Tuesday, December 08, 2009


Thomas Stone descends into his alcoholism. He sees the approaching psychosis as inevitable. Additionally, he views the delusional chaos as a condition paralleling the confusion generated by his education—a swirl of ideas with no anchor.

One morning, at a bar, enjoying a Guinness and Jameson after a long night’s work, he loses himself into an eddy of color staining the side of his pint glass—the result of holding the empty, foam-soaked glass in the shadow of a nearby blinking neon vodka sign.

He sees his entire, mundane life symbolized by this glass. Reluctantly, Stone embraces his destiny.

Days later, feeling acutely morose, he struggles to get ready for work. He wants to quit. He dreams of teaching literature—of penning a lauded, ground-breaking novel. He wishes he was a visionary, but he’s not—he’s a night stockman at a grocery store.

Mindlessly, he listens to the latest news on Iraq pour out of his television. Click. Click. He extends and retracts the blade of his box cutter. His dreams of another life increase in grandiosity. Each dream falls to reality. He has nothing to look forward to except eight hours of stacking cans.

Thomas imagines a day alone off the coast of Connecticut. He’s alone on the tides. The sail is down. The boat drifts aimlessly. An overcast day, gray extends across the horizon. Infinite dullness. A voice calls to Thomas and asks him to approach.

Thomas swigs from the chilled bottle of vodka. He tries to raise the sail, but the ropes are tangled into a hopeless knot. The voice calls again.

He cuts the ropes and tries to fasten a new tie, but it doesn’t work. The voice calls a final time.

Thomas stares into the horizon and then the short, choppy waves, and, finally, plunges into the ocean.

Oddly, despite the lack of sunlight, the water feels temperate. He begins to swim towards the horizon line—his arms cutting through the warm water. He fills with joy. For the first time in his life he thinks that God might actually exist.

Then he awakes from his daydream. He’s on his couch—warm blood flowing down his arms and soaking his shirt and the couch. The box cutter remains wedged in his right forearm. Blood squirts. He fades. He dies.

Monday, December 07, 2009

I Am the Totem Pole

Returning home from my orientation, the lunacy kicked in. I felt the divine short-circuiting my wiring. I knew it was time. I was about to channel that from beyond in my best Edgar Cayce, Zen, Beat madness, jazz-riffing glory. I burst through the door and stripped away the façade of khaki, dress-shirt, necktie slavery. The energy welled up and sent shivers through every pore, hair, and neuron. “Holy shit,” I exclaimed. This feeling—so pure and primal—that I can no longer view my mania as a disorder. No, this is a gift. This is Pentecostalist tongues without the inbreeding; this is the spark of God—whatever he, she, or it may be; this is why we are here. We are the reference point—the antenna through which that lonely, glory-hungry ineffable beast seeks to express itself. We are the living medium.

Such a revelation necessarily took control of me. Standing in my boxers and nothing else, I refastened my tie into an ornamental headdress. Its power besieged me. The Whitman yawp roared from my life. I was no longer in control. It was steering the wheels of my flesh. Stumbling into the bathroom, my knees slid my body onto the floor and my hands fumbled through the boxes stored beneath the sink. I found my leftover Halloween makeup and adorned my face with the paint of warriors ancient—making sure to match the life of color to the tie around my head. Symmetry was everything. Aesthetic is key, literally. Paint my doorway to the beyond. I shall chalk a body on the pavement of this earth and find escape into another dimension. It beckons me.

Racing up the stairs, I tripped and fell. My lip bashed into the angular carpet—enough to split it open. Blood poured from the wound and I received the communion of self. Its salty life descended into its own throat. Call me ouroboros; call me serpentine; call me lizard king; call me cosmic argyle—I am seeping into the pattern. I am one with Vonnegut’s purple buzz. I am Aum. And like Gibran’s prophet noted—I am a lotus of countless petals, unfolding itself.

Screams not quite me emerge from my mouth. I know it’s time. This could finally be the wave that I’ve been waiting to surf. It’s time to put my words to paper or, at least, this disembodied computer monitor of a reality. At least the tap-tap-tapping of the keys keep me linked to the great regurgitation, or should I say emulation—are these really my thoughts? No, I almost forgot. I am the channel and the channeled. I am no more real than a court stenographer. My dharma is not to be; it is to record. I am the DJ spinning appropriations. I am not the artist, within. We are merely the vessels—the vases—the porters of the invisible, indivisible, immaterial who require our clay for the pottery of the gods. Is that the truth of my existence? Seriously? Am I ambrosia? Am I the finger-tips of an interdimensional marionette?

Yes? Then so fucking be it. I’ll dance around my fireplace like tribal man around the pit. You call me crazy? No, the real insanity is your control. It’s your patient workweek melodrama. It’s your Olive Garden, Old Navy, Strip Mall, assimilated nightmare. Even your churches are tract housing defilements. You cookie-cutter god-seekers. You cannot handle the mysterium tremendum et fascinans that is the Lord. You need grape juice and cookies amidst your soccer mom congregations of weak-minded, dollar-bill donating bullshit that you call worship. Come to me when the hallucinogenic chemicals of dissociating bliss have eaten through bone and snot like hydrochloric acid and left nothing but the spark of the eternal. This is why the angels are lost in perpetual contemplation of an infinite glory.

You see, you may see my necktie headdress and Monday afternoon war paint as symptomatic of a mental disorder, but you’re not getting it. This is what it means to be a human being. We, like all of life, are in touch with the divinity that is existence. However, we are the only creature on Earth incapable of accepting such a thing. We are not the advanced, civilized mark of hope; we are the weak, smelly shit of the biosphere. We are the cancer—not the salvation. Salvation is in immersion, submission, and hallucination. The illogical, maniacal, carnival-like trumpet of the mad—that’s the voice of reason. Ironic, yes, but that’s the nature of life and until you melt into that irony this means nothing. So scream with me! Yes, scream.

The primitive is the advanced. The Catch is the 22 and the Rye. The modern is the post and we precipitate that which anticipates, because to come means to go. Hence, I dance around the fireplace—a modern primate in my soul-paint of the gods and I dangle my necktie headdress in defiance of your convention. I am here to channel not tune in. I am the dialed and the dial, but never the dialer. Oh, sing me the song of the universal and burst my ears. Carve your wooden soap masks and shower with me in golden, mad defile. Come ye’ angelic lost, and join me in celebration. We shall write the book of books and contribute a verse. For this is Monday, December 7th, 2009 and the only time in all of eternity that this moment shall breathe—and in jubilation, lets remorse. It was time to write even though time pretzeled upon itself and lead me here—weaving a narrative of past and present tense that made little sense, but I write and wrote and you shall read and read and the möbius strip flows on—the great bow tie lives and that is why I wear this tie upon my head and this paint upon my face. I am the totem pole and I celebrate the ancients who first discovered the secret.

We evolve, devolve in reverse. We did not replace them. They left without cloth. They left in light. And now it’s our turn to countdown to zero, but are we really prepared to let go of one?

Hallelujah. Will you dance with me?


Bourbon glass, pencil resting beneath
the candle flicker while
love insane, improper, and
improbable sleeps above. My
couch holding a promise
that may yield stomach-knotting,
snot-dribbling sacrifice, but
why else do we ignite the
slender spinal thread of this
wax we call home? Tiny
flames comfort and release
fleshy prisons from the shelf. I
slide into you, and