the depression acquired a sniper rifle
BANG! – industry
BANG! – humor
BANG! – creativity
BANG! – connection
hunting them down
with nothing to stop it
having destroyed my defenses long ago
it kills.
and all the bad things overrun the system,
gain influence,
make their authority, their residence seem permanent.
hard to imagine hope
when both imagination and hope were gunned down.
most things are hit initially with a nonlethal shot
and then slowly put to death…
ground down (sometimes tortured) over time
as I watch
helpless to do anything
becoming too starved to struggle,
exhausted against the original bonds
that tied me down so long ago
cutting into me and cutting off my circulation.
humor and creativity (wit and nuance) were my friends
and so liked by others
but they’re all gone now.
embarrassment and shame are left guarding the room,
though I still struggle when I can
against the persistent beatings of apathy and cynicism.
and honestly, hope is hard to kill;
cause it can shatter into so many tiny fragments
and go scurry off in every direction to hide
even lay dormant for impossibly long times
before peaking out again.
I haven’t seen light glance off a shard in a while
but I believe they are still there (proof)
waiting for the right sunbeam.
for now, forever, however
I am bound and gagged,
tied to a chair and knocked to the floor
left to ruminate and ridicule
my own histrionics
and to wonder how the hell
I’m supposed to parent while
lying on the floor tied to this chair.
exhaustion very slowly dragged the keyboard
to my hands so I could type this
but it was a challenge
being trussed up backwards and all
and it took about 6 months to slowly
peck it all out.
I can’t tell if its any good as I can’t see it
and most of the faculties that provide discernment
have been assassinated = good judgment, acumen, etc.
I’m afraid silliness might still be bouncing around in here
and I’m not sure that I ever had any
reticence to speak of.

expecting

January 29, 2015

life goes on
+ life goes on
you can’t shut it off
and expect to survive
expect respect
for staying alive
if I knew then what I know now
I’d still know nothing
and you’d still be my friend anyhow
+ everything I broke would still be broken
+ every hurt I spoke would still be spoken
and it would still all happen in slow motion
+ so fast it would be out of my control
I am the fraud with the heart of gold
just a fraud with a heart of gold
I can’t shut it off
or go back
or keep from getting old
or expect God
to be anything of my expecting
just a fraud with to many opinions
to expect respect for having nothing
to say that matters
regardless of conditions
it is hard to say anything
that matters
even with try after try after try
I am still alive
I can’t shut it off
or shut it out
life goes on regardless
of what I think about it.

we awoke to snow the other day
a bit unusual here
the kids went out (ill prepared) to play in it
with wet gloves and pink, swollen fingers

I wanted to go out
but I excused myself regarding my pj pants
and that I remember the treasure of playing alone
without adults.
I did make one snowball
and threw it at a telephone poll (I missed)
but mainly the snow served to more deeply and clearly
define the Woolf tracks at my door; prowling
surrounding me.
come. I want to be eaten – devoured
but my pockets don’t hold enough rocks
and I don’t have the energy to fill them
besides the river looks so cold
to just go walking in gasping
grasping a poorly made snowball
pj pants sagging off from the weight of the rocks,
besides Virginia didn’t have kids
playing on a hill in the near distance.

come Woolf and howl
it is mournful but meaningless.

another Woolf

#s

January 6, 2015

24 – and before is not anymore

25 – its strange & good to be alive
26 – seeing things that need a fix
27 – bills for pills and therapy sessions
28 – accept it all as a trick of fate
29 – would make a change if there was time
the big three zero – over trying to be a hero
31 – a little addition & adulthood has really begun
32 – duty is what there is to do
33 – the balance of circumstance and biology is reality
34 – scrape the edges, look for more
35 – still searching for the drive
36 – sick and tired of being tired and sick; the cliché sticks
37 – don’t worry much about hell or heaven
38 – a bit to soon for it to be too late
39 – and no one wants to hear me whine

but this year I’m 40.

still sad, stuck and silly.

