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Daniel Day-Lewis spoke with poet, Eileen Myles in this 2002 interview. Photography by Terry Richardson.
 

Read Bjork's2001 interview with Juergen Teller from the index archives.



Kathleen Hanna discusses writing and making music in this interview from 2000 with Laurie Weeks.


Isabella Rossellini spoke with Peter Halley in this 1999 interview.


Check out our interview with Crispin Glover by Richard Kern from 2000.
Alexander McQueen's 2003 interview with Bjork.
 
  JERRY HALL
STEPHANIE SEYMORE
MARC JACOBS
  ASIA ARGENTO
DENNIS HOPPER
ABEL FERRARA
BRIAN WILSON
WILL OLDHAM
DJ SPOOKY

Genesis P-Orridge, 1999

WITH STEVEN SPROTT AND VERONICA VASICKA
PHOTOGRAPHED BY VERONICA VASICKA


Though much of his career has been centered on recordings and concerts, music seems tangential to Genesis P-Orridge’s mission.  For more than twenty-five years, he has asked us to reconsider what exactly makes our modern life any more civilized than what came before.  And despite having been listed as one of England’s “undesirables,” his work, in all its varied manifestations, has consistently proposed a more dignified way of living.
In 1975, after several years of touring with a performance art group called Coum Transmissions — who made their final appearance in the riotous “Prostitution” show at London’s ICA — Genesis and his co-conspirators reconvened in their East End studio to establish the band Throbbing Gristle.  And so began a five year intervention into popular music.  While most of the punk bands around them were shouting over stripped-down one-chord rock and roll, TG responded to post-industrial England with nothing less than industrial music.
In the company of Peter “Sleazy” Christopherson, Chris Carter, and Cosey Fanni Tutti, Genesis and TG produced some of the the most caustic, terrifying noise ever performed or committed to record.  But behind their wall of sound was an honest, persistent inquiry into how we might recover our emotional well-being in a world of tawdry murders and daily doldrums.  Even so, the press preferred to cast them as “the wreckers of civilization” — a line the group happily ran in all their subsequent ads.
Then came Psychic TV, a decade-long project which, half-way through, discovered the wonders of dance music and proto-rave happenings, replete with swirling frequencies and sampled vocals.  With the release of Origin of the Species this past November, the first in a series of Psychic TV compilations, as well as a new book on TG due this spring, history seems to be chasing at Genesis’s coattails.  But the Genesis we recently sat down with is looking — as always — forward.  His new group is called Thee Majesty, and, in his words, their intention is to connect “with the majesty of something beyond ourselves ... something divine.”

Stephen Sprott:  You’ve always been a good source of trouble.  What was one of the earliest pranks you pulled?
Genesis P-Orridge:  I think when I was about your age, I was going around Hackney and putting up all these little stickers, “Nothing Short of a Total War.”  I’d stick them up and gradually hear back that right-wing people were assuming it was communists, and the Socialist Worker Party assumed that it was the National Front.  Other people were just baffled.  Some people thought it was fundamental Christians saying Armageddon is nigh.  There was no specified ending or intent, so I was fascinated to see how people interpreted them based on prejudice or the hologram of their experience so far.

Veronica Vasicka:  Sounds like a fun game to play.
GP-O:  They’re all small and cheap games.  Anyone can join in with a completely contrary reason and affect some kind of moment of perception.  I think the only definition of art or creativity anyone’s ever come up with is taking something that we’re used to and somehow getting other people, even for a split second, to see it differently.  I’ve never come across a better explanation than that.  Therefore all you’re looking for are tools.

SS:  Something to make you slip.
GP-O:  Yeah, we do become lazy visually to what’s around us.  But you can flip your own perception very quickly once you start exercising.  I think that’s what I’ve always done — is to wake up each morning and kick a habit no matter what it might be, no matter how simple.  In fact, I often keep a notebook to write the order I did everything the day before just so, at the very least, I do it in a different order, as a matter of principle.  One has an internal software and it needs to be shifted constantly no matter how much you’ve done and how long you’ve done it.

SS:  Too often you see the clock and then know what to do.  It’s hard to eat just when you’re hungry and drink when you’re thirsty.
GP-O:  Well that’s probably more true for people who have some kind of a formal employment situation.  I haven’t had one since I left home in 1968.  So for me, it’s more of a natural blur anyway.  In a perfect world, I’d probably just wake up in the late afternoon and work all the way through the night and go to sleep when I get really tired.  Most people I know, given half a chance tend to do that.

