Pecha Kucha Night Taos, Volume 28

Marshall Kavanaugh – Pecha Kucha Night Taos Volume 28 from pechakuchataos on Vimeo.

 

As part of The PASEO Festival 2018 in Taos, NM this year, I was invited to discuss my work as an installation artist and services as a Dream Poet For HIre at Pecha Kucha, Volume 28. I decided to take the opportunity to wax poetic on the archetype of The Poet and how they fit in with the larger world based on the things I’ve learned and experienced over the years while typing poetry on the street. Here is the video from that night. Enjoy!

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Pecha Kucha Night Taos, Volume 28

“Libraries” at The Front in NOLA

Hey, New Orleans friends! Check it out! In addition to the installation I curated this past weekend at Currents New Media Festival, on Saturday some of my printed works were featured on the other end of the country.

“Libraries”, an exhibition curated by my alma mater Little Berlin, is up right now at The Front in New Orleans, LA. The exhibition will be on view at the gallery until July 9th.

Thank you to Will Owen and Cayla Lockwood for thinking of me and including me in the collection of zines and printed works from the Little Berlin zine library.

If you’re in New Orleans, go give the exhibition a look and check out some of my writing from the past couple of years.

“Libraries” at The Front in NOLA

In the Albuquerque Journal

“A Poem Is Where The Heart Is…” in the Albuquerque Journal this morning. Read the full article here: https://www.abqjournal.com/1170093/interactive-exhibit-features-poetry-that-reflects-spirit-of-taos-area.html

Come see Taos hum!
Saturday, May 12 at 7pm at Parse Seco
with live music by Daughter Dear and Esmé Olivia
and an interactive sound installation designed by Jamin Reyes, Sam Fischer, Brett Tomadin, and myself.

Don’t miss it!

In the Albuquerque Journal

Mental Illness In America

“Mental illness” is a tricky subject. We should have a better way of describing it, because for most the sickness is more than what’s inside their head and has to do with the environment we are all being raised in.

Perhaps “human actively trying to explore their humanity through the cataclysm of an oppressive capitalist regime” would make more sense.

Personally, I’ve never been diagnosed, mainly because the times I’ve went to therapy I asked for analysis without the diagnosis. I’ve also avoided prescription medications for fear they’d further distort my sense of reality, rather than add clarity.

All in all, I think I’ve lived long enough with my depression to recognize that it’ll come and go throughout my lifetime. Sometimes it’ll come with delusional thought processes and other times it’ll erode the ground beneath my decision making. At its worst, I’ll be so disoriented by these delusions that I won’t be able to trust the inside voice that I’ve been led to believe is my intuition.

Fortunately, the latter case hasn’t sprung up in almost 6 years, because I’ve found ways to live a life that feeds my spirit rather than crushes it.

There is a breaking point for every one of us. I see in my generation a lot of broken people coming out of their shells and rising up. Unlike our parents’ generation we have removed the stigma surrounding these alternative expressions of the human form. We have developed the vocabulary by which we can access more certain truths about how we process our emotions. We have become more heart centered and worry about the plights of others, while maintaining empathic approaches to one another. Surplus wealth and access to more relaxed lifestyles has allowed a whole generation of people to become more in touch with giving themselves the time to grow, rather than rushing blindly into the maelstrom.

At the same time, the generations before us that created the structures by which we are tortured are still living and still ruling. The idea that a career is more important than the people around you is still the status quo. The technologies that we use to communicate and set ourselves free have become the technologies that perpetuate the individual being more important than the species as a whole.

There are places of commerce where these hypocrisies run rampant. I’ve experienced it in the big cities of the northeast, and most recently witnessed it in the pseudo-paradises of California. With rising rent prices and everyone working 3-5 part time jobs just to make ends meet, it’s no wonder there’s no time for the personal to be explored.

You’ll see people drinking raw water, driving a Prius, and shopping locally, but when it comes to the lifestyle choices that actually make a person achieve personal happiness there is no time for it. And anyone who has found a way to live in their truth is automatically chastised and thrown out by the envy of others.

