54yrs • M •
Satyr is new to Captain Cynic and has less than 15 posts. New members have certain restrictions and must fill in CAPTCHAs to use various parts of the site.
||Postcards from Purgatory
Kiss it all goodbye; remnants of childhood imaginings evaporating off crumpled pillowcases and vibrant dream worlds overshadowed by monochromatic reality.
There was a boy back there; clean and bright and full of unhindered curiosity, running through wonderment and lost in the playgrounds of the mind.
Then, when the first tinges of actuality touched his feisty fingertips, he was filled with the shock of compassion, that only ones sharing in his depth of empathy could comprehend, and he knew misery for the first time.
An acerbic senescent man wonders how such naiveté could have been him and feelings of embarrassment, for having ever believed that mankind deserved redemption, contort his face into a jesters mask.
The world has become a drab grey charade, imitating the light spectrum; a pasquinade in place of monuments.
And these streets, these avenues of simulated living?
They violate the aesthetics of a mind that can be enthralled with just the quiet serenity of a mountain slope and the understated elegance of a leaf blowing in the wind.
Simplicity is so underappreciated.
Urbanization has done more than litter the landscapes and constructed synthetic order over the chaos. It has emptied the countryside and made them gardens devoid of spirit.
Neon meat-markets and ostentatious billboards have replaced woodlands, and careers in service separate man from the artefacts of his creativity, making him another instrument of means.
There, around swimming-pool lakesides and electronic hyper-realities, un-meritorious mechanoids muster in search for a glimpse into verisimilitude and a genuine experience with substance; robots looking for an 'emotion chip', some software of conscience, some inkling of philotimo, that will reintroduce them to humanity.
These ensconced souls, using the myth of 'human rights', that the system provides them with, vent their anxieties and become more than they pretend to be or could ever be. Protected from the complications of culpability they turn conceited, impertinent and demanding. They turn three-dimensional.
This distance from responsibility, this immunity from personal choice and action, has made human existence into a farce.
In the resonating vapidity, excess becomes commonplace as parody is used in place of the real that is missing.
All things become a monstrosity of overkill so that the basic sensation can be appreciated and the 'experience of living' – as Campbell claimed to be a myths purpose- can be had.
'Reality' is inflated out of proportion to accommodate declining sensitivity, but also made impotent through disinfection and quarantine. A white-walled sterile world where nothing you touch touches you back.
In the pressure to maintain a hygienic environment nothing is left to chance, no sign of imperfection is tolerated and no hint of illusion is condoned.
Markets are filled with produce minus any memory of where they come from or how they got there. Saturated with pesticides and picked before stress has sweetened them and the sun has burned color into them, they look plastic in their veneer and feel forged in their texture.
No worms, no bugs, no spots of natural decay.
Meat comes neatly packages with no remnant of the slaughter; canned goods with taste enhancing additives, preservatives and food coloration to give off the illusion of salubrity.
The world must be cleansed of any hint of authenticity.
Here in this enhanced reality of testosterone distended muscles, hormone therapies, surgical mammary glands, botox injections, penises in spectacular Bacchus splendour and excessive juvenescence, expressing desired dependence and faked virility, everything gets notched-up an octave and a new artificial median is found.
It is a world of dolls, with perfect skin and hair, with push-up bras, lipstick and gaudy toupees.
An environment of caricatures where numbness is counteracted with extravagance; where a whisper must reach the crescendo of a scream to be heard... and a scream...?
A scream becomes an inaudible Munch-like facial contortion where, in the silence, the horror is lost in travesty; Simulacra of a Baudrillard nightmare.
Under these circumstances enjoyment can only be had through overindulgence and amplification. A caress must become a slap, a kiss must become a bite, a voice must become a shriek and a gesture must become accentuated through theatrics and dramatizations, so that purity can be replicated in the superfluity of emptiness.
Passion made clear through sadism and masochistic magnification.
Circumstances, themselves, spin into staged events and legitimate characters vanish under thespian exuberance.
In the frenzy of thrashing panegyric ecstasy-mirroring the ones from Nyssa only in style-, sweat drenched bodies fatigued and made receptive to virus, become vulnerable to any unexpected cool draft and fall sick as a consequence.
The very thing that shelters them, imbuing them with a false sense of imperviousness, makes their immune systems delicate.
For with the death of this modern dogmatic, unreachable God, mans soul has turned diseased and a fever burns mankind's temples.
But what else could we have done with such a God? We had to kill Him in a pre-emptive strike.
And now, that boy cowers in silence in the center of a much more austere man; the world a grey-shifted kaleidoscope of imagery that washes over him like rainwater; a screenplay where the lines between fact and fantasy overlap and leave him indifferent.
Life imitates art these days and the world is an amphitheatre enclosed within an arena.
All reality is measured against the recycling imagination of the human mind and the distorting inevitability of memory; expectations are heightened to a delirious pitch of a wet-dream.
If it does not correspond precisely to the imagery of inflated realism, it must be revved-up, improved, embellished, diluted, warped.
The world made large to be seen by eyes that have lost their acuity or made small to hide the shortcomings.
