sex

Shadowlands

“When I was younger I could hold my own
My right hand was thunder and my left was stone

Now I ain’t as handsome as I was back then

So I’m takin’ my chances in the shadowland”

– Steve Earle –

There’s a part of me that cringes man. Cringes when I set to write. Because man I am not so keen on the mopey and sentimental crap that seems to float to the top most lately. I mean I know where it comes from and what draws it out. It’s this thing, a sort of talent I have for seeing goodbye before it’s time to go. I can smell a heartbreak coming and see a long-lost friend before we even say hello. And for me goodbye ain’t ever too far away. It’s not like some weepy whiny teenage girl thing, you know the game “Why don’t anybody ever stay?” you know the adolescent broken heart syndrome.

Nah man, for me it goes a lot harder and colder. And in that sadder and lonelier. It’s been a long, long time since I went out to the world on my own. And right now this is the longest I’ve spent in one place. Through bad choices and self-destruction I have burned most bridges and kept on moving. And now I haven’t got anywhere left to run and I can’t get very far. My heart is here with my little girl. It’s hard to run from that anchor. But believe me brother I want to. I want to go till there is nowhere left and the road has turned to dust.

Most days I get by. I set these goals and points of reference. I say to myself “Okay boy, you can’t go nowhere or make that jump till the second Sunday of next month because you can’t make a bad anniversary when it suppose to be a happy time for…” I make these deals with myself. Stay long enough to see this or do that. Or to hit that calendar point. When I go I want to be sure it’s understood I made my choice. I made my run and it was without any implication on anyone’s part. It was all me and at my time.

What going means…Well that’s my choice too. And I ain’t speaking it to no one. It’s just my thing. My last choice that you or anyone like you can take or compromise. Sometimes I just want to go see the mountains once again. There’s magic there. The Gods sleep at their feet. Other times I want to hit an ocean and let it all pass me by, forget it all. Sort of like Otis Redding sang. And sometimes. Maybe more often than not I just want to close my eyes and make the world go far, far away. It’s all a matter of degrees. Usually on how ostracized and lonely I feel. And on how badly I want to feel someone close to me.

Because for it all I would trade almost anything just for that one thing. To touch someone, to laugh and to fall crazy mad in love. To make a world that belongs to no one but us. To be the great secret. There is healing in the laughter and soft, gentle touch . But I just can’t seem to break out enough to let someone come close enough. I can’t find the kind and understanding hand. I am wired all wrong and life has left me burned and bent. But I can still love…But truth is that I won’t get a chance to again. And I think maybe I’d have to think long and hard about if that person should be burdened with my scars and broken pieces.

Just ghosts man…All ghosts. They’re here tonight. And I’ve got to stand them down alone. And pretty soon I figure I’ll lose the strength to run them off.

Be well.

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The squeaking wheel…

“It isn’t enough for your heart to break because everybody’s heart is broken now.”
– Allen Ginsberg –

Sometimes I think I know what I want to write here, I set out to say something specific. This ain’t one of those times.

So here I am sort of dancing around the pieces and thoughts. There’s no music and nobody to see. I feel like Dylan calling for his Tambourine Man. Maybe I have no one to meet, And the ancient empty street’s too dead for dreaming…You know how I mean?

There’s a loneliness that has settled on me. It’s not heavy or difficult. But it is listless and tired. I find myself unable to reach past it and connect very much anymore. I look at the calendar and chose dates for some great escape. Something I may never do. But take comfort in the planning. A big run at the sunset. Maybe I am too cowardly, maybe I’m too selfish. Maybe much to my own chagrin I am hanging on to some vague hope. That there may be a lightning bolt come down on me. A re-awakening of Frankenstein’s monster. Trundling and falling alive. Why is this so hard? Seriously. Without the fancy words and the crazy prose. Why is life never easy, not even for a minute. Sometimes I even find myself looking at the commercials for antidepressants and thinking that maybe that’s my play, maybe that’s what’s wrong. But I have tried that. And it just fucks my libido and empties my emotions in some bland homogenized stew of nothingness.

I’d rather live in misery than  live in that medicated shade of gray. You can send that quote to Pfizer. My God what a terrible place to be. Living in that dullness. I believe I was built to question, to struggle and turn over stones and examine the secret words I find there. To turn boldly into the Beast, the thing that most people run their whole lives from. The black places, the deepest nights and darkest urges. That’s the Beast, I reach for it and get dragged into the fight. And I want that. But it seems the one truth I know about myself is that I have to give up to live amongst you. Medicated and placated. A dial to be turned. Man what a miserable thing to be…And the most troublesome part in all that is the people I see swimming in all the bullshit, all the acronyms and diagnosis’ and the symptoms that they manifest simply out of obligation to some label. It’s a crazy world folks, to be crazy is to live.

