PREFACE yellow book company: a compilation of pages signaling a journey in non-sequential order (page 8) if it’s more real than white, then why don’t we save it a space on every forehead? not the past, little lady, the space within—no—the sight that gives sight, what blinds us to the gaps that only the mind can see what’s outside is a dream, our eyes are eaves of longing the sameness of philosophers & disparities from a distant future if you’re listening now, you’ll hear it, what conspires against us the roar of our own barren forgetfulness but you, you rage like a river of quiet understanding, the brute magic of innocence is the salt in your veins, the sun that unfolds the body of the sun, listen with your eyes, my child, you are stained with the grace of music, born to skate across this world on the backside of a rainbow (page 41) the look on his face told me he was a genie without a bottle an unchained paradise hard-wired into mad fantasies of flight (page 23) on a 4 a.m. walk with the dreamers a cool drink of lemon and a sun shower melting from the milky tips of a jasmine fantasy not a regression, but a past progression the moon bloomed like a faithful flower and we swung from the shoulders of heaven like a gang of primordial violet-eyed monsters third eye from the center, the essence of tranquility the city rested on a cloud of casual love and we were cloaked in soft skeletons of hope (page 58) in, closer zoom zoom zoom zoom to the left, a man and an invisible woman their insides were made of sin two lips destined to remain a breath apart (page 70) it may be said that our obsessions have increased in numbers recently our natural response to the insanity of government - how did we get here? - bad behavior (page 36) but he was a jazz man and he remained upright on a backbone of wishes these yellow hours between day and night (page 3) you can’t live this life just standin’ around waitin’ for the other shoe to drop now, listen, this world is paralyzed by its own inertia but baby girl, you gotta move to the music, turn the page, play in the realm of fantasy until you can close your eyes and perch yourself on the wings of a not-so-distant future but to live with uncertainty, you gotta move from a center of commitment commitment to life commitment to love commitment to making your soul shine in the right direction (page 157) in the end, one is cognizant of having passed through the kind of art that transfigures a body into its most basic universal forms
Some of you may have noticed that, about a week ago, I published and then subsequently deleted a poem, which I’d intended to turn into a short series, titled “Analog Man.” I wasn’t happy with it. If I’m to be honest, I didn’t like it at all. So, I decided to scrap it and allow myself some time to see if those same sentiments would come together differently. A period of “creative waiting,” as Rollo May calls it. And, indeed, this morning, I figured out what I needed to do.
“Yellow Book Company” is a phrase that came into my mind rather innocuously about two or three weeks ago and that I jotted down in my notebook, along with all the other potentially worthwhile phrases that pop into my mind. But the words, “yellow book company,” started becoming a bit of an obsession–a haunting, if you will–over the past few days. And even though I did not quite understand what they meant, I knew I needed to do something with them.
Needless to say, this poem is experimental and it will go on. I also anticipate that it will become increasingly experimental as it evolves. You may consider this a rather loosely defined “Part I”; although, there will be no such actual delineations throughout.
*In addition to the featured image, titled “Vesuvio and the Stabian Baths, AD 79,” this post was inspired, in part, by the following image also created by my friend and artist, T. Blake titled, “Aphonopelma echinum – USP Florence.”
You can find more of his work, along with a great deal more of my poetry, in my recently released chapbook, Seven Road & Other Poems.