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april 2004

There9:01am friday, 30th april
I imagine snow
descending like a thousand memories.
There are places to go
when I just shut my eyes
and pretend that the world
is just another dream. There are
rivers I have walked along
coursing with the freedom
of having no destination at all.
I have seen the moon
pass through all its phases
in a single hour, as if
winking at me one slow wink, as if
it knew something about me
that I would never guess.
I imagine stars
shooting like it was the end of the world
every evening, and a dawn
like the first day of creation.
I have found myself
there, a dozen times again,
and each time, I have been
someone new, like an old friend
I hadn't seen in a long, long time.
But my eyes must open, I think,
for it is not a dream, this life:
and there is beauty here
that I could have never imagined,
not if I had had an eternity and a half.

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Great Why8:59am thursday, 29th april
I wonder sometimes at the great why behind it all. No, it is not that I believe I can truly understand even the scope of the mystery behind all mysteries, but I cannot help it at times to wonder the Einsteinian conceit: to know the mind of God. Of course, he (Albert) was thinking on mathematical terms, so I am not approaching things in that manner; I like words, instead. I keep coming back to one, when I think on such depths of thought, one that has always haunted me, one that no one can explain, yet everyone knows what he talks about. I mean, love. And sometimes, I think it is the explanation to everything, three words I pluck from the Bible, containing that one mysterious concept. Those would be, "God is love". Then, however, I realize I don't know what I'm talking about at all. Even my comprehension of the word "is" is shaky.

Or is it, really, that there is no real, grand why? That the question itself is faulty? Like asking who controls the foraging of all the ants in a particular colony, where it has been shown that it is no one ant at all? (It is actually the local interaction between ants that causes an emergent overall organization, by the by.) Perhaps it is so that I wonder at nothing, and think thoughts that make no sense at all. Perhaps the meaning of life is like that, that there is no one answer out there that people have missed these thousands of years, but all these little ones that make sense of life to a person, each his thousand answers. Maybe, too, it is experiential: life is not contained in questions, but in its living. I wonder at the great why behind it all, and my mind goes in circles, then I realize that I know enough to keep on, to do right.... And maybe it is all love, after all.

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Pain8:12am tuesday, 27th april
Pain. There are a lot of things you can say about it. I think there are times that it is the thing that moves me most efficiently, an economy of motivation to move perhaps toward or away from something. I remember being so afraid of it in my youth, that death was preferable to torture. I did not understand how one could put up with any significant amount of it. Of course, that was before I had felt it to any real degree, only some bruises and a broken heart that I could reference as any suffering at all — perhaps it was partly the unknown I feared. After I paid some dues, I understood it a little more. I'm still not a big fan of it, but I see how pain has helped me through my experience, how being toppled from my self positioned pedestal and being dragged through the briars has made me more... human. Less calculating, more empathic. I don't know if you have found such purpose for it, but pain: this was a teacher of mine, too.
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Ethereal5:23am monday, 26th april
I have been haunted by ghosts of people that never were,
wondering I whose dreams I have been dreaming, for these are not mine.
Everybody else seems to know who I am, all except me.

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Much Forgotten9:31am saturday, 24th april
I imagine there is much that is forgotten. Look at how the archaeologists scramble to preserve every little scrap of the past they find: they know how much of the past is beyond recovery, how much has vanished with the shifting of the sands. I imagine the denizens of those thousands of years ago did not find the items now treasured so precious. It was just stuff to them, and there was a lot of it. It makes you wonder how much of the stuff of these days will one day be treasure, in many thousands of years: how much of what we throw away without a second look will tell about us to they who would look into the past and wonder why? True, we write down much of what occurs, but in my thinking, they in the far future shall wonder (as we do, sometimes) what really happened here.

In your own life, in your personal happenings, there is much there that we dismiss. There is that notion that every little thing that happens to us affects us in some small way, but usually, the marks that are left are very little indicative of the things that made them. We find many of the things that occur boring, or routine, not worth the bother to store in long term portion of our cerebral cortex. We forget, and never wonder why these things ever were, whether the little happenings ever tipped the scales on some emotion or decision without our realizing, why we should ever care about them at all. But what small things keep you safe, keep you sane, keep you going? I bet you don't know; I bet the best we can do is remember that we forgot, a million little things never considered.

