I received this message (heard above and seen below) from an old friend after a few years of no correspondence. The audio can be streamed above or downloaded by clicking here.
I’ve been thinking about you so much lately- probably because it’s dead pigeon season. Ever noticed that about spring? I’m not sure if there are pigeons in China, but they are everywhere in New York City, and come April they just seem to die rather graphically all over the sidewalks, with the falling of the pink blossoms.
I’ve been thinking about all this because of our first and only date, that time you said you wanted to take me to the summit of Mt. Harlow and show me a rare breed of moss that can only grow from the leftover carcasses of truffles. We’d stopped for a wine break halfway into our ascent when we noticed of all things a small, unidentifiable bird that looked somewhat like a pigeon with a broken wing. Anyway, halfway through my frantically trying to get cell phone service to look up animal control and make a splint, you picked up the helpless creature and snapped his neck, ending his small yet important life.
I don’t really remember the rest of the date except that we didn’t talk very much and you kissed my chin which I thought was very odd, and I couldn’t tell if it was romantic or something my drunk Uncle Lee from Georgia would do at a family reunion.
You are a man of violent mercy, Roger. If anything, that is how I will remember you. I wrote you a little story, a bedtime story if you will- as I recall you once told me I had hair like a split artery and eyes like the moon. So here it is- the Autobiography of the Moon.
The Autobiography of the Moon
The phone rang and I was born. I’ve never seen my parents because I’ve got no eyes, but their voices have been with me since I was a young and unremarkable stone. Nobody ever handed me any light. Brighter, they’d say. Less gloom, more doom.
For my first birthday my father gave me the sea. Why does it feel so good to pull all this water around the world? The beached whales are not my fault and I do my dirty work in the shadows. All shadows are my second cousins.
My first and only love was an angel named science. Her brain stuck a bayonet in my heart and wound me around the earth she hovers above, always.
People look up to me but I don’t look down at them. Why do you continue to give me things, put things on flowered altars, hang things on your doors, necks in your tree branches, bleed and love and kill in accordance to my shape? I can’t see you.
Sometimes I wish all the howling and praying and weeping and laughing would stop, just stop, just stop and it could be quiet. It’s quite loud up here. Your voices are harpoons and caresses.
In my world, I am the religion, and the religion is in love with it’s characters. Who are the characters in my bible? That would be you. And you. And you. And you. And all those fishes in my childhood toy that is your ocean.
Don’t forget about the fishes. Ever. Don’t feel sorry for them either- something in them knows they were born for dinner.
We’re all just looking for a creator. Give me a creator.