That moment before the night turns to morning. Wind on my face. This city is ours. Steady hand. Perfectly reminiscent of something so long ago. And it smells of smoke. visions of cedar embers dance in the mind. Elation. Face sore from smiling. It won’t last and we won’t care. Because, for this moment, there is nowhere else we’d rather be.
Gods in our own rights
So incredibly fortunate to have been born into this role
And still we cry when our creations cease to be what we had hoped
So cry and try not to be beautiful
You will never succeed
Skin and bone
Meat and blood
So many images of one
Gods in our own right
It has been said the idea of a soulmate is antiquated and unrealistic. A few women I’ve met in recent history have expressed the idea that there are several men with whom they could share their lives and be happy. I suppose the argument against a soulmate puts logic over superstition. At the same time, I’ve witnessed love’s ability to make us blind, to inebriate us to the point of elation, to the point where we don’t care to see the potential flaws in a relationship because the benefit far out ways the risk. I’d like to think the other person in such a relationship is what some would call the other’s soulmate. It’s not that the two could never be happy with anyone else, but rather, that the two could not envision being happy with anyone else. Further, that the two were fated to be because they chose to be. To wrap our minds around such an idea, we may need to view time as an infinite, rather than a line. If time does not move from one end of a line to the other, if there are endless possibilities, with endless outcomes, then we are simultaneously not fated to be with one individual and have always been with that one individual. If the passing of time is an illusion of the human mind, I am and will always be with her. I ache for the day I meet her and I will not settle for anyone who is not her. I know of the magic of romantic love, because I have lived it. As much as I’ve thrown away, I continue to pray for my next hit, for the opportunity to feel that invincible again. With eyes to the sky, a son of Pi, sending up a flair over a dark ocean.
“But the proles, if only they could somehow become conscious of their own strength. would have no need to conspire. They needed only to rise up and shake themselves like a horse shaking off flies. If they chose they could blow the Party to pieces tomorrow morning.”
Tools used to keep the proles unconscious of their own strength: religion, distraction, division, medication, ignorance, and fear.
Tools the proles may use to awaken themselves: free-thought, focus, unification, sobriety, education, and love.
I think faith can be means to awakening. But religion mangles faith into these prepackaged forms. To say I am (insert religious philosophy here), strips me of my responsibility to search for my own personal truth. Religion has been means to restricting our behavior. When we adhere to these predesigned forms of faith, we give their creators the power to shape our behaviors and even our thoughts. To those who are not avid readers, the quote above is from George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four. The Proles, in this piece, were the working class. My intention in this post, is to compare Orwell’s proletarians (proles) to the working class of our society. There would seem to be a lot attempting to keep us in our places, asleep. But we have the tools to awaken ourselves. I see all of this hate in our world, all of this deliberate ignorance, and think we have to do something to change.
Not long ago, a female friend expressed disappointment in the fact that her ex-boyfriend didn’t fight for her to stay. It has always been my understanding that, when a woman says she doesn’t want to be with me, it is my job to respect her desires. The last time a woman told me she didn’t want to see me anymore, she seemed to want me to say something. I had nothing more to say. I was disappointed, but felt as though attempting to persuade her to reconsider would be unfair. She knew what she wanted and I had to give it to her.
There has been a lot of talk recently over what constitutes sexual harassment. I recently heard a woman explain the difference in sexual harassment and welcome flirting is consent. I envision myself talking to woman in whom I’m interested: “May I flirt with you?”. What if this question is unwelcome? Would that be harassment? I know this sort of thing comes naturally to many humans. As an alien, I tend to err on the side of caution.
Surely expressing interest is not the same as engaging in sexual harassment. Then again, whether expressing interest is justifiable would largely seem to depend upon any power dynamic. If I express interest in a subordinate at work, she may feel pressured to reciprocate. But, if she is interested already, expressing interest, may be viewed as romantic. It says “I’m willing to risk my job to at least let you know how I feel.”
It would appear a lot of what differentiates between sexual harassment and romanticness is how the pursuit is received by the pursuee. Earlier today, I found myself watching Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. Why the writers of the Indiana Jones series decided to follow Mary-Ann with Willie is beyond me. They replaced a self-reliant, badass woman with a whiny, needy, damsel in distress. In one of the very last scenes, Willie tells Dr. Jones she is through with him and will find her own way to Deli. As she walks away, Indiana throws his whip around her and drags her back to him. She responds with a passionate kiss. And the village cheers at the man’s victory over his woman’s will! I see feminist favoring the Nazi in The Last Crusade over Willie.
