Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Subtle Things

Best Subtle Storm: Gregory Alan Isakov

The periwinkle glow of Third Man Records' Blue Room is enough to make anyone feel like they're stuck in a Violet Beauregardian state of consciousness, but Isakov, a South Africa-born, Philadelphia-raised songwriter turned the place into an intimate living room serenade (even with Jack White's beloved taxidermy hanging overhead). Isakov's songs, wistful and often-string chugged, could blend into the landscape if they were a hair less sincere or a hair more weepy, but the balance here is just right. Crowded around a mic with his dynamite band, Isakov's presence was delicately hypnotic, proving folk music can be electric and impassioned without that virulent Mumford strum. —Marissa R. Moss

Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/lists/americana-music-fest-2014-best-performances-20140922/

Everything, all
the marbles from the dime bag
and the hope you bring
to my current digs
feathers my sight, promises
me wings and a new
perch in the crazy
scheme of subtle driven things
that still surround me.

December 17, 2010 3:58 AM

"the subtle driven things that still surround me..." I am on a journey into old age, where the body fails this way and that just like all complicated relationships can. It becomes ever more clear that my body is a society populated by specialists who reveal themselves in their departure for wherever they go when they leave me behind. I am grateful that for me the process is a weakening and slowing down that does not include very much chronic pain. I know many people suffer greatly. That I do not suffer much is why I see my process as a subtle one. I hope it remains so.

If this poem, which does suit my current situation is actually about my current situation, then it is prediction. In 2010 I had no idea what was coming in the main arc of my life. I am not usually able to tell the future. I think therefore what is happening to me must be universal or close to it.

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The chicken crossed the road. That's poultry in motion.

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