All this time,



There is one simple thing wrong with you – you think you have plenty of time, ---- Don Juan to Carlos Castaneda,

Four months ago, staring at my feet in Curitiba, Brazil. It was a few hours after it happened, I’d never had a gun pointed at my head before, and still haven’t. They kept them hidden. I was thinking - is this where I should be going, what I should be confronting?
I have been destroying buildings of waste hidden out in my heart ever since. There is still much work to be done. I don’t know where all this is going, but I am sitting with a candle through the long Peruvian nights, urging up strength, finding stories, searching out shamans (slowly), and sometimes examining my toes. How far they have come, how far all our toes have come.

Stories can be found here,

the endless scream,


.time ticking

and I have an endless scream inside of me
and I do not know which is screaming,
my heart or my intestines,

-Rainer Maria Rilke from 'The Song the Blind man sings'

This will not be a story. There are no more stories left in my hands.
Nor will this be a poem. My blood has turned grey and cities have empted.
I just have saved breaths, here and there, trying not to go mad. I'm too far away from nothing I know.

We spoke on the phone tonight. It's been the first time in months. Last year I had the idea that to understand all of the knives that have found their way towards my neck, I would have to understand him. Man, I would have to forgive him for everything.
He's almost seventy, now. His hands are bloodshot and his eyes cracked open. He was the one who planted words inside of me. And this yearning, this breaking open, this walking without fin. I grew up with his travel yarns as my bedtime stories, in between the screams and the way he could break the bones of someone dear to him just with the tone of his voice.
When I came back last year, he told me, 'Son, I feel you have really grown in this time'. Eighteen months. But he didn't call me son. He probably called me little squirt. No, not this either. Most likely, he called me Simon, which is the name of my brother. It has got progressively worse over the last years.
'You have become someone. You look after people around you, now'.
I felt it too.
The next time we saw each other, it was all lost. Perhaps I stopped to care for people again. A gritting her teeth and shouting, 'now, I become evil- I leave everything' and with that, stamped on his foot.

'And it swelled up to the size of a coconut', he was telling me, on the phone. I tried not to imagine it but it comes to me like fish floating towards me. Blub blub, blub blub. 'It turned purple. It seemed to be an eye blinking back at me'. Di mi.
'Did you think it could have been a tumour?', I ask him.
I have car crashes piling up inside of me. I'm surprised my whole body is not wrought with bumps and missing limbs.
'I began to think of death, yes'.
He's always thinking of death. Even more than me. But I've never been sure if he ever really considered it a reality beyond his own thoughts. He would sometimes tell me, right before I went to sleep, 'if you die in your sleep, it will be your karma' and he would laugh. It was a laugh that seemed to reverberate within my chest. For hours I would see the tigers prowling my bedside, waiting for me to drift off.
I don't tell him about dying in a bathroom in central Mexico with blood over the walls, sprinkled like snow, coughing out my insides. It was my heart and my intestines at once, screaming to the sky full of helicopters, searching for what disappeared,
'Dad?'
..
'I coughed so hard last night that blood started coming out of all parts of me.'
'You're sick?'
...
'Eat garlic.'

He's speaking of travel insurance.
I'm thinking of all the hardest times I've ever known.
I decide I will write.
When he's seventy, there will no longer be any insurance.
'You should buy the greatest tea in the world instead', I tell him. I was never strong in practicalities, I ponder, sipping my red tea. If I had been, I would never have been here. All of this would just be theory, gnawing my knuckles raw. The quality of experience, regardless of how much you scream,

Image - time is ticking - author unknown.

wild fruits I have known,

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The Letters of Edward Gorey and Peter F. Neumeyer

The small tree in front of my little house has sprouted flowers. It is the only blossom so far in the garden. Spring has come cartwheeling towards me.

Along my arms are deep scratches without maps. They appeared while waiting for a pizza handmade at the front of the shop by an Italian man born from the centre of an oak tree.
Every time I arrive back here, I look forward to the sound of the pavement slabs moving underneath my tyres just as I approach home. 
Each evening when I drink tea, Ian approaches me believing that he is invisible. I gaze straight at him as continues to creep. He would not fare well as a deer.

vanishing,

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Edison’s anti-gravitation under-clothing, 1879

And I feel I have something to say before my destruction,
- Kendall, letter to Anais Nin.

Impossible things refuse to jump out of my hat any more.
I pass much of the time, these days, inside of this hat speaking with a rabbit over tea and biscuits. And time constantly tumbling past me in a flurry. I hold onto it sometimes and it drags me, half dead to the sea. I rub my eyes, astonished to still be alive, perplexed that this is my life and that it is not full as it should be, it is not bursting with passion in this moment. The greatest crime I could ever commit - licking away at the sun and murmuring about forgotten days, wishes made in the wilderness. 
In this time, I am not a magician.

me levanto,

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Fritz Goro - Sooty tern chick standing forlornly as it waits for its parents from their daily hunting on the Great Barrier Reef, 1950.

