All of broken-down humanity, raging like crazy people in the night, desperately searching for connection, or holed-up in private castles hoarding crumbs of affection and sparse memories of being human.
All of broken-down humanity, getting drunk and fucking like it's a miracle cure, or watching hour after hour of mediocre tv shows, killing time with endless scrabble games.
All of broken-down humanity, trying not to feel, trying not to face it, or burning up from the agony and terror and going down in flames.
All of broken-down humanity, this is why you did heroin, this is why you started wars, this is why you hurt and rape and kill.
All of broken-down humanity, lost in the wilderness of society, pretending it's ok, wishing for more... maybe, forgetting how to dream, forgetting how to want, forgetting who we really are.
All of broken-down humanity, searching for answers in weird mystical places and practices - astrology and acupuncture and hundreds of religions, and the only real answer is: there's no room to be you! we got fucked-over and are lonely, we must build a new world.
All of broken-down humanity, - we can only fuck and fuck-over because we've forgotten love, forgotten how to love.
We need a change we need to remember we need to make room for our humanity we need to recover from the ages we need to rest we need real love.
The wolf and the crow visited me one winter night, whispering, "Your true self is waiting, Your true self is waiting," and I snuck out into the cold and dark where I ate wild grubs of the present moment and foraged for bark from the tree of life until my clothes turned brown and grey and green, the colors of the woodsfolk, and I could run one hundred miles without stopping and my wings finally regrew and I disappeared into the sky.
Back in the kingdom of me, the dust has gathered on the floor and birds nest in the high tower, but I have finally returned, so I light a new fire in the hearth, clean up a little, and look out at the land I have missed for so long.
Walking down a familiar dirt road, I feel content, and then I realize I have never been there before - except in other dreams, and that there's a whole landscape I visit over and over in dreams (and memories of other dream roads) and then I realize even those memories are dreamed up.
There's that far away place, usually down a long river, where you can dive off the rocks and go for a swim, but you don't know exactly where it is, or how to get there, only that it is wonderful and mysterious, and you've been there many times, at least in these dreams, and it might not always be the same place physically, but it has the same feeling, the same empty watery feeling, the same rocky primal feeling, and sometimes it is the river, and sometimes there's a powerful tall waterfall you are swept over, or maybe jump over, and sometimes it's a huge steamy bathroom with tons of empty showers running but it's really the same place somehow and sometimes the showers are right near a pool which is by a waterfall which leads you out into the wilderness and to that rocky diving spot, or below an ancient temple, and you're not sure if it's ominous there or not, but you remember other times, in dreams that are similar, sliding down crazy water slides that go underground, and swift-currented rivers you are propelled along, and on and on, until you wake up.
Spiderman retires and takes up watercolor painting in the countryside because he gets so tired of all those tear-jerking moments where his friend, who was his enemy for a while, dies after fighting off the real bad guy, who probably wasn't bad, just misguided.
Gandalf goes to therapy and starts to realize that the shadow of the past is only a shadow, and a ring is only a ring, and even though he wishes for a dramatic solution to soothe his dark memories, he starts to understand that the best thing he could do is live in the present, and save Frodo and the other hobbits a whole lot of trouble.
Young Bruce Wayne never becomes Batman because some helpful social worker realizes that Bruce just needs to cry and cry about his parent's death, and explains that all his dark fantasies of revenge can never bring back mom and dad. Instead of growing up to be a costumed vigilante, Bruce becomes an artist.
I wrote poems about love and longing, I pined, I schemed about ways to meet you, planned what I would say and how I might approach you.
It's all come to nothing so far.
Here's my latest plan:
You won't know me when I'm near, because I will not notice you, my eyes will glance over you to someone beyond, I'll turn away, look down, keep walking, but late at night I'll return to my secret task: digging a convoluted tunnel to your heart, bit by bit, with a bent and rusty spoon I stole from the cafe.
Any day now I'm sure to break through, and stealthily enter the chambers of your heart - on tip-toe, in socks, breathing shallowly and moving slowly.
I don't want to disturb anything, I just want to see what it's like to be in there.
Maybe I'd pause for a bit and watch how you secretly love the world when you think no one else is around.
I might take a nap, too, before I headed out, because it would be so warm and comfortable.
The only things I'd leave behind are a few tender kisses in spots that wouldn't bother you or disrupt your days, a soft string guideline to make finding my way back easier, and a note that said
There's that face in the crowd, a random person in a sea of strangers, that sets your heart on fire, and it doesn't turn out like in the movies, because you never meet them, and your struggle to tell them you love them never gets resolved, one way or another. You just go on seeing them every once in a while, heart-aching, trying not to let on, trying not to care, wondering why it seems to matter to begin with, but not understanding how you can do nothing, or how you could do anything, anyway.
I thought maybe I’d write a love poem for every time I saw you from a distance and longed to know your name,
A poem for every word that stuck in my throat when in your presence,
A poem for all the hours I spent thinking of ways to meet you that didn’t involve revealing that I already loved you.
But it would add up, you know, all that paper.
At first I’d slowly replace everything I own with stacks of love poems, but then the apartment would get too full, and the door would burst open like in the cartoons, with papers flying every-which-way …and there’s me running around, trying to keep things in order, keep them contained.
Me, running around making the worst hundred thousand poems into confetti for the impromptu parade for you,
And with the rest of the poems, building block after city block of shrines and monuments in your name.
My borrowed ambition pen: doodling, noodling, sketching,
trying to find what was lost
trying to arrange what is in disarry
trying to make sense of what doesn't make sense of
Like a mind of its own, it’s searching the shadows of my understanding, probing into my broken heart looking for the indestructible black box that holds the secrets to what went wrong
My borrowed ambition pen is travelling deep into outer space now, chasing comets of lost love, skirting the gravitational pulls of black hole disaster zones where nobody knows… knows what there is there and nobody can.
What is it learning? What does it know?
When it gets back to earth we’ll have a party to study the complete map of the emotional cosmos called me, and we’ll put big red danger ‘X’s on certain spots, and never never go there except by accident, or if we have to because of true love again
Only this time I’ll have a new, re-enforced space suit, and extra oxygen tanks and plenty of food, in case I get stranded for a long time, and probably a homing beacon so you can come rescue me, all you people who were at my universe party and warned me not to go there, but knew I would, because who can hold back where love and hearts are concerned, and who would want to anyway?
My borrowed ambition pen is like anti-kryptonite, boosting my strength to super human levels, and I’m using it to chop down forests of primal delusions where – by gum! – it’s still beating: this old heart, this old forgotten heart.
It looks like we got here in the nick of time, too, but it always feels like that, doesn’t it?
I don’t mean to alarm you, but just outside the yard there’s a pulsing landscape, filled with ever-blooming flowers and the un-dimmed dreams of youth. All you need to do is raise your eyes ever so slightly from the TV, and cast your glance out the window at the billowing clouds or the momentary flight of birds, or the sun going down over the hills, and Bam! you might never find your way back.
I guess the opposite of wasting time is hoarding time,
pinching off seconds like pennies, counting minutes on the balance sheet of your life and hoping they are all wisely invested, well-spent, not wasted on frivolous things, or luxuries, or anything intangible, like happiness.