Monday, April 26, 2010

Breakfast with Orfeo

I love the mornings. I’ve always loved them, everywhere I am. When I wake up and the silt of the dream of night turns into the absurd thoughts of the dream of the waking day, and the air is fresh and new and the birds are chattering away in thoughtless conversation, I get to start thinking “Breakfast.”

Today it consisted of my Nescafe with milk in an Acropolis museum mug, egg and tomato fried in olive oil over twice baked, hard as a rock, Cretan rusk with oregano and basil, a little cheese, five olives, and three dried mangoes given by Filappino tourists as a “tip”

While I eat, I take the pesky thoughts that are boring their way through my brain, one by one, and I decide which ones count. The tedious things on my illusory “to-do” list. The paintings I haven’t painted. The friends I haven’t written. I catch them, like little firebugs, and put them in jars to observe them and decide, “shall I deal with you today? Or shall I not?”

Today I happened to have in front of my a French art magazine and my laptop. My fellow one hundred dayer captured doves outside his house after his morning ride. I closed my eyes and I was in Texas, hearing the occasional squall of the sharp-eyed grackel cutting into the cloud of coos. It finished, I finished (breakfast) and slowly turned the pages of my magazine. I traveled across Africa, Paris, India, and Russia without leaving my breakfast table. I saw details of intricately carved flowers in the marble walls of the Taj Mahal, the glass and iron dome of the salon d’ atomne, the extraterrestrial wooden horseman as envisioned by a craftsman from Niger, until I stopped with a sharp intake of breath at this preliminary drawing of the death of Orpheus by Gustav Dore.

The doves outside of my kitchen walls mixed with the high chirp of wiley sparrows, and I asked myself, "what's missing?" A deep baseline, strumming slowly, unpredictable chord progressions in polite accompaniment to their chorus filled my mind. I got goose bumps.

My own composition to trick Hades into letting me bring back my beloved.

Then, I had to listen: