john-j

Bang!

the heart,
divine,
spirits dancing in line,
elope, one night,
put the town out of scope on my bike,
you laugh, just right,
escapism real as a bite,
no, no, Mrs. Wright,
don’t tell em you’re the governor’s wife

oh they come lookin’,
the book learned try to book me,
oh they come lookin’,
the free will of the woman

the heart,
divine,
spirits dancing in line,
your soul, afire,
running from the funeral pyre,
the sand, cold feet,
our chest to chest drum beat,
the bold, the fleet,
scouring a scent too sweet

oh they come lookin’,
the book learned try to book me,
oh they come lookin’,
the free will of the woman

the heart,
divine,
spirits dancing in line,
the cost, of free,
running out of there with me,
daddy’s shotgun, the bang,
the county sheriff’s sirens sang,
the moonlight, sustained,
holding hands unrestrained


2016 Josh Gaydos
Pardy Prompt “BANG!”

actually started as a songwriter so this took 10 minutes,
this is a little Grateful Dead and Father John Misty inspired

It’s hard to explain to someone who isn’t wholly a bibliophile that yes, I buy books because they have beautiful covers and incredible stories and worlds and characters that I love to get lost in and even seeing their spines and titles on my shelves brings back the exact moment I read a scene that made me laugh so hard I cried or when I was so lost in another place, in someone else, that I didn’t realize it was three in the morning until I’d read the last line and it was completely worth the loss of sleep to spend every second inside the words printed on those pages nestled snugly on my bookshelf so I can return to that moment anytime I so wish. 

9

John: J
Photography: R
Costume design: blackoutballad

Some more photos from the other day! Everyone we asked about taking photos in the library and at the observatory was super helpful! It was funny getting stares from all the tourists in LA though. R and I joked about whether or not they thought this was normal American clothing…

Did these people [in academia who claim that they are not exposed to disabled people] realize that when they encountered the work of Rosa Luxemburg (who limped), Antonio Gramsci (a crippled, dwarfed hunchback), John Milton (blind), Alexander Pope (dwarfed hunchback), George Gordon Brown (club foot), [Jorge] Luis Borges, James Joyce, and James Thurber (all blind), Harriet Martineau (deaf), Toulouse-Lautrec (spinal deformity), Frida Kahlo (osteomyelitis), Virginia Woolf (lupus), they were meeting people with disabilities? Do filmgoers realize when they watch the films of James Ford, Raoul Walsh, André de Toth, Nicholas Ray, Tay Garnett and William Wyler that these directors were all physically impaired? Why is it when one looks these figures in dictionaries of biography or encyclopedias that their physical disabilities are usually not mentioned – unless the disability is seen as related to creativity, as in the case of the blind bard Milton or the deaf Beethoven? There is an ableist notion at work here that anyone who creates a canonical work must be physically able. Likewise, why do we not know that Helen Keller was a socialist, a member of the Wobblies, the International Workers of the World, and an advocate of free love? We assume that our ‘official’ mascots of disability are nothing else but their disability.
—  Lennard J. Davis, Enforcing Normalcy: Disability, Deafness, and the Body
J. Cole Receives Diploma at St. John's Concert: "I'm Gonna Send it to My Mom"

But the craziest part of the night was something the crowd didn’t see. Several faculty members that knew the rapper (then Jermaine Cole) stopped by the ad hoc green room to congratulate him, and one in particular brought with her a fitting gift. Dr. Julia Upton — former Provost and the professor of Cole’s “Discover New York” class (a required course for incoming freshmen) — bestowed him with his official college diploma. Majoring in communications and minoring in business, Cole graduated Summa cum laude in 2007 (with a G.P.A. of 3.82) but he never received his sheepskin because of a missing library book.
“I owed money for a library book that I didn’t turn in,” he admitted sheepishly. He has “no clue” what title it was but apparently even one vanishing book cost him his degree. “If you have any outstanding fee, that translates to money. There’s a price associated with it. I never paid. That’s why I don’t have my degree.”
Luckily, the school waived the fee for its star pupil. “Tonight, I guess they let me slide,” he laughed. Nearly a decade after the fact, Cole already knows exactly what he’s going to do with his long-awaited piece of paper. “I’m gonna send it to my Mom.”

Click here to read the full interview.