/.
I felt I was myself a crawling insect doomed to perish, seized by destruction in the midst of a whole world ready to go to sleep.
-Knut Hamsun

I collected herbs from the mountains and dropped them into my breast pocket of my coat. Every time I put it on now, I am taken back. 
Each morning I cycle to the sea and work on my Spanish for at least an hour. When Siberia leaves, I will begin to run again. And there are certain books that I pick up that remind me of heightened senses. I try my best to avoid them when the sinking days are around, as if drowning myself voluntarily. 
The sacred white tea that was found behind a bakery in Denmark is with me here, six months on. It still clears my eyes, steadies my breaths. I drink it rarely, in the important times.
This is an important time. I am no longer headless but I wish the existential crises' would just shoo. There have been so many over the last couple of years. Does it matter what I'm doing with my life? Shoo, shoo. It does not help in the slightest that there is a dog across the road with exactly the same problem. He and I howl together often but he's far more persistent than me and rarely sleeps.

Seek knowledge, even in China,

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Giambattista Piranesi: “Il Ponte Levatoio/The Drawbridge” (1761).

Suddenly, the temperature has dropped. Last night travelling back in the dark, a large boulder of a man picked me up and he looked at me and asked if he could dunk me in his tea as he did not have any biscuits.
I had two hundred and fifty grams of smoky tea from China in my bag, enough to last me until the summer and most of my hair swiped off like a goat by a man who once worked with Vidal Sassoon and in Hollywood. I didn't think that was so much to be proud of when he spoke of the glory and the celebrities but I like my ears just the way they are and his scissors were sharp. He was from Sicily and expressed dismay at my washing my hair with stinging nettles.

Off for the journey of two thousand kilometres where it will almost be thirty degrees warmer than here. A winter of tea and books and the sea. And a bicycle and a small house of my own. It doesn't feel real, right now, as if good things cannot come without great struggle and pain.
It has already been, I tell myself. Go towards good things.

[title - an old Chinese proverb].

to write means to give all,

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Letters from a shipwreck - recovered and delivered [source unknown]

migration
some of my writing, hopes and attempts at clarity will be here now - http://birdsongsofpersia.tumblr.com/.
This journal will most likely stay in motion but within another form. It has been dear to me during these last near-on seven years. Thank you all for reading through these turbulent, passionate, sometimes ridiculous growth of times.

With warmth and the promise of hot steaming tea on long winter days,
Jass

the only way to leave the gallows is by flying,

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by Ben Shahn

Only a soul full of despair can ever attain serenity and, to be in despair, you must have loved a good deal and still love the world.
— Blaise Cendrars

Time in Berlin fell with the snow, gradual and soft, the days almost infinite. I sleep for twelve hours and wake as if from underground, inside myself. The eyes of this city leave me enchanted, powerful beacons of light through the thick, hard winter. I anticipate exploding. I wait, and I wait. For my heart to lurch out through the windows of candlelit slick graffiti bars or into the arms of a ticket inspector of the metro we hop on without tickets. But nothing. Just absence that grows stronger and stronger the more solitude that comes. 
God, I'm so so sorry. I have not been enough. Not for you, not for I.
Too - I have not written enough and my life is not a transformation any longer. All the clarity that came in summer migrated to confused, foolish lands in autumn. And now winter.
But enough is a ridiculous notion.
Berlin, an energy of rebirth. A coat and a sweater given to me for the trip east. Blessings everywhere, despite all this.

Wroclaw - baked bread, tea, all day cooking a Christmas Pudding from my grandmother's old recipe.  
Here the time hurtles by and I don't know what to make of it all. Deep, relentless confusion.
Be as light as the first snowflakes, I tell myself. Be the breath that came out of you when you saw your first moose in North America. Be excitement itself and curious even for the things that are already known. This must be the core and sweetness of what it is to be alive, I'm sure of it. 
To rediscover instinct and to be led on whims and passion. 

redoublement des mystiques,

how we talk
together in the snow,
- Bahauddin


The need of deep creative destruction, songs to the arctic owl. Two degrees outside and travelling becomes a suffering to be sharpened and plunged deep into my stomach. Ven sleeping close to me upon the last night on earth, our last together for I don't know how many days or months or years as she makes her return back to Bulgaria and I must at last figure out what it is that I want to do beyond all, past motion, past whatever rabbits jump out of my hat. What is it that I'm doing after all of this? Where is my writing at the ends of the earth?
Try my best not to feel the abandonment, the desolation of a life alone once more. I ask if we just didn't want this life here. Four days together, passing in a stampede of blues.The maddened cold days of Copenhagen. They crawl into our words as irritations build en mass, flattened under the rails by trains carrying wingless birds. Loved, in love and will love but can no longer expect the miraculous to leap out of every street corner. I must have the strength to search it out at least.
The most logical thing. Bounding up to Scandinavia in winter could lose me my fingers. What is it that I'm becoming, growing to? If we are strong enough, we will make it through all. Horses galloping through ice-storms inside of me.  To create an astonishing existence, finally.