Free That Thought

When our thoughts and their understanding wants it, divine wisdom will flow like the wind through us.

The edge of the forest follows a row of hills in a line so straight it looks as if it has been drawn with a ruler’s perfect measure from Heaven above. Off in the distance sits something like a crumpling wad of evergreen construction paper. All I could make out of it was a vast and wild thicket of trees.

The branches shone with dullness in the sun all the way up to that point, where they disappeared into the infinite green. It seemed as though the landscape would continue like this for an eternity, or however far one was willing to go. I cannot lie, the idea excited me just as much as it did in the beginning. If this was how it was going to be, then bring it home to me.

I extinguished the negativity, stretched, and placed my eyes upon the sky.  I hadn’t looked to the sky for some time. In fact, it had been awhile since my eyes rested on anything, even me.

Not a cloud was visible in the crystalline blue sky above me. A veil of fog hovered in the silent air over the wild, as often happens in the spring, like an elusive membrane waiting patiently to be infiltrated by the endless sky above. Particles of sunshine trickled down like little drops of rain, collecting itself in a puddle, going almost unnoticed on the path before me.

In the warmth of this breeze, the light, as so often before, wavered in and out.  The air flowed synchronistic with leisure, like a flock of lovebirds flying between each and every tree.  It skimmed the forest lined slopes along the edge, crossing the path, and passing through the groves of me without so much as ruffling a leaf.  

A crow’s sharp cry cut through the gentle morning like an arrow, and disappeared over the ridge. The undulating mountainous wild ahead resembled a giant sleeping beast, cozied up with the warmth of infinity.

Suddenly I felt the sharpness of death from the pain in my feet, they were exhausted, and it was only growing worse.  

Or was it?

JUST A THOUGHT

It was then I decided to give in to the voices of my own mind speaking from within, from my own depths, and one of these voices said that there was my body, in nature, and that there was also me.  I was related to this nature through my body, but all of me was not contained to it. The same goes for said so-called pain.  It is all just a mental illusion that I am not at all contained too.  

In the mental discipline I have been practicing over the past month or so, and of which I am beginning to feel the positive effects, it is of the truth that stability and tranquility have been the practicing prerequisites in the establishment of my own peaceful thinking. 

Practicing these two things day in and day out, does allow one a promising result from will alone.  This will to better one’s way of thinking is a direct link which connects the dots of the soul to the world as-it-is.  Through practicing this mental will, the soul frees itself from the distraction of daily routine, as it delicately tunes itself to the spiritual instrument of dreams.  So please allow me a moment of fine tuning.

Thinking, the power to think and to know, is a source of freedom.  Thinking makes it obvious that spirit exists.  The physical body is a mere agent of the spirit and its mirror.  It is both an engine and a reflection of the spirit.  It is the spirit’s ingenious memorandum to itself and the spirit sees itself in my body, just as I see my own face in a looking glass.  My nerves and my illusions reflect this, much like the pain in my feet as of late.  

This earth, and all of its inhabitants are a literal mirror of thoughts, just as Heaven is a metaphysical mirror of love.  You see, in Heaven, you don’t reflect on love, you reflect it, and the tragedy with the contemporary thought is that it has forgotten how to be a mirror.

Yes it is true, we are all divine by nature, human by habit, and magnificent with glimmers as we meander towards our ultimate destination, that being death. And the habits of thinking itself is just an embodied thought, embodied by the fact of death alone.  

Death is the dark tapestry behind us that the mirror of Heaven needs in its reflection if we are to see anything through the eyes of love.  Every negative perception of an object causes a certain amount of death in us, and this darkening state is born out of death’s necessity. 

One will actually start to see the truth of this when one learns how to obtain the inward view of one’s self.  To do this, one must get out of themself and stand far off, in the contemplation of solitude and nature of our own wild. This is the only place in which genuine reflection comes.  One will then see, that death knows no mercy, and to quit worrying about every damn thing and just be.

In this life we attract the reflections of what we think. And we also attract what we judge in this life. If you worry all the time, those worries you will constantly find. If you think people are dishonest, you will attract dishonesty. If you are focused on sickness or disease, you attract more suffering. If you focus on poverty and being broke mentally, then you will gain nothing more than an endlessly empty account of the soul.

Every objective thought you hold in your consciousness becomes your cage of reality. Tune your focus upon abundance and honesty towards all, and that which you believe and see, will be. So instead try and embrace the good, embrace every little bit of love, and all the lovely and good things will come endlessly and naturally.

IN CLOSING

If there is nothing of a message in these words but some hints of egoism and its death, some illusion that my fate is being outwitted by my own self, or my own avoidance of the reality of the grave, perhaps my writing these words is not worth the trouble.  This of course, waits in the remnants of what is to be seen.  And maybe that alone is worth the trouble. 

But before we go any further, one must bear in mind the odd angles that the rays of love, faith, and light must take in order to reach a broken soul like mine, which you will find in the words I have long left behind.

It is just as well in this different perception of light, that I now understand in part, I think.  When our thoughts and their understanding wants it, divine wisdom will flow to us like the wind blows around us.

And what I mean by this, is that I have placed too much of a hidden emphasis over the years on the darkness of external things.  So now, I must deviate from said darkness, and turn my attention in the light of the right direction.  That being forward, towards the daunting mountain that looms lit ahead, and into the depths of the wild within me.

