Notebook


John Cage to Elizabeth Bishop

5th August

Did John Cage read Elizabeth Bishop’s poem “Letter to N.Y.”:

In your next letter I wish you’d say
where you are going and what you are doing;

I ask because Cage delivered a “lecture” at Pratt in 1961 titled, “Where Are We Going? And What Are We Doing?” A lecture that was actually four in one. A performance of “Where Are We Going? And What Are We Doing?”┬áconsists of three pre-recorded tracks played simultaneously while the same speaker reads a fourth script. For his collection of essays┬áSilence, Cage printed the four lectures in different typefaces, mixed together incoherently. In a brief introduction, Cage qualifies the print copy:

The texts were written to be heard as four simultaneous lectures. But to print four lines of type simultaneously–that is, superimposed on one another-was a project unattractive in the present instance. The presentation here used has the …


My Maria

2nd August

He straightened and with his two arms around her held her so tightly that she was lifted off the ground, tight against him, and he felt her trembling and then her lips were on his throat, and then he put her down and said, “Maria, oh, my Maria.”


Heartland Rock and John Cage

1st August

Trailing the musical history of Tastee-Freez. Trisha Yearwood’s “She’s In Love With The Boy,” a story about Katie and Tommy, reworks John Mellencamp’s “Jack and Diane.”

Katie and Tommy at the drive-in movie
Parked in the very last row
They’re too busy holdin’ on to one another
To even care about the show
Later on outside the Tastee-Freez
Tommy slips something on her hand
He says my high school ring will have to do
‘Til I can buy a wedding band.

versus

Suckin’ on chili dog outside the Tastee-Freez
Diane’s sittin’ on Jacky’s lap
He’s got his hand between her knees
Jacky say “Hey Diane lets run off
‘Hind a shady tree
Dribble off those Bobby Brooks
Let me do what I please.”

John Cage, “Indeterminacy”:

Virgil Thomson and Maurice Grosser were driving across the United States. When they came to Kansas, Virgil Thomson said, “Drive as fast as possible, in no case stop. Keep on going until …



From the Notebook
John Cage to Elizabeth Bishop

Did John Cage read Elizabeth Bishop’s poem “Letter to N.Y.”:

In your next letter I wish you’d say where you are going and what you are...

My Maria

He straightened and with his two arms around her held her so tightly that she was lifted off the ground, tight against him, and...

Heartland Rock and John Cage

Trailing the musical history of Tastee-Freez. Trisha Yearwood’s “She’s In Love With The Boy,” a story about Katie and Tommy, reworks John Mellencamp’s “Jack...