In a city, the idea of more personal wealth or a career advancement is always dangled just a few feet in front. People are not seen as people, but instead as rungs on ladder to climb in an ever growing network of status. All of this leads the person along into the prison they build for themselves. Whether it’s financial debts or a feeling of no longer having real positive connections with anyone around them, the prison cell is eventually locked and the key thrown away. Meanwhile the grass is always greener and the success that will make us so happy is always just out of reach.

Almost 6 years ago, I started meditating on abundance. It started with a simple penny meditation. Find a penny, shout “Abundance!”. Recognize that if something as simple as a penny could be abundant, then really abundance is everything. The breath I breathe. The flowers blooming in spring. The dreams I have when I sleep.

Abundance is not something we seek. It is the things we already have. And they are endless. We don’t need anything else. If the glass is already filled to the brim, we need not worry about attaining anything higher.

I only wish we lived in a system where this was the norm. Where this mentality could naturally be what everyone sees in themselves. I recognize my own privilege in being able to sometimes achieve it. I also recognize the power structures that are constantly taking away my clarity at being able to live it.

When capitalism is removed, we do not lose our drive to produce. Instead, what we produce becomes the things that are us truly living in our truth.

We are not mentally ill. We are being forced to delay our own evolution. And everything in our spirit wills us forward.

Mental Illness In America

Rocky Mountain High

(Written on 9/11/2016)

I’m familiar with Crow on every fence post, but it’s been a while since I’ve flown along his path. Soaring across the highway when we pass. The way the sky changes at sun down when it has more room to express itself. How Rocky Mountains are actually quite rocky when they begin to populate the horizon. Passing towns have signs like “historic” and “preserving the west” with pictures of cowboys and yet they’re only 100 years old. I begin to see sunsets followed by sunrises. Having completely fulfilling days.

Fox greets us at the first campsite. He stares nonplussed into the headlights waiting for us to make our move first. When we remain stunned he moves back to his lean-to stores. A pile of packaged meat, left by some wayward wanderer. Fox carries off ham, ribs, turkey wing, one at a time. His bushy tail sailing behind him especially pompous.

We decide on a campsite less occupied, a little further down the road. There’s a feeling of darkness in the night but we seem pretty much untouched by it. In the morning, Fox transformed back into his human form, comes and collects money for the campsite from us. He has a bit of a Southern drawl and is generally well-humored.

We see Coyote in the road. Several times. He’s snooping after Wild Turkey. Later on the trail, Wild Turkey leaves behind his tail feathers for us to gather. I find Hawk’s feather as well.

The trail to the pictoglyphs is still one of wonder. We drift through ruins, along canyons hundreds of feet deep, with bird faces and elder faces set in the stone.

Mule Deer comes and visits our camp in the morning. She realizes we’re friendly and invites her newborn fawn. And then her sister too. Turkey Vulture circles above. We wonder if she found Turkey for a meal.

The ancients visit our dreams. They visit our conscious conversations. We talk of existence and the story we all tell. We envision the effect of humanity on the ecosystem. We express intelligence is probably not humanoid, but rather a much larger system. Aren’t moons intelligent? Aren’t whole planets? If intelligence were to grow to its full potential, wouldn’t it want to go some place it couldn’t be found?

The landscape is serene. It is the definition of serenity. There’s some days where it’s even more pretty. But every day the sun sets and the sun rises in the most dazzling of colors.

Rocky Mountain High

Book Release Party

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On Wednesday, April 13th, The Random Tea Room & Curiosity Shop in Philly will be hosting me for the release of my new book, Travel By Haiku. Don’t miss it! There’s going to be all types performance and circus-like festivity. It’s going to be a real wonderful happening.

You can read more about Travel By Haiku on my website.

[RSVP to the event on Facebook]

Book Release Party

Excerpt fron Travel By Haiku

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“From sweet mountain spring
youth finds an entry point, and
restores our lifeforce.“

_____
Daily Haiku by Marshall Deerfield

Buy the new book, Travel By Haiku available from Amazon. Travel By Haiku is a collection of haiku poetry written while traveling across the United States in 2014-2015. Each haiku is a meditation on the divine beauty found in the natural world and a boost to get the reader there.

(source: marshalldeerfield.tumblr.com)

Excerpt fron Travel By Haiku