Translations for the Deaf.

Douglas Hofstadter wrote about Googel translate not too long ago.

As an American, foreign languages are not the priority of inner city schools, at least not the one I attended. Not, their fault either.

I failed Kiswahili enough times, in college, to blow the socks off of any Kenyan who I meet stateside.

Ninasema Casey.

No one speaks any “Swahili” here. Not enough to even make the general populace know the language is factually called Kiswahili.

Bless you, Bibi Jane. And, bless you end of term oral examiner.

Can I write my responses to your oral questions?: I asked.

No.: she responds.

Shit: I think.

I’ve worked in enough restaurants to learn functional Spanish and Kiswahili.

(A surprising number of Kenyan immigrants in B’ham, AL. Magic City

We got a Nemo walking in: Robert would call to his kitchen, at Tavern on the Summit, whenever a catch of the day ticket came through. Howlarious.

But fish don’t walk, Robert: I’d always say

[After dinner rush, in the alley, smoking a cig.

Me: I thought “fish” was “samaki” in Kiswahili.

Robert: No, dummy. Nemo, like the movie.

Howlarious.]

)

I listened to this show, just now.

A few phrases in foreign languages hooked my attention.

I connect to Catalan, Frisian, and Corsican.

Don’t ask why, because I don’t justly know.

I love playing with Translate ever since the Hofstadter article.

But, I don’t have friends like his, to give feedback on the intimacies of Translate’s inadequacies.

On a cru que les données allaient nous libérer: appears in type face on the screen behind the band.

I make haste to Translate.

To triangulate my linguistic location.

If the phrase is in Frisian it translates to: On a cru que les données allaient nous libérer.

It translates to itself.

If the phrase is in either French or Corsican it translates to: it was believed that the data would free us.

In Corsican, the same spellings translate to: where it’s raw than the others were waiting for release again.

Hot and beautiful. Both.

Désormais ton monde est ainsi fait: appears in type face on the screen behind the band.

I make haste to Translate.

To triangulate my linguistic location.

If the phrase is in Frisian it translates to: this is a ton of things to do.

If the phrase is in French it translates to: now your world is so made.

Howl.

Viynl Track Intro

I notice

a bonfire,

(alit via a couple of cotton balls, a lighter, and a tube of

lip balm)

burning high,

(especially when being properly blown into)

sounds a lot like a needle, with

a diamond tip,

sliding around and around,

a viynl record’s groove.

Shhhhtshhht.

Right before the song starts.

It is like that?

Because we are perceivers, that is why?

There is only causation because we create it?

We created the Why?

We have an inborn propensity to see causation. We attribute our perceptions to external causes, but some perceptual representations are internal, for instance, optical illusions.

[Consciousness] is an evolved user-illusion, a system of virtual machines.

David C. Dennett. The Evolution of Minds: from bacteria to Bach. 2017

The voice of knowledge wants to know what everything means, to interpret everything that happens in our lives.

DM Ruiz & DJ Ruiz. 2010, p124 & 13. ISBN 978-1-878424-61-7

Formalizing metaphysical, higher-level education

Prof. Lewis: what is the meaning of life?

Carroll: to answer the question, “what is the meaning of life?” Is that right?

Chuck raises his hand and is acknowledged; he asks: will this be on the quiz?

Physicsical Moaning

I smile: I am pleased you like the work, but not particularly interested in why.

You liked how it felt.

Instead, tell me about the last dream you had while sleeping?

Did you like how it made you feel?

I dreamt a record store called All ‘N Analog. It was no analogue.

And,

What if it turned out that Paul Revere was just a Boy who cried Wolf?

Let’s incorporate.

A stem [becomes]

steAm.
Repetition of action is

not repeating oneself;

though, care must be taken, of course, so you

don’t repeat yourself;

but, sometimes I love it when

you repeat yourself

(or ask me questions, the answers to which you believe you already know.)

Self-awareness of ignorance can nearly

overcome it.
Just don’t over-commit.

You will, still, scratch that itching nose with a finger, whether you are aware you do so,

or not.

You skate on a bead of water produced from the ice you melted as the blade of your skate skirted over it.

You have not cut the ice.

Boiling point is dependent upon the local atmospheric pressure, sweet thing.

Are you at an elevation of simple sea level?

The triple point of water.