SS:  And that’s because everybody else is asleep, right?
GP-O:  That seems to be the only explanation anyone I know can come up with!  When I was in Transmedia Exploration, we used to call them the Centroclines, which is the negative energy and is the opposite of quaquaversal — pointing in every direction simultaneously.  Our aspiration was to become quaquaversal beings.  Not to have one skill but to be fluid and flexible for the infinite number of possibilities that might happen on a given day.  So we used to say it was the centroclinal energy at night that declined, making more space for the quaquaversal.  It was partly a joke and partly a reminder.

SS:  You know how lion tamers walk around with chairs?  I always thought that was so you’d see them from the stands but they really use them to distract the lions.  Lions don’t know what to do with four points so they jam up and don’t do anything.
GP-O:  Oh, that’s interesting.  So their eyes keep moving to each point. [laughs]  Is that what you want?  A one-point limit?

SS:  No, it’s just nice to think of flexibility as a skill.  That reminds me of Raoul Vaneigem who more or less ran away from the Situationists.  He said, “You guys are such silly old farts!  Get past your disappointment.  Don’t be upset with officials, try self-management.  Try pleasure and self-indulgence.”
GP-O:  I think I could go for disciplined self-indulgence as one aspect of resolving an individual’s problem of how to live and how to beget creatively.  That’s where the individual or the abberant vision is usually first noticed — because of that passion.  It usually goes against the grain, even of the so-called movement they’re meant to be part of.  And they’re often the ones that first get villified by the founding fathers.  Dali got villified by the Surrealists.

SS:  A movement can end up being about constraints.
GP-O:  There again, it produces an almost paramilitary view of culture and I just can’t feel comfortable with any paramilitary view unless it’s a really good satire.  What can I say, I sound terrible.

SS:  How did the Coum actions work in public, did other people get involved or did they just risk getting hit by stuff?
GP-O:  At the very beginning, there was still an element of street theatre and audience participation.  There would be an aural assault with people running into the audience and we would lose track of the boundaries.  But our interest quickly moved into character archetypes.  We had a room called the Costume Room and each costume was a character that you would take on when you wore it.  So every week on Saturday morning, everyone that wanted to participate would turn up at the house.

SS:  Were these historical costumes?
GP-O:  No, there was “Harriet Straightlace” who was asexual, prim and proper in a really bigoted way and always a little upset and neurotic about everything.  And there was the “Alien Brain,” who looked like a homeless person but with an alien brain made out of bits of transistor radios.  Alien Brain was baffled by everything in the world as if they’d just arrived.  And there was a clown, of course.  So people would pick a costume and whatever they were doing, they would be that character for two days.  It was an incredible psychodrama — the discipline involved in switching characters and then going out shopping, all together!

VV:  Were you thinking of this as an art project?
GP-O:  It was becoming like one and we realized that if we started taking beautiful photographs of the art actions, which were becoming more and more erotic, dealing with sexual taboos and so on, that it could easily have been our formula.  As long as we were well behaved, we could see the unfolding of how it could be done.  So why do it if you can see every possibility?  The element of mystery is lost.  And the real reason to do it is to find out something you didn’t expect and then decide how to alter both what you do and how you live.

VV:  So you were interested in making people lose their expectations?
GP-O:  Well, one of the reasons that we moved away from performance art was a conversation in a pub with somebody at the height of the big ICA “Prostitution” show scandal.  This ordinary guy said, “Yes, that’s fine but would you be able to walk into an East End pub and explain that and have them comprehend what you’re doing?  You should look for a platform that’s already popular culture and then mutate that.”  And that’s what made me go away and focus on Throbbing Gristle.

VV:  Yeh!
GP-O:  Let’s do a band!  It was this whole other ready-made vehicle with all of its extraneous variations — again, posters along the streets, all sorts of graphics justified because it’s for a gig.  But let’s not be an obviously intellectual art band.  Let’s say that we’re a rock ‘n’ roll band but apply all the knowledge we’ve gained from the art world in terms of how to construct and assemble things to convey unexpected content while making it appear authentic and convincing.

VV:  And it made people sick!
GP-O:  Oh, we did all kinds of things.  We spent a whole year building our own equipment.  We thought, what is it that rock bands have in common?  Drummers.  So we thought, let’s not have a drummer.  What else do we have in common?  They can play their instruments to some degree or another.  So let’s not learn.  Let’s only touch things we definitely can’t play.  And we worked from the most perverse direction we could, to contradict everything that would be the appropriate manner of achieving any form of success or recognition.
     A classic example of how it would work:  We were invited to play the graduation party for all these students at the Architectural Association in London.  I went down first to check out what the building was like and discovered a courtyard which could only be reached by small doors in the basement.  So we said that we’d like to play in there, not in the theatre, not in the refectory or anything like that.  And then I came up with the idea of building a great big box and playing inside this box.  So we built it out of scaffolding and covered the top in plywood and then put tarpaulins over it so it looked like a pile of books or wood had been stored in the yard.  On the evening we performed, we had closed-circuit video cameras inside — I had noticed that all the way through the building, they had these black and white TV monitors.

SS:  TG monitors!
GP-O:  [laughs] And all the PA speakers that we’d brought were facing straight upwards on the floor around the box, instead of pointing outwards.  It was five or six floors to the sky.  We locked the door to the courtyard once we got inside, so if you wanted to see us, you had to watch the TV monitors scattered around this building but there was no sound feed.  So all you could do was see that there were four people doing something inside this structure.  To hear it, you had to go out onto the roof and look down, but then you couldn’t see what was happening.  It created literally a riot.  People smashed toilets and hurled them at us.  I’m glad we built it strong!  I never guessed that people would be that angry about not being allowed to watch us play.

SS:  They dropped toilets off the roof?
GP-O:  They threw toilets, they threw bricks.  They smashed the doors into the courtyard in the end and went crazy.  It got really, really violent.  And all they could say was that they demanded the right to be allowed to watch us play.

SS:  I’ve never heard of architects rioting.  That must have been their first time.
GP-O:  It surprised me.  I thought we were just being difficult and witty.  I hadn’t guessed that it would make people angry.  I expected “boring bastards” more than any other response.  But it became incredibly emotional for people.  They were adamant that we had no right to do that ...  This was in the earlier years when we were still trying to understand what the dynamic was.  We only played thirty times in the whole six years.  And many of those were right at the very end.  So at the beginning, each one was very specifically difficult and perverse.

VV:  What happened at your first show?
GP-O:  The very first one we ever did was in an art gallery in an old factory building.  The walls were really thick concrete.  We set up and played in one room and closed this big, thick door.  And anyone who wanted to come and listen was in the other room where there was an art exhibition we had set up which was suggesting that the criminal mind was similar to the truly creative mind.  That caused some upset too.  Again, “Why aren’t we allowed to go in and watch?”  To this day I don’t fully comprehend why you have to watch it done before you can get pleasure.  Because people don’t watch it done on TV.  Everything that they’re watching isn’t real anyway.  Most of the bands that you go and watch are being aided and abetted by technology.  The bigger the band, the less they really play. [laughs]

SS:  Even though you had so much technology onstage, which was unusual for that time, you can really hear how that technology was being perverted.  It was not being used properly.
GP-O:  As intended.  Chris Carter and Peter Christopherson rebuilt and rewired most of it anyway.
VV:  What were the instruments?
GP-O:  Theoretically? [laughs]  I had a bass guitar and an electric signal generator.  Cosey Fanni Tutti had a guitar from Woolworths — the cheapest you could buy.  We sawed off the two bits of wood that didn’t do anything and put new distorting pick-ups on it because it didn’t make enough noise.  Chris originally used a synthesizer he built himself.  And later on he started using a Roland but many of the effects were home-made too.  He also had a TV receiver that we could just switch through so that bits of television would come out mixed in with the music.  We liked the idea that people would just assume it was a tape recording until they got home and discovered that that particular event had happened while they were at the gig and wondered how the hell they heard it.

SS:  Subcurrent events.
GP-O:  Later on, we went into making everything as small and portable as possible.  We realized that there was a certain machismo to having a lot of equipment.  Our idea of the ultimate gig was that you could arrive and set up and be ready to play in five minutes.  That was what the great liberator of modern technology should be for a band.  So we designed our own flight cases.  Mine was slightly bigger because I needed a bigger amp for my bass.  And I had a Gristlizer and a soundwave generator and a couple of other little gadgets.  Sleazy’s was even smaller than Chris’ ’cause it was just eight Walkmans in this little box.  He built his own keyboard, put cassettes into the Walkmans, and when he hit the keys, whatever was on the cassette would be what came out.  It was a true random cut-up happening.  We could set everything up in three minutes.  We could go on a plane and not even pay for excess baggage — just a small bag for clothes and a box and that was it.

