3 hour countdown

got home
ate
slept
an easy
4-5 hours
so I’m awake
now
knowing
I’ll have
to get
up at 6
just 3 hours away
not minding
not minding the
new job
mostly liking it
keeping
fingers crossed
writing faster
writing more
feeling
on top of it

keep taking stabs

tattered up book
and notebook
carried along
in bag
I grab for them
to make
use of them
as often
as possible
throughout the
day
to take shelter
from mainstream
radio trying
to tell me
exactly what
to think
to take shelter
of the idea
that there
is an inner
self
waiting to
speak up

I cover the
page in ink
try to get through
to what is
really
on my mind

I see myself
I see
this idea
is solid
an inner
person
older
wiser

I’m glad I have more going on right now. it helps put things in perspective that these current problems are actually quite petty and there’s so much going on in the world that demands a more serious participation. what is that supposed to mean? it means for now, I’m distracted, cooled down. it will get worse again, but it’s funny, I suspect I will face it with a smirk, or even bust out laughing. I will report on this as it happens, like a good news caster, dedicated. a writer should be like that, writing a hell of a lot, small thoughts, waiting for the big thoughts. writing out the arguments, getting pissed, getting calm. the page should be full of ink with little blank untouched spaces left. sell these in galleries like people buy from farmer’s markets. I think I will bust out laughing. I think about strength all the time, and how to apply it. it is always put to the test. if someone disagrees with you, be strong enough to hear it – you don’t have to flip out and “retaliate” because someone sees something differently.

the flower
opens up
slowly
takes
its time

on death sentences

“There is the sentence, and the whole awful torture lies in the fact that there is certainly no escape, and there is no torture in the world more terrible. You may lead a soldier out and set him facing the cannon in battle and fire at him and he’ll still hope; but read a sentence of certain death over that same soldier, and he will go out of his mind or burst into tears. Who can tell whether human nature is able to bear this without madness? Why this hideous, useless, unnecessary outrage? Perhaps there is some man who has been sentenced to death, been exposed to this torture and has then been told ‘you can go, you are pardoned.’ Perhaps such a man could tell us.” – Dostoevsky, The Idiot (pg. 21)

note

I’ve been busy with the new job; started yesterday. also went to a poetry slam, won second prize, and got to bed at too late an hour. having little sleep is always a big challenge. I walk away with a serious sore throat and a headache from a smoky club. the people were nice enough, but if a lot of my pieces are about suffering and pouring my heart out, and I’m reading to a bunch of people who are sitting around drinking beer, wasting each other’s time, then somewhere down the line I’m going to feel cheated. or even the very next morning. maybe right now. sting in the eyes. the world is not going to treat me gently at this hour.

pot calls kettle black

reading can really help get your mind off your own problems. It took me a great while to read just a few pages today. I think what I’m attempting is to read The Idiot this time in it’s entirety. it’s a bad habit to drop a book after 300 or so pages into it, but that’s me. it was a good time, the fall of 2000. I was reading Dostoevsky, going to some small poetry readings, the Kid A album was about to come out, the weather was nice and cool, October was approaching…

this, this incident with the family is probably one of the worst experiences of betrayal in my whole life.

hard knox

Lord, You are with me and protecting me. I now see more clearly into the evil and how it tries to attack me and get me caught up in all of the personal battles.

thank You for the clarity. this forces me to realize how sharp the mind must be. when I get to the end of this life I will look back on it and see how short that time really was. I want to always move forward and grow.

the sanskrit word “maya” means “that which is not.” I understand now exactly what that means. Lord, it’s that which is not You.

they want me to focus on their drama. Lord, what a flimsy drama!. thank You for helping me see this. I mourn their weak mindedness.

after an hour or so I have cooled down and feel solace in You. I want to get my ego out of the way; if I feel so insulted like I’m burning up in flames, all is lost. for some, reasoning, everything, is useless. you can pride yourself on being a nice guy, and you may very well be a nice guy – still there will be someone who hates your ass like no tomorrow. someone who will misunderstand you. someone who will hear only what they want to hear. I have to let go of always trying to set every little thing right. it’s not all in my hands, and I should probably be glad for that.

I either die or live. I want to concentrate on my higher interests. people will either support you or they won’t. establish a who’s who list in your head as soon as possible and get on with your business. life is too short.

I have to be ready for the assassins. Lord, make me ready, if You wish. I need to be ready for the worst. I need to expect the worst from them. and yet I need to expect the best, the good things, the signs, the love, from You, from friends.

that’s why life is hard. if you really live it, you’re open to both sides.

