The Insides of Argentina

The Humor is Heroic

We have just played a concert in a small town
in the flat part of Argentina
Desert most of the time, moon up by string, half at full scream, other in dust left by a murder sun

I am sitting middle seat in the front of a Sprinter van
Two Argentine men with grey beards and thin hats hold me in laughter
They joke about each others age and fatigue and ask me what kind of music we played

It is the last night of the heaviest rains to fall in 40 years
Streets on the low side of town are flooded
Cars up to their windshields, streets running to creeks
There is silence but not sadness as we pass

One man has lost a wife to cancer
I saw the pictures under the paintings by the green couch
The humor is heroic, as I briefly think of what must be happening, everywhere

We drop the other man off at an old instrument store downtown, its 1 a.m.
A teenage boy passes on a bike where the girl in the rolled up pants carried her vegetables by earlier, In the circle rains, maybe the only sadness I felt today

Once I saw a doctor and she asked if I was homosexual
I told her I was not and it wouldn’t matter anyhow
I tell something similar to the man in Argentina when he asks about my wife
Something like a wife, we are kind of married, I love him

It’s not much of a problem to me or him
And I feel my heart smile that maybe the world is getting braver
I don’t think he knows it, we share veins

The Park in Chos Malal

The shadows have outgrown the trees
at the park in Chos Malal
The old lamps, black, faux Corinthian column, deaf light
Two girls pass by arm in arm
They are the only ones here but for the young boy
I can here running somewhere I can’t see

I step on a pine cone and stop to write to you and me and no one
by the trunk halved by man
On the yellow cement where the people must walk at earlier hours

My best friend and his father share cigarettes now
By the corner they talk about money
Where the park ends
Nothing is illuminated
The wind is dark
I never want to sleep
The girls pass by again
I’m beginning to think its love, not fear, that keeps them holding each other’s arms
That is a beautiful thought

The Wind in Patagonia

The wind in Patagonia is
the wind of Baby Mozart, Jesus, wind of Big Foot, el hombre greis,
the Chupacabra, wild winds of Zeno, Muhammad, the last note Thelonious Monk ever played, The Art of War erased, Virgin Mothers
The mysteries are made here
by the ash of the meteor, the forgotten to disappear

There is no money in this wind
No one to figure out how to sell yourself to comes off the watercolor hill

It takes me a moment
to stop the imagining, the awe
this does not need to be exceptional

Up the Stairs to a City

Child cry it is just joy you seek
A heart to overcome the mountain
with the crooked finger at its top

Little Argentine wind through the elderly mother’s curls
You have seen all of the years
Step slowly with no shame, you are heroes

Telephoning someone’s Uncle, impatient thumb
His bottom lip touched by the plaid collar held by the say nothing blue sweater
You too are fine sir, to me, though your watch is fast, elbow craned on the armrest

You are the woman to take care of me
Smile, I trust this smile, not most, yours, as we enter
The procedure world takes hold, this is not life

A life worth living requires the wild constant emptying of the mind
Onto papers and Out from mouths
The way we make our faces move with our hearts

I will come out of this airplane in an hour, we start new. Lady, man, child, worker. I am all of you.

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About Todd Clouser

A young, genre-defying guitarist, composer, and writer, Todd Clouser is an accomplished musician across the creative music spectrum, leading a unique path to recognition as an act to watch, finding his own voice performing with musicians from Keb Mo to "downtown" NYC jazz legend Steven Bernstein. Clouser's impassioned performances run from piano balladry to dense jazz and groove, exciting audiences with an approach meant to bend the rules of artistic labeling. "A Love Electric" documents Todd's most aggressive ensemble yet, an energetic group based in the stylings of 70's era electric musics. The February 2013 release of The Naked Beat, Clouser's third album of the year, marks the first record to feature his wildly engaging vocals. Think Zappa meets Burroughs with the songwriting sensibilities of Beck and Hendrixian guitar heroics. Clouser is an original, always evolving, and always honest to the spirit of the imagination. In addition to Todd's website, you can find him on Twitter and YouTube.

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