I think too much and my head races and I can’t find anyone I truly can talk to. So I feel lonely. It’s the trade-off. I get lonely, but man do I ever think up a universe. When I was a kid they were testing me for all kinds of intellect ratings and the emotional pieces that get nailed to it there was a teacher who broke the fourth wall and spoke to me like a human. And what he told me is that “There is a fine line between genius and madness and you must always be careful how far you tip either way.” And he was right. In my whole life there have been very few truths told to me and that was one of them. One of the others came from my old man who used to say “Boy the only way you can do anything is the hard way…And I don’t have a clue why.” He was right too. As a matter of fact I have come close to getting “The Hard Way” tattooed where I can always see it.

And in this all I find I miss the company of the fairer sex…But I got to ask. Are you all completely loopy?

No elaboration there. None needed.

Be well.


What I Got.

“People have to talk about something just to keep their voice boxes in working order so they’ll have good voice boxes in case there’s ever anything really meaningful to say.”

– Kurt Vonnegut –

In a few days I turn 39. THIRTY FUCKING NINE! And here’s the truth. The honest to goodness truth, if I’d have known I was going to live this long I would have done more and taken better care of my life. But I have lived like a terminal patient…No plans, just funeral arrangements. I was startled when I made it to thirty. Geez man I was even kind of taken aback that I survived to twenty. I mean I turned 19 in a treatment center for addiction and alcoholism 1500 miles from my home. And I sure as hell wasn’t done tearing myself apart.  Man I did it for…Well a long, long time after that. And in all that time I have learned things. Observed things, gained opinion the hard way, by living it.

So in the spirit of earned wisdom, here is what an old dog thinks about as the time turns…

WAR – Or to be more exact, the current conflict where young men and sometimes women die far away from their homes. These are neatly covered corpses, draped in flags. Processed in a somber tradition. But the truth is that these folks don’t die for ideals and beliefs. They die for money, the true reason most of these kids are there is because THEY’VE GOT NOTHING ELSE! THere’s no rich kid in a foxhole. These volunteer soldiers are mercenaries. They do it for money for education. They do it so they can access benefits Walmart or McDonald’s won’t give them. And in many cases it’s the only job they can get. These lost lives were lost before they ever set foot in some desert. And that’s why we can’t win. No matter how many of the “enemy” they kill. It cannot be won, because they are fighting for a belief and for a cause. And they won’t just stop. It will go on and on. And if western powers pull out it will still go on. Unfortunately these belief systems are violent and are antagonistic. You cannot legislate morality or peace. The human animal doesn’t work that way. And you sure as hell can’t shoot a man full of get along. It’s almost cause and maybe if someone would just say that, cut our losses and bring back all those kids. Give them decent wages and a chance at a good life at home. Maybe in time, a long, long time the rest of the world might just fall behind us. We need to learn to lead by example, not might.

MUSIC – Music today SUCKS! It’s plastic and tinsel. I recently watched a documentary about a band and it talked about their struggles 30 years ago to  get off the ground. They spent 10 years changing line ups, playing shitty gigs, driving in cold vans and living for the music. And the whole time they were growing and becoming better musicians. But now there are television shows and networks who pre-empt the experience of growth and development and in 4 or 5 auditions and a few special evenings featuring the music of some lame ass “legend” these pieces of crap become celebrities first and then maybe they sing a little. Play a little guitar. It’s manufactured and contrived.  I hate it…There is no exceptions to this. And I think what makes me most annoyed is that you all eat it….Hey world, just because someone puts a pile of dog shit on a pretty plate don’t mean you have to eat it. Come on man have some dignity and taste.

