Sunday, January 13, 2008

....and never brought to mind: a tear smudged induced fugue of joy reflecting the puddle of a year gone lapse

It is the morning pink eye-lidded yawn of 2008, the green g-mail chat bullet of the planet still galatcically tethered and cosmically buoyed around a winking bulb of the nearest day star socketed inside the inscrutable fabric of the universe itself. The genesis of a new slate of January snow melting in tandem following the platter of stale new years eve confetti and exclamatory countdowns en masse that would make even the stoic collective chins of NASA salute in anticipation over the toppling descent of integers pregnant with the pocked sound of champagne hiccupping free from its emerald esophagus followed by a ricochet of corks followed by dry kisses and embraces and a round of old acquaintances being forgotten followed by the (interior writhing) realization of age and the encroachment of death, the cathartic gut-dripping insight that the allotted dash of seconds granted to us as a gift to thrive and create and love and give all on the fallow scalp of this planet--this viable arboretum of intelligence and life--and that you are here optically indulging in the phonetics of this experiment of pulse and breath--that you are here, wading knee-high through this experience of existence, this time, this place, the joy, the sorrow---somehow you are (for however tersely) a part of this global collective waltz--that you are part of this tear drop trickling down the cheekbones of the planet called humanity and that your voice, your persona, your song, indeed, carries with it the most fragrant chorus sprinkled with significance and wonder.

A ritual that my family has devoutly enacted since I was about the size of an errant good year tire was that, on New Years eve, after church we would host a new years eve gala where my aunts and uncles and cousins and friends would congregate around the oak mahogany of our childhood living room; week old needles on our Christmas tree still clad in a stuttering holiday phosphorescent glow. My family would configure into a circle of elbows and limbs, not unlike those found in creative writing classes in the upper echelons of liberal education while my mother would distribute candles to each inhabitant circled in the island of bodies. One by one, each member would light his or her respective candle and talk about how God had blessed them in the last year and what their hopes and individual ambitions were for the following year. With the house still garnished in a bright holiday hue festooned with cranberry ribbons, the pine heavy scent of emerald orchards nasally associated with the last week of the year glazed with icicles, tufts of froth, darkness sputtering across the horizontal windshield of the west, caking the planet with a dazed mid-afternoon tint--in our house on new years eve there were candles, each individual very simply espousing their gratitude for yet another year of life on this planet holding the white stem of the candle chin-high as if it were some sort of microphone. After each narrative the person would swivel clock-right alighting the wick of the person next to them until the room was aglow in a halo of candle light and spilled stories--the ritual often ending with a prayer of peace, a hymn for tomorrow, a wished-for song for the world to come.

So, with lighter and candle stalk in paw, allow me to illuminate the unsinged tassel of the wick and spill out the overturned jigsaw narrative of my heart reminiscing over just what the fuck happened these last twelve months:

It was the year in which my rattled third shift eyesight would optically snap out a poloroid of my Uncle Larry escorting my youngest sister Jenn down the slim carpeted arteries of the aisle. The year in which the integer of the trinity now heralds the numerical parking meter of my existence. The year in which I stenciled the number of pages composed everyday with a different colored marker into the white Gregorian decimal cube of the calendar above my desk at work.

The year I tell everyone that my heart is occluded in metaphorical tupperware as if awaiting a transplant from the broken cogs inside my chest to the inky footprints of a page seeded in pasture of emotional exposition such is the nature of my craft.

A year when I added nearly four hundred single space pages to a novel that is simply long enough.

The year of partying every Friday night with my dear friend Scarlet. Being snowbound the weekend of Valentines day and posting a thirty foot self-engendered mural entitled "INVOCATION TO THE MUSE" on the east side of my apartment wall. The mural consisting of app. sixty playboy centerfolds, flitted together like semi-glossy pornographic Lego's. Over the discourse of a snow-occluding weekend I would scribe the name of a different ex-girlfriend or transient lovers across the sheen of the paper. Watching the name of the woman I once proposed to, the proverbial one who got away; the high school sweetheart who now has a mortgage and an SUV and three progeny; the woman who broke my heart before I found myself nearly dead in an automobile accident the next day; the ravishing song of my spiritual companion, the pulse and color and fragrant hieroglyphs of her name, now collated in a glossy fresco--a thirty foot quilt bannered on the far side of my wall during the week of Valentines day.

By the end of the week long project I was lounging in my apartment, smoking an ONYX cigar when I witnessed my mural topple like maladroit stage curtains falling down at the end of a highschool thespian production of YOU CAN'T TAKE IT WITH YOU.

It was the year of watching Devin Hester sprint and dance into the endzone in the opening return drive of a sodden Miami superbowl, calling up my friend minutes later and bating him to perform his signature disgustingly divine heterosexual male oriented Ric Flair WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

The year of hearing the radiant verbal chimes of Greta Enzer--a Unitarian, a healer, writer, actress, teacher of theatre and beauty to LA's inner-city wayward teenage age souls; a fellow wayfarer who (fuck) 14 years earlier I sat across from at a dinner-dance in Stratford-upon-Avon, the town of Shakespeare and listened acutely as she told me about her sister, who later, I would learn, would die in a car accident--the chorus of souls spilling out their every story in streams of wished for slants of winter sun.

