Heaven In The Darkness; Eternity & Hope

Maybe there is a heaven? Heaven might be the black nothing of vanished memories and endless night? Or what we make it? Anything else, no matter how charming, would certainly include these memories. These short films I live with here in this hell.

This grey would rise, following into that shining city, like pet pollution; a smog that refuses to lift, becoming more dense in that miserable afterlife, I could never end. Hell such as this would be more appropriate, in its eternal pit of serpent and flame.

Behind these eyes are the fires that portend to reflect my pain. We lost you five years and two months ago today. I think about us and try to imagine you helping to douse all that’s enflamed today. It could be little more than a fantasy, you discovering a way through the cracks to save me from myself? I might have lost you anyway? I understand that. But at least the world would be a better place with you remaining in it.

I miss the way people would look at you; stare at you even, so striking, like a beautiful crash, you’d attract angular vision. Even though I tried never to show it and you never said it out loud, you liked the innocent way I could get jealous. Little secrets we couldn’t always hide though we tried. I never really believed I was good enough for you, though you never provided me reason to doubt it.

Sometimes I imagine you’re going to read this and write accordingly. It’s the rock of grace revealing an inner truth. It’s that hope you inspire. It’s that impossible dream reflecting upon a lake in motion.

If you were with us still yet, perhaps, beyond my grip, I’d be discontent. Your soul was my apex of promise, your loss, the final crushing blow. Be well in the darkness, my love, where the past has no future, no present, no hope.

 

 

 

 

 

 

LIP-SERVICE: THE FARCE OF THANKING VETERANS

The intention was that I’d move here, the farthest away I could get, to write and discover just how fucked-up I’d become post-Army. In between my virtual travels, my organic life seemed to fall prey to one disaster, then another, causing me to reevaluate my journey, asking in earnest; “was it really the war, or was it just me?” And now, after all these wasted days and sleepless nights, a sharp conclusion struck me square in the face: I’m not alone. Veterans are not alone in suffering. Society en mass seems to have turned on itself? So many people angry and confused. So many good people understanding that so much is wrong, yet unsure or ambivalent to the actual perpetrators? Like fish in the sea who don’t even know that they are wet, we’re turning on each other. Picture the chicken coop full of birds. Just one of them turns up with a speck of blood on the feather and soon, the entire flock is in the midst of a bloody Armageddon to the death.

What I’m trying to say is this: In my struggles, far from home with nowhere else to turn, the systems in place meant to help, even as a veteran, in time, often resembled the chicken coop. The people employed to give a hand, so to speak, often seemed incapable of escaping their own anger. The projection and transference so readily apparent, at times naked, caused me to stumble further. For those in more precarious conditions, the ineptitude and carelessness was, is, and can be inescapable. What now hits me the hardest is the complete indifference of anyone in a position to modify these unprofessional flaws. Anyone taking a rational look from the outside in, beneath the metaphoric carpet, would easily recognize the rot. But here’s the irony: In truth, nobody [very few] gives a flying fuck about homeless veterans…or homeless anybody for that matter. I certainly don’t. I can’t even bring myself to care about me.

This is an obvious point, yet the election of Donald Trump, a truly revolting character and certain disaster as a president, is a reflection of this anger so many feel…and for good reason. The political elite and the institutions they direct, have for 30+ years, stomped on the social security and welfare of nearly everyone else. While they gorged themselves from Wall Street to war profiteering to a zero interest monetary policy, they completely dismissed the victims of that fattening. Turns out there is a limit to this sort of twisted economic principal, or as Bush I put it in a rare moment of truth, “voodoo economics.” The socializing of corporate and financial institutions losses and the free market capitalism of Main Street’s economic pain. That is: we can find the money to save the gambler’s on Wall Street, including massive bonuses and incredible pay packages with taxpayer money, while simultaneously cutting unemployment benefits, food stamps, etc, because, you know, the “deficit.” Turns out, even the ignorant “white working class” and all the other demeaning pejoratives for 99% of the country can understand when they’re being fed bullshit sandwiches.

My point is that this broad anger and frustration seems to be bleeding out and onto fellow 99%er’s. How else can you explain the rank treatment I personally witnessed military veteran’s enduring within programs funded to do the opposite? How else can one justify the lack of compassion for the most in need by those tasked to serve?

I don’t want to share my story, it’s embarrassing. You might think after reading, “you need to tell someone, file a complaint..etc?” I gave up on that. The truth is, it’s a homeless guys word against a group of employees at a private organization who have their own story. The world isn’t fair. They actually made me believe for a while that I was in the wrong. That’s how sick it is, the system. Imagine how those who are really troubled are abused?

