Thursday, August 6, 2015

I dreamt of Japan again last night.  Its becoming a regular occurrence.  The culture, the demeanor, the places, the people.  It is the single trip I've taken that has left such a deep impact on my soul.  It is different in such a way that it cannot be properly relayed to others who have never experienced the neat dichotomy of old and new.

In my dreams I'm wandering the streets of Tokyo with my girl.  The barrier of language is still present but in the dream, as in reality, it is of little consequence to everyday existence in the city.  It only becomes more apparent when you get out to the countryside with its sprawling forests and fields and houses that look like they were the meticulous work of a master craftsman.  But even then, the people are friendly and helpful and only slightly wary when they catch a glance at your tattoos.  In the dream I'm navigating the small side streets and pathways, stopping into the tiniest of stores to take a brief respite from the throngs of people in the street.  I'm sitting in a cafe, with no hope of ordering an espresso but every intention of finding something that speaks to that deeper level.  The subversive layer that is what draws me to the city in the first place.  There is a calm. There is a peace. There is a way of life that cannot be found in my home country.

We settle into a small 5 seat noodle bar.  The locals translate for us the writing on the machines that take your order.  The friendly but intense man behind the bar is busy plying the only trade he's ever known.  Its what you came for anyway.  Coins are exchanged, which is the most surreal thing to an American.  The dance resumes.

We're walking down a pathway ringed with trees.  The branches and flowers given the reverence generally reserved for a botanical garden.  Everything here is treated with such reverence.  It is shockingly solemn.  The edges begin to fade and the conscious world starts to creep back in.  I hold on to it for a few more seconds, content with the fact that I know I will return.  If only on another night, in another dream.

You can experience culture shock anywhere.  Even from within the confines of the continental United States from one region to another.  However, it is truly a marvel to experience reverse culture shock.  Such as the type that makes you look at your own world in a completely different light.  The world you have always known and resided in seems a bit different. Strange.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

You Left a Note in Your Perfect Script

We met in a room with too many chairs and not enough people
Discussing literary ideas and sharing bad poetry
The notebooks and dreams long since faded and forgotten
Yet I am still sitting here replaying those looks and subtle glances
In my mind
In the time it took to find myself
I've become whole and self-aware
Meaningful flights of fancy have returned
And brought with it a sense of calm

Do you want to start over
And rebuild our cities from the twigs and leaves on the ground floor
Forget the memories of the past and the delicate whisper of our tendency to burn
For us to find a new lover's storm
Its as simple as one genuine spoken word
Let's run wild and reckless as we discover the enormity of our minds
We've got all the time of one who doesn't care for sleep
Content to wander
Spouting honest sentiments and concise prose
We will keep going until our bodies concede defeat


Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Abyssum

I am in an odd mood today.  A very solitary disposition.  The thoughts and feelings in my head are analogous to a long and drunken stroll down a cramped alley.  The cold stone walls scraping against my arms as I meander in an out of the little alcoves that only a massive sprawling city can provide.  My strides are zig-zagging in pattern and my pace is sluggish and methodical.  The tiny signs and windows beckon to me with untold adventures and stories behind each door.  I do not stop, however, as I am in search of something.  I am seeking something hidden and imperative in these lost alleyways.  These long-forgotten roads where only the inebriated or the dangerous dare to tread.  I find myself drawn to the shadowy recesses along the passageways.  There are unknown entities in those places that seek me out as well, call to me with voices heavy with the passage of time.  Maybe, just maybe, these are the things I seek out as well.  

Monday, February 24, 2014

PaenitentiaE

Cruelty, in all of its sanctimonious splendor, comes in many guises.  It takes different forms and wears disparate masks.  No two cruel acts or words are ever quite the same yet they all share something intrinsic in common.  There is a deep rooted desire to twist and bleed.  To bludgeon and leave battered and broken.  At the heart of cruelty lies victory.  A vanquishing of the foe, even if that foe takes on a subconscious quality.  It is for this very reason that I understand cruelty so well and am able to see the nature of it through all of the extraneous layers.  I understand cruelty because I am inside, a callous and barbarous person.

"For in the moment when I truly understand my enemy, understand him well enough to defeat him, then in that very moment I also love him." 

This realization has long eluded me.  I have chased it through the depths of myself.  Even upon catching it and acknowledging the truth of that essence, I turned away.  It was a truth that I could not endure, even when faced with it in stark and honest words.  It was too much bear.  My cruelty did not take the form of physically inflicting pain upon another.  It did not come in the form of breaking another down without regret or remorse.  My cruelty manifested itself in duplicity and cunning.  In cynicism and disdain.  My nature, the nature that I thrived on yet never took the time to understand, was that of detachment and emotional dissonance.  It carried me through on wings that breathed life into my soul and mercilessly pummeled those below who fell prey to the bone-like feathers.  Remorse was a concept that went unexplored.

