poetry

~ Finally ~

~ Finally ~

Here she is, finally
Standing before me
Something I only ever dreamt of
In some deluded way
During times of darkness
And desperation.

A quiet humbleness comes over me
Like standing before a natural force
With a depth and beauty
I just can’t understand

I always felt about the age of thirty
I’d stop my rampage
And meet the woman
Who would finally straighten me out

Dylan called it ‘shelter from the storm’
And it certainly feels that way
As the warmth of her 
Causes puddles of pain
To form at my feet

In the morning I lie with her in bed
Her dog lays beside it
His head rested on the carpet 
Eyes staring up at me
With a knowing look of recognition.

I say goodbye, kiss her
Walk out into the day
And suddenly things are different
The little things don’t matter
Trivial troubles are nothing

I smile and say hello to the people I pass
I hold the shop door open for the person behind me
Everything is okay;
Life is not so bad after all.

I know that this feeling probably won’t last
But for now, it’s enough
To know that a single soul can shine so brightly
Like sunlight coming through the forest canopy
Breathing life into my world
Blooming my flowers
Turning me into a dreamer

And if this is just another delusion
Then let me stay deluded
For my world has never looked so good
Now that I know
She’s in it.

poetry

~ Shackled ~

~ Shackled ~

Like a seabird in oily water
Or a turtle stuck in plastic
I want to rise up from this mess
And break free from this muck
That the world has poured onto me

I know these wings can flap
I know my soul can sing
And that my spirit can soar
Into skies of light and life

But here I am:
Caught like the rest
Cemented down and
Starved of something essential

I have become like so many on these streets
Trapped in an unfulfilling life
Weighed down by something silent
No longer hunting what is mine
Or doing what comes natural

Now I sit in traffic jams
And stare at electronic screens
Now I collect my prey in plastic
Packaged for me on supermarket shelves

Now getting out of bed in the morning
Seems like a pointless task.
And my greatest endeavour
Is buying discounted food.

God, give me some wilderness once more
Give me the sunlight rising over the mountains
Give me the sound of rain on the forest canopy
Give me the eagle circling high above the canyon

Just give me something pure
And untamed
To awaken my soul
Loosen my shackles
And bring me back home
To myself.

poetry

~ This Burning Mess ~

~ This Burning Mess ~

I wanna write from a place where no one else has been before
I want to pour forth new truths that could have only come from me
I don’t have time for words that don’t mean anything
I’m not here to put down more scripted sentences

I’m here to speak my truth
To scream and shout
And share something in my soul
That little bit of unique fire burning
Only the way it can within me

It is fueled by all my pains and mistakes
By all my victories and defeats
And I want it to blaze bright
Showing the light
Of all my life has been

This burning brilliant mess.

poetry

~ Resigned to the Fact ~

~ Resigned to the Fact ~

Well, I guess this is it:
Thirty-one-years-old
All grown now
Fully-developed
The soul-searching done
I know who I am.
The result is in

And what is it that I am?

It’s not a lot.
It’s not a lot at all.

No useful skills
No place of belonging
No way of living sustainably
No chance of mental stability

It’s nothing but chaos
Frequent episodes of insanity
And spells of disillusionment
That leave me holding onto the rails
As life’s hurricane rips me apart

It’s not some momentary feeling
I’ve lived enough years now to know
That I’m always gonna be this way
Shifting from one crisis to the next
From one battle to the next
From one bender to the next

Yes, periods of peace shall occasionally arrive
There will be moments of contentment
Even times when I feel happy to be alive

But they won’t last long.
They won’t last long at all.

Because I know who I am now.
I’ve lived the years and walked the walk
And this is what I’ll have to deal with:
Some sort of malfunctioning mistake
Stumbling and staggering along
Fighting to survive.

I guess the first thing I should do is accept it
But I can’t help but feel
Disappointed, dejected
And even angry inside

This isn’t how it should be.

I wanted to live life
Not deal with it
Or cope with it
Or find ‘a way to get by’

I wanted to live life.

