Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Tears for Rachel; Paying for Knowledge

Today marks two weeks since I was started on the "magic bullet," Abilify. Since I flipped into euthymia Thursday, September 27, I have daily been grateful for a huge negative: NOT TO BE DEPRESSED. Those who have suffered clinical depression know whereof I speak. It brings up the old question, is the avoidance of pain superior to the enjoyment of pleasure? As a manic-depressive I say, yes indeed!

Today is the second day I've experienced a little morning anxiety and suffered some of the recurring thoughts about my future and my past, not to suggest they are of such a level as to be depressive obsessions. Still, it scares me; it's as if the ground beneath me has become a net rather than solid earth, that I see the open squares to the abyss and must tread carefully.

Sometimes I need to cry but am afraid to; this morning apparently not, as the tears have begun and I think, "poor Rachel!" My darling baby. My sweet freckled redheaded sunshine. That's what I called her as a small child, my "Sunshine." Because she could distract me from my melancholy in an instant; she was filled with so much wonder for life, her smile could illuminate my heart, he constant activity distract me; she could rescue me from the vision of the net beneath my feet. She was a tonic; she was my sunshine.

Oh, it's true as a teenager and adult she was often a huge pain in the ass, but I think what parents most remember is the unadulterated nature of a child, their essential goodness from birth--before it is spoiled by this world, by competition and the special cruelty of other children. (Children are often emotionallly brutal but at least they tend to be more honest than adults.)

So I grieve today; perhaps this was the source of my anxiety, that I still need to cry. Yes, I fear weeping may lead me back to depression, but I pray not. I'm seeing my shrink tomorrow so I can run these concerns by him.

Yesterday Kathleen scared me by asking, "You're not going to relapse, are you?" I said no, of course. But that she would pick up on a diminution of my cheerfulness is also anxiety-provoking. It wasn't like I was crying or bemoaning my state or anything.

I'm sure if warning signs continue, my doctor will bump up the Abilify. I am on the lowest dose, which, incidentally, is the most expensive--5 mg. How those drug companies know how to stick it to you! (To be fair, likely fewer are on such a small dose, why it costs more, supply and demand, etc.) Still a months supply of 5 mg.Abilify, even from Canada, is $418.

Ah Rachel. Your absence makes me weep. I know you exist, but I miss you in this world. And I wonder what effect this will have on Jacob, losing his mother at 5. But we can't take on the sadness of the world like a saddle for a pack horse. We can only adjudicate our own sorrows slowly. I don't know where people get the energy to grieve for Darfur or Burma; I have enough on my plate. Then many idealists have thrown themselves into good works because of trouble inside and at home. As has been well said, and it sounds like it should have been Shaw, "I love humanity in general but can't stand it in particular."

Today I shall return to my assault upon my revision of my tome on Four Quartets. Sometimes, in reading past prose, I get the distinct feeling I must have been smarter in the past. But I am wiser now and better able to corral my leaping thoughts into a readable order. In some further research on the Quartets, for the first time on the web I paid $14 for two-week access to "F. H. Bradley's Doctrine of Experience in T. S. Eiot's The Waste Land and Four Quartets" by Jewel Spears Brooker. Unfortunately it concentrated mainly on TWL when I bought it for 4Q, about which it had little to say, at least not much more than I knew.

Presumably there is a research library somewhere where the issue of this philology journal is available for free to an academic. But it's so much easier to just buy it; think of the transportation alone! The free access of scholarly information is not free on the Internet, a shame for any university, though they have us by the short hairs when it comes to convenience.

I have stopped crying. God bless you, Rachel, God bless you Jacob.


Craig Erick

p.s. I have some two poems and a story out in in a new journal, sister to Shit Creek Review, called Chimeara . It's good to see some friends and acquaintances in there such as Janet Kenny, Rob Mackenzie, former nemesis Leo Yankevich, Kate Benedict, Jeffrey Calhoun, Salli Shepard and Rick Mullin.