A bathtub producing water, ice, and steAm from its faucet head.

All states

existing simultaneously; and, at the same time,

the ultraviolet exposure at my atmospheric level, fries, while I watched the sun rise

from my spectacular, secularly sacred space.

Flying in Formation

The dissonance of a consciousness can be caused by a lack of cultural consonance.

A flock of birds makes daily, coordinated flight shows,

training the little birds,

the ones I watched learn to fly over the last week.

The seven others will make tight, sharp barrell rolls,

reversing their momentum and direction.

The three babes miss the sign

and lose their flock.

I see the panic in the way their wings change their flapping.

Labouring in Unkind Kindness.

A day I play like Cool Hand Luke.

If you labo(u)r, you probably do not have Labor Day off.

You are probably extra busy with your labor, in fact,

because of all those non-physical labourers who do have the day off.

No judgement, just observation derived from experience as someone who has been on both sides.

This is pure assumption: I can tell if you have ever worked on your feet, by how you interact with me when I am running a waiting list for the restaurant.

Open secret x: I am the hostess. I want you happy.

Open secret x’: you will not piss me off nor will I say anything unkind.

You know why?

Because, nothing pisses cranky people off more than someone who will not take your anger bait.

Killing you with kindness quite literally, you silly folks.

This is where the Tao of Cool Hand Luke comes into play.

You trying to put me down on the ground?

I just keeping getting back up with a giggle and a smile.

I have been through far worse.

I can do it until you are uncomfortable.

Every now and then, I can even make you smile.

Score.

I appear daft. Too stupid to realize I am being insulted.

I appear sugary sweet, but I speak in a calm, deep, resonant voice.

Just so you get a grip on the power of my gravity.

Unkindly kind.

The benefits of walking the block

I decide I need a tab, as they say.

American Spirit: ingredients: water and tobacco.

And some kind of paper, right?: I wonder.

The point is moot as I have already inhaled the combustion of fire to leaf.

Why are you smoking when all you really want is to be walking, Little Wing?: the No-One man asks me.

Because I need to clear my mind and grease the wheel. So, I can count to ten.
Prove it: he says.

One is zero and unity. All and everything. I learned this lesson in the woods, whilst listening too hard and asking too many questions.

Two is a perfect number. Mathematically speaking.

Three is a trinity manifested in a pyramide.

Four is a group that trains themselves in martial arts, as advertised.

Five refers to commercial success. Why?

Six makes me recall you, beast. And what it is to rotate this figure about the x-axis.

Seven reminds me of a trinity of 7’s, of Parzival.

Eight is hate not so far past.

Nine is three, six, and itself. This was the universe to Tesla.

And, ten? Ten is an order of magnitude. Ten makes sense for orientation.

Ten let’s me catch my breath: I concede to him.

I near the entrato the condo and a Vietnamese couple pulls aside me in their SUV.

How do we get to the coast?: the driver asks me through his cracked, automatic window.

Take a right at the stop sign, then, at the fountain on Main Street, take a right.

It is a roundabout.

Thank you. How lucky you are to live here: they say, after we struggle through language barriers and we repeat the same sentences between ourselves six times in total.

Yes, I am lucky to stay here: I reply.

I wave as they speed to the stop sign.

I told you that I needed to walk the block: I tell the No-One man.

He rolls his eyes.

A Watery Whale Wail

Have you ever stared, for a long time, at a large body of water?

More than an hour, or

until you can’t remember if the water is actually the sky and perhaps it is you that has been submerged in water the whole time?

Like maybe the horizon is a surfacing point where you and I breathe like whales?

Spouting our exhalations and thrilling the star ships above our surfaces.

It feels like when you sit in a room alone and repeat your own name aloud, for a minimum of three minutes.

Incepting yourself as you dialate time through your subjectI’ve experience.

Like purposefully esoteric, alternative spellings.

Hiss

The flicker of a whisper appears in my ears.

I hiss a response, in kind.

Sssssss.

Only one international phonetic alphabetic difference between:

Sssssss.

[and]

Zzzzzz.

In the English language.

Fricatives

voiced and voiceless.

Aspirated or otherwise.

My eyes narrow.

Simply evidence of closer observation and inspection,

no signal of disbelief.

Curiosity is the momentary suspension of belief.

Investigative.

Mettle of metal

being testing

in the seriousness of this series of silence.