SEX – Okay this is a quick note. To women mostly. I love you all, you’re attractive, sensual and smell nice. But get the fuck over yourselves. Really. I know this is going to sound slightly misogynist and angry. But it’s what I see. You have the right parts and even if you’re funny looking and the most annoying creature on earth, there are men that are going to want to touch you in places your bathing suit covers. And you know what? I hate being told what to like or being given this bullshit beauty standard, this myth of the “perfect woman”. The blond cookie cutter chick that is drooled over on TV and at car shows, dance clubs and shoe stores are fucking boring. I love curvy girls, I love a woman with thoughts and interests. I love a woman with a nice laugh and sweet voice. But please….Please. Stop taking yourself so fucking seriously. I see these girls every day. Ones that believe that because some rutted up stud on a Saturday night swore to them that they were beautiful. Doesn’t mean we all are going top fall over you. Example. I see this girl on a daily basis. I smiled at her the first few times I saw her and was just being friendly. I never got a response to the smile not even a returned smile. So I figure fuck it, she’s a douchebag…That’s okay we all got our crutches. I had no intention of approaching her or trying to talk her up. But now every day I see her now I am quietly amused to see quite intently trying seem like she isn’t noticing me, it’s that out of the corner of her eye watching me to see if I am looking. Which I am, but not for the reasons she thinks. And when she walks past me she does it with her nose in the air and a look of arrogance. And it amazes me. I know a few women like this. Men are assholes and clueless when it comes to just what they are like. But damn girls you’re a delusional bunch…For the most part. I need to add that there are times where I see a woman and am just taken aback by how beautiful she really is.  And she has no idea. She has done nothing in particular to look beautiful, in fact in many cases she has been told by the media and by the pricks and prongs in the world that she isn’t. But her light, her smile, her eyes, her shape or maybe just the energy she shines makes her absolutely stunning.  And I of course become shy and can’t say anything, because I am in fact no better off than I was when I was 14 and used to blush when a girl smiled at me.

Except I’ve got some wicked moves…I’m like Kung Fu Love…Just saying…Ladies if you want to know how just you wait and see.

Wow! My inner pimp just struck…Maybe I should erase that? Naaaaaah!

WORK – This is a short thing but important. If you work in an office or you work in some capacity that allows you sit around fucking with a computer all day. You don’t work hard. Don’t tell me you do. I don’t care what some sitcom tells you about the dog eat dog world of cubicles. You’ve got it pretty sweet. Okay Dilbert? Until you’ve served slop to hungry fat faced ignorants or worked in heat that will melt your clothing, or shoveled shit all day you know nothing about hard work. I work hard. Harder than many of you. I am not bragging (well yeah I am but I am attempting to be modest) but I come home after spending a full day on my feet, covered in burns, oil and cuts. I get to sit down MAYBE 30 minutes on a good day and that’s during breaks.  I made my choices. I am a machine operator. Actually a die caster. I am responsible for my life. But it makes me irate when I hear someone complain about how hard it is for them at their air-conditioned little cubical farm. I mean I know it’s a bitch when someone messes with Troll dolls and pictures of you and your BFF being “wild and crazy” on your last vacation. But really. Be aware, you’re lucky. Hell I know I am lucky. There are people out there, even right here in my city, that would want to do what I do, to make what I make. There is some poor young guy who is dealing with entitled selfish pricks for minimum wage while mopping up shit who would give anything to get a chance to do my job. I see them coming in whenever we post an ad and they interview. It may be tough. But it’s respectable. And I am grateful I live in a country where I can make a living wage and drink clean water and believe what I want and I can live in a space that in many other nations is a home for multiple people. Every night I go to sleep thankful for my own furniture, my own home and my fridge with food in it. I’ve known poverty real fucking gone hungry poverty. But it’s still nothing like the poverty the MAJORITY of the world lives in.

FAITH – I don’t have a clue…I just can’t believe in anything anymore. It doesn’t add up.

FATHERHOOD – Tomorrow is Father’s Day and I have been thinking about my dad. And about my own daughter. Here’s all I can conclude. Nothing has been so heartbreaking and rewarding as being a father. Sometimes at the same moment.

And I miss my dad, very much tonight. I miss the man he may have been. As a grandpa. As a father. He would have fussed over my little girl and never missed it when she wore a new little dress or did something amazing. He would have sat through endless run-throughs of the ABC song and Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and he would have loved it. He’d be so proud of her. She’s clever and funny and willful and all the things he taught me to be.

But he’s gone and he never even got a chance to hear her say “Grandpa” and maybe in a life full of things I can regret that is one of the biggest ones.

LIFE – Lately I am left wondering why…

Be well.


Heart, disease


“Everybody wants to be somebody’s somethin’
Ain’t nobody wants to be blue
Ain’t nobody anywhere ever loved nothin’
Half as much as I love you
Somebody somewhere said “love is a prison”
But no one really wants to be free
I’d have to be crazy to ever think someone
Could love a nobody like me”

– Steve Earle –

I heard it said that true love is when you love someone despite of their faults. But brother that just sounds kind of snooty and condescending. I think maybe true love is when you love someone for their faults. For the flaws and defects. Because it’s that what makes them human, makes them unique and makes them yours. Ever stood close enough to a face to see the creases and pores, the texture of the skin. It’s in these tiny places that secrets are best told, when you reach up a hand and gently touch their cheek and draw them to you. And in that kiss, there’s a secret place.

