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Diary Entry for the New Year

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'Infinite regress selfie'
'Infinite regress selfie'
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Diary Entry for the New Year

by John Kendall Hawkins

Well, another year down. At 65 years old, it's beginning to feel like Watership Down. Bleak. And Blake. And Black. And Blue. Wish me luck putting another calendar year behind!

Major accomplishments last year. I set out to write a sonnet per day (on average) so that at year's end I would have 365 sonnets in the basket. Some were so good I almost reconverted to Catholicism in celebration, but Nietzsche pulled me back at the last minute. So God is dead to me again, but the sonnets live on. Of course, there were a number of duds. Not many. I set out to have a collection I called Everyday Sonnets (soon to be on sale) that deliberately highbrow/lowbrow and eschewed (gesundheit) any attempt at strict adherence to Canon-era rules, although I wouldn't mind a return to a Canon, if it were modified to include Toni Morrison. I failed at times, but at least I tried. I succeeded in producing more than 365 sonnets and, technically, finished a month early, as I didn't resolute (v.) until mid-February (See hangover.) The deluge at the end was truly something to behold -- some 50 fuckin sonnets published here in the last month. I imagined Hitler being driven mad in his bunker with each new poem, which provided the energy I needed to carry on, when I just did not think I could myself bear much more.

I found that I could have gone on and on. You get in an inertial momentum zone and want to keep driving down that lone dark highway, pedal to the metal. Scary. And worrisome, as I went so el tropo (as the Aussies say) in the end that it threw my review-writing and political-screed-writing off some.

In the new year (we'll see how far I get), I've decided to take one last shot at a working resolution. I will write and publish poetry here (not necessarily sonnets, not necessarily not) once per week -- Friday or Saturday, beginning the 14th of Jan. Also, I will try to produce one book review per week (I've got a backlog of dozens) and one lament about the human condition per week. So, three pieces in all. This plan represents a best case scenario. I will not produce more than this, and may produce less.

Since I'll be dying soon, by hook or by crook, naturally or un-, and have found myself these past 12 years in a new paradigm situation that has a vision of humanity I won't pass on here, I've decided to further enrich my lifelong quest for new learning, understanding, existential meaning. I feel a lot like I missed something BIG in my go round with wise old ancients of Greece and Rome and must endeavor to return like a repentant grasshopper to the smartass blind guy in Kung Fu and go, Wah?

Cosmology is in the cards. Chemistry studies. And the biospheres. I'll probably go back to Catal Huyuk for another glimpse at the matrilineal options of the past. Check it out:

Still from One Million Years B.C, starring Raquel Welch as Ur-woman.
Still from One Million Years B.C, starring Raquel Welch as Ur-woman.
(Image by 20th Century Fox)
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Still from One Million Years B.C, starring Raquel Welch as Ur-woman.

As you can see, like Jimmy Carter, I myself have known lust in the heart for matrilineal assets of the past. Although I didn't publish my lust in Playboy just before my hoped-for re-election. Talk about October surprises! And you'll note that the fashion industry was in full swing even back 1 Mil BC. I'm told animals were jumping out of their skin to be love-worn. That sounds sexist. But it was the '60s of prehistory. (Rock and Roll was a little different, but essentially unchanged.) You don't wanna know what Abbie Hoffman looked like back then! Although you can probably blame him for where we are today -- Revolution for the Hell of It! -- un-huh. Note also, reader, early signs of spear-phishing for our desires. Don't ask me about what was clicked. Maybe sexist, but not as bad as that other paean to crazy gobble-them-up sexuality that gave my teen years nightmares, Peter Bogdanovich's Voyage to the Planet of Prehistoric Women. Next up, Planet of the Apes. And more recently the ultra-scary Planet of the Humans.

So that's the plan. Go back to the oldies, who had it right, probably, until we blew it all by going all dinosaur's revenge with the oil. Now we're fucked. And Don't Look Up, which I watched recently, is not really a satire. We are getting that goofy and careless. It'll end up all Caligula in the end, massive orgies of power exertion, involving horsepower, horseplay, and ancient alchemical principles of precious bodily fluid exchanges. Remember in Dr. Strangelove how Buck Turgidson, the occasionally morose character played by George C. Scott lights up when he's told that the silver lining to nuclear war and starting civilization over again underground will be that each man will be assigned 10 women to procreate with *see image above). Talk about Big Love -- without the Mormon sass? And the glass ceiling still needs busting.

I'm also thinking of finishing a PhD, or starting a new one, I dunno, in science or something. I was doing a doctorate in creative writing and finished the creative "artefact," but stalled with exegesis that required a running account of my juicy processes as I went. I didn't stop one kind of writing to do the other, to exegete (v.) the way I needed to. It seemed stupid. Then I realized pursuing a PhD in creative writing was stupid. Do-able but stupid. At 65 what would I do with the sheepskin? Wipe my ass? And who would give up creative writing to teach it at a university? Why would you listen to them lecture you on writing? But I guess it's a milestone rather than a millstone. So maybe. We'll see. I dunno.

I'd love to travel again. Maybe Japan. Although I wouldn't want to get in hot water with the Jacuzzis, said to be vicious and unforgiving. There's a park there I long to see called the Sea of Trees. Also sushi is available on the trains. They're super fast. So you can imagine the chop-chop handiwork of the chef.

The question remains will I ever return to my beloved USA before the train runs me over? I feel like I need to stretch my legs, walk toward the sea for three months in an even longer tracking shot than the one that closed one of my favorite all-time movies, with depressing amounts of resonance, The 400 Blows. (Got milk?)

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John Kendall Hawkins is an American ex-pat freelance journalist and poet currently residing in Oceania.

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