Wednesday, May 01, 2013

Robert Sund, Charlie Berg, Tom Robbins

Passages from the Fishtown Blues book -- soon to be published

Charlie Berg -- if you remember him -- lived in South LaConner and may have said something like this in 1982.

“Yes,” Charlie said. “We live under a volcano and we’re all going to die. That’s why I keep these lawn chairs in the front yard. This is how I figure it – when she blows, the mud and ice come racing down the valley, first Concrete, then Lyman, Hamilton, Sedro-Woolley, one town after another all swallowed up, cows flung about like matchsticks, sirens blasting, people racing around, but not me – when I see that mud flow coming at LaConner I just sets me down in this lawn chair and watch the show. The End. We go out with a bang. It will be like the last surfer riding the biggest wave.”

Robert Sund's poem -- Himself, making a bold statement of his art

“I am the heir of Walt Whitman and a first cousin to Gandalf.
I row the marsh and the sweet yellow iris calls my name.
I sing the tide and work the wind up the river,
To Disappearing Lake, around Bald Island,
Returning on the ebb tide and through Hole-in-the-Wall.
Aflame with thirst, I drive my oared skiff to the LaConner Tavern,
To shoot pool and quaff pitchers of Olympic beer.”

Tom Robbins makes a brief appearance in the Fishtown Blues.

He says, to his African girlfriend, while sitting on the bench on the landing of the Benton Street stairs:

“Hold on a minute,” Tom said. “Let me tell you something. I want to live forever. I never want to die. Even if I died in my sleep with no pain or memory, I wouldn’t like it. I would like to get out of my body if it rots, but where could I go? That’s why I came to Zimbabwe, to find you, because you don’t fear death. I don’t fear death either, but the idea of it really pisses me off."

Then I wrote this poem

Moses, Calling for Old Moses, He Ain't What He Used to Be

She was climbing trees,
Eating black-eyed peas,
Dusting the credenza on her knees.

She was watering the roses,
Talking trash with her poses
Of triumph over Moses.

She said, "Moses, who you kiddin?
Your madness isn't hidden,
You lost us in the desert,
And you're sins are not forgiven."


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