November 10th, 2010

make things

Indifference and the Universe

In the morning I leave for Philadelphia and my readings there, and I don't want to go to bed. I have been a good kitten today and written two whole thousand words in my new digs--a local boutique museum owner is not staying for the winter, and so I'm taking over the tiny little museum space as as office for the cold months. It looks out on the sea and has a coffee maker and no wifi. I am very happy, walking to work in the morning like a grown-up. If I had a frosted, etched glass door with my name on it long-legged dames could walk into my life. As it is I have a Museum Closed Until May sign. But having that separate space to work looks to be making all the difference.

And all afternoon I pretty much listened to Symphony of Science on a loop--it's so beautiful I want to cry, and the videos are so gently sweet and gorgeous--I feel odd about thinking Carl Sagan was kind of hot. But looking at those scientists is bittersweet--some of them are gone now, and especially Sagan who was such a unique man (Contact is still one of my favorite books and one of the first SF ones I ever read when I was a kid) and who left so many people behind whose lives had been picked up and moved around just by him being there. And the way these people talk about the universe--I don't even find poetry like that in actual volumes of poetry any more.

Anyway, it fills me with longing. And that sincerity again, laying me flat out--because I went to buy Professor Elemental's album tonight as I adore the Cup of Brown Joy tea song and was sort of shocked to find the album called The Indifference Engine--clever, yes, but, but, I don't want to be indifferent! I don't want my art to be indifferent! Not what I make and not what I consume. I want to mean everything passionately and sometimes be too loud about it or too sentimental and yeah, sometimes I care so much about shit that it comes out angry and weird or super heart-on-sleeve like OH RIGHT NOW and I know I can be all aggro with my opinions but at least I'm not indifferent! I want to be...different! To everything! Like, the WHOLE POINT of ever being a writer was that I had all this excess FEELING and THINKING about things, and I GOT EXCITED. Indifference is frightening and cold and a little ugly, and the affected uncaring of the cool disturbs me. The SoS songs are kind of dorky but they are not indifferent, not to anything--not what the men are saying in them and not the musicians who put them together. I don't want to be cool and hang out with cool people who are cool about cool things. I want to be hot, burning, all the time, and full up of things, of books and music and beauty and trains headed south through the autumn rain. I don't want indifference! Never, never. Anything in this world but that. And though I still love the tea song I love Carl Sagan more. If you're tired of Carl, then you're tired of life.