Of course there is a great difference in fiction and reality. Maybe we can accredit this interaction to Willard Huyck or George Lucas and not Gloria Katz. But stories said to be some of the most romantic to have ever been told involve a man’s pursuit of an uninterested woman. And again, how can I gain permission without at least expressing interest? Maybe we just need to be more understanding of each other. If I express interest and you do not reciprocate, I should back off. If I promise to do this, can you promise to not be offended when I express interest without permission to do so?
This is my PC poem
Don’t read between the lines
There is no deeper meaning
But at least it almost rhymes
This is my neutral poem
It is neither wrong nor right
It is not controversial
It is not day or night
This is my flaccid poem
It is impotent as can be
shi pi fu cu co…
This is my PC poem
This is my neutral poem
This is my flaccid poem
It is everything it should be
It is nothing it could be
And it is absolutely not me
In hotel breakfast area when I spot a piece of scrap paper on the buffet table in front of me. The paper bears my handwriting. I review the paper with puzzlement then pull out my phone with the aim of documenting this. I hold up my phone; the camera is zoomed way in and the lens is pointed to a space just above the scrap of paper. I move the camera down to find the paper is covered by some other hand-held electronic device. I pull the camera aside and move this new electronic device down. The paper is not the one I saw moments before. This paper is one I’ve kept in my wallet. It has contact info: addresses and phone numbers of loved ones. Frantically, I review the page in an attempt to find the writing I’d seen moments before. I turn the page over to find nothing. Now there are several blank scraps of paper. I dig through them. Now some of them are bills of currency: tens and twenties. The bills are rolled up and stuffed into a cassette-tape case…
I awake breathing quick, shallow breaths.
I learned today that there is a warrant out for my arrest. Of course I did stupid things in high school, but I honestly didn’t know of what crime I was accused. I hadn’t thought about it since I was 20. I was visiting my parents in Boerne, TX and was detained by local police while they searched my vehicle. They said I had a pending felony warrant out of Austin and were waiting on confirmation. After accusing me of huffing the touch-up paint for my car and detaining me for 2 hours, they let me go on my way. This morning, a friend sent me link to an online warrant registry. There is was: Phil Force – Wanted on felony obstruction of justice in Austin, TX. On Monday, 02/05/18, I will enter the police station at 715 E 8th St and identify myself to the clerk. From there, who knows what will become of me. If prison is the destination, I don’t know I will allow my body to arrive as scheduled. My purpose here is to help others. When I find myself taking more than I am giving, it is time to end my stay on this planet.
I dreamed I was put in charge of a street observatory. It was my job to ensure star seekers were given the opportunity to see stars. Visitors would bring stars they had birthed with which to light up the sky. We each reveled in the beauty of the others’ stars. A star seeker would toss a star into the space above the street and we each added our own to fill in the sky. We lit up the street with our own creations. And I felt at peace – grateful for the opportunity to see all of these wonderful stars and grateful to be able to show my own. On occasion, a visitor would bring a sun. These suns out-shown any other stars in the sky. As it was my job to ensure star seekers were able to see the stars, I often found myself redirecting these sun holders, asking them to keep their suns under cover and, when these redirections failed, asking them to leave the street observatory. This was not in my nature, as I appreciated all stars, even those that were way too close and burned. But, with the support of other star seekers, we made it work. Then a sun holder by the name of Ehs began frequenting the observatory. Ehs’ solar flares made it difficult for star seekers to see the stars. As Ehs’ solar flares burned anytime I attempted to shield them, I quickly became weary of engaging. What was once a most enjoyable experience for me, became a chore. And, although it had been fun for me, I knew it was my duty to block my new friends’ eyes from Ehs’ sun. If I failed to do so, the street observatory would die. So there I was, renewing my promise to my fellow star seekers to help let their stars shine and asking for them to help me to do so. They knew it wasn’t in my nature to block the light of any star, even one close enough to be called a sun. But time will tell if I have the strength to keep my promise.