its not helping

December 15, 2014

it feels like every movement
has to be painfully slow and purposeful
concentrate on this one thing
even to the pressing of the g or e or s
there it goes
press down on the key and the letter appears on the screen
a little faster now
no, don’t look cause it will all be blurry
shifting to the edge of your vision
out of focus
then snapping back
fuzzy letters giving you vertigo
slow down

no groan-ups allowed

November 9, 2014

i think money is better than work
work sucks
money is great
and the two dont seem to have a whole lot to do with each other
so, there you go
debt is easy and depressing and impossible and probable
even though we are careful
and i am a skilled little sexton
i am also a depressed and anxious one
without the possibility of ambition
there is just no money or romance
in exhausting yourself physically
and hurting and being afraid
both financially and of getting older.
it takes years to become a journeyman
or master craftsman and make money as a true tradesman
might as well be a doctor
or learn Japanese
plus most guys slave for someone else
take their paycheck and go (like me for example)
they dont give a shit about what theyre doing
and theyre still all better at it than me
but here i am
stuck and whinging (i like that word –
though its so close to whining its almost pointless to know it)
and winging it – constantly anxious
because i never really feel like i know what im doing
no one has ever taught me any of this stuff
i just kind of had to figure it out
and so i still feel like im doing it all wrong
plus i spend half my time just moving heavy things
my life is a waste
oh by the way
i have a depression problem and am not a reliable narrator
ignore my bullsnit – thats right i said bullsnit – for no reason
if it wasnt for my now crippling anxiety
i would go back to school for a therapy license of some sort
it would be much less stressful in the long run i think
and definitely better money
and everybody wants a depressed, anxious therapist.
i still live in the same place and do the same nothing and my stomach hurts everyday and i keep getting worse as i get older and i am afraid of this and im trying new meds and they always fuck with me but my marriage is exceptional and i get better looking every year. i am so stressed and paranoid but i listen to a lot of good stuff (pod-casts books music etc) to unsuccessfully distract my self from that. being a parent sucks but i like my kids as friends though the anxiety and depression gets in the way of that a lot but i am a gentle man so my kids love me a ton and thats pretty good and im no good at writing anymore cause this is an attempt to be funny

sorry now im tireder and dont want to write anymore
i want to go on a beautiful hike
i dont want to discourage anyone or be a downer
i dont really know anything cause im just a sexton:
a holy handyman a cloistered custodian a justified janitor
a sanctified super – high maintenance
thats me
your friend

aaackkk. its very 1st world educated middle class
to feel this miserable and poor while having so much – its disgusting.
place ourselves before the world… we are not poor
but i wish so hard that i could give my family more.
money is stupid
besides what do i really sacrifice to provide better?…
not enough, i just drink really gross cheap ass-beer,
thats what it is = ass-beer.
my Unfair Advantage still believes that i write songs that are good enough to bring in a bit of cash
i dont know (i doubt it) and cant get my act (in every way) together enough to find out anyway
a best friend once said that i had “production-anxiety” and was so right
i think about that phrase all the time and it constantly almost changes my life and the way i do things
maybe today it will
maybe today it will
maybe today is different

lately i’ve been such a mess that i want to ask people for prayers
i want santa god to help me out
anything to escape me
but there is no way out
not even suicide
couldnt do that to my people
and death is scarier than life anyway
too much of a wuss to live successfully or die properly
or believe anything or to have hope
hip hope hooray
wow, i am being such a downer
such a whinger
such a groan-up
i will stop now

what are reasonable expectations?

i don’t really know where to go from that question.

sleep, i guess.
thats the big one.
i used to assume that everyone was tired.
once upon…
a lady asked me how i was
(which at the time was typically low)
i didnt want to tell the truth, that could be obnoxious
but i have trouble saying “fine” like i’m supposed to
so i thought i had the perfect answer and i responded
“oh, same as everyone else i suppose”
she got serious and asked how everybody felt
and my response was: tired.
she said, “I’m not tired”.
and seemed genuinely surprised that everyone else was.
honestly, very presumptuous of me to speak for others
but surely this lady is an outlier.
she has like six kids and is super active all the time with everything
but not tired.
is everyone tired? (besides her)
i am too tired to even write this
that which i am writing
or are you too tired to tell
those who which i are reading.
can you be too tired to procrastinate?
i mean, it seems impossible now
surely i would fall to my knees and weep
if i tried to keep writing, to do anything
but whats to say it will be any easier tomorrow
to order the following into proper meaning
more sleep is unlikely
but i cant do it
put it off
you can read all this later. – oh, sorry.

how are you? says the van…
i am tired. says the wheel.

cage

October 16, 2014

my brother (in-law) always asks:
if you were an animal right now, what would you be?
i like this game.
i like to hear the kids answer
and what the adults say if they’re willing to play.
well, since you asked…

i would be a (non-specific) zoo animal.
see, here’s the thing about zoo animals:
for the circumstances of survival? they’ve got it made.
in their modern enclosures
well fed and comfortable, safe,
taken care of, even loved.

