MY GOODNESS

…well, not mine exactly, not anyone’s to be exact, but the notion of was what I’m still rolling about in my head. The notion of goodness is an act or deed, according to Hannah Arendt, that is not premeditated. That is to say that Arendt believes “the moment a good work becomes known and public, it loses its specific character of goodness, of being done for nothing but ‘goodness’ sake” ( 215). I tend to agree with this, as the good deed seems much less like a good deed when the event becomes public, or is acknowledged.

That said, it is her notion of solitude in conjunction with goodness that struck me most, considering our previous conversations about solitude. A quote from Arendt says that (the use of ‘man’ singular is important in the fact that it is singular) “the man who is in love with goodness can never afford to lead a solitary life, and yet his living with others and for others must remain essentially without testimony and lacks first of all the company of himself. He is not solitary, but lonely” (216). Thus, are we to assume loneliness is a derivative of trying to maintain what is perceived to be a good life?

13

…writing prompts.  That was the exercise handed out today.  I think those suffering from melodramatic boredom and those suffering from nothing more than not suffering from melodramatic boredom should try their hand at one or two of these.

I’m pondering over the metaphor in some of the prompts. Some of them might make good poems.
And I didn’t get to read my dialogue out loud today as we ran out of time; I’ve been promised next week.

ANOTHER EXERCISE

…this time dialogue between a sailor, and a tiller (someone who’s stayed, someone who’s gone away). It’s silly to say the least, but at the same time, kinda fun. Any comments are welcome.

Man’s Best Friend

Phone call from a dog to his owner.

Dog: Hello? Can you hear me now?

Owner: Oh, you’re funny. Sure. I could hear you before. I guess I was just blocking everything out.

Dog: So, you have nothing to say in your defence, leaving me here in the kennel?

Owner: My defence? I don’t think I have to defend my actions. Since when did my actions become something I must defend? Honestly. Am I on trial? Is this a trial? You’re the dog. I’m the human. We do things like this, that’s what makes us human. Sheesh. I thought, German Shepard’s were supposed to be smart? I thought you’d have that figured out by now.

Dog: That’s it isn’t it. I’m just the dog. Always a dog. Dog. Dog. Dog. Bark. Bark. Bark. It’s not me that does most of the barking. I seem to recall you’re pretty good at it. That’s all you humans really like to do isn’t it? Bark. Like the yap of some little kid grabbing a hold of my fur. They always do that you know. Grab onto the fur like grabbing a hold of it might keep me from vanishing. Are you afraid of reality? Afraid I might vanish into thin air? I suppose that’s why you name us those banal names, to keep us in our place, to keep us, where “you want us”.

Owner: Oh, for Christ’s sake. Are you doing psychoanalysis there? You’re reading too much into this—you’re just feeling sorry for yourself. (Sigh). I suppose that’s all this is, a cry for attention. I should’ve known when I bought you this was what you’d do, continually seek attention.

Dog: I suppose that’s what you think, being human, that all we do is piss on tires and hope for your attention. There’s more to life than tires, lawns, and the lot— there’s more beyond the stench of lonely nights in the dog kennel. I’m sure you don’t even know how— night after night it’s the same old routine, dog in, dog out. And you wouldn’t give a crap about the dog in the next room, always sniffing around my ass, like I had an ass worth sniffing. I’m not even sure what this dog wants from me, but it’s always sniffing whenever I get within one foot of its snout.

Owner: Hey, buddy, I understand loneliness. Didn’t Gloria love you to bits? I know she did. I know she loved us both. I know this.

Dog: You don’t know shit.

Owner: I know she loved us. She tried to stay with us.

Dog: She didn’t try hard enough.

Owner: She did all she could. You can’t blame Gloria for the cancer that ate her away. You can’t.

Dog: I suppose you’ve got a point. I blame the cancer for taking away Gloria. She was the only one that loved me.

Owner: I love you.

Dog: Not. Look at you. Drowning your sorrows at Hedonism 2. Oo, oo, oo. That’s love alright. Up till dawn with it. Rolling around in sand-shifting pain.

Owner: I need to live.

Dog: Come home. I’ll show you some love. I’ll show you some life.

Owner: Honestly. Why are you so cruel?

Dog: Because I’m a dog. Why are you so human?

Owner: Because I’m a dog. Gloria wouldn’t have stood for your insolence.

Dog: She didn’t in the end, did she?

Owner: You’re too much, do you know that?

Dog: I do know that. You’re not enough, do you know that? Do you know how many times Gloria wished you were different? Do you know how much Gloria wished you were someone else?

Owner: (Silence)

Dog: Do you know how many times she confided in me? Wished you were a better husband? Wished you weren’t fucking the girl in the office, wished you could look her in the eye when you came home for supper, wished you would do more than just take her to chemo, and drop her off, simply saying you couldn’t stand the stench of death.

Did you know she couldn’t stand looking at herself the way she was; the hair loss, the jagged thinness of her body and how much she wanted it to be your body instead of mine curled up beside her? Do you know how many times I brushed my tongue on the softness of her cheek, lightly, evenly to remind her she was alive? How many times did I try to take her mind off that tucked-out mood?

Owner: But…

Dog: (Interrupts) And how many nights did you miss her vomiting in the toilet, her fingers flexed in her hair, that long blonde beauty slipping out between her fingers, and the strands hurled into the garbage in a rage, in a fit of frenzy. How many nights did she cry, night after night of weeping wetting my dense fur? How many of these do you remember, hunh? How much do your remember in the web of your sandy toes spread on the beach? How many?

Owner: (Clears throat). How many? You ask how many? Dog, you see only black and white something that is coloured with the core of so many aches. You see nothing except your own stainless steel bowl, the emptiness of it before you. You see Gloria’s death as something to gain a footing to the edge of my bed.

Dog, you know nothing, and yet, you’ve seen everything. I can’t explain my actions, but I know you’re hurting. I know this.

Dog: You know nothing.

Owner: Dog, I know nothing, and something. I’ll be home shortly; I’m bringing you a present.

Dog: Humph. Snort.

Owner: She’s young.

Dog: Sniff.

Owner: She’s a Collie-cross.

Dog: You know I hate hairy girls.

Owner: (Chuckle). I know, but she’s damn cute. She’s owned by this girl I met. Tanya.

Dog: Well. I suppose the only thing left to say is: bite me.

Owner: Now we’re barking.

Dog: I shake my paw at you, you bastard.

Owner: (Laughs).

Dog: Is she cute?

Owner: Which one?

Dog: Does it matter?

THIS WEEK

…in Tracyland came and went without much excitement. The extra load of reading is exhausting, but I’m feeling like I’m getting somewhere, although where that somewhere may be, I don’t really know.

I went to my 4 classes, got a mark back on my annotated bibliography, tried to finish one epic and move on to another, looked into numerous application procedures for various things, got behind on my reading, and I booked some tickets for some poetry research.

For those unaware, my travelling companion and I’ll experience a new way of life for a few weeks in April of 2007, hopefully delighting our senses with places of some significance. After staying a short amount of time in Vienna, we hope to make our way to Neulengbach, Austria to see the Viennese Forrest, and then perchance to alight our feet upon the rails, and wander through the trees to Cesky Krumlov, medieval home of the 2nd largest castle in Europe, and home to the Egon Schiele Art Centre. I don’t think 2 weeks is long enough to experience everything, but I’m pleased to say, it’s long enough for something.