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OCTOBER 2010

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Constant J - Embedded Reporter in Hell Leroy Smith. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Meet the Artist: The Gene-Spliced Mutations of Ben Cartright Review by Trevor Richardson. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Is Rza the Modern Day Renaissance Man? Cody Finkner. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15

The World Wasn’t the World Anymore Gary Brown. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .18

Showdown at Cherry Grove Retirement Village Michael Fugere . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Friends Dillon Mullenix. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .26 Meet the Artist: Johnathan James Review by Trevor Richardson. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28

Pity Machines, Roadtrippers Anon. Clark Waldo. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34 Statues Victoria Moyer. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36

This Month in History Pat Moffett. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38 Beer Bottled Songs James Day . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40


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OCTOBER 2010

Constant J - Embedded Reporter in Hell

This is Constant Jay,

embedded reporter for International Tattletale, live from Hell. For the past three days, I’ve been overlooking Lawyer’s Leap, watching business as usual. Every day, every lawyer here must convince a jury comprised of former clients that they shouldn’t have to jump off the cliff onto kneedeep embers and splinters of mica. Of course, they never win. Each attorney jumps and suffers, the way their clients did. That little bit of irony gives Hell a romantic “justice-served” aura we all have to love, but where does that twist of wit originate? Who comes up with the daily rituals that playfully, poignantly torment for all eternity? The comic relief down here comes from the man himself— that guy in red with the pointy tail and a pair of horns--the devil.

Leroy Smith

“Yeah, I write ‘em all,” he said during a recent interview, “Every goddamned one. Get it? God-damned? The way I figure, we’re gonna be down here for a long time, so we may as well have a little fun. Just because it’s hot doesn’t mean we’ve lost our sense of humor. Since Sam Kinneson died I’m writing better than ever,” he reflected, “He’s been a great influence on me. I’m working on a one man show, kinda’ like Vagina Monologues, but without the vagina. To me vagina is like etouffé. I like to eat it, but hate to say it. Ba-da-bump. Hey, I’m here all week. Forever,” he laughed.


OCTOBER 2010 This is Constant J, embedded reporter in Hell for International Tattletale, and I have to admit, I’m beginning to like this Devil guy. He’s not as bad as some deities would have you believe and he’s opening up during our fireside chats.

A few hours later, I found a room filled with formerly funny folk chained to computers, poring through joke books and famous quotations trying to come up with newer, even more ironic tortures for the damned.

“People are always telling me how naturally funny I am,” he said. Maybe they’re bullshitting me because I run things and they think I’ll cut them a break. But this is Hell, and there ain’t no fucking breaks.

When I confronted the devil he said, “Yeah, I have a couple ghost writers. Who doesn’t? Leno does. Letterman does. Anyway, I’m the devil, remember? I lie.”

“Hey, I’ve been working on my bit,” he said suddenly, “Would you mind listening and letting me know what you think? I don’t trust anyone down here to be honest.”

When asked why he let me visit as an embedded reporter, he said, “Why not? Who’s going to believe you anyway?”

“I’d be honored,” I replied, “Just don’t get mad if I don’t think it’s funny.”

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“I got the idea for the pitchfork from Bob Hope with his golf club. It’s nice to have something to hang onto when you’re on stage -- for the hecklers, if nothing else. Remember, this is Hell for me too.”

It had to be tough being Joseph. How many times do you think Jesus told him, ‘You’re not my real dad.’ “The same ones who believe us now,” I replied. “Touché, but it’s always best to be honest,” he said “NOT!” Live from Hell, this is Constant Jay, embedded reporter, where it’s as hot as, well, as hot as it can be. Really.

“Hey, until you’re dead, I don’t really swing the lead. I can tempt, but hands off. Those are the rules.” Then he gave me a scrap of paper with his introduction on it.

I Wanna Make ‘Em Laugh

“Live and blotto from a dark, smelly grotto in the swollen colon of Hell, the meanest motherfucker in the universe, the Rebel with a Dangling Clause, the Prince of Darkness and Everlasting Humor! YOOOUUUURRRR DEVIL!!!”

Dogs resemble their owners after years together. Hostages empathize with their captors.

“Thanks, everybody. Thanks. Hey anybody think it’s hot down here? Whew. I do. And I’m


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used to it. Raise your hand if you think it’s hot in Hell. Yeah, that’s Hell for you. Always hot. “What’s up with God anyway? I mean he runs time, controls weather, owns nature, geography and science -- he’s always in the news. He must think he’s Rupert Murdock. “Speaking of someone whose 15 minutes of fame are just about over, I got two words. Jesus. And I got one word for Jesus: Julian Lennon. “I’ve seen Penn and Teller do the bread to wine bit better than Jesus did it. There’s a website that shows how to rise from the dead. David Blaine is thinking about doing it for HBO. “Speaking of which, I want to warn any of you male Christians in the audience to watch out up there in heaven. I know Saint Peter and he’s a little, well, he’s a few hairs short of a beard. “I mean, come on—Saint Peter? More like, Taint Peter, as in ‘Taint Peter, he don’t want it.’ If you notice he has no little girl cherubs hanging around. “And lemme tell you something else. That ain’t pearls on those pearly gates. Mmmm-hmmm. Truth ain’t pretty. “Did you know there’s a reference to PMS in the Bible? Yeah, it says, ‘Mary rode Joseph’s ass the whole way to Bethlehem.’ “It had to be tough being Joseph. How many times do you think Jesus told him, ‘You’re not my real dad.’ “Hey, get this. Jesus was at a disco, having trouble dancing, so he says, ‘Help! I’ve risen and I can’t get down!’ “I actually get mistaken for the son of God all the time. Just today, I walked into a bar and the bartender looked up and yelled ‘Jesus Christ! Are you here again?’

“But seriously, what do you think Jesus’ last words were? It wasn’t ‘They know not what they do.’ I know because I was there. Jesus looked up toward heaven, then out over Calgary, he turned to the guy on his right and he turned to the guy on his left and said, ‘Hey, I can see my house from up here.’ “Don’t forget, I’m here all week until the rapture. Thanks everybody, thanks. You’ve been great. No torture tomorrow. Devil’s day off. NOT! Hahaha! “Speaking of which, what are MY last words going to be? ‘I hope you said there are four Norsemen at the door.’” When the catcalls and boos died away, he turned toward me. “What do you think?” “You have a motivated captive audience. Crowd reaction’s hard to gauge.” “A captive audience? Why didn’t I think of that?” he said. “Can I use it? I’ll give you credit.” “You can have it, but I don’t believe you’ll give me credit,” I said. “You’ve got stage presence, your delivery is good. Your timing is a little off, you laugh at your own material and I think I’ve heard some of those jokes before.” “So I stole a couple jokes. Think Leno never stole? Plus, I put some new stuff in there that wasn’t really ready.” “So why do it? I thought you wanted to impress me? I wanted to see your ‘A’ show,” I replied. “That’s harsh, dude. My agent told me I should try appealing to the 18-25 demographic,” he said as he took out a little notebook, stopped smiling, started writing, “What was your name again? And do you plan on living forever?” This is Constan—I mean this is Rush Limbaugh,


OCTOBER 2010 DEVIL, Hot D.”

The Devil’s Rap

Vocorder intro-- The Devil’s Rap. The Devil’s Rap. The Devil’s Rap is really bad. By bad we don’t mean good. The Devil’s Rap is really bad. We’d tell him if we could.

This is Constant J, formerly embedded reporter in hell for International Tattletale, most recently taking medical leave for post-traumatic stress disorder caused by my last assignment. At first, I started to feel like my old self, but then I began having dreams—terrible frightening red dreams. Dreams in bright horrible red and dark yellow. That’s all I can remember of them. Red dreams and yellow dreams, even when I was awake. And voices, like thousands and thousands of suffering people crying in unison in every language on earth. I realized I was not imagining things when, this very day, my old friend the Devil was here with me at my place of convalescence far out in the woods of New England. He transported me back to his grotto in hell.

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embedded reporter in hell, where it seems even hotter than usual.

The Devil’s Rap (It’s More Fun In Hell)

I’m the Devil. D-E-V-I-ELLLLL. I’m the Devil. DE-V-EYE-L. I’m the Devil. D-E-VEEEEE-I-L. I’m telling you all, it’s more fun in Hell.

Don’t tell me about no bad-motherfo’s. I am surely the great-grandfather of those. I live in a cave where it’s brutally hot. I scare some people. Yeah, I scare a lot. They all hope they don’t end up down here. It fills their lives with loathing and fear Of the dark unknown, the very worst kind, if you know what’s coming you can always throw Up a line of defense, some corny pretense, think you can walk both sides of the fence. My fence is whitewashed with a virgin’s blood. Sacrificed scoring Mexican mud.

