Esoteric Online

Purging, rather than Showing work

     "I'm into throwing away all my crummiest tapes and songs," I told my neighbor Gray.

     "Ah! A purge."

     "Right. It's different when it's voluntary, not like losing stuff to fire, flood or legal maneuver."

     "Making room for the new."

     "Yes, Gray, yes. Sculpting the archive".

      My standards are higher now. And some tunes are transitional -work songs - more important as process than as something to present. It's liberating to look at something you wrote ten years ago, wad it up and toss it. Deleting a file is not as satisfying as crumpling a piece of paper. Here I was, basically taking a dump over a rhyme scheme, and for many moons took it as too precious to just trash like anyone would a Microsoft document today.

     When it came to showing work, there was always an effort to emphasize the ideals. Sure I had plenty of angst material, sure the distinction can be ambiguous,  yeah some of it is good and was performed ... but in life as in art I felt there was already way too much emphasis on anxiety out there and that route wasn't going to be a part of any real progress I wanted to show. Which is why this is perfectly good phase, performing for myself, not recording it, not even for myself. That's been my habit: breaking it has made experimenting with and for myself much more fun than replacing the old tech with microdigitalia. Leave it to other people to produce the interface with the machinery from here. I get to sing aloud as quietly as I've wanted to in my heart all this time.

     

      

      

     

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Comment by sav on January 23, 2019 at 8:56am

I finally got to sing a song aloud to someone. A Bennington College MFA began a writing workshop in the village. She and I were all who were there. Hope Mary draws more members than our winter debut, as she put some good work into planning it. 

"Breathing Lessons Rhymed" was the natural choice. It's a rap. All I had to do was lay out the 5 type written sheets and use my Sharpie Fine Point like a drum stick on a piece of paper, which is like a snare. It's as well a set of words that I've gone back to refine many times since starting it 14 months ago. Mary liked that there was a little ink scratching and adding from that day, before I brought it to the Left Bank.

The moment was very much in keeping with this entry. It was wonderful. It ended with a little flourish, arm and pen sweeping way left to the Half & Half carton for a multi-beat cadenza and way right for a single closing ding on my coffee mug. 

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