SS:  A small box of gristle.
GP-O:  I still think of that as the ultimate modernity in terms of being a band.  I can’t understand why people want to spend four hours messing around with arcane and ridiculous equipment.

SS:  Well, it’s not just the size of the set up, it’s also about having full control of all the gadgets — running around the stage making whole banks of speakers submit to you.
GP-O:  One has to admit that volume in and of itself can be very exciting and running around in front of it and knowing you’re making the noise can be a certain physical thrill.  I found it so beautiful that, for instance, when we made “Discipline” in Berlin, it was in a nice long building with an undecorated stage at one end.  And when you walked in, you just saw four people standing in a grey, white light wearing grey uniforms and four boxes with a couple wires coming out.  It was incredibly sculptural and modern.  And yet those wires went to the PA which made it loud.  We told the mixer to put it up to full and walk away, “You’ve got nothing to do tonight.”  The simplicity I think was so radical and effective because suddenly people are left with nothing to appraise or consider except the experience itself.

VV:  Was this the first performance of “Discipline”?
GP-O:  Oh yeah.  What happened often with TG would be that before we went on, I’d usually ask Sleazy, “What do you want me to sing about tonight?”  And in Berlin he said “Discipline” as we walked on stage.

SS:  Berlicipline.
GP-O:  We made it up on stage.  The same with “Persuasion” and “Convincing People.”  I would say 90% of our recorded songs were invented on stage in reaction to the rhythms and the sounds and the guitars which were coming through mangled.  So it’s very much of a mediumistic type of experience, which is quite rare in rock music.  It’s something that I’m still interested in and still do.  I prefer to walk on to the stage with only a microphone and try and sense the site’s specific atmosphere and allow that to speak through and with me.  And I’ll have some themes that have been obsessing me personally that week, that day.
     People assume that it’s much more planned than it really is.  Psychic TV stopped rehearsing in 1983 because we were so concerned with knowing too much about what might happen next.  For me the joy of creativity is the adventure that’s embarked upon jointly with the audience.  This could be inspired.  It could be mundane.  It could be dismally disappointing but that’s why we’re all here because it might be divine.  And isn’t it worth the risk involved to just hope that might happen?

SS:  What excites me about TG music is that it’s not just a conduit for the psyches involved and whatever your particular obsessions were that might or might not come out.  It was also a conduit for the machines themselves.  You had a sensitivity to them and let them turn in on themselves.  You weren’t just making music but you had to listen to the equipment at the same time.
GP-O:  That’s absolutely true.  They were machines in revolt.  In a way, we deprogrammed the machines from the original intent of the designer.  That is one thing that’s always worried me about computers, software, musical technology.  Someone built it to some kind of limitations and specifications.  It has to be innately limited by their imagination, their desires, their financial or intellectual constraints.  Therefore you are vulnerable to that other person’s limitations.  So we wanted to experiment on our own with the equipment and often would just leave it playing itself ...

SS:  ... in the studio?
GP-O:  Sometimes for two or three days.  And it would start to do things that we could never have guessed.  I would be typing letters and suddenly my little ear would perk up and I would think, “Wow, that’s a fabulous noise.”  And I’d tape ten minutes on a small tape recorder and we would improvise from that one note.  That would become a background bed of something completely new that we could never have done.  You have to deprogram your equipment as much as you can in order to give it an individual creative life of its own.

SS:  So you’re acting as a sort of medium.
GP-O:  I’ve always assumed that if I’m feeling drawn in a direction, it’s not because I have anything special to offer.  I assume it means other people are feeling exactly the same way.  My job is merely to recognize and express the inevitable — and with that same old tried and tested technique — just go out and see what happens.  Performance should always be about the closest one can get to absolute vulnerability.  It should be intimate and you should be, for all intents and purposes, emotionally and intellectually naked.

SS:  And this is what you’re doing with Thee Majesty?
GP-O:  Well, I’d already done two or three spoken word CDs and I’d always done things like that.  Bachir Attar — he’s been staying with us a lot — is a Master Musician of Jajouka.  Since we first met in 1981, we thought we should do something together and so far all that had happened was that he played with Psychic TV.  But over the last two years, I’ve wanted to work with him on the true concept of the vocalist, which is the storyteller — the recorder of thoughts, of people’s dreams, the psychotherapist of the group consciousness.
     My people, my tribe is a disaffected, Western, post-industrial, post-digital, unspecific group of people.  [laughs]  But they’re still my people so I try and be, on a good day, the voice to something that’s a common experience.  I don’t want any protective baffles anymore.  A rock band is a protective baffle.  You can hide behind the volume alone and get away with being less than inspired.  I decided that it was important for people to start literally demonstrating their vulnerabilities and weaknesses and fears.  And Bachir understood straight away.  His music is a five thousand year old mystical, Islamic trance music — which is supposed to heal insanity interestingly enough.  People visit this village on a weekly basis because it’s believed that this music literally heals madness.

