The Frank Moore Archives

Hidden treasures discovered while digging through Frank Moore's huge archives.

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Category: Writings (page 1 of 3)

How to Handle an Anthropologist on KPFA

Michael LaBash, Jovelyn Richards and Linda Mac

The new book, How to Handle an Anthropologist: Russell Shuttleworth, PhD interviews shaman/performance artist Frank Moore, was featured on “Jovelyn’s Bistro” on KPFA’s Cover to Cover Open Book, August 21, 2019. 

Linda Mac and Michael LaBash joined Jovelyn Richards in the studio for this live broadcast. Listen to the interview here:

About Jovelyn Richards:

“Sometimes We Need Art, More Than Food & Water.” Jovelyn Richards interviews artists who explore emotional intimacy through their narratives within theatre, film and literature, along with voices less heard. She talks with artists who explore emotional intimacy and the fringes of our culture. Jovelyn Richards is a writer, international performance artist and speaker. She holds both an MA and MFA in the Humanities.

For more about the book visit http://www.eroplay.com/hthaa/.

Connie

Frank’s mom, Connie.

Connie completed the fading into death
this afternoon.
She has always lived in her young mind,
always was a black sheep,
raising black sheep,
always wanted to know,
always hungry for education,
NO MATTER WHAT!
WHATEVER IT TOOK!
Deaf to CAN’T,
to dumb rules!

No time for social frills,
no time for BS,
no time for limits.
Just time for deadpan joy of just everyday,
for no-nonsense love,
for pushing and demanding for
possibilities.
She bit,
or pretended not to hear,
just going for what’s right
like a tank…
running you over.

You were a fool
if you believed
her mcgoo act!
Hero? Yes!
Always growing beyond
working in a doctor’s office,
after getting a college education,
after the leaving of Jim,
threatened by his black sleep wife,
after pushing me onto THE REAL WORLD,
after raising Jerry and me,
after getting out of Utah as a free thinker!

Just taking Tums and aspirins,
Connie at 79 lived a very rich life…
always young in life…
now always
will be young!

Jerry and I are so lucky
to be in the black sheep family of
CONNIE!

 © Frank Moore 5/19/2000

Connie and Jerry’s visit in 1995 begins at 42:00

Creating A Masterpiece

Written by Frank Moore January 19, 2000.
Published in Lummox Journal, March 2000.

An artist starts, let’s say, a painting with a set idea of what he is going to paint. Sooner or later he makes a “mistake” — a color or a line which doesn’t fit in the original idea — which “ruins” the painting. When this happens most people give up, thinking that they are not cut out to be artists, and withdraw back into the common existence. Others try to pretend that they didn’t make the mistake, that the color or line isn’t there on the canvas. They go on painting as before. When they are done, they have painted the shadow of what they wanted. Moreover, this shadow is covered with a haze. Others keep starting over whenever they make mistakes, not accepting any mistakes. They are rewarded for their endurance with the perfect copy of the thought form which they had held for all this time. They are rewarded by what they think they want to create. Their thought form has been brought down into the material plane. The creation is perfect. But it is not a masterpiece. It is perfect within the limitations placed around it by the rigidness of the artist. The work is perfect, but not free.

A masterpiece is perfect and free. The master artist paints an adventure in color, words, or notes. What others see as mistakes, he sees as challenges, boxes out of which he has worked as the basis on which he creates a totally new, fresh pattern. These challenges, boxes, keystones, keep appearing as he works, demanding the artist’s flexibility. If the artist looks back, trying to hold on to what he thought the painting was or would be, he gets trapped in a box out of which he must battle or be turned into a rigid, bitter pillar of salt. The artist has to keep his whole attention on the swirling colors in front of him in order to be the creator.

To create a masterpiece, the artist has to use and risk every bit of himself. But he also has to create with God, for God is the one who creates what most people call mistakes, and that the master artist sees as his tools and materials. God does not create for the artist. God just provides the tools, the guiding bumps. It is up to the artist’s free will whether he creates or gets dragged down by the weight of the tools. When the artist is creating, he feels no weight.

