31 October 2006

All Hallow's Eve

I forget if technically All Hallow's Eve is the night before Halloween, or it is just the old way of saying Halloween. I know that Samhain is supposed to be the night before Halloween (or right at midnight the day of Halloween). In any event, I mostly enjoy the day/days for the old Charlie Brown special and the candy. I have enough people gunning for my soul a costume would not help much. I know one of the last times I dressed up (and this was years and years ago, back when I was waiting tables), I wore some fangs, got all pale and put on my three piece suit and called myself a 'Corporate Bloodsucker'. Of course, when I was helping run a Live Action Roleplaying game, the Crossroads, we had an event Halloween weekend, so I guess I was in costume all weekend (but I was NPCing, so I was in multiple costumes). Anyway, for those of you that really enjoy the holiday (or have enjoyed already), I hope you have a good one. I am probably going to watch 'House' and read, and get rested for my 12 hour drive tomorrow to Destin, Fl.


30 October 2006

Commentaries On The Burden Of War

This is technically a war poem, but more a comment on war poetry. I meant for it to start out a little light but realized the subject matter would not let me. Still, I think it is one of my more unusual writings as it is also a reference work to others. Not that it is a contest, but I do challenge you to see how many writers I reference and whom, (not including myself, for I do) in slight homage to 'A Fable For Critics' by James Russell Lowell. Some of the writers I reference should be easy, others not so obvious.

'Commentaries on the Burden of War'

"You may not be interested in war, but war is interested in you." -- Leon Trotsky

War is kind.
Weep not maiden, war is kind
Impined the war correspondent
Despondent for his lack of mettle
But emboldened to admit
He knew the horror of battle,
Watching from afar so he
Could comfort the living on
How war is so kind.

Honor and glory beckons.
The cause is just, therefore
Duty whispers 'lo' to the soldier
So he can volunteer
For daring deeds in
The arms of death.
He turns his back on wisdom
And gives one gallant gush,
All the while whispering 'I can'.

Riding into a valley of hell
Against those most terrifying odds.
They faced their foe undaunted,
But do they wonder
Should they falter and run... no!
The day will be theirs
For war is kind, so kind
That poets will laud them
Whilst they die in droves.

I wonder if the poets knew
What sort of burden was created,
This image the soldiers
Had to face
Generation after generation gone.
Inspired by words of those
Who never faced death's rendezvous.

He loved his duty and honor
To fight in one more just war
In order to be a noble man
So he could face his love,
Show her how much he cared.
Still, she took comfort
That he loved her so very much,
And yet, in the end...
He loved his honor more.

Dank trenches in Flanders fields,
Many await a gruesome end
Yet espousing the virtues of wars past.
Pressed against the walls, waiting to
Charge into that deadly space,
Resolving to stop the other
For they know their duty;
Even if the world abandons reason,
They stand firm and simply die.

An outpost in the deep of dark
Laden with the blood of the fallen
Is forgotten except for a few.
Those who scratched and clawed
At the face of death,
Watching their comrades fall
In a brief terrible moment.
Not for glory, nor for new lands
Only because someone said 'go'.

I dream of those honored dead
And hope they forgive us our
Need to comment and posture
On the soldier's burden.
One that we have not faced;
One we should never want to.
I dream of remembrance...

From bloodied creeks and streams at
Sharpsburg and Bull Run,
To sieges at Calais and Hue,
I long for an absolution
In the Teutonburg forest,
At the fall of Vera Cruz,
The terror of Gallipoli,
And the madness of Verdun.
It will never come...

War is kind.
If she will not weep,
Perhaps I shall.
For it will not end.
The ruin we have created
Cannot end.


An Echo

Sometimes you just have to write without thinking, only listening to the voice of your heart, and the voices of those who cannot speak.


Can I still hope?

Hands reaching to others
Smiling laughing caring
Gentle words...
Simple endearments...
An echo from a millenia gone.

Can I even see?

Sentiments lost amid posturing
Sneering biting unmoving
Harsh doublespeak...
Empty platitudes...
A spin of a sound infecting today.

Will it even matter?

Shadows occluding the numbers
Bleeding burning gone
Feigned indignance...
Shifting all blame...
A ruin of what has been
And may ever be.

Can anyone see?


29 October 2006

Quote Me Or Not

I find many a quotation interesting (as one might have guessed from the quote that highlights the title of my blog), but I have always been amused by the particular dichotomy of Ralph Waldo Emerson and his writings. The following quotes about quotations I have always found amusing, only because they were written by the same author, the aforementioned Emerson.

'I hate quotations. Tell me what you know.'

'By necessity, by proclivity, and by delight, we all quote. '

'Next to the originator of a good sentence is the first quoter of it.'