—BeLove

For The Love Of Rain

Let them call me rebel and welcome it, I feel no concern from it. But I should suffer the misery of devils, if I were to make a slave of my soul…

Allow me to say a few things before this rain is made a utility that they plan and distribute for a price.  By “they” I am speaking of those who do not understand that rain is a celebration, those who do not appreciate its gratuity, those who think that what carries no cost has no value, that what cannot be sold as material is not real, and that the only way to make something real is to place it on the market as something material.  

Yes, the time will come when they try and sell you even your rain, such is capitalistic theory. At the moment it is still free, and I am in it, dancing. I celebrate its gratuity and its worthlessness all the same.

This rain I am in is not like the rain that falls in the city. It fills my surroundings with an immeasurable and confused sound. It shields the slanted roof of my home with His persistent and controlled rhythm. And I listen, because it reminds me again and again that the whole world is run by rhythms I have yet to learn how to recognize, rhythms that are not those of man but of Him, the Engineer.

As I meander through this rain, sloshing through this deserted night, I stumble upon a temporary shelter as the night has fallen dark. The rain has walled me in with an immense virginal myth, a whole new world of meaning, of secrecy, of silence, of rumor.

Just to think of it: all its noiseless speech pouring down, selling nothing, judging no one, soaking the parched ground, drenching the trees, filling the streams in this wild with rejuvenated water, washing out the dwellings that have stripped the wild of its heart.

What a thing to be here dancing in this rain, in the forest, in the darkness of night, cherished by this wonderful, dripping, perfectly innocent speech, the most gentle comfort in the world, with the kind of talk it makes alone all over the ridge lines, upon the edges of my mind, and through the conversations of streams throughout the hollows of my soul.

No one started it, and no one is going to stop it. It will speak as long as it wants, after all, this rain was of the Engineer.  As long as it speaks I am going to listen.  

But I am also going to sleep, because here in this wilderness I have learned how to sleep again beneath the dampness of a dripping wet lullaby. Here I am not unknown. The trees I know, the rain I have known, and this darkness of night, I have known for too long. I shutter my eyes and sink into the stream of this rain soaked darkness of which I am part, and the stream goes on with me in it, for I am not unknown to it.

I have become unknown to the noise of the city, to the greed of machinery that knows nothing of sleep, the hum of power that swallows up the night. Where rain, sunlight and darkness are held in contempt, I cannot sleep. In my older age, I have found it harder to trust anything that has been fabricated to replace the true nature of my wild.

I carry zero confidence in places where the air is first fouled and then cleansed, where the water is first treated with something deadly and then deemed “safe” with other poisons in the name of greedy filth.  

All of this is the asphyxiation of a myth. The city lives its own myth by choking the reverence out of nature. Instead of waking up and silently existing, they prefer a material and fabricated dream. They have constructed a world outside the world, against the world, a world of mechanical fiction, which condemn nature and seek to only use it up, thus making it harder for nature to renew itself, and that of man.

Of course this celebration of rain cannot be stopped, not even in the city. The woman from the deli scampers along the crosswalk with a newspaper disguised as an umbrella, scared to get wet. Men traipsing down the road like ballerinas, so not to get their little loafers soaked.

The streets, suddenly washed, become transparent and alive. The noise of traffic gives way to the splashing of splendid fountains. Kids bouncing from one endless pool to the next, not a care in the world. Children are well aware of the celebration of rain. As there was nothing more important than in the moment of a sudden rainstorm through the eyes of a child. The joy soaks through their souls and gives life to their innocent and blooming imaginations.

One would think that the city folk in a rainstorm would have no choice but to take into account the nature of its fresh wetness, its baptism and its renewal. And they themselves would assume that noise is left to the wilder ones, the country boys. To the city folk, the rain brings no renewal, renewal can only be found in the forecast of tomorrow, and the glint upon the windows of buildings will then have nothing to do with the new and blue sky.

“Reality” will remain somewhere inside those walls, counting itself while selling itself with frantic and complex determination. Meanwhile the disgruntled patrons scatter through the rain bearing the load of their obsession, with more vulnerability than before, but still barely aware of the reality of rain.

They do not see the light that shines with reflective beauty from the mirrored puddle, and which they themselves are walking on water with the same stars as above, or that they are running through the sky to catch a ride, on their way to a shelter somewhere in the Associated Press of an irritated social life.

But they do know that there is dampness abroad. Perhaps they even feel it. I cannot say. Their complaints are more often than not, mechanical and lacking spirit or soul, but every once in awhile comes a smile…

In Closing

Naturally no one may believe the things said about this rain today. It all implies one simple lie: only material is real. That weather, not being planned, not being fabricated, is impertinent, a blankness on the expression of progress. (Just a simple little operation, and its whole wet mess may become relatively tolerable. Let business make the rain that will give meaning to its meaning.)

They sit in their city and criticize the hardships of rain and of nature. I sit in my own little piece of wild and wonder about a world that has both, progressed and regressed, and vice versa. I have at one point or another guessed that I am part of what I thought I must escape. But I’ve learned upon this arid path that it is not a matter of escaping. It is not even a matter of speaking with a boisterous voice. It is a matter of soaking it all up and waiting til the surroundings in which I sit needs it to grow.