i’ll be honest,
as i sit here and write this
i think, “i’m failing to explain myself”.
on the way home, in the car, it seemed like a good metaphor
and i had it worked out on so many levels
that i was surprised.
i mean – all metaphors eventually dry up,
break down and face their limitations
but this one seemed nicely apt
and remarkably nuanced and multi-whatevered.
now i’m not even sure what i was trying to get at.
plus there’s plenty folks who find zoos sad / repugnant
and would have good arguments against what i just said.

but i’m not debating anything here, just wandering…

at the zoo:
when we pass the pumas
their eyes follow my golden-haired child
and i feel their feral thoughts: …food.
the flamingos walk around mumbling at one another;
goofy and striking.
the petting area full of harassed goats
and a carpet of brown pellets.
the enclosed, engineered spaces full of thousands of creatures
worlds away from where their wild fellows are mostly dying.
and they have no idea where they are or what their world is,
and probably don’t care.
but i once saw a local squirrel lose its grip
on the net covering the snow leopard enclosure – falling.
that was an intense few minutes.
but when the chase was over;
the squirrel was breathing heavy on the outside
of the net considering its unfortunate clumsiness;
dexterity, good luck, and freedom…
while on the other side sat a frustrated beautiful beast.
born and bred in captivity, languid and lackadaisical.
then the squirrel had to rush off
to its frantic existence of foraging and survival
while the leopard yawned, stretched,
found a comfortable shady spot
and lay down for a rest after the excitement.
and there it is.

if animals were people
and had some kind of idea about themselves
and feelings about themselves one way or another
as a success or failure in their animalness
what kind of people would your animal be?
(that was stupid but i’m not gonna change it.)

i don’t want to be pacing the cage
but i like being safe and warm,
loved, cherished and taken care of.
our instinct is to be feral
but we all enjoy having our bellies rubbed.
as my mind flies and dives
runs and climbs and leaps
exalting in wild beauty;
i sit in my cage
roll onto my back and wait.

hello… can you hear me… hello…
hey, God… your cuttin’ out…
im going through a tunnel…
and i don’t see any light at the end of it.

so, what to say about prayer?
(without really thinking very much about it – 
cause i don’t feel like thinking)
well, ive definitely fallen out of the practice.
exempli gratia, i.e., e.g. :
the other day i was sextoning down on the basement level
at work on a stubborn (plumbing) problem.
i got frustrated enough to say out loud
“c’mon God gimmee a break here.”
(mens rea? well, it was the men’s room)
and i was out of character and out of sorts.
the exclamation did not shock me because of banality
but because after the exclamation, i immediately thought,
oh, He can’t hear me,
you can’t get cell phone reception down here.

i was done with the job and half way up the stairs
before laughing out loud at myself:
wow, i am really out of practice

go and do likewise

September 29, 2014

a neighbor, a friend
one who shows mercy.
the inconvenienced, the kind;
you are these for reading.

one of the unspoken rights of friendship is standing permission to inconvenience each other without the fear of reprisal, rejection, resentment or disconnect.

but my Samaritan instincts are lacking
and i need time when someone asks something of me;
to get over my petulance and my tiny self.
yet time is often exactly what can’t be granted –
that being the nature of needing a sudden favor.
(oh me, to suffer inconvenience, to interrupt my privilege)
the thing is
an unplanned conversation can take as long
and possibly be as inconvenient as a sudden favor,
but a good talk happens all the time and goes mostly unnoticed.
but when its an actual physical favor;
why do i want recognition for having been inconvenienced?
shouldn’t one just feel good for being good?
unless you’re talking to me at night…
no one will feel good about that
cause i wont let you go to sleep
though your eyes will be drooping
and you can no longer focus or pay attention
and you will feel like weeping unless i go away…
still i will be talking and talking and failing to say anything.
sort of like… say… me blogging
the recognition in such cases should be me going away.
sorry.

usually you can’t really know how
the other person is put out when you ask a favor
(or have a conversation)
even if they let it be known that its not good timing for them.

im thinking about a time i asked someone for a ride suddenly
or another
when i was with someone who had to borrow an old unused truck.
small things, but there was hesitation before agreement
and i cannot possibly know what it really cost to grant the favor,
what happened during that moment’s hesitation,
they may not be able to articulate it themselves.
but people are so good.

no matter how small the favor
the only possible response is gratitude.

one thing that none of us need
and none of us need be
is a scorekeeper.

forgiveness and gratitude walk around hand in hand
under the auspices of mercy
who in turn is acting for love.

and i am an incredibly clumsy friend.
though i love and i am so loved.
i have seen so many gracious, generous people;
friends, neighbors – inconvenienced and kind.
who am i that my time should be so precious?
my friends are wonderful
and my neighbors have been pointed out to me
by a very reliable source;
i just want to be humble
and go and do likewise.