The most important masterpiece is a lifetime. This is a statement of hard fact. Creating a masterpiece in every day living is governed by the same rules as creating a masterpiece in paint, but much harder because the artist is also the canvas. In every period of time, in every land, there are a few masterpieces of art and writing. But a masterpiece lifetime is much rarer.

Photo by Kevin Rice. Scanned from contact sheet.

a rant on an open mike

the open mike
is the most democratic channel…
well maybe except for hyde park sproul soapbox freedom.
anyone can sign up
to step up to bat,
step up to the mike
and into the sacred belljar
where art poetry is free to expose truth,
free to use whatever it takes,
whatever style it takes to expose truth…
that is, until your given time runs out
and hooks you around the neck and yanks you
from the belljar stage.
but in the belljar channel
you are in danger testing, crying, being so sucking bad that both
you and they curse your birth, sharing found ideas, listening to
the silence and the polite clapping greeting your bombs or to your
ravings of rage that hit too close to home, messing up the nice
polite parlor.

entering the open mike belljar is a leap into uncontrolled
possibilities, uncomfortable quest through good bad boring
embarrassing and sometimes magical.

nobody owns the belljar,
except when you are in the channel,
in the pipe behind the mike,
holding the modern talking stick
until it is time to pass it on to the next.
but the talking stick is everyone’s,
for anyone with something to express.
if one is banned, censored, from holding the talking stick
just to punish, just to protect a neat fragile nice order,
we all are banished from the sacred talking stick which becomes
just a cock that we rub.

i get worried if my words and images fit through veins clogged with fatty taboos of polite appropriate of comfortability.

i get worried…is the art that small that it fits through that pinhole of a hole…so small that nudes on the walls, words on telephone poles, any shift in the social power structure threatens the very reality fabric.

i’m too proud to admit the art poetry is that small. so my art becomes a roto-rooting balloon covered in razors tipped in draino acid, pushing pressuring uncomfortable unsocial grinding against the grain until the killer fatty clots of taboos burst out the other end and go down the drain like trouble.

i don’t really go after the hitlers, the mccarthys, the helms, or their brown shirts.

they are just limp-dicked power-junkies with swiss-cheese egos, each hole filled with inferiority. they are just moons with no power light of themselves, just reflecting fear.

no, i go after the nice people who never asked where the trains were going, boxcars filled with people. didn’t have to. only suspected, only heard rumors…after all, the general is a friend. never said, excuse me, i am a jew too, a jap too, a gay too, i’ve negro blood running in my body, aids too. i’m a commie who took home movies of our nude kids. so better put me on that train too. better put us all on that train. there ain’t no train big enough!

i go after the nice people who keep going to work after seeing their friends missing, after hearing rumors of blacklist and blackball. must write something about that subject to THE TIMES. he used to be such a pleasant fellow…but now he is a whining paranoid…not a sort to have to tea. he is like a wet messy fart. not in my backyard!

yes, i go after nice people. but my time in the belljar is about over.
so i’ll leave you with this. what is happening in your backyard is what really matters. so be sure to weed!

© 1995 Frank Moore

NEA Diary, Part 1

As part of receiving an NEA grant, Frank was required to keep a diary during the year of his grant. This is the first time Frank wrote these familiar words.

From Frank’s NEA Diary:

October 20, 1986:

“We are in the cave of dream. We are in a battle of an underground war against fragmentation. The battle is on all realities. The controllers have always tried to fragment us. Fragment us from each other. Imprison us in islands of sex, color, religion, politics, classes, labels, etc., etc., etc., etc., etc. They fragment our inner worlds, they blow our individual realities apart, and play the pieces against one another. They are us, or a part of us. They are the controllers, the politicians, the sexists, the women’s libbers, the pornographers, the censors, the moralist, the church, the media, the businessmen, educators, the victims and the powerful.

They are us. They have divided us from our power, from our beauty, from our lust of life and pleasure. They have divided us from most of reality … divided dying from living … sex from living, sex from pleasure. We are kept in boxes of fear, of mistrust. We are kept waiting … kept waiting to do what we want … waiting for enough money, enough schooling, for everything to be right. We are kept waiting and protecting and hiding and suffering.