And here at his nightclub he has assembled a group of previously living (he hates the word “damned”) rap musicians who have had their eyes and lips coarsely sewn shut so they cannot Oh, yeah. criticize his rapping or his dancing. I learned to rhyme while doing time after getting They play headless guitars. The stage looks kicked out of the Big Sublime. like a set from Sherman’s march to Atlanta. If there’s one thing truly over-rated -- it’s gotta The Devil hopped off the stage, slid over to me be heaven -- it wasn’t that great. and said, “For your spewing pleasure and sick There’s isn’t one large breasted stripper -- maknotion of humor, I’ve got a hot one for you. ing me feelin’ not too chipper. This one’s called ‘The Devil’s Rap,’ or ‘It’s More I got over it quick. I thought right away, there’d Fun In Hell.’ Drum roll please. be lotsa virgins with whom to play. But in heaven there’s no sex at all. No need for “And read this Constant J, you bitch.” my dick, no need for my balls. I’m representing H to the e-double ELL with He handed me another of his introductions: women with guns in hell it’s more fun. “And now, once again, they tore down his Hell to build the old school Hell you know from legends; the only guy who doesn’t mind a hotfoot, Mephistopho-Beelzebubbo-Lucifer Sam--YOUR

I’m the Devil. D-E-V-I-ELLLLL. I’m the Devil. D-E-V-EYE-L. I’m the Devil. D-E-VEEEEE-I-L. I’m telling you all, it’s more fun in Hell.


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Let’s rock.

Now don’t you think for a minute, ma’am, there’s a hell or a heaven or a god that’s a man. That’s just the way they control the dam of the free-thinking people who see the sham And know it’s all just another myth like Ulysses or Goliath or Sisyphus. Like Budda or Gilgamesh or any of the other, born without a father or mother. I used to live there—what I say is true. I promise Heaven’s no place for you. I know what you like. It’s easy to tell. I’m the Devil. It’s more fun in hell. I’m the Devil. D-E-V-I-ELLLLL. I’m the Devil. D-E-V-EYE-L. I’m the Devil. D-E-VEEEEE-I-L. I’m telling you all, it’s more fun in Hell. Hey Constant J, you little bitch—FUCK YOU. Hahahaha-hahahaha-hahahaha-HAH I’m the Devil. D-E-V-I-ELLLLL. I’m the Devil. D-E-V-EYE-L. I’m the Devil. D-E-VEEEEE-I-L. I’m telling you all, it’s more fun in Hell. Coming next: The Devil takes his turn on the open mic.

The Devil on the Open Mic Things I Miss That I Did in Heaven That I Can’t Do in Hell 10. Giving Saint Peter a hotfoot. 9. “Accidentally” sending people to hell by mistake. 8. Using all the hot water. 7. Making off-hour calls on God’s cell phone when I was roaming around purgatory looking for a whore 6. Filling Gabriel’s horn with talcum powder 5. Clipping angel’s wings

4. Pissing on seat in god’s bathroom 3. Going through god’s medicine chest 2. Watching Mary shower while drinking wine from God’s personal supply. 1. Dog-earing god’s copy of the bible

When We Get Home I joined an online poetry forum Used my real name. Told them who I was. What I do. What I’m famous for. Where I live. I said this ain’t no joke, kids. They made me moderator that day. I wrote psycho-sexo-dopo poetry about Psychos and sexos and dopos and Robbers and murder and revenge and liars, cheats and thieves. I told them about pain and making people hurt and how I enjoy it. How going to hell was the best thing that ever happened to a guy like me. They said, “You’re as tough as a dog with three balls.” They lifted me up on their shoulders. They cheered and carried me around the Internet. They said, this is god. Look at god. We serve you god. The women want me. The men want to be me. Sinnin’ this and fuckin’ that? Kinky, freaky weekend gothic vampyre, Not afraid to die? Come on. Running with the devil? See you in hell? Right. Think I’m falling for that? You little pussies talk a lot of shit now. We’ll see how tough you are When we get back to my place.


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OCTOBER 2010

E H T T E E M ARTIST:

T H G I R T R A C N E B

f o s n o i t a t u M d The Gene-splice


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by Trevor Richardson The drawings included in the pages of this issue are the work of Charles Ben Russell, AKA Ben Cartright, my friend and inspiration for the character of Charlie Outlaw in my novel, American Bastards. The work speaks for itself. Sloppily executed at times, but elegant in their mischief, the drawings feel like the sort of friendly nightmare you might encounter during a stroll in Ben’s weird subconscious. A mutual friend once wrote to me saying, “I don’t know, man, it’s like he’s tapped into some other plain and we only get to see it through him.” But Ben is a lot of things -- a conduit to his own drug cocktail infused dimension, maybe, but also a friend, a poet, a true seeker, an inspirational dynamo, my own Dean Moriarty or Dr. Gonzo…and those are just what he means to me. More to the point, he’s a singer-songwriter, a dabbling artist, resident of Austin, TX, son of an East Texas football coach father and dentist mother. Those are the hard facts and, perhaps, not possessing enough mystique for Ben himself to feel they’re worth mentioning. But it’s all one long evolution, and whether he likes it or not, all that background got his sound to where it is today.

The songs themselves are a raucous blending of a southern upbringing based heavily on the tunes of true folk and hard country, a youthful dabbling in Punk, old time Baptist hymns, the color of truck stop fare, burned coffee, toothless waitresses, poverty, and a lifestyle often reserved for longshoremen, long haul truckers, cowboys or the Dude. It’s pissing in a bottle while driving ‘cause you can’t afford the time it takes to stop, or loving a lady so bad that she leaves you with a hard-on and her half of the rent unpaid. The songs are the America that gets missed from the Interstates because you can’t see it for the billboard signs blocking your view. They’re an America that’s revisiting economic upheaval, unemployment, and drowning sorrows in booze, campfires or loose friendships on the road. Cartright stomps around on stage with a fuck-all attitude that says, “Hey, maybe depression really is a disease, but I can’t afford the medication.” So we deal with it. We’ll say we earned this. We’ll make it our own, now pull up a stump and we’ll sing about swimming naked with bow-legged women.

When I first heard “Sailor Song” it felt like the anthem of that long, tired year. The stage was the bent, tarred floor of a shabby house in Texas. The croon-


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OCTOBER 2010 growl vocals of Ben slamming his arms together to the lyric, “She broke my wrists, but I’m still making fists,” cut me to the proverbial quick. Suddenly the house was a schooner at sea and we, all of us, were battening down the hatches for a storm that came without warning and was met with a rage and unflappability that told the gods to hit us with everything they had. The song didn’t make us feel saved or lost, it just made us feel unsinkable. The crowd moved, voices cheered, and the band stomped a rhythm that was both a sea shanty and a lone prairie love ballad. And there was Ben: a folk singer protesting the self, the ego, and bad love, nothing more than that. No politicking. No agenda. He just sang the next song, lyrics that asked about reality, not whether we should be at war or vote Democrat. None of that mattered. He wasn’t yesterday’s folk protest singer. He just sang, “This is a series of dreams,” He sang, “Why is this happening?” He protested existence, protested reality. And I thought about Einstein, when he said, “Reality is nothing more than an illusion, albeit a persistent one.” Why is this happening? Why is anything? On stage, there was my friend, transmuted like alchemical lead becoming gold. He was strong, mad even, shaking a fist at cruel women, the loneliness of masculinity or the savagery of lost hope. He protested like a young Dylan, but questioned life above government or prejudice. Seeming more curious than indignant, as if asking the monk on the mountain what it all was for. His music became the steps to the temple and he kept asking, “Why is this happening?” In that moment I saw his future as a musician followed promptly by a vision of him as one of his drawings, an ironic ink scribbled mixture of intent and malcontent. He was a harmonica playing prairie man with a desire for love in spite of heartbreak sloppily sutured together with a malevolent booze hound fresh off his ship saying, “I’ve sailed the seven seas, north and south, far and wide, and there ain’t nothing out there. I’ve seen the world for what it is, a great blue nothing.”

The music itself is an eastbound desert train shipping beer and cigarettes and vagrants to a town since swallowed up in dust and economic depression. The vagrants onboard are his drawings -- half-mutant machinations from a Dali-esque landscape of juggling trapeze artists balancing elephant trunks, telescope star charts, Zodiac giraffes and bird cage minds all posing together to make contorted faces you only see in nightmares or I-35 truck stop diners. They’re brutal men composed of even more brutal ingredients. But you put it all together, the train, the ship, the sailor, the dust, the sensation of an older America tearing up through the skin of this newer, less brave mock-up…you take all that, with the sounds of boots stomping a stage, kick drums, gravel-toned cigarette voices, sweat on a hot microphone, bug zapper stage lights sizzling under a tarpaulin and ship it back and forth cross-country for twenty years and you get Cartright. They’re your first drink of harsh whiskey when your best friend, the one that started hard living years ahead of you, slaps your back mid-belly burn and tells you you’ll get used to it. He says it’s an acquired taste. And so’s the band. So are those weird mutant hobo drawings scrawled on posters, tee shirts and, now, a small time lit mag, but just like that high floating choke in your throat the first time you gulp strong


OCTOBER 2010

Maybe you’re just not there yet. You have to learn how to drink. Same as you have to get your body used to breathing smoke without immediately confusing the sensation for asphyxiation and rejecting the slow burning embers between your fingers. It takes time to learn to drink for pleasure, to smoke without coughing, to hump without popping, and, for some, maybe to find the soul, rhythm, melody and charm in the sounds of Cartright’s music. The eye of many will push away an ink lined cadaver-starfish mask singing Muddy Waters from the 2D backdrop of cheap paper, but they need a stiff arm to give them the needed slap on the back, tell ‘em it’s an acquired taste, but well worth the wait. Ben Cartright is the oil painting under the Last Supper. Covered over by the commissioned work of other, higher paying clientele. But he’s still present, indestructible in his place behind the curtain of the obvious, top-grossing, or clichéd. His work, in pen or prose or kerosene soaked tunes, is as immutable as the urge to laugh during prayer or smoke at a

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drink, it’s worth the effort.


