Tribal Performance

Tribal Performance

september 30, 1992

i am not interested in
climbing up
onto the altar of the stage,
in hiding behind the invisible fourth wall.

i am not interested in
dividing myself
from the people,
from the magic,
from the tribal community.

i am not interested in
hiding
behind masks
or characters.

i am not interested in
doing monologs,
standing alone
and isolated
under the spotlight…

not interested in
being a cultural commentary.
not interested in
being a lone artist,
suffering,
alone,
traveling around the land,
chasing fame…
or at least recognition……
embittered
that art doesn’t pay.

i am not interested in
fucking you
the audience.

i am not interested in
just putting my cock
into your body.

i want much more than sex.

i want to put my whole body
into your body…
i want to take
your whole body
into my body.
i want
our naked skin
to melt together
in touch…
our skin
melted
into an organ of tribal body…
an organ of connection……..
an organ that brings everything within.
i want
to erase
the false role
of skin
as the dividing line
that separates
you from me,
the outside from within,
the above from the below.

i want us to be
in a tribal body,
in the state of community.
i want us to be
cozy,
wrapped up into one another’s bodies
as parts of one body….
rocking together.

i am not talking
symbolically or abstractly.
i am not talking
flashes or peak experiences.
i am not talking
about fractions of a second,
or seconds,
or minutes.
i am talking about
hours and days
within this tribal body
within the magical reality of performance.
i’m talking about
physical reality that
makes us sweat,
makes us be turned-on…
a reality that
we can touch and rub…
a reality of
human laughter
and heavy sobs of true feeling…
a reality
which sticks onto our bodies,
our naked tribal body…
and gets carried out
of the ritual space
into “the real world,”
“real life,”
infecting
that outer world
with the virus of
new alternatives and new possibilities.

but this tribal performance…
this calling up of tribal body,
tribal experience,
tribal reality…
is much more possible
when the “performance”
comes out of a tribal life….
when the tribal reality
is not limited
to the performance reality.

life on the road
for an artist
is lonely,
isolating.

this tends to
infect
both the artist
and the art.
and the fact of the matter is,
performance is
a full time occupation
for a single body…
and in cold practical reality,
this occupation does not pay the artist…
the artist has to be willing
to pay the art
for the privilege of doing it.
this has always been true.
this will not change.
this places the artist
who lives in only one body
in an almost impossible situation…
a situation
that is only made liveable by either
magic or compromise
(and compromise
is death
to both the art
and the artists).

but the artist
who lives and creates
within a tribal body,
a tribal community,
can perform
many different tasks
at once both
in the art
and in the mundane world.
the tribal body
can go to work
to get money,
do the art’s office work,
make the flier,
book tickets…..
all at the same time.
this is also true
for inside the ritual of art.

and besides,
the tribal body
has much more fun on the road…

and that fun
(joy)
infects
the art.

i have a dream for the 90’s….
that we will see
artist bands,
clans,
carnivals,
circuses…..
all self-contained
tribal communities…
roaming the country
doing art rituals.

yes,
i have a dream…
the night of the tribal bodies!

 

“Tribal Performance” poem by Frank Moore
Read by Edna Floretta
Background music: Sander Roscoe Wolff
Thumbnail photo by Kevin Rice

A segment from the web video series LET ME BE FRANK, Episode 5.
Website for the series: http://frankadelic.com/
Watch episodes: https://vimeo.com/channels/letmebefrank

Tribal Performance poem by Frank Moore artwork by LaBashTribal Performance poem by Frank Moore artwork by LaBash

Artwork by LaBash


Deborah Crooks reads “Tribal Performance” on Frank Moore’s Shaman’s Den, June 19, 2011.

wrapping and rocking

Wrapping/Rocking photo by Kevin Rice

the two nude figures sit in
time and space.
one upon the other.
rocking together.
rocking in their cave.

two magic figures
rocking together against time.
rocking back through time.
back and forth.

mother rocking her baby.
rocking against sickness and tears.
rocking back into love and peace.

in the cave,
unseen except by the spirits,
the holymen rock out of this reality
of personal isolation of greys.
rock until they rock
into the pulse of pure light.
back and forth until at-one-ness came,
until atonement came…
not just for them…
but those outside the cave.
magic rocking.
passion rocking.
almost sexual,
not quite…
very sexual…
beyond sexual.

two bodies rocking together,
rubbing isolation away.

