The March Of The Immoral Compass

'Color War Rally' by Jay SchwartzThe March Of The Immoral Compass

Onward to the march she came to share solidarity,

eventually to be burned by another’s insincerity.

She fled, her brain inflamed;

the scene, it was insane.

Twas better for her to defy her moral compass, I confess,

than choke on the evening’s immoral and errant excess.

 

Oh, but what she saw and sensed …

Oh, what she beheld that made no sense:

Loons, full moons and fire …

… a city lead to mire:

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The Gist and Jest of Jazz and Death

'Summertime Jazz' by Jay Schwartz“Over all, I think the main thing a musician would like to do is give a picture to the listener of the many wonderful things that he knows of and senses in the universe.”
– John Coltrane
 
“I am not afraid of death, I just don’t want to be there when it happens.”
– Woody Allen

 

As a writer and someone who tends to ‘feel and think’ his way through life, I have certain subjects I often feel compelled to write significantly about since they intensely stir the very core of my existence. Today, I’m referring to jazz and death – the former with love, the latter with fear. Time to connect the dots.

Please note that this essay is not the big magnum opus I plan on writing one day on these topics, but merely my attempt to broach related issues of an existential nature (breathe, breathe, breathe). In fact, I’m quite aware that in all likelihood I will probably never write what I’d like to, since I’m mindful of the fact that any attempt to do so would fall short … simply because jazz and death are both larger than life. Moreover, descriptions of jazz are just as elusive as rationalizations of death. Most literature provides the gist, but misses the jest. That’s where I come in.

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A Life Saver To The Poor Souls Drowning In Bile Flavored Kool-Aid

“To ‘choose’ dogma and faith over doubt and experience is to throw out the ripening vintage and to reach greedily for the Kool-Aid.” 
– Christopher Hitchens
“When we do not expect anything we can be ourselves. That is our way, to live fully in each moment of time.”
– Shunryu Suzuki

 

We often ask ourselves who we are. We search. We find. We lose grasp of ourselves … and then we look some more. We develop a sense of our identity from patches of notions steeped in whimsical memories of long ago … or in razor-edged fragments of experience we have gained over the years. We assemble ourselves and then behold our grand psyche … or our refined psychosis. We really have no clue and eventually attack ourselves for our own ignorance.

I like t think that I used to know who I was, long ago … long before I could sense others. Long before they would reach out with their claws and talons to whisk me away far from myself … far from my nature … far from my true being. Poor me. Poor poor pitiful me.

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Decluttering Clogged Clingy Clutchers

What lies in tatters,
trouble be known.
Seeking some wisdom,
so far from home.
It’s been a long time not comin’.
A heavy cross to bear.
A long road of spinning wheels,
leading nowhere.
– Jay Schwartz (A Pocket Full Of Holes)

It’s time denude yet another myth about life with the following reality check: life is not always what you make of it. Whoever said it was was just being pretentious. Most people who are born into poverty stay in poverty. Most people who are born into middle class households stay in middle class households … unless of course they slip into poverty. Very few really ever get ahead or even make it out alive.

It’s the truth. You know it. I know it. We all know it. Nevertheless, we feign denial, shake our heads and cry “no, no, no” and desperately want to believe that ‘change’ is just around the corner or that hope springs eternal. It’s not folks. Sticking your head in the ground like an ostrich only makes it’s easier to lie down in your grave. And, the morbid reality is that ‘life sucks and then you die’.

The poor and the homeless know one thing all too well, ‘you can’t take it with you when you go’. The rest of us, however, find ‘comforting denial’ in our possessions which we accumulate to build up a fortress of sorts in order to keep out intruding thoughts and sobering realities … until the walls come tumbling down and we take up residency on skid row. (Pregnant pause) Oh, did I mention I was moving?

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The Silence Of The Pews

Prologue:

Inebriated with thoughts of past indiscretions, a pedestrian, his given name ‘Durwood’, bumbles into a place of worship … on the eve of the winter solstice. Upon entering, he is met by a tall gent wearing a frock holding a just lit candle. The wax drips. The scents of bourbon, musk and Cornish hen float in the air.

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Durwood: My but it’s awfully quiet in here.

Scratch: ‘Tis true. So, did you come here to get blessed or what?

Durwood: (hands in pocket) Well, uh, I was thinking more along the lines of absolution.

Scratch: I see. Seeking salvation, eh? (jokingly) Do they even do that here any more?

Durwood: (laughs) Yeah, I, uh, don’t know. You see, it’s been awhile and um…

Scratch: Say no more. I understand perfectly. You know, they say it’s better to give than receive.

Durwood: Pardon?

Scratch: Well, you’re here for the “go forth and sin no more” part, right?

Durwood: (sheepishly) Look, um, this is a bit awkward …

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Doomsday: Wop Bop Baloo Bop A Wop Bam BOOM!

This is the end
Beautiful friend
This is the end
My only friend, the end
It hurts to set you free
But you’ll never follow me

– The Doors

Hark thee heathens! I’ve been told that this will be my final post, especially since I probably won’t be able to post again until after May 21st, the advent of ‘End Times’. Oh, you haven’t heard? May 21st is Judgement Day. The doomsayers want you to trust that this time they have done the math. OK, but don’t panic because it won’t really be the end of the world, at least not yet; that won’t come for some five months. Yes, the end of the world, and technically speaking the entire universe, will come to an end on October 21st. Mark that day on your caledar for the foremost forecast is for fire, lots of fire… the ‘hell on Earth’ kind.

Now in all honesty, I really don’t want to make light of some folk’s fervent beliefs, but I do have to admit that in terms of apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic prophecies a lot of us have been there and done that already. Many a false prophecy has come and gone, and many a bible thumper cum humper has reset his abascus and cancelled his Ebay listings.

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