Friday, September 30, 2011

Blossom Of Our Knowledge

Age and damage have not withered this bloom,

As long as words live, reality's doom

Cannot touch it. It lies in kept fields.

Untainted by today, Respect is its shield.

It gathers its spores as time rushes ahead,

Until it is plucked for some light to be shed.

Forever generous, so willing to share.

A task so eternal, its vast knowledge to bear.

Step in through the portal, the petals reveal

A new teeming world at your feet does kneel.

The overwhelming beauty of a place unknown,

A unique view of the world is sown.

A mirror to the past, of beliefs and ideas.

A look to the future, of thoughts and fears.

Leather's coccoon, within lies Beauty's devotion,

Binding its pages, my mind and emotion.

But now my friend, this tale is at its end.

Leave this world and let another transcend.




Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Sky's Love

Grace incarnate; they gently sway to the row and rhythm of the universe herself. Sweeping back and forth across the great ballroom's dark floor, flecked with flickering candles, they are one: inseparable.

No words swapped, their dance speaks volumes as they stir and kindle passion in the hearts of the enthralled audience. Auroral ardor drives them, not lust nor mania, but an indescribable, natural need for each other.

Completely oblivious to the worlds around them, all willingly and knowingly ensnared in their spellbinding swing, they dance only for themselves: as simple as a kiss, yet as powerful as making love.

The tempo builds, the rhythm throbbing and thirsting for more as their natural cadence reverberates through the unnatural world.

But all things find their end and, as unpredictable and fickle as Love itself, the music finally dies. Silence still.

And in a final almost-fluid gesture, taking their bows, the partners dance off into the dark. Waiting 'til their song starts anew.



Monday, September 19, 2011


It's cold.

There is no wind, no breeze and everything stands still. I rub my hands together desperately, sparking something as of yet unintelligible. As I shrink into my long coat, my eyes dart from side to side of this desolate highway. Nothing for miles. Not as far as the eye can see. The trees are bare. The grass has long since died. My eyes dart up. Where is the light? It's neither bright nor dark. It's eventide, but the source eludes my wary mind. The sun has disappeared, though not a cloud lies in his stead. The moon is gone, her starry children orphaned and hidden. I am alone.

Where am I going? I don't know. Just keep moving forward, I guess. Some small part of me remembers something. Something vague. Something blurry. A sign? I strain my eyes, squinting to see something I know isn't there. Where is it?


My mind is my own, but my body isn't. It shakes and convulses, dancing to a sick, twisted and unnatural tune that nobody can hear. I'm spinning out of control. What is this? But before I can answer, before anyone can answer, I go limp and fall to my knees. Head bowed, I keep my eyes closed shut. Where can I go?

The road before me melts. It's dulled white lanes sink into the black pavement - now grey. No feeling. No emotion. Nothing. I pick myself up slowly, getting to my feet only to feel something deep, dark and dank. My heart seeping through the soles of my shoes. Lost. I try to fight it. I desperately grapple with such intense gravity, but it is a losing battle. The more I fight, the less I feel. The more I win, the weaker I grow. It's gone.

I feel rain. But it isn't rain. The sky isn't grey. Isn't blue. Isn't black. Isn't anything. Where is the sky? What it might have been, now drips from above - like paint on a canvas. It's falling apart. All of it.

Why do I bother? My wall of my strength is torn down, ripped asunder by catapults unseen. I crumble once again. I feel nothing. See nothing. Hear nothing. Deaf, dumb and mute - this place is empty and full. Standing and sitting between nowhere and everywhere, it cries silence and reaches without limbs. I cannot define what I cannot sense. It isn't gloom. It doesn't gleam. I feel something tugging at my sleeves, my very essence. It warns me. What is it? What is this feeling of utter inability, helplessness, impotence? It stifles my mind's screams and I come face to face with it's blank, ever-changing face: Dread.

If only I knew what this place was. If only I remembered. If only.


But I can't sit still and standing. I can't go screaming quietly into that dark day. I remember that I cannot see, my eyes useless. But I feel. Not with my hands, my skin - but with my mind. I feel this place around me. I feel it.

I forget the cold, burning pavement beneath my legs, it's jarring teeth that bit through my skin. I forget the chilling warmth that cleaved my soul. I forget the soft sky that dropped to earth. Past. I've left it behind.

I rise into the air. Between earth and sky. Between hell and heaven. Balance. I make my claim - It's mine. This idea is mine. It circles around me, and I around it. Leaving this body behind, I merge with the idea. We are one.

