Musings just because I still have time to muse.
I understand, you see, how you would willingly die for that which you love, even though that which you love had willingly and gratefully chosen your death. Even though you love strangers that condemn you. It is with a burning passion for my country that makes me understand your love for humanity, for the world. How vainglorious it must make me seem to consider myself a martyr even though I have done nothing that merits me this title, a martyr simply because I consider, in fact, I wish that my death be for the sake of my country. It is the most beautiful death I could think of, the only death I would willingly live out- to die for the strangers whom I so passionately love, for the enemies I so sincerely wish to embrace. That is the only death for me. And I find myself arrogant enough to believe that I deserve such a privileged death. My country deserves better and yet all that I am is all that I can give.
A reaction to my Samsung earphones- I’d probably come up with a better articulation for a title but for now, that’s all I’ve got.
It’s a different sense, when we veil our ears with silence and yet we hear all too much. The noise of the outside world with its pervasive, dangling, anticipating truths hushed but then the noise of my body, and the noise of its truths tick loudly like a time bomb, they hum like a semi-conscious recollection. This is how I sound like, in my silence- this is how I sound.
I can hear my pulse, the toils of a beating penchant perseveringly trying to validate its existence by abiding to some mechanical, natural law, to some biological doctrine. I beat therefore I exist.
I exist. Therefore.
The trailing (off) of a forgotten organ.
I can hear me breathing. Deep and sober breaths. The sweetness of a subdued pacific. The hallow echo of an empty shell, the ocean ringing in the distance. The fluid sigh of a reckless existence. The inhale, exhale of a numbness.
I can hear my swallow.
The swallowing of heavy gulps that deny my nerve-wrecked dream the light of day, the Icarus being, the sun embrace. The nervous gulps of a heavy mind with shaky knees and sweaty palms. Hiding behind a comfortable shadow, an easy darkness.
I can hear my teeth, reluctantly clanking like a groaning wench. They bump against hard shells of a sensitive sweet nerve. They reecho the beats of an unnamed vain pulsating in the side of my collar with a renounced lipstick stain. A trudging in a stretched out neck. A clicking anxiety. A chewing grace.
I can hear the nature in me whispering its ascendency over my determined self.
The silent longing of a dreaming thing. The dying hope of a foolish wish.
This child wanting.
This child clawing its way out of a damp, cold well- the limbo landmark of a teasing fate. With nail scratches of an irrefutable will. Hanging on by a fine, trembling thread.
This is what I sound like. In my silence. This is how I sound.
The call of desperation wishing to be something else. The soul escaping. The awkward shifting of a sheepish stare. The head bowing. The slow grip echo of a cigarette flying kiss, of halo smoke rings dissipating.
This is what I sound like. In my silence, this is how I sound.
And’s all too much for me to hear.
Vignettes without Closure. An excerpt.
Part 1: The Initial Offer
“What if we were all clones? What if we’re not who we think we are- just copies? Just 2nd hand copies of ourselves? The real selves?” Bob says as he enthusiastically scrutinizes his hands, staring down his fingertips wondering if it was really his. A bewildered look on his face like Einstein might have looked like when he thought he was on to something. Something big. Like a rabid dog chasing its tail never realizing the grand circle it was in. The look of a saddening epiphany, a false hope, which is triumphantly elusive and easily believable. And you almost always fall prey to it.
“I’d say you’re high which isn’t a bad bet judging by the look of your pupils.” I grab his face to stare him down. Pupils dilated. Eyes flushed red. Whiskey breath. The works. He slaps my hand away as he pulls his face down.
“You’re not listening to me. What if, Jeff?” He had said it. The deadliest two-word combination query: what if. This dangling phrase that rids you of closure because it invokes all the possibilities. A limitless and therefore unfathomable amount of possibilities. The infinite question that dangerously toys with you, that knows your weak spots: hope, desire- the probability of getting it right, of getting it on, of at least getting something.
“What if?” He repeated. Eyes even more filled with a glorious mystery, a bubbling naïve enthusiasm. Taunting me with imploring eyebrows and a wolfish smirk that slyly say: “let the thought marinade a bit. Give it a chance.”