Still, I have always found that a quotation is useful in the proper context of course, and I am sure I have taken Emerson out of context, but ole' Ralph has always had a duality to his thoughts (like many writers) for he was a staunch abolitionist and yet referred to Native Americans as the 'noble savage'(a mentality sadly common in the 19th century). Anyway, just an amusing thought (or series of thoughts) early in the 'morn.

And for those of you out haunting your haunts or crawling the night away this Halloween weekend (as it is just about time to close down many of those haunts, except perhaps on the West Coast, do be safe and save some ghoulish behavior for the actual holiday on Tuesday (but only a little I suspect since most of us have work the next day... or in my case, a 12 hour drive to work for the weekend :). Anyway, take care and enjoy the extra hour of sleep granted by 'falling back'.


28 October 2006

A Good Heart And Right Action

Just some random notes and thoughts from a rambling insomniac early in the morn (I'd say morning light, but it is still dark out, and I'd have to type for a few hours for morning light).

Shakespeare wrote 'Nothing is good or bad, only thinking makes it so.' While Shakespeare's sentiments do sound good (and I admit taken way out of context), it is hard to accept our thoughts cause good and evil. Our decision, perhaps, which I suppose is an extension of thought, play the ultimate part in goodness and right action. We will choose to do what we think is good for us, or we will not. Of course, that is the problem, what might be good for us could be bad and what we might even think is right could actually be wrong. And then you have the problem of a good action/intention having catastrophic effects. Now, I was raised to understand that this is not true. The whole tenet of Christ's (not necessarily current Christian thought) philosophy hinges on the fact that doing good for its own sake will always prosper. Let us say you help a person out that then decides to use the money on an addiction (pick your poison) and then winds up hurting or killing someone because of their addiction. Was good done for its sake? And if you found out what had happened, would you do it again? The idea itself was right but the end was not.

Then the question is asked, what if not doing good, in fact, allowing the ends to justify the means, results in goodness? One might think that this action cannot really be random and is self-serving, and therefore is not for its own sake. I guess at least that person is still doing something.

I suppose, in the end, the worst thing is inaction. Edmund Burke commented, 'The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.' An observation applicable to any time. This world has become so apathetic and uninterested that most people would rather do nothing. Perhaps that is the case mostly in the West, and many times in my case. At least I try and understand the past and the present and through it, maybe understand the future. Still, I feel that is my excuse and/or justification to observe and not act. Perhaps that makes me even worse than being apathetic. I am informed and still do not act in a manner I should or at the least, I would like. Unlike most academics, who have a tendency to preen and posture while feeling that their comments alone mean that they have acted, I know what I am not doing is wrong.

So here I am, discussing goodness and my own guilt at not doing more than I have done, which is to say not much more than writing and trying to understand cause and effect, action, reaction and inaction. Has anything I have said changed anything? Or am I like the ones I have called out, hoping that my words alone constitute some sort of right action on my part? Is having the right heart enough? As always, I have too many questions and not enough answers. I hope, at least, I am asking the right questions.


27 October 2006

Chasing Twilight

Sometimes I like to write sequels in poems, mostly because I have changed, for good or ill, since the last iteration of the poem. (which in the case of these two is about 3 years and some change apart, more than enough time to warrant a sequel). In the following pieces, I am not sure how much I have changed, and I admit that I wrote the sequel to the first poem more for effect due to being a little inspired by the sun setting in the Indian Ocean on the western coast of Australia. Also, the poems vary in style... the latter has some rhyme structure, but I do not rhyme very well. Still, for some reason, I felt I needed to utilize such structure in the poem. Anyway, do enjoy and have a great weekend.

'The Long Twilight'

Dreaming of worlds that never were
Longing for nights that might have been
These are the thoughts and memories
Of nothing left to give

I am haunted by regret...

Knowing the truth of things not said
Seeking the past of futures dayI
t does not calm the sorrow
Of anything that could remain

I am chased by remorse...

Holding on beyond the night
Smoldering within fragments of dreams
These are the visions and remnants
Of mornings borne through pain

I am battered by pride...

Wondering about what will not mend
Listening for what will never answer
Those are the faces and forms
Of what has passed away

I am haunted...

Not hating nor loving
Hearing but not listening
Languishing in twilight
Lost in a world of dreams.

'Twilight Revisited'

'Is a dream a lie that don't come true, or is it something worse?' --- Bruce Springsteen, The River

I know the solace of regret...

Torn by choices from distant days
Sensing what could have been forlorn
Laid bare in full view
Of the nebulous light of 'morn.

I yearn for a memory of ignorance...

Borne from remnants of desire
Yielding to a truth that would not stay
Lost in the sorrow of desolation
Caressed by the shadows of a fading day.

I seek the embrace of absolution...