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Furious Dreaming9:08am friday, 23rd april
Then there are days of furious dreaming. Instances few, but when they happen, magic: when anything seems possible, when you are high on just being alive, when it all seems worth it. Hope, not merely a faint candle, but a thousand watt spotlight shining upon all you do — you are undefeatable, you are golden, you are wonder. Function as you will, because for these brief moments, your mistakes are insignificant to the right you make in this universe.... I do not know what brings these on, and I do not ask where they go when they fade. The minutes are sufficient unto themselves; I desire not for their prolonged stay, as they taste all the sweeter after a long, hard journey has earned them. It is as if you are given the taste of true justice. As if someone up there likes you.
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Another World8:57am thursday, 22nd april
Can you imagine another world?
There have been saints
who looked through the veil of being
and saw into the unseen;
there have been artists who
peered within themselves
and saw somewhere else, out of
mind, out of space, a timeless
dream. There are others, too,
not so holy, not so gifted,
who venture from this land of solidity
through the mists, into an elsewhere
they cannot comprehend,
who become lost in such places.
There are those who dive
deep within themselves, plucking
pearls from the inner waters,
and there are those who
drown. I think, though, one
may become like the other:
he who travels so far within
may one day come to misadventure,
where there sometimes
monsters are; and then there are
those, few I think these be,
who suddenly, kicking and thrashing
in the oceans of himself, who
learn somehow to swim.
Methinks if you find yourself sinking,
pump those legs, swing those arms:
you may surprise yourself
what you can do, where you may go.

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Unnamable8:48am tuesday, 20th april
What is that unnamable desire? When I want what is most probably impossible? I can't even tell if it can exist, that thing I crave: and I have no idea what can satiate me. It is that feeling that you want to fly and fall at the same time, something, anything but just sit there and type, anything but the ordinary world you have fought so hard to get back into.... It passes, though — it is a fleeting desire, something that seizes you for the second and then vanishes, leaving you a little strange. And then, I don't want to know. I don't want to know what weirdness it is that some subterranean neuron has fired in my belly's lust. I just want to forget that I did so desire, like I have put so much of my past to rest, go on with life, go on with normality, go on, keep on.

Of course, it is hard to forget the feeling. Curious, I wonder what the root of this desire may be. Drugs? Sex? Madness? Combinations of two of these, or all three? There is a bunch of stuff I have given up to be able to sustain my sanity, and my reckoning is that these lacks conspire with one another and make me want some strange substance — one that does not rightly exist in the form that I want it. But so what? Who doesn't want the impossible, at times? We should not expect to receive it: that is the lesson I need to learn from these cravings. Let them fade, for they will. I will get used to the life I have built for myself, used to these walls, used to this soul that have shoveled out and planted. I will survive.

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In the Quiet8:41am monday, 19th april
In the quiet I have heard about the end of the world. Someone told me it already happened, and this is all but a dream. In the quiet, in the dark, there grow things that have never seen the visible light, subsisting on the mushrooms that grow underneath our deepest fantasies. In the quiet, I have seen all the way around the universe: it requires a steady eye, and the ability to wash through illusion. In the quiet, I became as a child, with an imagination that could make of nothing an entire land — though the things had changed that I thought of — stranger from back then. In the quiet, I have heard the footsteps of Death, though he always walks by, not stopping to rest, never saying hello. Hm. I don't know what I would do if he did say anything to me. In the quiet, there are things we never speak, no — not anymore, not anymore.
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Parentheses8:57am saturday, 17th april
(ashes to ashes, dust to dust, but in between is life)
(days where time somehow pours out of the precious into the pointless)
(funny how less the immortal we get as we grow older)

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Dazzle8:53am friday, 16th april
I have to remember we are all people, imperfect, sometimes ugly people. Some of us have better façades than others, however. I see it sometimes, when I watch TV, some late night talk show: some of us have Personality (capitalization intended). I don't know, is it just a front? If it is, some of these masks seem bulletproof. They can take anything. Try to heckle such a person and you're the one that will end up looking like the fool, even though you're shielded by a whole crowd and he's up there standing alone. And there's also those who have such a Personality in print. They clothe themselves in the word so richly that you imagine them to be something like a walking stack of ornately engraved encyclopedias. Some people are like that, and I have to remind myself: they're just people. Just like you, just like me. They can break, too.

Of course, seeing that they're human doesn't make me any less jealous of them (at times). Or just being in awe of them, what they can do with a crowd, or to a camera, or a microphone. I dunno. There is, too, this rare case, and I don't even know if I've really seen it: where the person has It, yet they don't seem to know that they do. They can Wow people, but they seem not to be cognizant of it. Maybe it's at the beginning of their careers, before everyone they meet tells them they're fabulous. Maybe it's just a part of their act, just another element in the equation. But there are some people who are On with such a sincerity that they hypnotize me. They are so earnest, so real; I am truly humbled by such a being. Like I said, it may all be fake, but I'd like to believe otherwise — that there are some people out there who still value humility. And I know: they, too, are imperfect. But there is something about them that makes me forget that, just for a time, and I can believe in the dazzle, such light.

