(self)

the effect the world has on me thickens my skin. i become less vulnerable while trying hard not to be completely insensitive. i wanna be able to feel cuz you gotta feel, to feel alive. like anyone i wanna feel safe. a thick skin can protect. like trusted family and friends. deadbolted doors.

there is something juicy at the core of you. something sacred and true that the world cannot corrupt. you can share this with them. they can see it in your eyes. they may get under your skin. you can learn to protect your sacred self. and offer it with those who are deserving.

kindness and compassion make for the best tasting fruit. the ability to see behind personalities is a great gift few have. those who have or develop this capacity are often smiling or less fearful walking the world. for they realize that even the hardest among us have a sweetness deep inside.

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mack truck

i was making my way down a particularly dicey part of highway number 5. in a hatchback, black. in a single lane slowpoke being invaded on either side. half the heads i saw were looking back at me from the road. not a good sign in a sea of choppy brake lights. my lane was more compressed than the sacramento real estate rental market and the hottest around. you coulda sold space and got rich in a sec, without thinking. the overpasses left heavy eyeliner inside the shadow of downtown, highlighted by the glass of a thousand former accidents. the exit for Q street was coming up like the question i was asking myself: should i get off this bad trip before i make history? and for all the wrong reasons. sometimes a single choice can save your life. it would take me way off my timing, was the con. i kept my course. i could reach out and touch the rushed commuters, encased in their steel murder machines. i jedi mind tricked myself into a crosswalk mentality, like those white lines meant anything to protect us. i turned up my radio and let down the windows. i threw fear into the wind as i shifted into third. kept my eyes on the tail of a wandering june bug with dual exhaust. all seemed well. then the mack truck came screeching down my left flank and almost pinioned a subaru dead stopped by the weavers, all running interference. i saw the giant wheels roll by and they were smoking. taller than my car! melting rubber for a living! suddenly my world could fit inside a hot wheel. i could read the writing. on the sidewall.

pulse @39

The medical tech excused herself to speak with her supervisor. She hid her worry rather well. I was in a gown after an EKG. I had a paperback in hand, from the donated library in the waiting room. This happened almost every time. I was once living at high speeds. Sleepless nights. Racing around to no end. Years ago I exited my madness. Since then life has been something to cherish in slow motion. Few sudden surprises. When I saw her, she looked relieved. I asked her the number. Today my pulse chimes in @ 39.

oath of allegiance ina bath of silence

maybe i read too much shakespeare in high school. maybe i drank too much coke. i kept to myself with a few close friends. i made a pilgrimage to faulkner. i kept writing and writing though it seemed pointless at times, as there was no internet to share. i read my work in bars and cafes, in chicago and tampa in the late nineties, behind a highball whisky. maybe i smoked alotta pot. i carried a leatherbound journal wherever i went. now i have a cell phone and press words in there. life is the same, although it changes. i may be getting older but i’m still young. maybe i watched too much tv. i will always love to ride trains, even subways. i take a bath of silence every morning. and an oath of allegiance to my creative process. i am very well, the way i live. but i went about things so poorly for so long, it still hurts. i blame myself for the blunders i made. i am also unwell. mostly for having hurt you. i hurt myself badly, too.

man behind umbrella

You can try and hide behind the umbrella. you can hide behind your interpretation of the law. you can hide inside your home behind your money and your discourse. you can call for law enforcement. do not be surprised when they pull you out from cozy privilege and imprison you. restricting your arms at the wrists. rolling your fingertips in ink. will you smile for the camera? will you represent your vitriol? will you miss your mocha cappuccino reserve and high castle office? the fawning gucci assistants shredding papers, who you undress with your eyes, leaning back in your chair while stroking your gold-weighted pen?

diary

journal #

i was so very sick when i awakened. i was addicted. my unemployment had run out. i was living off of food stamps and the kindness of strangers. i was lonely, hallucinating, scared. i was searching every day for my cat who ran away. our home was a tiny trailer on a truck bed in Richmond, near the train tracks led to Oakland and the San Francisco Bay. i rode my bicycle slowly, calling out for little Drama on the surrounding streets. the only responsibility i had anymore was my cat and myself. and he was the only one who loved me anymore.

brothers drama and shy

(re)telling the story

i can clearly recall my awakening. it was over five years back and i was close to street homeless. i remember the date, 12.12.12 and how some had attached to it an apocalyptic forecast. i was living in my friend’s truck and very alone. i was full of powerful feelings and fears. i was dreaming again of my family and better days long behind me. i was getting high around the clock, for i was addicted to methamphetamine and could not escape. i used it alongside the psych meds i had been described for anxiety and depression. it had become my medication. the allostasis in my mind was severe. i heard voices through walls. my depressive moments lasted long and deep. i was unkempt but i had access to laundry, electricity, food, and water. i had witnessed crimes on the streets and been assaulted and manipulated more times than i could count. i knew a dangerous dead end romance like i knew my middle name. much of my energy was lost to hypervigilance and traumatic recall. i feared people and economic insecurity. i listened to am radio talk shows like they were my only friends…