Wednesday, June 26, 2013


MIMICKING A DAY’S MEMORY: So, today we delighted in the last couple of breakfast hours with the Grafton, Massachusetts clan, drove back to our cabin wishing we could have stayed longer. I took a ride into Binghamton (NY) to pick up the last section of our kitchen sink’s base cabinets and completed piecing it together, mended the leaks, sealed the countertop, we ate, weary from all that has passed thus far, I washed the dishes in the now installed sink, big single bowl, unfinished oak base front with particle board sides, Lowe’s specials, and we were glad this new convenience finally came into place in our modest cabin and of this day of our days here and the sweet memories of this latest visit.
I write tired yet astonished at the experience we shared these almost two weeks - no time to link up with friends this visit, the work and family kept us traveling and laboring and joining with the extended clans. I miss that important connection.
On our return from Grafton, I read aloud to Eileen from Annie Dillard’s “Teaching a Stone to Talk,” the opening chapter, one I consider a friend to visit with now and then also, “Total Eclipse,” of the sun that is, in Washington state’s Yakima valley, Dillard’s cadences, musings, bold phrasings, stark observations, her lexicons and grammars now part of my physical sensibility. Like typing how news writers write to learn the style, as I did when I first tried to convince a newspaper to hire me and succeeded - learning the phrasings with my fingers.
A mimic seeking a little bit of originality. Thoughts that end without a formal ending. Selah.

Sunday, June 23, 2013


EACH LITTLE STEP in our marriage-long Tuscarora Mountain saga on this patch of upstate New York land has been treated like a milestone, beginning with a ride here almost 24 years ago on a motorcycle to camp out a few often rainy days in a small tent.
Our current visit adds a few more little milestones - precious to us as this land is, a land we respect not because we have “title” to it, but because it is part of earth’s formation, and humankind’s history, whose inhabitants, including the Tuscarora Indians, etched it in their own ways.
We know it was logged. We know rural folks cut slabs of bluestone shale from it to eke out a living. The scars and mining formations are evident, even if covered with new growth. There are mounds too that will not be disturbed; let our imaginations play with the mystery they represent.
Even today, when I started to piece together a kitchen sink and countertop from scratch, marked a milestone, the first real kitchen sink for us here in all these years. And Eileen’s painting a new shade of color on our old 24’ x 12’ cabin fashioned from an Amish shed we bought 11 years ago after dwelling on our visits in old basically immobile campers in middle stages of dilapidation, that eventually had to be towed away as junk.
And then the 16’ x 16’ cabin extension with a sleeping loft that we had a contractor build two years ago that provided us with bathroom and kitchen space and - behold - indoor plumbing, with an indoor shower, and the commode and bathroom sink I installed last year, more little milestones.
History with family and friends too and their milestones, some passing from life itself, like we will eventually.
All of this is temporal, which makes it even more precious, as we fashion our story and this part of our lives here, and as it sustains ours and our four rescued pets’ during our time here, as well as our continuing dreams as a creative, mindful, socially and eco-conscious couple.

Milestones, to us, of deepest value.

23 June 2013

Thursday, June 13, 2013


From The Faircloth Review and The Rusty Nail

Amazed at this:
I’ve published two poems, and four short stories have been accepted for publication since I started writing fiction and poetry in March last year.
The short stories:
“Scooter” in eFiction Magazine’s issue July 2012
“Halloween Eve 1945” in the Faircloth Review in October 2012
“Pickpocket” upcoming in the Sugar Mule Literary Magazine
“Tina’s Story of Death and Survival in Nicaragua,” upcoming in Black Earth Institute’s About Place Journal. (nonfiction)
The two poems - “Alien Bones” and “Tick Tock” -- appeared in July 2012 issue of The Rusty Nail.
There were rejections, too, especially with poetry.
Issues of eFiction Magazine and The Rusty Nail are available at

Tuesday, June 11, 2013


An honor! … My non-fiction short story “Tina's Story of Death and Survival in Nicaragua” has been accepted for publication in the “Earth, Spirit and Society” issue of the About Place Journal published quarterly by the Black Earth Institute.


