August 29, 2012

I spent the summer wasting
The time was passed so easily
But if the summer's wasting
How come that I could feel so free

Lee Balterman, Crossed Fingers, 1962

* Reminder that The Dust Congress fundraiser/contest continues. Information for entry at the previous link. Grand prize: a signed copy of the most recent Chuck Prophet record (co-written by klipschutz), Temple Beautiful. Other prizes include music by The Caribbean and Plums.

Below, Klipschutz interviews Klipschutz regarding Temple Beautiful and more....!

Q: Great album! And it sounds better when you actually pay for it, I hear.

A: Good question. I’ll pass that on.

Q: You are a poet, whatever that means. When it comes to writing with Chuck, do you do the lyrics and he does the music?

A: No, I do everything! You want the truth? I can’t handle it but maybe you can. We sit in a room South of Market and listen to music on Chuck’s $29 record player from 1977. Chuck plays guitars, pounds on the keys, occasionally sits behind a drum kit. I pace and get nervous and have to walk down the hall and urinate a lot. Chuck sings out nonsense, or half-sense lines. Then I start to “sing.” God help him when I “play” tambourine. Lunchtime rolls around. We usually go to Split Pea Seduction. The songs write themselves while we’re out.

Q: So, seriously, how did Temple Beautiful come together?

A: We’ve both lived in San Francisco since forever, and move in overlapping circles. Hopefully, we both brought our strengths to the room. Collaboration is odd. Some days the wires cross and he’s the poet and I’m borderline musical. The shorter answer is we got lucky.

Q: Does it bother you when journos refer to Chuck as the songwriter on the album?
A: Everything bothers me. Having to write these questions bothers me. The music business is unusual – or so I’ve heard; they keep turning down my application. Chuck works like twenty seven demons to make all this happen. At the end of the day – more days than not – we’re great friends. Nothing’s perfect, except miscommunication.

Q: You and Chuck had a 10 year falling out. Over what?

A: Money. There was too much of it. Stephanie Finch helped us get past our differences. That is a true fact, as opposed to the other kind.

Q: How did you get together with Dust Congress.

A: Andy put up one of my poems. I wrote him a note. I tend to dig most things he puts up, even poems by poets I don’t like. And it’s a mix, always surprising. The excerpts and rare finds are illuminating. He should be editing Harper's.

August 27, 2012

what comes is better than what came before

Yitzhak Livneh, Astonishment No. IX, 2004

* From Harper's September 2012:

-- Estimated portion of Columbian cocaine revenue that is laundered through banks in First World countries: 9/10

-- Average number of eggs a bedbug will lay after feeding on "clean" human blood: 44

-- After feeding on blood with an alcohol content of 0.10: 12

-- Chances a Republican believes today that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction at the time of the 2003 invasion: 2 in 3

* "Everything you know, nobody else knows, and everything you imagine or see belongs to you alone. What you write comes out of that, both in the trivial and deepest sense." -- James Salter

August 23, 2012

Saw you at a party
You asked me to dance
Said music was great for dancing
I don't really dance much
But this time I did
And I was glad that I did this time

iri5, Bob Dylan, cassette tape on canvas, 2009

-- by Arthur Sze

Let me pick
olives in the moonlight.
Let me ride
a pale green horse.
Let me taste the autumn fires.
Or else,
let me die in a war.

Citrus Freeze
-- by Forrest Gander

To the north, along Orange Blossom Trail,
thick breath of sludge fires.
Smoke rises all night, a spilled genie
who loves the freezing trees
but cannot save them.
Snow fine as blown spiders.
The news: nothing.
Large rats breed on the beach
driving smaller ones here.
Today both traps sit sprung.

One Art
-- Elizabeth Bishop

The art of losing isn't hard to master;
so many things seem filled with the intent
to be lost that their loss is no disaster.

Lose something every day. Accept the fluster
of lost door keys, the hour badly spent.
The art of losing isn't hard to master.

Then practice losing farther, losing faster:
places, and names, and where it was you meant
to travel. None of these will bring disaster.

I lost my mother's watch. And look! my last, or
next-to-last, of three loved houses went.
The art of losing isn't hard to master.

I lost two cities, lovely ones. And, vaster,
some realms I owned, two rivers, a continent.
I miss them, but it wasn't a disaster.

---Even losing you (the joking voice, a gesture
I love) I shan't have lied. It's evident
the art of losing's not too hard to master
though it may look like (Write it!) like disaster.

August 21, 2012

the sun highlights the lack in each

Decoy, The Beach, 2008

* Mary Woronov talking about the East/West divide when Warhol's Exploding Plastic Enivitable went to California with the Velvet Underground (from Martin Torgoff's Can't Find My Way Home: America in the Great Stoned Age, 1945-2000):

"We spoke two completely different languages. We were on amphetamine and they were on acid. They were so slow to speak with these wide eyes - 'oh wow!' - so into their 'vibrations'; we spoke in rapid machine-gun fire about books and paintings and movies. They were into 'free' and the American Indian and going 'back to the land' and trying to be some kind of 'true, authentic' person; we could not have cared less about that. They were homophobic; we were homosexual. Their women, they were these big round-titted girls, you would say hello to them and they would just flop on the bed and fuck you; we liked sexual tension, S&M, not fucking. They were barefoot; we had platform boots. They were eating bread they baked themselves - and we never ate at all!"

