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Monday, August 19, 2013

Monday, April 13, 1981 - the wrong chair

I have been inspired by another writer, a woman, from another time. She writes of her life and surroundings during the Civil War. It seems to be writing in my own style. Or is it that I imagine this to be so? Stuck. The last two weeks - stuck! Lots of gossip and events to write about. Stuck with the fright of life. The emotional situation with myself and Simone and caused me to be parylized. At least in the writing. I have been keeping the first word of what to write, when it, the urge, strikes again. Panic. A feeling of panic. About everything. Writing being the latest to cause panic. It seems to be another thing I have started up, blazed away at, then died without a whimper. The thing about it is that it seemed to help me make some progress. I feel so guilty about all the things that could have been written about this last two weeks. It seems I try to mimic Mrs Chestnut's style. But I am not her. Maybe its best to go back to what I did before. But there is a new feeling I have about writing. The gossip and small stuff does not interest me so much anymore. There is something new in the air. I can't quite make it out yet. Its like when trying to learn something. At one point it seems you have the thing mastered. But little things keep going wrong when you try it. It gets so bad you want to quit. It seems nothing good will ever come of trying again. But finally you master it and go to the end for the first time.

I have been sitting on the wrong chair. The other was too low and hard. This makes it lots easier and faster. But now what to say about anything. Poor Mary Chestnut and not having IBM Selectric to do her writing with. But even with just writing a little bit by hand, for over 20 years, each day, her book comes out to over 800 pages. It has made me quite excited to read about her writing. I have called the Cambridge Public Library and asked them to put me on a reserve list for this book of hers, and an autobiography. My fantasies about someone reading this a hundred years from now start to come up. Shall I talk to whoever you are? What do you think of something addressed to you, but written 100 years ago? The writer is long since gone. But I know that with Mary Chestnut's writing, what few snatches I've seen, it gives me the feeling of being there, of being inside her head. The things she writes of are so human and common. Can you say the same for this? What is your name? Are you male or female? What an interesting idea it is for me to try and conjur you up, 100 years before you exist. Quite a feat, don't you think? And is the world you live in much like mine? I mean the human world, without all the names and faces that identify it in time, the emotional world, where people are just the same as today. But maybe they have learned more and are different. Much of the world does not have Mary's few of slaves. What slaves have you managed to free in the world, and in yourself? Enough talking to you. Time to get back to myself. But it is hard to resist. More defense. Its like not writing has been for me the last two weeks. Now I write about what? Its still me. That came out of me. It was there. Why not let it come out. It frustrates me. On the other hand this page ends. I have been trying this silly thing with paragraphs. Do I ever say more than one sentence about anything? It was just a matter of hitting the tab. And there it was. A new paragraph. I'll try it again.

Now I must start off on something completely new. Not completely new. But about another idea. An idea that builds on previous paragraphs, or, if the last paragraph, a summary of all the previous paragraphs.

Do I have a new idea yet? Maybe it should be written like conversation. I will just use this as a way of talking to myself. Surely there is more than one of me in here. Mary says she writes, in response to someone's asking, "Why do you write in your diary at all, if, as you say, you have to contradict every day what you wrote yesterday?", "Because I tell the tale as it is told to me. I write current rumor. I do not vouch for anything." This is something I wish I'd said. She goes on to say, "I write daily for my own distractions. These memoirs pour servir may some future day afford dates, facts, and prove useful to more important people than I amÖIt is hard, in such a hurry as things are in, to separate wheat from chaff." And so it is for me. And I am envious of her way with words again.

Things have turned around with the art show. Simone is now very enthusiastic about it. Dana has even said he will participate. At first Simone was hesitant about the idea. She thought I would try to connect art and sexuality. Perish the thought! What a silly idea, that there is any connection between art and sexuality. Where does she dream up such ideas? Tsk, tsk. Then her complaint was that I would try to control how everything was to be. She has come up with some ideas of her own and some from other people. She was anxious to get the work of her friends in the show. It seemed as though she wanted to use it as a means of gaining favor with these friends. I have started with some publicity today. Called several papers. Simone got some people in the psychology/psychiatry world interested, having spoken to them about the idea at a recent conference where she presented. I have had the idea to contact FH about the idea, but then it always comes with some anxiety about how they will gobble up the idea and I will disappear. Anyway, we are working on it and others are interested. Perhaps we will even be able to take it to NYC. My imagination races ahead of me again, and I've had the idea to visit Linda, and try to arrange something. Neither happened this last weekend, although that was the plan. So much for my plans. This has been a problem recently. A feeling of spinning my wheels. Lots of things going on and lots of motion. But no progress. I continue to feel stuck. Shit, forgot the new paragraph.

