Catatonic repose affect flat and bare thoughts locked in mid-battle weaving chaos enough to wear. Halcyon days under visions of winter sun so bright, sitting with view turned in reflecting fiercely in that light. Mindfulness resides focuses on action, body, and soul, a smile branches out as new knowledge chases out the cold.
I’ve savaged myself that the tears stopped coming and all that I worked for became a blur, a host of lost memories never to be rediscovered. I demolished those around me, took no pity on their love or their affection just danced with my devil selfishly until it all ran bare. I gave away lifetimes of joy and moments of glee, the kind that you’re blessed to find once much less time and time again. In the end, it was never worth it, and though I can never take it back, I can walk taller now with each day despite my stumbles, each day I will find the win, become something more.
Tactical with your hands the way you smooth my skin beneath fingers so cool. A promise held in your palm where it blends away pain into pressure and pleasure. Your touch sifts away the world, leaves me gasping in relief that we are not alone.
So I had been attempting a 30 day challenge to write everyday and post something new to the blog. Sadly, as school crept into the mix I can say that while I’ve written everyday, nothing more made it up here after the 11th day…I’ll take it as a partial win since doing anything for more than a day straight tends to be a bit of a personal adventure of sorts.
The other interruption was going on a weeklong retreat to practice a new healing method I’ve been exploring with a shaman down on a pot farm in Oregon. I spent a week sitting with Grandmother and Grandfather along with some of the most amazing people it has ever been my pleasure to encounter. True hippies, filled with the love leftover from the movement in the 60s and still sharing what it means to be surrounded by brothers and sisters with no shared blood but all the right intent.
With that in mind, I wanted to put it out there to what audience there may be of the blog still to see what others can come up with on a topic that has become near and dear to me of late. Plant medicine, any form be it poetry, prose, short, or long, I’d like to read something from you fine folks on the topic however you see fit to blend it into your work.
I don’t have a lot of resources, but the top entry will get a $10 PayPal donation or eGiftCard of your choice. Please leave submissions in the comment section. Contest will end October 20th, 2020.
Thanks for reading, and here’s my own submission:
Full moon night, harvest weather. Ceremony tent glowing from colored tapestries dangling as flags of focus. Stage set for the journey to come home, be set free from Earthly Bonds into the Dreamtime.
Hesitation on the edge of perfection while the wind whips back past the lips of despair and a trajectory that ends splatted on the rocks below. A momentary pause for God knows what reason, soliloquy rattling like unquenched armor inside a skull aching for reasons and meaning.
No jovial tone to be found other than the laughing hysteria that comes choked off with a seemingly endless parade of tears. Coughing, bawling, howling, begging, giggling into the yawning darkness and discontent of a reality set to dissolve beneath the weight of a mind misfiring badly.
The beautiful tableau awash in sunlight and a fucking million possibilities all riots against that creeping sensation that “all is not what it seems”. A centipede who can no longer walk because he thought about how he did it. Natural instinct sold out into chained slavery inside the boundaries of nothing and infinity. Conjured by poisons and released by fears it’s set loose as a hungry behemoth on the landscape of mind, the carvings of soul, the sculpture of heart.
Hesitation on the edge of perfection with the barest sliver of hope overcoming resignation. Nothing is ever as it seems, and the worst of the world today may become the most redeemed beauties of tomorrow. Shake off the terror and walk into the fire to be forged anew.
The edge of perfection recedes against hope. Time slips forward into the next scene.
Strummed beat, matched march, dirges as a throwaway tune, deviancy is salt to bear rubbed tight inside a weeping open wound. If you haven’t heard the music yet then swallow down your pride. The life we lead is the life we get and you’ll know it deep inside. So stagger or crawl and jog or sprint or fly, the Devil is inside your soul today, just like it is for I.
I thought it would be a fun way to go today with a little poetry of sorts to begin with. This damn challenge thing has me trying to think on my feet about what to write and I seem to be coming up dry, or at least feeling like I’m grasping for straws about what to say. The goal was to just put fingers to keyboard everyday, and I’m happy to say that I’ve pretty much managed to do just that.
