notes for a story or brainstorming for a list
first, some important quotations:
"'This is the immortal flower. A geometry of yellow, Nobody in the foreground or the background. Instead, positioned there she is. Straddling the calyx: a blue woman, holding two babies in her arms. They are wrapped in turn with a jute blanket embroidered with stars.' - A.
What are the maximum and minimum forms a memory can take?
Here on the table in front of me is a drawing of ‘the immortal flower’ (lotus) A., my mother, drew at the height of her illness, two weeks ago. There are 8,000 petals, and in the most enlightened beings this planet has hosted, perhaps only 4 of these petals were opened, my mother informs me. The lotus and the petals constitute: the crown chakra.
What would it be to live a life in which even one petal was unfurled?" - Bhanu Kapil
"The Bitter-Rose grew at the top of the highest peaks. Whoever eats it discovers that whenever he is about to tell a lie, out loud or only to himself, his tongue begins to burn. He can still tell lies, but then he is warned. Several people have seen the Bitter-Rose: from what they say, it resembles a kind of thick, multicolored lichen, or a swarm of butterflies. But no one has ever picked it, for the slightest trembling of fear nearby alarms it and it retreats into the rock. Now, even if a man desires it, he is always a little afraid of possessing it, and it promptly disappears." - Mount Analogue, René Daumal
Haremint Songs for Jaw Harp and Voice.
i sow to my Spirit and reap from my flesh
i sow to my own flesh but reap from the Spirit
i seek the mint in the body
it is lodged somewhere
i look for it with my mind
Haremint, you do not need my sorry words. You thrive in parched patches, in canyons and on scarps. However, there is little one such as myself can do to show my gratitude for your patience with me. If you will allow me, I will struggle a while with my scraps of words and the echoes of my jaw, to attempt to praise your virtues and channel your glories.
O jubilant bitterness, I praise you for your depths which are unplumbable; I praise the ensorcelling stupor you set upon the tongue; I praise the crisp scent you send forth when brushed against. Three one-eared hares were born on three different equidistant mountains. Each calls to each, but it cannot hear.
here i am wandering and i brush against your leaves, and you create aromatic winds
some herbaceous, some citrus
your leaves are covered in white oily dots
your white and pink flowers, like bleached or blushing tongues, lap up the sun
your bitterness no honey can tame
your sharp flavor matched only by your spines
you collect dust and debris like wool
the divine farmer holds an amulet in the shape of the primordial leaf, they expound on the flora thema
the haremint bush is a cloud of butterflies. in the sun, it extends its essence to the left: the tree which bears amulets as its fruits.
each flower sings a prayer for 4000 days, the discs of its petals shine in the dew
resplendent bees the size of birds are drawn from the ether to sup on their mild nectar, which brings about a state of bliss without fullness,
when the nectar enters the body through the mouth, it seeks its exit through the eyes in the form of visions
the bees see their small cousins dreaming below, collecting meager pollen which fills without bliss
the elder bees understand: dreams find no purchase here. all water seeming is just so seeming, evaporated right as it is wrung out of the lungs or the stomata. upwards, insight is held in the clouds' hands. this nectar so mild is full of light, shuffled behind that cloud now, trapped under the horizon then, dragged across the sky soon, ever wherever it twists the mind towards its future origin.
five seasons, nine seasons, mine seasons, sixteen seasons, sons!
the entire universe was a long ear. it spanned the perpetual east and the endless west, it stretched to the boundless north and the bottomless south. it was so large that it broke under its own tension, and fell to earth in three pieces.
the three ears touched the ground close to one another - each tip almost touchin–like a triangle. rather than grow and grow in all directions, the ears began to grow a hare at each point, a hare radiating out to connect two ears.
one day, one of the three hares grew restless, wishing to explore the desert by itself. saying “there are three of us, and each deserves our own ear, it’s only fair!" so, it made to break away from its siblings and start on its own
all day it gnawed off one ear, and all evening it pulled and pulled the other, finally ripping free from its neighbor.