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funeral. But more than that, it’s him. It’s his impulse to throw all of himself into what he creates that makes his body of work both glorious and grotesque. Like a man instantly and simultaneously Jekyll and Hyde, he can seem sinister, beholden, cutthroat, genuine, wise, a fool, and, above all, duplicitous to the point of distraction. You can watch him on stage with his band or sit with him over dive diner coffee and still see the same vague disconnection with his surroundings. Ben Cartright, like the half-breed deformed vagrants in the circus of his art, is two things at once. Always on stage and on his way out, his music, his personality, his drawings, and even his ideas will leave you feeling welcomed as a brother and abandoned as a bastard son. And that,

I think, is his charm. He can give it all away and still leave a crowd feeling hungry. He can break your heart and make you wonder why you ever cared, but still leave you proud to call him friend. Ben Cartright, like the best of his kind, has lived to break the spines of the old and the hearts of the young and if he had a god to pray to for forgiveness he’d tell him it’s his own damn fault for not getting the joke. He’s that beer train of circus freaks dolled up inside a Southern gentleman, and that is just enough of a contradiction to make him dangerous, cunning, and as inspiring as a wrathful angel. Some day I’ll speak at his funeral and I’ll only say that if people were smart they’d have scrubbed down Da Vinci’s Last Supper to see what they all missed. n


OCTOBER 2010

by: Cody Finkner

SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

Is Rza the Modern Day Renaissance Man?

Instead of just beginning this thing with a definition, I've decided to take a different approach. I will instead pretend that you, the reader, has asked me two questions that you didn't really ask me but would considerably aid in my attempt at moving this along without wasting any more of your time reading about how I couldn't figure out a better, less generic way to start the proceedings. What is a Renaissance Man, you ask?

Renaissance Man â&#x20AC;&#x201C; (Noun) A present-day man who has acquired profound knowledge or proficiency in more than one field.


OCTOBER 2010

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What is more than one field? Glad you asked. More Than One Field – (Adjective, Conjunction, Adjective, Noun) Producer, MC, Author, Actor, Businessman, Student of martial arts, chess, and pop culture. I don't think it was a secret, at any point since the Wu-Tang Clan's emergence as a household name in hip-hop music, that they were a force to be reckoned with. However, what may not have

been as easily recognized by some is just how innovative and medium crossing the artistic ideas spewing from Robert F. Diggs' cranium would end up being in the long run. If it were a cartoon, the light bulb that appears above his noggin to symbolize a bright idea would be a 36 million watt explosion blinding everyone within a 40 mile radius and sending glass shrapnel flying into whoever was left standing...so protect ya neck. The Wu-Tang Clan is the epitome of the sum being greater than the individual parts, but if anyone deserves the biggest share of the credit it's definitely Rza. This is a man who had a vision of success straight out of the starting gate. The idea was self-defined as “The 5-year plan”

which involved everyone in the group to dedicate 5 years of their lives to Rza's dictatorial command strategy. The strategy itself: take over the hiphop industry by establishing a successful group and then distributing each individual member out to different record labels to record solo efforts. The advantage to this situation would be that Rza would produce every solo album during the period and each album would have guest spots from other members of the Clan in order to promote the group as a whole while simultaneously

using the money and resources of other record companies to do so. Method Man goes to Def Jam, Ol' Dirty Bastard goes to Elektra, Gza goes to Geffen/MCA and so on and so fourth. Results? The sophomore double disc effort “Wu-Tang Forever” was released at the end of the 5 years and debuted at Number One on the Billboard Charts, sold 615,000 copies it's first week and is currently certified 4x platinum. Throw in the success of the Wu-Wear clothing line and I think we've got a legitimate businessman on our hands. Speaking from the point of view of an aspiring musician, it's hard enough to just make good music. It's rare in the music world that successful music groups write, perform and produce their


OCTOBER 2010

So you've established yourself as a master musician and you've got a hugely successful musical empire, so what's next? Sit back, relax, watch the money roll in and enjoy the finer things in life or become an author and start acting in movies? The first of two books to be penned by Rza was entitled “The Wu Manual” and it gave a comprehensive overview of all things Wu. The groups humble beginnings are covered as well as all of the points of reference in the Wu-Tang universe of which there are many. The book discusses everything from the martial arts as a basis for the groups sound and style as well as a spiritual journey, Islam and associated ideas such as the supreme alphabet and supreme mathematics, comic books and, of course, the all-important game of chess. Next came “The Tao of Wu,” which is more autobiographical and focuses on his spiritual journey and inspiration from Christianity, Buddhism, and Islam, as well as other personal points. Along with writing, he has acted in several movies in the past few years including

American Gangster, Ghost Dog, Coffee and Cigarettes, Funny People and appearing on Chappelle's Show on two different occasions. A martial arts writer/directorial debut called “The Man With The Iron Fist” is in the works and a film about Bobby Digital, the super hero alter ego from the conceptual solo album “Rza as Bobby Digital” may hopefully see the light of day at some point as well.

SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

own music entirely on their own. Let's also throw in the fact that you are the leader of a group with 9 total members who aren't notorious for being polite and well behaved. It's truly amazing to think about the work load of completely creating music from the ground up in a situation like that. The man created a visionary, original sound and wrote, recorded, and arranged some of the most amazing hip-hop music ever made while also being an MC himself. It's also been a constant recreation process from the humble, gritty and minimalistic beginnings of “Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)” and the first round of solo albums, to the glossier more intricate production of “Wu-Tang Forever” and the efforts from then on. The production style of using minimal instrumentation on top of dirty sounding drum beats laced with Kung-Fu samples and old school soul tunes was completely innovative as well. By creating a completely unique approach to producing and recording, Rza established himself as more than just a “rapper,” but as an artist with some of the most classic hip hop albums of all time under his belt for his efforts. That's not even mentioning the movie soundtracks and, well...the list goes on and on.

Being a long time fan of Rza's work has made me put a lot of thought into just how talented he is in such a wide range of artistic mediums but it wasn't until recently that the term “Renaissance Man” began bouncing around in my brain. That seems like a term that is obsolete when used in a serious context and I have always used it in passing as a joke but it seems realistic in this case. Like a lot of my favorite artists, time isn't everyones best friend. Ideas get stale after a while and for easily being one of my favorite bands of all time, Wu-Tang's last couple albums just don't do it for me like they used to. I think there is something to be said though for studying new ideas and actually doing them well and it's undeniable that Robert F. Diggs does a pretty damn good job of pulling them off. Oh you want me to tell you what to check out? Time to get my list on!

The Essential Rza productions, writings and appearances... Wu-Tang Clan – 36 Chambers Wu-Tang Forever Gza – Liquid Swords Raekwon The Chef – Only Built For Cuban Linx Ol' Dirty Bastard – Return to the 36 Chambers Method Man – Tical Ghostface Killah – Iron Man Coffee and Cigarettes (Awesome scene with Rza, Gza, and Bill Murray) American Ganster (Check out the “W” tattoo on his arm!) The Wu-Manual (Extremely comprehensive, it definitely appealed to the obsessive nerd in me) Gravediggaz - 6 Feet Deep


SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

OCTOBER 2010

The World Wasn't the World Anymore Gary Brown


OCTOBER 2010

re-makes the world, a soft and weary voice stopped me: “But do you really want to bring back all that suffering? All that violence and pain and conflict? All that hate and fear and confusion?” It was some hippy chick who was almost cute enough for me to overlook that she was a hippy chick. “The hippy chick is right,” said a Buddhist monk. “There is no point in recreating samsara.” “Yes, let’s think about this,” injected a rabbi. “Can’t we alter the program a little? Say, get rid of Hitler?” They all seemed to agree that the world as it existed before was a bad idea. And they started changing things here and there: a little more rain forest, a little less earthquakes, and so on. Before you knew it, the world wasn’t the world anymore. So I said, “Screw it. Let’s just forget about the world all together and make the best with what we’ve got.” Which turned out to be a book of matches and a pack of birthday candles that a baker had in her pocket. Someone rigged up a conical paper hat, and we took turns having our birthday parties. It was really a lot better than all the traffic and child molesting and terrorism and tropical ailments that we would have had to contend with in the world. Then the weatherman stepped forward. “Well, looks like this Saturday will be the Beginning of the World. So, wear your galoshes for the first eon, guys!” The Darwinists all had a good laugh at that. And then the world began. I suppose you know the rest.