Industry is here. Utility is also here and both are here to stay. When the utilities of PG&E illuminate and warm my home, it is no one’s fault but my own. I admit it. I no longer kid anyone, not even myself, they keep me safe from their wild out here in my wild. They will suffer not from my bluff, and I will pay them their patronizing complacencies in the silence of this rainfall.

I will let them think they know what I am doing here in my own little wild. Let them call me a…

Suddenly, a light flips on, and behind it, scampering footsteps follow in the same delicate pattern that pitter-patters much like this rain. They fancy their way upon the window seal of my old broken soul.

They came heavy at first, but oh so gentle did they turn as genuine happiness approached, the kind of happiness that God’s magic was made of. The boy, for whom some of these words today have been written, was now awake, so therefore I must, we must, escape these thoughts, as it’s time to get him ready for the day.

And from his wise little mouth, the first spoken thoughts of this morning poured upon me like a stream of dampened light. A light so simple and pure, it put the darkness to bed.

“Dad, are we gonna play in the rain again today?”

“Soon enough kid, soon enough”

—BeLove

Somewhere To Be

And so it is now, this now is all there is, for in the moment is the only place we are truly meant to live.

Here I am, a sum of the parts of the man I once was, and the man I am to be. In this moment of truth, in these fragments that fall creative and free, I am still somewhat me. Though these words, sometimes construed, they are true, and they do carry me down this delightful path farther into the depths of me.

I’ve been thinking lately about the relationships that have grown on me, the ones I’ve yet to know, and those that have fallen away with time, with distance, and some with the misunderstanding of youthful exuberance, but most importantly the misunderstood parts of me. All of these relationships have played an imperative role in my life, like water saturating the roots of a tree.

I try not to confuse happiness with sadness, nor with regret. As this only confuses the issue even more. After it is all said and done, whether in his shoes, or her shoes, we all have our issues.

It is not the easiest thing to do at times, to not add to the confusion of the issues at hand. I’ll admit it. Though, I do not hold any regret that the uncertainty of things happened the way that they did, because it is the way things were meant to be.

I am more than aware and fully understand that I did have a choice in all of the matters that make up the landscape of me with these trials and tribulations so true. So I chose what I felt was needed to be felt, and I feel as though I acted as I should have acted in those moments that make up me.

And yes maybe I believe in fate a little too much. Perhaps I put too much pressure on the future, while still grasping at the purpose of my past.

It is more than likely not, or still even so, but insofar as I can tell there have been actions as small as the slightest glance of an unknown smile, the delicate laugh of an upset child, or a fleeting thought upon such an event as monumental as my very own death, they have pushed me in different directions oh so intricately. But you must see, all of these instances have placed me perfectly right here, right now, in the awareness of my very own clarity.

There was no other way to get here. This meandering, erratic, and crooked path of creativity has actually been the straightest of lines through my own mind, as I took the plunge into the creative core of me.

Take away these thousands upon thousands of somewhat organized words, thoughts I once thought of as direction, written with mistakes, sometimes poetic, even those with regret, and suddenly I am a different person with a different history, an entirely different future.

Yet to think like this takes away from said clarity. So I would have to hold it steady with the heavy load of regret because it would take away from where I am to be, that being here, in the now, and in the key of me. So instead let us not think of such things.

Still here I still stand, so very thankful for the joys and sorrows of life, because without them, it is here I might not be.

I am just as well blessed to know all of those I’ve known, and was honored to meet, some were mere acquaintances, some just passing by, and some still the best of friends, and for those I’ve yet to meet, I believe it’ll be so very sweet…

Yes it’s true, we never know what joy awaits us unless we believe that it does indeed wait for us somewhere upon shores of believing in yourself wholeheartedly. But we are only human and the sorrows of our past sometimes get the best of us all, and it becomes that much easier for us to fall. Still one must remember to smile when rising back up to stand oh so tall.

THE TAKEOUT

A man who might be full of sadness and regret, who might not give a damn, or who might, just might, remember that the future is inevitable and the past is gone. It is to realize this, wherein waits the joy that comes with not knowing what tomorrow may bring. But tomorrow does not belong anywhere if I’m not here, in this moment as we speak.

This is the meaning of my free. The freedom I have found in the creative waves of my own deep blue sea. The freedom to feel what I feel when I feel it, and to write it down on paper. To be real and stand up somewhat haphazardly yet with stability in a world where the illusion of normalcy is more often than not—awfully foggy.

Still it is my pleasure to share with you what I believe, whether or not, it’s with me you might agree, nor what you might think of me. I am me and that’s all I can be. You are free to see me however it is you please.

And now I see that every experience whether good or bad, has led me, or will lead me to where I need to be—at the very least eventually. Every single victory, every little losing streak and the simplest of mistaken identities have all led me right here to the creative edge of me.

So let us not be afraid to shake things up. And just as well, maybe jump, knowing we should not expect success, and the awakening of our wildest dreams to come to reality overnight. What is meant to be will come when the moment is right. It always does.

For the best things in life only happen when we least expect them. The universe has her ways. And everything you could ever want, or have prayed for, will come to parade before you, if you would only allow it to, without expecting it to.

So go on ahead, get lost, and maybe get lost again. Harness the wild within, and find yourself again, then again and again. Work hard, hustle harder, and don’t quit until you make yourself present with life and proud of who you are, in this now and all the more presently, where life is forever beckoning, and all the while Heaven waits patiently.

