no time to waste

paddling around, arguing with myself over every last little thing until I’m exhausted by the tug of war and finally resort to escapism of several different kinds, I waste time.

the fact is I am not of an age where potential counts for anything whatsoever– only the work of daily action, only engaging with our outright, most intrinsic and authentic selves. in actuality, it could all be taken away in the next breath, or the next, or the one after that, in an accident of transportation or health or random circumstance.

all my life I’ve done battle with a fierce internal editor– one part the wrassling wild inner heart from which flows most vivid creative juices and the other this starched and pinned, bespectacled and buttoned-up magistrate whose hyperactive gavel decrees out of order over and over on a hair trigger. much of my life has been spent knuckling under to presumed civilizing forces– keeping myself in check, toeing an arbitrary line, fastening the lid shut with spit and chewing gum and heavy books of rules of order.

what works itself up inside springs from pressure cooking and, sooner or later, blows the patch job wide open in great swoops of unrestrained impulse: five year old me, unable any longer to bear being ignored by the grownups, walked down to the river, scooped up a jugful of water, and tossed it high up in the air, up to the the bridge where they all sat above me, soaking the back of the worst offender; after college, miserying my way through a cardboard “real world” job/lifestyle (with repeated violent bouts of salmonella-induced vomiting– there was a terrible outbreak in the eggs that year– surely signifying some urge for psychic expulsion), I got up one day and drove from the west coast to the east of our broad country, all unannounced upon the doorstep of a virtual stranger, in search of a big answer; hating it long enough, I’ll quit my job or move to a new city without a well-articulated or -constructed plan of next steps– just do. and deal with the consequences.

a sloppy and wasteful way of proceeding. and for what? some rationalized idea of being acceptable/responsible/normal? by no means even a desirable goal.

wouldn’t it be better to evolve some better terms between the savage and the jailer? the savage, after all, far from truly savage– at most bleedingly human, substantive, weeping, real– full of the force of aria and tarantella– my own best self, squashed and shackled, wanting only to shine out and range onward openly.

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