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It was on the ten o’clock news. They stuck it right in with the weather report. “Be sure to dress warm on Tuesday, lows in the teens, and for Wednesday… looks like the End of the World. At least a 90% chance of Apocalypse, so be prepared, everyone. Let’s make it a super week.” My father was angry, as he usually was after he watched the news. “This is the fifth time this winter they’ve called for the End of the World. I’m beginning to doubt there’s any science behind their forecasting at all. Might as well go back to reading animal innards.” “But those animal innards are just so boring,” quipped Mother. “They all come out the same.” She continued to sew, as if she wasn’t going to let the End of the World get her down. There was nothing we could do to stop it. We were just along for the ride at that point. But that didn’t mean we had to like it. I think that’s something to do with free will. So, Thursday morning we all woke up on the beach where you go when there’s no more world. I call it a beach, but the ‘sand’ is disorganized matter; the ‘sea’ is the void. And this is where we go every time the world ends. It’s dreadfully boring, really. This time I was smart enough to back up the world right before the cataclysm ensued. “Hey guys,” I said to Father, Mother and everyone. “I’ve got a back-up.” They seemed pleased with me. “Yes, let’s reload this baby,” said a businessman. As I was about to insert the data cartridge into the device that


SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

OCTOBER 2010

Showdow

at Cherry Grove Retirement Vi

The following is a series of excerpts taken from statements gathered by the local authorities. These are the exact words given by the residents, employees and guests who were present at the Cherry Grove Retirement Village on June 11th 2004 to witness the death of Mr. Oscar Joseph Barnes. -JKW Benson Whales:

I ain’t ner seen an’thin’ like it: two civilized, elderly fellers gunnin’ down one ‘nother. Now don’t get me wrong, I seen my fair share of blood an’ whathavya, being a war veteran twice over, an’ all, but I ain’t ner seen a ol’ man like myself git shot up by ‘nother. Hell, the spectators of the whole dern thing said it was right friendly. Well I say, even in all my years of service to our country, I ain’t ner heard o’ friendly fire bein’ intentional. Ner in my life, I tell ya. It was the derndest thing...[Spits onto the ground]

I tell you what; it was all ‘cause of that yank sumbitch, Windsor. I ner did trust that feller. He jus had this look like there weren’t somethin’ right with ‘im; like a light was on in ‘is head, but no one was home, but not like a crazy person really...though there ain’t no doubt that he had a screw looseÉ oh, hell, it’s hard to explain. I reckon he didn’t need a straightjacket, jus a whippin’ and a good talkin’ to is all. One things fer sure; that sumbitch got everyone riled up and believin’ all the mess he had said. Tellin’ us folks that we’re prisoners in our own bodies and whatnot. Crazy mess. Nonsense, I tell ya. We all shoulda had the sense the good Lord gave us to see that he was nuthin’ but trouble, but I reckon old folks like us like to hear things that sound hopeful. [Spits again] We all here done lived our lives. I reckon it was Oscar what first started to associate with that ol’ loon, Windsor. Oscar had lost his wife ‘bout six months ago an’ was hurtin’ real bad jus like I had done when Arlene passed back in ‘96. He was new to


OCTOBER 2010

illage Compiled and edited by: J. Kirby White

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wn

Michael Fugere Cherry Grove an’ look’d to be needin’ a friend, an’ since nobody weren’t to talk to Windsor too much, I guess Oscar decided to get acquainted with ‘im. It won’t too long after that that the strange mess Windsor was flappin’ his gums ‘bout started to sink into ol’ Oscar’s head. It’s right funny how some fellers will latch on to anyone who seem to have a answer. But livin’ to be this old, you know there ain’t no answer. Jus more questions. Lord knows I got a whole sack full of ’em after meeting Windsor and seein’ what he had done. Frank Stratton Jr.: Well Earl Windsor was – still is, I assume - a rather nice fella, or at least that’s how I’d seen him. He was never much of a talker, though I do remember him having no Southern accent when he spoke in his normal tone of voice. As I recall, someone had said he was originally from somewhere up north. Pennsylvania, I believe. Which I thought was kind of odd with him being so interested – well, obsessed - with Westerns and the way the

movies said cowboys lived. You know, gun fighting, cattle wrangling, and all that. That should have been a warning sign now that I think about it; but like they say, hindsight’s 20/20. The first day he came to the home, he had with him a ton of video tapes, and watched them in the rec room whenever the TV was freed up. I remember the first time I tried to introduce myself to him; he was watching The Searchers with John Wayne, his favorite movie as it turned out. ‘The name’s Frank,’ I told him, and stuck my hand out for him to shake, but his gaze didn’t stray form that darn TV. I pegged him as being hard of hearing and repeated myself a couple a times, but he never looked away. I was rather irritated by that point and raised my voice at him, asking him if he ever heard of Southern hospitality. And to that, he just said, while doing a piss-poor John Wayne impression, ‘have a seat there, pilgrim. Things are just getting’ good.’ I couldn’t help but chuckle at the old fella when he said that with a straight face. I thought it


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SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

may had just been a joke or his senility was kicking in, but that weren’t the case. [Smiles] He was dead serious and despite what some folks will think, he was – is - a sane man. I know that much is true. Gretchen Smith:

Why Mr. Windsor was always a gentleman. He held open doors, stood up when I walked into a room, tipped his Stetson hat when I passed him in the courtyard, he would even help me to my walker when it was out of reach. But I wasn’t the only one to be treated so kindly; all the ladies here at the home were too. Old age had not made him jaded like it has to so many other residents. Heavens, it was a breath of fresh air. If you ask me, I don’t think what he did was wrong. He gave some these folks here something to live for. He gave us a reason to get up each morning, even after many of our friends and families had passed on or abandoned us. We found solace in what Windsor was trying to do. Or at least most of us did. Now don’t misunderstand me; I think it’s an awful shame, what happened to Oscar, but he knew what he was doing when he put on that gun belt. He knew good and well. And I don’t think he’d regret doing it if he were still alive. Now I didn’t know Oscar as well as some. I wasn’t familiar with the hardships he had gone through in his life, but when he met Earl Windsor, he was happy for the first time in heaven knows how long. You could see it his eyes and I found comfort in that.

was: murder. I don’t give a damn what other people tell you. The fact remains Earl Windsor – if that’s even his real name - murdered Oscar Barnes in cold blood. I’ll testify in front of a jury on that. Mark my words, sugar. Benson Whales:

Rachel Harley:

Yes, sir, fifteen years; that’s how long I’ve been an employee here at Cherry Grove. Before that I worked at a retirement community – one not as nice as this one out in Virginia where my husband was stationed while he was still in the Navy. He’s originally from South Carolina. That’s why we made the move here. What do I think about Earl Windsor? [Uncomfortably laughs] Let me tell you something, sugar; in all my years in this profession, I’ve never seen anything like this. I have been witness to many a disturbing act among the elderly: I’ve seen them hit and bite at one another; I’ve seen them try to take there own lives with cutlery and makeshift nooses, but I have never seen one of my residents murder another – and that’s what it

Dern straight he showed me those revolvers. Both of ‘em. And they was right fine pieces of work too. He had two .45 Colts that‘re ol’er than the both of us, but sure as hell looked bran’ new, like he jus walked in a store an’ bought ‘em up that day. He kept ‘em in a ol’ wooden box uner ‘is bed. It had a picture of a feller on a mustang runnin’ down a stage coach etched a top of it. ‘Look here, Ben,’ he sed an’ showed ‘em to me.


JULY 2010 I was here with my son, visiting my father. We try to make it up to see him every other weekend. After my mother died we registered him with the home. He’s never complained, but after what happened today, I’m getting him out of here. I just can’t... [Covers his face with his hands] Good God. I mean, my son plays violent video games, but to see someone shot dead in real life, right in front of you has to be damaging. [Wipes a tear away] He’s only eleven for Christ’s sake! Frank Stratton IV:

SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

‘They was my granddaddy’s,’ he sed, talkin’ like he was tryin’ a talk like me or sumthin.’ Hell, when I asked why he talked like he does, seeing as how he from up North and all, he got real mad and told me ner to call a Texan a filthy yank. I cain’t tell ya if he were playin’ er not. An’ yeah I held ‘em. They was right heavy. It was

It was cool! It was like watching a Wild West movie or something. Two of Pa pa’s friends stood back to back and walked – like this [Makes large strides with his steps] – then they turned and [Forms a gun shape with his thumb and index finger] Pow! They shot at each other. [Laughs] Dad freaked out, but it was awesome. [Points to the police officer’s belt] Is that gun real? Gretchen Smith:

the first time I‘d held a pistol since Ko-rea. It felt odd, like they was sumthin’ wrong to grip a firearm when I won’t at war. I dunno. Er’thing ‘bout that feller was strange, I guess. [Shakes head] No, I dunno where they is nowÉI reckon with Windsor, wherever he may be. Like I sed, son, the whole dern thang is jus strange. Frank Stratton III:

Well he and Oscar became friends rather fast. They were inseparable, watching all those movies and playing cards in the court yard for hours on end. It wasn’t long before Oscar started to wear a cowboy hat like Earl. He even began to talk to everyone in that fake Texas accent like him too. We all liked the two of them, well most of us did. I think Ben down right hated Earl and didn’t want anything to do with poor Oscar once they became pals. Betsy, Fay and I all thought they were very kind. It was nice having a couple of cowboys walking around, watching over us, helping everyone out the best they could. [Sighs] I don’t know what happened between them. Why they did what they did is beyond me. Like I said before, they were real good pals. You don’t shoot your pals, do you? Frank Stratton Jr.:

Well this morning I woke up around six, got dressed, took my medicines, ate breakfast and wheeled out to the court yard. Gretchen and a couple other ladies


OCTOBER 2010

SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

were picking up pecans. (We have a tree back there. It’s a great big thing). Windsor and Oscar were sitting at a bench across from one another. They were both wearing Stetson hats and dusters. [Chuckles] I don’t know how in the hell they could stand it in this heat, but low and behold, they were wearing them. Like a couple of gunslingers. Gretchen strolled over to them with a grocery bag of pecans and offered to bake Windsor a pie. He silently tipped his hat in thanks and turned his attention back to Oscar. I didn’t really think nothing of it at the time, but Oscar looked upset. Come to think of it, he looked down right furious. Whatever Windsor had said to him got him fired up something fierce and made him pop up from that bench. [Points to a picnic table in the court yard] I remember Oscar pushed a flap of his coat aside to that Windsor could fully see his gun. What? No. [Points to his lap] it was in a holster. A leather one. Anyhow, he cocked the hammer and stared his friend down. Eventually Barnes stood up too. Fay Duncan:

Oh yes, sir, he was a fine fellow. We all loved him, especially us girls. [Laughs] Mr. Windsor wasn’t half bad to look at, with those blue eyes and strong chin. He made us feel safe. Safe from what? I don’t know, but I liked it anyhow. And once he and Oscar both became cowboys, oh child, it was wonderful. I swear to you, those hats and coats made them look darn near thirty years younger, strutting around here like they owned the place. And let me tell you, Mr. Windsor spoke the truth. What do I mean by that? Well for starters, he said that we all were running out of things to be thankful for. Most of us had already lost our spouses and were now losing our health. He said we had to live to the fullest and that our lives had kept us as prisoners for far too long. That’s truth if I ever heard it. A following? [Laughs] No, I wouldn’t say that. I mean, they were very well liked around here. [Rolls eyes] Well, Mr. Whales tends to exaggerate. I’d expect him to say some such of a thing, that old curmudgeon. He’s just mean as a snake and country as a stick, and that’s coming from a woman who has lived south of the Mason Dixon Line all her life. I wouldn’t pay him no mind. Mr. Windsor did not have any sort of fol-

lowing, unless you count Oscar. Benson Whales: What? Well she’s a damn lie! [Spits] That sumbitch had a follerin if I er seen one. Now they ain’t had uniforms an’ such, cept Oscar of course. Jus ax Betsy Miller. She kin tell ye; that’s fer dern sure. Betsy Miller: I wouldn’t say that. It won’t like some kind of hokey cult. We just really liked him. And he was right about a lot. Well for starters, he told us that we live the way society tells us: work hard, make babies, raise kids, retire, grow old then die. And we do this without question, without hesitation. We never take a minute to find the real us. What we can be, and who we really are. Windsor knows who he is. Do you? No. That’s just the you you think you are...[Cocks her head to the side]...What medication? Rachel Harley: He paid in cash. That’s right. And he registered himself in too. Well I didn’t question it. He just moved right in. The first day he stayed with us, he didn’t speak in any fake voice or wear any long coats or spurs. He was normal. Real quiet too. But the next morning, he was all dressed up like Wyatt Earp and was tipping his has to all the ladies here, saying, ‘ma’am’ like he was waltzing down the streets of Dodge City a hundred years ago. Yes. That’s right. About twelve o’clock noon is when it happened. Right out there [Points at the court yard] in the court yard. I was making my rounds in the building when I heard some shouting and came out to see what all the fuss was about and found about a dozen residents and guests standing off to one side. They were watching something. A few of them were cheering. Others were screaming in protest. I couldn’t see what it was they were watching at first until I got a little closer. But by that time, Mr. Barnes and Mr. Windsor were already walking – pacing – away from one another. Once I saw the guns in their hands, I ran, shouting at them to stop but... [Sniffles and cries] Excuse me.


OCTOBER 2010

Betsy Miller: I was out there when Oscar got upset. I couldn’t hear everything that Mr. Windsor said. It was something about their friendship, or lack thereof, I suppose. Well whatever it was made him right angry and he got up from where he was sitting. But when Mr. Windsor got up, Oscar went back inside. No. Mr. Windsor didn’t follow him. Frank Stratton Jr.: Well my eldest son, Frank and his youngest boy, Frankie was there visiting me. They came about eleven o’clock or so and sat with me in the court yard, a little after Oscar went inside. The weather was fair, not quite as hot as it had been last week. We sat for a bit talking about Frank’s job and such. Then just as Frankie was telling me about school, Oscar came back out. [Laughs] Frankie asked if it was cowboy day. Earl was standing in the middle of the court yard waiting for him. To be honest, I didn’t even see him standing there until Oscar met him there. There was a minute where they looked at each other, like they hadn’t seen one another for a good long while. My son asked me what was going one, but I couldn’t answer. I couldn’t help but watch them fellas standing there. Two gunslingers, they were. I weren’t the only one who was gawking at them. Everyone else was too. Before you know it, there was a group of people huddled on one side of them like we was watching some sort of game. Oscar and Earl shook hands then turned their back on each other and began to pace in opposite directions. They was taking big ol’ strides, one I know I couldn’t take even if I could still walk proper. I recon it was about twenty steps –or paces, I suppose – that they took. Once they got to the end of them paces they turned to each other and shot. The sound damn near scared my son to death, but Frankie thought it was right entertaining. Earl holstered his gun and watched Oscar fall to the ground. I thought it was a joke. That maybe there was blanks in them pistols. But something – a feeling – said

otherwise. I knew the Oscar Barnes was dead, and he died right over yonder [Points to the court yard] in that patch of grass. No. Nobody tried to stop it. We all just watched. Mrs. Harley came runnin’ up shortly after, hollerin’ for them to stop, but she was a little late. By the time she got up to Oscar, he was gone. I think she checked his pulse to make sure. I could feel my son’s hand on my shoulder and I looked up and saw he was cryin.’ Frankie looked shocked, but not upset in the least. Everyone else, ‘cept Mrs. Harley, had the same look on their face. They were apathetic. One of the people who lived here was just shot to death by another and no one seemed to be upset. It was like it was meant to be or something. Then it started to rain... I didn’t even see the clouds gathering before hand, but the sky just opened up and spilt out a tremendous downpour. The rain made the barrel of Oscar’s pistol steam up as he laid there still as can be. No. I didn’t see where Earl Windsor went. Everyone was looking at Oscar, just wondering if he was really dead – which he was. I don’t think we even noticed he was gone until Mrs. Harley asked where he was when she didn’t see him after checking on poor ol’ Oscar. Benson started to shout at us then, telling all of us that we were a bunch of fools and that we shoulda seen this comin.’ I hate to say it, but the mean ol’ bastard was – is – right. The strangest thing about it – which I know it’s hard to take the measure of something like this and even harder to determine what the strangest thing is – was that when all off us took our eyes off Oscar to look around for Earl, Oscar’s gun had done disappeared. That’s right. The damn thing vanished into thin air. It was there one minute, but once we looked away; poof! It was gone. It was the damndest thing I think I have ever seen in my life, sir.

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Can I go now? That’s all the statement I really want to give if you don’t mind...

The rest of the testimonies all coincide with the same scenario; the man that was referred to as Earl Windsor had fled the scene of the crime after he “murdered” Oscar Barnes. Despite the eye witness reports, the investigation could not prove foul play. No murder weapon was foundÉnor was there a bullet retrieved from the entry wound in Mr. Barnes’ body. The whereabouts of Mr. Windsor remain a mystery. -JKW


SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

OCTOBER 2010

Friends Dillon Mullenix

Opening the closet with a thrust of his good arm exposed a black bird to the light in the room, cast in the hue of a yellow bulb. He got the bird and walked with it over to a bed of red satin pillows and lay down. “How are you, Foley?” the man asked the little bird. The man’s name was Merle. The bird didn’t move. There was white plumbers tape around its beak. Its eyes were grey and cold.

“Sorry to hear that, Foley. My day was pretty decent. I’m glad you care, the woman at the super market didn’t care when I couldn’t reach the cans on the top shelf. She wouldn’t help me. Can you believe that?” There was a long silence and Merle started to get mad. His mind was talking to him loudly. Merle thought the bird said something derogatory about his missing arm and short legs. No woman had to help a


OCTOBER 2010 “Nothing illegal, I need your help for God’s sake.” “What is it?” “My bird won’t drink any of the cocktails or beer I’ve tried to give him. I think something is wrong.” The vet, stunned, asked, “Does your bird normally drink alcohol?” “Every day. Foley just loves it.” “That’s probably not very healthy, it may be why he is sick.” “I don’t think so at all, that’s preposterous. He’s been doing it his whole life, and for him to suddenly cease is crazy.” “Well, I don’t know wha…” “Come over here immediately. I’ll make tea. You’ve got to, I’m begging you. I mean, it’s to save a life.” When the vet came and looked at the bird he told Merle that Foley was dead, and looked like he had been for some time, seeing as he was stuffed and all. After the news had been internalized by Merle, he broke down and jumped out of a window, but they were on the first floor and all he did was fracture his ankle and knock the air out of himself. The vet helped him back inside and gave him the number to a shrink after Merle had regained his composure and found his breath. He was taking it all very hard and kept hyperventilating and sobbing, dropping the shrink’s number every time the vet went for the door. Finally, the vet was able to subdue Merle’s emotions long enough to escape the house and its little horrors. “It’s just you and me now, Foley, the doctor is gone, he doesn’t want to take care of you. He gave me this number of someone who wants to help us however, his name is, if I’m reading this right, Randy. He lives in Greenwood. Here is the number, will you call him on your contraption Foley, and then I’ll make you a drink and we can sing together. I know how much you love to sing Foley, maybe we can sing that song by Lucinda Williams, Drunken Angel. You like that song, don’t you Foley?” The blackbird lay on its side by the drink the vet hadn’t begun to drink. Merle looked at the glass, shook his head, took it and then drank it. The sun was far beyond the hills now, and all anyone could hear were the washing motions of a disturbed ocean trying to beat its way into the land.

SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

man like that, Foley appeared to say. “Gimp.” “Fuck you,” he snarled, and hurled Foley across the room, only to retrieve him again, and pet his head while he apologized profusely and cried, “You’re the only friend I have. I’m sorry I hurt you, Foley, will you ever forgive me?” The blackbird seemed to nod, “Yes,” in reply and Merle got real happy and red. “I think this is cause for celebration,” he said. “Wait here.” Merle put the bird down and ran off to the kitchen with his only hand in the air, daintily. He got a bottle of pomegranate schnapps from the cupboard and made two drinks of it, mixed with club soda and lime. “I think this will do the trick,” he said, putting a drink in front of Foley. Merle sipped heavily at his own. “I saw the best shirt today,” he carried on, “It had turquoise sequin work on it and navy blue sleeves. I wanted it so bad, Foley, you have no idea. But I can’t justify $300, even if it is fashionable.” The phone rang. “I don’t like that machine, Foley, why must you insist on having one? It always bothers me when I’m trying to bury myself in reverie. Won’t you pick it up, please, be a doll?” Eventually it stopped ringing. “Thank you, Foley,” Merle said, “Who was it?” Foley didn’t answer. His beak was still in the cocktail. “Don’t you like your drink?” Merle sounded worried. “If you don’t like it I’ll make you another one. Jesus Christ, we’re not in the Sahara. We have choices.” Merle took the drink from the bird and drank it. “Can’t let it go to waste,” he said, slurping the last bit out of his beard with a great sucking sound. He went into the kitchen again and this time brought out two beers. The bird didn’t drink any beer either, and Merle had to drink them too. He was beginning to become more concerned about Foley the drunker he got. Was his friend sick? He called a vet. “Hello?” “My friend Foley is dying, I think.” “Then call 911.” “No, he can’t go to a people doctor; they won’t know what to do with him.” The doctor was suddenly confused. What was he dealing with? “I’m not going to take anything illegal…” the vet said.


SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW OCTOBER 2010

JOHNATHA


OCTOBER 2010

SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

AN JAMES


OCTOBER 2010

SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

“Art happens exponentially…I’m just trying to keep up.” That’s Jonathan James on art, momentum, inspiration -- whatever. It’s a good quote, one that uses a heady, but not inaccessible word like “exponentially,” while implying that art is something that happens to us rather than the conventional perspective of it as a hobby, pastime or constructive process. Whenever we encounter an artist here at Seahorse we like to do two things: we give them the opportunity to provide us with all the quirky, extraneous or elaborate personal information they desire as well as asking them a simple question. What is your philosophy of art? It’s not an unusual sentence and, unlike Jonathan’s reply, it is slightly pretentious…can we say even potentially “douchey?” Can I say that here? Hell yes, I can, this is my show. I understand the question seems contrived, but the responses are often elegant, surprising or hilarious. Jonathan said “Art happens.” He’s just trying to keep up.

It conjures images of a kid flying down a steep grade on a big wheel tricycle, pedals revolving like a helicopter propeller, just trying to stay in the seat. Or, not to draw too close a connection to the moniker of this magazine, a rider at the rodeo, trying not to get kicked out of the saddle. I like that. It makes art seem wild, dangerous somehow. It becomes a force of nature rather than a construct of civilization. Society’s artistic pursuits become less about creativity and more about containing an explosion. Artists, their schools, beliefs, experiments and the like, are not creators or divinators of some ancient holy fire so much as someone harnessed to that fire, suddenly responsible to let it out at safe intervals, like the spillway of a dam. Art happens exponentially…like temperature’s rising, building pressure from trapped vapors and excess gases, there’s always someone, or at least some contraption, designed to release the pressure in small, calculated, safe portions. Jonathan James, in his way of thinking, is somewhere between that kid plugging the hole in the


OCTOBER 2010

As for the art, is it safe to say he’s landed squarely and solidly between Kandinsky and Ralph Steadman? The work is swinging on Olympic rings between these two men and their tradition, it dismounts, barrel rolls through the air three times and plants two solid feet on the mat. The judges score…a 9.7! Excellent form and execution. Maybe I’m too easily pleased. Maybe I’m just Gonzo enough to see Steadman’s incantations hidden behind the veil of every eyelid, lip curl, hairdo, brick wall, library pillar, street sign and steaming manhole I encounter. Or maybe Mr. James really has performed an excellent landing. At times the work is elegant, refined and purposeful. Others it is sloppy like blood spatter or the remnant wax smear left over after a night of burning too many candles ‘til they spill over onto your mantle…bringing to mind reflections on Jackson Pollack and a question as to which had more ability -- the man, or the candle. But that’s getting off track. The point, ladies and gentlemen, is that like most things in art, there is a duplicity here, a tight connection to two opposing schools of thought: technical skill or accuracy vs. momentum, textural ferocity, or improvisation. It’s a line often explored and debated, and the conflict between the two, well represented in the plain of Jonathan’s canvas, adds the intensity needed to sell us on what would otherwise be diagrams and blobs of pigment. It is the contradiction that makes it exciting. Which, I suppose, is the case for most of us. Like good artwork, we are all simultaneously sinner and redeemed, consumer and compost, and on and on forever. Describing these images

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dam with his finger and a 20th Century doomsayer leading us all through blaring sirens into his bomb shelter. And maybe that’s more accurate than haughty museum dweebs or beret-laden pointed goatees yammering on about externalizing the turmoil of childhood or vocalizing the same plights of the human condition we’ve seen represented since scribbles of blood and clay in lonely desert caves. Just a thought.

in text leaves my thoughts be broken, my speech stammering and fragmented. Some free association from my formative years:

Cloud. Puddle. Cuddle. Waddle. Water. Fodder. Psychedelic. Psychotropic. Spatial arrangements. Spatial awareness. Space, the Final Frontier. The Stars at night are big and bright… deep in the heart of Texas. I see lips, faces. Some grotesque, some enticing. Expressions are blurred. Planetary formations are recognizable, but skewed as though stretching over the event horizon of a black hole. It’s all a practical, logical breakdown. Perhaps


SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW OCTOBER 2010


OCTOBER 2010

What else we know is sketchy at best. An Maryland painter, draftsman, photographer, and printmaker, Jonathan attended schools like the Academy of Art in San Francisco, perhaps lending him the refinement and accuracy present in the work. But the psychedelic wax clouds and black hole structural parodies, maybe they were there all along. For some, life is about grinding yourself down to something bearable, normal and easily maintained. For others it is about sharpening your weirdness and only getting weirder. Whatever the case may be, for Jonathan we know that art happens and he’s doing his best to keep up. Maybe the strangeness is happening to him along with everything else. He finally rounded out his answer to the philosophy of art question by saying, “With my work I only strive to further my knowledge of this world around me. I don’t mean to change the world, or how anyone views it. Though if anyone could take anything from my work I would hope it to be a new insight into their own lives.” Perhaps, in the end, the strangeness comes from the fact that Jonathan doesn’t come across like a man with an exaggerated vision of the self, in his work or his correspondence, but as a

man that wants vision to find him through the act of making art. Similarly, he wants all of us to experience a vision of ourselves through the act of viewing the work. It seems backward, or at least rare, in a world of starry-eyed graduates from a system of ego and self-absorption, to encounter someone that is telling us that he is trying to find a message somewhere, not deliver one. In the long running discourse regarding the nature of art, perhaps this should be logged in as viable and worth noting -- that art isn’t about self-propulsion, it is about self-discovery. All we can do

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due to the aforementioned contradiction in terms. Perhaps because the artist himself is strange. When asked for biographical information we were only told, “My parents are galactic space monkeys.” And, “I spend my free time arranging snail shells into hyper realistic American architecture.”


SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

OCTOBER 2010

Pity Mach Roadtripp A

((Strangle your children with extension cords and burn their college money in the backyard)) I sleep through the dawn, but the sound of ball bearings in the dryer keeps me awake through the night. The dampness permeates everything, amplifying the smell of shit and wet dog as we sleep above the new mexican soil, swarmed by flies who have a stronghold in the rotting watermelon rind just outside the screen door. They feast

Clark on the sugar of discarded beer bottles and the remnants of a barbecue I was never invited to, they out number us twenty to one. Out there, walking the streets, opulent displays of self pity jangle their charm bracelet encrusted wrist, complete with their miniature riding crops and Mercedes emblems. Symbols ingrained since the creation of our memories,


OCTOBER 2010

SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

hines, ppers Anon.

display our travels not our boundaries, just as dictionaries should have blank pages.

Yonder a cellphone doth ring. How it cripples the silence. How the light pollution plays off the night sky as the drunken cackles of high society mutants tumble through the painted gutter. I listen to the mating call of ambulances and the backfiring exhausts, sputtering a calming song to the other metal husks resting beside their curbs. Like all things they are designed to fail, irreparable or obsolete. I worked for a company once. They sold machines, marketed to the under educated, who were then charged at least 50 dollars to ask how it worked and it was my job to tell them as little as possible . I was to coax them into a world of electronics that devalue before you can even ask how much they cost. Americans don’t make things anymore. Everyone with practical skills lives overseas. We can only hope for a sale at whalemart, which can only be justified by a direct correlation to a punitive action taken by the outsourced management.

We swim in alcohol streams and huff electromagnetic interference. Stopping to slurp the bleach off the counters. Inspecting the genetically enchanted apples and pine fruits, as I pose for the cameras swing from the rafters like a distant relative. Ye gods, protect me from terrorists, and expired milk. Meanwhile, our pride and indulgence rot out back where the rest of the society gets their produce. ((Tie your shoelaces tight and cross yourself)) We live with our insides out, passing notes and currency. We chase vapor trails and dollar menus, scour the city for the cheapest gas. We smile through false teeth and glass eyes. Our gluttony is rewarded with greed, the cycle repeats and every 4 years we turn the swivel head a few degrees.