This place of thoughts, without feeling, had drained me. It draws us all. But we persevere. We persist. We prevail. As I leave the fluid of my mind, I remember my purpose; the goal. I remember the idea I now hold close. In this promised nowhere-land, beneath it's hard, inconsistent soil - it holds riches beyond your imagination. You need only look. I sit staring at this blank sheet, and gently put ink to paper.

It's cold.


Sunday, September 18, 2011



Gone and lost my way this long winter's day.

Honour affords no pay, so join the fray they would say, and I just might, I just may...

But the sun's hopeful ray fades only to grey, and no matter how far I stray, how hard they pray, I'll ne'er be able to stay.

The unknown holds its sway, no dismay, feelings to convey, I've naught for which to stay.

My mind in disarray, so far from the trail, some stains won't wash away.



Tuesday, September 13, 2011


I had always been a deep sleeper, but not entirely unobservant. Heaving my heavy eyelids open, the first thing I saw was the rain on my window pane. I quickly looked over at my brother's bed. Empty.

"Huh." I sighed. There'd been a thunderstorm.

I lay on my back a while. I didn't wanna go back to school. The second week of 4th grade was off to a rocky start, but at least it wasn't Monday anymore.

"Four more days til the weekend..." I thought, staring at the ceiling.

My bed and blanket was wrapped around me like a coccoon and I tried to roll back into the comforting warmth. Instead, I ended up rolling off the bed completely and hitting the floor, winding me as the air was driven from my lungs with a groan. I struggled to my feet, tending to my sore back and pulled on a pair of worn jeans and a Sex Pistols T-shirt. Groggily dragging myself into the bathroom, I finished washing up and slumped down the white carpeted stairs with only one thought on my mind: Breakfast. I walked past my parents bedroom, passing long enough to glimpse my baby brother sprawled all over their covers. Lucky bugger didn't need to get up and go to school. I kept going past the kitchen and into the living room.

My parents didn't even turn around to say 'good morning'. Odd. Instead, they were sitting on the edge of their seats on one of the sofas. Mum was close to tears; her face turned away and tucked into my dad's neck. Dad had his giant, tree-trunk arm gently wrapped around her - keeping her safe. Mum began to sob, and that didn't happen often. It was only then that I noticed the tele.

I slowly drew closer to the couches, careful not to make any noise. I let my hands slowly grasp the sofa's soft, supple leather and watched as a pair of jumbo jets flew dead into two towering sky-scrapers. Watched as infernos erupted and piercing screams rang out. Watched as clouds of smoke billowed from the two dying giants. Watched the ensuing chaos. The fear. The terror. The horror.

"Make it stop, Ollie. My god, why? Why?!" sobbed Mum into my dad's royal blue shirt. He said nothing - just held her closer, flinching each time the planes crashed and re-crashed, as the nauseating clips was played over and over.

Something yawned behind me and a small, dazed voice managed to say: "What movie are you guys watching?"

They finally turned around to look at us. "It's not a movie, baby. It's real." struggled Mum.

My eyes never left the screen.


It's been ten years. Ten long years since that day. Some of us remember where we were when it happened, some don't and some of us can never forget.

The opening ceremony of the 9/11 Memorial is a testament to that fact. The two cascading waterfalls, moulded into the once-lost footprints of the two towers, were visually stirring. The rebuilding of of one tower - as of yet not complete, even after ten years - kindles hope. And the aloud-reading of the victims' names lended an emotional hand to their families and friends.

However, when now-Mayor Michael Bloomberg said people should no longer refer to this place as "Ground Zero" because "that's in the past", I shuddered. Why? Why the hell shouldn't we call it that? Why the bloody hell should we forget that this was not a simple tragedy, nor a natural disaster, nor a tragic accident? This was pure, unmitigated evil. There is no other word for it.

Yes, this memorial now stands to commemorate the dead - but history knows no better commemoration than Justice herself in all her beautiful glory. I say, never forget what happened here. Never forget why these innocent people died. Never forget what we still fight for. Never.

Expunging the reason and the truth behind this beautiful testament, this magnificent memorial, is to forget our reason. To forget this reason - while hundreds of thousands Americans and Canadians continue to lay down their lives each day in chilling courage and bravery - is the true travesty. We can never allow this to happen. Never.

We are still neck-deep in this war. It is not over. Churchill didn't tour London during Hitler's blitz with a comforting hand, trying to brush the dirt and debris over the whole mess - he called for victory! Roosevelt didn't just pat the surviving troops on the back after the destruction at Pearl Harbour - he called for triumph! Finish and bring the boys home, I say. 9/11 must never cease to be a day of remembrance and empowerment. Never.