And so it is now, this now is all there is, for in the moment is the only place we are truly meant to live.

But for now if you would please excuse me, I have somewhere to be…

—BeLove

Depths Of Discovery

Without leaving himself, one grows with the vastness of the cosmic scope within; and yet: the farther one goes, the less he knows.

“Backwards and downwards,” the laughter and then the deep breaths, for long durations there had been nothing else. These were the only pieces of me left intact, or that I was able to find in my animated demeanor.

I sometimes felt like a memory of three words, carried by a broken down glory on the back of an empty pack of cigarettes. But it sufficed. The experience of life has been both essential and delightful in regards to the growth of me.

Over in the corner, on the fringe of awareness, the light still lingers; and in a flash of two memories colliding, my sensitivity to the light has somehow improved. 

In the beginning brightness had been all over the place and everywhere the same. It was a shining spectrum of silence, boundless but uniform. Essentially, it was without flaw, still indeterminate. And yet, while It remains all that It has forever been, it was as though the gentleness of bliss had been limited by the interpretation of an activity.

Poetry. 

The first time I finagled with the rhythm of rhyme, I felt like my soul was bouncing all over the place. Funny enough, it was when I first stepped off a plane in Colorado with the deepest cut by my side some twenty years ago. It’s true—every movement in genuine love is poetic, if not hallucinoginec.

This is how I behaved over the next few years. I was determined to stabilize myself from this exercise in spiritual growth and self-recollection from the grip of an adolescent lesson layered with love and loss, all the while doing it with a smile. I felt that the aim of poetry would saturate the deserted depths of my arid soul, only to revive the active connection between my self and the divine powers that Be. I felt that it helped to heal. I realized that it was, as it is that follows.

Poetry is an activity that is at the same time a pattern, a kind of living lattice of discovery; universal, infinitely complex, and exquisitely delicate.  A vast web of knots and divergences, of parallels and spirals, of intricate figures and their curiously distorted projections—all shining, active, and most importantly alive.

It was from then on, that first written poem, that I wanted to drape the world in the radiance of poetry, but I didn’t have enough material, nor the confidence to boot. My first attempt ended somewhere back in my twenties between my head and my heart. Sure poetry was lovely and generous, with its fields of gold. Still its goodness was the sort of goodness society had long considered out of date, so I gave it all up.

Besides, the radiance I wanted to deal in was an antiquated kind and in short supply throughout this shallow world. What I needed was a newfound radiance altogether, something a little more gorgeous and chivalrous that wouldn’t allow my imagination the time to pine away in the darkness of me. My imagination had to assert itself so that the art manifested the inner powers of my own nature, that which is love.

Without leaving himself, one grows with the vastness of the cosmic scope within; and yet: the farther one goes, the less he knows.

Then I found it again, that need for poetry, out west, a few years ago, this time it hit pretty close to home.

Does poetry have the power to pick you up in California and land you in sunny Salt Lake City a few hours later? Could it validate the distance between ourselves, and that, which lies ahead of us? Some think it has no such power. And nowadays public interest only grew wherever power did.

In the days of old, poetry was a force to be reckoned with. The poet had real romantic strength in the material world. Of course, the material was different then. Souls were still being wrapped in the fabric of divine magic, right up until the Industrial age slithered its greed around the heart and soul of mankind.

The romantic poets of society’s influence have always done what they were expected to do, they sprinkle beauty amongst the chaos, only to eventually give in to the pursuit. They chase ruin and death harder than they chase women. They set their talent ablaze, followed by a mental decline just before they reach home, and they dive headfirst down a slippery slope that slides upon a watery grave.

No, society is proud of its dead poets. Most everyone takes tremendous satisfaction in the poet’s self-taught testimony that reality is too tough, too big, too damn much; too awfully rigid with an expectation that bounces off the emotional checks and balances of a soul.

It is often thought that to be a poet is a school thing, a skirt thing, a church thing. The weakness of an unhinged spiritual prowess was proved in the childishness, madness, drunkenness, and despair of such marvelous martyrs.

So poets are loved, but loved because they just can’t make it here in the real world. We exist to loosen the grip on the feelings of experience by unraveling the tangled knots of life. We justify the cynicism of the hard-hearted men who say, “If I weren’t such a corrupt, unemotional piece of work, I couldn’t get through these times either. Look at these good, tenderhearted men, the best of us. The poor bastards perished by their own weakness, crazy sons of bitches.”

All the same, the desire of a poet will at times intersect at the corner of contradiction within himself. Maybe it’s an urge to be magical and cosmically expressive, shadowed articulate; to be able to approximate anything. Maybe it’s to be wise, philosophical, to find that common ground between the beauty of words, spirituality, love, and science, to prove that the animated emotions of the spiritual imagination are just as potent as any well-oiled war machine. Maybe it’s to believe in an ability to free and bless humankind with an unconditional love that spills from the light in the sky above.

But all the same, there in the shadows of his drive and desire, hides an inkling of expectation to be famous, and in this expectation of fame, there always hides a muse, a woman, there was always a woman behind the scenes.

Of course, it always came down to women. Freud himself believed that fame was pursued for the sake of the women. But the women were pursuing something else.