Waldo yellow circle, red square, thirteen stripes, golden arches and swastika devils. We stare blankly at the dictionary, the capstone to our understanding of language, chided as a “good read” or some other feeble humour, comparable to airline jokes. Not enough pictures, broad strokes, simple answers. Black and white. Our maps should

While we flail through this life, threatened with scarcity, like screaming invalids being led into a quiet room, we only find that there is no end. There is no death. Energy cannot be destroyed nor created, this is a closed system, however massive, functioning on a level of understanding we cannot even begin to correctly perceive. Regardless of that, Instead of paying taxes and parking tickets, we should be tying our thoughts to bricks and sailing them through the bulletglass encasing the halls of power. ((Don’t think about swallowing your tongue while you’re on acid)) We sleep in the audience of insects, our caravan open to catch the wind, but we feel nothing but the breeze from a 2 dollar fan. Our makeshift curtains hang there as our naked bodies sweat out our frustration and attract the mosquitoes that will bite us in our sleep. As trucks with bright lights and drunk drivers shake our bed, we huddle close in the loving glow of the freedom of ourselves.


SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

OCTOBER 2010

S ta t u e s Victoria Moyer

She had been teaching the class for a substantial amount of time, let’s say around two decades. Each term she would decide two different projects for the class of beginning carvers. Over time, the projects would blur together, or she would grow tired of coming up with new ideas. Originally, she had been a professional artist when she started this teaching job, but like a disease it had slowly incapacitated her. It had destroyed her urge to create, because she began to realize that you could throw any two symbols together and it’d be just like something else. Each project was always similar to the project before, nothing ever blew her mind. She saw the source of each piece that the students presented. Nothing was out of this world. Nothing was “unknown” to her. It was as though she had been an experimental jazz musician, but the longer she experimented, she realized that

music is just notes rearranged over and over again. But she was an artist, and it was art that had become mundane. She could look at each piece, and from that piece alone completely dissect the unaware student’s very soul. Each piece was like vomit from the subconscious, but most students were so unaware of their subconscious that their subconscious was more like their unconscious, and only upon the day of critique would she really draw the true meaning out of the unsuspecting student, whom afterwards would typically act as though they were coddling an open wound. As an example, this piece made by Helga, the bone, represents the bone that she broke when she was five, which really represents her relationship with her father, who neglected to take her to the hospital until five days later when she was still unable to move. Obviously, this


OCTOBER 2010 reverie since 1967, when they had first met at a Grateful Dead show. Her hair had been long and brown then, and she had had her supple chest painted in psychedelic bursts of orange and yellow and neon pink, with flowers intertwined between the shades of color. The memory still gave him a slight erection. He bit his fingernails. Suddenly sirens flooded the air, and firemen and cops came rushing into the backyard, stopping her just in time, as she had been about to enter the fire. Her husband looked around, and saw that neighbors were taking pictures. The camera crews arrived. He ran outside to defend his wife, grabbing a kitchen towel to protect her virtue. Yet, at the same time he wanted to take her in his arms and make sweet passionate love to her. The newscasters had begun interrogating his wife as the police put her in handcuffs. She struggled, trying to get free, and shouted, “Art is shit! Art is shit!” Her husband was flabbergasted, and his hands shook. “Arlene!” he cried. “Arlene!” He held the towel around her groin, leaving her loose stomach and sagging breasts exposed. It was as though his wife didn’t see him. She had become blind with a supernatural hatred. How could it possibly be that the one thing that she loved most in the world was the most false- a cyclical thieving litany of co-opted symbols? Art for her had been a mystical exploration of the soul, and now she saw it for what it was… A cheap way to deal with symbolism; instead of living within the world of symbolism, artists relegate themselves to life inside of Plato’s Cave. In this moment, she had broken through, and she felt like a newborn child. The question was, ‘Now, how do I live?’ This question was silenced as soon as it began, for she was shoved in the back of the police car and the sirens began to wail. As the car drove off, she tried to spot her husband amidst the crowd.

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still bothers poor Helga, and only during the critique does she realize how painful it is to broach the subject of the bone. And the teacher secretly rolls her eyes. It’s not as if the teacher doesn’t empathize, no, in fact, when she pursued her teaching degree, it was really because she wanted to enact art therapy in a large scale. But now she is a factory worker, confronted with the same packaged tender meat over and over again, or perhaps you could say it was the equivalent of being a priest, sitting in confession, and year after year hearing thirteen year old boys confess to thinking about girls. In the teacher’s case, it is pain, each artwork represents some particular pain, or fear, or neurosis. She was amazed at people’s need to confess, but it was an unaware need; a sort mental purge. At one point, she decided that the students with the greatest urge to create were often the most neurotic and egomaniacal people she had ever met. This was when she lost her fire, because she realized that as an artist she had been no different, and that being a professional artist meant fostering a cult of personality. Thus she experienced her own ego death. During this period she went into her backyard with each of her sculptures, one by one, and destroy them. Sometimes using a drill to slowly deface all of the details before going in with the hammer. Then she would grind down whatever remained until it was a fine dust. Her husband watched through the curtains, bewildered. The noise made him jumpy, and somewhat uncomfortable. After she had destroyed all of her statues, she carefully disassembled her tools. Tenderly putting them back in their cases, she closed the door of the shed, and sprinkling gasoline around it, she lit the shed on fire. She bowed down before the sacred temple that crackled as flames leapt about it. She sang, she cried, and she began to dance around. She took off all of her clothes. Her husband was still glued to the window. He hadn’t seen her in such a


SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

OCTOBER 2010

THIS MONTH . . . Y R O T S I H IN

orian, st hi eo od R se or ah Se l ia fic of e from th k Moffett Patric

October 3rd 1995

And the Verdict is...not guilty or The Juice is loose! Has it really been 15 years since O.J. killed his wife Nicole Simpson and Ron Goldman? Apparently, because thats what the math says. What's the best way to get away with stabbing two people to death? It's a simple equation folks: Heisman Trophy + 2000 yard season + racist police detective + incompetent prosecution + multi-million dollar defense team + 2 Naked Gun Movies รท Lance Ito = a complete mockery of the judicial system. But dont worry, friends. The law did catch up with him in the end. O.J. was found guilty in the subsequent civil trial and had to pay the victim's families 33 million dollars. In 2007, The Juice made yet another good life decision and decided to walk into a Vegas hotel room and rob some people at gun point. Simpson claimed that he was just trying to retrieve some stolen property but was found guilty of multiple felonies and is currently serving a 9 year prison sentence. Way to go Nordberg, you get away with murder and then go to jail a decade later for armed robbery. Solid work.

October 3rd 1982

Scott Weiland runs the Detroit marathon backwards in just under 5 hours. I know what you're thinking, a 15 year old heroin addict ran a marathon backwards? Impossible. It turns out that this guy was not the oft arrested lead singer of the Stone Temple Pilots and Velvet Revolver, just a guy who likes to run. Not nearly as entertaining but impressive nonetheless. How in the hell do you run a marathon backwards anyway? This guy must have been bouncing off parked cars like a pinball machine. It would be great fun to watch Scott Weiland of STP run a doped up backwards marathon but it turns out his real name is Scott Richard Kline and that kind of ruins it. How about this instead: an all time heroin addict backward 100 yard dash with Hendrix, Bradley Nowell, Cobain, Weiland, and Keith Richards. I'll take Hendrix by a bandana.

October 14th 1912

Theodore Roosevelt gets shot while campaigning in Milwaukee. Teddy had a glasses case and a folded speech the pocket of his coat which


OCTOBER 2010

October 9th 1940

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slowed the bullet. Even though he was wounded, he insisted on making the speech before going to the hospital to have it removed. Today I got pissed about the amount of traffic on my way home form work. This crazy bastard got shot and THEN made a speech (from paper with a bullet hole in it!) and THEN went to the hospital. This is why old people hate young people. John Lennon is born in Liverpool England. Apparently he was a musician and activist of some significance. I had never heard of him, but I checked into the music. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s pretty good.

October 31st 1864

Nevada becomes the 36th state. It seems fitting that the state which so openly embraces our sinful insanity should be born on a day that symbolizes the same. The original Hallows Eve was a time to celebrate harvest and prepare for the upcoming winter. The current version tends to lean more towards asking strangers for candy or dressing up like a pirate or a witch and waking up in a bathtub covered in unidentifiable fluids. In Nevada, there are multiple cities where one can easily have this experience. Head to any of them for more than three days and it is a mathematical fact that you will wake up in a bathtub or covered in blood. If you go twice in one year you are guaranteed to catch Chlamydia and be stabbed. If you go for the jackpot (3 visits plus) you are positively sure to lose all your shit and get buried alive in the desert amongst the scorpions and centipedes. The Lake Tahoe area is nice though.

Band of the Month:

Ghost of a Saber-Toothed Tiger, Sean Lennons new release with Charlotte Kemp Muhl. Find it and Listen.

Movie of the Month:

Millers Crossing, marking the 20th anniversary of the Coen Brothers great. John Turtorro is money, Albert Finney is fantastic, and Gabriel Byrne gets pummeled.

Poem of the Month:

The only way to drown a clown is to hold his head in a pool of frowns so when the clowns surround your town make sure that you are feeling down, down enough to drown a clown.

