Played hooky on my virus last night, which is a strange insidious thing, wearing me down a little, making me spacey and peppering my calves with hives (?!) but otherwise leaving me be. So yeah, I pretended to be fine and crossed town to have dinner with a friend who's in town delivering a paper at Northwestern over the weekend at what appears to be a fascinating conference on Visual Democracy. If I'm able to ignore my virus a little more today I'll head over that way again and try to catch a plenary or two.
But to my point: I was looking up a book title that came up with A.M. over dinner, and found this waiting for me at Amazon, in that helpful way Amazon has of recommending books just for you based on your past purchases (see: the recommendation I received when I was getting reamed by life) and although I'm not yet convinced that I'll buy their recommendation I was glad to browse through to the first poem of the book which summed up so well so many of the things that came up over that good bowl of cassoulet and the late night stroll that followed through Chicago's public art -- starting with the Dubuffet (which rhymes with cassoulet -- don't pretend you didn't notice), past the Picasso and Miro, the scattering of street people, the shared the cigarettes, Chagall's Mosaic across from the Inland Steel building, on to Calder's Flamingo stabile at Mies' Federal Plaza and then to Millennium Park for a taste of Today -- but back to my point. Which belonged to the evening, which is resident in this fragment from Mary Oliver's Messenger:
let me keep my mind on what matters
which is my work
which is mostly standing still and learning to be
Or something very much like that.