Scraps from a Past Self

This is for you, darlings of future self. This is for you, darling future self. This is a look into who I was back then, before you, before us.

worldbetweenworlds:

Anis Mojgani at The Seattle Grand Slam 2006 performing “Direct Orders,” “Here I Am,” and “Shake the Dust.” Watch the goosebumps grow.

Shake the dust.

worldbetweenworlds:

The Information Man

September 09, 2005

After over 300,000 miles,
12-dozen breakdowns nervous,
one too many midnights
and a bunch of broken laws later,
I have come here from out of the rain
and into this rest area
caught 22 miles between you and me,
watching the information man
behind his information booth
juggling predictable conversation
with folks who look like iceberg lettuce
and who believe that somehow
the flat lines of small talk will give us life.
I want them to leave,
like a big deal orchestra removing itself from the stringed section
so I can fiddle with fate and make music.

There is a distance the size of bravery.
It forms like words in the mouth of a baby reaching out
for the point where all things meet.
On one end of it sits an info guy
who I imagine holds down his second job as church bartender
behind locked doors leading to the bell tower
we are not allowed see.
At the other end of this space
I am standing like shoe polish on an overstocked shelf
hoping that one day someone will pick me to make things better.
This is not a showdown or a shootout.
we are not facing off.
But I can feel the rumble between dusk and dawn
as if the chance to come clean with myself
will be outlawed
unless I relax.

I have heard
that if you pull a bent breath
through the second hole of a harmonica
tuned to the key of Georgia
while a train moves by
on the tail end of dusk
there is a good chance
you will finally know
what it means
to rest.
I
have not yet rested.

It takes a long time to make love
with someone who hates themselves.
It feels like I’ve been standing here
for exactly that long when, at last,
the rain outside drops off
and takes everyone in the rest area with it
except for me, and the info guy.

If we were created in God’s image
then when God was a child
He smushed fire ants with His finger tips
and avoided tough questions.
There are ways around being the go-to person,
even for ourselves,
but today I will get the answer
and you know what I’m talking about,
THE answer.
Emphasis on EE answer…

So I put my best foot forward
and take the kind of deep breath
that gives me away
as someone who deals with anxiety
and odd numbers
every other
other every minute.
In between it,
the info guy’s eyes grab me
and shift
back & forth,
like mopping floors
(with the sweat I sweat
in battles against myself).
He’s got me locked in and is smiling.

If you’ve never been rocked back by the presence of purpose
this poem is too soon for you.
Return to your mediocrity
plug it into an amplifier
and re-think yourself
because some of us are on fire for the answer.
I am ready for rejection
and rebirthing balance in my stutter steps
when the info guy finally pipes up
like C.R. Avery on a piano box
and says to me:

I can tell you’re lookin’ for answers
in the same way I can see when Kenny Rogers is out of aces,
so for a taste of your whiskey
I’ll give you some advice…
[laughs]
I’m just fuckin’ with ya.
Yer not allowed to have alcohol here;
it’s a rest area, dude. Listen,
if I didn’t have so much of this life all wrong
I would have gotten it right by now.
I talk a whole bunch
but I really only know a few things,
so I’m not saying to follow along verbatim here.
I’ll just tell ya the things I tell myself -
the things I know –
and you can see what sticks…

I know our shoes were stitched from songs about highways.
The best songs are the ones about Georgia
even though I’ve never been there.
It’s the only place I still believe in Jesus.

I know that no matter what it is you believe in,
you’ve got to spare yourself the futility of making fun of God
because that guy hasn’t even talked in like…
ever.

I know troubleshooting yourself in the foot
and acting as center of your own universe
is a tricky dichotomy to deal with
but, yes, you ARE the center of the universe.
If you weren’t
you wouldn’t be here.
So as the middle of space and everything floating in it
it is your job to know
that the emptiness
is just emptiness,
that the stars
are stars,
and that the flying rocks –
fuckin’ hurt,
so please
stop inviting walls into wide open spaces.

I know everything is out there.
It’s why they call it everything.

I know there are times
when you will lay your head to rest
and have a moment of brilliance
that grows into a perfect order of words
but you will fall asleep
instead of painting it down on paper.
When you wake up,
you will have forgotten the idea completely
and miss it like a front tooth
but at least you know how to recognize moments of brilliance,
because even at your worst
you are fucking incredible.
It comes honest.

So return to yourself,
even if you’re already there,
because no matter where you go
or how hard you try
or what you do
the only person you’re ever gonna get to be
(and I know it)

is you.

Italics are my own. Please stop building those walls.

Dear Future Girlfriend,

worldbetweenworlds:

notestomyfuturegirlfriend:

I won’t readily admit it, but my history says it for me. I’m a runner. I run when I’m scared. When things get rough, I run away from my problems instead of facing them. I’m a coward that way. I run and I reinvent myself. Start from scratch. Maybe that’s the reason for my dissociation.

But the…

Tie me down if you have to.

Dear Future Girlfriend,

worldbetweenworlds:

notestomyfuturegirlfriend:

Please find me soon… I’m lonely, and I’m broken, and I need fixing. I know you’ll be able to fix me, and I promise I’ll love you with everything I’ve got, because I know you’re perfect and you’ll mean the world to me. Please don’t keep me waiting, I need you more right now than ever…

Love,

Me

I need fixing because I’m breaking. Broken. Shattered, really.

Dear future partner[s],

worldbetweenworlds:

I encourage you to tell me that you think I’m wrong and why. I don’t expect us to agree all the time. I would be bored if we did, in fact. Keep me thinking and you’ll keep me in all ways.

Love,

Me