Wednesday, February 12, 2014


I used to dream  at intervals of a great feast  in Heaven. One such dream followed the news of the death of the poet James Merrill--the living and the dead were joined together in some atemporal hall which outstared 
Versailles, and we amused ourselves by  aiming  paper airplanes of poetic inspiration into top hats
which had a direct pipeline to the minds of various poets on earth.. My old dad--who  is still alive--was invited to this fete because he has a touch of the poet. 

Another such party was conducted after I successfully managed to get the composer, Gustav Mahler,
to complete his fourth symphony. I had been assigned this task by The Old One as  He sat in the heavenly library--which resembled the Century Club--and was sent to earth to do such things as play sleighbells at his window (cf. the beginning of the Fourth) or put a dram of brandy in the cat's milk, to inspire the drunken scherzo. Fortunately, I was invisible.  
At the end of this Mahler dream--the Mahler 4th concludes with children's games in heaven---there was a huge party in heaven, much like the conclusion of the biography of Tibetan saint, Milarepa, when he achieves
enlightenment. Nagas, Dakinis, Apsaras rained down from the firmament holding lanterns and colored umbrellas
It seemed to me that the purpose of Mahler writing the Fourth symphony was to extend the borders of heaven,
that his music enlarged it. And the soprano solo was the music of the sacred bride,the feminine Godhead or deepest Nature, who The Old One had missed for eternity.
This dream makes me happy to think of  it even now, though I am also perfectly aware that the finale of the Mahler fourth was actually a movement left over from the  third symphony, which was already gigantesque.
Also that the Mahler  4th was  published in 1903.

Such are the spiritual metaphors by which we drive our own stories forward, no more than that..Even so,
I have drawn many such fetes in heaven, of which these are two, from 1996. They,too, were done to the Sufi Dzhir. The first illustration and the  third  are the two drawings in their entirety. The second,the fourth ,and fifth are details.

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