Coursing through veins of doubt
Removed from this soul's gentle light
Welcomed ever so warmly
Into the impending wasteland of the night.

I am haunted by twilight...
Forever trapped in my world of dreams.


26 October 2006

Migration and Election Factors

I originally thought about discussing the problems with migration and immigration in the United States (and the particularly strange laws about to be passed in one of the suburbs locally that will make it nearly impossible for an illegal immigrant to live or work in the suburb), but after a thinking about things on my trip back from Wal-Mart (the new melting pots in America), I thought I would ease off the immigration issue some and discuss the coming elections here in Texas, for that is my perspective; however, the heart of the matter is voting in general and how we ignore it, or do not.

First off, I was strangely comforted by the fact that as I drove off in the parking lot of my local Wal-Mart, I heard several languages being spoken, primarily Spanish, as this Wal-Mart resides in a part of Irving that is predominately Hispanic. Most of the time I do not care, as I am not wasting much gas in getting to this Wal-Mart. At first, I thought of the large numbers of probably illegals just in the parking lot alone, but then reminded myself we are a nation of illegals in many ways, as I am sure my Native American cousins (I'm around 40 percent Cherokee... I know it does not show) would agree. Still, I welcome most immigrants, but I would like for them to at least try and become residents and citizens. It can be done... I have two neighbors who have done it (and ironically, they somewhat turn their noses down to illegals who don't make an effort to become citizens), and know others who have. I understand that it can be terribly frustrating for them, but if they truly want the best for them and their families, should they not attempt to become citizens of the country that they effectively call home? I know I would, even with language and/or cultural barriers. How does this relate to voting, one might ask? Aside from the citizenship issue, I'm not sure. I do get tangential some times and wish to discuss a couple of subjects at once. This is one of those times, so do bear with me.

The thought process then led to the current elections and voting and how I have discussed with many an individual the responsibilities of good citizenship in this country. Primarily, if you can vote, do. To me, this gives you the right to voice your concerns. Yes, I know the electoral process is antiquated to say the least. I actually prefer the proportional electorate, similar to the German system where if a candidate wins 43% of the vote, they get 43% of the electoral vote... crazy, I know. Colorado tried to pass such a measure in '04, but failed. Anyway, I have had plenty of political discussions regarding our leaders and government, and I would take the time to ask if said person voted. More often than not, the response was no. I would then quickly end the discussion, for I feel if you do not take the time to vote, to participate in the electoral process (for good or ill), then you really have no cause to complain. Voting is incredibly easy these days. If you do not vote and have the ability to, then I think you demean your own citizenship and those who have fought and died for that right to vote. Again, simply my thought on the matter.

Oh, btw, for those of you that endured the Ventura years in Minnesota, an Independent might win in Texas, whether it is the Grandma or Kinky remains to be seen. Alas, Rick Perry will probably win thanks to these two, but I would not mind seeing something different here. (Oh, and for those of you that only know Texas' recent political history, Texas has always been traditionally a Democratic state. Only in recent years has it become overwhelmingly Republican).

One final attempt at waxing anecdotal and I will leave you good people: When I voted, the city of Euless was using a prototype electronic voting system, since the country is supposed to be all electronic by the '08 elections. I was slightly amused since I had just seen Man of the Year (if you have seen it, then you understand my amusement). When I pointed out my amusement to the voting officials, they were less amused.


25 October 2006

Universal Reflection

I have always been intrigued by the concept of the idea that the universe is reflected in us, and can be seen in the simple things, such as the reflection of light in a person's eyes and how one can see (or in some cases not see) and understand the past, present and future with but a glance. It does not happen much, alas, but when it does, it is inspiring. The following piece is a recent one (a couple of months old I think), inspired by merely the glint in a soul's eyes.


All that ever mattered...

This wonder ablaze...
Born in hearts of stars
Connected through the ebb and flow
Of moments remembered
Within the light of time.

All that could be known...

These thoughts consumed...
Lost in the instant of revelation
Welcomed by the emotion and ecstasy
Of tomorrows unbound,
Seeking the promise of time.

All that we are...

This vision awakened...
Born in hearts of stars
Made manifest in the anticipation
Of such a welcoming glow,
Reflected in the light of your eyes.


24 October 2006


This poem is a continuation of the previous post, but it is not truly necessary to read the one to understand the other (though, obviously, I would encourage it :). I actually wrote this piece right after the Passover bombings in Israel in 2002... and considering how things have gone since then, not much has changed.


One more death...
A sacrifice on the altars of hate.
More blood upon the hands of the world,
Another death will be enough.

What is one more death...
To avenge the honor of nations
To quell the cries of anguished souls?
A life is extinguished,
Is their death enough?

Trapped in a circle of death...
Altars stained by the sacrifice of blood.
A world cannot suffer so many tears.
One more death will be enough.

