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Sifting Randomness

There are two pieces of advice gathered in the past 17 years I would like to share here.

“Learn Mandarin.” 

This was the advice I was given as I looked over the edge of Viktor Frankl’s, Man’s Search for Meaning, on the Blue Line ride from Randolph Street copywriting job back to my studio apartment on the borderlands of Wicker Park, Bucktown, and Logan Square -Chicago neighbourhoods undergoing their facade lifts and rent spikes. He spoke to me more, and with increasingly detailed explantations about his economic and stock market research. From the smell and looks of things on his side of the train, a bath or sewn closed shoes hadn’t exerted his mind. The intensity at which he conveyed his messaged showed his focus wasn’t on hygiene as much as it were on sorting impending disaster, however real or imagined. I folded my book about finding meaning in my lap to listen, as I had been leaning through a snippets of Nietzsche. I was briefly alleviated from understanding trauma by tuning into his presentation. The man assured me before departing a stops before mine, to learn Mandarin if I wanted to survive the future. 17 years later I would recount this story to friends in a cafe in Norway, pondering life’s choices-filled by the understanding meaning as fully constructed form of social exchange and language a means of navigation through the maritime age of land living.


“Exercise the demons.” 

Every night no matter where I have lived, I walk, at night. Everyone I meet, save for a few, tell me how dangerous this is, and how I must be inviting myself to harm. I’ve always found the evening stroll healthy for my mind, and better for my body. Aside from the immediate benefits, I am permitted to witness sage stray animals take off with their bounty, learn the limits and expand the range of my audible sensation, and attune the hair on the back of my hand impulse of whether the dark is safe or not. Looking both ways before crossing is important day or night, and one night I had looked left then right, and began to cross I heard the bell out of the dark, from the left-and a wavy haired man on a bike exclaiming, “You’ve got to exercise those demons.” Indeed, night or day, movement sets our bodies and minds from from all the memories and ideas that trap us in our homes.

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12 Februar 2018. Oslo, Norway

R Wolfe

Gore Up the Mountain

every morning the people woke

not to work but to media repeating

the guilt made motive preyed upon born freedom

the belief for which we must fight

the lie of good exercised as virtue in social servitude

another form of self-flagellation

distrust in motives divided those private demons

vented through palms to public forms

our digital mediums morphing

our bodies into detonation devices

mostly which with two legs and two arms

contains a heart and a breath

the fix made by belief in the problem

a policy of addiction formed

support groups and steps for the self made weak to follow

for we are to rely upon each other

to build a more ideal world

and the people fought and bickered

wasting away all their days

because they believed the capital was to heavy

and values ought be free

the hippies tried escape

and no one made it out sane or unaltered

the eloquence of the universe

believed by some buyable by pill

the beggars and thieves sit mighty

amongst the virtue signals of so called advanced societies

the desires burning the men alive

and their bodies became ashes propelled by design

the motor of desire to rid the feeling of the lack

chasing them up their backs

warm bodies made cold

by the isolation of those

who will ask and ask and ask

always wanting of us more

those who live in peace

resigned to stand firm with the value of life

not flinch at those who cry for more

who beg for more

who will do whatever they can reason

to shake a little bit more out

of them for me

Each day I work to stand a bit more

free from any kind of belief

and exercise fewer postures

unwaveringly designed to signal

the lie that I could know a better way

a better way for what and for whom

what care have I what you put in your guts

or thoughts in your mind

its your life to do with what you so choose

and so let those who go on claiming virtue sing their sirens

and I’ll keep on driving my feet into the soil

each step at a time

9 February 2018. Oslo, Norway

R Wolfe