Thursday, November 3, 2016


“He had tasted something or seen or heard something which filled him with the purest pain, which had in some grim and unspeakable way frightened him beyond belief.”
—Colm Toibin, The Testament of Mary

You wonder what is lying beneath the surface of your discontent, what is derailing all good intentions with regularity. Are you weak or slovenly; many things counter this notion as false. What gnaws relentlessly at the spirit, in the intestines, over the works of the day, making you mute or immobile? The things you have seen or heard stay within the memory, some below the surface, others in the frontal lobe. Persistent they are since some realities tend to repeat themselves, allowing renewed belief in their existence. An epiphany of cruelty close to home; the ease of the murderer, the rapist, your own darkness. Once you have seen such things, you may see more. Some never experience such truths, or illusions as they may be. But you have and they are often unforgettable. They lie in wait in the thin veil between consciousness and submersion. They color many days and nights of the oppressed. Some never let such disadvantages get to them though. They roar in self-aggrandizement and rise to the top of their skill set. Witnessing this can be uplifting.

To rid oneself of the melancholy addiction, make resolution after identification. Shall you stay imprisoned for an eternity? It does not matter the date at which you may find yourself engulfed in its grips. What matters is the awareness of its power. And the desire to move out of victimhood, the one-song litany of resentment, the overriding of all benefits in your life. You may step to the edge, almost teetering into the abyss of your own making, with vile acts at your backside. You may topple all you made with one bad night. It is no matter. You get up and begin again. More have done this than you expect. More have faced insurmountable odds and got back in the game. Some have succumbed. You do not want to be that part of the population. You want to strive, climbing the steep, slippery way to the summit. You keep on against all actions, finding the good often can outlive the bad. Yes, you have seen such things to make the doctor cry. Yes, you have had reruns of the violent sort. Must you stay there recreating all that has gone before? Why not take that special knowledge of your survival to the bank. Go to the gradient of rejuvenation for a dive into the deep blue. It does not matter you cannot swim, for drowning in grievances surely does not suffice.

All this is wonderfully optimistic. There may be times when you do not want to be. You cannot because events weigh you down. The roots of abomination dig far into the soil. You have grown there. You have matured there. It is as part of your composition as is the world turning. I understand. You will perish if you stay festering in a pit you feel you cannot get out of. Drowned. Deadened. Numb. Mute or screaming, come to oxygenated relief. Shall you stay under the frozen river’s center, live at a distance? Telescopic visions fascinate. Remoteness invites, it calls your name. Stay if you must.

Pop the key, break the safe instead. Be a burglar of your own persuasion. Invade the corners of your mind with an alternative of some creative effort. Channel your marketable talents. Open the door. Live better.

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