Man there’s so many fools out there. And not the good kind. Yeah there’s a good kind of fool. One that will do whatever it takes to give love back. And one that knows that pushing the dark is the only way to find the light. But the bad kind is the ones out there with their plastic thin eyes, looking for the window dressing and tinkling lights. Who don’t see beauty, they only see shape. They look for the perfect number, the perfect ride, the perfect badge. Brother they spend so much time searching for the trophy. And goddamn if their might be a person attached.

It’s been my experience that there’s a lot of men out there who view women as nothing more than a life support system for tits and ass. Women are an unfortunate attachment to the orifices that best satisfy their frictional needs to reach orgasm. Harsh isn’t it. But it’s true. And believe ol’ hoss I have traveled in rarefied circles and it’s the same in factories as in circles of the “enlightened and educated”. They just call the game a different name.

And women, well if I had a dollar for every time I heard “I am not a material type” or “I just want a guy who cares and  can make me laugh” I’d be a rich motherfucker. And if I had two dollars for every one of them girls that turned out to be full of shit. Well Bill Gates would have nothing on me…Except maybe a real fine haircut. Women seem to be caught up in the accoutrement, the accessory and pret-a-porte of the man they want around. They want to parade the man out and show him off and have him win a blue ribbon like some prize pony in a 4H show. And as for not being material…Uh huh…And I see women cruising the library and soup line all the time. It’s just the hottest meeting place ever.Women are petty and filled with a weird sense of entitlement. It’s kind of sad.

Now I know right about now you’re saying “Hey asshole that ain’t me! Or my friends, family and business associates” And to that I say BULLSHIT! It just is the truth, it is as it ever has been. Like the cavemen, the man needed to drag home the biggest bounty to mount the hottest cavewoman. I read Clan of the Cave Bear….I know man! I say this sort of as a joke but maybe it is the truth, maybe the wiring is done that way and it’s set in the circuits and veins. It’s how the animal is built.

But ain’t we suppose to be enlightened? Ain’t we suppose to be evolved?

I know there are exceptions. But really the fact is that these are few and far between. And they ain’t found hanging around coffee shops and martini bars trying to get the television poses just right and act like the perfect ensemble cast. The group that is just so refreshing and witty. Without having a clue you’re just sheep. Nah man, the real exceptions the true and fine hearts are lonely and lonesome. They spend too much time alone and too much time healing broken hearts because they’ve tried so god-damned hard to find that other one, the one that sees them, the one that values them and doesn’t have a grocery list or flag to wave. And they’re so sore that sometimes they are fooled by the kindness and soft words of wolves in sheep’s designer clothing. They believe in “Maybe this time…”

And they hurt for it, but they plug on. And in the rare case they find another of their kind. You don’t hear from them or even know them. You know why? Because they don’t need you, they don’t need me or anyone. They got each other and the world is just big enough for them. And at night when they curl up into each other and sleep, it’s the sleep of them that have traveled a long, long mile and finally found home.

Me? I don’t know what I am or where I fit. I do know that I have known girls who when they smiled at me I felt like I won something and I didn’t know what or how. And so whatever it was I did to make ’em smile like that I swore to remember because I always wanted to see it again. I’ve known women who are not typical anything. Different physically and different intellectually and emotionally. And I have loved them like mad. Like the last of the hardcore troubadours. But it has gone bad, either by my hand and my stupid lost little man trip. Or they turned out to be just like the rest. Just another off the rack and predictable life form. But mostly not. In fact I am fucking grateful. I have known and do know some incredible women. And I have had some incredible loves. They just seem to fall away. And it makes me sad. But I guess it’s just like any old cowboy…They sing a sad, sad song. And every rose…

Holy fuck! I am quoting Poison lyrics. It’s time to close this down. That’s a sign of brain damage you know. Quoting hair metal power-ballads. Maybe I am having an aneurysm?

Alright then, get my bandanna…I’m done.

Be well.


Exorcism and forgotten names.