Its Crocktober again people, put some really good food in a crockpot and stew it till you are sick. Be warm, be happy, be alive.


SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

OCTOBER 2010

Beer Bottled James Day


OCTOBER 2010

SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

Songs

Art auctions Tart auctions Taught cautions Caught rations

Framed cyclists’ in traffic wall shock

This year’s crop cops out Cowardy custard’s Tardily cusses Brokered with sticks and bones Brokenly pricked and boned Aleatory canals Lechery amongst the lichen Reputedly off camber on Hampstead Heath Tick tock trick talk Time mimes in silence’s license Facts acts and who knows what Night might light. A true brittle par on A grass puttered green Splutter mutter Bed whine Lover’s loaves transubstantiate Secrecy’s sorcery’s plush Slap-dash Implausible faces Say daily there graces Raven mad hawking Reifies the tart-house raffles

Criminal cheesed off At gasping guinea give away Photo of course lined up Achilles’ heel smashed through Thetis’ teeth

Striated through the arbour The brambles catch flesh Sesquipedalian pedlars Cycle through false fleshy fruits Tarmac car parks

Electric street lamentation Gasping through a brawl Archly darkening the dawn Sweetly salted waltzes In back-row cinema seats

A school of birds Preaching to the saints appall Those still up at dawn Sickly pale in the second twilight Tweet tweet twittering So sweetly heard wrong

With secret impatience I climbed over a style Fielding counting sheep Underneath my window I listen to the songs inside beer bottles

Leguminous leggings mellifluous mittens angelic anoraks A winter’s tipple


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OCTOBER 2010 Aphrodisiac oysters and endorphine conversation Appetisingly analgesic under the armpit apples The most distasteful thing we ate that night was love Gluttonous gabbling Gelatinising gobbling Highfalutin gluten Reprehensible dispensables Apprehended and violently recycled By mental environmentalists Nimbly mumbling out hexes and curses The witches watch the twitching copse A death rattle pitched on a tambourine A coffee cup fuck Burnt on a watermelon pyre Told in pink marshmallow camp Stories ghost past us in the night Dance a cancan with me Over a coca cola A piece of culled luck Caked in clucking Lawn tennis club poems Moping about on the greens You caught me out Hollering holiness in the holly Eristic erotics Erratic and erethtic Bibliographic bibelots

t Rusty suffering First-rate frustration Friable vanities Lowing in the wind Ruminating molars Chewing ruddy thoughts Freshly grated gloaming Sprinkled too short for marksmen Shield my hairs From those cattle shears Fennel perennial plant Poisoning green ears With absinthe tears Upon an eiderdown Hit me in my silent spot With your chicken drumsticks Goofy for food Diving over a cliff To swim in lumpy porridge Plaintive mewing of the alley cats At the pips of starlets In my cul-de-sac The dawn birdsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; hay-fevered singing With salt-water words Balm for angry eyes


OCTOBER 2010

Plummeting plumage Floats on shotgun smoke A strolling skunk Out stealing tragic cones returns Orange hoops and dirty white Eating beastly milk Reading serialised breakfast crimes Snuggle into a womanâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s beard And snack a crumby comfort Flannels steeped in ginger Tiptoe away From maudlin washerwomen To hear Mediterranean music Cleansed from a mandolin Tough music sniffed from black-eyed beauties From Cistercian silence Darkly scanned devotion lines The shady sickle cells Of amnesiac rapes Steamy incense Pared into license Collated banality Double blooded brothers In a swarthy fanfare At carnival parade Suck up in a shared straw Quivering lightly Malted lovemaking Come and share a car seat with me

SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

In the downy light


SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

OCTOBER 2010 Drawn into a dreary dawn

Tack the cat to the wall And out with the kettle Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re going for beers and skittles tonight The rackets of the racquets Popping off at court

Insulated by the hedges No one could begrudge A moment of love on the lawn

Lutulent lines Harping on the wind Bunions crescendo Resounding with grassy teamwork Sagging raspberry kisses

The foxes watched on entertained As we hung the laundry out to dry Trotting about us in ragtime

Deprecatory in intention but glossily forgotten Serving in a pea-soup fog

Put carpet down over The hole in my mettle

Kick it dirt tired darling Lances casting Lots in the dark

Pebble-dash plasters Higgeldy-piggeldy on a freshly erased face Would you mind me too much to Take the next dance

At a dinner table battle Red in the sunset The famous cuirassier Is circulating weakly

Bat on pad and bread and butter Underneath a willow tree Looking down a tea river Bending gracefully out to sea

Killing miles Talked underneath an apprehension

He was looking very dapper Jigging with the local slapper Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll give you cold comfort In the noontime heat

Rashly cleansed and mangled Chasing through a parking place A brush of your hair Locked me into a shrubbery Anal channels

Callous plash In raucous plush surroundings Lapping around in the shrubbery

Having a bawl In an orgiastic tantrum Outside the shopping mall

t

Scramming through the tea leaves You told me about obstetrics At the local bistro

t


OCTOBER 2010

Emotive sloshing Around in a dairy swill The dunce dunked Into an ink pot On a stub legged stool A hyper hypostasis At work milking Insipidly tipsy Tottering down the darkened lane

Girded and guarded Against the daguerreotype Tinned and dented We cask a frown

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Maundering money Poshly rasping Amidst the cigar smoke I spent my combs Upon a balustrade Watching the sinking sea

Win a glut Become a cribbage magus She sung with gusto Trilling in taffeta Glittering for the guests

A whisky tumbler and a piano tune Resorted to on a holiday Crated traces of truffles left An indelible trifle

Basket flowers cycled home from school Their blossoms blustering away

Rifle through a fillet Of my steam-engine And don’t you worry about Packing the horsepower

Caress my cosmetics Under the apple tree

Please put your pyjamas on And come to my cartoon party

Kicking tired Dithering over a Ceylon tea

t

A coxcomb blackballed With arid daring By a fisherman’s friend

Who writes the songs inside beer bottles

Underneath a platter shadow Making certain arrangements

Daughty damsels Prancing over the carrot patch

t A virago retinue Crying in the town A shot in the roses Marked the hopeful orison Of a carapaced rodent Deodorised at the cliffs Flicking pebbles at the crabs

Fortune telling from the tarot pack Bragging on the radio About a tasty tune

Mooting about a nettle stew

Vacantly rapping on a shattered lassi Gaps in a slight At a lover’s tryst

Your stylus scratched me on my modus vivendi


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Bickering in the dikes over our amanuensis Dunes deciphered Shivering in the sands To that anarchistic horn

An archival metempsychosis Petering out of an archetype Draughty in a queue With counterfeit crickets Aisle a yes at me As when we first met

Ewes unable to mother a moo or a baa

t

Just about hole out In a hobby-horse duel

Crinoline choirs Raucously declaiming The five oâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;clock news A gin nudge Set me off again

Teasingly gorge In a summer time shack Blokes eating cloves Covet the garlic girls

Clover me over And bowl me a ball I can hit With my feather duster bird Leisurely larvae In gold button livery Leathery blather In lava lather

t


OCTOBER 2010

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SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW OCTOBER 2010


OCTOBER 2010

SEAHORSE RODEO FOLK REVIEW

Dear Revivalists,

In the act of pursuing our experiment in art promotion, time has become increasingly relative. Occasionally, it has expanded to such a point that a day has seemed longer than some years. Working diligently can stretch a single second to the point of terror. Yet, time is always responsible in maintaining its own balance and the elaborate, maddening, bulbous expanse of time is careful to snap back, collapsing on itself and racing all of us here through hours, or even days. Then, suddenly, you realize it is October and it’s been months since you started what you were working on. Many things have happened. Almost all of them good. As it stands now we have put the finishing touches on our sixth monthly issue, we have met a lot of interesting, unusual and talented people, and the project progresses at the rate of our planet around the sun. It seems intensely fast in theory, but slow, tacit, even unnoticeable here on the ground.

To date we have learned a great deal about what works and what does not. We have begun to take more care in the design, appearance and strangeness of the magazine itself. We continue to attract a more and more specific array of writers, artists and readers. Things are shaping up nicely. As ever, the goal is to build resources to aid in the success of each one of our artists on an individual level while enhancing the reach and prowess of Seahorse itself. And maybe our efforts are finally starting to take root. This January we launch The Seahorse Rodeo Circus Theatre at the Water Heater here in Portland, Oregon. It will be a veritable symphonic medley of gritty music, jazz scuba instructors, Seahorse writers and poets, artist stage corruptors, fire twisters, tambourine rattlers and projections of film, paintings, sculpture, cartoons and live reporting on a wide silver screen. It will also double as the book launch for American Bastards, a novel by me, your humble editor. We are intensely excited and cannot wait to have everyone out for the event. That said, spots are still available for people interested in getting involved. You need only send a word and we can talk about your spot in the Main Event. And, in the way of event planning, a road tour is still in the works and looking more ironclad by the hour.

That’s it for updates. We value each and every one of you for your support, readership, ideas, complaints and card houses. Don’t hesitate to write in with ideas, suggestions, questions, or requests. Seahorse is an open door and we want to hear from everyone with a heart for what we are trying to accomplish. This project, as always, is about putting the power of self-determination back in the hands of artists by uniting us under one banner, enabling us to share ideas and resources, and daring everyone to make something a little less familiar and a little more than great. Yours, Trevor Richardson Editor-in-Chief

The Seahorse Rodeo Folk Review  

October 2010 Issue

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