Our world is a ruin...
Led by those who believe a death will be enough.


One Life At A Time

In the TV show Babylon 5, a phrase is tossed about by numerous characters but mostly espoused by the Minbari, 'Some must be sacrificed for all to be saved.', while the Talmud says that 'He who saves one life saves the world entire.' (and I realize I might be paraphrasing that one, but the essence of it is correct). Both, to me, are a paradox of wisdom, though I am sure I might raise an eyebrow or two comparing Babylon 5 to Judaism, but I have seen stranger comparisons. Anyway, that is not the issue at hand, it is the question of when is it ok to sacrifice one for many or vice versa? The essence of true compassion is to save others, but is it any less compassionate to let others be sacrificed in order to save more? Of course, I am in no position or career that involves the saving of lives or ordering the deaths of others in some cause, but I do ponder such things as one in a free society should. And I ponder such questions to you, gentle readers.

Therefore, what does one do when faces with such things? Or what does one do that cannot affect any outcome? But, what would you do? Would you trade one life for thousands, or a thousand for one? Millions for billions? Is death for life, or the promise of life (say, in the case of genetic experimentation) ever a fair trade? Where does ethics end and pragmatism begin? And I do assure you, I understand necessity and pragmatism for I do live in this world. In the past, most would never ask such questions, for the answers are apparent in history and in the history of politics. Indeed, some philosophy would agree with the trade of death for life. But, will it ever be enough? Can we ever evolve to a consciousness where in order to preserve life we do not have to extinguish it?

Overall, I am not being too practical, but one has to think such things, or at least reiterate them from time to time.


Night Train To Perth

I guess I will continue a common thread, posting some of my work from when I was in Australia and/or my Australia-related poems. I will say, the last time I was in that country I composed some of (what I feel) my better stuff. The following is another experiment in still, using similar lines but changing the order of the lines... I think there is a technical term to the form. Me, I just like the way it felt.

'Night Train to Perth'

Note: The Indian Pacific is one of the great train journeys in the world, taking 72 hours to get from Sydney to Perth. I started the journey at the midway point, in Adelaide(only a mere 36 hour journey from there ). I wrote this as darkness descended upon the Nullabor plain, one of the emptiest places in the world. I did in fact do this journey twice, though I left from Kalgoorlie (12 hours from Perth) and went all the way through to Sydney, a scant 60 hours later. I then boarded another train for a 14 hour journey to Byron Bay. But what a way to travel...

Beneath the glow of crimson skies,
The sound of metallic thunder rolls.
While cities fade into deepening shadow,
The future is all the journey knows.

Shadow engulfs the surrounding plains,
Within the wonder of starry skies;
Metallic thunder closing all around,
While onward still the journey lies.

Amidst the beauty of such a night,
This journey knows it cannot die.
The sound of metallic thunder rolls,
Beneath the calm of midnight skies.


23 October 2006

Profiles In Motion

Last time I was in Sydney (boy I make that sound like I go there a lot, only twice, 12 years apart), I traveled extensively by mass transit when I was not hoofing it. The place I was staying was only about 3 miles from Downtown, so it was a long walk, but not annoyingly so. Depending on traffic in Sydney's old winding streets, walking was sometimes easier. Also, I could take the train, but that was only so effective as well. Anyway, I hopped onto a bus one busy afternoon and winded my way to town and noticed the blurred reflection of the various persons getting on and off the bus. It struck me as a metaphor for how we deal with each other and the business of our lives.

The poem below is the result of such inspiration and I should point out is pretty stream of consciousness and I am aware of the lack of punctuation. I simply felt the style was right for what I was seeing.

'Profiles In Motion'

Are we all the same
So long as we are in motion?

Glances traversing sensing movement aside
Rushing into chaotic din within without
Seeing briefly through an instant
Blurred crowds pushing reacting tearing
Overwhelmed... hopes thrown askance
By the restless tide.

Do they know
What we become in motion?

Faces lost details forgotten trapped
Locked away in limbo recall pointless
Glancing questions vacant answers
Hollowed racing amidst shadows of time
Contained... lives held down
Where concrete and steel collide.

Are we aware
This price of being in motion?

Forms fuse merge blank forced
Charging leading through mindless clutter
Losing stripped vestige of souls
Maddened frenetic pace fraught
Burdened... in the guilt of days
Made manifest by routine.

They all drift away
The longer I stay in motion.


The Kingdom Of The Blind

The original intro for this piece (on another writing site) read 'We are all to blame for the world we have created...'. When you continue to do 'the necessary thing' instead of 'the right thing', sometimes, tomorrow may never come.

'The Kingdom of the Blind'

In the morrow, we die.

