All this craziness has got me by the heart. It is blurring my vision and fills me with more sadness than I can almost bear. I spend more time now looking for salvation than writing. I was going through some of the old stuff looking for some inspiration and found with some lines that I'm actually proud of having written.
From Lonesome Toothbrushes and Unused Pillows
I mumbled the word, "Fuck," to no one in particular as I was realizing that there would be nothing short of blinding myself like Oedipus to keep from bumping into the broken pieces of my past, and that life is a lot like that weird friend who tells you jokes no one else thinks are funny.
From Friendship is a Sulfur Match
I didn't send that card for the same reason that I don't like to talk to the grieving family at funerals, I don't know what to say and know there ain't really nothing to say. I don't want to say that thing's are going to be okay; that it just takes some getting used to it because they ain't, and it don't. The death of a loved one hurts you till the day you die.
I have become somewhat obsessed with writing things down so that I might leave something behind that acknowledges the fact that I was once alive at this particular time and place on a planet zooming through the fucking universe like a Clayton Kershaw fastball, and that I once mattered somewhat and saw things good and bad, and knew people good and bad, laughed and cried, and fell over and got back up.
It's just that words at funerals are, well, words at funerals. We so much want them to say a lot more than they do. Looking back though, I wish sometimes that we could have told each other how we felt without the expletives, the sarcasm, and the code words, without having to show that we were the sons of men, and that sons of men don't use sissy words like love when they talk to their friends.
From The Prodigal in the Land of the La La
I keep putting it off thinking somehow that Jesus is going to come back someday and handle all the people who did nothing but eat, waste their life, and defecate. We think that they are all out living dirty on the street, but they'll be plenty of bon-bon eaters bursting into flames up in Beverly Hills too.
From Running in Circles
We understood that spinning around things is just what we earthlings do, and it didn't matter a whole damn mouse fart where the axis of the circle was; it's the ass end of things going around it that makes life tolerable.
People say that order always descends into chaos once the primary energy source has been exhausted. I think it works the other way too. Once there was a time and place when I was young where I could let go and live without restraint for few hours at a time, howling at the moon if I so wanted or even pissing on a flat rock while howling at the moon. It was wild and chaotic; it was liberating, it was unscripted and totally ignorant, and it was a lot more fun than anything I've ever done since.
Then the fire ran out of wood, cardboard and car seats, and life quickly descended into order as most life eventually does.
From My Grandma’s Ghost
I find it interesting that most avowed atheists attack the idea that mankind created God out of fear of death and the unknown. I find no shame in that position. Instead, it speaks powerfully about mankind's needs. I have no problem with the idea that God came out of the void in response to our desire to believe that life has a greater purpose than becoming a transcendent form of high-end fertilizer.
If I needed a toothpick and whittled down a twig to use, no one would have a problem with it. Yet creating a means to deal with existential fear and anxiety by whittling down a bit on the immensity of creation to create something to clutch on in a hour of despair hardly seems that crazy to me.
From Sporks Are Made From Mashed Potatoes
So, I am sitting there in Popeye's Louisiana Chicken, trying my damned well best not to get this book greasy, cursing my decision to eat chicken while I'm reading it, and the damn spork breaks in the middle of the chicken breast, so I start cussing a blue streak.
And it dawns on me that sporks are a lot like atheistic thinking and the lunatic politics of the extreme left. They handle mashed potatoes pretty well, but suck when you really need them.
From On Birth and Rebirth
Thirty-nine years ago I became a man. It was the night that my firstborn daughter came into this world. I was 28 years old, and you would think that age alone would qualify me to be a grown-up, but it wasn't the case. Boys grow up slower than girls, and I was still clinging with both hands to adolescence, afraid that the grown up world would turn me into my daddy who worked like a dog and never seemed to smile.
From Waving at Ghosts
Maybe we use graveyards more to separate life from death. The walls we build around them and the gates we place upon their entry ways are meant more symbolically to keep death within certain boundaries so that the knowledge of death is limited and restricted and does not come out to play in the land of the living.
The problem is that ghosts are made of the stuff of memories and are no great respecters of boundaries, walls, and gates, or even the rules that govern the land of the living. In many cases, they inhabit our reality and influence our decision making far more than most living beings. And, I guess, in most cases, this is well and good too.
Death is a part of life. And the best way that we can deal with its frightful visage is to honor the ghostlike memories of those who traveled before us and along side of us and to use them to guide us forward.
And maybe wave at them as you drive by, or give them a shout out with the window down,..... tip your hat. Something.
From The Southside of Paradise – Chapter 24 – Almost Crazy
He came over by me, turned over a white bucket and sat down on it. "Well just who the fuck sits out in the dark by hisself on a Friday night?"
"You ain't even got no hook on here, fool! You are fucking crazy!"
I opened up my beer, took a swig and answered, "It might be crazy if I was trying to catch a fish, otherwise not so much."
He stared at me open mouth then stared at the pole then back at me, "Catching a fish is the whole point of fishing, Danny."
"Maybe, maybe not. Maybe I was trying to catch something else completely."
"Sumpin else? Like what?"
I didn't hesitate, "Like a clue, Hopalong. Maybe I just needed a clue."
Now he looked at me, then the pole, then the water. "And it's out there in the river somewhere?"
I felt a wave of energy rush over me from the head down. Goddamn, this damn fool was getting deep, and it made some sense too, hell, it made a lot of fucking sense. "Damn it, Dean. That shit was good. For a minute, you sounded just like that dude we were talking about a while back."
