Awkward Reasons –

God may forgive sins, he said, but awkwardness has no forgiveness in heaven or earth.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
“Great endowments often announce themselves in youth in the form of singularity and awkwardness.” – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

There are reasons why at times my interactions with people seem strained. I say the wrong things. I limp through my social circles, everyone making way for my awkward presence. I bring up subjects deep and poignant. I provoke thoughts, thoughts you’re not accustomed to. I speak in a way you find odd. My accent tainted, not pure, not from any one place. The same with my mannerisms. I fidget with my hands in a crowd, unsure of how to hold them. I wonder if the way I’m standing is threatening. If a purse is left close to me, I walk away, believing you’ll accuse me if something is missing. Trying to drive with a thousand choices that are made instantly, provokes these social swerves that seem ungainly and make others uncomfortable. 

 
Do you know that this isn’t me? This isn’t how I am, constrained to behave oddly, chained to a limp of the soul and mind. Do you know I’m injured? Do you know I almost died because of love? Do you know I fought for my life many times, not from just physical beatings but mental torture and illness? Do you know that I’ve argued for my release from beatings given, many, many times?
 
Do you know how these scars make it hard to smile? The hardened skin refusing to release the joy struggling to stay alive in the poisonous atmosphere of my melancholic soul? Do you know the thousand thoughts I think just to go out the door? Checking my clothes, the color of my skin, the dark circles under my eyes, the length of my nose, the girth of my belly? Do you know that walking to my car creates anxiety? I grab my keys like a weapon; I make sure I always have a knife, though these things have never delivered me from violence or comforted me. Do you know that I struggle with violence a hundred times an hour? Not only my self-imposed violence toward me or others, but of the perceived violence I see directed at me in every face? 
 
Do you know that I always try to help others? Do you know though having been burned 99 times out of hundred, I still reach out, thinking that everyone believes I’m a sucker? Thinking that they all talk among themselves, working out plans to rob me of my time, energy, and money? Do you know that I know you are using me? Do you know that I still give in spite of this? There are reasons, stop and consider why.
 
Take time to realize that the people you know and see everyday are hurt and wounded. Look out from your struggle and know that a friend, a family member, a bartender, a cashier, is on their last thread of hope, wanting to die from the pain they feel. Reach out with compassion on those who irritate you, understand that the scars they bear make it difficult to respond with graciousness toward you and your problems. We are all in this together, make room in the survival raft for those drowning in despair. Act without requiring a suicide note or a midnight call from the police before you reach out…

Also published in Broowaha Magazine
First published in Opinionsofeye.com
02082012

Leave The Lion Alone –

“Without game, men prey on each other.” – Perry Farrell
“. . . It is just because human bloodthirstiness is such a primitive part of us 
that it is so hard to eradicate, especially when a fight or a hunt is promised as part of the fun.” – William James
sacred-profane

There are those who live only to stalk as an aggressor and taker of life. This is why the gazelle cannot be kind to the lion, or invite him to dine and frolic together. If I treat the predator like a friend, with all the trust and vulnerabilities involved with that privilege, I‘ll present myself as a meal. It’s nothing personal for them to hunt me, that’s what they do. Leave the lion alone, why do I wish to fight? A fight is necessary for survival, but the better part of wisdom is to stay away from those whose dinner is my flesh. The kindness of our hearts is a weakness which must be balanced with the necessary facts of life, leave the lion alone and steer clear from the jaws that will look pleasant from a distance but have your throat in an instant.

First published in Opinionsofeye.com

12162012

No Fear –

“Bran thought about it. ‘Can a man still be brave if he’s afraid?’
‘That is the only time a man can be brave,’ his father told him.”
George R.R. Martin, A Game of Thrones 
Noctturnalromance

 

Walking towards the house, I just finished spending another evening with my church youth group. On the way something sinister stirred in the shadows. No sound, just glimpses of dark figures, darker than black, accompanied by a deep foreboding fear. Forcing myself along the path, all my nerves on end, I scramble to find a weapon worthy of this opponent. My fists were no match, guns likewise. I needed something without form to battle the unseen opponent. Words, that will do, they have no shape and find you even when your hiding. I’ve got the weapon, now which words? The pastors taught me words exist that are extraordinary, having more weight and value than common words, words that were in themselves different. The most powerful of these are the words that looked ordinary, but are changed by my belief about the source and effectiveness of them, i.e. they gained value in this battle by virtue of the faith I placed in them. It wasn’t that faith did it, because I had to actually use the words, but it was faith that gave them the edge to cut the dark. I read this somewhere, “You light a lamp for me. The Lord, my God, lights up my darkness.” Repeating this I tried to understand how to fight the fight that is not fought with fists but with belief. I believed that Big Daddy (that’s what I called God) let me find those words as advice. Fear has torment and I was always afraid, so this whole thing was a training ground to overcome fear and learn how to fight what is called by others as “the good fight”. The victory to press past this feeling and not turn around and run, was not a gallant one at all, it was horribly clumsy and vacillated between wanting to run and wanting to face this fear. All said and done, I made it through, I didn’t die and I learned a valuable lesson that equipped me for the rest of the craziness called my life.
Also published in Opinionsofeye.com

