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Posts Tagged ‘Life’

It’s been so long since I’ve written anything. My writing chops have become stale, worm-eaten and moldy. Time to dust them off and write something, anything.

So:
The last two years have been uneventfully eventful; by which I mean a lot has happened in my life, a lot of changes, but nothing spectacular or particularly special. I have become a father and then a fiance and someday soon I will be a husband. To be sure that is not the normal route, but it’s not that unusual either. We talked about our relationship when we found out a little one was on the way, we wanted to make sure we were on the same page, we weren’t going to stay together just for the sake of the child. I mean how back-ass-wards would that have been? If we didn’t have any other reason to stay together than a child how horrible an example would we have set for my daughter? Especially as neither one of us mince words or is of a sparkling disposition. So we stuck together, intent on seeing where our relationship was going to go. Then the big news hit us, our daughter was probably going to be born with down syndrome and she would definitely be born with a heart defect that would require open heart surgery before her first birthday.

Yikes. Ouch. Ugh.

Time to bear down and prepare myself for a long life of disappointment, for all my expectations falling short and the fun of having children sucked out parenting. Big breath fella, man up, suck it up and soldier on, she’s still going to be your child, you’ll do what you have to.

Isabelle was born right on time, in the middle of the night, in the middle of winter. 

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I can feel it building, damming up in my head, ready to spill and thrill and destroy and, and, and… I was reading Bukowski today, probably not the best thing to be reading. He has a way of making a good day bad. Not the happiest of people but that is what makes him so compelling I think, here is somebody who has it worse than you, who can make your good day shit and you love him for it. Says something about you doesn’t it?

All these double letters in the middle of these words which are completely meaningless and what was I saying?

It happens sometimes, after a long period of no text, of a blank page and a full mind. It happens that all these thoughts build up and overflow into one-another. The girl I am fucking, the girl I used to fuck, the dog and her bad habits, the job I don’t have or the one I do. Till it becomes one big ball of dog-fuck-girl-job-fuck-etc. In my head and NOTHING makes any God Damned sense. She doesn’t like it when I say that; God Damn. It bothers her, as if God listened to me and would personally damn that which I condemn. As if I haven’t fallen out of His sight.

It’s spilling out of me now, into my fingertips and onto the page. A giant ball of damned thoughts and forgotten essays on the vulgarities of a meaningfully meaningless life. And if that makes any sense to you than you are worse off than I am and better for it too.

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Don’t really have anything to say, nothing meaningful. I just feel the need to write, to express in some way. The wind is gale force outside my window. It blows the world before it. It carries what is here far away and brings what was far, near. I am like this wind. I drift and carry with me all that I brought from the places I have been. I have left pieces of me in these far of places and brought new pieces with me. A patchwork man, a whole man made of small pieces. Fragments and pieces glued together with love and friendship, regret and loss, with all the things that make life what it is. I am a plaid man, a patchwork quilt of love and loss, of rage and regret, of family and friends; of memory, of experience. I am melancholy as I stand yet again at a crossroads and ask the same questions as before: Left? Or right? Only this time I think neither. I will walk straight, and let the pieces fall where they will. Or rather I will take the pieces with me as the wind does, gather new pieces and leave other pieces behind, as the wind does.

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One of his most vivid memories is of him and his half-brothers finding a dead deer and poking it’s eye with a stick until it popped.
“It was green…” He remembers.

All of his brothers are Half-brothers. His life is full of half remembered instances, stop stills of an unfinished film. Being dropped off with a grumpy old women and two or three of her other charges, her dirt lawn and harsh voice, the laughter of the other children. Being kicked out of elementary school because his best friend pissed on the door of a rival school.
“He had to go, he thought it would be funny. I don’t know why they kicked me out…”
He describes his school life as quiet and boring, he had friends but they weren’t close. He fell out of touch all together with the friend who just had to piss after he had moved to a different school 4 miles away. The first time he heard of his parents divorce,
“I was playing outside the house, no-one else was home and these two strange men came up the walk and took me away with them…”
Weekends with Dad and his four half-brothers, weekends with Mom and his two half-brothers.

He had a girlfriend at the end of high-school, he broke up with her. “why’d you beak up with her?” I ask him, never really expecting an answer.
“She was… (he nods his head as if confirming long held suspicions) … a bitch.”
Everything he says is slow like this, as though each word has to be turned one way then another, carefully inspected to be sure it is the right one. “Bitch” must have been the perfect description in his mind. During ‘lengthy’ speeches of say eight or more words, to include several sentences, he clears his throat often, as if to be sure we understand how much effort is required from him to talk. He doesn’t seem particularly unsure of what he is saying, nor insecure with saying it, just unsure he would like to speak at all. As if by letting these few stories leave his mouth they might leave him. They would no longer be his own life, his own private joke.