VV:  Did you come up with the name for the group?
GP-O:  Larry Thrasher suggested the name, “Her Majesty,” which would be more satirical, more of the old game.  It kind of floated around but none of us felt it was quite right.  It was Miss Jackie that said it should be “Thee Majesty.”  The moment she said that, everyone just knew that was what we’d been missing, that word.  Really, all these years, all we really wanted was to find a connection with the majesty of something beyond ourselves, something bigger than contemporary culture, something so incredible that it’s all that’s left to look forward to.

SS:  And you’re going to play in England?
GP-O:  At the Royal Festival Hall on the first of May.  We’ll be doing an event called “Time’s Up” with the full ensemble of the Master Musicians of Jajouka and Thee Majesty, and for that one night only, the original Psychic TV, with Alex Fergusson.  And those will all segue into each other.  At the very end, we imagine a finale with everyone playing together and basically just saying that it’s the direction that really matters and not the form and not the personnel, simply the direction — which is upwards.

SS:  That’s really generous of you to do a performance like that after they kicked you out of the country!
GP-O:  [laughs]  Oh, it all makes sense.  I want to strip away any camouflage and do that which I love the most, which is to have an interaction with words themselves for those who choose to listen.  And Bachir wanted to do something different — an experiment with special effects on his Moroccan instruments.  And Bryin Dall’s always been fascinated by the rigors of improvising around other people.  He wants to play the minimum amount in order to be effective, which is very unusual for a guitarist.  Mustafa Attar, who is a Moroccan drummer, conceives of rhythm as trance.  Larry is also a classically trained tabla player.  So we realize that we have Asia, we have Africa and we have the West, coming together with the intent of trying to express, literally Thee Majesty, that which is beyond our comprehension.

SS:  And all this for Her Majesty.  But I thought you weren’t allowed back in England — that once you’d been “shown the door,” you couldn’t return.
GP-O:  Well, it was never really clear.  I think I was an “Enemy of the State.” [laughs]  “Cultural Assassin,” I don’t know.  I don’t think it’s important at this stage.  It seems so long ago.  Like many things that happen that seem negative, now it seems like a blessing.  I wouldn’t know all the people I know now; I wouldn’t have learned the things that I’ve learned.  So you let go.  Thee Majesty isn’t critical of the idea of England or any of that.  It’s to represent something divine.  And also, I don’t want to be gratuitously mischievous and contentious anymore.  I want to be as near as possible to the truth of what we’re feeling.

SS:  It becomes a waste of time to think of surviving or trying to beat them and then be distracted by those conflicts.
GP-O:  Exactly.  We don’t know just how it will sound but we know why it’s going to sound like it does.  Our job is to let it find its own way.  Before we were trying to create dissonance with the established earthly culture, but now we’ve realized that all we want is some form of metaphysical experience and bliss and joy.  And, guess what, I’ve got a suspicion that all that means is that we are absolutely and utterly commonplace and a lot of other people are feeling like that!  If we can merely make it okay to say so and not feel embarrassed and be ridiculed, then fabulous.  That’s what we need to be doing.  It’s nice, not having to deal with all that other stuff — the corruption and confusion.

SS:  I read in an early interview of yours that one goal to have was to make sure not to contribute to the shit.  The one action left was to make sure you’re not involving yourself with the bad things.
GP-O:  I haven’t learned to do that yet.  I still make terrible mistakes.  But you’re right.  There are so many behavioral loops, emotional roots, buried traumas, nervous system imprints — some genetic, some experiential — and who knows what else that trip you up with the best intent.  That can be very depressing.  I would still agree with that.  Don’t add to the shit, look for the divine.  Maybe the divine will pull us up by our bootstraps to somewhere above the shit. [laughs]  I hope so!  I’m tired of it.

SS:  I was surprised to learn that you’ve been writing these days.  You’ve always gotten so much out of collaborations, out of competing minds.
GP-O:  Well who’s to say that I don’t have lots of voices going on in my crazy head?  I wake up with entire scenarios for the book and sometimes I’m rather disturbed to wonder who it was that told me that story. [laughs]  So you are collaborating with other people and you’re only distilling the collaboration afterwards with your voice.