Greta showing me her brilliant script about a woman who fucks her boyfriend while she is one her period before slathering the blood of her own body on her lovers face in post-coital feminist delight.

The year of Harold and Maud.

The year of 11 percent IPA's. Samuel Adams Brewmasters collection, Dogfishhead, JW Dundee craftpack, Hobgoblin, Deleirum, North West Microbrews, extreme beers catered from a Scottish Dean of alcohol at Rhodells, bitter, hoppy, stouty, eternal, lathering the box seats of my palette in a liquid coat of joy.

It was the year of WHEELS OF LIGHT and VIEW FROM THE CENTER OF THE UNIVERSE and Juice diets. Kabbalah. Hard core meditation with emphasis on the frontal lobe. Dream symbiosis. Deepak Chopera. Yoga. Getting off from work at three in the morning and running my fucking ass off across the arteries of the west bluff. The psychology of Carl Jung. The year of dalliances in shamanism and devotions in quantum physics--watching the metaphysical realization manifest itself in the appellation of her name perching like a half-open window sill or whimsical wardrobe in front of me, every stitch of her handwriting splashing into the shore of my poetic desire, her name, little waves, foaming and cresting across the sand barge deep within the swells of my soul.

The year of BORAT and RAMTHA and wondering what it would be like if they were both stalled downriver in a canoe.

It was the year I was humbly asked to be a visiting writer at the University I still owe thirty-thousand dollars to. The University I graduated Cum Laude from and have never opened up the manila envelope in which my diploma arrived. The university I know work third shift for--the university that (unbeknownst to them, but love the distorted irony) called up the house five hours after my fathers death and innocuously inquired for a Financial donation to augment their sordid trust fund.

A failed campaign.

My cousin Larry, the rock star, the brilliant beer-addled fellow black sheep of the wayward Bozec bloodline. Larry who was living out of his SUV and battling substance abuse. Larry who ran off over 2000 flyers to in early April protesting the (now intact) Illinois smoking ban: THIS IS NOT AFGHANISTAN:SAY NO TO THE SMOKING BAN!!!

Waking up in an aluminum nest of beer cans and cigarette butts in the peach-lining light of an early spring, sitting on my back porch with his guitar singing songs from ten years ago, breaking into a chorus of Jonny Cash tunes:

"Well I woke up Sunday morning with no place
to hold my head that didn't hurt
...And the beer I had for breakfast wasn't bad
So I had one more for dessert"

The year I was supposed to see Michelle again, at a wine tasting in Des Moines, but we failed to somehow find each other in the field of SUV's and license plates.

The year of chronicling dreams. The dream where I endured in the guest room of my mothers abode where I am watching my father die and asking Abdul'baha to save him, to which he stoically refused. The dream where I am attacked by a dog-like creature
in a county house by my girlfriends very Harry Potter Mrs. Weasleyesque matriarch--the country house I later was invited to move into with my brother Hale six months later.

The year in which I found myself wading inside the torso of a woman I blogged about two years earlier, a woman who is a breast cancer survivor, making love in the under a pocketed sprinkle of July stars, the pilsner moon and slashes of heat lighting accompanying us as if in applause.

There's no sort of sex like sex with a woman who inspires you and who has grappled death by the labels and told him to fuck off for a few more decades.

And trust me, nothing is fucking sexier than a woman who has trounced her fears and now cannot stop smiling and laughing at everything around her.

The same woman who pretended she didn't know me the night of her sisters bachelorette party. The woman who now wants nothing to do with me at all.

The out of body mediation where I find myself in reverence in a throne room telling an escort of God that I cannot bow before him alone if the person I feel one with at all times is not saddled next to me, bowing, worshiping, smiling in spiritual deference as well.

The year where my cool sister and Brother-in-law hosted a thirtieth birthday party and almost every relative showed up with a different microbrew or imported six pack in paw. My Uncle Larry giving me two glass steins and a 12 pack of sumptuous SPATEN, which I jested to his chagrin that he probably purchased at Aldis.

The dream where I go into the earth and find my father alive and crying and tears and where we embrace--the gruff scent of his chin and cheekbones pressing against the right side of my tear saturated face and simply hold him.

The year of opening day at Comiskey, casting incantations of peremnial impotency all season long as the White Sox bullpen continue to act like a Bengali whore on an american military base and "blow another one." Watching Peoria-blood and all American class act Jim Thome belt his 500th homer in indelible fashion before circling the slants of the south side diamond, fist clutched, arm alighted, circling in spumes of cheer.

My dearest Esme--the eyelashes that launched more poems than Helen did ships to Troy over a two week period in the early haze of summer, the lavender dusk of a June evening over the eye-liner of the west replete with (seasonal) seventeen year cicadas chirping out own anthropodal oratorios in the background. Esmeralda who met me at the bus station in Joliet with her hair pinned back and a kick ass green dress that slid over her cinnamon skin-limbs of her petite poetic frame like quarter notes skimming across a the lithe rungs of classical sheet music. The rich chestnut tint of her eyes blinking in unflinching curiosity, as if trying to sop up every quark of her experience on this vessel deemed earth one astonishing blink at a time.

