“It takes a lot of discipline.”

It is hard for me to take him seriously, not because his face is covered with open sores, not because his pants are around his ankles, but honestly, just because he is talking nonsense.

“When one civilization takes over another, it doesn’t bother destroying the roads that the previous civilization has built, rather, it uses those roads to serve its own ends.  Do you see?”

Of course I see.  This man is not talking about new things.  But I can tell by the way that he is looking at me that I am wrong.  I do not see.  That is, I do not see what he sees.

Rather than explain himself, he hobbles over to the curb, pants dragging in the dust.  He takes a seat and sighs.

I don’t know if it is one of those sighs that means I should approach or one of those sighs that means I should ‘stay the fuck away [from him].’

So I take an average of the two and cut off my own finger in hopes that this will not offend as much as genuine concern or indifference.

He turns his head slightly to look at me and the flow of blood that is alternating between a spray and a thin stream from the gap where my ring finger used to be.

“You are going to have a hell of a time explaining that to your grandkids,” he snorts.

My mind eats itself.

Fuck life, fuck love, fuck desire, fuck passion, fuck familiarity, fuck anger, fuck fucking, fuck incompetence…

He has hay fever and it is showing.  Fatigued way that he breathes.

…fuck knowledge, fuck fear, fuck brains and penises and kneecaps and eardrums.

My head is spinning, now, and my eyes are bulging out.  I see that my foot has caught fire again, but I don’t want to bother trying to put it out this time.  Where did it get me the last time?

I used to have a dark sense of humor.  Now the humor is gone, but the darkness remains.

The fire has spread up to my abdomen, and a concerned public of those who I have cared for and all those who have cared about me is starting to gather.

I think to myself of creating a Venn diagram to find the intersection of these two populations, but I realize that they are in fact a unity.  I can tell by the way that their pairs of eyes are focused on me.  My best friends are laughing.  Sadly.  They knew that it would finish like this, they knew that this was what I wanted.  This might even be one of their dreams, right now.

And I, I am snorkeling in a bay where long ago people drowned in a ceremonial way, and their bones are littering the silt below me.  The water is too muddy, silty, and I don’t realize that the thin streams of water that are entering my mouth through my closed lips are fertile with the decayed flesh of these victims, who, willingly or not, were eaten up by the value system of their ages.

I have seen a plane wreck, and felt the violent passing of those ministers of death, preaching their sermons of destruction until their own end caught them, unawares, or perhaps, as aware as this seemingly random collection of people are at my apparent demise.

I dreamed last night, or was it last year, of a levitating glass room in a sky with some clouds.  The glass refracted the light that was reflecting off of the clouds so that they created and illusory suggestion of these clouds’ actual position on my retinas.  The retinas then dutifully passed this misinformation to my brain that was then able to declare all these impulses as bullshit and to figure out for itself where these clouds were.

But I had no second-level brain to declare that the very clouds themselves are bullshit.

Levitating glass rooms are bullshit, electromagnetic theory is bullshit, dreams are bullshit, philosophies are bullshit…

But all of this is becoming clear to me now, even without the intervention of a second brain because the fire that started out at my foot has spread to my whole body, and I am carbonizing.

…passion is shit, and wine is shit, and music is shit.

The water, of which I am 70 percent, is boiling rapidly.  I feel like I am a kerosene man.

As I leave my shell of ash, I remember images and phrases.

A gathering, outside, of friends.  An artist, too shy or brilliant to be one-hundred-percent open to me, and fighting in vain to keep a peace in the air for a fortnight.

I am talking about political asylum in Britain with a Lithuanian.

I am getting drunk in that sour way that wine provides.

Boxing lessons on balconies.

We talk about the world (the world is shit).

Don’t fuck my brain, learning how to squat, who is the most mature and intelligent…

We will not go running tomorrow, and this writing has no conclusion.

 

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