Energetic Exchanges

I wear all black with saddle leather boots, for work.

Straightened hair business.

As I walk, I unfurl my energetic wings.

My mantle.

Cold steel blades slide out through my shoulder blades.

Clinking.

I shake them. Loosening.

They respond when I dress this way.

I take care to align each blade so they will fold away properly.

Inappropriate for the task at hand.

I call forth the other side.

gossamer feathers.

Carefully unfurling.

One flies a’loose, fluttering into the breeze like a shining bit of a spider’s web.

The feathers still smell of you from last night.

From when you came to my mind with your pain clear in your

energetic, non-corporeal eyes.

Come in: I told you silently.

You stepped behind my back.

Squared with my shoulder blades.

Your pain began pouring out.

I collected you in my steely wings. Making a box.

A safe place. An unobservable vacuum within which you may thrash and wail.

I dropped down my feather mantle for you.

Draping the steely interior in celestial down.

Those who would prey upon your moment of weakness

slay themselves upon my well-honed metallic feather-blades, trying to break in.

Ships, at night, on a rocky coast with no lighthouse.

With each slam of your energetic body against the walls of my wings, you felt nothing but goose down envelope you.

I took great care to ensure this.

You fell asleep inside. I opened the space, covered you, cupped your hipbone, and slept aside you.

Punctuated Equilibrium

I watch talented women sit silently aside who they championed.

They simply sit and smile.

Power move: says my optimistic soul.

The strength to stillness.

Empowered or powerless?

I do not always know how to look for what I want.

It is no matter of courage.

Feeling lost and found because I don’t think there’s anywhere to go.

These places are just places.

Amazing and mundane.

Simultaneous.

Does anyone say what they mean?

And, everywhere, everyone finds a reason to use the word /cassette/.

It shatters my heart on impact into my ears.

A heart for a heart.

Who is your audience?

A hopeful foundation

for a handmade looking glass house.

Espy patience feeling impatient.

“A common woman goes far,” my grandmother told me.

“And, a comma can change entire meanings,” she said without saying.

So I repeat myself:

“Æ pay attention to your punctuation.”

Inviting.

I watch white butterflies flutter by.

The local feral cat dozes under a nearby bush.

As with the boisterous Stellar’s jays who I feed peanuts, the cat accepts my presence now.

S/he gives me a lazy, sidelong glance.

I focus into those two eyes and blink my own very slowly.

The cat returns my slow blink.

This means we are still cool. I speak cat, see.

I am poor but I am elitely wealthy in simple luxury.

So, I suppose that I am rich at the moment,

to my mind’s eye.

In scenery. In being able to walk to work.

In being down with the local flora and fauna.

I smell bursts of flowers’ blooms from proficient gardeners.

Blasts of fragrances from local shops with open, front doors.

The day invites me.

35 going on 77

A sawtooth comb for newly brittle hair.

Almost raking the wet curls.

A mind sulking over some lost piece of life, perhaps?

Everything is easier under the cover of my clouds and stars, dear,

including your lucid waking and dreaming.

I take the long way home.

I pause.

From outside the pub, I listen to the band play.

I consider going inside.

I see someone eyeball me and motion to an empty seat.

I smile and shake my head.

He cannot take the place of the one on my mind tonight.

I do not seek distraction.

I will enjoy my own smouldering.

A game of patience.

A study in control.

A tyre pyre burning.

I pass a man followed by a woman.

He has his hand extended behind him.

Fingers shifting in an effort to convince her to hold his hand.

I wonder why she didn’t take it into hers.

68 Coffeecake/86 Crab. tuesday

If you comment: it’s not exactly rocket science, you sound like you think you are a rocket scientist.

The silver couple arrives. She forgets my name but gives me a new one each day. Curly Sue. Dimples.

Today, I am Goldilocks.

She asks the bartender my name when she thinks I cannot hear. She suggests I read the poem Casey at the Bat. Hum, huh.

The village beach preservation busy body society has two tables held for them. One for the men and one for the women. Twelve seats total. Only three women come. They talk the politics of healthcare and about the addicts in their lives.

Our speakers play almost decent, easy listening blues. If you can imagine such a thing. Almost-Stevie Ray Vaughan comes on.

Nearly-Suite: Judy Blue Eyes plays.

We are slow enough that I actually noticemusic is playing.

