american angel notes from amsterdam – 15

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friday september 29, 2006 10:59

the process of learning to be an angel is the process of learning to be human.

some ideas;

the end. cassiel takes a final note “i wonder do i want to know what no angel knows”. and then i go to put my notebook in my breast pocket like usual and it falls to the floor.

a) i don’t notice it and walk away a few (or many steps) and then turn and look at it.

b) notice it immediately and audience wonders whether or not i will pick it up.

this is dependent on establishing these notebooks. establishing that damiel clearly gets rid of his to become human.

after the suicide. “time to go.” silence. “but why”. dead silence. stillness. slowly begin to say “no” and let it build to a scream.

“do you remember how, one day, they made a path here, down which later napoleon. . .”

the significance of grass. “the original history of grass”. express that in “which was later paved and which is now covered in grass and sunken like the course of a roman road.” connect roman road to homers speech about “the passes”, “the roman passes”

much learned in yesterday’s rehearsal. i pray i retain what matters.

taking my notebook our to check on homer’s memory of postdamer platz. reminding her of the name of the cafe she can’t remember. “josti”. the strong walk to homer when she feels like an organ grinder. the noting of the not obvious. jesse drinking from a red thermos.

everything is so new. so many different ideas for each moment and we’ve tried so many different versions.

it is extremely difficult to have a memory of the “good take”. of what we are keeping.

this will come, though. i trust.

what shows up will be what shows up. we will remember what we remember. it is a chipping away at all the stuff that doesn’t matter. a sculpting away from the thick slab of stone all that is not the shape of our wings of desire. this is the way to work. it is extremely difficult. the commitment to losing sight of the shore in order to discover new lands.

this is ola’s style. it can drive a seaman crazy. it can also take him to unimaginable riches and peace.

i am taken by the great, great courage it takes to work like this. i am so grateful for ola’s courage. i am learning so much.

the “i don’t know, yet” way of working. the “we will find out as we go” way of working. the “give up so much of what you thought you knew and just fall” way of working. the non-attachment to ideas, non-attachment to modes of working, non-attachment to control way of working.

it’s exhausting for everyone. i would imagine, especially for ola, because she holds the responsibility for it. she has to hold the brave face when all around her feel lost and betrayed and taken out into the desert to die.

when the ship seems lost at sea so easy to blame the captain and overlook the fact that you weren’t rowing right. or that you were asleep when you were simply suppose to stay awake and keep watch.

ola is moses, taking us out of the slavery of egypt to possibly starve in the desert or reach the promised land. we are the complaining chosen people, crying “why did you bring us out here to die in the desert, we were better off as slaves to pharaoh. as least then we were comfortable.”

“you must risk something that matters.” sings my man tom.

this wings of desire is a rehearsal in faith. a rehearsal of faith. a rehearsal of faith. and moses wasn’t telling the people to trust in him. moses was telling the people to trust in God. God will provide. moses was the angel who saw God face to face and brought the message down from the mountain. the angel. the messenger, who stayed true to the message. was responsible to the message no matter the personal cost.

“i’ve seen the promised land, i may not get there with you.” wake me God from my slumber. doing a play, creating art is such a sacred act of faith. it is a religious act. such a religious act.

the thing about praying the same prayers everyday. each day and meaning it. saying the words as if for the first time. a great training for the discipline required in stage acting. knowing that we never repeat anything. each time is the first time. it just is. forever unique. dip your toe in the river. take it out. immediately dip it back in. you’ve dipped your toe into two different rivers. blah. blah. blah.

today is our day off. fedja is on the repair. he is healing. i believe it. may see him today if he wishes.

left my script at schiedam. will go to the office and get another.

saw a simply amazing production of hedda gabler last night in utrecht. hedda’s death scene. one of those magic moments in the theatre. ivo is an amazing director. i love his style. i am going to school here in amsterdam. watching these brilliant dutch actors. what will america be when i return?

Love is expensive. the question is are we willing to pay.

the waiter will bring the “rekening”. we have the choice to hide. sneak out. not pay. we have the choice to leave a good tip.

here’s my good tip; my whole life has led to this day.

so much construction work being done in amsterdam

just outside
my window
a jackhammer chips away
the concrete.

digging it up. exposing

the beauty the swamp below.

love,

bernie

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