Long story short: Far from home, family and friends, I lost my home and nearly everything else to a fire. I entered a local program funded through the VA for homeless vet’s. I worked at this program doing what they call “work therapy” 40 hours a week…no pay of course, I had no discipline reports, no problems, etc. Reluctantly, I began meeting with one of the counselors about my PTSD. The second session, he started holding my hand which I thought was strange and made me uncomfortable. I’m certain he understood this, yet the next week he moved from my hand to my thigh, at which point I got up and left without explanation. The following night at 1AM, the Veteran Case Manager had me come downstairs asking me about a firearm and had I been threatening someone. Of course not. In my things I had a toy pistol which I mentioned. The police were phoned without me knowing. I was escorted to get a few things and told to leave the property. It was -15f. When I was able to return, I was told my property was donated due to policy.

You might think this is a bullshit story? Sure, there are more details but I am not leaving anything out like I was drunk, acting crazy, unliked by any other client, nothing that I can point to regarding my behavior. This was a simple move to get rid of me after a sick advance by a sick employee working in an ultra sick organization. Period. And it worked.

That’s all I say for now. I have made peace with it the best I can.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Five-Thousand Miles to Truth

Are you looking up into the great space tonight, my dear? The enormity of the sky above seemed to synchronize our minds in the darkness, alone and together. Is it all just a dream or worse, an intermission before the final act? Whatever might be, or is, I find some comfort at least in the thought, that no matter how far away, we can still look upon that space as one.

Do you recall that day in December? A flight across the entire country just to tell you the truth? All I had to go on were the tiny fragments of our silly conversations. The only way I could find you was to assemble the clues you slipped into these fragile secrets. The big city seemed like it could have swallowed you whole?

Five thousand miles, four cabs rides and three coffee shops later; I saw you standing there. Like an angel fallen from the highest places, my courage caught in my throat. That quick glance you gave me, the pause that followed mid-sentence, the smile.

For a second I wondered, had this been a poor assessment? Would an apology be enough to overcome the distance that immaturity had swollen? The second look in my direction was all I ever wanted to know. From that day forward, till the day we all lost you, I promised to love you like I did that day on the outskirts of Boston, 15 years ago.

Is it the fresh snow or is it the collapse in temperature that follows the winters storm? Whatever it is in this nature all around tonight, you feel closer this evening than in some time. Do you still believe in me? I miss you, of course, but it’s more than that at this moment. It’s like you are smiling at the thought of it all and realizing, all over again, that true love lives on.

It wasn’t like me to just jump on a plane and off my comfortable shelf. Five thousand miles isn’t that far when you consider the distance in between honesty and the truth.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TINY LITTLE DREAMS OF YOU MY LOVE

It’s so cold here I’m numb, in this yellow sun splashed memory of us, once, alone, close, together. Do you still smile and giggle when the powdery fresh snow makes that sound as it crushes in between the rubber soles of your boots and the sidewalk? Do you still think of that night with glee, as we traced ancient patterns upon the pristine pond ice, with the steel edges of our modern era skates? Can you remember those words once spoken…”I don’t even seem to really know you anymore?” That impression from you, my exposed ego, so painful, so uncomfortably wise, it still echoes within the walls of my irredeemable mind. True moments, like those [these] are rare elements indeed.

There’s this dream that precedes the terror. You’re all alone, walking away from the Central Avenue telephone, wind in your hair, my shadow falling upon your gaze. I’m barely even there, no hope to spare, but you; you’re a part of everywhere. It’s a tiny little dream, this clip that never makes noise. I listen so hard for the human sounds, until it returns to dark extensions of moving. This film stars the ghosts and it escapes so quickly, like a rainbow on the horizon, or an unrequited sigh. It’s the one thing left that I can still call my own. I believe in you still. Does that make me a fool?

If there’s time, I’d love to share my thoughts on infinity. Picture us napping on that couch from the world war. You’re sleeping so soundly as I travel the virgin trails of that temporal mind. It’s a special trust to rest like this. I value your surrender, in the deepest sleep, yet still so close. You’d wake and ask, “what time is it,” as if you’re surprised I’m still here? It’s quantum entanglement, our atoms became one upon this galaxy, together forever, the trillion, trillion, trillion connections in all dimensions. The matter that binds our dreams no matter. You’d say something like; “God you are so dumb.” It is haunting how simple the best of our lives truly are. No drugs, no liquor, the chemical intercourse is organic, and brilliant. I yearn for that pleasure so high up it floats. Not true love, but true nature.

