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Dear Jamie

August 22, 2016

I am starting at the first page following several notes of my 11th grade U.S. History class.  It’s one of those old spiral notebooks I found in the envelope, package and notebook scrap heap under the EPP station.  I obviously had saved these notes because  I felt the information had value to me.  Glancing over them, Chapter 14 “Compromise and Conflict, which starts from the late 1840’s to to just before the Civil War, no 21 and a half years later, I re-cognize that value.  There are some Kansas events that had been forgotten.

More on that later for now I must share with you, how wonderfully lucid-dream like it feels to be sitting at your desk (my old table from Sunflower [House/Cooperative]) surrounded by your well ordered stationary, supplies and art.  I am jealous.  I’ve gotta step up my office to at least a half-as-cozy as yours level.  I tilt my head from the right through the open window toward the chorus of frogs and crickets, to the 5” by 5″square painting of abstract lines, convex and other shapes, underneath it the strip of lacy cotton; upwards and left, over the marbled printed tapestry up on where some of your best transposed envelope collages show; then around the corner where your single cage like crate of file folders sits snug on top of the L shaped mini table;

offic of Jamie pic 1

then to the back wall where the majestic small scale of images evokes multiple worlds all across the back wall of this corner above your “list of things to work on.” and beneath it the bulk of your writing utensils and staple office supplies finally I get to the left of my body, up above that psychedelic pin-up of an animated outer space flower garden surrounding 3 oval spaces, bird’s eye view of a moon canyon and the guilty stare from former president Clinton’s eyes (taken from the cover of a late 1990s issue of Rolling Stone Magazine.

The upload of the Clinton episode of PBS American Experience that I selected for us to watch tonight is split up in four parts.  I stopped at the end of the first some 25 minutes after you fell asleep.  It is easy to splurge on it.  I am after all a political junky.  it’s really hard to live with some times, because it doesn’t exalt my sense of life in the same way that good art, literature and good human interaction can.  It’s tainted with something, almost like a bad conscience.  Or, at least some bad underlying assumption that I can’t free myself from.

To be sure, my love of politics is my love of plays of forces, multiple levels of conflicts between entities, fighting for things that may conceal or reveal other deeper causes.  Conflict that changes the social and spatial landscapes in which we identify ourselves or someone else.  Conflict that may allow me to describe a situation in a way that defines what it is to be human.  In other words my addiction to politics is very much the same as my love for narrative art.

But action, where does non vicarious action come in?  Most definitely not within the equidistant points of view that would 1. help me get my fix and 2. address the ancient philosophical questions of “how should you lead your life”, “what are we”, “how do we make sense to each other”, “how can we live together with as much peace as possible” and “how will it end”?  To be sure, my commitment to politics, political action has very little to do with my love of politics.  The former is out of a deep commitment to what I see the good life as being, and belief that collective–concentrated collective actions can make changes I want to see in the world.  Whereas my love of politics tends to feel like passing time when I’m too fogged to face what might be called literature, poetry and almost anything that engages my creative intellect.   [and I feel horrible when I go too long without creating] Hence the feeling similar to bad conscience.

This difficulty is also made harder –and more interesting– by my difficulty to feel connected to other people as often as I’d like, or perhaps feel I should be.  I am currently smiling, aware of how you are a staggering but uplifting exception.  (It took me thirty seconds and I could only think of staggering but uplifting!)  But I also started thinking that there may be those I look on as loved ones who don’t even have that luxury: to see connection with others as consciously necessary to manage a modicum of thriving, to consciously desire connection and consciously obtain it.  I have read too many [fill in sub genre]___ novels.

Anyway, that “bad underlying assumption I can’t free myself from”?  Maybe it’s more than one.  One is a fear that I may not absorb the freedom of other to the point of total witness they deserve.  Another is that I won’t feel that I’ve read enough fiction until I learn to accept the way things are more often.  How often?  Enough to show my love for you (and others) in as dedicated a way as possible.

I think I’m touching upon something that’s really close to my aesthetics, and maybe my politics, and something that may improve our relationship.  Save this, and I will continue it the next time I can’t fall asleep with you.

 

Love you so much,

Creed ([A.K.A.] “Chauo”)

 

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