Feeling Pretty Psyched

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So here it is, the Mayan Calendar has hit the end of the 13th Baktun, the Blue Kachina will be born to dance in the pueblos of the Hopi, our plane of existence will merge with the Supercontext and we will all know ourselves as what we are, pure spirit, that life is a game and God loves us all. I’m going to hang out with friends, jam and probably get a bit drunk.

December 21st, 2012 has been a special date for me for a while now, mainly because it was such a prominent plot point in Grant Morrison’s The Invisibles, a comic about chaos magicians fighting ancient conspiracies run by eldritch abominations. It sort of became the charter myth of my adolescence for a while, still kind of is though Mage: the Ascension has been mixed in with it. So I’ve been pretty focused on this date, even coming up with an entire trilogy of novels as a teenager based on this date. It would have been bad and silly, would have ripped of the plot of Seven Samurai of all things, casting it against the backdrop of Apocalypse, and involved a man trying to do a musical version of Salman Rushdie’s The Satanic Verses. I’ve worked out what I hope to be a better 2012 novel, which won’t be dated by Saturday. It involves a rag-tag group of magicians trying to align humanity’s chakras or whatever before the Mayan Calender runs out. It’s Magic Realism and it’s a comedy.

So besides the Mayan Apocalypse I have had something of an interesting time. I had my first romantic relationship, which wasn’t so much a relationship as a long fling, which ended in disaster and heartbreak. It’s been awhile so I’m fine talking about it, but not in great detail. To put it into some perspective, I spent the last few days after meeting her with my heart-broken more than it has ever been broken before, before realizing with the help with my parents that this woman couldn’t love me in any way that would have helped me. I bring this up because I see a certain resonance between the emotional breakdown I just went through and the alleged upcoming Doomsday.

Back to said Doomsday, I believe it’s  only fair to say that the Mayans don’t think it’s the end of the world. Yes, the Mayans are alive. I was surprised as anyone to hear that. They’re doing alright everything considered, since they have experts to deal with their calendar, such as it is. Observe the following article, found on CNN.

“It’s an era. We are lucky to see how it ends,” said wood carver Santos Esteban in Yaxuna, a sleepy village of fewer than 700 Mayans, located in a territory that once belonged to the ancient kingdom founded around 2000 B.C.

He feels it is a momentous occasion and is looking forward to the start of the new age. He is not afraid.

“Lots of people say it’s the end of the world, but we don’t believe that,” he said.

I’ve been aware of this interpretation for a while. It’s been the one I’ve favoured for the most part, since Doomsday is kind of a downer. At the very least, the Mayans are restarting their calendar and Terrence McKenna shouldn’t have taken the voices of aliens he meet via psychedelics so seriously. The fact remains as to why the Mayan Apocalypse is said to be the end of the world by crazy survivalists and jokers on the Internet. I’ve been getting all kinds of memes that say Galactus is going to eat us or there will be zombies eating us (Will people just shut up about the zombies already), but it all comes down to us being devoured by something or other. Meteors are popular too, in which case we will all be devoured in flame I suppose.

Basically, people want to world to end because we all kind of know our current system is fucked. I mean really, the environment is going through drastic changes and we’re saying that God wants to punish us for gay marriage. If God is going to punish us for anything, which Divine Love will probably prevent, it’s going to be messing with the balance of the ecosystem. I found an article on this sort of thing on Boing Boing.

And that aspect of human nature exposes the real impetus behind our childlike fascination with end times. People everywhere yearn for inner change – for a way to detach from the cycle of routine daily existence, with its conflicts, habits, addictions, worries, and boredoms. We’re surrounded by therapeutic and religious ideas – yet the wish for change and personal fulfillment is almost always unfulfilled. So, in our frustration, we look without. We hope that some kind of seismic shift will rescue us from the inability to alter ourselves. Scary as it may be, the end of what we know promises to rupture old patterns and push us toward something new.

So there it is. We want something to shock us out of the sink hole of a civilization we have found ourselves in. We’re to cozy and we know it, so we try to come up with stories about a sharp enough shock to get us out of the funk materialism and capitalism has put on us. I include myself in this, I will probably shortly revert to my usual ways of fiddling around on the Internet and generally screwing around.

After the break-up with the girlfriend, a relationship that was a huge mistake looking back, I believe I have come out stronger, knowing more about myself and my desires. I have gone through a change, but considering it all now I don’t know how big of a change this actually is. I remember her saying something about spiritually awakening me, but I am doubtful she ever had that capability and was just saying that to keep me around. I do feel, after going out with her and the disastrous emotional break down she put me through, that I have undergone a change, and I feel better for it. All in all, I am expecting 2013 to be a very good year for me.