I just want to acknowledge that it is by God’s will and arrangement that I landed this job. I pray that we can rise up and become more independent, less of a burden on the family. they’re trying quite hard to shake us out of their hair. it’s a bad mix up in this life, and all I can think to do is further distance myself from them. I pray that I can do this in a mild and gentlemanly fashion, so that I can move through life with a clear head.

up early

my vacation is about to end. as I could sense it, not only did they decide to hire me, but a position opened up in the graphics department which also happens to be paying just a little more. I’m up “early” and in a good mood. stomach growling, eyes sore from reading short stories. a hard rain is on the way. maybe we’ll get out to the laundromat later today and move about a little. yesterday things in the house cooled down gradually after the family left. we’re picking up the pieces.

unwanted guests

don’t forget who’s in charge here. I can feel that violence in the air. I can’t completely trust them. they’re ready to take your head off, just very slowly, over the years, with tiny saws.

hang a new picture. this one. okay. framed nicely. I scratch the leeches off my skin. no response. call out and call out, nada. toast this grape juice high, hope it won’t stain. strand. virus.

it cannot be contained. a contaminate will leak. you can barely trust these people. where can you go? it’s such a trap because it’s such an insult – half of which they don’t even realize is insulting. unbelievable. I feel like I’m making a case for myself. this word goes right after that one. I have to make it a coloring book for them to understand. but will it do any good?

coloring book pages now torn out and used as napkins and place mats. in bed I felt vomitous. I survived it, but it was no good. you have to be stronger than I am to survive this.

daze

the playground is a battleground. you’re never gonna get a job. you’re never gonna figure out how to get a woman pregnant. kids will say all kinds of things. it starts at stupid-head and takes off. the sky’s the limit. I remember a lot of the past and try not to hold onto it, but some things never change, and it is good to see things for what they are. the big life lesson is Buddhist: let go. just let go. I don’t know. I know I feel comfortable writing sentences one right after the other. it’s my way of breaking out of quiet. I’m like that, if I don’t have something to say, I usually won’t force it. even on the phone sometimes I’ll just sit in silence, which is lame.

yes, squirrels are here to ransack this house just the same as you. noise pollution. I unwrap the multitude of presents. happy new year. happy birthday. all these days passing. no holiday that you put some energy into is ever the same. every December month in my life has been different. but this world of likes and dislikes has to adopt a culture of letting go.

wake up early. not any more. life on hold, I sleep in bed with strange dreams till noon. I’m not even opposed to it. it’s just my thing.

I like this sentence from the Koran: “…This is an admonition to all men: to those of you who have the will to be upright.” I really like that, “to those of you who have the will to be upright.” in addition: “yet you cannot will, except by the will of Allah, Lord of the Creation.”

think of this one night, you go outside and look into the sky and the stars are a blur – the kind of starry blur you see on Star Trek when they go into warp drive. notice too, that the whole Earth is shaking, the planet has slipped out of orbit and is falling to who knows the hell where. when you see this, you’ll know you’re a redneck.

sitting in my red chair

nice quiet at night like this. I’m putting in the ink work strong awake and clear. clear as it can be. vent. ventilation. I say it’s nice, but it’s pretty neutral, and I’m not in such a great mood. hard day I guess. just passing the time, doing what I can, but also feeling it’s really not enough.

I can hear the ringing in my ears. I get up and open the window, this Virginia air. I owe it to myself to do some more reading. crickets.

the steal after about the 20th rep starts to slip in my sweaty hand. 30 reps at a time. I’m increasing it over time.

a bug crawls across the carpet, letting him do his thing. I’m not to blame for him being here, it’s Summer, so give these creatures a chance. in WV I tried to stop this little 4 year old boy from stepping on ants. I thought I should be careful ’cause they could accuse me for trying to raise their kid. I hate connections like that. you wanna correct a kid connected to his parent. you wanna correct your boss but he’s your income. you wanna speak truthfully but you’re so plugged into your fear.

that unsettled, life on hold feeling. I have to make the best of that. I watched an Eminem documentary. I have mixed feelings about him, but definitely like the way he rhymes, his choice of word flow. the rest is a big politic to me – I look first at artistic form and try to draw inspiration from it. if I can, I hold onto it. hell, if I thought Screwdriver were any good musically, I’d hold onto that too.

I feel free to say what I want, and so should everyone else.

I’m coming from a similar frustrated platform, but shooting probably a little higher. it’s hard to say. it’s crazy, because sometimes I don’t know what I think. I don’t want to fake that part of myself either. I don’t know why I should be ashamed about anything. I do some stupid stuff, like a lot of people. I don’t waste my money so much on pop culture, but sometimes I’m there downloading it. it’s a part of my history. I’ve listened to some radio songs and have been a little silly, danced around the room. sometimes while doing dishes I’ll make up songs about that cat and badger my wife with some absurd chorus. it’s worn on her. now she does the same to me. it’s contagious. we cook and clean together and cook some more. I juice some carrots to keep my mind occupied. sometimes I just sit in the middle of the floor and don’t do a damn thing.

you manipulate with words that you forget and don’t hold to. my just argument, my case, goes in your right ear and out the left. there is no justice with you. I am a lonely young man for it. you don’t understand? do you understand English any more? no, you’re speaking something else. you’re living out this curse upon me. my fight against the curse, for as long as I’m alive, only makes me stronger.

