(poem and bold sub-poem(this is an experiment)
There is no redemption that erases the memory of violence.
There is no way out…of it.
Pain is the unifier, so normal plain and clear.
The past is expected – the future a fear.
I could be this me for ever and ever.
What matters a prayer?
What matters a dream?
What matters a love?
Everything is in ruins; within – without me.
No vessel holds or contains me.
…everything is fly away temporary;
ephemeral like angels on birthdays.
Wanting has no power, so I remain want-less…
I am the servant of disaster. The brother of blight in the famine field -I have killed the innocence in my children. I have cut their hair and thrown them into the world – shivering, naked and abandoned (This was all I knew how to do). I am as afraid now, as I was when I was a beaten thing in the shadow of my dust bowl father’s purgatory.
Where can an “I” be in the “begin again” world of the “make believe” – in the world of its salvation? I know that I came from a little house of horrors on Rexton Street; that I was raised by torturers. See me knock on the door of the mask maker – I want to be his chameleon.
If I discard a little of myself each day… will I finally be nothing enough to wither away?
I promised to do this… I promised – to never be too much to make the mommy-daddy monsters be afraid. When the mommy-daddy monsters are afraid something “worser” than death happens
I am made the “never was“. That is what it will be like when-if-when the shadow ever shows the parents where the lights turn on.
Devils and demons ride my back whispering commands – they say “being nothing is better than being something”… They say “know your place, be useless – never change”.
Why (if all roads lead to the same old place of death and fear) try?
The stigma of not being able to change or make a difference in my life or in the lives of others will be my legacy. I am no longer the “Doubt Man”. I am the “Certain Man” – certain that what I do will fail. I am now the “Why Try Man” – the “Lets Fall Down Man” – the “I Ache Like A Stabbed Doll Man”.
This is the part in my story where I the writer reveal that I am a liar…
That I have only written about a part of me. What I have written is true, but only partially true. I live between the tension of what I have written and another truth. The truth is I changed after realizing that hope is an “action” – but only of the hopeless. I know now that I am a knower; a chess player advancing bishops.
The past is shabby, flabby, and corpulent; a poser; a body building contestant who before competitions pumps himself up enough to make himself look scary – after hours smoking in his dressing room his wrinkles become a road map to the way he has always felt like a has-been.
I am not that failure. I know that I will not be radiant or glorious if I wear my mother’s jewelry; I will never be her shiny thing. I cannot fit in my fathers boxing trunks – or win his battles – it is not possible, because I cannot do so as a child…I am grown; a man now with my own destiny.
I will now be me, in my own skin; seeing through lies even as I tell them. The past has only the power I give it. It is only a story; an important story, but not the story happening right now. I am glad to have lived it. I am glad I remember it – all its details. But while I am interested in interviewing its ghost, I am not interested in being inhibited by them.