one ear tip nicked and the base of the other gaping, it went off into the night.
the hare died, it was a sac of moisture covered in fur
its still body a waterskin, no longer exhaling moisture, metabolism replaced by decay
Forming a torus of hills covered in herbs, which i hold between my hands.
as a sorceress, i once hid in an alpine plant, i noticed many things:
being made into a thick paste
a mysterious horse religion
millet, a small grain (but not the smallest, which is teff), is a blessing
resonant hues / sibilant cues
a cactus combs my hair
the way the cold air and ice knead the ground: the water enters the soil, and turning into ice in the night it contracts the soil, forming runnels in the morning, eventually melting and flowing deeper or sublimating in the dawn
the churning of the ground: the ice constricts dirt into anthill-like shapes and then evaporates
mistaking midges, with their flitting, stochastic dance, for falling ashes
plants praise us with their outward manifestations, their workings within us, and their self sufficient beauty
how does a plant become sacred?
what is haoma?
an illegible smile
is a plant knowledgeable? can a plant know?
we only have our sensory observations and familiarity with the plant's actions. i hesitate to say the plant's mind or soul just yet, because those are both anthropomorphic qualities.
i would like to phytomorphosize the problem. intent, planning, self, and agency are all concepts we ascribe to people and animals, but to apply the concepts to plants without reflection seems incautious.
a lone herb each branch giving the other branches just enough room.
seeming to follow a plan, and improvising on that plan:
touched by light, angling towards the light, setting improvised electrical impulses in motion, echoes of radiance in viriditas:
an aleatory aeolian sun chime.
in another life, i possessed a sasquatch for several thousand years. later, as a human child, i shout from the bus at the cairn in the middle of the field, where that old body is buried
i came into contact with the forest person when it nudged some plants deeper into the ground, seeking tender sage seedlings, it salted the salty plants, it rubbed some leaves and sniffed its fingers, it touched the succulent ice plant leaves, and it found me...
the sasquatch legs were hard lost and well-founded
Ashes were thrown ahead for journey
from the trees, i watched people get advice for birth at hollow tree;
mycelium lightning spidering across my eyes
vegetational attributes, kurganization
from animal to fruit, to fruit to animal
an exhalation of the bitter ground
its flowers blown a thick white vapour
a figurine with a sown field pattern
roots see, leaves, eat
in the beginning there was flesh and spirit.
the two very much wanted to touch, to battle, to join together. the spirit glew and the flesh shook with yearning.
however, as they existed on different planes, the physical and the ethereal, they could not touch. the spirit was immaterial and the flesh was full of substance. the spirit grew forlorn, and the flesh became likewise.
aeons passed, and the flesh became weaker and weaker, while the spirit was as bright as the first day.
one day, the flesh ceased to quiver with longing and became inert. the spirit wept, and its essence flooded the still-empty universe. it cried until there was nothing but water. meanwhile, at the bottom of the water, the first flesh began to soak up the water. it took in the spirit's sadness and became pliant. aeons passed, and the moist flesh became dirt.
the spirit could feel something distant - as though its senses extended beyond the ethereal realm.
aeons once more.
over each passing moment in each passing aeon, the spirit's corporeal sense grew stronger. and it noticed someone else - the flesh - it no longer spoke in its dulcet primordial voice, it felt with touch.
the spirit was close to weeping once more, but stifled the tears for fear of drowning the universe yet again.
you see, but the field feels, lady of the open bitter grass in the field
the doctrine of signatures written backwards
When the plant looks into me
with its light-eating leaves,
what does it see?:
in the middle of the great ocean grows a leaf, whose edge is serrated and covered in fine, bristly hairs. beneath the surface of the water, flowers grow from its lower stems, each flower is the similitude of 8,000 souls, holding their divine plenitude. each flower’s calyx is greenish blue with spiritual perfection.
quenching your thirst with poison
surrounded by order, I look for the wildness that sticks out in defiance
Where in “nature” the settled garden bed calls proud attention to itself, in the sterile car pastures that pave the world over, the slightest errant weed calls forth in warbling song.
