Monday, November 28, 2011

Old Flames X: Borne Into The Sea

I was borne into the sea, like a sailor overboard with a drinking problem and mermaid troubles. I was caressed into the air by the willowy arms of a god that had long forgotten his own problems with the church. I was dashed onto land by the screaming, scraping majesty of a cold air front. This is the wind. This is the bends. This is the end of the world for pessimists.

Imagine a country without borders, a corral without cowboys, a chick without curves. What would we have? Anarchy, surely.

This is ten broken promises counted on ten broken fingers. This is the list of new year's resolutions being used for kindling. This is the breakfast I lied about eating. This is the second drink I've had for lunch. This is the three botched dinners I made you as apologies.

How well are we doing on time? Oh, that bad eh?

Well, then it's too late for lovers' quarrels and fantasies about past lives. We've got a house to build and neighbors to scorn. Why can't we all own pianos? Wouldn't that make things easier? How would we rob and murder each other if each of us were classically trained? If there were symphonies for every block, why would we ever use and abuse each other? Was that a good idea? I actually came up with it as a child. Watch the world get harder.

This is for all the broken casts with penny poetry scrawled into the white paint. This is for the red tape of democracy and the yellow tape of crime scenes. This is for party favors. This is for the old school. This is for the new wave. This is for the sleight of hand in every card deal.

This is for every kid breaking out of their house at night. This is for every teenager breaking into houses. This is for every twenty-something breaking hearts. This is for every thirty-something breaking up marriages. This is for every forty-something and beyond breaking their own promises to themselves.

This is for the rest of us. This is for the nobodies, the somebodies, the anybodies - all everybodies with antibodies. We are now moving matter. We are now making matter. We are now making sure we matter. This is why we move, so we can fill new deserts and taste new oceans.

The saltiest kiss I ever had was a girl's shoulder after a swim. That was one fine summer. She was young and I was young and all we had was youth.

To realize it now, as an adult is tragic: my most battled quality is my perfectionist drawl about being an outlaw. But what if I had my youth again? Would I pray for ivory beds and silky hair? Would I sneak off and abandon my parents? Would I make the most of a bad idea?

These are the questions to ask. These are the answers to beg for. These are the conversations we have with ourselves when we read a good book. These are the lyrics we know to the songs we hum in showers. These are the newspaper clippings I turned into revolutionary themes. How are we crass? We are crass by proxy, of course.

"Oh, now tell us how it ends, young, beautiful murderous thieves."

"In a stage bow, I promise you."

That is grand enough for me, for I have books to read and books to write. But how will I ever write with the future so very much a concern? I will figure it out later!

"Ah yes, famous last words..."

"The most famous indeed."

Well, then this is for the weddings, the funerals and the romantic getaways that fill our lives in constant ecstasy we deny and continuous euphoria we don't believe. That is truly remarkable, citizens of the world. All we ever really needed was tree houses and candles. Everything else is just trim.

"It's settled then. We shall kill ourselves."

"It really seems like the only honorable solution."

So, march forward, brave men and women! We honor your defeat by way of thunderous applause! Hear me now in this cavern!

"He's lost it now."

"If it was ever really there..."

Ah yes, the true nature of wisdom is the ability to talk with ease.

So give me the microphone.

I've got a culture to save.

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