He didn't know if I was pulling his leg, or not, so he asked hesitantly, "Who dat?"
"Cyrano. The dude in the play we were discussing back when this shit started happening."
"That long nosed dude?"
"Yeah. I know his nose wasn't near fucked up as yours, but that shit you said was pretty deep."
He didn't know what to do at first. He still didn't know whether I was kidding or not. Finally, he grinned and reached over and gave me a high five. "Damn right that shit was deep. Come from the heart too." He settled back onto his bucket. A little while later, he slurred," Remember that shit for me, Danny, and remind me what I said when I sober up."
He looked over at me and grinned again, and I fucking lost it. I laughed so hard, I completely forgot about the reason I was out there fishing with no hook.
From My Friend Cooper
If I ever make it heaven, I'm going to look him up. I'll walk up to where he's sitting and tell him something like, "Coop, you remember that time I saw your dog licking my dog's butt?"
He'll look at me, shake his head, grin with those big sad eyes, and look over his shoulder to make sure St. Peter ain't listening and reply, "Fuck you, Dougie."
From - Staring Down Monsters
You can bet your ass that these fears will keep coming up in your life with more and more riding upon each successive episode, until, sooner or later, you will be forced into a situation where all of the walls are made of mirrors and the only door is locked from the outside. By this time, a simple display of courage and/or common sense will no longer satisfy the god of chaos, and payment must instead be made in muscle tissue, thickened blood, shattered bone, broken hearts, bounced checks, and a flood of tears.
From The Southside of Paradise – Chapter 23 – The Beckoning Stars
I almost made it through the night, but when I knew that nothing I could say was ever going to change her mind, a single tear showed up on my right cheek. I had cried without meaning to. It was the worse fucking mistake I could have ever had made. I don't care what other people say; girls don't want to see their guys cry. They might pretend to like the James Dean type, but deep down they really want a young John Wayne, the mythic hero, guys who aren't afraid to make the hard decisions and brave the future no matter what the cost.
I trudged down to the next intersection. It was the corner of Eustace and Lemon. It was the smallest most unassuming intersection in the whole town. The huge full moon hung brightly over the single forlorn lamppost that stood on the left side of the intersection. It felt like I was dragging concrete boots along. I stopped for a second time in the middle of an intersection, and I looked up hopefully at the moon. I didn't want to walk anymore and would have been perfectly happy just to stand there gawking at the big old moon forever.
From The Hard Remember – Mama Loved Clark Gable
I didn't even know there was such a thing as the color purple. I saw it in nature, but no one had ever explained it to me. I noticed that she had no color purple either, and Mama patiently informed me how she mixed colors together to make it. While she was talking, she was sitting on the ground smiling, and her smile was so lovely that I still tear up when I think on it. It is that smile that I remember most whenever I think about her.
From All the Ghosts of Christmas
It is an absolute fucking miracle that we are alive and occupying this place and time, and a wonder of wonders that we have eyes and ears with which to explore all the mysteries of universe. We can not only see and hear its glories, but we can break off small chunks of it to taste and smell. We are separated from infinity by the thinnest layer of an epidermis that not only distinguishes us from the rest of the universe but also allows us to feel a wide range and multitude of sensations, some pleasurable and others not so much.
From The Not So Very Great Big Deal
I guess, what was even worse, if there was something worse than losing your vision, was that I had lost my sense of perspective too. Well, maybe not lost; I still had a perspective, but it wasn't the same one I took over there. That one was still sitting around Vietnam somewheres probably smoking hash and drinking hot Pabst Blue Ribbon with all the other perspectives that got left behind.
From Love in the Time of Zombies
In other words, I went crazy for a while. I wrote down shit in a fever with words just pouring out of my head like rainwater out of the mouth of a sculpted Greek monster. The situation wasn't helped much by the onset of tinnitus and the lack of sleep caused by it. I did manage to write my way past that initial bout of madness, helped no doubt, by finally finding a sleeping pill that let me dream through the night.
All I know is that I got a hole the size of Alaska in my heart and that the person who filled it best is dead. That and the fact I am such a hard person to understand that even I, who knows me better than anyone else, can't seem to do it all that well.
From Listening to Miles While Talking to God
I want to be quiet and know that God is God. I want it so much, but I have trouble doing it. Sometimes, the best I can do is putting on Freddie the Freeloader and pretending that we both are listening to Miles Davis blow his horn.
God: "Gabriel's better."
Me: (cocking one eye) "Oh Please!"
From This Magic Moment
I was driving along 99 Highway and listening intently, and the memory Steve was painting moved me greatly; it was like a tiny bit of magic had attached itself to some very brutal reality. It was like a fantasy from a Fellini movie, and it made me wonder just how many such magical moments we encounter in our lives and why we are so hell bent to ignore them. Is it because we have our noses so far up the fat ass of reality that we no longer possess a sense of magic?
From Rainbow Over C-Town
It seems to me like everybody's been waiting for Jesus to come back, even the ones who deny that he's real, and we all keep glancing over our shoulders nervously expecting him to suddenly appear in the eastern sky with his arms outstretched looking warm and inviting, but, at the same time a little bit angry. You know the kind of the look our moms used to give us when we came home six hours past our curfew.
From On Staring Into the Void
I was only around ten or eleven years old when my Sunday School teacher told our class that we would all burn in hell unless we had accepted Christ and repented of our sins. I had a bit of a problem wrapping my head around the concept that I was going to be barbequed in perpetuity for a preadolescent lust for my elementary teacher and stealing penny candy.