Everyone of us, both man and woman alike, are always looking for the real thing after being had and had by all the phonies. So we pray for the real thing and we rejoice when the real thing comes along. That’s why the world will always romanticize its love for poets. This is the bittersweet truth of poetry.

“Upwards and forwards,” I say silent to myself shadowed by a sudden glorified onslaught of distant laughter.

Once more a few lit fragments of self fall back to me—the same as they always were, but in some way associated, this time, with a particular light in the bright lattice of an intricate relationship, located somewhere in between what is right and what is wrong in the middle of me. It situates itself approximately on one of those little infinite nodes of intersecting alignment that shines from the core of all souls. I believe we can all agree from where in which I believe this light shines.

This pattern of intersection projects itself from another pattern, and within the other pattern I find another, larger fragment of me—a long lost memoir as a boy, scrambling out of the puddles of an adolescent ditch, wet and muddy to my knees in childlike poetry.  I shout at the shadow of a man above, “jump you chicken shit, just jump.” And as the shadow jumps, I hear a faint howl echo with laughter.

An indeterminable voice within my immediate surroundings introduces itself as gentle as possible to my contemplative state, startling both me, and my thought process awake.

“Ladies and gentlemen, please be seated and fasten your seatbelts, flight attendants please see that all tray tables are folded forward and seat backs are in the upright position, and that all overhead baggage is put away and bins are secure. We are clear for takeoff.”

Yes, it is true that a poet cannot perform societal open heart surgery, nor can he heave a bird of pewter steel thirty thousand feet in the air at seven hundred and seventy seven miles per hour, only to land soft, gentle and safe in good ole sunny Utah.

But he can damn sure die trying.

—BeLove

Soul Education

Could there be a greater miracle than for all of us to look through with consistency, the eyes of all others?

Life resides in learning to live on one’s own, spontaneous and footloose. To do this one must recognize what is one’s own—to be familiar and at home with oneself. This means basically learning who one is, and learning what one has to contribute to the growth of this fashionable world, and then learning how to make that contribution valid.

The purpose of creating is to show us how to define ourselves with authentic spontaneity in relation to the world around us. Though it is no longer authentic if one tries to impose a prefabricated definition of the world, as anything less than the capricious definition of the individual themselves.

The world is filled up with folks who are fully alive in it: that is, of the people who can be fully themselves in it and can enter into a living and cultivating relationship with each other in it.

The world is, therefore, more genuine in proportion as the people in it are able to be more humane and alive; that is to say, better able to make a lucid and conscious decision of what freedom truly is. This freedom must first of all coexist with the capacity to choose our own lives, by finding ourselves on the deepest possible level.

It is a superficial freedom to wander aimlessly here or there, to get a taste of this or that, to make the choice of certain distractions. This two-dimensional freedom is simply a sham.

It all claims to be a freedom of “choice” when in fact it evades the basic task of discovering who it is that chooses. It is not freedom because it is unwilling to run the risk of facing self-discovery.

The function of creating is, then, first of all to help the individual to educate and discover themselves: to recognize themselves, and to identify with whom it is that they choose.

This descriptive aspect of creativity will at once be seen as unconventional and, in fact, simple to most of society. To go further past the terms of outrageous, the function of creating is to help one’s own, as well as, maybe help other men and women save their souls and, and in so doing, maybe save something of society from itself.

From what you may ask? From the hell of meaningless arguments, of obsession, of complex artifice, of systematic lying, of criminal evasions and neglects, of self-destructive futilities.

It is now my hope that it is evident, to you the reader, that from my context above, I mean the following:

That the business of “saving” one’s soul means more than saving that of an imaginary object; and entrusting it to some institutional bank for deposit until we recover it with interest in Heaven. 

And that in speaking on the terms of a somewhat Christian existentialist, I mean by “soul” not as simply as the overthought Greek essential form but the mature personal identity, the creative fruit of an authentic, organic, and lucid discovery, the “self” that is found after other partial and exterior selves have finally been discarded as metaphoric masks.

This metaphor must not mislead: this inner identity is not “found” as an object, but is the very self that finds. It is lost when it forgets to find, when it does not know how to seek. Or when one seeks his soul as a material object. (Such a search via external avenues is futile and self-contradictory.)

Hence the paradox that we find when we stop seeking: and this is the point of creating. It is that when one learns to let his mind sit still and be what one has become, which is one that one does not know and never will he need to know.

This is when the miracle happens, when the paradox of life has reached maturity, we understand that to love is nothing more than a simple gesture of compassionate communication. Could there be a greater miracle than for all of us to look through with consistency, the eyes of all others?

It is when the imaginary “debts” are paid, one no longer seeks something else. One no longer looks to be told by another who one is. One no longer demands validation. One just does what they do and smiles at everything they love. After all, man is but a byproduct of everything he’s ever loved.

But there is the whole and infinite depth of what is remaining soon to be revealed. And it is not revealed to those who seek it from others. It is only revealed in the truth via self-discovery.

BeLove

A Little Light

Writing is, in effect, the act of validating the distance between us and the things surrounding us.

It was early in the morning, on a day long past, when I finally pushed away from self-doubt and started fighting with lead and words against this paper again. That morning I was triggered by a memory of something an old friend said to me some time ago. Like some refrigerated light of inspiration flickering in the dark, and as a shiver ran up my spine, I somehow managed to remember his advice word for word.