Time to do battles with the boxes.

Our tools are magic, our bodies, and dreams.”

November 1, 1986:

“The last (above) entry is part of a larger essay of my philosophy, and was read at my L.A. five hour piece (CAVE OF DREAM) and was read at my U.C.B. piece.”


Press release for the “Cave of Dream” performance in Los Angeles, October 18, 1986.

THE MAGICAL CAVE LOVERS

“The First Rebel”, oil on canvas board, 12” x 15”, 1966 by Frank Moore

Magical Cave Lovers by Frank Moore. Reading by Linda Mac.

March 20, 1995

the cave is our world, his and mine. together around the fire in the warm cave. it has always been this way. mother and grandmother…mothers and grandmothers have always been in the cave above the tribe, have always been talking to the world spirits for the tribe, have always been taking the tribe out of the world of survival, cold wet fear…into our body cave of warm laughing joy, taking them into us deep for awhile.

and there has always been one of his kind in the cave. mother said that before i was born, the one who she lived in the cave with died. his death cursed the tribal field, cursed the tribal planting. the tribe again survived only by the hunt and the gathering. the spirit of the field would only come back when mother could mate in the tribal field with a healer after hair grew on his body. until that time, during times of moon blood, mother led the tribal women in the chant of plant magic, keeping their knowing of the secrets of growing alive during the years of waiting.

as the world spirits desired it, for many years no deformed male baby who could be a healer lived for more than for a few days within the tribe…even when mother secretly took such babies from the sacrifice rock and brought them to the cave, where she and the old healer tried to bring them fully into life.

so after the death of the healer, mother had to make the secret and dangerous journey to the sacrifice rocks of other tribes in her quest for a deformed boy baby, for a spirit that didn’t dwell in the world of survival, for a magical son who could be a healing bridge between all realities. mother had to hide behind the sacrifice rock of each tribe for many nights, waiting for a father to put a deformed boy child on the rock to die.

one day the tribe discovered that mother was not in the cave. they went into a ritual dance and a fast, piling all the food outside the cave to bring her back. they had a feast when they discovered that she had returned with a new healer. she had found a deformed boy baby. she saved him from the sacrifice rock and carried him to the cave. there she gave birth to him. everyone knows that cave magicians can give birth to even full-grown men. so no one was at all surprised to see this baby in the cave.

mother took care of him, raised him in the cave. she grew to understand his sounds, his moving body, his spirit talk. i understand him now. as he grew up, his healing magic became physical touch. he was in the future and the past and the world spirit…linked with mother’s body. now linked with my body.

when hair grew on his body, mother took him as her magical mate. then the secrets of growing, the magic of the plants, again came out of the moon cave and into the field. once again, the spirit entered the field and was attended to by the women of the tribe.

once again, before every harvest and every planting, the tribe carried mother and her magical mate to the fields. there she would take him deep inside her. they became one body together in ritual pleasure, offering the pleasure to the earth spirit as a thanksgiving. these were the only times he left the cave. these were the only times that she took him deep into her, although they were always together in the sacred play when they were in the cave, rubbing, licking, laughing, moaning, crying within the awareness of life. he and i are still in that awareness cave.

mother got big and i came out of her into the cave. if i was a male baby, mother would have gone like a spirit with the baby out of the cave to where the woman of the chief slept. she would have put the baby beside the woman and then slipped away. the boy would be born to the woman of the chief. the magic of the cave mother can only be passed on to a daughter of the cave. if i did not come from mother’s body, she would have gone on a quest for a cave daughter, leaving the healer alone in the cave. the tribeswomen would take care of him as best as they could. but if mother would die on the quest, the healer would die. then the tribe would die.

i grew up cuddled up between their bodies, playing with their bodies, smelling the herbs mother hung to dry in the cave, smelling the teas and other medicines mother made from them to give those who came to the cave to be healed. i ate the food and drank the water and the milk that the tribe brought to the mouth of the cave everyday.