And with it, with this profound question: A million dimensions open, infinite worlds and their infinite situations simultaneously play out. Everything cascades with anything. And nothing plays its part. No wonder his pupils were dilated. The endless had always had this power of reducing one into a grand child filled with a terribly ravenous gaze, a wondrously insatiable curiosity.
“Alright.” I take the bait. “What if?”
“I was just asking.” He says. And all the worlds close. Slamming the sweet door of relativity shut. Infinity denied. My wounded, toyed hope begins to lick its wounds with a sigh. He smiles wickedly as I do.
“That’s it? I thought at least you had something else to offer. A second argument. A wonderful fiction to lead me on…”
He smiles cockily. Mischievously, perhaps, beneath it even apologetically. It’s hard to say. Smiles are hard things to read.
“Sorry to disappoint.” He says. “But I have none. I do think it’s possible, though. Not now but someday. Someday we’d all be copies and humanity would have reduced itself into an arrogant commodity.”
“Wow” I don’t know if I had said that “wow” with a scoff, a mocking defensive scoff that wants nothing to do with this tomfoolery or with an openness of a slightly healing hope that we’d make good conversation. A forgiving wow. A trusting wow. Or maybe a down right rhetoric of a wow. Exclamations have their undertones, I suppose. Tricky undertones.
“I read this book… Seroks? Good book. Told a story of a world where cloning is rampant. In fact, clones can be copied- pirated edition clones. I wonder what that world must be like? Can you imagine?” I can actually: I bet it’d be terrifying. Depressing. More so because such a world, as Bob had claimed, is realizable.
“Imagine it.” He goes on. “I bet nothing would be sacred anymore. I bet everything would be plastic, dispensable. In a world where humans are products, rights vanish. And maybe humans will lose its humanity.”
“What is humanity, Bob? It’s just our race and whatever our race surmounts to. I think it plain arrogance to consider humanity another term for benevolence. Can you picture the audacity? As though we’re the only species with compassion. We’re also the only species with mass murder, war… hate. The only creature with this much hate.”
“What’s with the bitterness, Jeff? Don’t you like being human?”
“It isn’t that. Or maybe it is. Or maybe it’s the changing times. I don’t know what being human is tantamount to these days but I bet one day, I’d just wake up and realize I wouldn’t be able to live up to the definition or worse I wouldn’t like it because… well because…”
“Because we’d all be lesser copies of ourselves?”
“You should read the book. Has your favorite shade of melancholic.”
“Oh and what shade is that?”
“The slightly darker ones, the ones tinged with a soft anger, the brewing anger sort. Not enough to allude to destruction but it’s there.”
“Bob, you know me so well.” I say with a smile that’s partly alcoholic, slightly sarcastic, and maybe a tiny bit sincere.
“I’ll lend you mine.”
“I’ll buy a copy.”
“Your obsession with having to own a copy for yourself… I don’t get it. We could share, you know? It’s more economical. More practical.”
“I like to smell it. You know that. It’s a fetish. A selfish clause. The only thing I feel I could really own even though it isn’t really mine- the scent of the book. The feel of the paper.” I inhale deeply. The thought alone excites me, subdues me into a happier mood. Not in a venereal way or anything. Just a happy way. Simply happy. A rare, unorthodox happy.
“Hm. Kinky.” He says with a half laugh and a condoning, patronizing head shake.
“This thing… this quirk… “ I go on feeling the need to justify myself. “…it’s beyond the considerations of economics and practicality. It’s a matter of well being not simply pragmatism. That is, if today’s society hasn’t equated well being into whatever’s pragmatic. These times? Even pleasure is a matter of money.”
“Maybe that’s the price we pay for progress, for modernization. We have this impulse to quantify everything to solidify one’s worth with a number. To reduce things to efficiency and prudence and pros and cons and nothing else.”