Forensic Analysis –

“If suffering like hers had any use, she reasoned, it was not to the sufferer. The only way that an individual’s pain gained meaning was through its communication to others.”  ― Diane Wood Middlebrook, Anne Sexton: A Biography 

floweerheaad

 

I reach through the fodder of my mental plane wreck, grasping, trying to make sense of it. Like a forensic crash analyst, I picked up pieces of my shattered self and held them up to the light, turning them over and over looking for reasons of the devastation. Is it operator error? Did the machine break? Was it an act of God? Did someone fail to address issues that led to this? These questions are valid even when looking at my human psyche, and to that end I believe that all apply. I made mistakes, very big mistakes, and even if I were normal and my mind healthy, mistakes would still happen. Yes, the machine is broken, it’s totally fucking obvious to anyone who knows me for any length of time that I’m fucked up in the head, that shit ain’t right with this guy. People contributed to this trashing of my soul: abuse, neglect, rape, bullied, rejected, abandoned, violent brutal attacks on my body and mind, yep, all done by others. The sad thing’s not that these happened, ’cause shit happens to everyone, but that, like in movies when they dunk the guy underwater then before he can take a breath he is shoved underwater again, it’s the frequency of the shit that keeps hitting my fan. I’ll barely have a hold on my PTSD and I’ll be attacked violently, or someone will violate my space by stealing from me, betraying me, or whatever. It happens over and over again. What in the hell is God trying to show me? What fucking possible good can there come of my constant devastation? I’ve held on this long because I’m so concerned about taking the next breath that I can barely see beyond right now, in fact, dreams of the future are gone, if they ever were there. I only remember one dream, that of being a veterinarian. It was shot to hell very quickly as I got bullied and fucked with, even by teachers and adults. So that’s it, I was given one dream, it’s gone, so fuck me, all I have to look forward to is catching my breath the next time life pulls my head out from under the water. OK, wait, some self righteous asshole from the back says, “You carry yourself like a victim, that’s why you keep getting attacked.” Oh, fuck me, is that the answer? It’s my fault? Hell, well now I’m all better, thanks. This is not a whining rant where I want people to feel sorry for me, its mainly a way of examining the evidence and helping me toward recovery from all this shit. I don’t want advice, I just want to fucking yell at the trees and mountains ’til I’ve exhausted all my homicidal and suicidal screams, ’til I’ve cried all my tears and I can’t cry anymore, scream and scream until I break down and stop fighting against life. I’ve survived what would have killed most people, I’m still holding on to shreds of sanity and empathy that many would have lost by now. I’ll be OK, and perhaps somehow, I’ll find out how to piece this shit back together, but I seriously doubt it will ever fly again.
Also published in Broowaha
Also published in Opinionsofeye.com

 

Muddy Water

“Muddy water, let stand, becomes clear.”― Lao Tzu

shittypanty

I watched the muddy waters gather together in a dance of spinning debris, a mix of delights and sorrows, flotsam on turbulence pouring itself over the edge, disappearing beneath the ground, never a clue as to where it went. My face broke free from the brackish murk, gasping and gulping, air and water mixing on the palette of my soul. I’m not a fish, nor am I entirely comfortable on land, perhaps I’m an amphibian. I can switch to one or the other, and it sufficiently explains my dichotomy. When I am forced by circumstances, or emotional upheaval, to commit to one side or the other, it presents a challenge. Life is a flight or fight response for me, and continues to be in this hyper vigilant state. This is the ride I live on, my emotions are the tracks, which I leave on more than a few occasions, and I spin on waters of joy and depression, disappearing into the voids of social experience, gasping to say a few final words, does anyone hear me?

Mortal Dance – Engage the Pack

“What we think of as our sensitivity is only the higher evolution of terror in poor dumb beasts. We suffer for nothing. Our own death wish is our only real tragedy.” – Mario Puzo
itsraininguniverse
As I listen, my music carrying me away, I feel death circling. A thousand shards of ice sharp pain brings me its gifts of gray emotion. Inevitably sunrise comes, in spite of my night loving wishes. A blank stare possesses my eyes, and life leaves. Can I be dead and alive at the same time? Is this what’s wrong? Am I trying to move rigor mortised limbs? If feelings are dead, is the blood running warm and blue any life at all? It’s like nothing matters when you look over that edge. I want to peek, to glimpse at what’s beyond. Is this what predators sense? That I flirt with death and sleep restlessly for want of it? They surround my camp with fire lit eyes. I see them jumping, ducking in and out of the light, playing with me, afraid to rush in too quick. One tugs at me, yanking my leg to see if I move. I gasp, pushing away the comfort of mortality to engage the pack. It’s the fight that brings me back to life. Until then there’s no reason, but when the enemies come, that, that is why I live, only to fight. Men have ruined everything else in my life but this I control. When it’s time, I will bring death to myself, no one else will take that privilege.

My Small Things – Protect your dreams

“Yes: I am a dreamer. For a dreamer is one who can only find his way by moonlight, and his punishment is that he sees the dawn before the rest of the world.” 

 

My small things I protect from harm
If I lost them, I’d lose my charm.
I have all I’m going to be,
All contained within their deep sea.
Their not fragile, a well known fact.
If you shake them, they’ll fight back.
Strange they have a life of their own.
When I give them my faith, my power on loan.
The return for me is great,
A small price to accommodate.
They are small but it seems
Everyone cherishes their dreams.
02202011