We do what must be done.
Right and wrong made irrelevant,
Drowned in the seas of our blood.
We are beyond even vengeance;
Only victory remains.

When they die, we will not care.

What is done is done.
Their lives made irrelevant,
Crushed by the force or our will.
We are beyond even redemption;
Only the end remains.

In the morrow, they will die.

They do what must be done.
We made right and wrong irrelevant,
Fueled by the fires of our cause.
We are beyond even life;
Only death remains.

The morrow, it will not come;
For we are already dead.


Mundane Things

I try not to normally post mundane complaints and aches, but man am I sore. Between loading and unloading (which I still need to do) hundreds of pounds worth of anime-style swords and junk from my upstairs apartment, the drive to and from Houston, loading and unloading at a convention center that did not have enough carts for dealers, a broken dollie (thanks to the hundreds of pounds of anime swords), and it being a relatively long walk from the exhibit hall to the docks, and not to mention the actual work at the convention, I put in far too many hours it seemed like. Thank goodness the compensation is always fair. Well, I'm still scarred from sorting Yaoi until 3 am on Friday night/Saturday morning, for some of it was terribly explicit. If you know what Yaoi is, then you understand, and you probably also understand why it was necessary to get the Yaoi to the people as it is incredibly popular. Anyway, with all of that, I still had a nice time at the show, just more bruises, nicks, cuts and muscle pulls to show for it than normal. On the other hand, I am far better off than one dealer who gave himself a terrible scalp wound and had to be rushed to the hospital when he hit his head on his trailer.

Ok, I will get back to other things later in the day.



Just a personal aside: Forgive my brevity as I just returned from OniCon (as some might notice it disappeared from my schedule, and it was a long, but mostly fruitful adventure), but I shall attempt to be far more cognitive and perhaps loquacious tomorrow...er, um... today :) so I leave you with another older piece, but one that has a slight change in style but still covers many of the philosophical issues earlier in my blog, and has a slight romantic side to it.


A trillion voices call into the void of forever
Bound in a terrible though blissful illusion,
Embraced by a splendid hope
For the now to become unending tomorrow.

At the edge of this darkness I wait,
Seeking the fulfillment of a million yesterdays,
Tempered with cold reality
That my vanity might yet be a waking dream.

Is it eternal?
Tell me all we longed for will not fade.

Beyond the veil of starlight she holds fast,
Caught in a torrent of fragments of today,
Fueled by such enduring faith
In the remarkable wonder so commonly known.

What awaits in the void of forever?
Held in place through such clever illusion,
Made possible by one ideal,
Our greatest gift, this capacity for love.

Is this eternal?


19 October 2006

False Gods

This is a direct result of the previous post, so do have a look if you would like, or not too, whatever makes you comfortable. I have always had an interest in religious/spiritual history, but organized religion and the zealotry that has resulted because of it has always hurt me. It is a terrible thing to see what has been perpetrated, rightly or wrongly, in the name of a god. The tragedy is that we can make our own decisions instead of being blinded by submitting to the will of black-hearted gods and men... but many of us do not. Many still submit to what is clearly a primitive and outmoded way of thinking, or lack of thinking as it has turned out. To that end, I reject such gods. For gods that allow what has been allowed in their name are not deserving of being called 'God'.

'False Gods'

Their love was not enough
Their deaths a rationale.
You were blinded by adulation,
Buoyed from their deeds in your name.
Their joy had to be tempered
With your zeal for fire and sword.
Their love could never be enough,
Unless they all loved you.

Their deaths were your price,
For their idea of your love.
They were deceived by false hope,
Fueling their desire for deeds in your name.
Your anger was made manifest
In the fire within their eyes.
Their deaths would be enough,
Since they would not love you.

How many dead?
Shall I count the graves?
How many lives is their love worth?

Their hopes you have borne,
To make real horrific ideals.
You craved their adoration,
Praising deeds conducted in your name.
This madness you have created
With their zeal for fire and sword,
You believed would be enough
To make them all love you.

My love was not enough
To embrace the idea of your love.
I am hardened by cold facts
Of the deeds allowed in your name.
My joy comes in the rejection,
Of your zeal for fire and sword.
Perhaps you will take my life,
But you will never have my love.

How many dead?
Shall we count the graves?
How many lives is your love worth?


18 October 2006

No Easy Answers

I always seem to be in a conundrum about something. Most of the time, it is rather mundane, simply deciding what I might eat this evening, or what book I might read before I go to sleep. Other times, it is more serious, and I suppose this evening would be one of those nights. I wonder often about our ability to know right from wrong, what makes us an ethical person, what drives us to slaughter in the name of well... anything. I want to ask these hard questions, and I know in the end, no easy answers come to me. Of course, I think many of use who do ask these questions find an answer, but find it is either too idealistic in one extreme, or too pragmatic in the other. Most compromise answers tend to enrage either side and can leave one no better, sometimes worse, than before.

