The Paths We Walk Are Riddled with Chips of Stone

Steps We Walk

Stumble and fall
Stumble and fall.
repeat process until
shins are splintered like
twigs twisted and torqued
against the the thigh
and snapped.
Everything needs to be
brought down to size
now and again.
We’ve tripped and fallen
so many times
we’ve forgotten what
upright feels like and
that’s kind of sad
until we realize we
still have the strength
to keep walking towards
the next flight
of stairs to take us
higher than we imagined
possible.

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The Dormant Dreamer [Anywhere but here]

Run away

Sometimes, amidst the dark, I forget how to dream.

Go back and read some older posts. I challenge you to read beyond the face value and the convenience of reading the first few lines of this, writing it off, and going elsewhere on the interweb. You’ll see that I used to be someone who felt and thought and sometimes even dreamed. And I don’t mean the ghosts that haunt me in my sleep sometimes or the happy dreams that make me hate my existence when I wake up because those dreams I have no control over. Beyond the occasional inspiration, they’ve gotten me nothing but a crack that runs even further down the walls of my heart. My eyes? They’re harder to keep dry some nights.

I feel like i have to downplay how I feel to everyone, including my therapist because, as much as I dislike how I feel this time of year, I”m so used to it that I have all but given up. And I don’t want more medication; it’s hard enough to take the ones I have already.

Something happened. Somewhere between starting and finishing my bachelor’s degree I became this recluse. I spend my time hiding in my bedroom watching old TV shows on Netflix or I try and find random things to keep myself entertained. Before that I used to have friends and we used to go out to the bar or a coffee shop or… something. I was meeting new people all the time. Where did all those people go? They’re all married or have kids now which is fine but is this how life is supposed to feel for those of us who haven’t figured out how to find someone that doesn’t kill them slowly on the inside? I don’t know. I have reached that point again where the idea of a relationship both scares me to death and pisses me off.

I don’t want to give up my independence or my space. It’s both a gift and a curse and if you don’t understand I’m not going to explain it to you.

There are so many things I wanted to do and there aren’t that many people approaching 30 who care about the kind of stuff that I care about. I want to be in a band, I want to write a book, I want to not spend every night in my room. I’ve been told I’ve got to go out there and I’ve got to make the connections because no one’s talking to anyone. If that’s the case then why does it seem everyone’s talking to everyone but me? That may sound like self-pity and it very well may be. At the same time, my anxiety has only gotten worse with time which makes social gatherings really difficult and I feel like any friend I make quickly becomes fair-weather or ceases to be my friend just because I don’t want to be what they want me to be.

I’m not a savior, i’m not just some idea. I gave up being perfect a long time ago and now I’m just trying to get along with just being me. Even that is a struggle some days. Most days. I think too much, I know too much and I can’t let go of the girl who dumped me 6 months ago because, emotionally, she took a piece of me and I can’t get it back. So, when I hear the song “Mullholland Drive” by The Gaslight Anthem, she’s the first thing I think of [“When you think about your life, are there things you would reverse?”].

It has struck me that, maybe, I should just start over. Sometimes, I feel like there’s nothing here for me anymore and I could leave and the only people who would probably even say anything are my family. I should just uproot myself and go to Grad School in Chicago like I planned to and find people there and maybe I wouldn’t feel so out of place, so distanced from everything and everybody. All I’ve really got here is a handful of friends, family and a job.

The dormant dreamer inside me wants a whole lot more than that. If I could wake him maybe things would be better. I’ve considered giving Omaha a year since I’ve just signed a lease on an apartment. I don’t know. I’m not usually one for ultimatums but if something good doesn’t happen soon I may just give up entirely and run away somewhere.

Anywhere but here.

Between Black&White

A man walks down the street,
watching his steps cross the
cracks in the concrete, all the while
missing the rhythm of life,
“normal life” they say, by
just a fifth of a second and
he thinks he knows things
but sometimes he’s never quiet
sure.
Well, there are times when
he clings to the vines that
hold him firm to the things
that never falter or fade.
But even then, sometimes,
he can feel his hands start to
slip.
And though he grinds his teeth
and, jawclenched, he tries
to hold on tight…
he falls.
But he continues to walk,
right in front of left, eyes
never failing to glare only at
the cracked pavement and debris
his feet walk over.
Looking neither left nor right
just onward.

And it was on this path
that he ran into me
head first into my chest as I was
busy eyeing a woman with
candy apple red hair and a black dress…
The impact was enough to
rattle my balance and in
compensating and preventing a fall
I spilled my cup of coffee down the
gutter to my left.
Anger swept over me like forest fire
madness, but I saw the kid’s eyes,
cold blue antarctica, carved out of ice,
surrounded by white, cracked red and
accented by the bags under his eyes.
They told of a great weight that sat
invisible on his hunched shoulders
I took a breath

Who are you, kid?
“Empathy and apathy, a great dichotomy.
Seeker of grace and failure of faith.”
He spoke to my shoes
What’s is this weight you seem to
carry?
“If ever there was a heart that had
grown used to breaking, I’ve got it.
With every passing moment of life,
I am the griefcarrier, the crossbearer,
the sympathy in a world where hope
is the only thing that keeps me going
sometimes. Sometimes…”
He looked me in the eyes which were blue
but in the next moment an emerald green.
” I am the envy of all the things you have
but can never be because I’m too foolish
and too hard-hearted to follow through.
I am the poison you should have drank
and the antidote for what ails you
because you, you think you’ve got it all
figured out and your rational thinking
will set you free…”
His eyes drained of color, turned to stone
and I went cold.
“But your hope for freedom are the very
chains that bind you”
Shocked, I shuddered and wondered
aloud one final question.

How is it that you know so much about me?
He laughed, sick and desperate.
“Close your eyes and shake that question
from your head.
You are so entangled in your own web of
self-absorption that you don’t even recognize your own–”
Reflection.
I was face to face with a man with sullen eyes
I raised my hand and he mimicked my actions
perfectly.
An office building, mirrored windows,
and me,
locked eye-to-eye, face to face.
Antarctica… emerald…
and now just shades of grey
between black and white.