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Certainty9:08am thursday, 15th april
We go through it all and we are never sure, never sure of anything. I can see why some minds can't take this; I can see why my own mind couldn't take it; we couldn't take the uncertainty, we buckle at the stress of the thousand unknowns. There is a set of working knowledge all sane people have, but these things are not certainty: that our family will be with us, that our friends will not abandon us, that we succeed in the stages of our educational and social development. We who become mad trade these meager attempts at absolutes with grand ruminations that we "know" to be truer, realer, surer than anything else we knew previous. We know great things.... It is strange to give them up again: get back to the mundane absolutes of a regular life. We go through life and we are never sure, for in that certainty madness lies — better faith that never knows but that it can question what is true.
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Not Doom8:47am tuesday, 13th april
Doom for me was sometimes
in the barest whisper
of a sound. It was
in a subtle shading of a window,
it was sometimes
nothing at all, pure imagination —
doom came, and came,
and came, and it
always turned out to be nothing.
After the rush of fear,
I was left with the relief
that all needed do was pray,
or less, just sit still and wait,
and my end, my finality,
my death: it would
pass on by like so much
dust blown in my face....
I know that one day it will be
the ending of all my days,
but I think it comes
not like what it was
back when the storm
crackled on in my inner visions.
I think it comes like
a tide over a sandcastle:
slowly, until, as it lies there,
the tippy top is submerged,
and the sand settles down
back into the sea, the source,
from which all life once began.

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To Be Saved8:57am monday, 12th april
In the desperate rush to save oneself, what — and whom — do we forget? On the road to saving our soul, do we accidentally sell it? Thinking we are doing the best, sometimes we wreak the worst... but I think it is better to make the mistake than to constantly be of inaction. No, it is not always better to act, and sometimes, it is the silent who is wise, but I would rather that I tried and failed rather than fail for lack of trying. Even we who lose our souls: I say there is hope to he who still attempts, who still struggles toward what he believes is right. Look at the thief crucified besides the Christ: it is only to he throughout the whole of the Book who is guaranteed salvation. Of course, there is the point that stupidity looks very like righteousness at times, but I do not say to turn your back on your past errors. Try. Fail. Learn. Try again.

If you have sold your soul, did you know it is not the end? There are myths on top of the myth of the contract with the Devil. Angels (and sometimes Mother Mary herself) have been known to dive into the depths of Hell and retrieve the very signature rendered unto the unholy. Being a Christian, I know I am given to self-righteousness perhaps more than the casual observer; I must remind myself that I more than he who does not believe sent my Lord to the cross. But I must try as I can to do what is right. And I must also remind myself of this one thing; if you are a Christian, perhaps this will resound with you, too: when our Lord Jesus Christ was being nailed to the cross, and He called out to His Father, "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do!", we must comprehend that He was talking about all of us.

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Free the Horses6:09am saturday, 10th april
Free the horses. Release the doves. Do not sit still, for there is a world happening around you. I once sheltered myself from all experience, yet still could not escape any of my fortunes, and still, time kept on. I know that even though you may run as fast as you are able, the world will yet speed on by, but what sights you will see along the way. For there are many degrees of freedom, and some are not freedom at all, but some rote movement that is more a prison than bars of steel. No one is as free as he can be. And it may be wise to follow your heart, but sometimes, if you chase after dreams with all your might, sometimes, your heart will follow you. If you have no dreams at all, take a look back to when you were a child, for every child desires something in his heart. Remember just what that was like, and perhaps something will come to you.... This now was brought to you by a kindred spirit. Free the horses. Release the doves.
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Course5:54am friday, 9th april
Where I begin, there is no footing, and I grasp at air.
The middle is crowded with thorns, and with impassable thickets.
I end to find only that I must begin again: so I do.

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Sense9:02am thursday, 8th april
What happens when it's all normal? What happens when it makes sense because it makes no sense? I think many of us have gotten a little too used to the news. I think we are used to not getting the point, used to letting it slide on by without really looking at it, used to the drivel that those higher up spew, used to lies everywhere. When did the virginity of our eyes get punctured, so that everything could get in without a second thought? When did it become that something had to be so utterly bizarre to get our attention? Or in the other direction, when did it become so that a simple thing like an honest man become such a rare quantity worthy of our complete and undivided attention? Were we ever children, or were we born cynical, and had those former memories pumped in?

When was it when we stopped dreaming of a better world? Or are there some of you still out there who do? Are you a myth or what, you dreamers? A lot of us start out idealistic, then something happens along the way: there is this thing out there that overtakes us, chews us up until all that's left is a creature of forced practicality, of inspirationless desire. I dunno. It might just be when you start having to pay the bills, it's not fun and games anymore. Money suddenly is not a toy, and time is that thing that you have too much of in all the wrong places, and not enough where you want it. And so, what happens when it's all routine? What happens when the senseless is our logic? Myself, I don't think I'll ever get used to it: that's one of those "curse that's a blessing" type of deals.