i always played with mother and the healer…to me, he is laughing face because his hairy face always has tickled me…when they played together. but she put me into the child hole to play whenever she and he did rituals with a tribesperson. grandmothers from long ago dug these child holes. there is one just outside the cave for when mother danced with the chief before every hunt, before every battle, arousing his power.

i now arouse him.

there is a child hole at mother’s secret place where she goes when the tribe faces death from nature offended…the secret place where she offers herself to earth spirits as a sacrifice by working herself up by dancing and rubbing until who she is burns away. and there is a giant children hole in the middle of the moon cave where all the tribeswomen with children without body hair go during the times of blood. i watched the rituals from the child hole. when i could get out of the child hole, i could take part in the rituals…even before body hair and times of moon blood.

mother started teaching me cave mother magic and how to combine and blend it with the magic of laughing face. laughing face has always been my brother, my playmate. i grew up understanding his sounds, understanding his body, hearing his thoughts, seeing through his psychic eyes. he is my body. since i had body hair, he has been my mate.

mother started teaching me cave mother magic. cave mother magic is body magic. the body of the cave mother is the body of the earth. after i could get out of the children hole in the moon cave, mother started teaching me cave mother magic. mother said a long time ago the women of the tribe did not bleed together as one body in the full bright moon time. each woman bled alone at her own time away from the tribal fire, bled alone in dangerous cold darkness. one day, the moon, full and bright, told cave mother that the women will only have their time of blood in the nights and days of bright moon. the moon told cave mother that on the night before the full bright moon, all the women with all the children before body hair should leave the tribal fire, carrying a flaming branch, and dwell together in the special cave until the last moon blood fell. the times of moon blood are the most magical.

during times of moon blood, the elder men with the chief stay with the healer in the healing cave, taking care of him until the cave mother returns. they feed him, give him drink, bathe him. but they themselves fast and chant and rock and gently touch him. they can not understand him, can not see through his eyes. but as they sit around him, his spirit fills them and they are filled with visions.

mother began my magical training by taking me with her when she left the moon cave during the waiting day and the day of restoring. on these journeys she would collect herbs, special stones, healing mud, and all the other magical objects that she would prepare and use with the healer in their cave, our cave. she told me the story and the power behind each object. she told me the secret magical stories hidden within the stories that the women shared within the moon cave, rubbing one another, rocking together, enjoying their single body.

after the times of blood, when we returned to the healing cave, mother started letting me help her prepare the healing objects. mother said the objects by themselves do not have healing powers. but the body magic calls forth the healing effect of the object just as mother and the healer call forth the healing magic within each other. after someone left the cave after a ritual, mother started explaining to me what had happened. most of this explaining was not done in words, but by mother and laughing face playing with me, turning my body and spirit on.

laughing face would melt into the person’s body as they played, seeing what was needed. sometimes by touching deeply, he could transmute the inner sickness. other times, when he felt death was approaching, he and mother would arouse the body spirit to melt with death. but most of the time, as the healer was physically melted with the person, mother saw with the healer’s eyes, felt with his body. then the healer would lay back, and mother would begin her body dance, rubbing wet warm, sucking the other into her, licking coolness, blowing life into the other, dancing hard and long deep into the woman cave. the other could be the ill person. often it was the healer. just before she left, mother started to pick me to be the other dancer. the dance would fade into sleep. then just before dawn, mother would wake the person up, give him herbs or a magical object, give him rituals, then would send him back into the tribe in survival.

i absorbed all of this. i saw boys come to the healing cave when they first had hair on their bodies. the boy with first body hair would be barred from entering the moon cave on the first time of blood after body hair first appeared. the cave mother would ritualistically force his mother to not bring him into the moon cave again because he would never be again her son. the cave mother would send him to the healing cave. there, the chief would bar him from the cave, telling him to sit on the rock outside the cave, to wait for cave mother, to wait, not moving, without food, without water, without sleep.

days later, the cave mother would return to the healing cave, without giving any notice to the sitting would-be man. she would enter the cave and would lie beside the healer. the elders would slowly dance from the cave to the sitting would-be man, lift him up, carrying him into the cave mother, lying him on her, belly on belly. then the elders would leave to dance outside of the cave.

