Chasing Dreams?

Time has a habit of getting away from us. I even chased it this last week, driving west across America, going back in time, hoping somehow to catch up to that moment I’d lost… 

But I couldn’t drive fast enough. As fast as I went, the sun still rose in the east, and set in the west, and every evening I’d find myself blinded, the low slanting rays piercing in beneath the sun visor, dazzling me as I passed through the deserts of the southwest. And then the next morning there that great orb would be, looking down over my shoulder, casting my shadow long in front of me, a shadow, reaching back in time before me, with me spending all morning trying to catch up. Tag! You’re it! I’d shout at noon, and keep running, with my shadow now in hot pursuit, but every day lagging as night drew in. 

We think we know, but we don’t. We think after all this time being asked the same question, that we finally have the answer for it. Why? 42. Doesn’t work. So we go back to the drawing board. Running here there and everywhere, convinced that the solution is right under our noses. Or maybe under that rock over there. Or behind that tree. An Easter egg hunt, and the prize will be better than any candy imaginable. Or will it? 

Nobody knows, and the silence stretches on. I had an idea once. Something to make it all worthwhile. To make it easy. And I watched the world around me fall into recognizable order. Freeze frame this moment, let’s stay here forever. 

And then I woke, with a smile on my face, and that dream, that dream that I had been chasing, faded like mist upon the wind. 

Between Fantasy and Reality

Where do we go from here? Sometimes everything seems so real. Like a heightened sense of reality. Like you’re connected to everything and everything revolves around you. I can touch and feel and taste everything. And then other times I disappear for a while. But I swear! I used to be part of that world! Then I went to sleep and woke up a stranger in a strange land. Am I less real now? Am I the one fading? Insubstantial. Incomprehensible? Or do we all come and go? The borders grow thin. We all slip between fantasy and reality. Who wants to be grounded anyway? I was grounded once. I was the most boring fucking person in existence. So I swan dived into the nearest rabbit hole and found myself on the other side of the world. This is not my life. Not anymore. And then at some point we all wake up. Come down from on high. Welcome back to reality. Rain check please. I’m gonna shut down. There’s nothing left for it. Check out. Leave my bags at the counter. Iced latte to go and if I don’t remember to come back, well it wasn’t worth it anyway. But where will you go? Where will you be? On a spaceship somewhere. Sailing over an empty sea.

Where We Once Were

Sleep until the sun goes down. Wishing my days away. Keep on wishing my days away. And she said to me to wait. Wait, and pretty soon everything will become clear. That’s how it always works. If we hold off long enough, suddenly everything comes right. That or it all goes hideously wrong. But at least it’s always one of the two. There’s some great impetus for doing nothing. Yeah… I’d really rather not though. Fine. Don’t. and then she looked at me, hand on the side of her face, you know that look. Head slightly cocked to one side, like she’s resting her head in her hand, fingers lightly tapping her temple. And she looked at me like that for a long moment.

‘You know, everything happens twice. But only once for a reason.’ Everything’s a repeat of what we heard yesterday, only this time it doesn’t make any sense. Or maybe it’s the other way around. Maybe nothing ever makes sense the first time. It’s why we’re all consistently lost. Yeah, I thought I knew where I was going. I thought the map I had would get me there. I guess it’s outdated. How quickly things are outdated. I swear there used to be a street here. And on the corner, right there, just after the house with the green mailbox. Didn’t you grow up just around the corner? And we’d go down your backgarden and play in the creek bed. Following it all the way up to the park. Looking for old frisbees lost in the undergrowth. And when the rain finally came at the end of summer, we’d drag the raft upstream along the trail, and float back down through the rapids. It seemed so dangerous and exciting then! Setting out for adventure in our little stream. I went back there not long ago. I could hop across it almost all the way up. What happened to our rapids? To that vast and powerful river? How do things change so much? At least it feels like they changed. But I could have sworn it was this way… and then memory fails and we go plummeting into some unknown depths. Ever been here before? Only yesterday. If you get lost I’m not coming to find you. I don’t know the way.