Every once in a while, I have to kick myself in the ass. Not only because I deserve it, but because if I don't, I start blending into the wallpaper. I tell myself, the only difference between me and them is that I know I'm an idiot. And that's the only difference. Yeah.

That, and I pray. Couldn't hurt.

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Thought8:50am tuesday, 6th april
Thought is the enemy. It is that which lies quiet, that which goes unseen which is of most danger. We only worry for our souls when our deeds become as like our thoughts, kept only to ourselves, in the corners, in the shadows, unspoken. My own thoughts lead me astray, though not quite as much as they once did. For brief moments I believe that I am a prophet, or some such fantasy that I am contesting with evil forces within my mind's eye — the sensation passes, though. I have not had enough, I think, not enough of the higher aspirations: love, hope, honor, faith; I have been too busy climbing out of the pit — slowly, slipping as I go. The stench of the pit I carry up, here to the daylight world... my thoughts are still strange.... These are my thoughts on my thoughts: welcome: perhaps if I let you look in, the darkness will not be so dark, after all.
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Time7:50am monday, 5th april
Time is that wind
that wears away our youth like
so much sand ground down,
that wind
that carries us away
and we do not know how
we have arrived
at the places we call home.
Time is that water
that we drink of without thought,
until we find
no more drops left
in the fountain, and we
dry up like so many leaves.
Time is that flame
that drives us on, on,
that heats our passions,
makes us stretch
our desires so the heat
can blaze out,
catch as much of the world
on fire as we may touch.
Time is that soil
within which we plant
seeds of our hope,
tend it with all the elements,
one day to rest, finally,
within its terminal womb,
like so many hopes
laid to rest in the quiet
of its cool darkness. Time,
I do not know if you will remember:
I was that child who
didn't believe you existed.

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Recollection 169:09am saturday, 3rd april
I once thought I could create a universe, a multiverse, an omniverse. As if it were as simple as stitching together a fabric or two, as if it could be done as easily as constructing a paragraph. I was going to build my own world: such was my great madness. I imagined I had some hidden power, that if I were to do the right thing to unlock the secret chambers of my spirit, I would have such energy that I could destroy and create the galaxies. For some reason, too, I believed I had sentience beyond all normal comprehension, that I had some supra genius uncountable with normal measures. I think back upon that time and two things strike me: how utterly believable it seemed to me then, and how incredibly stupid the thoughts seem to me now. We all believe to some degree what we want to believe, but mine own conjectures had no rational boundaries by which they were limited: I believed it all.

Of course, the "all" I believed was everything that came from my own mind; anything anyone else told me were just nonsense coming from mere mortals. My state back when: I had such power in my own mind, but in the outside world, how utterly helpless I was. Once I broke free of the shackles of matter, I told myself, I would have energy beyond energy, and I would make of the earth, EUTOPIA; I would bring back all of the dead, and I would make of everyone an immortal; there would be now more sorrow, and no more pain, and we all would be as gods. Delusions of such grandeur. I wonder, now, if any of it still remains, if my current ambitions reach too far. I ask, for what am I made? If it be that I was made as a common man, for a common life, this I must accept. Whatever else, I must not let the madness creep back in, however it may disguise myself: better the mundane, if it be true.

I look at van Gogh's Starry Night and think to myself, if I can make one such work as worthy as this, then I would be satisfied for the whole of my life. But maybe it is not for me ever to be so, ever to be satisfied; I spent too much time idling — perhaps it is only meant for me to struggle, to reach, even if I never can quite get there.

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Dream Life5:19am friday, 2nd april
In this dream life I wander so far that distance no longer has any meaning. Something about my being tells me that it is not real, none of it; no, not a deception, not an illusion, just that this is a place where I do not belong. I wonder what the place must be like where I do fit in, what pie in the sky could build such a eutopia. I am afloat in my own soul, no firm footing anywhere, drifting to and fro from wherever I situate myself. In this dream life I run and run and run just to get back to where I started, and the faster I run, the quicker that time passes. Yes, getting nowhere fast. I imagine that there are others who see the world pass like me, strangers to all the days and nights: let us all have a staring contest, but not against each other. Let's look upon the world with eyes that do not move, and see how long it takes for the world to blink.
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Distances5:38am thursday, 1st april
There is much distance in our lives, much the space between things.
If all our distances filled a volume, how much the emptiness?
And if there were no distances, how little would our lives fill?

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