mother would gently let the boy enter her body, guiding him to melt with her in body and spirit, pulling him into the deep trance of transforming pleasure. then, when the boy had died to his child soul, the elders of the tribe would enter the cave, lift the entranced would-be man onto their shoulders, and carry him out of the cave and on into his quest for a vision, for a new soul, and for a proof of his worthiness to be within the tribe.

when a girl first entered the moon cave on her first time of blood, the women gathered around her and rocked her gently day and night until the moon blood stopped flowing between her legs. then they washed her childhood away, washed her into womanhood, washed her first in their moon blood, then washed her in clear cold water, welcoming her into their collective body.

then the cave mother took the new woman outside of the cave, laying her down on a bed of leaves. mother would reach deep inside the new woman, gently breaking the seal of skin, if it had not been broken in child play. the mother started calling forth from inside the new woman, started calling forth wave upon wave of intense moaning burning pleasure moving within the new woman’s body, joyfully burning up the little girl’s insides, the body of the young new woman writhing, opening wide to let the whole universe in. when the little girl had been completely burnt up, the tribal women took the new woman into their circle to rock with her.

as my mother did before, i live with laughing face in our cave of love and play, far outside the reality of cold survival of the tribe. most of the time, people of the tribe come to our cave not to be healed of some sickness, nor to know the future, nor to appease the spirits, nor anything that you in your time might think would be magically important. most of the time, they come to be rocked by me and the healer, to be sung to by us, to play with us, to come into our personal love of warm playing skin. the possibility of this personal love has not truly entered their reality of survival…except in their memories of what they have experienced within our cave…slowly this pleasure playing of personal love has leaked out of the cave over the lifetimes of the many cave mothers from the time when the first young girl found the first healer and hid with him in a cave, sneaking out to steal a blazing branch from the group fire of the human pack, sneaking out at night to gather berries and fruit…sneaking out so that the pack wouldn’t kill the useless deformed boy…sneaking out until she became an earth spirit to the pack when they caught sight of flashes of her. the young cave couple lived a new kind of existence together. in the pack there has always been the physical love of a mother for her babies, and children of the pack always have played together. but when the children entered the adult pack reality of cold survival which was dominated by fear, by individual isolation, and by being together solely out of physical need, this love and this child play quickly faded into the ultimate black beyond the light of the night fire of the pack.

but in the first cave couple, the personal love that was the mother-child physical love within the pack transmuted into the personal love between people that hadn’t been linked by the birthcord. this new kind of love was what melted the bodies of the first cave couple together. their playing together as children in adult bodies called forth this new kind of love. slowly their play revealed totally new physical pleasures which humans had never experienced before. in the pack, there was an ever-present lurking of a violent urge erupting in some male, grabbing a female from behind just to let her go a minute later after the pressure of the urge had been relieved, the woman going off to soothe her wounds.

but within their cave playing, the first cave mother and the first healer began discovering the many paths of pleasure within their body of two…long giggling tickling belly warm chest moaning exploding white light turning colors sleeping warm skin. on these paths of pleasure, the moon came to them and taught them magic. the moon told many strange things…that men were not just protectors and providers…that men have a direct and active role in the creation of life…that everyone in the pack is physically connected to one another as a body. becoming aware of these things would transform the pack into a tribe, calling forth tribal love, extending into the land and animals. this awareness would come slowly as the tribespeople visited the cave, visited the personal love of the cave mother and the healer, experience within their own bodies the new physical pleasure. they would take tiny bits of the expanding cave reality back to their relationships within the tribe. the moon said every pack had a cave couple developing, hidden, playing.

i am seeing into your time through laughing face’s eyes. i’m seeing past the marble temples where cave mothers became sex goddesses…past the men of power dividing the cave mother from the wounded healer, chaining her to promote isolation by turning her into just a safety valve for the release of guilt of power and the frustration of unattainable desire.

but laughing face and i are still in our hidden cave waiting for you to come and play with us.


“Deep Core Love”, digital painting, 2004 by Frank Moore

Art is a Bitch

Nude Stacy by Frank Moore

Someone asked:

1. What were the THREE MOST IMPORTANT things you did to get a break and start moving toward recognition as a performance artist?