He said, “Writing is, in effect, the act of validating the distance between us and the things surrounding us. What we need is not necessarily sympathy, but more along the lines of a measuring stick.”

It was that morning I began scanning the world around me with measured intensity. This was almost three years ago. It was the year this so-called creative crisis began—three years spent abandoning one thing after another, all because of the elephant in the room.

Like a train plowing full steam ahead upon a burnt out bridge, I started casting out the freight, then the benches, then finally the poor old conductor, getting rid of the weight of everything while taking on nothing substantial at all.

Was this the right way? How and the hell I am supposed to know! Sure life is more or less abrasive like this, maybe more heroic, but I tend to get anxious when I envision what it will be like to be old and facing the task that waits beyond this life.

I mean, what may be left of me after they bury, or better yet, cremate my old and withering corpse? Either a box of bones I become, or not even a chard of bone. Maybe it is just specks of dust I am to be?

My friend used to say, “People with dark hearts have dark dreams.  Those whose hearts are darker, don’t know how to dream at all.”

The day I heard he had committed suicide, the first thing I did was look to the sun splattered sky and I closed my eyes. It hit me in that moment as I prayed; all the dreams he’d spoke of and saw in his sleep for thirty some odd years had vanished into thin air. Without a sound—poof—they were gone like an afternoon rain on some midsummer’s pavement. Why had he given up on his dreams and himself? Were his dreams still floating around, lost in the ethereal sense? I think so.

I have one last little thing to say about writing, before I walk deeper into my own wildest dream.

I find the act of writing very excruciating. I can go a whole month without coughing up a few beautiful words, or I go on a spree and write four nights and five days straight, only to realize that the whole purpose missed the mark.

All at the same time though, I adore the tenderness of writing, maybe more than I should. Scribbling poetic meaning to the inconsistencies in this life is a piece of cake compared to actually living it.

I think if I remember correctly, I was in my late teens when I discovered the delight of writing by way of poetry. In the sense of completeness, it blew my mind wide open. I barely spoke to anyone for weeks. If I could just keep my amusing thoughts about me, I felt, I could convince the whole damn world to fall in love with love again, while digging up and discarding intact systems of standards, and maybe even revise the movement of time.

Unfortunately for me, it took me twenty years to see that this was indeed, all the more me, deceiving me. Had I really let my emotions control and fool me for so damn long?

When at last, in recent days, I gathered something from the weight upon my shoulders. I took a blank notebook and drew a line smack dab down the middle of the page; then I listed all that I had gained from this standard on the left-hand side and all that I had lost on the right.

It turned out that I had lost so much more—things long abandoned, trampled under foot, sacrificed, betrayed—I had to turn the page to write them all down, even then, I ran out of empty space.   The only word found written on the left hand side was also written amongst the lost on the right hand side, with the simplicity of, “Me.”  And that in it self doesn’t sound as simple as it really is. 

There is a gulf that separates what we attempt to perceive from what we are actually able to perceive. It is so deep that it can never be measured, no matter how long our measuring stick is. But when in doubt, one must either shorten or lengthen the stick however they see fit.

What I can put down on this paper is nothing more than a list. It’s nowhere yet near a novel or even literature, nor is it necessarily art. It is just a notebook with a line drawn down the middle of it. Though it may contain suggestions of something moral, if you look hard enough.

But if it’s art or literature you’re interested in, I suggest you look to the Renaissance period, or that of the ancient Greeks. Pure art exists only in slave-owning societies. The romantics of old had slaves to till the fields, prepare their lunches and row their boats while they lay amongst sun-stamped atriums, composing poetry while being besieged by geometrical theories. At least that’s what they say art is.

I am starting to lean in to the belief that art and creativity are just us giving ourselves away to the slavery of our own soul. Which is not, by any means a terrible thing.

But if you’re the sort of person who raids the refrigerators of silent kitchens looking for something to snack on, or even just a little light in the dark, at three o’clock in the morning, then you can only write as appropriately as is seen fit.

That’s who I am and who I aim to be, just as soon as We can get control of this damned old train.

—BeLove

Branching Out

“You can, you should, and if you’re brave enough to start, you will.”

“There’s no such thing as a perfect piece of writing or poetry for that matter. Just as there’s no such thing as perfect despair.” So said a poet friend of mine I knew back in my adolescent years. He’s no longer with us on this spun little sphere. Well not in the physical sense. I miss him, more now than I did then. He was awfully real in a forsaken world full of fake.

It wasn’t until recently that I could grasp his full meaning, but even back then I found solace in his advice—there is no such thing as writing with perfection. 

All the same, I quailed whenever I sat down to write. The scope of what I could handle was just too limited. I could write all day about the elephant in the room, so to say, but when it came to the elephant’s trainer, I was prone to draw a blank. Writing needs that kind of built-in accessory of a subplot, wouldn’t you think?

I have been caught in the web of this particular writing bind for quite sometime—twenty plus years to be exact. Now color me crazy all you would like, but that is a very long time.

If one operates on the principle that everything that happens to us can be considered a learning experience, then of course life needn’t be so damned painful. That’s what they tell us, anyway. Life though, has a way of letting pain dictate the steps in which we take.