“Walking outside our old house
Tragically dressed trying to coax your ghost out
There’s some things I’m ready to confront
Some that I didn’t do and some that I’ve done”

-Matthew Ryan-

I stand here, out on the sidewalk, out in the drive. In the same spot I stood a thousand times before. It’s the terminus point. Or it was. The spot where to the left or right I could still run. Off and away into some other reality. I hesitate. I did that so many times before too. I would shudder and tremble here. Afraid of what was there inside. It was not a new feeling. Not a new fear at all. As a child I would stand in one certain place outside my father’s house. There I’d fill with a fright so deep I couldn’t feel anything else. I’d lose my breath and whimper in the way a frightened puppy might. I was little else there. A scared animal. The machine hadn’t been built yet. See there I would prepare for battle. There I would tense myself for the inevitable blow, the beating and the shame.

That was one I never whispered to you in the dark at night. How you scared me so. How you made me that child again. How I would wait at the spot outside the house. Waiting to find if my leaden feet would move forward or I would run. Run away. The way I did when I was still just a boy. A child without the means or mechanization  to survive in a world I didn’t understand. I must have run from you too. Why else would there be so much left unsaid? So much left in anger and pain. Why else would I have never said goodbye.

So now we touch the edges of our anger. Mustn’t ever wade fully in. The battles have been fought, the picture frames smashed. The vases hurled and the names called.  And to get back there we’d have to dig through the bones and dust of a closet we’ve closed, looking for the armour we wore. The weapons we sharpened from the secrets we told. The faults we laid bare. The weak spots only a lover still covered in the fine sheen of intimate sweat and the smell of sex would know. Those terrible knives we hand to our assailant in blind faith and a naive trust. The belief that this time..This one…They wouldn’t ever turn the gun on me.

What have you got now. The gossip and slanderous asides? Well love, I am here to say most of your accusations are true. And are rightful. Most…Not all. but the 1 in 5 that is wrong, need I plead my case? Should I fight you for that little bit of ground? No I won’t. Not anymore. I am the animal/machine. I am a foul thing. I try to live as best as I can and I try to do what’s right. But find always myself in the wrong. I am truly indefensible. You are right. I am all those things…The names, the shames and the disgusting slights. But I try, I always tried for better. I honestly tried to be better. For you. Yes for you…Does this shock you? I am sincere when I say this. I tried to live past my scars and the tumbling rocks of a falling mountain that is my history and my learned dances. But I failed. I always fail. But I always try.

See maybe you never understood. Yes dear I know you said you did. But you never really understood. I was raised by wolves, I timed my breathes with the tides and learned by laying my palms against the walls and feeling for a hum. Like some mute demolition man. I know how to fight only because I forgot how to care what happened to me. I am the end result of a complete loss of a sense of self-preservation. I learned how to fuck because I could make you close your eyes and shudder. I could hide inside your body as I stared at the back of your head. Animal lust is easy. I knew no truth there. I learned how to lie because I was so full of incomplete links and shame. I couldn’t dare tell you the truth. I couldn’t be who I am. I couldn’t just be like everyone. Because I was always less than everyone. So I gave you the Hollywood version. A creation I idealized. The thing I wanted most to be. But could never really maintain. And so when the facade fell and the dirty windows came clean. You saw. I was the mess in the middle of an empty room. But I warned you. I did. In the beginning. I always warn them that enter the cells and cages. That they really don’t want to be there. That they must keep their distance. And I even showed you the scars. But in some act maybe worthy of sainthood you chose to carry on. To step in closer. But you never really believed, never really…Understood.

Does it matter now that I am sorry. That as a man who has come through hell and found it to be of my own making. I am sorry. I made my messes. I did my own cutting. I have learned. That’s of little consolation and probably no benefit to you now. But the man standing here now. He’s different. Scarred and afflicted with a terrible case of  battle fatigue. Any movement of the heart makes me fill with fear and I flash to terrible yesterdays. But I am learning. And now I try to live each day a little at a time…An inch an hour, two feet a day. I don’t expect too much from life. There is no grand parade, no victory party and I will never drink from the cup. The myth I was is dead. And all that is left is the living sum of my errors. An equation that is still solving itself. And that you are not here for this, I am sorry. I honestly am. I wanted so much to be this before our house of cards fell.

But here I am anyway. Out on this spot waiting. Waiting to see a light in a darkened window. Even though I know you’re not there, you don’t live there anymore. But just in case…I leave these words out here for you. In case you should come by, in case you should toe over the rock I hide them under. In case you need to close the door one last time. In case you need.

I will choose this time to turn and walk away calmly, with poise and dignity. The stride and cadence of a man who has been to war and come back limping and lost in far away stares.

Be well.