2. While you were moving toward getting to where you needed to go, how did you make enough money to survive while not taking away TOO much time and energy from your creative work?

3. How do you spend your days now, mostly? e.g., approximately what percentage of each day is spent writing, marketing yourself, planning shows, arranging tours, scoping out and applying for grants, bringing in outside income, acting as a mentor to other artists, etc.?

4. What do you love MOST about doing what you do now?

5. What do you HATE most about doing what you do now?

I can only answer
art is not a career
not a money maker
but a money taker
an addiction,
a life long master
who does not give
a flying fuck
what I “THE ARTIST”
loves, hates,
what I want to do,
where I want to go

the artist’s job is to surrender,
to follow, to melt into art

making money is easy
but the river of art rarely flows
naturally that way
without damming the river up

so keep your day job
get a day job you like doing
because art is your mistress of night
& you ain’t her pimp
she’ll take your money & time
she will take you into the basement
of the unseen

you’ll get old with her
attending her needs
rocking on the porch with her
no goals, no plans, no marketing,
no rush.

Just rocking, just surprises everyday,
just people dropping by,
just floating without knowing,
just doing, just suffering, just enjoying.
Just following.

Just trust the bitch art!

© Frank Moore 03/20/1999

“Frankly Speaking”

Frank wrote a column called “Frankly Speaking” for each issue of his zine, The Cherotic (r)Evolutionary, TC(r), that he published in the 1990s. Reading through them now … they are filled with gems … and so much of it applies to right now.

This, for example, is excerpted from the TC(r) #2 “Frankly Speaking” column:

“I’m lazy. For months I have been thinking about writing about the liberal sickness called “political correctness.” This sickness fragments people into artificial groups (black, gay, women, disabled, etc.) within which they then are forced to stay. This sickness makes the individual so fragile that any “bad” or “wrong” word or image (nigger, fag, chick, cripple) can completely shatter the person. This fragileness makes it impossible to function in the real world without the artificial dome of pc-censorship. I was going to examine this sickness within the art world, using the art combine Highways/High Performance magazine as my case study. But I kept putting it off. I’m lazy. Then Curtis York’s letter fell into my hands. Now I don’t need to write that article!

Talking about pc-censorship brings us to the cartoon by the rock’n’roll artist John Seabury. We have gotten shit for running his “pig rape” drawing in this issue … from people who normally are against censorship. I’ve been thinking about why this drawing gets people so angry or uptight. I don’t think it is the images. After all, look at LaBash’s drawings. The taboo-breaking image contents are equal between them. The difference between these two artists is LaBash is nonlinear while Seabury is linear.”

(Frank is talking about “The Political Correctness Mafia” by Curtis York that is in Issue 2. You can see John Seabury’s cartoon here:  https://www.eroplay.com/seabury-pig.html)

And then there is this excerpted from Frank’s column in Issue #4:

“I was feeling better. Then I remembered that some “gay” bookstores will not carry T.C.(r) because it is not “queer enough”! It doesn’t matter that about eighty percent of our contributors consider themselves gay or bi. It doesn’t matter that some of the works focus directly on “gay” reality. It doesn’t matter that T.C.(r.) has always been included in the queer zine scene. And it does not matter that I am a lesbian in a male body.”

“Frankly Speaking” from TC(r) issue #4

This is the very first “Frankly Speaking” column. It appeared in Issue #0. Frank thought that Issue #0 was totally self-promotion so he didn’t put it on the website and it wasn’t available to buy! We have just added this column to the site. Issue #0 will appear in the compilation book.

SPEAKING FRANKLY
Editorial by FRANK MOORE
April 10, 1991

At first look, this first issue of TCR looks like a shameless self-promotion, a big advertisement for my book, Cherotic Magic, for my apprenticeship, for my 6-session course, for my performance art and videos and tapes, and who knows what else. Well, you have to start somewhere. And that somewhere is the exploration of the magical edge I have been on for about 25 years. This promotion that we call TCR is a promotion of the edge itself.