sooner the better

I think I’m going insane or sinking underwater. it doesn’t take much after all these years. it’s probably easier to sink. I relate it like this, your enemy approaches you, feigns kindness, and then hacks off your arm. the next day feigns some more kindness and wants to know what the hell your problem is. why the attitude? I think I woke up in a really bad parallel dimension. they hate it when you stick up for yourself.

headache council advises more money, more chatter. I learn to turn my hearing down like I’m twisting a plastic knob. I repeat how it is a complicated world. still, when I talk to a friend and let out some of what’s on my mind, I take pride in getting it out methodically, like some kind of master surgeon. I’m back here with my pride, the listener is way up ahead. let me put my pride down and tell the true story. yes, I think I won an argument and yet didn’t win – the loser doesn’t change. I pray about it, I really do. I pray and say that I think I’m really sinking, that some things seem so much bigger than me that this time it’s too much and I don’t feel like exerting the energy any more. another part of me then takes over and carries on.

I look out the window into the storm and throw myself into the tornado. loft over Route 220, I land hard in someone’s backyard tree, come to and take something from the clothesline. it’s not the right thing to do, to take someone’s old army pants, but it’s as if I’m forced against my will. then I wish for other things, a stable family, an income, what I see on TV. it’s a waste. so much time is wasted when you don’t give yourself good solid hobbies, like getting a few amazing comic books and reading them alone in bed. ponder the deep meaning in them. do as many things as deeply as you can and they actually become a supplement to your prayer life. you can’t necessarily share all of it with everyone else, but it’s yours. the sooner you realize you can’t share your full mind the better. everyone agrees I should get out – the sooner the better. I brush my teeth fervently. it’s been too many years since a trip to the dentist. I take a nightmare trip at night to such places to make up for it. this is what I really fear, for this . . . cut. delete. omit. remove. drain. pull out.

the mind is attracted to different television shows. notice one thing, “oh, that’s coming on this week, I’ll write that down dare I forget.” keep an eye on the pattern of what you’re watching. what subjects are you more drawn to over others? what’s prominent for you these days? what’s on its way out? what are you losing interest in, and why? remember also to take out the trash. it’s different here – there’s no trash pick up. just a set of dumpsters on the side of the highway. aluminum cans, plastic milk jugs, generic plastics, newspapers, all have their separate massive buildings. it’s also important to note this: don’t get too attached to anything. pat down every part of the room. be accustomed to the feel of the right and left walls, northern and southern textures, all the scattered about articles on the floor, pick them up and toss them over there, get into a more organized mess. break it all down. fold the clothes right there in the laundromat and take them home, put them up on the shelf. don’t wait around. what subject matter! next, the lightbulbs are burning out. every single one of them. the girl with her young crush now only gets postcards. she’s writing back about her summer and all the things that continue to frustrate her even though school is out and she should be in a better mood. why can’t her mother figure her out? they put this girl through a metal detector. cops talking on their CBs.

it all moves on and gets recycled in some marketing department down the line, repackaged, the original tune forgotten and ground out of the machine into some 99 cent cheeseburger commercial. little kids will not know who Shaft is, but they’ll know Shaq. they’ll stand there and be jumped over.

wake up

adrenaline rush. more afternoon writing. we feel cramped in our style with the family here. I’m jumping around the room just to create some of my own energy. the wife feels trampled upon. wake up, wake up! it is past noon and we need to get going. we’re going to drive to Blacksburg and check out the area while the sun is still up. it is good to get out of the house and into those high winds.

whirlwind of ash

afternoon time. I hardly write at this time, mostly because I feel like I should be doing something else. but this is productive too. if no one wants to give me work right now, it’s not the end of the world. so I tell myself. I have to remind myself of all the important things. I’ve been reading the Koran. I have good solace in that. these are the personal pleasures in life which no company should invalidate.

I went to this job interview the other day that turned out merely to be a seminar. I was pretty upset. another multi-level marketing scheme. they gave this formulated speech and tried to rope everyone in. here I was walking into the office expecting to sit down and talk with the big boss about how much I had to offer, etc., and the next thing I know I’m sitting in the back row with a lemon faced expression. for some reason I sat through the whole thing. by the end I was still not getting anything out of it, and I slipped by. I could tell it was a rip off. you become a salesman for their company, and it’s easy. sure it is. when they’re trying to rip you off, they’re always so vague. ripping off your time.

I want a job where I don’t have to talk to people much. I want to mind my own business and not be in the center of a stock market crash. I want to concentrate on prayer and the higher things all throughout my day, and I don’t think I should be faulted for that. others, they work their stressful jobs and return home to the television relaxing alpha state and get in a grove. they believe everything they see on Entertainment Tonight, and care about every single outfit the stars are wearing. fucking forget it.

people decorate everything around them and think that as long as they’re moving, they’re getting somewhere. they’re simply creating a whirlwind of ash all around them. I choke in that space they create. it’s like they want it to expand. they have no concept of a personal zone. selfishness to fill a house, fill a building, fill whatever it takes. there is not enough room in this town for the two of us. these cowboys on a mission from ego.