The eyes come to crave for wanton destruction, the return to something, the tilling of the field
the elk in the river, perpendicular to the current
brewed with underground water
𐀖𐀲 mi-ta mint
veins a river
after the rains, the way grass points downhill
steel girder bones
i dream of taking my hair down, washing it in the river and letting it flow downstream
"Be idle without rivers or lakes"
forests without trees, rivers without water, plains without grasses, tundras without ice
overwrought then overgrown
cup overflowering! vessel mess hall! missile flower
There are five colors and five changes, five elements, four seasons, four seasons, and four seasons.
hover head under sulphur crag, breathe deep, and sing
lose yourself to laughing
no fees til the end of days
stop pretending super mari
and grapple with the beam
gallows pasta—esper drill
angstrom capital Å
breakwaters cannot break water, only be broken
cludgy cloggy cudgels
and doom surrounding
dream the light web of your body, and gather your sustenance as it blows in with the wind. growing by false suns, and guided by false stars, led deeper into the widening notches in the tree. new life from old, patience, plastic-eating, outlasting the long brutal years of summer in the dark.
the deals reek of benzene rings
you live most of your life in your body
pistils end in dogteeth
the center of the seed a spore
the spore a dreamy flower
sight graying out in the dark
a slurry of stone o'er which i clomb
finding neither golden fleece nor floam
dry stone dykes, some fields, bearded grasses singed by the summer heat. trees thirsty. in the shade, some dead logs with hard fungus. cow in heat hollering
or, cicadas loud and dry air hits you, when your head walks out of the shade -- you step on a root and push yourself up the hill and back into safety - you smell something sweet (sassafras).
looking for slender mountain mint and maypop, but it's too hot.
plait plant plaintive
bone hard bone marrow soft squeeze
bone wisp bone spur : bone whispers
rattle cage cone
smirr pizzle gristle
the hem of my dress, slightly wet
wadding with it hiked up
the chiggers, skeeters, and ticks
the thick hot air full of them
a mountain stream a-flowèn
no soma in them thar hills
just rocks to farm and weeds to munch on
red clover, mountain mint, kudzu
i can be a wisp of smoke,
the filtered flash of sunlight through leaves,
ash on the fingertips
the veins on the underside of a leaf
a mountain mirage image, purple in the distance
have you ever had a scuppernong at forest temperature?
like a baby or a frog
turning off instead of on
like a dream inside a dog
drifting off into nog
by plaited streams
winking waking waulking
seer gas queers chaffe
peerage seepage steerage nonage
anguillette dwellers oft
elver gosh lara croft
warp weft wind mill skin
efts' clefts craft theft
brimstone grindstone, waking dire lover's swoon
no remorse, changing course, remora theodora
salient points; sore joints
saline cream, cure stream
│ s │▓
│ u │▓
│ n │▓
ay me, burthensome brainings!
soil pocked by rain
the way the cold air and ice knead the ground
the water enters the soil, and turning into ice in the night it contracts the soil, forming runnels in the morning, eventually melting and flowing deeper or sublimating in the dawn
the way ice constricts dirt into anthill-like shapes and then evaporates
bedtime stories for wee weans and hopeless adults
relentlessly hatching eggs (obscure sunlights emitting from them). gourds from my mothers' garden vibrating and humming—until dawn's dawn rises within itself.
i feel the air melt and sway under time's heft and the determination of dogged overdetermination
"here hempen rope tied tight marks the boundary"
my dress fills with the easterly wind, trees inflate as well and sing their soft filtering song. whipped-up leaves follow cloud banks at an offset. the dark gray blue of immanent downpour, and looking straight into the distance, there is light, fleeing.
the cave in that hill and the riverbed under the lake are restful, but everywhere else is seething and hurting trying to escape itself
"Be idle without rivers or lakes"
- river-quenched lotus
- the shore of a poisoned lake
- colorado river-hemp
- the flask hovering over the lake
- sour-grained prayer
additional points of reference & miscellaneous quotations
“the flower of knowledge”
"a strange plant, the leaves of which are sprinkled with gold dust, grows on it"
“Under the sea there is a wondrous plant, like a flower with thorns”
“Mandrake has breath by false warning of an emergency (is killed).”