The road back to redemption from a place such as this is wild, inhospitable, and almost non-existent.   It is less a road and something more akin to Mt. Everest, with steeps and crags that know no ends.  It is a road that I find myself on currently.  Ironically, this path is littered with various types of cruel words and acts.  The ultimate comeuppance for one such as myself.  It is long and arduous and I am unsure if I will be able to successfully navigate the many tricks and turns.  The path stretches above and below me with a desolate stillness.  My own personal Man in Black beckons and I wonder if the road I'm on isn't the road I was supposed to be on all along.

"No, you don't understand.  I destroy them.  I make it impossible for them to ever hurt me again.  I grind them and grind them until they don't exist."

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

À Rebours

It has begun.  The great wind of change that began to blow recently has finally swept me up in its clutches.  I am at the epicenter of a churning tornado of thoughts and ideas, words and emotions culminating in one great shining example of chaos.  Grandiose changes.  Deep ley lines running to the very core of my being.  It has begun and I am unable to resist the pull of the torrential winds. 

I have begun work on my book. 


Let it all commence.





Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Machiavelli fades

I dreamt of you last night.  Vivid and wild dreams of the life that could have been.  Dreams that wandered in and out of my subconscious.  You were there, you were always there.  Talking to me in a sweet, kind voice.  Whispering words of hope and encouragement.  You were there.  I held your hand and you stared deep into my eyes.  I saw you.  Really saw you.  You know me, you are one of the only ones who knows me.  Sees behind that mask I wear all the time.  I opened myself to you in the dream and you did not judge.  You did not invade, bruise, scar, demand.  You were there for me as no one has ever been before.  I woke during the dream, my heart full and my head swimming.  I shed a tear, which was the most surprising thing.  I went back to sleep and immediately found myself in the dream again.  You were still there, waiting for me.  We walked and talked for what felt like hours.  Your voice always small and gentle.  Your eyes always loving and caring.  I took you to meet my family, which again was surprising.  They loved you as I love you.  We traveled together and saw all of the places I've always wanted to see.  You showed me your world and your past and I showed you mine.  It was as if the world bent and scraped to meet our every whim and desire.  I was everything that you wanted.  Needed.  You were all that I have not known that I needed.  You were my star.  My xibalba.  My beginning.  My end.  You were always the one even if I never knew it.

I woke.  The melancholy was overwhelming.  I wanted to go back to that place so desperately.  I know I am unable to fully recall all that was said and done during the dream, but the overwhelming feeling stayed with me.  I strained to recall every detail so that I may live in that one moment for as long as I can.  I can still smell the smells and feel the wind.  I can still taste the emotion.  It was palpable.  It was real.  As real to me as the sun in the waking world.

You were there.  You were always there.  I just never knew it was you.      

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Proelium

The small over-crowded room smells of sweat and testosterone, that overwhelming gym smell that many associate with aggression. However, here it is different. In this room the smell is laced with the undercurrent of booze and blood. The colors of the room shift violently from blue to red and back again. The roar and hum of the crowd is barely audible above the wailing guitars and crashing cymbals. The music pulses and breathes with a life of its own while every person in the room moves as if in the deep throes of an inexplicable trance. The sweat drips down my face and tastes of battle and victory. I look to my left and see an immovable wall of people, many sporting battle wounds and bloody faces. The view to my right is no different. I am in the middle of a sea of carefully controlled chaos and violence. And I love every second of it.

It has been over a year since I had been to a metal concert. That duration, which bordered on unimaginable, was ended when I attended the Deceiver of the Gods tour this past weekend in Tempe. It was a glorious show which featured two of my favorite bands and one band that I came to enjoy immensely. The night was full of speed, death and progressive metal which delivered on every level of enjoyment. The show itself was held in a small club which made for a wholly different concert experience than I am accustomed to. It was exceptional.

I try and attend as many concerts as I am able to every year. However, this past year has seen me only attend one show so this concert was a welcome event. I am very comfortable at metal shows as I am used to all that they entail. The mosh pit is a world of its own full of specialized rules and etiquette. For the most part it is a place of good natured aggression and brutality. I have loved going in the pit since I was young as it was a great place to expend some of that testosterone to a thundering soundtrack. I’ve always enjoyed the raw reality of the pit. The unarmed combat is intoxicating and mildly euphoric. That being said, I have been in only a couple of mosh pits where the level of violence escalated into an outright riot in the crowd. This show was reaching that level of frenetic energy and unadulterated savagery. I was surprised by this as it was such a small show, it was unexpected. The crowd whipped and churned as if a storm itself was brewing in the midst of it. It was quite a sight to behold.

As I staggered out of the show somewhere around midnight I surveyed my condition. Possible broken nose, bruised ribs, cuts on my arms, and a large pendant-shaped bruise on my chest. Soaked in sweat and smelling of vodka I walked out of the club and inhaled the cold fresh air. Glory hung in the air. I immediately regretted bringing the motorcycle to the show as the Harley rumbles something fierce and my battle wounds were more than a bit sensitive at that moment. But it was no matter as the brisk ride home further invigorated me. I was alive and I was victorious!

Not a bad night’s work overall.