  1. The Chimaera was my sixth submission this year. My fourth rejection notice.

    Congrats on your appearance, CE. And your friends and acquaintances. I wish you many new readers.

    I took a look at the inaugural issue. What with the list of writers, editors and the list of links I saw, I understand why I was rejected. Such a tiny club.

    I hope they'll expand their definitions and their ideas on presentation as they mature, but I don't hold out much hope. Looks like same-o, same-o to me. Well, at least it's free, huh?


  2. Hope you try again, Blue. This was the first issue. We're trying to attract more poets and prose. I think it will always have a formal presentation...if you want something different each issue in presentation, content, I'd go for the SCR.


  3. Does that mean, Beau, you've gone 2/6? Because that's good.

    Tiny club?

    There is no club I know. I'm pissing in the dark for one.

    As an editor I insisted on neither bios nor previous pubs, just the work.

    I don't know if I mentioned that I recently corresponded with a well-known poet, asking her if my low status was due to a lack of talent, voice, connections, what?

    She said, "None of the above. Just lick more stamps."

    Half of those names I got from comments during my recent postings at what you call Gasblow. I don't know them well. Rob you know. Janet I know from Yankevich's old board. Yankevich I know because I challenged him to a boxing match for being such an asshole. He may be a dick but he has talent.

    Your Cybercafe (Cafe Cruz) rules! More people should know about it.


  4. CE,

    I know OF a great many of the individuals appearing in this inaugural issue. I mean, I've seen their work in so many online journals.

    Stamps never did me much good. Is why I stopped using them.

    My cafe only has one rule. No one appears who can't get up off the page. And that rule is why not many forum dwellers know about the cafe. Very few of the REAL poets think what I do has anything to do with poetry. Different definitions, different approaches, different audiences.



    My ideas on presentation would have face2.jpg and Muse, Her Head Full of Poems, from your 'Imagine Too' blogspot, become avatars delivering poems in A/V flash vid format.

    The Chimaera & SCR are trying to emulate print zines. To me, that's not "something different" but 'same-o, same-o'. Coupled with the same-o writers .. well, that's why I don't hold much hope of an expansion of definitions and ideas.

    Don't get me wrong, I'm not trying to belittle anyone involved with the venture and I hope it acquires a LARGE following. I hope it becomes an honored publication and the be all, end all dream of every writer to appear there. Well, not every writer, just the GOOD ones.


  5. I can get off the page. Used to be on the reading circuit in LA. Talk about cronyism and nepotism! Got sick of that scene. Print more democratic and durable. Still I'd love to appear in your Cruz Cafe'.

  6. CE,

    You got recordings? Got your own avatar or an idea of what your avatar should look like? If you know how to perform, I'm looking for your A-list stuff.

    "Talk about cronyism .."

    On the left side of the following page, http://www.cruziocafe.com/July07_Flyer.html there's a blurb on what I'm looking for .. if you want to appear, step up.

    I'll email you an address to send recordings. You know, there's a bunch of LA performers appearing in the Cafe. Tony Barnstone, Lee Rossi, Helene Cardona and a couple others.


    How durable is print? A hundred years on today's idea of paper? How durable are CD/DVDs? 500 years? And the ether, how many years will things last in the net's ether? Some say forever. Durable is a myth. The abyss will have us all. -b

  7. "My ideas on presentation would have face2.jpg and Muse, Her Head Full of Poems, from your 'Imagine Too' blogspot, become avatars delivering poems in A/V flash vid format".

    You can be assured that I would seriously love that, Blue. : )



  8. Pat,

    If you sent me an email, to beaublue@cruziocafe.com granting the permission for their use, I'll see about matching them up to some of the recordings that have been waiting for me to do avatars for. I have pieces from Kim Addonizio, Marcia Adams, Renay, and Susan Browne that have been waiting.

    CE, excuse me for hijacking your comments section.


  9. BB, Tiny Club? The best work submitted was selected.<----Full stop.

  10. As a general proposition, I don't think heaping shit (:)) on other people's publications is the best way to go either.



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