Twice More, and Then Some

There’s no stopping some people. Twice more she said, and then we can consider the truth. And if it rains first? Well then in the morning we can collect the raindrops. All the ones that linger anyway. Collect them all and bring them carefully back inside. Polish them off, one by one, and display them together, a vast canvas of raindrops. And we’ll title it ‘Last Night’s Rain,’ or something equally prosaic. Do you know what happens when you start imagining things like that? It’s quite possible they don’t become any more or less likely. Then again, it’s equally possible that they do. I always wager on it making a difference. Otherwise what’s the point of imagination? I don’t want it to just be an escape. Especially since I quite often don’t want to escape there. Surrealism is a dangerous place to go running off to. Boundaries grow thin on that side. Some things are less substantial, some more. And what kind of an idea is it to escape to somewhere and not be better off? Frying pan? Fire? Somebody explain the difference. I’ll take frying pan anyday. If I’m gonna be burned alive, I’d at least like to turn into a half decent omelette. None of this half-baked shit.

Tell Me a Story

Maybe it’s that story. You know. The one that never happened. Or maybe it’s a combination of several that never happened. That works too. The best stories that never happened. All rolled into one pretty little parcel. In a sort of ‘this is how it was supposed to happen’ kind of way. Would that I knew how it was supposed to happen.

So we’ll spin it. Over coffee. At a show. The little things. The Take Away Concerts of life. Moments that, no, not moments, vignettes that create a complete picture. ‘This is how it was.’ All of it is a painting. Why should that be any different? Only a slightly less abstracted painting. Impressionist, rather than outright abstract. There’s a good way to look at it. The story is Impressionist, the modern vignettes are Dali-esque, and what else? Who knows? All of it abstracted somehow. I don’t have the comparison. Think someone with bright colours, an eye for detail, but turning the picture into what they want it to be, not necessarily what it was. An artist’s eye.

And here, our lives! Presented in glorious Technicolor. Just the way we would have wanted to see them.

The Only Non-Superfluous Speech

Daily Prompt: Seven Wonders

How to reduce language to seven words? Focus on the important ones. Coffee, espresso, latte, cappuccino, macchiato, americano, mocha.

See, with language, the key is understanding and the nuance of meaning. The ability to differentiate subtle variations in desires. A vehicle for expression.

Strip language back to those seven words, and everything else fades away. All concerns, all debates, all conflict. The only drama of the day is that demanding decision of which word to use in the morning. Which word to fully capture one’s intentions and encourage the embracing of a new day. All thought could be bent towards the resolution of that simple daily conundrum. A singular focus, embraced by all speakers of this sept-mot language.

And besides. It’s always been the only way humanity has ever understood one another. Over a cup of coffee.

Her Porcelain Skin

Call it fleeting. Call it a moment that, in another life maybe, led to something.

You know, I thought of you once. It was a moment pretty much like this one. Quiet. During that mid-afternoon lull. When the world pauses for a few minutes and thinks about resetting. Take a break. We’ll come back to that.

And then she spoke the words, and everything changed. Wanna know how it happened? It was a whisper, that carried such a weight. And it’s such a weight to carry. Whispers always carry weight. That’s how we say the things worth saying. The things that we’re scared to say out loud. You can only speak reality in a whisper. It’s how we trick ourselves and get past the filters. I’m not really saying this out loud, I’m just thinking it. Do you believe me now? How about now? Silence. It’s the best answer.

Looking for patterns in the chaos. Trying to figure out where we go from here. Like playing an endless game of hide and seek. Tell me what you see, and every time it changes. Close your eyes, count to fifty, and everyone around you disappears. Thanks for the loyalty guys, but it’s all part of the game. They’ll be back. But the moment they return you lose. Somebody wins, somebody loses. Try and get out of that clause in life!

She told me she had a scar, a fleck on her porcelain skin.