grandpa sits in his rocking chair,
slowly holding onto creaking passion of living.
lovers dance,
rocking back and forth to the music.
sometimes fast.
sometimes slow.
passion rises warm and comforting.
pain and grief disappear.
a kid holding onto a blanket,
rocks back and forth,
holding onto the wrapping
that holds us all together.
colorful ribbons of our cocoon.
the 2 lovers pumping
hard on the swing, working together
to get the highest
thrilling flying and swooshing drop
on their bellies
and, yes,
in their loins.
almost sexual,
but not quite….
very sexy…
beyond sex.
mere sex would get
in the way of
the child-like melting
of earth and sky.
back and forth,
up and down,
wrapping us together
in brightness
and softness
and the magical commonness.

a girl laughs
on a big old rocking horse.
a g.i. holding his guts in,
blood oozing out,
rocks on the battlefield…
rocks to keep life in
and pain out.

light pulses,
reflected off tin and plastic.

daddy rocking baby to sleep on his lap.
cozy togetherness in ribbons,
rocking by the fire
far away from reality.

the arab woman,
on her knees beside
the unrecognizable remains of her husband
rocking to handle grief and pain.
a crazy rocks
on the street corner,
talking to beings from another reality.
wrap us up cozy.
wrap us warmly.
maypole dancers with ribbons.
admit that we all are wrapped up together
in see-through ties.

the gypsy woman,
eyes closed,
rocks back and forth,
giving master spirits
her voice and her body
to speak through.
rocking in her tent.

the boys rocking
uncontrollable from laughter
at their childish pranks.

rocking surrealistic in the darkness,
in their colorful bonds,
the two nude figures,
using magical passion to melt together,
rock like the blind,
like the insane,
like the holy men,
like lovers…
and the magical melting spreads out of the cave
and into the world.

© Frank Moore 1986-2002

Featured image photo by Kevin Rice.

“Wrapping/Rocking”
Poem by Frank Moore
Chanted by Michael LaBash
Background music:
excerpt from “Body Music”
performed by Frank Moore’s Chero Company: Leigh Gates, Michael LaBash, Alexi Malenky & Rourke Smith
Thumbnail photo by Kevin Rice
A segment from the web video series LET ME BE FRANK, Episode 4.
Website for the series: http://frankadelic.com/
Watch episodes: https://vimeo.com/channels/letmebefrank

Fuse

August 26, 2003

We are standing
before a gate,
On the edge
Of newness,
Holding hands.

All bodies desire
To merge with,
To fuse with
The core of every body
Within closeness,
Core within all cores.
This is the hidden secret
Of Gravity.
It is not a mere attraction
Of bodies…
Not sexual.
But this desire
Has been long
Thought of as impossible
In this reality of divisions…
Impossible
Because of unwillingness
To melt bodies and forms,
To melt through skin,
To melt beings
With the Other,
Going through layers,
Until cores fuse
Into just life.

But the time has come
For fusion,
A blend of explosions
And implosions
Outside of time and space,
Deep within our body,
Peeling away layers
By deep friction
Of warm love.
Time has come
To start to fade out
The reality of division
By lighting the fuse
Within the small hidden cave
Between our bodies,
Going within the warmth.

The reality of division
Started when the cell of Life
Divided and kept dividing.
This reality of difference
Released the possibilities
Of personal love and creativity,
The possibility of personal responsibility
And being in aware relationship
with THE OTHER.

But before the Pyramids…
A blink of an eye
Within an evolution…
The reality of division
Became CIVILIZATION,
Becoming a filter
Used by the elite
To turn evolution
Into progress
That benefited their
Empires of isolation.

Yes, we are standing
Before a gate,
On the edge of newness.
When we light the fuse
Within the hidden cave,
It will release unimagined
Possibilities.
It will release what has been
Locked up and away for so long.
Get the foot off the neck
Of dreams.
Get the weight of the world
Off the little kid’s back,
Release the deep beating heart
From the tight cage.
It may release blasts
Of tears, pain, joy, giggles.
It will release life
Full of wonder
deep inside our body.
Together we will take
The blasts within us,
Expanding us
In all directions.
We don’t even know
What fuse is.
It may not be any particular act.
We are just following it deeper,
Going past taboos,
Going beyond language…
Just going on a journey
Within between our bodies
Within our trust.
We will make our report
After we return
From the merge core,
And after we discover
A new language.

Life itself
Survives at all
Because of the secret journeys
Of the dismissed
Within small caves
Of love,
Personal trust,
And passion
Beyond taboo.

“Fuse”
A poem by Frank Moore
Read by Edna Floretta
Art/Animation by Michael LaBash
Music by Sander Roscoe Wolff
A segment from the web video series LET ME BE FRANK, Episode 10, “Theater of Melting”
Website for the series: http://frankadelic.com/
Watch episodes: https://vimeo.com/channels/letmebefrank