Note From Lightning Rod

Honoring Clay January (Lightning Rod) RIP 2/6/2013
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Lightning Rod
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Note From Lightning Rod

Post by Lightning Rod » August 23rd, 2011, 6:16 pm

To all of my S8 friends: I wanted to drop in and say a few words because I have not been my usual loquacious self lately. My sight makes it very hard for me to follow the community action because only with great effort can I see the gray text and font size, so I can't hear what everybody is saying. For some time now I have mainly just been posting some of my prose from time to time. Plus my other health troubles have kept me horizontal a good deal of time. But slowly I'm sure I will recover, and as I do, you are likely to see more of me.

Doreen stole my heart all over again by coming to Dallas to help with the benefit concert organized by Mr. Troll. The event moved me to tears, having so many of my old friends appear to show some skin for old Lrod. Doreen lit up my life by being there to show me that she loves me. I'm a complete child when it comes to my need to hear her remind me that she loves me. She did it in spades this weekend. Her love is the best elixir for what has been ailing me. Anyway, thank you Doreen for coming to my side to remind me of your love. And I would like to personally thank our own dear Veronica (Arcadia) for making her appearance possible. You are a true romantic, mi hermana.
And thanks to Jack for writing big for me and thanks to you all for sending your best wishes and occasionally your cash as I fight this battle to restore my health. Bless you all.

Below is the statement that was read at the concert by Joe Lemming and Annie Benjamin and distributed at the event in a flyer that Doreen designed (which I hope she posts)


(written on the event of the Save The Poet's Eyes Benefit Concert and Auction held for the purpose of obtaining the modern miracle of a cataract operation for Dallas poet, Lightning Rod. at Poor David's. The poet would like to thank David Card and Mr. Troll and the entire Poor David's crew for opening their hearts and their house to host this event and to all the many talented and generous artists who are donating their time and talent and just plain goodness to help make sure that The Poet's Eye will continue to see.)

I wanted to say these words to you. Long have I wanted to say these words to you but now I find my voice muted. I must depend on a friend to utter them. This is utterly fitting because what I wish to say concerns the matter of depending upon friends.

I always wanted to depend on myself. Some also call this the Sin of Pride. Hubris. But I wanted to depend upon myself and this is one reason that it was so difficult for me to learn this lesson, this lesson being that we need to be able to depend upon others. It's not as easy as it sounds, especially for a smart-alec like myself who thinks he can do everything for himself.

But god, being the prankster that he is, had a funnier joke in mind. Instead of just telling me that I would come closer to a state of grace if I accepted the help that the universe was constantly offering to me. No, God is more complicated than that. What He did was, He showed me. He didn't wanna just tell me, he had to SHOW me like he showed Job. He had to demonstrate to me just how weak and helpless and pitiful that I actually was. No matter how strong and bright and confident and independent that I imagined myself to be, I was really totally dependent on a set of exceedingly kind and cooperative circumstances which allowed me to exist. Not least of these were my friends, those people around me who already gave me everything and to whom I gave my all in return. To imagine that I alone was in control of my destiny was self-delusion at it's grandest and most deadly stage.

In order to illustrate these truths to the hard-headed poet, the Father of all Fates threw the biblical dance on me. He removed my blessings and advantages and thrust me into a position of total dependence and submission. He saw to it that I had to depend on other people for everything that made my life possible, my food, my shelter, my every contact with the world. He took possessions and He took positions and status, then freedom itself. Then the senses started to go along with the health in general. Finally, one day, I said, "OK, God, I get it." Of course I was just saying that to get him to quit but at the same time I DID get it. We are all utterly dependent. None of us stands on his own. The rich man and the poor man depend on each other. The ugly and the beautiful are equally needed, the healthy and the sick are both required. This is what I GOT and seeing this alwlays makes living SO much easier.

I would like to thank everyone who has come here today to show a little skin for old Lightning Rod. I hope those of you here are present showing your support because maybe, some time in the past, I have done something or said something or written something that has helped you in your life or just given you a grin or a giggle. That is the most any poet can hope, to touch his audience in some small way. The poet makes and uses symbols but the poet also is himself a symbol. If I've ever been a symbol to you, I hope it was a useful one. If I don't know you yet, I thank you for your support as well and promise to try and offer up in the future using what voice I have, these words, I promise to give you my honest thoughts and the best descriptions of our world as I can observe from a soon to be cleared Poet's Eye.

In thanking you all for your help in providing the miracle of sight for me, this poet would also ask you all to be mindful that this miracle should not need to be obtained with a special party or event such as this one. It should be automatically available to any of us because we have Universal Healthcare in our country. Please help me by speaking up for single payer national healthcare. I have spent a good deal of my life speaking up for you as a poet. Now I ask you to do something for me. I ask you to help one who has no voice to speak out for this cause which is just and right.....................UNIVERSAL HEALTH.

Lrod, Aug 21, 2011
"These words don't make me a poet, these Eyes make me a poet."

The Poet's Eye

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Re: Note From Lightning Rod

Post by SadLuckDame » August 23rd, 2011, 6:40 pm

This was such a wonderful mood changer-lifter and upper.
`Do you know, I was so angry, Kitty,' Alice went on...`when I saw all the mischief you had been doing, I was very nearly opening the window, and putting you out into the snow! And you'd have deserved it, you
little mischievous darling!
~Lewis Carroll

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Re: Note From Lightning Rod

Post by Arcadia » August 23rd, 2011, 6:44 pm

wow l-rod! you´ve talked here, amigo...!!!!!!! so moving & beautiful words... :D
& I agree with you: we are interdependent and if god exists he or she must be complicated...! :lol: big-big hugs to you & doreen!! & cool if I was a sort of freewill-biglove-littlemecenas, it felt good! :wink:

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Re: Note From Lightning Rod

Post by YABYUM » September 21st, 2011, 12:29 am

um. i have read this over. i read it over again. i look at each key, think of its meaning because of my friend. i speak soft because of my friend. i remember moments where i was i because of my friend. i hear his voice when i called because he answered because i was his friend. i am sorry my only knowledge of my friends pain is known to me now. i weep. i lie not in these key strokes. i weep. i wish i was there with my friend now.....

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Re: Note From Lightning Rod

Post by Doreen Peri » September 23rd, 2011, 1:39 pm


The benefit concert was wonderful. Troll Mallow (aka Mr. Troll) and Beth Isbell (see columnists below), organized the event. I was so happy I as able to attend and wouldn't have been able to do so had it not been for Arcadia's extremely generous donation to fund my plane ticket. It was fabulous to meet Troll and Beth and hear them both play!

Lightning Rod is a well-respected musician in Dallas. It's very obvious. Soooo many fine musicians came out to play all day long and all night, volunteering their time to perform at this event.

I remember fondly when you used to call here regularly when Clay lived here and we both so much loved your phone calls!

Please send your healing energy to Clay as he's still struggling and recovering. He's been through a lot!



Please write to me and let me know how you're doing and if there's any way I can help. I think about you all the time. Sending light and love and healing vibes your way. You're a tough strong man and you'll soon be stronger than ever sharing your essays, wisdom, poetry and music. I was so happy to be able to come and visit you. When I get a job and can afford it, I'll come back to visit again.

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Re: Note From Lightning Rod

Post by knip » October 16th, 2011, 2:21 am

keep her going there, jethro...and up to y'all, and arcadia's kindness

we all need more of that, and you folks

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