“. . . Though sympathetic, the judge ruled that Blount (aka Sun Ra) was violating the law and was at risk for being drafted into the U.S. military. Blount responded that if inducted, he would use military weapons and training to kill the first high-ranking military officer possible. The judge sentenced Blount to jail (pending draft board and CPS rulings), and then said, “I’ve never seen a nigger like you before” ; Blount replied, “No, and you never will again.”
1. witnessed during the time just before dawn.
dark bodies . . . overlap, with the Atlantic always lapping at our shores.
imagine simultaneous teeth grinding, each and every one of us having the same dream, at the same moment, on the same night. that’s what it is like to wake up forgetting something that you’ve never known in the first place. upon waking, our sharpest tools begin to dull as the light of day demands legibility and translation. switch. code. switch switch.
2. scientific knowledge
salinity : dense enough to float a thick thighed body
temperature : warm enough to swim at night in August
depth : everything is in here. yes everything
flora : entire forests and vast decaying cities that can only be seen in dreams.
fauna : when the stars are out, they’re reflected in dark water. one particular ocean dwelling species is capable of outlasting all the rest by drinking the starlight as its filtered through the fast moving glassy surface of the water. that substance, fortified and metabolized during sleep, allows the species to see itself clearly for fleeting moments of ecstatic frustration.
3. journeying to space above/space below
black people need scuba gear to breath on land.
4. trajectories : melancholy, hopeful and otherwise.
Sun Ra was sent to prison for refusing to go to war and for being a smart weird piano playing faggot. While there, psychiatrists diagnosed him as being a smart weird piano playing faggot. When he left prison and moved to Chicago, he continued to be a smart weird piano playing faggot. When he began to write the strangest and most beautiful music, he did it as a smart weird piano playing faggot. When he lived in Oakland and then New York, consorting with various black nationalist organizations, he remained a smart weird piano playing faggot. After deciding that he no longer identified with any particular race, but rather sought transcendence to another plane of existence, he just kept on being a smart weird piano playing faggot. Sun Ra became a fixture in Philadelphia in the 80s, where he started to become an old smart weird piano playing faggot. And when he had a stroke in 1990, he kept composing and playing like the smart weird piano playing faggot that he was. When Sun Ra opened for Sonic Youth for a few shows in the early 1990s, he was most certainly a smart weird piano playing faggot. And when he went home to Birmingham, Alabama to see his estranged sister of 40 years, caught pneumonia and died there in 1993, he had absolutely returned to the earth from which he came as a smart weird piano playing faggot.
5. this salty body breaths, fervently.