So, with that said, on my mind today is the nature of our own personal evils, our devils, our drive to do the untoward and vicious. For me, that takes the form of drinking or drugs, pumping my body full of as much poison as I can stand in whatever way I can get it. It’s always surprisingly shocking when after a bout in the ring with that particular demon suddenly the quality of life I’m experiencing diminishes rapidly and dramatically. I don’t know why it’s surprising is the thing, we truly do generate our own decisions, and those choices play out in the overall feeling of our life and how well we are able to experience the highs and the lows.
That seems like really common sense knowledge, and despite that I have sat remaining in, then feigning ignorance of it. Life truly is what you make it, trite and cliche as the saying may be, there is a huge degree of veracity to it that I somehow missed. It’s like I wasn’t there at school that day and somehow managed to keep missing that lesson for the next 20 years.
With that in mind, addiction is a doubly baffling fucking ailment to explore and endure. You find yourself superseding every survival instinct and rational or logical awareness you have in lieu of chasing further inclement weather, misery, and chagrin–all done for a momentary rush that has faded into boring monotonous repetition long, long ago.
I get that there is a re-wiring that happens internally with addicts. If you show an image of a crack pipe to a crack addict, before the frontal cortex is triggered the pleasure center rings in and says “great times to be had”. That means that addiction literally steps around the “smarts” part of the brain that makes decisions and can bring a logical or determined drive to bear on any dangerous ideas. Which in many ways makes it seem scientifically hopeless to recover.
But people do, in a myriad of ways. Some manage to just go the harm reduction route and drastically reduce their intake, or they transition it to new forms of addictive tendencies that are less damaging, or they actually well and truly get sober. The fact that there is a narrow band of success and the penalty for failure is horror without refrain followed by an early death doesn’t always make a sufficiently motivational case it seems.
Today, I continue the struggle, moving forward one foot at a time, continuing to believe and search for answers or solutions to something that has stymied me for the vast majority of my life. It is my heaviest wish to somehow overcome and share that success as a lesson to my children about what is truly possible as one of the strangest species on the planet.
People are weird, and when we carry monsters in our back pockets, we only get weirder. Part of me wants to just plain rejoice in that insanity and the multitude of characters that are created by the imps at our door, but most of me is just plain done reveling in a well trod and predictable path leading nowhere but an early grave.
Time will tell, as it always does. Plus hey, I still have getting poisoned by frog secretions to look forward to in a short number of weeks!
I just started reading “Howl” by Allen Ginsberg and am already taken off my feet by the remarkably flippant and deep feeling fuck off embodiment of a massive struggle we/he face(d). I absolutely love the thick atmosphere of dirt riddled dis-ease and aggressively sexual overtones that demand I open my eyes and ears to the realism of what goes on beneath and behind the scenes. The title fits so perfectly as the first section seems to roil up a primal scream. A shout for attention to be paid to the damned masses and the rollicking unbridled injustice they endure and are forced to thrive within.
Fucking. Magical. Here’s a snippet:
Who broke down crying in white gymnasiums naked and trembling before the machinery of other skeletons; who bit detectives in the neck and shrieked with delight in policecars for committing no crime but their own wild cooking pederasty and intoxication; who howled on their knees in the subway and were dragged off the roof waving genitals and manuscripts
Allen Ginsberg, “Howl”
How vivid and intense are the words? How brilliantly anarchistic and rebellious is the feeling? How just, fucking, magical, are those words?
At least for me, reading Ginsberg is an unfettering of the constraints and standard normative I find in so much of my own and other writing. It takes me back to the wilderness of my own mind and demands that I purge the violence and sickness that resides there in some glorious fountain of verbal spew that it might infect the mainstream with decades of sweat and tears and failure and endurance and broken spirits and unbroken souls.
I am so glad I picked this up, and sometime in the next 30 days I might start an homage piece to what I’m personally characterizing as (with my limited scope of awareness to be sure) one of the most scandalously beautiful pieces of literature I have ever run across. Thank you for your pain and horror Mr. Ginsberg, thank you.