SS:  And this book is a kind of satire?
GP-O:  Satire, psychedelic memories, a compilation of dreams, reminiscences, distorted childhood experiences ...  Real people disguised as exaggerated characters in order to protect me. [laughs]  And quotes, funny little one-line quotes.  It’s not me.  I don’t think anyone is a unique person actually.

SS:  That’s not the important part anyway.
GP-O:  Nor should they kid themselves that that’s what they are.  Because that way lies dull.  Hence the formularized art we get.  Too many of them probably think that it’s unique, special and a work of genius.  Instead of thinking, wow, I’m just really fortunate that I get to do this on behalf of everyone else ...  Still, I’m very proud of what we did.  I think one of Throbbing Gristle’s achievements was that we pretty much did away with any self-imposed restraint on subject matter.  And I think the residue of that is still around.  We were dealing with whatever subjects we thought were important to human beings and to the way the human species viewed itself.  Because the only way to become healthy is to recognize that you have a problem.

SS:  You know, I don’t think I ever crave a Throbbing Gristle song in particular.  I just like to put it on to feel that mood — it’s medicinal — to hear in the background, “Do as you feel!  Don’t do as you’re told!”
G-PO:  I think that’s also a good reason to stop projects — when one becomes self-conscious.  I can remember really vividly, in Los Angeles, the one before the last gig of Throbbing Gristle, having played at the Veteran’s Auditorium.  Black Flag was supporting us as well as 45 Grave, who were the left-overs from the Germs.  I looked at this massive audience and they knew who we were.  They were there to see Throbbing Gristle.  And we had done gigs not that long ago for thirty people.  I think it was Cosey that said, “Oh shit, it’s like Ted Nugent.”

SS:  That’s when to stop.
GP-O:  And everyone felt inhibited and confused by that and knew that something was over.  So we stopped.  Too paranoid.  And I’m glad that we knew when to stop.  It was one of the best decisions we made.  We really left it intact.

SS:  Obviously what you like to listen to has changed a lot over the years.
GP-O:  It has and it hasn’t.  I really just listen to what I used to listen to when I was 15 or 16 — The Zombies, Dr. Strangely Strange, The Incredible String Band, Nick Drake, a lot of obscure psychedelic bands.  I like primarily English psychedelic music recorded between 1965 and ’69 and that’s about it.  I bet you could look through my CD collection as it is right now and there’d be nothing else outside those parameters.

SS:  You’ve got psychedelic through hyperdelic.
GP-O:  I sometimes worry that it’s so specific and it seems such a classic thing to do — to listen to your teenage music forever.

VV:  That’s what I do!
GP-O:  In between I’ve listened to all kinds of stuff.  But I’m still amazed at the scope of what was recorded in that small period of time and constantly amazed when discovering some arcane recording that gives me great pleasure or surprises me with the simplicity and depth simultaneously of a three-minute song.  On the other hand, The Incredible String Band would write a sixteen-minute song but dealing with metaphysics and myths and legends.

VV:  We’ve barely talked about Psychic TV.
GP-O:  Oh, that’s such a long story.  It was very complicated.  I think in retrospect, it had too many different manifestations but it did a lot of really good research.  I think it was a necessary process to go through in order to escape being forever one thing.

SS:  My favorite song is “Smile” from the Towards Thee Infinite Beat record.
GP-O:  Oh, I love that song.  I’m really happy with it.

SS:  And it comes from having daughters ...
GP-O:  Well, Genesse specifically.  But all good songs are about more than one thing and that one is also about looking in the eyes of a new being and having to confront one’s own corruption through having been alive longer.  The first thing they’re seeing is you and they assume that you are good because you will enable them to survive.  The melancholy and the sense of shame along with the incredible joy of the moment of seeing the untouched.  That’s what it’s really about.

SS:  Is there any place that you can imagine spending the rest of your years?
GP-O:  Just in the last week or so, Jackie and I were trying to figure out where that could be.  We can’t think of anywhere yet.  I know we’d like to travel.  And I can only hope that the same process of the inevitable will occur.  Maybe you’re not meant to be in one location.  There’s a part of me that believes a nomadic life of some kind is necessary to maintaining one’s self in a state of readiness for cultural activity.

SS:  Nice one.
GP-O:  That’s about all I can tell you.

 


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