And, time moves slowly now.

The reservation for six at noon became 4 at fifteen ’til

.All named Pat.

“You are pulling my leg, right?”

“No! It’s Pat’s Day. Okay, now I am kidding you about that. We are all named Pat.”

He and the other Pat (only two have arrived) laugh uproariously.

Mike comes by to make a reservation.

He shows me his Book of Answers.

“My wife found this in 2000. Ask a question and flip to any page.”

He carries a green street sign in a plastic sleeve under his left arm, hugged against his ribs.

He adds:”You don’t have to tell me the question.”

I silently ask the question on my mind.

Tolle Lege.

The page I flip to, it reads:

it is not guaranteed.

That figures: I think.

The thing about which I framed my inquiry is not guaranteable.

He and Tony will return for lunch tomorrow.

A regular left me this.

Monday’s Hostess

It is nearly sunny over Puget sound by eight a.m.

My feet pound pavement. Walking to work.

A simple luxury of the highest order.

A man hugs three people outside the osteria,

one at a time,

ring around the roses style.

Lighting a cigar, he and his bulldog walk away and across the street to

my side of the road.

They precede me by about six feet as we walk.

I inhale deeply the spirals of smoke that follow him.

I feel less sheepish about the plumes of vapor I emit.

He stops to let me pass.

“Don’t want you breathing my fumes.”

“I was enjoying it.”

I was enjoying it, too.

“Showbiz Kids” comes through my cans.

Steely Dan’s Countdown to Ecstasy.

Five minutes later, I arrive at the cozy, little bistro located on Main Street. Two blocks from the water. I see the beach town’s Monday morning is already in full swing. Live and bumping with mostly silverhairs, at this hour.

The exception being a thirty-something couple that I wager is still out from last night.

They drink a lot of water.

(No one likes ice in their water here.)

I hum my hellos to the front of house crew.

I get mumbles back. It is early.

I announce my hellos to the back of house who are singing a song in Spanish that I have never heard. They wave enthusiastically. They have been here three hours longer than front of house.

Their coffee already kicked in.

11:05 a.m.

and, the sun finally asserts itself, breaking free from behind clouds.

This thrills and disappoints.

I am already sweating. The A/C unit has not worked since I started.

I am used to the heat from my former life.

I hear garbled voices rise:

“[Something, something, something] Moroccan immigrants!”

Followed by:

“[Something, something, something] So what?! People look at you funny? Big deal.”

I doubt he knows what that feels like, but

what do I know?

As he leaves, I smile and offer the obligatory: “Thanks for coming in. Have a good day.”
He halts.

“No!” he says, then approaches me.

Stepping in close.

“I had a friend and when people told him to have a good day, he’d say, “Don’t you ever tell me what to do.” “

I laugh and I mean it.

“Well, in that case, I sure hope you have an awful day,” I say with nonchalance.

He looks confused then smiles.

“This one, huh?” he says to no-one, indicating me with a finger.

“Didn’t you learn pointing at people is impolite?”

“Are You Happy Being A Schmuck? Lou Reed, Sydney 1975”

No rights: homage.

I am a part-time many things, but a full-time rock n’ roll animal.

While I am on record as not enjoying hearing musicians talk about their music, there are several notable exceptions that make the rule.

Neil Young, Johnny Lydon, Michael Stipe, Joni Mitchell, David Bowie.

But, my absolute favorite musician interviewee is Lou Reed.

This captures some of his essence.

This captures all the bizarreness of journalism and media.

Catchling calling.

You enter, please. Come to me catchling.

I hear you in the forest, leaves skulking.

I smell you just as before.

A little sleep following a long night jolts my mind into these new, waking dimension/s.

I turn

to look at you.

And, I know that I want.

I want with wanton desires.

This kindled flame did fell me before the universe in prostration to the sensation stirring in me.

I shall know you when I see you again. I see you everywhere.

My surrender to pursue the mastery of your pleasure and discomfort.

Your stoic stillness and

those heavy shoulders.

My reserved disposition conceals me

as I see past veils, into swirling thoughts of desires to devour.

Delectable with shameful kindness.

To tell you:

I want to.

I want, too.

I too want to.

Desire wanting after waiting

demands:

be wrapped in gossamer as I

shake you loose from yourself so you can breathe deeply

before me.