I wanted to live.



poetry

~ And What Are You Scared Of ~

~ And What Are You Scared Of? ~

Scared that my life will become pointless
That my soul will be diluted down
My mind filled with garbage
And my words lacking in truth

Scared that nothingness will become my reality
That the mirror reflection will be empty
My eyes devoid of light
My heart shrouded in greyness

Scared that the bastards will win
And make me one of their own
And the wilderness in me
Will be paved over
Ground down
Drained of its colour

Each year I can feel that concrete creeping
The bulldozers doing their damage
My curiosity fading
My leaves being stripped away

There is a helplessness about me these days
The vigour of youth has escaped me
My inner voice remains silent
Even my madness begins to fade

And I’m scared…

Scared that these words will run out
And everything good in me will die
As my body becomes an empty vessel

Scared that I’ll grow old
And no longer see the beauty
Sense the magic
Nor feel the wonder

Scared not of pain or torture
Nor of death or darkness
But scared of existing
And breathing the air
And beating my heart
And waking up each day

While no longer being alive.

thoughts

~ The Hidden Cracks ~

~ The Hidden Cracks ~

‘Appearances can be deceiving, so they say. And you look at those cities from above and what do you see? You see everything standing straight and upright. Everything is organised, cemented down, and fixed into its correct place. There is a perfectly-engineered quality to it all. But appearances can be deceiving and in those neatly-lined houses what do you find? You find people. You find people who are not as strong and sturdy as the cities they live in. You find people who are slowly breaking down, disintegrating, being held together by the smallest things; little vices that get them through each day without collapsing. Drugs. Alcohol. Therapy. Violence. Many of those people on the surface, just like those cities, look stable on the surface. Their clothes are neat, their shoes polished, and their hair straight. But take a careful look and you’ll often see the hidden cuts and cracks behind those shiny appearances. Open your eyes and you’ll see the self-harm scars of the girl serving you coffee in the cafe; you’ll see the trembling hand of the alcoholic businessman on the train; you’ll see the bloodshot eyes of the smiling mother at the school gates. Wipe off the makeup of the modern world and you’ll see that under its surface, many people are slowly crumbling under the pressure of it. Every day the slow demolition of many people’s souls is happening all around us. Meanwhile, the city stands strong; the traffic lights flick from red to green, the bins are emptied, everything is in order and running smoothly. But as this civilisation continues to do its thing, a continual sickness pervades among its populace. This empire of sand is somehow held together by hoards of people suffering in whatever way imaginable. From one week to the next, they are slowly going on while dealing with their demons, fighting their battles, journeying through their darkness. In workplaces. In homes. In spaces so lonely that even with a million people around them, they still feel like they’re marooned on some distant planet.’

poetry

~ Morning Light ~

Morning Light

Still falling in love with it all
These days it’s getting worse
The twinkling lights in her eyes
The birds flying in the dawn sky
And the reflection on the water

Maybe it’s me getting older
But I can feel myself evening out
Experiencing some sort of contentment
As I stare into those pupils
Into the universe of her soul
Letting myself feel some joy
As the despair drifts away.

I never believed in angels
But sometimes it’s hard not to
At least see where the idea came from
Like in those good moments
Watching her smile as she awakens
The light coming through the window
Another day stirring like
A quiet happiness in my heart.

I have dwelled in the darkness
Been haunted by strange voices
Hunted by demonic creatures
Loomed over by the vultures

And that is how I know the light
When I see it

That is how I know
She’s the one
To throw open the curtains
And finally show me 
What this life 
Is about.

thoughts

~ And Now What? ~


~ And Now What? ~

It was sometime around my 31st birthday when my youth came to a natural conclusion just as I knew it always would. Suddenly the idea of jumping on a plane halfway around the world to go backpacking seemed beyond me. I couldn’t imagine having the same needs and desires as I had just a few years previously. That life now seemed like a foreign thing to me. The disappearance of enthusiasm had left me like a walking shrug of the shoulders. And standing on those nightclub dancefloors was now a sobering affair; I listened to the music and looked at the bright young faces with an ache in my heart. They were people that I now didn’t belong to. Their eyes were full of wonder and they were walking a path I had already walked; living a life I had already lived; feeling things I had already felt. But now in my 30s what was I supposed to be doing? These were the years when you settled down and established some sort of base and routine. Mortgages and marriages; contracts and careers; security and stability. All of that was just as foreign as those young people now seemed to me. I was a man caught in nowhere and I knew the next stage of my life would be a bewildering one. All stages of my life had been bewildering to some degree – and I guess I was used to sailing through some sort of foggy sea – but at least my ship was powered by some sort of existential fuel. That inner fire was now almost completely out and I had nothing to throw on it to make it burn again. My vigour was gone and I was now at the mercy of the indifferent current of life’s great ocean – a waiting shipwreck drifting towards the jagged rocks of inevitability.