He moved out at the end of high-school, he and his girlfriend moved into a house together. It was cheap for them, his grandfather owned the place and charged a minimal amount, yet large enough to teach his grandson the economics of living. Soon after a friend of his from high-school moved in with them. The girlfriend and the friend did not get along.
“Why didn’t they get on?”
“He hated her… (shrugs) She was a bitch”
During these few years nothing much happened; he worked at warehouse, hung out with his half-brothers and his friend, his girlfriend became increasingly unhappy and he became dissatisfied with her. Their breakup was as placid and boring as their relationship. That was the only story he had to relate to me from this time in his life, the ‘breakup story’. They were at a grocery store getting necessities for the super-bowl party they were to attend at his half-brothers place. The argument was over the party, she didn’t want go. She wanted him to stay with her at home, he wanted to drop her off and go the party without her.
“…So she said ‘You just don’t want to be with me!’ and I told her she was right. The next day she moved all her stuff to the room next to mine.”
“She didn’t move out that night?”
“No, she stayed with me that night and when I came back the next night she had moved out.”
A month and a half latter he joined the Navy.

He has never lived what he would consider an interesting life. Every sentence ends with an ellipsis, every story he tells, the few I can get him to tell, is told with the same monotone. Still he is a happy and contented person. The kind of person for whom the most amazing thing he has ever seen has only elicited a small grunt of  appreciation. He is an interesting person though, if only because he is so quiet, so non-committal about life. Because of this, because he has so few stories to tell, the ones he does tell leave the listener wanting more, leave the hearer strangely effected, moved. You can feel the impact to his life that each event has had through the few words he lets grudgingly drop. These are the things that stick out the most in a life that is otherwise tapioca blandness. A few defining moments of childhood, confrontations of adolescents and decisions of adulthood. And when you think about it, that’s all any of us have. Sure we might have more to say, might even make some of it up, but when you strip it down, its just a bunch of bright spots in the film of our lives. The most defining moments of a man don’t have to be worthy of a novel, most would not even get a novella. Often the most defining thing about us will barely merit a sentence yet will carry all the force of a Pulitzer prize winner.

“It was green…”

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There was once a man who said,
“a man once said”
and that is what he said.

So then I say, a man once said; “You’re crazy. You know that don’t you?” A man once said, “I’m proud of you son.” and yet another man once said; “Your destined for great things.” and another, “You need to figure out your life, what you want to do with it; where to point it. You’re a good kid but your lost.” And once a man even said, “You are under arrest.” Then again one said “Good job.” and handed over a beer.
And I said, “There is this life before me, I don’t plan on dieing, so let’s go. There is a horizon and another valley after the next mountain, there is music and laughter and friends to be had and I’ll not waste my time living up to what a man once said. So let’s go.” A man once said that life was a precious gift and another responded by saying it was all pointless, “…all is dross.”
There is a story of what was said once, the first word to mankind, “live.” So then I shall.

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Twenty five
And the world
Seems no brighter
Neither darker.
Coming to grips
With self;
And the dawn is
The same as
Yesterday
In the land of
Ever summer,
But behind my
Eyes dawns a
New awareness.
These things I must
Leave, for a child
A child must be
But a man is
A man.

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Blink and the world is the same; your eyes close and reopen upon the same panorama. Fall asleep, enter the land of slumber and your brain takes over, rearranges thoughts and patterns feelings and impulses into unrecognizable dream shapes. But to see this dance upon our subconsciousness we must sacrifice ourself upon the alter of the pillow, for to dream we sleep. But what if this, my life my everyday being is just that? A waking, walking dream? It may very well be so, for I do not sleep.

But (to confuse matters) what if I am? Asleep that is; in a coma or the last seconds of living-dieing. I have lived a twice life then. One in slumber unable to move or speak, the other full and limitless. Or I have lived all of this before and what is now is the proverbial “life before the eyes” moment they all talk about. They, being the ones who worry over such things as the exact moment of death and postulate about lights at the end of tunnels and question whether or not there is a God or how many different past lives they’ve lived; They who spend their entire lives worrying about the end of it.

So then if this is such a moment, who then are all these people? Are they angelic players on the stage of my life? Or are they devils welcoming me into Hell? Will this be an accurate representation of all that I have done so that I may remember fondly or with chagrin all the things of my life? Or will this shortly become nightmare?

However when I step back from everything I feel as though I too am a player, a puppet with cut strings blindly stumbling from place to place seeking my own stage and fellow troupe. Feet dust covered and shoes tattered, stomach rumbling and sores forming; parched and wounded in heart and soul. Still my eyes seek the horizon and my nose points a direction. Forward yet, to seek my people, to seek my home.

“No Direction Home”. The title of a movie about a man who said, “We are all just travelers you know, seeking our way back home.” (Bob Dylan) So it is so. I am just a traveler, weary in the way of wayfarers and vagabonds; mud splattered and cut, yet still doggedly determined to find my stage and see the play through to the ending curtain. To take the last bow with my fellow troupe; final farewell to all you admiring fans and thanks for all the flowers.

As Shakespeare once said, “All the worlds a stage and we are but players on it.”

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