Monday, June 6, 2011

of myth and miles: an essai of lung-distance-log slant.

June 6th  
i. miles as excavation.

de kooning had translucent&papery teeth from a malnourished childhood and in new york while painting some of the most powerful art of the postwar america he survived on cafeteria packets of ketchup 'cause all his money went to color and bedsheet-canvas and midnight coffee. 
(fifteen cents and limitless refills made for many insomniac abstract expressionists.)  
kline was at the cafeteria doodling on napkins later folded into pocket for further development, his eyes and coalminer hands charcoal dark, his eyes and fingers yellowing. motherwell wrote eager ideas with a pencil from harvard and he was not hungry but he was struggling (columbia was expensive).  gorky had one good arm left, the wrong one, and he managed to off himself with it. meanwhile rothko was bleeding out in his studio bathroom, seagrams seven thinning the blood and rushing the deadlocked thing.  schnabel was not yet 
a boy and beuys was the new duchamp and freud was sipping schnapps with bitter, muscleless models.

i was crossing the wrightsville beach drawbridge at mile nine with the chorus in mind: de kooning had translucent teeth and meticulously clean brushes.

rage and its echo.  

pollock once punched de kooning. rauschenberg once erased de kooning. de kooning didn't give a shit either way. he was occupied.

Later de kooning would succumb to alcohol and elaine and alzheimers and his estate would be dredged through the legal imbroglio that makes even the purest painting a horror of assethood and de kooning (in flemish) means “the king."

to enunciate, van gogh's ribcage splintered into waspnest lungs beneath ironball shot, the fire of absinthe neurosis, the spray of ravens above sunflowers, impasto tracks of bristle in lemonyellow sun. beneath these things was the love of a perfect pigment and the god igniting it. 

and right now its blueberry scones and gogol bordello with kyote in backyard, monday brunch, and i'm anchoring this narrative back down.

y'day was a touch cooler and I was due a long run, 18 or 20, needing the mileage appropriate to the grandfather mountain marathon in 34 days but a sore throat and some mad sinus pain worked against me, dropping my mileage to a struggling 10 miler. wrightsville beach's wide loop (including the bird reserve and some incline/declines along the way to summer rest) seemed right and I ran it without haste as a white porpoise drifted beneath the bridge at mile seven but the white porpoise became a white buoy and the heat was working by this time and my pace was labored but obligated. Ruminations on the grandfather mt. 26 continued and de kooning was there too but considerations of running the asu track into the mountains replaced much dread with reflection on runs past. Runs on highwayside in tennessee, cold rain spitting into face wincing against early-evening headlights. Runs on unpainted asphalt roads across pennsylvania farmland rolling in neat mondrian quilt. Runs passing bridges over mayan ruins on red oxide bikepaths in cancun. 
then the infernal walks of earlier days, the miles spent walking beneath delirium and depression or chemical horrors or just searching for something different to endure, something worth enduring, and the idea of running boone's memory-laden streets forces a barrage of questions, a season of introspect, un saison en enfer. And  37 years pushes the introspect a bit deeper, pushes the drawing paper and running shoes and dead paint-tubes and gray paint and gray hair and gray language. Immersion in a thing:  it is the passion that is important. it is the faith to work that is important.  to be present in the work of the thing, the Work of the thing, its struggle, is what is important.  

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