Man takes examples from the screen and the screen takes examples from itself until the circle is made complete and reality, or the lack thereof, is left excluded on the periphery.
Even this confession is a parody.
Yours truly, from the temples of doom,
The universe of the surreal no longer comes to us through Rene Magritte's imagery of hypothetical subconscious symbolisms or through the pen of Andre Breton.
It has spilled over into the world at large.
It has left the dream-world for the conscious one.
And what is the difference? If the real and the surreal have become indistinguishable then what does fact matter, or action, or truth, or inertia?
All is malleable and nothing matters.
The first casualty is that of severity.
In a culture where not even the self is taken seriously, everything loses weight and gravity becomes a myth.
Imponderable realties come to be and all sense of permanence and reliability vanishes along with interest.
Cynicism is the lovechild of extreme scepticism, where no single thing has value unless it fits into a self-created personal reality where nothing external is allowed to disturb its internal harmony and tranquillity.
But reason wasn't meant for exploring the manifestations of its own subjectivity.
It was meant to create subjectivity through sensual elucidation and with it build strategies and castles of power, to withstand the unperceived objective.
When it was forced to turn on itself, due to the absence of creative frontiers, it became a cannibalistic entity, a self-effacing glutton.
The second casualty is that of energy.
In a jaded muted world, referential second-hand experiences are just as reliable as any other.
War, violence, brutality, love, sex, adventure could all be explored while lying on ones back reading books of fiction/non-fiction or watching screens of imagery or listening to a tune.
Acumen built on minimal effort; bought in used bookstores, in DVD outlets and corner magazine stands.
The experience of battle is shared through camera lenses and the voyeur convinces himself that he is just as worthy of expressing the terror and euphoria of combat as anyone that was actually there.
The deconstruction of authority begins with the absorption of distinction into a multiplicity of voyeuristic co-experiencing.
One mans involvement becomes everyone's involvement and action/adventure another product to be distributed and consumed.
We no longer exist, we observe existence.
The hero of the quest loses his face and turns into a 3-D character in an interactive simulation; he becomes a detachable prosthesis that is worn by all so that the cellular memory of the limb is downloaded into a communal trough.
But the totality of the experience is lost through such an appreciation by proxy.
In place of what is lost, the parts are severed from the main body and are nit-picked with surgical precision and scanned with microscopic accuracy.
The medium focuses on fractions and disregards the whole; frozen images, camera angles, sound-bites, micro-bites, microphones, micro-technology, as the miniaturization of the real distracts the senses from the entirety of nothingness.
In pornography the essence of the sexual act is misplaced in the conglomeration of images of body parts, writhing and sweating. The spectator is a participant and an observer at the same time and the event is assimilated into the consciousness, as if it had been in reality.
That's when everyone becomes the idol, everyone turns into the leading man and the event loses its magic.
But what happens to these doppelgangers of surrealism?
They speak with the commanding certainty and ostentatious power of the unaware and on their heads, the quintessential bowler hat to draw the eye away from their faceless craniums.
Yours truly, from the deserts of anonymity,
I had a meltdown again today; part of my usual cycle of self-pity.
It usually begins in the morning, when the mind searches for reasons to persist and before possibility has been slandered by the day's disappointment.
I rummage through subconscious detail and only find an insatiable Will, curious and full of unjustifiable hope.... then I open my eyes to the other four dimensions that remain and I am reminded of my disillusionment, again.
The process repeats.
The Will is all that drives me now.
A pride that will not capitulate.
Later in the day, I watch the tube.
A cartoon character using the catch-phrases of movie-land reality for the umpteenth time, introduces, in that Austrian accent of his, an empty husk of a man unto the podium of Democratic theatrics.
The others inner vacancy is splattered on his simpleton visage in a silly grin that says 'For Rent', as he makes his way to the microphone where he will recite his carefully crafted –by others- and memorized speech, making sure he hits all the talking-points and makes all the rehearsed pauses.
He mirrors, so accurately, the pattern of self-realization of every hollow vessel, as he once looked for contentment in substance abuse before he settled on that 'mother' of all vacant space renovators, religion; a kind of 'spiritual-eye-for-the simple-guy' that results in a 'born-again' vivacity.
The crowd cheers their heroes in oblivion; milk laden herbivores, munching on the fodder of ignorance and waiting to be relieved from the pressures of their engorged adders.
One is the incumbent and the other a symbol of the American dream; both marionettes of hypocrisy and idols of pretence that reflect the bankrupt qualities of the masses that adore them.
They embrace and become indistinguishable.
I change the channel to a documentary.
At least here the lines between predator and prey are easily discernable.
In the absence of meaning I settle for purpose and go through the motions of living.
But the mind wants more.
It craves a connection to the real, a taste of finality.
Death becomes so attractive at times.
It's not that I crave recognition or attention, but a desire to find something, someone to not feel so alone; something, someone to share the joke with; something, someone to be real with, to become a child again, to stop analyzing the ramifications and to surrender to chance.
This need is what keeps me grounded to my humanity.
I accept all aspects of it, with some bitterness.
All emotions have found a way of purging out of me, except that single one that wells-up until it knots my throat in rage.
