March 4, 2018 § Leave a comment
Sat down at the bar. The only empty stool was at the far end next to the servers’ station. The management had iconized the word “focus” onto the screen saver so if I turned my head and looked down the exposed brickwork I could follow the slowly bouncing subtle push of the once-called suits (now more likely bearded and tattooed thirty-somethings). The way the word caromed off the sides of the 15 inch screen reminded me of the classic black and white Pong.
Hanging from the low ceiling a few feet from my head a long row of tulip glasses lined toward the the crowded street out front where I’d walked in about an hour ago. The bar was almost empty now (the Happy Hour rush gone). As soon as I noticed the upside down tulips I saw my mother. We were talking about something she was excited about. Not remembering what the excitement was about makes me nostalgic in the sense that I see my little kid self and my mother still alive. How would the present be different if she had seen me live older than she did? I want to know why she had forgotten my age while we were talking and she realized I wasn’t old enough to be at a bar and said, You know how the glasses hang upside down at the bar right by your head? I didn’t. I do now, though. My mother’s story ended there.
Maybe she was about to make a joke. Probably not. I don’t remember her ever making me laugh. I was a taciturn kid. My brother’s the jokester. Even now with multiple visits to the dialysis center the nurses can’t believe how everything is a joke with him. Amputations, cancer, diabetes. Life is meant be enjoyed no matter what, he’d say.
Doesn’t really matter what my mother was thinking all those years ago. I remember it now. Don’t even remember what she was wearing or where we were. I don’t know how old I was or if I had had a good or bad day. She was excited is all that matters as I wait for my “small plate” to come to the counter. The imprinted feeling of I hope you are okay if heaven exists. If it doesn’t I hope you felt how much I loved you even though we didn’t talk much after a certain age. After melody and harmony, sex, & victimized assumption crept in and took over. I know that a few more years would have lifted us to a blissful place, but I know now (as I feel you did ‘Ama) that we don’t decide these things. That thinking that we have control of our lives is a lie. We make choices, yes. Other’s are made for us and we have no say. And that’s okay. I don’t need goals or set levels of societal norms to feel alive, be happy, enjoy this improvised flow we call living.
Just like sitting here now: wasn’t planned. Had an appointment so I came early to fight traffic a bit. Once here my phone told me the appointment was next Thursday the 8th not today the 1st. A few years ago I would have walked up ready and someone would have apologetically said something like, Sorry Sir you are expected a week from now, and then I’d of walked off embarrassed probably. I had no control over why I got my dates confused. I could have checked my phone before leaving instead of leaving early. That didn’t happen. This did. I’m here now.
And everything turned out okay, didn’t it?
December 5, 2017 § Leave a comment
Everything follows me. Sit down and the landscaper’s blower buzzes as rake-against-concrete scratches add a nails-on-chalkboard backtrack.
At another bench the loudspeaker from a high school across the street echoes a band director’s directions to brass, then to percussion: “Take it from G to I—cut, cut, cut! Come on lift your heads. You wanna be heard, don’t you?”
Paranoid? When all sound and movement attracts my attention, maybe. Gestures and mannerisms. Lane changes without a signal or amateur semaphore attract the orange reflecting same. Focused. A discriminate eye sees madness’s divinity Dickinson says. I see it.
Being is a magnet. Sound. People’s intimately subtle movements. Silence. How the clouds hide the sun and my skin feels the cold instantaneous like an ant crawling quickly across my slippery hand towards a much rougher finger tip. Looks like time lapse footage. Everything follows.
Feeling alive. One with it all collides with the routine everyday. The smell of ashes from old cigarettes turns to a passionate conversation before white sheets and sex.
Nothing ordinary, only the miracle of existence, the fascination with being alive oozing onto the wooden counter, shouting in silence for no one and all. Hear the ticking of the end. The countdown to being. The slowing to the next. Listen to Miles’ trumpet muffled from the other side, wading.