So it is with me. I understand that war can be a necessary evil, but I am certainly against it in principle. I understand that every nation has the right to defend itself from harm, but where does defense end and theology (or ideology) begin? (or vice versa, perhaps) We have seen the rise of sectarian violence in recent weeks, months and years in many parts of the world, but it has been with us so long as people have been deciding Baal was better than Elohim or that Isis was far cooler than Ishtar or Astarte. Indeed, killing each other is humanity's number one or two favorite pastime, depending on who you ask (sex being the other). And for what? Well, far too many things to get into, but we all have our favorites: god, country, passion, fun, money or all of the above. Does it really matter why we kill? To me, it should only matter that we do; however, my own passions and patriotism have gotten the better of me, and while my idealism says 'stop', my pragmatism tells me 'they have it coming'. Maybe they do, or maybe, as Clint Eastwood puts it so pointedly in Unforgiven: 'Kid, we all have it coming.' I would rather not endorse that thought, yet because I am an American, do I deserve death as much as anyone else does?

I always liked to think we were born with the ability to determine right from wrong, that we did not need a holy ethics professor to tell us what should be inherent in our nature. Unfortunately, as I see more and more degradations in whatever name we choose to invoke, I find this is not the case. I suppose I should know better. I have read enough history to confirm my questions, to give me the answers. I suppose I simply do not like them.

One day, I suspect there will be a reckoning for all that we have done, in this life or some other. I hope it is not so. I would like to think we could reach out to the stars and create a destiny beyond this small world. Until the killing stops, until our bloodlust and zealotry is satiated, this world will be all we know.


The 100

Sorry, no room for another 4300 :) (little joke for those who have seen The 4400)

As seems commonplace on blogs and other mediums, (I did something similar in my old journal) I have decided to give my many fans (crickets chirping in the distance) a number of things about me that are completely unremarkable but possibly interesting for those that find such things interesting. I have to admit I am a fan of such lists, so I give you such a list. Since 100 or so seems to be the appropriate number, (I suppose I could have waited to my 100th post, but I decided to get this out of the way) here are 100 things you should or should not know about me.