From the day since I have picked up this pen, time and time again, I have done my best to live according to that philosophy. As I result, I have been swindled and misjudged, used and abused, day in and day out. I am though, one hundred percent guilty of doing the same, if not worse, to others. I have also done my fair share of returning these favors, in my own shameful way.

And yet still, it has brought about many strange, distorted, and wonderful experiences. All sorts of people have told me their stories, some I’ve tried to figure out on my own accord. Then they left, never to return, as if I were no more than a bridge they were crawling across to get to where they were so desperate to go.

I, however, have kept my mouth sealed shut.  And so these stories have stayed with me over the years until I have found myself sitting here today, walking out, not necessarily wound free, but happily, from my very own existential crisis.  

The time though, has come to shake it all off and tell my story.

This doesn’t mean, by any means, that I have resolved even a single one of my problems, or that I will be somehow different when I finish. There is a very good chance I haven’t changed at all.

In the end, writing is not always an overeager step toward self-healing, it is in my opinion, an infinitesimal step, a very exploratory move in said direction of promise. But in order to get to where I am to be—with writing I must lean into honesty.

All the same, writing with the bittersweet taste of honesty is very grim. The more I start to write honest with myself and my words, the farther we may slip into darkness, but of the dark, it is true, the only way out is through.

Don’t take this as an excuse. I promise you—I’ve been telling the story as best I have known how, and this I will continue to do. But there will always be more to add to it.

A story, like life, is much like a tree. Branches grow, and branches must be cleared. They keep growing and you must keep trimming. Some will branch out farther than you could imagine, and those are sometimes better off left to grow.

I can’t help thinking with hints of confidence—if all goes well, a time may come, years or even decades from now, when I will come to discover that my self was somehow salvaged and redeemed from these articles of my life.

The elephant in the room will then return to the veldt, and it is of my hope, that I may tell the story of the world through my very own eyes with words far more beautiful than I could have ever imagined.  

So with that being said, sit back, relax, and settle on in.

It’s time this story begins.

—BeLove

After Life

“In every waking man, death dreams asleep.”

At this particular moment I must, almost in the delivery of a confession, without conviction, say that I do not consider that my birth began my original existence. Not yours. Not anyone’s. 

On creative grounds, if on nothing else alone, I cannot accept the view of death taken by most everyone, and taken by myself for most of this life—on creative grounds I am therefore obligated to oppose that something so extraordinary as a human soul can be wiped away forever.

No, our dead are about us, shut off only by our metaphysical denial of them. It is as we lie nightly in our own little astral hemispheres asleep by the billions, our dead approach us in our dreams, sharing certain ideas upon the spectrum of our souls. It is possible that the dead may consider these ideas to be their nourishment.

And maybe, just maybe, it is that by seeing these ideas in our dreams come to life is all they really want in the realm of Eternity.  And just like this particular idea of mine, all of our ideas could be considered as these sort of fallen leaves that maturity transforms within us as we approach the autumn of our lives.  

Our souls are fields of fallen leaves that cover this life with layers of metaphor and spirituality. And there are times when we may find ourselves barren with boredom, and instead of getting creative to pass the time, we starve these ideas of our dreams with the aridity of our own doubt. We let them dry up and wither away, which yields our dead from ever harvesting the sweetness of life again, and this our dead do not like.

And for some of us, the time comes in our life that we burn a lamp upon our fields of ideas so that our dreams may set our soul ablaze.  It is damn near dreadful to think of waiting for our dreams to illuminate our natural lives with all that is love and light. Especially when time has become of the essence of all that is oh so precious. So instead of think, one must light the flame in the cavern of their soul and see what shows itself.

It is by setting fire to our souls we see that the flames of divine love burn on the pyre of fervor, as our wildest dreams come to life. This is the ethereal eagerness of creative development, that burning of the mind that wipes the slate clean kind of thing.

But to take a seat and watch this short little life pass us by without looking to leave behind some kind of mark is to invite death on our way to rock bottom, only to shorten the timing of its demanding pursuit.

Don’t kid yourself though; the dead are with us, protecting us, living with us in our dreams, and within our hearts they live through us.  They are always watching over us on this spun little sphere, which is our institute of freedom.  In the next frontier, things are much more cosmic and clear; the kind of wide-open clarity that eats into freedom with a certain balance of bliss.

We are free on this earth because of cloudiness, because of human error, and because of marvelous contradiction of law and limitation. It is as much because of beauty and goodness as it is because of the blindness of evil. These have always gone hand and hand with freedom. Good and evil, like life and death, are two sides of a coin placed long ago in the mouth of the Departed.

If we lived only one of our days to the fullest, filled with consciousness and goodness, we would find the density of an entire lifetime in the simplicity of one day.  But we have become so intricately dispersed with our distracted recreations that natural life must allow us tens of thousands of days so that we may finally come to understand…

“In every waking man, death dreams asleep.”

But there is hope for us yet, and it sleeps in the possibility to be more profound than we were long before and way beyond that of good and evil. 

For now though that is all I have to say about this matter. The songbirds are rustling in the distance, the sun soon to waken. Besides, all of these thoughts about a dream of death are likely to be nothing but a waste of breath, and now the time has found me in a hurry, under such pressure—all this unfinished business.

BeLove

Passing By

The best thing to do with solitude is to play it cool, but today something is heating mine up.

