College is easy. Write what you know, study what you don't, do the math.


I've got almost everything I need, materialistically, realistically, and many bonuses, too. I have a stack of quarters an inch and a half tall, but my money's no good here; the coke machine down the hall spits out three out of four quarters and gives me a twenty-five cent twenty ounce Coca-Cola product of my choice. Why does that make me feel empty?

He thrusts his fist against the post and still insists he sees the ghost.

If you walk down Mann Road at three in the morning, way out some ten minutes from Stateroad 67 where they grow beans and keep cows, and corn gathers in proletarian disorganization, one thousand ears whipsering in the wind, and you pray to some Dollar-strore idol that you'll see a demon like Carlos Castenada and not let go of your nagual, and you think you see them moving amid the beans and burrows, in the high grass too close to fence posts to mow, in the groves set up to stop the dust from blowing in the wind, in the hills that rise in front of some impossible secret, and you tell your best friend in the closest of confidence that everything hidden is theft, then when you walk back to his house, you will see a large barrel that will move on four bear legs as you near it, and when you get ready for the struggle, it will resolve itself into a cow jogging back across the road towards its enclosure which it's escaped.

It's more afraid of you than you are of it.

How does a cow escape? Cows aren't clever, nor are they ambitious. A neglegent rancher does not subsist, nor a farmer reap. Here I am thinking about that damned cow and how it jumped over the moon for us that night. Later we saw a dead tree, picked it up piecemeal and carried it, the three of us, each with a large, wicked looking rotten scepter of middle Indiana lumber that couldn't hack it. We carried it to my confidant's house and reerected it as a tripodal monument just in front of a bend in the long rock driveway where we park our cars. A week later, somebody responsible knocks it over to mow the grass. No animals were hurt during this process. Why does that depress me?

And you who stand above them now, your hatchets blunt and bloody, you were not there before.

I'm sitting in class today. A dozen or so people and the professor are discussing racial tension. Why are they spending thirty minutes on this? It's not even a discussion. No one's offering a contrary position. No one thinks that people should be treated like used shit. This is a support group for guilty-minded white people. I'm staring at my watch and thinking about the universe. I wonder if the cheese has gone bad yet. Cheese is all I have left.

Pretty soon there's not a creature stirring 'cept the robots at the dynamo

I want to fuck until I'm paralyzed, and then I want to live on a mountain in splendid isolation. I want to write a novel that will crush western civilization and answer the riddles of existence. I want to be naked and famous. In the room, the women come and go talking about Michaelangelo. Below me, beside me, and somewhere within there's a semi-rhythmic thumping even though everybody's left for Labor Day, and it's like I'm listening to the terror through the wall. I haven't read anything else today because I'm too wrapped up in myself and I wonder if anybody will read this. Why does that make me nervous?

You cannot stand what I've become
You much prefer the gentleman I was before
I was so easy to defeat
I was so easy to control
I didn't even know there was a war

I think I've made all my decisions. As long as we're making metaphors, then let us say that life is like a Swiss Army knife, and it's up to you to pull out the proper gadget at the proper time. When I say you, I mean me, and when I say me, I don't know what I mean. I guess I want attention, but I don't want you to know who I am. I want you to know who Leonard Cohen is, and who T. S. Eliot is, and I don't want you to hear my song, but the songs of The Zendick Orchestra and Warren Zevon. I don't always want a friend, a smile will do. Maybe we shouldn't swell a progress, but progress some swelling and see how scattered our clothes can get, and how nearly we can merge our structures. Talk to me, I have an open mind, but that doesn't make it a vacuum to be filled with the nearest possible mass. A nipponized bit of the old eighth avenue el is preferable to your damned philosophy; when you speak about children and politics and the world economy, I am on my mountain.

We sit together, the mountain and I, until only the mountain remains.