1. I'm left-handed (for the most part)
2. I have horrible handwriting, even when printing. You don't want to see my cursive (I haven't written in cursive in I don't know how long)
3. The first football game I remember is Super Bowl X (Dallas-Pittsburgh, 1976)
4. Reportedly, my third and fourth words were 'Go Cowboys!'.
5. The first movie I remember seeing was 'Star Wars', though I think my parents took me to see both 'The Muppet Movie' and 'Rocky' before that.
6. The first movie that gave me nightmares was 'Alien' (I was 6).
7. My favorite movie of all time is 'The Empire Strikes Back.'
8. My favorite book of all time is 'The Stand' by Stephen King, followed closely by 'The Guns of the South' by Harry Turtledove.
9. My favorite non-fiction book is 'In the Wake of the Plague: The Black Death and the World it Made' by Norman F. Cantor
10. Though I love medieval history, I am really unfocused, studying plague history, religious history (both of which do crossover into medieval, true), and military history.
11. I have a minor in Space Science and were I not math-illiterate, I would have gone into the sciences.
12. I love maps (which translated into a Geography minor).
13. I enjoy politics, but never had the stomach to get into it, aside from a term in the Student Senate in college.
14. I have been behind the Iron Curtain, but just barely, mere months before it all collapsed.
15. The best museum I have ever been to is the Hermitage in what was then Leningrad (I've never been to Paris, so I can't say the Louvre, regardless of reputation).
16. I have never been to Western Europe (unless you count 2 days in Finland to wind up my trip to Eastern Europe).
17. I have traveled to and/or through every state in the contiguous USA except Kentucky and Maine.
18. Though there was a great deal of anti-American sentiment the second time I was there, a part of my heart will always belong in Australia.
19. My ideal retirement spot is a stretch of coastline in South-West Australia.
20. I have spent almost three consecutive days on a train. (the India-Pacific between Sydney and Perth)
21. I have had my car searched for drugs at a Canadian border crossing (they thought I was smuggling pot from Mexico because of my Texas plates).
22. I have difficulty with the smell of tobacco (maybe a mild allergy perhaps).
23. I've lived in my car.
24. I waited tables for almost 2 years.
25. I have a fondness for theater, having acted, directed, produced and pretty much did everything at one point except costume design.
26. Before I sold anime stuff, I helped my family sell sports cards.
27. I was married for about 5 years once.
28. I've now been divorced for about 5 years.
29. I prefer the term 'certified pre-owned'. Sounds more official.
30. I taught myself to read at age 3 (thank you Sesame Street)
31. I didn't write my first short story or poem until I was 17.
32. I won an award (the National Association of Children's Bookwriters or something like that) for my first short story... which looking back, wasn't all that good.
33. I am my worst critic, as most writers are.
34. I don't like to use the word 'believe' or 'belief'. To me it is the first step to fanaticism. I would rather use the word 'think' or 'thought'.
35. I grew up Independent Baptist (hence my views on 'belief').
36. My favorite television show is still 'Babylon 5'.
37. Growing up, my favorite show was 'Star Trek', old and TNG.
38. I love roleplaying games and used to game constantly.
39. My favorite song of all time is 'Piano Man' by Billy Joel.
40. My second favorite song is 'Blue Eyes' by Elton John.
41. I have seen them both in concert separately and together.
42. I wish I could have seen Johnny Cash in concert.
43. My favorite concert is easily Billy Joel/Elton John (at Texas Stadium, April 1995).
44. My favorite musical/play is 'Phantom of the Opera'.
45. I love quotations.
46. I grew up a giant comic fan, and still read them now and then.
47. My favorite comic story is 'Batman: The Dark Knight Returns' by Frank Miller.
48. I still prefer Superman over Batman, but only slightly.
49. My favorite roleplaying game is 'Star Wars' (shocking, I know)
50. I have been roleplaying (though mostly game mastering) for almost 20 years now. 2007 will mark my 20th year.
51. My favorite non-Star Wars/Lord of the Rings movie is 'Almost Famous' (I prefer the Director's cut called 'Untitled'.
52. My favorite album (what not a favorite MP3 playlist?... what is this word, album?) is 'American IV: The Man Comes Around' by Johnny Cash.
53. I am both a cat and dog person.
54. I have owned more cats and dogs than I can count.
55. Cats, even strays, like to hang around me.
56. I am considered depressed, but not bi-polar.
57. I have a large number of siblings, and the oldest.
58. I lead a very parenthetical life (really, it's true).
59. I used to fence, preferring foil and sabre over epee.
60. If I had a philosophy, I think it would be deistic multi-dimensional reincarnationist. It worked from the Minbari (from 'Babylon 5'), though deism is more 18th century Enlightenment than late 20th century science fiction.
61. I understand the difference between the Jesus of history and the Jesus of faith.
62. While I feel we soften words too much and argue about semantics, I am still far too diplomatic for my own good.
63. That being said, I have found it hard to be diplomatic when it counted most.
64. If I could drop everything and go 'Out There' (out there being space and beyond), I would.
65. While I prefer the Jedi Code, the Sith dress better (and I prefer darker colors myself).
66. I wear sandals whenever I can, meaning I've worn socks twice in the past 2 calendar years (which you can do in Texas, even in winter).
67. The last time I wore tennis shoes regularly was on my last trip to Australia. Unless you are on a beach, it is really, really hard to hike in sandals.
68. I hate wearing blue jeans... shorts and slacks (usually khakis) for me.
69. Even though I love Australia and grew up in the D/FW area, I despise the heat.
70. I much prefer the cold, even if it means I might have to put on socks.
71. My eyes sometimes change color, but they are mostly blue (usually a light blue, but sometimes dark, sometimes a dark green, occasionally gray).
72. I lettered in varsity basketball in high school.
73. I have had three excruciating surgeries, two of them neurosurgeries.
74. The first neurosurgery saved my life. The second replaced the right half of my forehead with plastic (this happened over 20 years ago, when I was 10).
75. Because of said surgeries, I have failed three military physicals, the only thing that ever kept me from serving my country (though it was a near thing the last time).
76. It also kept me from playing football.
77. 'The Imperial March' is one of the great instrumental themes of all time.
78. I have had season tickets twice to the Cowboys and three times to the Rangers, all in years they stunk.
79. And I gave up my seats the day Nolan Ryan pitched his last no-hitter so my brother could go to the game.
80. No matter how many times I hear it, the words, 'No Luke, I am your father', still sends chills up my spine.
81. I prefer the Bob Seger version of 'Turn the Page' over Metallica's version.
82. I agree with Dilbert in that when something like the Holodeck is available, civilization as we know it will end (if it doesn't before then).
83. Perhaps the best poem I've ever written is my least favorite to read... a piece I wrote on the 5th anniversary of my eldest brother's death.
84. I still have trouble talking to my Mom and my sisters about it, mostly for their sake.
85. I always wanted to be on 'Jeopardy'.
86. Though I love writing, I am not a very disciplined writer. Perhaps that is why I write so much poetry.
87. I have serious trouble rhyming.
88. While I love music, I cannot sing, except as part of a choral group.
89. My favorite comic strip was the always funny 'Bloom County'.
90. It's the one with Opus the Penguin.
91. While I enjoy the history of languages, I cannot, for the life of me, learn them. I am better at reading them, and even that is marginal.
92. I prefer a nice cabernet over white, perhaps a bottle of rose instead, but only at Italian restaurants :)
93. I love westerns and war movies, and most any historical movie. I tend to see them regardless of reviews.
94. My favorite westerns are 'Dances With Wolves' and 'The Outlaw Josey Wales'.
95. My favorite war films are 'Glory' and 'We Were Soldiers', though the first half of 'Full Metal Jacket' is phenomenal.
96. Arthur C. Clarke and Isaac Asimov were two of my big influences growing up, though my dad tried to steer me to Jack Vance.
97. Most days, I would rather have a nice conversation.
98. My mom always told me I could always 'catch more flies with honey than vinegar'.
99. Even if it annoys them, I always hold the door open for women (assuming I get to it in time). Simply the way I was raised.
100. I can't be anything more than I am at this moment, even if I do look to the future too much.