Versatility + ADD + ENFP + curiosity + rebelliousness = unruly discipline.

So that’s it …
Tested in the context of experience and reality ...

Sunday, June 09, 2013


I as other and the novelty of deriving concepts

Recouped Gilles Deleuze’s slim but packed “Kant’s Critical Philosophy” from an unruly bookshelf amid basement clutter - and then Eileen found her copy of his and FĂ©lix Guattari’s “Anti-Oedipus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia.” Between Deleuze, Whitehead, metaphysics and writing, I’m lost in Rimbaud’s: “I is another” - (cited by Deleuze in “Kant”) - wondering which Other the Other is.
Other hand, it doesn’t matter.

“Each reading of a philosopher, an artist, a writer should be undertaken, [Gilles] Deleuze tells us, in order to provide an impetus for creating new concepts that do not pre-exist (DR vii).... new concepts are derived from others’ works, or old ones are recreated or ‘awakened’, and put to a new service”
“...from Difference and Repetition (1968 DR) trans. Paul Patton (1994: Colombia University Press, New York)”
-- On Gilles Deleuze, in the International Encyclopedia of Philosophy
In Brain Pickings Weekly, Annie Dillard is quoted in “The Writing Life” as supporting and adhering to a regular routine for writing, as are others …
I don’t have that discipline neither for reading nor writing -- I’m all over the place, writing bits here, reading snatches there … her book a favorite ...

Friday, June 07, 2013


Thinking about surveying the difference between Whitehead’s and Deleuze’s metaphysics, but I should probably re-read “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” first …
… and replay “Jefferson Airplane’s “White Rabbit” ...

So ...

"Cheshire Puss,' ... 'Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?'
'That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,' said the Cat. 'I don't much care where—' said Alice.
'Then it doesn't matter which way you go,' said the Cat.
'—so long as I get SOMEWHERE,' Alice added as an explanation. 'Oh, you're sure to do that,' said the Cat, 'if you only walk long enough.' Alice felt that this could not be denied, so she tried another question. 'What sort of people live about here?'
'In THAT direction,' the Cat said, waving its right paw round, 'lives a Hatter: and in THAT direction,' waving the other paw, 'lives a March Hare. Visit either you like: they're both mad.'
'But I don't want to go among mad people,' Alice remarked.
'Oh, you can't help that,' said the Cat: 'we're all mad here. I'm mad. You're mad.'
'How do you know I'm mad?' said Alice.
'You must be,' said the Cat, 'or you wouldn't have come here.'

And ..
'Take some more tea,' the March Hare said to Alice, very earnestly.
'I've had nothing yet,' Alice replied in an offended tone, 'so I can't take more.'
'You mean you can't take LESS,' said the Hatter: 'it's very easy to take MORE than nothing.'

Thursday, June 06, 2013


More on Metaphysics (the problem of the subject-object relationship):
A key problem to me is the “being-in-the-world” understanding (Heidegger’s “Dasein”) as a human, and the relationship with that which may be both of the world and not of it (e.g., God).
In this case, it seems to me to not be the subject-object relationship that Heidegger had a problem with (as I do, too), but a subject-subject one. That is, instead of “I have a relationship with God” (subject-object either way) one says “God and I and the cosmos and whatever is beyond are mutual.”
But even here linguistics constrains because “mutual” as a universal is the predicate of “God and I and the cosmos and whatever is beyond..”
Another way to look at this is what an anthropologist Eileen and I met with in Mexico City described as the linguistic difference displayed by the Cholojobal Mayan indians in Chiapas, Mexico, from the traditional language arrangement we’re accustomed with. To him (he and his wife lived with them for decades) this tribal group did NOT use the subject-cupola-object relationship (e.g. the fence is gray, or, he loves she) but instead uses a subject-subject linguistic in which the verb is dominant (love/he/she/shared). This is hard for us to wrap our minds around. And even now I have to use the subject/object linguistic to describe it.
Still, this latter way of speaking (linguistics) and knowing (epistemology) and being (ontology) is one thing I’m exploring in metaphysics, including how it impacts identity.


