Entering The Spouter-Inn

Ishmael enters the Spouter-Inn and encounters a curious, hard to discern large oil-painting, all the while speaking in the second person past: “But what most puzzled and confounded you was a long, limber, portentous, black mass of something hovering in the centre of the picture over three blue, dim, perpendicular lines floating in a nameless yeast.”

Such brilliance describing a mysterious “besmoked” image, somehow connecting storm and night and ship at sea. “Yet was there a sort of indefinite, half-attained, unimaginable sublimity about it that fairly froze you to it, till you involuntarily took an oath with yourself to find out what that marvellous painting meant.” And eventually landing upon the idea that it was somehow a whale about to impale itself upon broken masts.

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The Carpet-Bag

Who would have thought that Melville was such a sweet heart and so sensitive. I realize I’ve only read the first two chapters of Moby Dick, but certainly his early intention is to be gentle and loving towards his reader and to approach his story with grace and humility.

I am 713 pages from the Epilogue, but so far I am entranced, although I must admit that I’m as well a bit flummoxed by all the biblical references. Quite early on I decided to keep my mobile phone nearby which contains the “Dictionary.com” app because there are a good many words unbeknownst to most of us here in 2020.

grapnel, hbo, gregale, Euroclydon, cope-stone. I did not know who Lazarus and Dives were either.

Long and Dense into the Future

All this confrontation with mortality and a world spinning out of control with anger, confrontation, irony, and the true demon of humanity all around us. You get to a certain age and start taking stock. It’s all so weird especially when you live in the future like some of us do.

There are so many things I need to do before I die. Most important is the need to organize all my work and make sure that I print out all the goosey stuff in my computer — much of which was ignited by inspiration but has somewhat disappeared with other ignitions and inspirings piled away on top. I think of the present as the only thing important and the future as music that I am already listening and food that I have been eating, but the past is just piles of stuff and people pretending they know what happened; piles of words and sound and sparkling images. Futility and bass solos.

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