Last night was a big thing here. Simone and Ken slept together, here, in her bed. Dana in his bed, and me in mine. There was a bit of tension at first. We were doing some drawing. Me, Simone, Dana, Tom Howard, Edwin, when he arrived. He did not participate at first, but later joined in. Stu had promised to kill and disown him if he sleeps overnight with Simone. He wants Ken and Simone to come to his house, talk about the whole thing, and for Simone to spend the night with him. Ken does not like this idea. Simone stalls for sometime before going to bed. She finally comes to kiss me goodnight and says she will be going to sleep right away. And that she wouldn't be doing this if it weren't for me. She wanted to make an agreement about not having anyone sleep over with either of us, but I would agree to it, and this is the result. I tell her that its not really my fault, the devil made you do it, I says. She had thought I was going to be gone for 5 or 6 days. Monday night, and the rest of the week, were to be spent with Michael. She only told me about Monday, but confessed about staying with him the whole week only today. But he has called to cancel their date for tonight. I want to fuck him, she says. What he mouth she has acquired since knowing me! I want the big O, she says. That's an orgasm, which she has not been able to have with me. She had fantasies of a fantastic sexual affair with Ken, like what she had with Dave Ring. But that is not destined to be right away. The fact of them being here caused much of the excitement of a new relationship to be squashed. But it didn't go so bad. For me there was a combination of jealousy and horniness. I could hear them in the next room. At one point she got up and was rumaging around for something. Birth control devices, I says to myself. And she was going right to sleep. She could find her diaphram. It was right there in her suitcase. She says I hid it. Not so. She probably did not want to find it. But she could have used condoms. She always had those around. She could have gotten one from me. She tells me she wanted to be with me, and told Ken so. But they had a good time talking. About me he said how his opinion was one way from what Stu told him, but now its quite different. He thought me to be a very big and crude person, not too smart, and other not so nice things. Simone has the idea that he is a very together person. It will go away in time, and if he continues to come around here. She had a similar opinion of me at the beginning of our relationship. Soon she got a more accurate picture.

Simone and Stu are having the same problem. An acute attack of jealousy. For Simone the problem seems to be Linda. For Stu the problem seems to be Ken, me, and Dana. Its not any of us really. Simone has been putting the screws to me so I won't do anything to make her feel insecure. She was continually telling me not to go to NYC to visit Linda. She has to constantly search for other explanations about why I do these things, and in the same breath out comes her urges about other men, like Ken and Michael. In her most lucid moments she will just admit wanting to fuck, wanting their attention, wanting to talk about things with them. This contradictory behavior will sometime cause her difficulties. For me, hypocritical behavior always gets me to thinking and rationalizing about the thing, and this always parylizes me a bit. I think to myself, soon a confession will be in order. But it often never comes. The time never seems just right, or another convenient distraction pops up. In Simone's case, she always changes the subject. Her mother is just like this. That is another story again. The dog at her parents house is not kept in the basement all the time. They have just completely re-carpeted the whole upstairs. The dog pisses on everything and chews everything. It seems they should get rid of the dog and the cats. They are not taken care of.

I am not satisfied with this. It seems to degenerate to the old style and small minded gossip of two weeks ago. Its not really about me. Always I am distracted by someone else's influence on me and what is the meaning of this little thing and how has that little thing caused me some problem here or there. How to get around these things? It's a distraction from doing something about feeling stuck. It leads me to believe that is the cause of my being stuck. Not so.

Simone and Dana have just returned from teaching their Tufts dream course. I am a little bit anxious about them coming in and reading my notes. It seems more so than in the past. I noticed something about those two yesterday. Simone wanted to do some work in the kitchen where it was quiet and she could eat something. Dana comes in and starts to do something, plus make noise. This disturbs Simone who speaks to him in a harsh voice. It makes me uncomfortable as he does not stop immediately and its obvious she holds back about criticizing him a second time. But what should I do? It makes me feel tense. Its obvious that I could say something. Not about the noise, but about their communication with each other. Dana is insensitive and Simone does not really reply to this. I see it, feel it, notice it, but do nothing. The tension in me says to do something. But I don't. I have an opinion. But it is badly formed. The words do not come out quick and sharp. I am too slow and the best moment passes. Then I say it is too late. The tension has parylized me.

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