FURTHER READING

Ben Brumfield, “Some believe Friday is doomsday on the Mayan Calendar; the Mayans don’t”

Horowitz, Mitch. “Once More Awaiting ‘The End'”

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I’m going to be performing at the Ontario International Poetry Slam.

Yes, that’s right. I, Dylan Tern will be performing in a poetry slam with poets across the continent. So you all go to the website and buy yourself an all-access ticket, because beside me there are poets with actual presence and clout in the slam poetry world. Poets like Brian Omni Dillon, Kait Rokowski and Lauren Zuniga. It should be an exciting day of poetry.

The Quest Begins

I should have mentioned this earlier, but I am on a quest. I’ve been on it more or less a week and a half, and my goal is to find a new poetic sound. This sound, despite being a new sound, is also an old sound, and should be representative of a rebirth of a bardic tradition where the poet was as much shaman and sorcerer as entertainer. My goal is to make poetry primal again, to make it as dangerous as a good rock and roll concert. I’m not foolish enough to believe that this is something that I am starting with, in fact I am purposefully going in the paths of people before me, mainly the one that has come from the Beat poets and those who came after.

This all happpened because for the most part I’m still not sure I’m as good as I could be. Yes, people tell me I’m good, but it’s a very small number of people. I also don’t get published, which could just be the machinations of the literary review publishers, but I’m not going to ask them why their secret cabal won’t publish my genius. The fact is, I want to write better and I’m not really sure I’m reaching that potential.

There’s also my interest in occultism and various magical paths, such as Voodoo and Ancient Bardic traditions. Sometime in High School I figured being an occultist would be really awesome, mainly from reading comic books by Alan Moore and Grant Morrison, and as I have done various armchair research into magickal paths, I have found that there has been a tradition of magickal poetry. This includes poetry most people know about, Coleridge’s “Kubla Khan,” has some positevly Thelemic elements about it. This worldview has been bouncing around, and I think that at least part of my poetic inspiration is coming from occult ideas. I’m not really sure if I’m going to become an actual magician, but that’s a blog for another time.

Tonight’s the Night, a review of sorts

It’s either 3:24 or 4:24 AM as I write this depending on how late I want this to be. Tonight is Vinyl Club, which is my Dad’s thing more than mine because he has a record player. I have five albums I am willing to listen to more than once, and I keep them at home because I have nothing to listen to them with. I don’t know if my Dad ever listens to them, but I doubt it. Anyways, the point is that tonight is Vinyl Club night and I usually involve myself in the proceedings. Some of the guys are staying over because, well they can. All the women of the family are in Halifax.

At the moment we are listening to “Tonight’s the Night,” by Neil Young. My Dad says this is his desert island album. My Dad likes Neil Young a lot, which is fair; Neil Young is good at what he does. Still the story behind the album is a bit depressing. Basically two of Neil Young’s friends ODed in the same amount of time, so to commemorate their death he and a bunch of other musicians got really waisted late at night and made this album. I’m not really sure how that’s supposed to make sense, but the only thing keeping me awake is Coca Cola and the fact I can’t show weakness in front of all these married guys who have day jobs. I’m in my twenties and the vast majority of my friends are poets and independent musicians. By all accounts I should be able to stay awake for five days being sustained only by absinthe and crackers. Not that I plan on doing so, because that would be crazy. Being a bohemian poet doesn’t mean I’m insane. God.

But my Dad really likes “Tonight’s the Night,” and that’s the point. He was talking about why he liked it, but I can’t remember what he said. I think it had something to do with the emotion in the album, that Neil Young had two of his best friends OD in such a short time and the only way he could make sense of this grief was to get totally waisted and make an album. When you think about it, a lot of albums were probably made like that in the seventies, but this one has an actual point. This isn’t getting fucked up because it’s the nineteen seventies, this is the fucking dark night of the soul; he’s crossing the fucking abyss right now, and what’s even more this is some damn good music. This is the best sounding dark night of the soul ever put to vinyl, and that’s really the most fucked up thing of all.

I don’t even know what time it is, because it’s late and day light savings time so all the clocks are changing. It’s nuts. I’m messed up, but not nearly as fucked up as the people on this album. You should all listen to this record, but at 1 in the morning. So if you have a free night you should listen to this album. All of you. Thank you for reading.