“Don’t forget to live,” you say, the last time we walked along the path beneath the birch and birds singing their songs. What did you mean? Was it something so obvious that it’s hidden from my view? If our souls are of the same matter, does writing, or crying, or laughing and dancing even matter at all? You gave me everything, and still? It’s more than nothing at all.

There is an epic full moon coming they say, only 9 days away. It will shine 30 percent brighter than moons for a hundred years to follow. Look up my dear, on that satellite that glows so bright on that windy night. It’s the closest we can get to together, watching the orbit in suspended perfection, all four eyes consuming its arc, and its inevitable fall. They say it shatters into a billion pieces called stars, but I swear it’s all infinite, we’re little more than each other’s consequence, less one another’s faults.

As I work at this novel, somehow your spirit underscores the pain? Picturing and considering the horrendous image of combat and the hidden scars of war..so cliche, I know, I wanted to share my pain, shake the pain, mark the loss, cull my insight into the meaning of these merciless, forever wars that do shatter families, and tribes, and children and honor, and my self-respect, therapeutically analyzing the soul, begging for relief from the guilt and shame. Instead, I wander around the imagination, justifying our separation, which occurred beneath this thundering cloud of harried, inexcusable guilt, questioning my full sanity and pretending to not really care about you today.

It’s all connected, I suppose. First love, first war. Last exit, final atonement. You asked me not to go, yet I did. You begged me to come home and I lost my way. It’s all part of the cosmic shift; no past, no future, just right now. Was any of it ever real for you as it was for me love? If you could wake-up again on that couch, safe, secure, cherished, would you want to return? Me? I’m still there, in a way, like I’m still on that dusty street half a world away. The snapping stench of a murderous city pounding my fists, trying to break this terror, this mirror, escape this other dream.

It’s that place that will forever delineate the truth of that soft afternoon watching you sleep. I try not to go there too often. There are only so many tears I can shed at once.

I miss you. I always do.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Red, White & Blue Phoenix Rises Over Washington DC & New York 11/09/2016

The things we will learn about this election once the dumpster fire dies out should be fascinating? From the supposed Russian government connections to the intensive hacking effort; to the FBI’s inner strife; to the Trump campaigns war on facts; to the Clinton’s in general; the things we don’t know and the things we think we know will likely shed much light upon the disease that’s afflicted our democratic processes and political institutions? Many books will be written and many career’s will likely be made from the ashes like some red, white and blue Phoenix ascending to mega media glory.

Is Putin really directly involved meddling in our democratic process? If you believe the “17 Intelligence Agencies” Clinton claims have asserted this to be true then we could be moderately worried. Or not. Really? Do we actually think Russia is to blame for the two least trusted, disliked Presidential candidates in the history of our Republic as our only viable choices? I’d surmise the blame lies in altogether separate venues, with Russia, if they truly are meddling, only a byproduct of these failures.

  1. American voters in 2016 are especially ignorant. Not stupid, but purely and willfully ignorant. Many voters are following their hearts far and above their minds. Facts don’t matter to too many out there who are just angry, depressed and confused, whether justifiably or not, to the direction the country seems to be traveling despite their will in opposition to that direction. Or, they just wont vote, unlike the 2008 election with its soaring optimism and hope, this year seems antithetical to that promise.
  2. Politicians are generally in the bag, despite their words or even genuine care and concern for their constitutes. Democracy is broken. The entire system IS rigged. The whole system is bought and paid for. Democracy is an illusion of the elite media conjured up to avoid economic truths. The wider public understands this truth, feels it and lives it even if they cannot put their finger on it. Many know Trump is an idiot, a charlatan, a phony, but he is NOT Washington DC.

 

I know this is very simplistic as political analysis goes. It doesn’t apply exclusively, of course. Yet, it is a mood and a feeling that’s prevalent throughout the country. Democrats were scared into nominating Hillary Clinton and Republicans scared the GOP into nominating Donald Trump. Dem’s were scared a Bernie Sanders would lose to any GOP candidate and Republican politicians are scared they wont if they oppose Trump. And the fear multiplies.

