Monday, January 17, 2011

Biblionaut Versus "The Book"

If you don't play by "the" book, they'll beat you senseless with it. There was a time in my life when I was all over "the" book but I guess you could say I never read my own press, at least not if it was printed in "the" book. All I had to see was what life was like for those who weren't mentioned favorably or weren't in "the" book at all. I called these people friends. They were stuck in a black hole while I was a star soon to burn out. Yet my story remains in this book and stories require belief to sustain themselves as living things. So I ask where has all the belief that has sustained me through the years come from? A select few individuals have managed this and even fewer continue to believe. In the end, only my mother and father continue to testify to the superstar protagonist of an obscure story in a hypothetical tome.

As a self-professed biblionaut, I continue to venture into the ether on a daily basis and aspire to gather materials with which to build my own books. No longer am I holding out for elusive happiness or success. If I must ride my broken heart like a battleship to the day of my demise, so be it. Make no mistake, noise will be made and pages will be filled. Sooner or later, I will figure out how to sustain myself in this world but not without a fuss, never without a fuss.

The age in my eyes is really beginning to show through. Those who gaze upon my face may or may not sense that these eyes have seen much more than this world and have yet to actually read "the" book. I mean, I've skimmed it, read the Cliff Notes and seen the movie plenty of times. But really, who can read that thing? Maybe it is read to us in the womb. We are certainly aware of it as soon as the world it describes supplants the world we came from. For me, if I could actually look back to the world we came from, I imagine a great big pair of legs with green and white striped socks like Nanny from Muppet Babies. A part of me will always have my arms wrapped around one of them, refusing to be pulled into this replacement world.  The lines between life and survival will blur for as long as I draw breath. Somewhere there is a girl who just happens to need what I've got and when we collide, I will wrap my arms around her. I'm sorry, Nanny.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

People Are Dead

People are dead. A nine year old girl is dead. Not even 24 hours have passed and already, as I write this, the national conversation is locked all the way down to the Facebook posts. They're dead. The girl is dead. The judge is dead. At least three others are dead. A woman was shot in the head and is fighting for her life. Am I wrong to want the puppet show passed for politics to be postponed until at least, say, tomorrow? Why am I hearing the names and words already? Why am I hearing people blame a cable news network? Why am I hearing about Sarah Palin and Glen Beck?

People are dead. A nine year old girl is dead. Do you know that the early broadcasts of the event consisted of the appointed Bobblehead reading text from YouTube and Myspace? Any of us can do that. By now, the feeds are scrolling, the graphics are working, the faces are rotating. Facebook is already peppered with television. Those people, that girl, are no longer dead. Already they are being bandied about from press release to press prelease. They have been absorbed into the maelstrom of hot air that swarms out of control through the homes and minds of Americans. Making up your own mind, are you? You wish. If you're not already using the handbook imprinted on your mind, youre swinging at whatever the talking heads are lobbing your way.

Stop. Kick all voices out of your head save your own. Allow your mind to process a man pointing a firearm at a person's head point blank and firing. Go one step further and try to imagine that this person's actions has, in some way, a connection to us all, as people. Dwell on it as long as you need until you absorb it. Then, maybe you can step up to the conversation with a right mind. You will not be scrambling about frantically trying to piece together fragments from a late night talk show monologue. Death should be able to exclude someone from our inane ravings, at least for a little while, right? Why am I thinking of folks like the Westboro Baptist Church protesting funerals? They really don't get it and neither do you if you cannot resist jumping into the melee following murder with virtually the same fervor as when Jersey Shore gets a new cast member.