Such thoughts can almost be too much to bear, so naturally I tried to console myself by considering that things in my life weren’t so bad. I told myself that I had now reached some sort of important intersection where I simply needed to reset and recalibrate. I considered that for once having someone else to share my journey with could be the way forward. Twelve years into adulthood, I had still never really shared my life path with anyone else for more than a few months. Maybe sharing this human experience was what I finally needed to find some meaning in my life again? Perhaps even dedicating myself to a singular task in one place would get my inner fire burning again? The more I thought about it, the more I couldn’t shake the thought that this was just the tiredness talking. Such weariness was what I figured got many people sinking into the grooves of middle-aged mediocrity. Pretty soon you’d be sucked into all the usual traps: putting on weight, loss of creativity, consumerism, bad cholesterol, aches, pains, stress, road rage, credit cards, and close-minded thinking. I imagined sitting on a sofa and staring blankly at a television screen, my belly protruding out ever further year by year as my mind became stale. It seemed to me that so many people seeped out in this middle stage of life; wounded or exhausted by the first part of their lives, they settled down into a space where their spirit slowly seeped out of them until all that was left was a hollow shell. I didn’t determine myself to be melodramatic when I thought of the same thing happening to me. In fact, at that moment in time, it seemed the most likely outcome.

No, if these things weren’t the way either, then what was? Buddhism? Stoicism? Adventure sports? I wanted to keep my soul full of fire, but I just wasn’t sure of the ‘how’ now that my interests were waning. In a time of perpetual confusion, I returned to the keyboard to strike out a few sentences. Something about it was pleasurable – like spitting in the face of someone trying to kill you. Although my connection to other things in my life was fading, writing was still always there like a constant companion in a world of transients. I guess every man had his one medicine that he could always turn to. But when I thought about it, it was even true that the amount I wrote now had dropped drastically in the last couple of years. I recalled the moment after publishing my first book at twenty-six – me telling myself that I was going to publish book after book, at least once a year for the rest of my life. I’d travel and write and chase my desires until the setting of my sun. Now such a feeling seemed like blind optimism. Worst of all, it just seemed like plain hard work. Things I once did for fun, or because I simply couldn’t stop myself, now seemed like work. It was that very feeling which spelt out the enormity of the spiritual crisis I was facing. 

Indeed, it’s a constant spiritual battle. Living a life worth living and staying true to yourself in this world, in this society, is something that does not come easily. I knew from what I had observed that living without will or conviction will very quickly result in you being lured into places where you will be lessened down. The temptations, escapisms and addictions find you quickly. Such things lure the passive man into a trap from which he may never escape throughout his whole journey upon this earth. In some way, I knew who I was and what I stood for. But maintaining that self always and existing in society was a perpetual battle – especially when my mind was in this foggy and confusing state. I knew solitude served me well from experience; in that sanctuary of isolation, one could not be corrupted by the voices of others and gradually tune into the inner voice. But as always, the human desire for interaction would force me back out onto the streets, into the bars, into the beds of women who would twist my mind up. They would make me lose whatever self-assurance I had and leave me once again a confused dumb kid with pain in his heart, looking for something to alleviate the eternal sadness.

On top of this, I knew at the age of thirty I was not even halfway through this struggle of living a life worth living. But I found some solace in the memories of the past; the fact that I had walked my own path after university, that I travelled to the places I wanted to travel, wrote in a way I wanted to write, that I had experienced blissful states of consciousness and found some deep inner truths. But yes, finally the wave had crashed and I lay dazed in the sand wondering ‘and now what?’ Oh god, I didn’t want to end up this way. I always thought I was strong enough not to be slain by the pitfalls of older age. I always thought the fire would flicker forever in my heart, laughing its flames outward in defiance of ever being snuffed out. But it appears to be dwindling. The only thing for me to do right now is to face the issue and recognise that something has to change. 