Since Cherotic Magic was published, there has been a written dialog centering around the book. What is exciting about this dialog is that the people in the dialog are serious explorers of the edge themselves. They are writers, artists, publishers, cultural revolutionaries, reality subverters around the world. In this issue, under the cover of writing about my work, they talk about magical issues that I for one have been hungry to talk about for a long time in the depth that is possible with people who have committed their lives to going across the taboo border to effect evolutionary change. In future issues of TCR, I hope we will move far beyond the book, Cherotic Magic, and give one another aid and comfort on the edge by linking together, by announcing new findings of our hidden experiments of nonlinear change.

TCR is a journal of the edge. TCR is an offensive movement or measure, offering alternatives to the fragmentation, isolation, personal helplessness which is actively promoted by the combine of power systems. TCR is anarchical, based on the personal responsibility to reshape reality into a more human, trusting, loving reality, full of fun and pleasure. TCR is not a reaction. It is a magical act of enjoying life. It is a journal of and for people who are doing this magical act. Thanks to S/R Press, we finally have a channel of communications among the personal revolutions … otherwise known as mutations … which has always been the main fuel for evolution. Now we magical misfits know we are not alone, that there are others out/in here/there feeling, thinking, trying, doing similar things. This just by itself should speed evolution up.

Let me hear from you. Let us play together…

All of the columns are linked from here: https://www.eroplay.com/frankly.html

High Performance Magazine 1988: “The Function Of The Arts In Culture Today”

In 1988, Frank was one of a few artists who was invited by High Performance magazine to contribute a statement on the subject of “The Function Of The Arts In Culture Today”. Here is the piece that Frank wrote:

STATEMENT

Art can be to pacify, to make money, to decorate, to entertain. But I am committed to art as an underground war against fragmentation on all realities. This should be the position of avant-garde art. The goal of this art should be to create alternatives to the fragmented society.

As artists our tools are magic, our bodies, taboos and dreams. We need to be warriors who will go into the areas of taboo, will push beyond where it is comfortable and safe. We must be idealists, willing to live ideals.

In the past 20 years, the calling of art has become the career of art. The passion and idealism became the studying of the trends of what will be “in” next. The passionate vulnerability that creates magic was replaced by a cool and clever intellectualism. We got seduced by high tech…seduced by the modern media, by the quest for large audiences.

Performance is being ruined by trying to package it as off-beat cabaret entertainment. Some performance fits into this slot. But when most performance is forced into neat cabaret format, making performance acceptable and profitable, performance becomes a hip form of nightclub watching, groovy TV watching. Performance is being limited in time and space for acceptability. Performance is in danger of becoming society’s lapdog, instead of a magical lab.

Art is the way society dreams, the way society expands its freedom, explores the forbidden in safety. Society needs its dream art, just as an individual needs to dream or go insane. Our fragmented world needs taboo-breaking dreams to get back to freedom. Our society is at a fork in its growth. It can go deeper into high tech impersonal isolation, or it can rediscover the magic that happens when physical and emotional humans actively and directly link up with one another. Art can either just follow society, recording the trends, or it can take a pathfinder role. We artists must not make cynical statements from our inner worlds about how fucked up the rest of society is. We must create alternative community realities in which people can be actively involved.

Here is the letter they sent inviting him to contribute:

Here is Frank’s article as it appeared in the magazine:

Frank’s article was also published by Inter-Relations in the book, Frankly Speaking: A Collection of Essays, Writings and Rants
https://www.eroplay.com/franklyspeaking/

LOCKED IN, LOCKED OUT

By Frank Moore
March 12, 2004

Evolution searches out potential
Within every life form,
Within every experiment,
Flowing through change,
Flowing through adaptations
Into new possibilities.

This tide wave
Moves everything,
Shapes everything,
Leaving everything
Which doesn’t find
The ever changing
Potential within its soul
Behind…
Just didn’t live out
Within the dynamic dance
Of existence.
Failures are the golden steps
Of expanding creation.

But we civilized humans
Have been denied
For most of the blink
Of our history
Most of our potential.
The tide wave
Has been dammed up,
Evolution has been funneled
Down into a narrow,
High pressure laser
Focused for profit and power
Of the hidden few.