The Russians are coming! Fear. ISIL is coming! Fear. Shari’a Law is coming to Sunnyvale! Fear. Trump is a Fascist! Fear. Hillary is a crook…and a woman! Fear. China is bleeding us dry! Fear. Ebola, Socialism, no 2nd amendment, Lizard People! Fear. Fear. Fear…F..Okay, totally fake. What do almost all of these possibilities have in common? They are largely out of our control. And that’s the problem in a giant hairy nutshell. People who have felt in control for so long in this country feel as though they are losing that control and it’s frightening.

Donald Trump is going to lose badly on Tuesday. The election that is. The American people were simply his next “mark” or “sucker,” that’s all. He’ll bleed this fear for all its worth, that we can be almost certain of. He’ll play the victim like always. He’ll bully with litigation and Twitter; the courts and the web. He’ll ruin what’s left of the GOP and likely make it impossible for Clinton to govern with Congress as a partner. That’s all great for him and bad for the rest of us no doubt.

So much could happen out of the realm of prediction that might affect a Clinton Administration, positively or negatively. We can safely assume the level of sexism will escalate in proportion to her poll numbers. We can assume the military will continue absorbing half our budget and new wars and conflict will appear, new dragons to slay and freedom to protect. The Earth will continue to warm, the seas will rise and someone, somewhere, will proficize the imminent end of the world. The NSA will scoop up everything and store it forever. The police will become more militarized and Black Lives Matter will struggle and push against the howling winds of our history.

And if I’m still here, after nights alone, again and again, with suicide a desire and not a wish; I’ll continue complaining and suffering my soul. The present is so small and we forget the immensity of it all. We are but a speck on a speck on a tiny point of a smaller dot on a sailing place in time. I’ll hope these words matter, yet be maddeningly disappointed in tomorrow. There is a war I’m fighting still, downrange in my sorry home.

It’s snowing and that brings forth nice memories of places before the storm. I’m waiting for you with a smile and a hot cocoa, wondering why we parted so many long years ago. I think of you everyday. I think of you and pray to a God that hears nothing but hatred in this ankle-deep snow. I’m still waiting love for me to come home.

updated 2119 11/05/2016

Scanning through this I realized several open-ended assertions were made with zero follow up. From my skeptisism of our intelligence agencies public leaks or claims of Russian State involvement to Clinton citing “17 agencies” confirming Russian State meddling, I’m pretty sure my sarcasm was overt.

If you believe our Coast Guard Intelligence Agency, National Geospatial Intelligence Agency or the National Reconnisence Office chimed in on Russian hacking, well, you might should put the blunt down? When it comes to the NSA, the FBI or the CIA making declarations of fact, we should all be on guard. In my opinion, I tend to only believe something after the US government officially denies it. And where does this info come from or, how did it get to Clinton? A classified briefing? You see where I’m going, right? Of course The Donald is going to challenge the claims: He pretty much automatically disagrees with Hillary like some weird robotic autopilot meme. Doesn’t mean he supports Russia…I am suspicious however.

I wonder just how damaging Trump would be as POTUS? There has been some good points offered by experts in foreign relations no doubt. It would be degrading in the eyes of the global elite writ large. But Armegeddon? Not likely, but why chance it when Clinton is on deck to propell us onward? Another decade of war? No problem, right?

I should have left this post alone.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#WAR, #ECONOMICS & #AMERICA

There are few things that anger the disenfranchised, dispossessed or the marginalized more than those who hold great power, fail to exercise it, yet reap massive rewards. It’s been said that the people will tolerate a despot, fight for a king, crush a parasite. This proven fact of human nature goes against most of what we, as Americans, are taught and believe to be true. How else can we explain the reverence of a Napoleon, a Hitler or the brutal 50 year reign of a murderous Joseph Stalin? Not one of these characters ruled their states with the interest of the ordinary citizen a priority, to the contrary, yet they ruled, long after their true nature was exposed. The final Tzar of the Russian Romanov dynasty, Nicholas, was cloaked in immense generational power, yet in the dark hours of World War I, was largely coupe up in his great palaces, steeped in mystical ritual, his great wealth flaunted in the face of a people gripped in fear and increasing poverty. In theory, his power was far beyond anything Lenin or Stalin could ever attain, yet within a year his entire family was exterminated after several hundred years of rule. Erased.

I’ve seen war from the perch of a proud American. I’ve seen war through the eyes of a related witness. And I’ve seen war up close, the smell, the exhaustion, confusion and taste of it. I use the word “war” in each instance, yet in neither is the word applied the same. If you’ve encountered it in the form of a verb, it continues, forever, to remain so. War as entertainment has a purpose in culture, albeit it a nefarious one. Those in the business of making war must promote the fiction of it or face the elimination of it as business. Marching off for Boeing or Lockheed Martin doesn’t have the same patriotic ring as marching off to save democracy or vanquish evil. How many young men would sign up voluntarily to fight a war the Politicians and Generals have secretly come to realize is unwinnable? Who’s gonna volunteer for combat against an enemy that is only fighting you because you’re trespassing on their property?