This war is not about gold. Not about god. Not about glory. Not about resources, faith or vengeance. It's about Justice - something we must remember.

A decade it's been now. History will never forget, just as America never has and never should. Never stop remembering. Never.


Tuesday, September 6, 2011

How Dumb I've Become

School's not cool. Whoever said that?
Must've been a fool, some smart-ass brat.
Books, studying and wide-eyed nights.
Already wishing for my own last rites.
Missing the summer, the clear warm days.
The good times, great times, now all a haze...
And yet here I lie, awaiting the sun.
To hear some black-tie tell me how dumb I've become.


Friday, September 2, 2011

Burns & Bruises

Her awkward, tiny steps down the street set her apart, but nobody bothers to notice. She passes in and out of our peripherals, like a blindspot we've grown accustomed to ignoring... to forgetting. Time has bent her now crooked back, weighed down under a lifetime of trial and tribulation. Drab, floor length skirts barely hide the worn sneakers that have taken her back and forth across the city a million times, and a million times again. She gathers her shoulders inside the frayed, royal blue cardigan, somehow drawing her arms further into its lengthy-sleeves - thin protection from a cold world. Thick, horn-rimmed bifocals sit perched on the bridge of her nose, but she keeps her eyes on the grey, unbiased ground in front of her.

When she does speak, her voice is thin and frail, yet with a lighter tone. Something that might have once held a music of its own - a symphony lost, a composer forgotten. She stumbles over her words, unsure of how much to say at any one time, as each trips out. It's not the language itself that's in short supply, but the confidence and poise. She doesn't care for it anymore though. It holds no meaning, no necessity for her. It has become but a means to an end - and not the end itself.

From a far land, she made the journey to this land of promise and dreams. She invested her hope in a new, better life for her and her family. One without political turmoil. Without social limit. Where the only limits to what you could achieve was what you could believe - and where, for once, what you believed could set you free.

Over 50 years later, she is alone. Her husband died long ago. Granted a small room in the basement of his house, she lives under her now wealthy, successful son - happy for his prosperity. She loves her quickly-growing grandson with all her heart, even as he makes his way to leave home. But she is alone. To everyone around, she has served her purpose: an archaic staircase for a machine that resorts to elevators. She is obsolete.

I see her now, as I leave the house to fetch the mail. She tends to the tiny garden with a giant house all to herself. A 9-5 housesitter. No friends - her family was the be-all, end-all of her life. She treks each day to her daughter's home, to take care of her younger grandchildren while she's at work. Nobody picks her up or offers her a ride - she does it willingly. Taking the same bus every morning. She lives for others, to feel needed, to escape her isolation.


Have you ever seen loneliness?

Humanity. Unlike any other form of life on the face of the earth in one, single, unique respect: our ability to communicate.

We are social beings; creatures of communication. We thrive on interaction - from a smile and a laugh, to handshakes and sex. We need others. Others to care for and be cared by. To love and be loved. To understand and be understood. To lean on and be leaned on. To live. A life without that kind of connection, that kind of tie, that kind of bond... is to be without that which gives us our fruitful existence. It fulfills us in ways we can't imagine being without.

Try to imagine a world without any interaction. Where day and night pass like cars on a freeway - countless and meaningless. Where every hue of every colour in every tiny, natural detail was lost to the depths of your mind - passing each rational barrier and every logical strain. Why? Because there would be nobody to share it with. No basis upon which to think, to learn... to grow. And if we can't grow, we can't live.

No man is an island, true enough. There's a reason 'Solitary Confinement' is the next-to-last resort in federal penitentiaries. It can drive you insane: alone with your thoughts, bereft of all human contact. We cannot do without it. Like a drug, this connection has its highs and lows, bringing pleasure - but always with the risk of pain. And not all pains are burns and bruises.

As this connection grows stronger, we feel needed. And to be needed, in even the smallest way, is something each of us craves. We feel purpose. We feel motive. We feel important. It's true that our relationships can weaken us and expose our vulnerability, but they can do far more than that. Our resolve to remain in another's life, to help them, mend them and be with them can make us powerful in a world where Life's own crux eludes us.

"Our prime purpose in this life is to help others." - Dalai Lama


I grip the shifter and throw the car into 'reverse'. Looking over my shoulder, I slowly roll back down the road towards the old woman. She doesn't look up, keeping her steady pace on the pavement. She doesn't see the beautiful summer blossoms nor the colourful billboards up ahead. Doesn't hear the whistling wind nor my car's rumbling engine. Smell the freshly fallen rain nor the propane from my neighbor's BBQ.
I roll down the passenger window and lean towards the opening:

"Do you need a ride?"