Wednesday, March 27, 2013



It easily slides out of the pocket into my hands and I slip away.
Maybe the pocket of that person hanging onto a subway strap, eyes meeting his own in his reflection in the train window, tunnel lights flashing by, stroboscopic. Or the three others crowded together near the pole by the door. All I know is the pocket I reached for, as if to move people aside so I could pass through, the pocket my prey.
So what do I have as the bunched few shove to exit through the train door as it stops, a rush of air from the subway station, its sounds now more apparent in my thoughts, invading my curiosity for what I garnered. Stole. New passengers take their place. Which one of those who left did I pickpocket? Does it matter? I’ll imagine it the man looking at his reflection.
The train lurches and I spin and face an elderly woman older than me, face lined, standing because no one would offer her a seat, then another lurch, a bump, and I almost knock her down. I grab the bar with one hand, her arm with the other, and she is stabilized but glaring. I shrug as if to say, what do you expect, it’s the subway, this is the city. Don’t let go, she seems to ask with her eyes. I nod my head toward an empty seat. Another man taps her back. Take the seat, he says. He escorts her. I watch and smile feebly. The man ignores me. The woman leaves the train at the next station and smiles at me. The man leaves, too.
Stations go by and the train is almost empty. I exit. I’m parked along the river. I need a drink and pass a neighborhood bar. Go in? No. Cross the river to head back north. Why did I park here? A whim. I went to the art museum, got bored, left, walked through midtown, thought about a movie, no not that either - my treasure in my pocket as I think about this. It feels like something folded, hard, cardboard. I can’t look. It will ruin the surprise. There will be no disappointment. I imagine I’m stealing a dream. I’ll make of it what I want.

(To be continued …)
© 2013 Wes Rehberg

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

"VISION" - WENDELL BERRY -- for a holy week

A good time for "Vision" -- even for this holy week, from Wendell Berry:

A Vision

If we will have the wisdom to survive,
to stand like slow-growing trees
on a ruined place, renewing, enriching it,
if we will make our seasons welcome here,
asking not too much of earth or heaven,
then a long time after we are dead
the lives our lives prepare will live
here, their houses strongly placed
upon the valley sides, fields and gardens
rich in the windows.  The river will run
clear, as we will never know it,
and over it, birdsong like a canopy.
On the levels of the hills will be
green meadows, stock bells in noon shade.
On the steeps where greed and ignorance cut down
the old forest, and old forest will stand,
its rich leaf-fall drifting on its roots.
The veins of forgotten springs will have opened.
Families will be singing in the fields.
In their voices they will hear a music
risen out of the ground.  They will take
nothing from the ground they will not return,
whatever the grief at parting.  Memory,
native to this valley, will spread over it
like a grove, and memory will grow
into legend, legend into song, song, into sacrament.
The abundance of this place,
the songs of its people and its birds,
will be health and wisdom and indwelling,
light.  This is no paradisal dream.
Its hardship is its possibility.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013


Cartography (a writer's reflection):
* A map is not the reality, it is a bounded representation, a simulation accepted as a reality.
- a mind map.
(Visit "simulacrum"}
* In 9/11 the mind map was moved to the territory of Iraq, away from the "territories" of its "truth," also maps in the minds of the perpetrators, thus the Iraq mind map preceded the war map and masked the maps underneath.
* When I read an assemblage of signs, say a report, the map it creates is a simulation that my mind map alters even further.
* We, no different from other animals, map our “territory.”

* Ergo ...

Friday, March 01, 2013


How I formulated the project name “Wild Clearing”:
I opened to a page in my book “Political Grace: The Gift of Resistance” and found I wrote this:
“I am a resister of the oppressive and dominating political and economic order of the trilateral north, thus I call myself a resister and proclaim that. As a resister, I am insinuated to be a traitor to the dominating political and economic order, thus I am both a traitor and resister and accept that. As both traitor and resister, I am one who dwells in an uncertain space within the geographical limits of one of the prime movers of that order, the country that appropriates to itself the label that also denotes the hemisphere, ‘America,’ the United States … It is not a space I dwell in alone, others share it … The borders of this space are constituted by our capacity to articulate our resistance, and by the counter-resistance our resistance encounters.”
I then go on to call this space a “wild clearing.” the original genesis of the project name “Wild Clearing.”
Brave words in my Ph.D. dissertation of the same title and text as the book. How to keep up the energy to continue this …

The book's web page"