The Laursonian Institute

The Laursonian Institute

An exercise in thoroughness

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TTMMH 5: clouds

We don’t get a lot of atmospheric weather in Davis. Days like yesterday, when the sky lowers and the clouds come in, remind me of home. And that makes me happy.

TTMMH 4: tinkering

I like putting things together.  This includes both the making of new things via sewing, soldering, programming, etc., and the simple act of assembly as with furniture, computers, and the like.

TTMMH 3: baking

Baking combines two of the things I excel at: eating and following instructions.  Plus there’s some magic to making something out of nothing.

TTMMH 2: mentoring

I really enjoy teaching and mentoring younger students.  Passing on your knowledge is gratifying, and giving people opportunities they otherwise wouldn’t have had is quite fulfilling.  I’ll miss teaching at the college level, if this is my last year of it.

TTMMH 1: book browsing

Welcome to part one in my occasional series: things that makes me happy.

Two facts have recently come to my attention.

let me drown

Sound saturates my present. Fog on my windshield, damp, obscuring distinctions in my realities.

The bent howl of a note blurs my vision, eye turns inward, soul splits open like parched earth.

Frustrated and impotent. Your tide ebbs, my faded crust crumbles, is ground into common dirt. Stuff of the earth.


I remember reaching, the familiar pinch of swollen dreams straining against imagined walls.

I could feel it then, in my fingers, my throat tightening as the intangible realness of sound filled me. Leaden arms, dull with potential, tingling with unrealized action.

Real life isn’t this way. I grasp and find only the sticky sickness of fermented delusion. The putrid remains of untended wants. The maddening dullness of paper.

Paper. Of all things to build ones life on — bleached, obsolescing paper. Thousands of years of ideas, used and reused, marrow sucked out and body discarded.


All I ever wanted was to be part of something beautiful.

Capital City

Excuse me, have we met before?
I thought I heard you say
Those words
So near
I can almost recall what it was
Who it was we had in common

I’ve been here so long I’ve forgot
The place I had called home
The faces
And friends
I thought maybe you were one of them
Our parallel souls crossing paths

But I find myself here again
Always haunting doorways
I might open one and find myself
Just as I remembered I was

The same immutable contents
That soul-deafening reach
Both proud
And distant
Unlived life spilling ever over
Into my own sterile cup

Mobile Home

There is no quiet in my soul without camaraderie.

I move away, I move on; upward but always looking back. I think i can sustain myself on introductions, but it’s not true. I’m not sure it ever has been. I find approval in new places, impress those I can with the surface of my being and wall in what is myself so I can remember who I am. If not for the secret interior, the private past and coveted future, I am a passably friendly acquaintance and a paper trail.

My entire self quiets with my friends. My good friends. There are so few of these people in life it seems impossible that you could ever forget yourself. And then it happens. The need to entertain, impress, please, assuage is gone and only laughter and remembrance obtains. Stories you don’t even recall give continuity to the self: yes, that sounds like something I’d have done. There’s a me – an essence, an assemblage of tendencies – that has always been. And there are friends, to stand testament and to accept.

I cleave life like a wedge. Only will and fortitude move me forward. Yet the dull clang of progress fades in the company of known hearts. The rasping grind of metal on stone seems interminable, but now and again – a breath. And in that moment prevails the clarity of position, a knowledge of the permanence of life, the happiness of nothingness.

Future pick-me-up

Just in case I need this later:
“Written with a clarity you rarely see these days”

1 down.

solipsism amok

I am the pillar, not the light.

However much I thirst to shine, to beam knowledge and brilliance across the seas, I can never be the crystal.

I am the pillar.

Steadfast, stalwart, dependable, solid.  Never wavering, growing only upward, reaching for the heavens but bolted to the ground.

I am the pillar.

Immobile and unwavering, stubbornly convinced of the integrity of my base, the construction of my form.  Solid concrete, from heart to skin.  I cannot be moved, I cannot be swayed, I am and only am what I am.  Extant, immutable.

I am the pillar.

Filled only when others fill me.  Remorsefully purposeless without a carefully nurtured flame, propogated by others, a mere shell awaiting a use.

I am the pillar.

Beset by barnicles, moribund in fog.  Begat of good intentions, but so singly-purposed as to obsolesce into fallowness.  Bereft of purpose.

I am the pillar.

A monument to faith, quaintly atemporal, belying the naievity of woman who dreams but doubts.  An obelisk dedicated to frictionless momentum, future forged by the first forward push.

I am the pillar.

Let Alexandria burn and build again.