I watched a decent documentary on YouTube last night called “The Fall of Mosul.” It does tend to oversimplify some of the relevant facts, however, in broad strokes, the filmmaker does a good job historically documenting the City of Mosul from ancient times to roughly six months ago. So much of human history is a part of the region, revealing, I think, much of the folly our current policies never seem to acknowledge, learn from or even truly comprehend?

For now I must leave it at that. My next column I hope to explain my assessment of our current state of undeclared war and how our current politics seems to either dismiss any discussion that’s “out-of-bounds,” so to speak, or betray a shockingly little breadth of historical truth.

Any and all comments are welcome and appreciated. Thanks

Feel the Donald

I’m aware of the fact that my mind hasn’t been quite right, and getting progressively worse, over the course of the last 10 years. All things being equal though, isn’t this presidential election cycle remarkably insane? It can’t just be me, right? Usually politics offers only maddening pandering and empty promises that I tend to cynically see right through. 2016 though, I mean fuck, this country really is on some runaway train. Let me run through some of the more bizarre theatrics.

First of all, Hillary Clinton. Hearing her speak enters my brain on the frequency shared by fingernails on the chalkboard. Her canned responses, punctuated by the repeated “ummm’s,” and “ugh’s” come across as something even worse than phony. Now, I am not one to punish a politician for their so-called “evolving” as the country goes. My distinction with Hillary, fully acknowledged and accepted by the media punditry, is her “shifting to the left,” in response to Bernie voters. There is something so disingenuous with these tactics the press never seems to put their finger on? What should be pointed out is that because of these “pivots,” the electorate never truly knows where she stands on any given issue? My biggest frustration with her is this “press” voice she presents during interviews. I’m almost positive that if she would just speak her heart, and not her mind, voters would accept small differences between them and her? Instead, she tries to be a chameleon, succeeding in one way at least: her slithering is like a lizard.

And then we have the Donald. What the fuck republicans? I have to think there will be eventual consequences to not standing up to his behavior by elected Governor’s, Senator’s and Representatives? I feel like the nation is under a “War of the Worlds” spell with this guy. That is, really stupid people are lining up behind him because….what? He tells it like it is? He’s the opposite actually. He tells the truth no matter what people think? No! He does the exact opposite. All he does care about is what people think. Most of all; what people think about him. He is the product of our uber-celebritized, reality TV, WWF, obsession with money culture that is eroding our culture. Either he will be elected or he wont. Either way, the future will pass cruel judgement upon the current state of affairs, greed, ignorance and dishonesty. And don’t fucking compare Trump to Reagan! There are no similarities, period. The thing with the worst decisions humans tend to make is that they are unique. History is littered with lessons to occlude most events. I have a feeling the Donald is about as close to one of a kind as we can find?

What about Bernie Sander’s? Of course I like the man. But consider how weak Clinton is as a candidate that a self described Socialist is nipping her heels all the way to the convention? I would argue even, if democratic primaries were all open, allowing anybody the vote, she would have lost. The establishment of which she is the star player has quite literally pulled her through, despite the country’s repeated attempts to burn it all down. I have a feeling it’s not over, despite the mainstream media’s conclusion otherwise? With this cast of characters it’s impossible to foresee a month from now? Bernie understands this as well, hence his continuing campaign. Feel The Bern.

What does it all mean for Veteran’s and active duty servicemen and women? Today Hillary delivered a speech on what the media called “foreign policy,” but I call Trump trolling. It’s rich for her to question Trump’s acumen on these issues considering her track record? The nerve! Trump never cast a vote authorizing Bush to invade Iraq? She did. How many people have suffered because of that disaster? Millions. Including about 3,000 dead American soldiers, another 30,000 severely wounded. Now, Trump would be a national disgrace, in my opinion, but Hillary needs to stop with the higher than thou bullshit and reflect on her poor decisions, like the overthrowing of the Libyan regime. That country is a hot mess now, violent, and another base of operations for ISIS. But yeah, she wants Assad gone and a no fly zone in Syria? Also consider none of these candidates served in the military or have children in service. Trump went to a military academy as a rotten little child. 

I have to take a break. WEW!