It still follows me, lowering into a minor sixth as night cools to 43 degrees, the water 6/8 warmer as fish jump out, lifting tiny white water splashes back to 3/4 double time.
August 14, 2017 § Leave a comment
as the orthodoxy spews and preaches its decades old knowledge I go back to the instinctual. the infamous “they” ask me to put on a tie and coat I amble unshaven in shorts to where I want to go, huaraches slapping on concrete.
I just look and stare, take the pills they prescribe: “you’ll feel better.” nights of pain and thoughts of suicide scare me awake. on my back adjusting to darkness and slivered light and moon shadows, then deep appreciation of what I have lived. sitting up, legs dangling into black I hear Rosie breathing, Tristan gaming, Aidan studying a film. I see Jonas reading trends as they spike and drop in his office, the glare off the laptop onto his face reflecting on his glasses in reds and green blips.
before long I think back to childhood, music, words, movies. back to unorthodoxy. herbs and shaman cure scenes, charms and salves, teas from British bands and coffee wraps tight on my feet as a shivering fever kept me awake like now. My mother always there, sitting in the dark. I always got better. placebo or not, I always got better. I will get better again. It is in my story, my tri-cultural build, my homegrown optimism, my being. it’s who I tell myself I am. & until this fragile shell returns to it’s mysterious beginnings I will keep it up and not give in.
April 30, 2017 § Leave a comment
The joys of Sunday are like Wednesday for some. Monday for others. The joy of Sunday.
Every other day’s the same. Sun up moon down. Arguments and loving words none. Or some days words again: one and arguments are none. The joys of Sunday.
Is it the coolness of the evening or the sweating Tuesdays as the dew builds between your legs? The joy of Sunday’s all the same to Thursday or Saturday. The joys of Sunday stays the same.
Tamarind, strawberries or coconut milk sweet. Plastic wrappers and the thin thin wood stick. The joys of Sunday.
February 2, 2017 § Leave a comment
woke up with crumbs. from Felicitas, the holidays, yesterday’s bbq, Rosie. scattered everywhere between Star Wars sheets, the pieces hard rock, tiny granulated feelings. how long between cotton, silk, heavy and feathery warmth and sweat. how long?
handcuffed by a dream to let go. afraid of everything and nothing. posturing for help. left ambiguous, alone in the sand. granulated rock again. crumbs scattered by time, wind, pain and guilt hidden by small talk and the same stories told over and over, blanketing nostalgia suffocating any true feelings. so long ago.
&, still, all that’s left are crumbs. translation lost in the murmurings. the tiny murusas speaking in tongues back to Tayoltita, Tijuana, black and white memories walking in stripes, her hand ’round my back, her secret signal whistling as we look straight ahead, a seer and apprentice through tiny modulated pieces.
November 27, 2016 § Leave a comment
Giants fight, swinging at clouds.
Molecular holes pierce through blue
body punches and upper cuts at once.
What sounds will wince as cars and buses,
under the weight of falling body.
Underground words by rail or chant
cross country to protectors and
protesters, Shaman and trickster.
Wizarding worlds of fictitious futures
stuck in their past, unable to remain in
the present for more than a soundbite.
This is the what is of now we see,
the way of social solitude and global
individualism, as we all share alone.
October 8, 2016 § Leave a comment
Can’t sleep sometimes. Maelstrom thoughts. Breathe. Darkness to a tiny glob of light sliding down my chest. From my toes up to my legs, back up. Left shoulder, right. Still can’t sleep. 3 or 6 more times.
20 minutes later I get up and walk outside. A beautiful early morning darkness. Stars lined-up, pointing to eternity. Constellation to constellation. Ancient Greek heroines and magical beasts pose and charge. Their breath touches me. The coolness tickles my skin.
Breathe. Walk under the ficus, listen to the music of quietest day when most are still asleep. Maybe not. Maybe they can’t sleep, either. The lock has opened. Another deep breath: deeper.
Go back inside. Something woke you, brought you back from restlessness. Back to now. Back to being. Back to living life.