Wednesday, June 05, 2013


From --Stephen Mumford -- “Metaphysics: A very short introduction”
-substances/substratum/ wholes vs aggregates sums/ reductionist (parts explain wholes)/ emergentism (more than sum of parts) holism/
-properties/qualities/re circle-wholly present, runs through the many/Plato’s forms (problem of Form and its relationship to the derivative form-resemblance[also a Form-infinite regress])/instantiating of/Aristotle’s immanent realism/
-particulars/ one and the same e.g./substratum view/bundle view (re properties)/united by degree of continuity/relational/ argument between everything is either properties (bundle e.g) or a particular-particulars/ complex particular (contra atomism)/ is wholly present (Aristotle) endurantism/ perdurantism-in itself no need of relation, succession of static properties/
-changes/ events-processes/ change or loss of property or within a property/ Aristotle- parts in space; parts in time/ (see endurantism-perdurantism in properties)
-causes/ most not all changes need causes (big-bang no)/ causal connection/ Hume-unobservable, part of a pattern/ other world/ Mill’s method of difference (actual/placebo control compare)/ singularism-regularity Hume/ general-particular mixup/
-relationships/relations (vav properties)/via Plato’s forms/
-possibilities/ all actual is possible (mere possibilities)/ shape interaction with world/ concrete possible worlds (like ours in some way) but abstract/ what one could have been/ recombinations/ fiction/ logically possible/ naturally possible/  
-time/ (events/processes) background of/ flows/ in-itself also could mean stops-starts/ need metaphors for/ two methodologies/ spatial analogy: past, present, future properties/ presentism (how long does it last?) (absolute simultaneity vs relativity of position or viewpoint)/ subjective present/ past via present as part of its reality (properties of events?)/ sequence view - past-present in relation temporally/ big-bang chain of events - Aristotelian resemblance/ Platonist- what time did big-bang begin?/ eternalist: past,present, future all real/ now: what past and future don’t have, a POV/
-personal identity/ person: human and nonhuman (Locke)/ quality of/ has a memory/ beliefs that change (or not)/ Wittgenstein’s rope-stand analogy/ Descarte: body and mind parts; relation between spiritual (mind) and physical (body) substance; body as extension/ space occupied by what? impenatrability (solidity) body, spiritual no extension-penatrable/ dualism/ materialism-idealism/ causal interaction between spiritual-physical/ causality question/ a one-one/ memory faulty or delusional/ bodily continuity/
-nothingness/ is nothing something or not?/ absences part of reality/ univocal-it exists or doesn’t/ negative property calculations/ incompatabilities/ causation by absence (of water, say)/ reified absences re properties-particulars-existences/ nothing just a word - nothing in world makes it true/ Russell, negative facts (metaphysical concept of facts)/ everthing existing is positive fact/ assertion-denial/ “if”/ nothing-absence-lacks no part of existence/
-emergence/ particulars emerge at a higher level of reality/ qualities emerge/ how does mind emerge from bodily parts?/ life an emergent quality/ what possible is emergent?/
-Metaphysics/ concerned about nature of things in general terms/ understand fundamental nature of reality/ science truths general and concrete; metaphysical truths general and abstract/ science (physics) based on observable; metaphysics not necessarily so/ Hume dismissed metaphysics/ Kant metaphysics-description of our structure of thinking about the world/ what the world is like/ how concepts that describe world relate to each other/ scientific powers of observation exaggerated/ metaphysics at theoretical end/ what of counterintuitive or contradictory/ (me) observation limited by senses and cognitive powers/ theories based on reasoning alone insufficient/ how know anything is true/ theoretical virtues- gel with other theories, consistent.