* Self-portraits drawn whilst high on 45 different drugs, by Bryan Lewis Saunders.

August 16, 2012

it's a city full of animals, a city full of theives
a city full of lovers trying hard to make believe

William Eggleston


For a while now, the new Chuck Prophet release Temple Beautiful has been on heavy rotation here at Dust Congress HQ. Since DC House Poet klipschutz co-wrote the songs, we thought to showcase the disc, raise some money for a worthy cause and hand out some prizes...

Tickets: $2 (or more) US apiece (enter as many times as you want)
ALL contest entry fees will be donated to the American Heart Association (Paypal’s rake-off and mailing costs will be absorbed by Dust Congress.)

1st Prize: Autographed Temple Beautiful (Vinyl LP version)
and 7” single of “I Call Your Name”

2nd Prize: Music by Dust Congress approved D.C. bands including The Caribbean (PopMatters named their album, Discontinued Perfume, best indie-pop record of 2011), The Cut Ups and Plums

3rd Prize: A copy of ALL ROADS...But This One signed by all four authors

Enter by making a Paypal payment to Include name, email address and full mailing address (outside of U.S. okay too).

On Friday September 14, 2012, a drawing will be held, with names in a hat – videotaped and put up on Youtube – to select the prize winners. Please direct any questions to


“...overstuffed with songs worthy of repeat listens.” - David Malitz, The Washington Post

“Not since Lou Reed paid homage to the city and era that forged him with New York has there been a song cycle dedicated to a place and reality that offers the core immediacy with the thump, churn and ferocity of Chuck Prophet’s Temple Beautiful.” - Paste

“On one hand, it’s raw and stripped down, but on the other it’s expertly crafted – the sound of streets thousands of miles away brought into your living room, with all the lives that traverse along them.” - BBC

Other review: NPR

Videos: White Night, Big City, The Left Hand and the Right Hand

And: a short film about the making of Temple Beautiful

August 9, 2012

I'm gonna be perfect from now on
I'm gonna be perfect starting now

Mary Ellen Mark, Central Park, 1967

Listening To Procol Harum With A Fatal Arrythmia In Stand By
-- Dennis Mahagin

To ghost fly

the red eye

under the weather,

as if to kick start

the afterlife
we'll all be


Or lie
down in turbulence,
and hope it gets


beach pail,

belly up
in a hail

of radio

static --

skip a light
fandango, turn

it's automatic


on a midnight flight

some misbegotten

broken up, aisle seat

17 - A,

token of the din

of the ear drum in
heartbeat, alabaster

faster, faster

no sleep comes

for days


or a walk on cold




between the toes

she said there is no reason

when a miller


of a dirge


heavens from key
of C, at first just


fugue classic
rock, B 3

Hammond, big chill

where the air's


t h i n n e r,

the air's getting

t h i n n e r . . .

stewardess hits

dimmer switch,
her nails pared


in shimmer,

nose cone

she stalls,

you can't


Sir ... are you sure
you're gonna be okay?


It's only the verse
got you

peaked ...

( and worst
on its way )

it's a shuffle

yet you keep it

need not
answer her


August 6, 2012

I wish I had all the money
we used to spend on dope

Tod Papageorge, Central Park, 1978

* * From an interview of Ed Sanders of the Fugs, originally published May 12, 1967 in the Berkeley Barb [via an Arthur Magazine email] excerpt:

"Interviewer: I take it you're not as optimistic as Tuli [Kupferberg] seems to be about the possibility of radical socio-political change in America?

"Ed Sanders: My motto is 'Fuck God in the ass.' I don't have any faith at all in the efficacy of politics. I don't know what's going to happen. I'm political — I vote and hustle and hike, fight and scream. Non-violently. I don't know what to do. We just try. I assume that what people want is a transformation of the society, right? They want to set up a new type of government, a new type of methods for doing almost everything, from handling the A&P to handling the problems of war and peace — so how is it done? I read everything I can read, and I go to all the demonstrations, and nobody's even set up a cabinet - they ought to set up some sort of rebel cabinet and issue big decrees all the time about where it is they're pissed off. I don't know. The way to do it is really be militant, man, and get after them … the bastards.

"Ogar: What about loving your enemy to death?

"Sanders: Love is a strong force if used by a whole bunch of people. Love vibrations have to be simple. Love energy is like -- it melts rather than discriminates, and that's all right. But ..I don't see how you could disrupt the war machinery with love, because human beings are, like, abstracted from the war machine. That's the way they've developed it through electronics and computers. The further away an idea or an institution is from the human mind, the harder it is to dissolve it with love. It's like trying to make love to an electricity cable, because that's what it is, … it's all electricity on cards and memory units. If you don't have any love targets, you know, your love vectors can't grope in on somebody and try to transform them."

* Thumbs Off, by The Clean

* "I would like to believe that love is the only energy I’ve ever used as a writer." –Athol Fugard