No Tabula Rasa.

We live and learn
just to die and forget
when we come back
around again.

Existential frustration
on a dizzying wheel.
Pains of square one.
Hope is a lie, it seems:
nothing save for the cold,
hard concrete is real.

No tabula rasa,
just the jar of Pandora,
sealed up tight, buried
in the rich earth
of the mind.

So I take a walk
through the graveyard, a
stroll through the catacomb
to identify the sources
of my haunts
and periods of possession,

gathering up
scattered pieces of me,
trying to put myself together,
for all I know
for the very first time
in all my wasted lives.

So I grab the shovel,
head for another grave,
safe and secure beneath Luna
reflecting the light
of the soul that hides away,
hoping to excavate,
itching to integrate.
Another restless night
to send me sleepwalking
around the day.

Another memory rises
up from within me,
feeding the questions
that drive me
further elaboration…

Sometimes I feel
as though I’ve lived
only to learn what I’m not;
who I am
remains a plaguing mystery.

History narrows
the path to the horizon.
Revealing a face,
peeling away all sacred horrors,
blessed fictions.

Only in retrospect
do I see and respect
that it does so
considerately.

Beggar.

Birth contractions
you mistake for death throes,
helping hands
for middle fingers.

Confused, frustrated,
ashamed.

Fighting with yourself:
warden, prisoner and prison.
Trapped in the hell
of the same old story.

What you resist, persists.
Transience is the only constant,
eternal recurrence is the plague.
Held in place
by resistance, alliance:
where attention goes,
energy flows.

Stop feeding the cycle.
Just declare yourself Swiss,
see beyond all this.

Conjure up
determination.
Patience is a virtue:
persistence pays.

You’re just a beggar
looking for change…

Surfing the Probability Wave.

No telling how
this could pan out.
Hunger pangs in the soles
for sturdy earth
have grown relentless.

Uncertainty stretched
out to madness.

Hanging
from the question mark.
Still surfing
the probability wave,
prepared for a dozen ways
in which it might crash on
the shores of actuality.

Surprise me.
Let this all work out
perfectly…

Gasp in Amber.

So it seems
you held your breath
once, long ago,
now you can’t let go.

A gasp suspended in amber,
tension frozen in time.
Lost in the fallout,
though for the life of you,
you cannot recall the war.

Reason fails to quell
the emotions, so you bear living
the plaguing question
like a test of endurance,
never to fail, never to pass,
answers nowhere to be found.

Could be PTSD,
but what’s the T?
Schizophrenia?
DID?

What the fuck
is wrong with me?

Nothing Makes Sense.

Maybe it was getting off the Effexor mixed with the stress of trying to find a new apartment and a new job. Perhaps the mindfulness meditation has something to do with it, too. In any case, I feel an increased self-awareness lately — of automatic thoughts, relentless emotions, patterns of self-sabotage and so on. It is as if I am increasingly able to see much of what I have formerly identified as myself with more clarity and see them for the elaborate system of habit patterns that they are. Which is all well and good, though it has come paired with an apparent inability to change anything I have become aware of. I have discovered my personality, inner and outer — ego and persona — is but a masque, but I am unable to break out of it. There is this claustrophobic sense of imprisonment in my established patterns. It leaves me feeling as though I am dealing with my false self as I would another person, and I am incredibly disappointed, frustrated with and embarrassed by this person. In my head and often out loud when I’m alone I give myself pep talks, tell myself off, attempt to reason with myself. I threaten and try to coerce myself. For all my effort my masque remains the wall I keep slamming my head against, leaving behind no dents or cracks and certainly not breaking the stubborn barrier down.

To make matters worse, I have yet to get a call back for my follow-up appointment so I can get put back on mood meds — sad as it is that drugs have so far been the only thing that has managed to inspire positive change in my state of mind and life as a whole. If I were still on meds, I feel I would have gotten an apartment by now and a better job. In any case, I would not feel so emotionally unstable, so fearful and depressed, so fucking pathetic as I have lately.

As I said to the sexy psychologist upon my first appointment, I find it odd that if my alien and out-of-body experiences are truly internally generated and manifest due to stress that both have been entirely absent lately.

Nothing seems to make sense, even when I openly confess I’m a mess.

The Karma We Have Become.

No matter how far back you believe your personality development extends, the fact of the matter remains: all that we typically consider ourselves to be amounts to memory.

We are the sum of our previous choices. Our personalities are our karma. The ego is the cumulative result of a chain of actions we enacted. We may not have the episodic recall, but we embody the implicit memory. We are history, in this sense quite literally. We are habits of mind and body forged through our previous experience, however hidden or otherwise unavailable that previous experience might be for semantic breakdown or episodic display.

The question is: do we need to remember — episodically, semantically — before we can overcome the karma we have become?

Regurgitated Hellfire.

As the ever-ambiguous ‘they’ say,
a house divided cannot stand.
Behold the duplex
back on his bruised knees,
wondering: could it be
that to find and take the cure
itself might be suicide?
Could it be
I am the true disease?

At last, I say:
That’s it. Fuck it.
I know bullshit when I smell it.

Put the foot down
to ground the sole.
Refuse to submit
to this hell hole
dug of the hopeless,
full of sick.
Sooner break a rib just
to bend down,
gnaw off my own dick.

This stops here.
I am more than this,
stronger than this.

High time I
show life no mercy,
for it’s never been
so kind to me.
The rise higher just
to drop me has been the only
vague semblance
of a reprieve.

Regurgitated hellfire.
Relax, reframe.

Nietzsche was right,
what fails to kill you builds strength;
what succeeds, though,
perhaps does so considerately,
however much it feels
like the opposite.

Forever recycling,
the soul is idling…

I want a life of passion,
ambition, lack of fear,
some semblance
of security, stability.
I want the fuck
out of here.

Life’s ups and downs
are just reps to build muscle.
Aches and pains:
common side-effects.

Never stalling,
always evolving.

Of Parallel Lives & Points of Divergence.

Sometimes I imagine there is some parallel universe in which I am a successful writer and artist, financially stable, emotionally stable, entirely independent, confident and looked up to by others whom I frequently help and surrounded by people who’s friendships I take the time to nurture — free from the fear that rules my life here and by default necessitating my seemingly diametrically-opposing fate in this life. As if there is some pool of potential him and I both share and what one of us manifests, the other cannot; what one does not, the other must.

Yet if we met one another and both compared our lives in minute detail, what would we discover — what, ultimately, would be the departure point? When, where, how and why did our paths diverge?

In short: why am I so fucked up?

The Way Out.

You always run, run far away
as fast as you can go.
Fate hungry at your heels,
hot on the trail of hope.

And you endure it till you learn this.
Suffer through this recurrence.
As echoes of the ancient drown out
the dream until you earn it.

You fall, descend yet again
flat on your fucking face,
singing your song, “I don’t belong.”
Well, then: make yourself a place.

Suck it up. There’s work to do.
Don’t just lay down and let it bleed.
No excuse, you always choose.
Now: back up on your two left feet…

Greatest Enemy.

Beat the dead horse
into the ground, squeezed out
every drop of meaning,
so can I just leave
it behind now, walk away
to better things?

Please, I just
need to

find some inner peace
amidst the ever-brewing
cauldron of chaos I’m living in,
drop an anchor, grow roots
for my wandering mind.

Clear the path.
Out of my way,
wretched force
inside of me…