Something,

Has to change.

poetry

~ Something Has to Change ~

~ Something Has to Change ~

Out on the streets, I see them
The drunk students partying
The skaters flipping their boards
The young people doing their thing

It only seems like a couple of years ago
That I was one of them
Wide-eyed and reckless
Careless and confused
Excited to be alive

Well now the years have gone by
And I approach the age of thirty-one
By no means an old age
But for some reason, I feel old
Older than one should feel at this age
Looking at them jovial kids
I just can’t help but wonder
What has happened to me

Nowadays I don’t dream of something ridiculous
Nowadays I’m not bursting with vigour
Nowadays I don’t get hurt like I used to
I don’t feel the thrill like I used to
I don’t chase desires like I used to

A mist has descended; the hunger fades
The fire that I thought would roar forever wanes

I guess this is what they call growing up
I always knew it would have its downfalls
But this total apathy with existence
Is something I didn’t quite anticipate.

I know the story:
Getting older
Losing the spark,
Your energy dwindling
As the quiet desperation of
Middle-age sets in.

Is this what awaits us all?
Is this why they say youth is wasted on the young?
Is this why we have children?
To give ourselves another chance?

Naturally, I consider the alternative: not growing old.

Most say growing old is better than dying young
But who can be sure?
At the very least,
Checking out early feels like a cop-out
Although I understand how such weariness
Can turn a person toward it.

I can’t keep fading out like this anyway
I’ve decided that something needs to change
I won’t try to force myself to be young again
But something needs shaking up

I’m not hoping for angels or epiphanies
Or to feel excitement like I once did
Or to dance on dancefloors like I once did
Or to flip skateboards like I once did

But something has to change

Something,

Has to change.

poetry

~ The Collapse is Coming

collapse 2

~ The Collapse is Coming ~

It’s all coming to an end anyway

Civilisation and late-stage capitalism

These methods of living will soon be the past

I’m not sure on the exact details 

but it’s clear to me that the collapse is coming.

.

Things people believed in will be shown

For the mere illusions that they are.

Their mansions of security will crumble into dust

Their pensions will be redundant 

Their jobs will be no longer exist

And the whole house of cards will come falling down

In one great disintegration.

.

Due to this looming fact I’ve decided 

To no longer participate in this circus

I’m going to work a part-time job

Low-status and zero stress

I’ll live like a hermit and buy only what I need

I’ll conserve my mental and physical health

While building myself up like a skyscraper

As everything else falls apart around me

.

If I still need money then I’ll find alternative ways to get it

Without subjecting myself to their circus

.

I’ll do whatever it takes to stay disconnected

Those morning traffic jams will not feature me

Those tedious meetings will not feature me

Those therapy sessions will not feature me

Those petty arguments will not feature me 

.

I’ll be too busy experiencing a simple bliss 

While just sitting and staring into space

Practising meditation and sleeping well

Writing poetry and not caring if anyone reads it

I won’t need a television when I’ll be entertained enough

By the obvious beauty of the world that nearly everyone misses

.

My only goal is to be myself;

To be nothing but my total self

Living with inner wealth

In a developed state of being.

.

Because the time has come

And the collapse is coming

So I’m creating my own civilisation

A utopian town with a population of one

I’ve given up on anyone else populating it with me

This is what all the philosophers found anyway

All the sages like Thoereau and Nietzche

Like Buddha and Bukowski

.

It’s better to be alone

To cultivate your own happiness

To not depend on another’s acceptance 

Or on shiny cars or green lawns

.

It’s better to turn your eyes inward

To take the journey to the self

And become a free man

Unshackled by a society

Whose failure is evident

On every street

In every tired face

In every sullen eye

In every angry voice

In every honking car

.

Let them shout and strain

Let them beep and bark

And continue in their doomed circus

Totally unaware that the collapse is coming

.

And my civilisation is being built.