Thursday, January 08, 2004
-excerpt from 'Fiesta' (The Sun Also Rises) by Ernest Hemingway
Been reading some Hemingway lately... both to keep my English level up (because there's a lot of bad English here in Japan) and to inspire me to write more. Even if I return home someday with only a fistful of dollars, I at least want to have a short book or novel written by then too.
Writing down anything in English has been quite therapeutic... lately, I've been having a re-occurring dream and I'm not sure what to make of it. Normally, I discount dreams as being rather useless, but given the fact that it is Biblical truth that God has used dreams to communicate to people before... makes me think twice before randomly dismissing it. It's pretty complex and I don't feel like writing down the entire dream sequence at the moment. All I'll say is that this is the key element in the dream:
A fishtank full of fish... dead fish.
I think the dream is making me moody, but I don't think my friends here in Japan know that. Call me half-stoic, half-introverted... I leave it up to people to find how I'm really feeling.
Sometimes, things like that are often (invisible).
'the otherside of 25'
lines of pain I pen, I write with regard
to the frequency which my heart and my soul are scarred
scratched far beneath the surface, it seems never safe
whatever land or place I travel, unhappiness always gives chase
a fatherless son since 11, friends never understood
their families were stable, surrounded by folks that were good
though mom worked hard to raise the necessary funds
I dreamed of old days, when Dad took me to the range to shoot guns
because in those memories I felt a father's care
his constant presence was love and my worth never unclear
but in a one parent house, what could I expect?
only son on his own, unintentional child of neglect
my mind struggles to grasp what was the divine plan
a mother can raise a child, but can't teach a boy to be a man.
now I'm 25, and people say I'm fully grown
but have I really changed, beyond the superficial zone?
bigger, taller, of course, went to school for a bit
got some pieces to a puzzle but none of them fit
look past the coat, the tie, and the suit
gaze into my eyes and see the entire empty truth
the grind of one life turns a small wheel
I'm sadder, not wiser, weary of the weight that I feel
the reservoir of my soul seems so often spent
my search for what's missing, a seemingly futile attempt
I admit, my wounds are easy to pass by
concealed to normal vision, visible only to the 3rd eye
people shake their heads, they don't see the stress
"Garrett's so sullen and strange, why is he always depressed?
He doesn't have cancer, isn't even deaf or blind
He walks on two legs, God gave him an un-handicapped mind
He needs to grow up, shutup and live life
He should buy a car, a home, get a good job and a wife."
I hear their words, but I never respond
my feelings are an ocean's depth to their shallow duck pond
the answer I give is a cold gaze submerged
the ice in my veins, a cacophonous funeral dirge
one whole life's discord giving my thoughts wing
look in my eyes, and these are the words that they sing.
"Don't judge my pain, until you taste death
when it stinks in your mouth and chokes out your breath
making you gag, gasp, stutter and stammer
the heartache of 'why?' pounding your soul like a hammer
your childhood ripped away rough by cruel fact
untimely passings holding dreams down to be hacked
no fount of wisdom, or mentors to guide
clouds of doubt to rain on you as you shiver outside
hollowness of silence your only redress
clumsy errands for closure tripping your steps
winds of circumstance stinging exposed eyes
the loneliness of your experience bleeding you dry
solitude wracking you broken at the seams
some nights sleepless because you fear to dream
and when you finally long just for a way to be free
then you'd tasted a sip of the cup handed over me."
hold back your platitudes, proverbs, and quips
my seas of despair still rage, unbound as years slip
so I clutch broken pieces, my father's God I beseech
hoping to heaven for some comfort as deep cries out to deep
on foreign shores, wordless, sentenced without plea
still quiet were the answers, soundless sighs in the breeze
the man I am now, was, or if, never became
25 and still just a boy, wounded soul gaping with pain.
Don't worry... I'm fine. I think.
A cool NY Times article on Lost&Founds in Japan that's not an exaggeration. Something I really dig about Japan: people are honest and polite like that. I dropped my wallet once while in a hurry at a train station and a nearby person picked it up, ran after me, and gave it back to me with the quickness.
Back home in the States, you can bet folks would take my wallet and run the OTHER direction.
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