Esme who knew more about me than I did her when she arrived suitcase clasped in the slender tips of her fingers on the steps of my apartment early last June, her last night in P-town, en route to demolish the social hierarchal configuration of the planet in South Africa. Esmeralda who told me she has a surprise for me, mandating that I idle in the marijuana-incensed hallways of Motel six while she took a minute to "get ready," and as I waited before I entered the hotel room with thirty candles and the B'52's blaring out of a laptop--the spilled hiccup of her smile wishing me a happy birthday. Still I remember sitting in the bathtub with our clothes on (our Garden State moment), resting with her head in the center of my chest, the arteries of my heart catching dreams as they nocturnally dripped from her forehead like metaphysical ambrosia.

The year I nearly (remorsefully riddled now in retrospect) gave a copy of IRON JOHN to a bum at a bus station who was drinking water out of a dirty 2 litre bottle of Mellow Yellow, clad in an old tattered military coat, living all hours at the greyhound depot, hoping that he would look up into the gaseous wing of the bus as it hushes open to espy the limbs of a woman who mysteriously echoed into the night two years prior. Every night, he shows up at the Bus Station, waiitng for her to perhaps return.

The year of multifarious can't-enough-optical-fucking-viewings of WHAT THE BLEEP:DOWN THE RABBIT HOLE. Two copies arriving as if from disparate quantum realms on my door matt (even though I only ordered one)--the author intuiting these dual metaphysical tablets as gifts, giving them to the two wayfarer he feels most would most benefit from their insight and glow.

The year when my best friend from first grade was found murdered in his SUV, a bullet
planted in his abdomen, his eyes stalled in unblinking trance.

The year of God bless the eternal soul Danny Dalquist!!! Watching the casket containing his earthly coat sail through the mouth of St. Marks cathedral, a wooden vessel levitating on the bony pillars of fellow pallbearers. The crimson clad shirts of the soccer team lined up in a plank of lower-chinned bodies as if playing zone defense against the inevitability of an ill-timed death--the sorrow of pain of the loss of a fellow brother. The six-figured university president doing her best ersatz Jackie O. imitation. The sight of my brother Drew wreathing the thick athletic slant of his arm around a teammates neck in a dire time of sober need and loss.

The year where a former student of mine was shot and killed, probably because of his sexual orientation.

The year where I was more or less drunk all the fucking time. A weekend past naught
where I failed to ferry a 12-pack cube of liquid scepters on the blades of my shoulders (sometimes two or three), as if the alcoholic Pharaoh of my psyche were instructing me to erect a great pyramid of hedonism while my life organs whittled and hardened into sand.

"If eternity is understood by endless temporal duration

The year of youtube: staying after work and watching lectures by Joseph campbell and Richard Feynman. Laughing my ass off to vintage all in the family. Dancing around my cubicle to the popped-syncopation of late-80 bowed out power ballads.

"But by timelessness."

The year where Doctor Wynn said that the results from my MRI came make negative and that I was a healthy young man and if there was something I was hanging on to from my past that was coercing me to spend all day worshiping Bacchus by pouring insidious amounts alcoholic libations through the hatch of my lips then I should really think seriously about seeking a psychological crutch.

The year of my brothers.

The brothers who always got my back. Year in year out, what a blessing to have healthy male creative coevals, semi-hedonists and fellow virile sports saturated lovers of life. Helping my brother John move to a posh Naperville apartment one late spring afternoon and endless male-oriented discourse over the wayward pursuit of sports in the city of Chicago. Throwing back amber gauntlets of PBR with Nick the writer, brother in the pursuit of all things literary and truthful in the swelter of early august. The year of dapper David Thompson, hearing his insight and pursuit of the aesthetic, the bacchanalian, the beautiful, the culinary, the eternal.

The year of Dave Hale always having my back. Picking me up when the skinned-knee of my spirits are low.

The year of fuck the chicago cubs going to the playoffs!!!

Through the tides of light combing into the shoreline of the planet in waves--the sight of a heavy sun in winter stranded in a sea of moonlit serenity.

All this and I still don't know what a fucking kiln looks like, Sarah.

"If you wanna sing out, sing...."

Though the highlight of December was watching your eyes close as I kissed
the light snow of your winter cheek and then wished you a Merry Christmas.

"then he who lives in the moment.."

"there's a million places to go just know who you..."

"Lives eternally."

This is my torch from the eclipsed 12 months passed to you dear reader. I extend the pangs and perils, my sin and my savior, to your outstreched wick. My request for your new year is simply: Make the life you are currently leading the life you feel compelled as fuck to live. Give it all and ask for no return. Pour everything of yourself out in an effort to strecth the lips of a perfect stranger out in a meadow of smiles. Dance as if there is no tomorrow.

And if you find yourself holding her in your arms. Never fucking let go.

Happy new year, my faithful readers. Make your life joyful and unique. Cause there's a million ways to go.

You know that there are.

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