“F733 Fruitful island.”
"a thinking, breathing plant"
"a difficult-to-swallow fruit of an unreachable tree"
“the roots of one species have been fastened to the leaves of another, with flowers from a third”
“open country dreams the forest in the form of a hedgerow” - Matter & Desire
a "star-adorned, spirit-fashioned mortar," and is the guardian of "mountain plants upon the highest mountain peak." (Yasht 10.90)
“The Yazata Haoma, also known by the middle Persian name Hōm Yazad, is the epitome of the quintessence of the haoma plant, venerated in the Hōm Yašt, the hymns of Yasna 9-11”
“the power of life of all the vegetable kingdom”
“the white haoma and the painless tree”
“the juice pressed from it”
"When I sank into a semi-comatose state, he appeared before me with a red flower on his forehead that grew and grew until it became enormous. The petals opened at an increasing tempo and then from the center, a stem sprouted suddenly." The Other Side of the Mountain
†A2710. Plant characteristics as reward
A431.1.2. †A431.1.2. Goddess of fertility of wild forest plants. Hawaii: Beckwith Myth 289.
“like a thoughtless child wandering by a garden just yanking leaves along the way”
Anna Zemánková “her bizarre and mystical herbarium of flowers and plants on paper”
“growing flowers that are not grown anywhere else”
“trees of strange growth”
“Cure by burning grain where man has died.”
“butter of the familiar spirit”
“the ephemeral but incessantly recurring bloom of nature”
"these shaggy hairs and dewlike viscid glands"
“the rhythm of the dividing pair”
"Soma mounts your jaws, your lips, you champion, possessor of the fallow bays, as the soma plant grows on the back of a mountain."
"There are many who live in the mountains and behave as if they were in the town; they are wasting their time."
"Radiance has come into being for the soma plant"
“some confined their delights unto single Plants”
“After Eros, the grapevine sprouted up from the blood which had been poured forth upon the earth. Therefore, those who drink of it are apt to acquire for themselves the lust of intercourse. After the grapevine, a fig tree and a pomegranate tree sprouted up on the earth, and all the other trees, according to their kind, each having their seed within them from the seed of the authorities and their angels.
Then righteousness created a beautiful paradise beyond the orbit of the moon and beyond the orbit of the sun on luxuriant earth which is in the East in the midst of the stones. And desire is found in the midst of its beautiful, tall trees. And the tree of is on the north side of paradise so that it immortal life, as revealed by the will of God, is on the north side of paradise so that it should make immortal the souls of the saints, those who are coming forth from the plasma of poverty at the con-summation of the age. And the hue of the tree of life is like to the sun, and beautiful are its branches. Its leaves are like to those of the cypress tree; its fruit is like unto clusters of white grapes. Its height reaches unto the heavens, and beside it is the tree of knowledge (Gnosis) possessing the power of God. Its glory is like unto the moon, dazzling in brightness, and beautiful are its branches. Its foliage is like unto the leaves of the fig tree. Its fruit is like unto good, large dates. And this is on the north side of paradise so that it should awaken souls from the sleep of the demons, in order that they should come to the tree of life and eat of its fruit and reject the authorities and their angels. The efficacy of this tree is written in the Holy Book:
Thou art the tree of knowledge (Gnosis) which is in paradise, from which the first man ate, awakening his mind. He loved his co-image, and he rejected alien images. He detested them. After this, there sprang up the olive tree which would sanctify the kings and high-priests of righteousness, who would be revealed in the last days. And the olive tree had revealed itself in the light of the first Adam on account of the anointing which they received.