The sky is silver and warm. There is a patch of bare aspen at the bottom of the valley.  The dying limbs sing their song with the wind that can be heard even up here. I hear a machine, a bird, and a clock. The clouds bloom astronomical and cosmic.  Through them the inevitable airliner passes.  It’s undoubtedly full of commuters from San Francisco to Salt Lake.  

What kind of commuters? This I have no need to decide. They are out of my world, way up there, sitting busy in their isolated, arbitrary lounge that doesn’t even seem to be on the move—the lounge that somehow picked them up off the earth in California to suspend them for awhile with instant coffee and timeless cocktails just to bring them back down to earth in sunny Utah.   It’s mere and marvelous, the suspension of contemporary life in contemplation that delivers you somewhere. 

There are other worlds high above me.  Other planes pass over, with more contemplation and complex modalities of concentration.  

I see the armed plane, the warship of the sky with the bomb in it.  It flies lower than the rest.  I look up from the wild, in the direction of the closed bay.  It’s but a pewter-steeled crow pregnant with eggs of destruction below its breast.  A womb easily and instinctively opened by lack of patience!  I do not consider this technological beast to be related to anything I believe in. Much like everyone else, I live in the shadows of these apocalyptic cherubs.

 It is more or less likely that we are being surveyed by it, on an impersonal level.  Its number distinguishes my number.  Are our numbers preparing at some point to correspond in the benign mind of a supercomputer?  Should this concern me, though I live in the solitude of my own soul, out here in the wild, as a reminder that I am free enough to not be given a number?

This is, and there always has been, in fact, a choice.

BE YOU

In an age where there is so much conversation about “being yourself” I reserve to myself the right to forget about being myself, since in any case there is a very vague chance of my being anyone else.  Rather it begins to seem to me that when I am too intent on “being myself” I run the risk of impersonating my own shadow.

Still I cannot pride myself on the freedom of being me, simply because I am living in my own wild.  Should I come to be accused of living in the wild like John Muir, instead of living in the desert like John The Baptist, all I would be able to answer is that I choose not to live “like anyone.” Or “unlike anyone.”  We all love somehow or the other and that is that. It has become a compelled necessity for me to be free to embrace the necessity of the soul of my wild, or in other words, my very own nature. 

I exist under the canopy of a forest wild.  I walk through the woods of myself out of necessity. I am both prisoner and escapee of my own prison. I cannot necessarily tell you why, born in Mississippi, my journey has led me to the foothills just east of Lake Tahoe in western Nevada, the perfected beautiful fusion of both desert and wilderness. I have considered going further, but it is not certainly practical.  It makes no difference.  

Do I have a “day?” Do I spend said “day” in a “place?”  I know these trees here.  I know the birds here.  I know the birds in fact very well; there are precise pairs of a dozen different species chirping in the immediate surroundings of my own expanse.  I share this expanse with them, forming this landscape of ecological balance.  The harmony alone from this gives inspiration to the idea of “home” as a new pattern. 

As to the crows, they form part of a different pattern.  They are strident and self-justifying, like man.  They are not two, they are many, and they are brash with vulgarity.  They fight amongst each other and the other birds in a constant state of war.

BE FREE

There is a mental ecological expanse, too, a living balance of spirits in this corner of my wild. There is room here for so many more songs besides those of the birds.  Of compassion, for instance, or hope, energy, maybe essence, or a newfound delight, or it may just be the dry confusing voice of myself, a half-assed poet with windy promise.   

There is also love, whose climate is perhaps most suited for the climate in this corner of my woods, hot and humid, damn near smothering at times.   It is a climate though that doesn’t warrant a need for explanation.  

It is a good thing to find these feelings deep in these woods, to hear these songs in my own wild, but they also choose themselves to be here in the present in my silence.  In any case, there is no lack of feelings. 

Solitude is cool.  It is a self-sufficient feeling of low definition in which there is little to decide, in which transactions are few and far between, if not non-existent. There are no packages to be delivered, nor do I bundle up packages and deliver them to myself.  There is no intensity.  There is no give and take of questions and answers, problems and solution.  Only prayer.  Problems begin down the hill.  Over there under the waterfall at the fork in the path you will find the solutions.  

BE REAL

Here there are woods, and wolves. Here there is no need for rose-colored glasses.  “Here” does not look to warm itself up with references to “there.”  It is just a “here” for which there is no “there.”  Solitude is cool, calm, and collected.

Community as a whole is a fiery core.  Fiery with words like “must,” “ought,” and “should.”  Community is devoted to high definition projects—“making it all so clear!” The clearer it gets the more clarity must be had.  It branches out.  You have to keep clearing out the branches.  The more branches you clear out the more branches grow.  For each one you cut, back grow four or five more.  On the end of each branch is a big bright-eyed and bushytailed question mark.  

People are running all around with branches of meaning everywhere.  Each to their own is very concerned and anxious to know whether all of the others have received the latest message.  Has someone else received a message that he has not received? Will they be able to pass it on to him? Will he understand it when passed on? Will it be necessary to argue about it? Will he be expected to clear his throat and stand up and say, “Well the way I look at it is my…. way?”  

The best thing to do with solitude is to play it cool, but today something is heating mine up.  They keep thinking that you have a unique message. When they find out you haven’t…Well, that’s up to their interpretation and worry.  Not mine.  I’ve got my own war to win inside.

-BeLove