Wild Things to Do - Epilogue
Wild Things to Do - Epilogue
Copyright © 2009 Jon Seligman. All Rights Reserved.
Before I end off let me slip in a quick film review. Ari's contribution has been to copy the footage from Dena's old movie camera and from Issy's onto video. Ora's copy got taped over so I asked Ari to tape one for me. Yesterday I went to Ora's house and popped it in to the video machine. We don't have a TV. Although I got giddy staring at the unsteady hand held voiceless footage for over an hour, and lots of it has turned into blinding explosions of pure white light, this is what I saw. When you read this try imagine Bob Dylan whining a hard rains is gonna fall, I saw a highway of diamonds with no body on it,
I saw Ora looking so 3 year old and 30 at the same time.
I saw her looking just her age and hugging Joel and Danny and David.
I saw beautiful Dena sliding down a slope of snow in a sledge going very fast.
I saw Arthur holding all his kids looking into the camera proud and happy as shit.
(I hope you know what shit means here. Who are you and what's the time? Is it 2000 and something or 3000 and something? If you'd been around in the late 1900s and were just a tiny bit street or film wise you'd know BAD means good, and shit means good too.)
I saw Ora looking 15 with a boy looking not much older
I saw him holding her with windmills and cows and Ben and Ethel and Dena and Arthur and Chaya Musha and Phyllis and Benny in the background.
(This frame captures the stone age bagel stream and the wild things to do stream becoming one, becoming me.)
I saw an old Chosid and his wife and their son AZ sitting on a bench one of many at the top of a hill surrounded by their great grandchildren.
And I saw my mom and dad on their wedding day looking cooler and super beautiful and in love like you cant believe, they couldn't keep their hands and lips off of each other.
And I saw Joel and Vanetta in our garden with Debbie and Lisa and Abigail with an African man who must have been Phineas cleaning the pool in the background. It must have been the time Joel was duk into the Rivonia trial or right near the time before he got deported right deep in the darkest days of Apartheid. Come to think of it he looks a little less in role than some of the other fathers. Maybe he's thinking about Phineas and Mandela. I'm on Issys back who's now wearing glasses. Speaking of backgrounds there's an old grey Volvo which was Dena's which I managed to prang on my way to a soccer match. Made three mistakes smoked too many joints and stayed up too late the night before and put on my boots too early. When the car in front of me stopped my feet wouldn't stay on the brakes.
And I saw my darling sister Ruth with a pre page boy hair cut and I saw Barak looking so cute I had to shout out kawaai.
And I saw David and Joel and Danny learning to walk in front of piles of stones my mom calls a rockery.
And I saw Chaya Musha my namesake sticking close to Arthur and speaking in Yiddish to Yiska on the silent soundtrack
Oh a soft rain is gonna fa-ll
Its not gonna hail all the ti-me
This is a remarkable story for me. What were fragments if that and that had me dangling and sharded, and what was in that grey not even black and white not even sepia zone, is now my piece of the action bang in the middle of 14 generations.
In every generation I have touched on there is someone who broke new ground or who stood out or "visibly succeeded."
Ancestral talmudic sages behind
whose names and surprises will come with only a little digging
Chief Cantor of Leipzig
And his Oxford mansion
What he did for Mandela
Someone said time is like swimming through liquid but all that passes into history turns and freezes to granite. Nothing could be further from the truth. It is all fluid. You can swim and melt yourself and your under-standing up stream and down stream any time you like. Skate in any direction making roads no one has ever dreamed or sign posted. The swim up stream as all swims upstream are has been at times thrilling and at times hard work.
There is a saying that by sounding and tuning in to (exactly) and humming the mystic law, you can influence 7 generations back and 7 forward. From here I can see further back than forward. 7 back is Joseph and the cow and the herring.
I've gone as far as I can for now - I stop paddling against the stream, I tread water for a moment, then I turn around, flip onto my back, block out the glare with one hand, feel the warm and cold currents on my legs, point the balls of my feet at the future, float for a bit, dive to the bottom, do a bit of crawl, then butterfly, then breast and back stroke, float some more, tack from one bank to the other.
Remember the past is not history, water all your roots, and only dead fish go with the flow.
Jonathan Misha Morgan