It now dominates my thoughts, not because it is the only thing I feel but because it is the only thing I am not allowed to feel.
I live in a world where such displays of temper are intolerable and punishable. The result of my free self-expression would have unacceptable personal costs and it is this restriction that burns the fires of my rebellion.
I am consumed with a desire to release it in the full glory of its sexual force, by the desire to exact my own vengeance upon an existence of contradictions and indifference, by the yearning to spit in God's eye.
My mind is filled with visions of destruction, of smouldering citadels and decapitated corpses. The blood of morons splattered on my face, with a euphoric grin on it, and their cow-like eyes pleading for mercy before I spill their unexploited brains before my feet.
There is so much stupidity to cleanse this Earth from, so much filth.
And if I should fall victim to my own fantasy; what a way to go? What a perfect ending?
The predictable ensuing feelings of guilt, compassion and regret, products of my nature accentuated through cultural indoctrination, but easily dealt with and ignored in the presence of so much splendour.
How can a man remain a man when he is asked to bear his neck daily and he is forced to accept the taunts of lesser beings?
He loses a piece of himself, forced to turn womanly in his strategizing, forced to swallow his pride, forced to endure the shame of castration and plan for an escape; a redemption.
Most of this unexplored violence remains concealed under layers of civility, as I do not even dare write most of them on paper, just in case they become discovered sometime, somehow.
Do you think you know me now?
Fool, I am more than this.
How can I be encompassed with crude labels?
Yours truly, from the edges of sanity,
I wrestled with the devil again tonight and, like always, I was badly beat.
He knows all of my moves, by now, and he always manages to pin me with a clever promise and a dexterous threat.
It's my firmness that lets me down; my mass.
But all is not lost.
In his hands I have learned much about myself and I have seen the world as it is.
Through defeat I've become ethereal, losing substance with every fall.
I've become skeletal.
He now struggles to hold my will and gets winded trying to find a part of me to exploit, a part of me that still cares, a part of me to manipulate, as he once did so easily.
In the race of the everyday I have lost all concept of solidity. Objects drift through my fingers and pass through my mind without touching me.
I am like a fog.
Nothing is mine and I belong to nothing.
This is becoming more and more disconcerting; it confronts the essence of my primitive being.
I danced with the devil again tonight and, like always, he was the lead.
Floating through the moonlight landscapes, a nightingale played a note and I struggled to find a rhythm.
Dark images that once made me gasp now only fill me with longing for the world I left behind.
This too is slowly draining out of me.
My tears: crystal dewdrops forming on luscious canopies and dropping on the thirsty soils of continuous recurrence.
These silly creatures I called my kind, now look so absurd to me; penises and vaginas fighting for a place in a vast bacchanal, fucking their way out of meaninglessness.
This is called life.
A fool's existence.
Mucus filled corpses governed by chemical necessity, spewing excrement, releasing gases, gushing liquids from every orifice.
Then with ridiculous appendages and soft grey-matter they search for eternity, for nobility, for truth, for understanding so as to become more than animated dirt; a slow decay of cadavers obscuring the stench with perfumes, deodorants and disinfectants.
I laugh to stop myself from gagging.
Consciousness, as it is defined, is an orgy of engorged testicles and ovulating ovaries; every meeting a fuck-fest to weather mortality.
Cocks, pussies, tits and asses sum up humanity and an orgasmic spasm defines mankind's creations; all that you see are remnants of multiple ejaculations splattered against emptiness, excrement of desire.
Priapus should be erected in every town square as a symbol of our real spiritualism.
Every other idol has been but a variation of the original.
Holy trinities representing mans triangular balance: father/son/holy spirit, mind/psyche/body, life/becoming/death, justice system/government/the people, instinct/emotion/intellect, male/sex/female, attraction/apathy/repulsion, good/neutral/evil, true/doubt/false, pleasure/contentment/pain, love/indifference/hate, master/power/slave, past/present/future, material/ethereal/immaterial, here/movement/there and so on...
A fitting heritage for those to come.... and come... and come....
I sang with the devil again tonight and, like always, he drowned out my feeble chant with a guttural bellow that stirred the dead.
The tune reached a deafening climax before it tumbled into a silent murmur of discontentment.
A splenetic lament for those exiled from the kingdom and condemned to build their own or perish trying to, a dirge of indignation towards a God that had to pay for His vanity.
Then I realized that I was in the company of a friend and not a vile fiend as I was taught to believe.
And there, behind the singing fallen angel, stood my father.
He smiled at me like he had rarely done when still alive. His brow uncharacteristically soft and his glance full of gentle mirth.
He knew what I will soon find out on my own.
'This world was not meant for eyes like ours. They see too much and can tolerate so little of it.' I heard him say.
'Behind every idol we see a fraud and behind every word we hear the motive.'
'How can I make myself blind to it without losing the magnificence, how do I become deaf to it without losing the song?' I wondered.
'This flesh was not meant for fires like these. It feels too much and the spirit warps in the blaze.' he went on, ignoring my plea.
'The most impressionable materials must be protected from such harsh environments or else they solidify into twisted shapes and lose their beauty and flowing glee.'
'How can I find the balance between my blazing senses and my cooling mind, how do I absorb the world without letting it soil me?' I asked.
There was no answer.
Yours truly, from the shores of Styx,
How happy is the blameless vestal's lot!
The world forgetting, by the world forgot.
Eternal sunshine of the spotless mind!
Each pray'r accepted, and each wish resign'd;
Eloisa to Abelard
Alexander Pope (1688-1744)
For once, to lie down in sleep and to awake into a world made anew.
All past events vanishing in the rising sun, as if they were dream, and reality, once more, a pristine source of spectacles that dare you to make them yours.
To be a child again, unhindered by the prejudice of hindsight and unsoiled by the remnants of experience; a naïve, curious, student of life, pure and honest in his thoughts and actions.
For once to kneel down low and drink deeply from the flowing waters of Lethe, that so sooth the wearied soul.
All symbols of yore fading with one swallow and the scars that made them true, evaporating like sweat off the skin.
To be clean again, fresh and bright like childhoods Saturday morning joy; rested and ready for a day of play in the fields of happenstance.
But no such gifts are offered to mortal men as I.
What is known cannot be unknown and what is done cannot be undone.
Mistakes either edify or they victimize, they cannot be erased from memory but only denied direct access to consciousness.
There is so much to regret, so much to recall with sullen grief, but nothing more grievous than my incessant need to color humanity with my own brand of exaggerated decency and my persistent practice of openly speaking my mind with little insincerity and even less guile.
This, most of all, has been responsible for my failure to put into practical use the products of my receptivity; this and my utter indifference concerning the possible rewards.
The world was not meant for naive dreamers.
No, this world was meant for liars and charlatans that vomit words with forked tongue and guiltless duplicity, while wearing faces of unaware innocence.
This world was made for self-deceivers and conceited pretenders that bury diffidence in delusion and uncertainty in confidence.
This world was invented for actors that need scripts to find the words and wardrobe/makeup to fit the image they cannot interpret otherwise.
This world was created for simpleminded morons that come to believe in the chicanery of self and the ludicrousness of an existence with meaning.
'The meek shall inherit the Earth!'
For what is more believable than what is already believed and what is more easily manipulated than what is ignorant of its self?
The mind has an inbuilt propensity to grasp onto anything that flatters it and to totally ignore what will drive it mad; existential retardation which ensures that the living will continue to find reasons to persist.
What little deceit I have been responsible for, was in passively allowing others to continue defining me and the reality around me, with epithets that did not correspond to my own and in allowing stupidity to take its course and find its expected natural conclusion with no intervention by me.
My calm has been my retribution.
However, even here I've not remained disciplined to my own insights.
These occurrences, of my own culpability through silence, have usually and regrettably been prematurely sabotaged when, in an ensuing moment of credulity, I open my mouth and speak my conscience, a terrible thing to do in a romance-obsessed, politically-correct world as this.
If only I could follow through with it and let simple minds, construct their own theater-stages where, swallowing my own pride, I can be cast to appear in the outfits selected for me, with a feigned earnestness that denies the ridiculousness of the shallow performance to come.
What has it cost me, this impatience with bullshit and idiocy, this arrogance of honor and dignity?
There is so much I've lost; so much I've pushed away with my free tongue and relentless desire to be appreciated for my authenticity rather than for my pretense, to be valued for my presence rather than for my promise.
Friends, women, jobs, opportunities and even a child have been burned away with the fires of my vain straightforwardness.
All of them thrown away due to some myth about the existence of nobility.
Nobility!? It sounds so absurd now.
Where, in this cesspool of hubris, could such a concept of lordliness survive?
A 'Philosopher King' would require the sheltering force of an entire Republic to remain untarnished in this universe.
Language is fraught with so many empty words of vanity and 'nobility' is but another example.
Only a pathetic creature like man could come up with standards of distinction he could never live up to and then feel ashamed about it; standards so ambiguous and murky that no dictionary descriptions can thoroughly encompass their nuances.
Have I learned my lesson yet?
Have the last remnants of romantic idealism been purged out of me, yet?
Have I stopped dreaming, yet?
A fool I am to have ever considered that there is such a thing as authenticity and dignity or that a thing like intimacy is even possible.
A big game of dominance is life, where everyone believes himself the winner when speaking the phrases of partnership and equality.
Consciousness is built by subterfuge.
Whose falsehood is labeled 'truth' is determined by power balances and circumstance and has nothing to do with fact, supporting evidence or ideals of fancy.
An agreed upon equivocation permeates social interactions and civilization is constructed on commonly acceptable approximations.
These are called morals, values, virtues and ideals.
Then they become traditions, laws and get the benefit of being considered truths, if they make it to the top.
Every human relationship is littered with ignored realities and underlying tension; a natural consequence of trying to find conciliation in the conflict between intellect and instinct or of trying to find harmony between human need and the Other that quells it; a kind of negotiation between reason and necessity, attempting to avoid unconditional surrender and to save face, despite of it.
People are not interested in who other people are, they are interested in who the other people might be or could be or should be.
People don't accept other people the way they are, they tolerate parts of them so that the other parts can be accessible to them.
Successful human interactions are the ones where one or both sides accept piecemeal the realities of the other by either stifling the parts that collide or by masking them behind consent so that specific shared goals are reached and specific shared interests are maintained.
A cooperative dance of illusion where no movements which contradict common rhythms are tolerated and everything that threatens the chimera is punished with exile.
Sometimes they may result in long-term affairs, empires of harmonious coexistence, when after the objective is achieved, anxiety, comfort and familiarity prevents change; the secret to a 'good' marriage.
What does man appreciate more in the other than the reflection of his own imagination?
We are attracted to beauty because it gives off the imagery of health and spotless vitality which we covet; we are attracted to intelligence because it gives off the fable of power and control which we crave; we are drawn to the external to fill in the gaps in ourselves.
It is possibility that makes us disregard our reason. Possibility grounded on empirical elucidation.
We adore anything in the other that lends credence to our fantasies and hopes. Whether they are justified or not never enters into the equation unless the dream is foreshadowed by awakening. Then we react violently in defense of our own errors and we blame the other for our own mistakes.
And here's where I slip up by trying to reshape the imperfections in accordance to my own wishes, because I cannot bring myself to ignore the blemishes or blind my eyes to them for the momentary gain.
It's the power appetite of my nature.
Perhaps it is time for a reinvention of purpose an alteration in strategy; one of those adaptations that enhance existence and are the mark of a true survivor.
Perhaps it is time for a reincarnation, just like the ones I've done before, a reawakening of the parts that slumber unused inside me, a forgetfulness that will reinvent the self.
If trickery is the lubricant of social participation and all a person is allowed to be is a projection of sensual information, then let it be I that decides what is perceived and how I am defined and let me be indifferent to all others.
A peddler of hope and thoughts I'll be, feeding the wants in others so that my own are fulfilled; a yes-man to idiocy that claims to know the universe and constructs edifices of convenience to hide itself in; a passive participant of agreeing positivism while I manipulate hope, ignorance and misinterpretation into moments of pleasurable ludicrousness.
Life is too short to be taken seriously and reputation too ephemeral to be overly preoccupied with.
It means nothing if you are praised or damned after death. This too fades in the eternity that follows.
No more trying to connect honestly and no more remaining loyal to my misinterpretations of virtuousness.
Virtue is personal and the world has nothing to do with it.
The universe is a playground; a vast, cold, wonderful, soulless gaming area and all that is in it but playthings to be enjoyed and forgotten.
Who am I to change the world?
Who am I to resist nature?
Who am I to want more?
Who am I...?
All I can hope for is an 'eternal sunshine of the spotless mind'.
Yours truly, knee deep in the fertilizer of life,
There can be no more joyous day, for the troubled traveler, than after the long leg of a demanding trek has ended and he focuses his sight upon a new horizon.
The bruises and cicatrices, that mark his hide, are reminders of the road left behind and symbols of struggles to be worn proudly like war medals; each attached, through memory, to a battle that was survived and proof of what was experienced and endured.
There need not be bragging, no verbal testimonial presented, no admission of guilt; the body wears its past like a garment.
Each blemish, each scab, each callous, each fading cut is a visual memorial of individual history and those inner wounds, that cannot be readily perceived, find their way to the surface through glances, smells and movements, through words, postures and mannerisms, through subtle details of action and linguistic particulars.
A mans physical shell is a narration of his past, a moving script of credentials; everything that has touched him has left the stigmata of his perseverance.
It is this that connects the multiplicity of individuations and encompasses them in a singular being, where sometimes who someone is and who someone was bear little resemblance to each other. Two strangers entangled through history by I fine linear strand of time.
In this way my early love for mankind has marked me well.
Such ideals I had, such high hopes, such expectations...such bullshit!
I built podiums to raise them on; trophy cases for the, supposedly, laudable.
The highest of these towers, the most honored throne I reserved for, none other than, women; those mysterious god-like creatures that beardless men find themselves consumed by.
To them I wanted to prove myself and from them I wanted to win my pride.
Such a slave to my instincts I was. Such a victim of my ignorance I was.
And they, such willing feeders off my needs.
Now, these same pedestals remind me of my past naiveté.
They lie shattered within my heart; artifacts of lost innocence.
I've destroyed them all, one by one, vandalized them into smithereens and deconstructed them into oblivion.
Only one I've dared to keep in hiding for all this time; a single tower of hope that has slowly decayed over the years and has caused me much anguish.
There I had dreamed of placing the one I might have bumped into, by chance, out there on the open road. The one that would earn my worship, the one that would live-up to my expectations of human dignity and exhibit the graciousness of spirit and eloquence of presence I would be honored to walk beside and call my own.
Oh, and what gifts I was prepared to give.
I've spent years offering opportunities towards this end, decades risking all for that off chance that she'll appear and make it all worth while.
It has all been for not.
This childish dream burns today in the pyre of experience and with it the last pieces of my youth.
Tonight, when the lights are turned down low and I lay me down to sleep, I will incinerate this temple of romanticism and the ashes I will scatter, as souvenirs of emancipation, across the void.
In its place I will erect something indecipherable.
A castle of obscured decadence, a crystal palace of distorting mirrors where everyone sees what they want to see and all are treated in the way they believe they deserve to be, without any contestation from me.
If they think they should be pissed on and spat at, then that's what I will do.
If they think they should be beaten and stepped on, then that's what I will do.
If they think they should be fucked like the little sluts they judge themselves to be, by night, and then adorned like princesses so that the world is fooled, by day, then that's what I'll do and more.
If they think they deserve the privileges of royalty and the sacrifices reserved for gods, then I'll let them continue in the thinking.
If they believe themselves to be part of the chosen few and the holy gifted, then I'll show them whatever faked reverence I can muster.
If they secretly consider themselves human waste, to be used and thrown away, but insist on maintaining an air of faked pride and decorum to make excuses to themselves, then I'll play along in the farce.
If they think they should be praised and flattered with little justification for it or that they are, at the very least, my equals because they cannot claim to be my superiors, then I'll become a shameless sycophant.
The days of me insisting upon honesty and imposing my own sense of honor upon them are over.
The days of me wanting to embarrass them into realization, are over.
There will be no more resistance from me. No more placing my own ideals about dignity, pride and worthiness upon those that have no understanding of them.
This solitary drifter will allow his natural talents to resurface, once again, and a wily grifter will be resurrected, like a phoenix from the dust.
I am nothing if not ingenious when I can control my impatience.
This new course fills me with calm now.
The old tears of grief resurface as absurd hilarity and I laugh again, with the untroubled glee of a dotard.
Laugh and croon I will, in that eastern ululation, I reproduce so accurately.
Sing those old songs of a land long gone, which capture life's tragic-comic resonance and wail against reality.
And those that hear me will stop and listen, and will find themselves quoting my words and will find themselves seeing through my eyes and noticing the things I showed them so clearly.
Nobody forgets the wanderer when they notice him in passing.
Yours truly, from the paths of possibility,
Damn the French and their Post-modern wastelands!
It's only fitting that I should find kinship with those great western outsiders of our times.
What have I been all my life, if not an outsider?
Always the new kid in school, the stranger from a strange land, the foreigner knocking at the door asking permission to enter and requesting a hot meal to eat and a warm place to sleep in.
In those moments, standing before the walls and closed doorways, when uncertainty grasped me, I awakened to the architectures of human creativity and studied the bricks one by one; saw the fragility of the cement holding them together and the subtle deformities in their form.
And when the door was, sometimes, opened I absorbed the atmosphere with a breath and swept the interior with the clarity and curiosity of a new arrival.
I seized the details, learned the mechanics and made myself sensitive to the ambience and the invisible tensions.
I became conscious.
His words echo now, with renewed resilience, within my chest:
The path ends! Abyss and deathly silence loom!
You want this! Your will stayed to its doom!
Now wanderer, stand! Be keen and cool as frost!
Believe in danger and you-are lost.
Upon what territories have I trespassed now?
Beasts of burden roam the streets, un-harnessed and untrained.
What more dangerous animal can there be than the simpleminded one that has been unbridled and set free before real fear has taken hold of it and it has not felt the limitations of its being?
Look at this world! - A repugnant zoo of bestial domiciliary.
What most cultivated brutes' lack, in comparison to their wild brethren, is a sense of caution derived through the humility of brutal experience.
The wild has a way of forcing a more efficient disposition, a sense of cutting irony and a more modest self-evaluation.
It demands respect! – Exactly what kennelled, cultivated souls have little of; their poise and confidence more a product of artificiality and unchallenged ego.
You give permissions indiscriminately; desensitize them from reality, by offering an assortment of realistic imagery splattered across every sensual reference point and relieve them from the constraints of responsibility, morality and religious horror and what you get... is this!:
'Universal education has created an immense class of what I may call the New Stupid.'
'Poets, in our civilization, as it exists at present, must be difficult.'
Liberty is not for all.
There has to be some innate self-regulating mechanism present before so much wealth and possibility is given.
There has to be some discipline of mind before it is opened up to the universe.
There has to be some hook-up present; a metaphysical plug-in; an ingrained health.
Passions must be channelled into dammed reservoirs so that their full potential can be cultivated and so that they do not lead you astray into flooded farmlands. Those that know not these disciplines become destructive to themselves and to others.
In my abject state, I offer a false face of tranquility, as my inner being churns trying to throw me into its turmoil, where I will surely drown.
'Not belonging to any place, any time, any love. A lost origin, the impossibility to take root, a rummaging memory, the present is abeyance. The space of the foreigner is a moving train, a plane in flight, the transition that precludes stopping.
As to landmarks, these are none. His time? The time of a resurrection that remembers death and what happened before, but the glory of being beyond: merely the feeling of a reprieve, of having gotten away.'
-Julia Kristeva (Strangers to Ourselves)
'Meeting balances wandering. A crossroads of two othernesses, it welcomes the foreigner without tying him down, opening the host to his visitor without committing him.'
She and Derrida presenting an alternative to the more masculine:
'We must either transcend the Other or allow oneself to be transcended by him. The essence of relationships between consciousnesses is conflict.'
-Jean-Paul Sartre (Being and Nothingness)
Anima/Animus engulfed in a battle over our moral fibre.
Who shall win, who will we allow to claim our futures, who will dominate our collective unconscious?
What happens in this modern obsession of peering into the abyss, of deconstructing into infinity, is that the soul is dissected, opened up, laid bear until nothing is left but dark nothingness.
The onion layers, that keep the self in a cohesive unity, are peeled away, exposing it to the universal flux. Culture, religion, authority, mythology, tradition, all discarded and defamed until one reaches the inner core and, discovering emptiness, he realizes that it was the layers, participating in unison, that made-up the mystery of self.
Let them ostracize me now.
The vengeance of the weak should never be underestimated.
Let the one that is sinless, cast the first stone and let him smile, in that self-contented, self-righteous and mocking way that so perfectly shows his soul.
Let him call it passion or poetic justice or strength or majesty or even....love (?)- As he hurtles his retribution at me.
They hold the Bible, or that popular post-modern substitute 'Thus Spake Zarathustra', like a safety blanket against their chests. They quote from it and worship the authors with only a selective abstract understanding of what was being said or how it actually applies to real life.
What were Ghandi's seven mortal social sins?
Smelling the blood from my open wounds let them gather, one by one, to feed off my energy, to spit into my gaping heart, to jeer and add their pebble of anger to the frenzy.
Mass hysteria manifested.
They want to tear me to pieces for what I've said.
They want to teach me a lesson for what I've dared.
They want to erase it from memory by annihilating me.
They forget, perhaps, that I, myself, have willingly and in full awareness of the consequences, placed myself here; that it is I that voluntarily laid down here on this hard ground before them and it will be I that decides when I shall get up and tell them, what they forget about who they really are.
How easy it is to unravel a soul, especially when it is offered to you upon a platter.
An onion, as a gift - It'll make you cry before it nourishes you.
They speak of love and trust and honour, these children of the west.
They claim to have aspired towards nobility.
They speak of brutality and war and ferocity....Ha!
But their actions....their actions...What do they say about them?
When they ask: why am I insulted? - Do they always flatter themselves with explanations that degrade the other?
When they cast stones, do they forget their own vulnerabilities to them?
When they love or hate do they demonize or sanctify the other to find reasons for their indiscretions?
The lesson has been learned, so let me be silent now; stoic and serene, as I want to be, emulating my highest virtues.
Let me live up to my own expectations and hold onto what memories of compassion and love that remain me.
Let me hold my mouth still and my heart exposed.
I fear nothing, now that I've lost it all!
I've felt this before. I've survived it.
This world can't disappoint me any more.
Now, it is time for play and joyous abandonment to pretence.
To be serious, is to hold onto ideals.
I have found none thus far.
So let me be like them: clownishly painted fools laughing at themselves through the other, sweepers of dirt under the carpets of reality, psychologically retarded souls with no capacity to forgive their idol for being human, emancipated minds lost in possibility.
Sincerely yours, from the frozen north,
What precious moments I've savoured, what instances of sublime near-perfection
...Sitting around a dinner table under a starlit summer day with a group of assorted characters sharing food and drink and, united by a common tradition, a moment of rare camaraderie.
One of my companions was strumming a bouzouki, sending notes of twinkling tears into the night, and the rest of us sat there singing songs of grace, tunes of mirth and sorrow, melodies of absolution, embracing each other with both voice and hand, our spirits locked in mutual exoneration.
And the world?
The world was exiled from our moment of merriment and grief; our singing an invisible wall to keep the demons away, a vocal wall of harmonic vibrations casting waves of disturbance through the air.
The evening lamb became our sacrifice to the phantoms of the surrounding darkness and the homemade wine a conductor of inner spirits releasing their energies into the midnight calm; intertwining there, for a moment, above our table in a melodic dance before drifting off into the nothing.
Oh, how I sang that night; my voice rising and falling, twisting and turning, straining against the knot in my throat and my own physical limitations, that held the better part of me concealed.
Tears pooled in my eyes, my heart gushing forth from every pore, my body tingling with the delight of release.
Lost, I was, lost is elation and torment...taking them all with me.
We became one that night; a revelry of the damned, an alliance of the defiant, made courageous by the godly nectar.
And what songs we sang! What poetic curses we let go!
Anthems of resistance, ballads of love and hate, psalms of mourning, nostalgic hymns of remembrance; they became our shared reverence for life, our unified condemnation and we but instruments of the great unknown absolved from all liability.
And we cried...Cried the tears only those that have seen life at its fullest can, that only those that have felt the ecstasy and the horror of it all can appreciate.
And when the songs were done and the night turned into dusk, we parted, strangers once more, but now joined in the memory of our coupling denunciation.
...Dancing on a mountain top, frontier, outpost in the middle of nowhere, with only the guard dogs and the surrounding forest as our witnesses.
A band of soldiers, we were, sharing a common duty but also a common fate.
Dressed in dirty torn khakis and seeped in cheap Retsina we danced...danced like Zorbas only knew how, danced with the pneuma of our forefathers guiding our every step, in that manly hands-to-shoulders way, from a time before our birth.
We whirled in the darkness, dipping down low, in a swoop, upon the sacred soil before leaping into the air, as if to set sail upon it, as if to shatter our earthly chains; the body spinning, weaving, and flowing with the rhythms of an Asia Minor that is no more and our ardent breathe sending shocks of heat into the winter air.
We shared a soul, drinking greedily from a common pool and supporting each other in our quest for transcendence.
What were we that night? - Agents for divine hands and will-less minions to the sound of pulsating tempo.
Our bodies were taken over by nameless powers, secret ancient forces connecting us to a long line of descent.
We were one.
But there was order in the seemingly ebb and flow of ecstasy, a hidden code of meaning in the circling flow and random patterns of our limbs.
There was a symbolic imitation, so different from the thrashing and gyrating of more modern dances with their primitive sexual innuendos and garish vulgarity.
There was a narration of the past that only men can produce.
Waking to a sunbeam splash, her nestled face pouting against my chest, and her warm breath a caressing reminder of an earlier inner heat that engulfed me and pulled me into its vacant depth.
My mind grasped for wakefulness but settled for the groggy half-stare into empty space, where body has yet to be rekindled into animation and just lays there paralysed but perfectly contented, despite of it.
She stirred in her sleep and I felt her breast stroking me with its fullness.
A subtle smile stretched my lips as I dipped down into the memory of her thrashing desire and as the echoes of her earlier yearning groans resurfaced in my mind.
So soft and subtle she was, with a delicious round rump I loved to cup my hands around, and a face of large-eyed femininity that drove me crazy when she bit her lower lip, in that way she did, teasing me into tumescence.
My mind then drifted into the daydreaming serenades of imagination, where fact and fantasy intermingle with the carefree creativity of mayhem and, nourished by the unconscious, concocts circumstances of hidden need.
I cast her as my lead, a naked cherub running from me in a forest of doughy white mist, her muffled laughter egging me on with its promise, the curve of her bouncing buttocks making me gasp in anticipation.
As I reached to grab her, she turned on me pulling me down upon her on the billowing cotton fields and I was snapped away into the memory of our first encounter:
We danced in a smoky crowded St. Denis club both of us uncertain as to what would follow, when chance decided for us. The swaying swarm pushed us against each other shattering the shyness, and there, surrounded by prying eyes we shared a first kiss and then the groping hands of unleashed desire and then...
...Riding on a winding road that cut through the Peloponnesian countryside like a wrinkle on a weathered hand.
There was nothing but the sound of the wind in my ears, the tremble of the engine between my legs and red-soiled olive tree orchards against the backdrop of deep cloudless blue running by my eyes.
Along the way I collected lessons from past lives and insights from the geography; the jumble of remembrance becoming a tapestry of mingling instances, where past, present and future become one.
I paid my respects to the Olympian gaming grounds, where men of old attempted to bridge the gap between body and soul and dreamed about harmony and ascendance.
I ran across the arena, where once audiences gathered to pay homage to the best of the best, and wanting to retrace their steps, I strolled upon their walkways and gazed upon their monuments.
Then, the subterranean chasms of Deiros reminded me of the high cost of creation and the easy nonchalance of destruction.
Floating through the tunnels, I saw pillars that took centuries to be created and natural artistry that took millennia of undisturbed persistence to come to be, and yet how easily one could cut away a piece in a moment of brash selfishness.
Then, swimming in the Aegean, by a Byzantium fortress-city, I plunged into the abyss of azure, surrounded by schools of delicate beauty.
The floor plummeted, suddenly into hazy depths where my stare was met with a wall of impenetrable blue that sent a chill down my spine.
I swam there weightless.
Looking into infinity can make a mind go mad.
So I turned from it, wanting to find an object of focus that would quiet my trembling soul, but it beckons me still, that image of the void, it calls to me to come back to it, to dive into its mystery.
Then, promenading along seaside village harbours, restaurants strewn by the water, I hear the tinkling of glassware mingling with the ocean pulse, the feint smells of roasting meat on the salty air and proprietors pleading for my money:
'Please' he says, pointing to a seat, thinking I am but a foreigner here.
I sit, ordering ouzo with the usual accompanying octopus, and I become spellbound by the setting sun, made more beautiful with alcohol streaming through my veins.
She's there, as well, a curious creature wanting things from me but unable to ask for them directly, seeking for safe anchorages in me, but unable to accept the ones I offer, playing those games girls are known for and so good at.
I already know that she will eventually turn on me, wanting to excuse her own inabilities. She will call me the names she calls herself in her head.
For now, I only choose to recall her crumpled visage as I penetrate her, that bite on my arm when she comes, and her sweat drenched hair brushing against my face as she rides me in the night.
The moment is not ruined. There is splendour in an even imperfect circumstance there is beauty in even an ugly situation.
One must learn to cut away the clutter and focus on the sublime. There, within the noise, I can hear the feint resonance of a central hymn, a subtle reverberation of melody.
I remember...to remember.
Yours truly, from the chambers of Mnemosyne,