“You see? Even the terms: “the price we pay” everything’s a matter of payment, of debt or loss or profit. It lacks feeling that’s all. It lacks…”
“A certain sense of being human?” He interrupts. “I thought humanity, being human is what we make of it?”
“Well yeah but it doesn’t mean we don’t see how the definition changes. And to some extent we’re partial for certain definitions rather than others. I don’t like a mechanical humanity, Bob. I like the magical element of feeling. I don’t subscribe to feelings myself but collectively, I like it. In fact, we need it. It humbles us.”
“I never thought I’d see the day when you’d defend feelings, Jeff. My you’ve changed.” He says playfully, childishly.
“Hasn’t everything?” I say with a scoff and maybe even a soft, conspicuous chuckle.
The Pen and Me- A relationship update.
I don’t know what to do with myself. The pen is a high maintenance lover. It demands all that you can give and after, it wants more. So much more. In fact too much. But that is the irony of the pen’s excess- it is never enough.
We once had this dream- this dream of starting a family in a dusty stack of yellow pad paper. Of making stories from scratch and leaving them in the dirt to be born. This dream of growth. We could’ve had it all. But, you see, this simplicity was a tricky simplicity. Because it was eluding and in fact not so simple, not really.
This “simplicity” that has no satisfaction is the deadly sort. The pen demands that. It demands death or nothing. The whole of you or nothing. Your life or nothing. I could not commit to such a love. I couldn’t. This was the scariest way to love after all. Mainly because it was the real way. The true way. For us, I mean.
All that is left of me is abstract bone. Porous and hollow. The sort that time had bitten into, had sucked the marrow out of. The kind of bone bruised by it, by the ages. The pen was reduced to a cancer plastic. Blackened blood by cigarette smoke and brandy kisses. The previous, mine, the latter, the bottle’s. Our secret mistress. Our holy vices. We’re a wishful thought in a trailer park, now: A dried-up hag with curlers in her hair and only a red secondhand satin night robe on. My potbelly lover beside me with its musky 5’o clock shadow that darkens a once idealistic face. That’s an accurate depiction of my current relationship with the pen. We’re the sort of desperation that only clings to the threads at the seams. Because that’s the only thing left to cling on. That magic thread. This poem. This one poem we used to recite over and over and over again during our youth- our promisingly glorious, dangerously illusive youth. We’ve become the hiccups left when the Champagne bottle had finished itself and the luxury had faded away- the luxury of free time, of free thought, of dreaming- the whole “you can be whatever you want to be” idealism. That deadly ideology. It’s idealism that killed the Jews. Hitler’s to be precise. It’s idealism that killed us. But maybe we’re better of dead- dead and still wanting. Maybe this is the devil’s heaven: we still want after all. We still have the energy to want. We still have that going on for us. Even if we have forgotten our dreams. We can still want.
Maybe this implies that we haven’t really given up. Or maybe this is our idealism again- planning to kill us the third time around.
That note. A reconstruction.
There’s a storm cloud in my beating penchant. A condensing thunder typhoon that wants to find its peace, that wants to overflow. That wants to spill into the Earth, quiver it with waves that kiss like punches, spill over like a death grip, hug tip. It’s the destruction in me that doesn’t know how strong damage can become, how powerful scars can get. I want to yell like a Zeus thunderbolt. I want to strike like lightning cuts on frail string veins holding up a clicking wrist. I want to slice the life cake with a butter knife. I want to jump because gravity is just a theory and maybe the crash won’t seem so hard, maybe I’d fly into my undergloom. Soar into my Hades’ sky. I’d like that. Maybe falling needs redefining. I want silence. Or maybe I’ve had too much of silence. I want to let the noise out. Turn the mute lock open. Spill my secrets like sour milk on a garbage bin. Unstitch the lip stains with champagne or other alcoholic sedatives. For Christ’s sake. I need to unzip my self-shell, caress my hallow. Be that empty dark. Scrape the physical off my abstract bones and holy blood. Be soul. I don’t want to exist as (w)hole. I want to be vapor. I want to be essence. I want to be phantasm. Not here. Not there. Not anybody’s. Christ, let me desist.