green is also the colour of money, envy, and of forward movement .





I come alone
to the quiet garden
to abide
it is
alone that
rise .
You hide your face
from profligate
sons and daughters ,
but don’t withhold
your love
from those
who practice politics
of affection
or division,
and even more so ,
from those
who do not.
Let the
of your song
be in the streets
for those
who are
far away
from home .

Pictured above garden of Prince and Princess Abkhazi located in Victoria, British Columbia, They began creating their garden in 1946.