And the first Psyche fell in love with Eros who was with her. She poured forth her blood over him and upon the earth, and from that blood first sprang up on the earth the rose, from whose thorns is gladdened the light which was to be revealed in thethornbush. After this also sprang up the beautiful, sweet-smelling flowers upon the earth, according to their kinds, each from a virgin of the daughters of Pronoia. When these fell in love with Eros, they poured forth he blood on him and upon the earth.
After these things, all the vegetation sprang up on the earth, according to its kind, each possessing seed from the authorities and their angels. After these things, the authorities created from the waters every beast, according to its kind, and every reptile and bird, according to its kind, each possessing seed from the authorities and their angels.” - On the Origin of the World - trans. Rose Horman Arthur
"As his roots awakened to the surrounding soil, and his myriad pores opened to the mordant, wormy, mineral flavor of the earth-draught which, as he now realized, he had been longing for hungrily, he felt his thin subterranean tendrils reaching out like peculiarly sensitive fingers that also can taste, or digital tongues, and all the subtle familiar flavors of burrowing creatures, and annelida, and the vagrant dilutions of zinc, magnesium, and copper, swam into his senses as though he had never been absent from the perennial welcoming earth. At the same time a meticulous balance and suspension of tensions in his stem, branches, and leaves informed him, now being nourished, how the processes of growth within his body were advancing; and this fugue of operations intercalated with the ponderous stress upon one branch that at first caused him fear until, at a lift and rebound, he understood the momentary lighting of a bird, and the dense uniform sequence of gentle shocks over all his leaves that betokened a spattering of rain, and the strange aggressive and dispassionate twisting of his entire frame, as the sun passed across the sky, which experience of torque he felt as inexorably as a flame before a window open to the chilly night.
The boundaries of himself seemed as definite as they’d been when he was a man, but the sensation of physical identity was entirely different. In his human body Rutherford had sensed all his physical processes, with the exception of eating, evacuation, and breathing, to be essentially circular ones; his blood coursed round and round, driven on by the pumping mechanism at the hub of his radiant frame, and if pain or pleasure invaded that frame through a wounded limb or the susceptible eye, it quickly shared its discomfort or exhilaration with every other region of his body, through a sequence of telegraphed signals too swift to be felt as anything other than a rushing, curving thrill. Not so did he sense his bodily existence now; the water he sucked through his delicate grasping roots shot upwards with so blind and forthright an intention, surging through every ramifying sprig of the main avenue of his trunk toward the waiting sky, that he felt at once like some great exfoliating thoroughfare that could be traveled in only one direction, and all the swimming droplets that he admitted were like so many thousands of lemmings coursing irresistibly to the sea. As the water strove up and outwards through every branch, his consciousness seemed to divide into as many compartments as there were veins of travel, and as the flood stretched out into those shallow plains, his leaves, he reflected upon this new physical identity in as many subtle variations on that proposition as he had wide, flat, pointed surfaces, each in itself capable of reflection and absorbing its proportional amount of sun. As the day wore on, the unified fragmentation of his thought, which refracted the meaning of one brooding phenomenon, assumed a more dual, divisive character. The leaves on one side obsessed over the grim, unaccountable singleness of the directional forces within his body, extrapolating pessimistic allegories on the instinct of survival, and constructing arguments to explain and justify its manifest vulgarity; the remaining leaves, on his opposite side, dilated in ecstatic thought on the unity of scientific truth and the unanalyzed insights afforded religious mystics, and swam in an illuminated hope that all the water that rose so unceasingly from the earth established a symbol of the natural heavenward trend of all earthly things, whose existence in this, his own body, must be certain assurance of salvation. Rutherford, in some dim consciousness that preserved itself on the hinterland of these hectic confabulations, was at a loss to explain two moods so ill-fitted to his character, a sophistical theological zealotry, and an equally irrational materialistic pessimism. Then the possibility struck him that the very atmosphere in which he had been planted had undergone some sort of motionless but radical division, which, being utterly natural, had prompted no alarm and caused him no harm. When he roused himself to a variation in temperature entirely concomitant to the severe division of his mood, he realized that he must be intersected by a shadow-line, cast by some unknown object across the way." - The Secret Service by Wendy Walker