Most of our potential
Is locked in,
Locked away,
Locked out,
Locked up.
Locked away in closets,
Locked up in factories
Of meaningless work,
Locked away in warehouses
Of waiting to die…
Death waits
A dull lifetime to come.
Locked outside the margins,
Locked outside on the homeless streets,
Locked inside the suburbs of isolation,
Locked within the walled communities
Of comforting unreasoning fear,
Locked up within well-paid sitcoms,
Locked out toiling in the fields,
Not allowed to eat the food,
Dying in the false famine,
Dying from thirst
In the African dust
Manufactured from bottled demand,
Dying from sickness
Preventable,
Curable,
Locked away within
The dark other,
Locked in the kitchen
Cooking artificial food
Of bland pretending
Routine not fulfilling
Any need or love,
Locked down in chains
On the sofa,
On the shrink’s couch absorbing unattainable desires,
Locked in gridlock,
Not coming,
Not going,
Just sitting within
Unmoving isolation,
Listening to the latest muzak
Of loveless loneliness,
All shining and cold,
Locked away
In the passionless bedroom
With the glass ceiling,
Tied down in the bed of hopelessness,
Tied down,
Locked up in the nursing home,
Lifetimes of wisdom
Dismissed and forgotten,
Locked up in padded cells,
Dangerous healing imagination
Being burned up by electric shock,
Burning up the trash that could
Save us all.
Locked up on Death Row,
Within the isolation cells
Lies change.
It will not die,
Even under tortures
Of ten thousand years.
Just lock it up!
Dam it up
With the oily gum
Of dogma!
Manufacture fear and mistrust
Of the other of difference.
Pour the many flavors
Of this poison
Of bigotry
From childhood
In mother milk,
In God’s image,
On the blackboard
Of coloring within the lines…
Lock what’s acceptable,
Normal,
Within the lines…
Then send these good citizens
Off on crusades of killing
Of the different other,
Of killing off diversity
Which is the curse
Of profitability.
The brew of bigotry
Blinds the eyes
to red is the color
Of all human blood,
Blinds us to
We all are locked in
Locked up,
Locked away
On the plantations
Of slavery,
In the sweatshops
Of suppression,
In the factory farm fields
Of exploitation,
In the occupied territories
Of closing walls,
Of refugee camps
Of wandering Jews,
Of death camps,
Warehouses of all kinds
Filled with waiting-to-die
Living hopes, dreams,
Loves, imaginations,
Cultures of the human spirit
Which do not fit into power,
Wealth, and the controlled reality.

Yep, we all are in there,
Including most of you
Who believe you are
The masters and the guards
In your dank cubbyholes
Of fears and addictions.

And within our cells
We have been digging
Throughout the ages
Underground passages
Linking passions together.
When we reach to touch one another,
The bars melt like butter.
We sing together
In words that the masters
Can’t understand.
We create together,
Dream, imagine together.
We hope and make love
Together behind the dam
In evolution.

The silly mentally retarded girl
Giggles as she runs to hug
An absolute stranger.
This is hope
Of evolution.
The police hose fires
High-pressure profits
Blasting of shortages
Through the dam’s hole…
Business as usual.
But it looks like evolution
Is about to burst through the dam.
Will it destroy all of us?
Who knows!
We always have lived
With Dooms Day
Judgment Day
Around the corner.
Sometimes it came,
Sometimes it didn’t.

But I’m betting
That our underground potential
Will be released in the coming flood
And will expand.

But then
This is written by
A guy
Who was supposed to have died
LONG AGO
In one of those death cells!

There’s always hope
Hidden up our sleeves!


Emcee Lynx of Beltaine’s Fire reads “Locked In, Locked Out” on Frank Moore’s Shaman’s Den,
October 11, 2009. Watch the full show.

Jack Hirschman reads “Locked In, Locked Out” on Frank Moore’s Shaman’s Den,
August 20, 2006.

Kirk Lumpkin reads “Locked In, Locked Out” on Frank Moore’s Shaman’s Den,
July 18, 2004.