Well, this should cover it. Anything else I will probably get to eventually, or just ask. I might even give an answer that makes sense. :)


17 October 2006

Conversationally Speaking

I am always one that is interested in conversation, so long as it is not a one-sided conversation, then it becomes a monologue (for either party involved) and, unless you happen to be a great lecturer or public speaker, will end in boredom for one of the parties involved. I certainly have been on both ends of such conversation disasters, but nominally, it tends to be a rare thing, as I tend to be a conversational chameleon, moving from one conversation to the next with relative ease on a variety of subjects. This ability has served me well in the past, and it has caused some major issues too, but those are tales for another time.

I noticed when traveling abroad the variety and numbers of conversations I had. And, traveling alone and being an American, I tended to start a conversation with the random person in a hostel, on a beach, or most often, while traveling from point A to point B (but never from point B to point C... I refused as a point of pride, lol). What got me thinking was the nature and brevity of many of my conversations as I moved on to another destination, or those I spoke to either were moving on, annoyed with me, or were simply bored. I thought about what made me remember them and whether or not they would remember our words and time together. As a general rule, I suspect it was not the case. For my part, on my most recent trip, I remember dozens of snippets of dialogue, a few pertinent, memorable conversations, and one... one though so brief, I remember it as if I were still there. Five minutes, perhaps, but five minutes that set me thinking about this issue and later inspired me to write a rather stream of consciousness piece (and one of my few poems that does not capitalize at every line... one of my stranger quirks, but to me normally gives an even feel to a poem) that delves into the nature of our words and what we remember about them.

(incidentally, one thing I am doing is starting off with a cross-section of styles... which unfortunately means I will have to post a poem that rhymes soon... not my strong point at all)

'Quality of Conversation'

We speak exchanging pleasant
words and double meanings losing
steam at every nervous instant,
afraid to hear what we should
wondering if these voices are all we are
trapped in a space whose
walls confine yet cannot be contained.

A silent pause damnable tho'
welcome normal but hurtful,
momentum mired in what might
be a chance at deeper reflection
a connection incapable of emerging
strains the borders of our tension
sending the heart and soul into a pensive stall.

Opposing forces prey upon us
noisy frantic pulling all around
fragments of obligation call to our rest,
yet reasonable inherent possibility
will be partially shuffled low
as what remains of these thoughts
dissolve and scatter in the full light of day.

Time slips into the present...
hoping I can remember if you remember me.


16 October 2006

The Other Side Of War

Aside from writing the usual catharsis-laden poems that involve romance, anxiety, love, loss, and emotion, I have written more than a few political/war poems. In all of them, I seek to understand the only side of war that matters: the dead. Who wins, who loses is irrelevant, even though I understand much about war from a pragmatic view. All that matters is that war comes to an end... and the dead know this better than anyone.

'The Other Side of War'

Only the dead have seen the end of war - Plato

Rays of sunlight obscured by ashen clouds,
Nothing left for the world to warm.
Suffering, mangled forms battered into dust,
Resolve and spirit crushed by steel and fire.
They wait for the shadows to fade...
They all wait, but it does not come.
It does not end.

Torrents of blood drenched by driving rain,
Scoured raw through a cleansing storm.
Fragmenting, restless thoughts carried away,
Caught upon the edge of razor and bayonet.
They hope for morning upon their face...
They all hope, yet morning does not come.
It will not end.

Memories of passion enveloped within happier days,
Clinging to a surface beneath the thunderous din.
An agonizing torment yielding no respite,
What awaits, a relief beyond the battle's cry.
They die reaching to the other side...
They all die, finally seeing the other side,
Finally knowing war's end.


The Quiet Earth

When a dream goes astray...

That was the original introduction to this poem (on my writing portfolio, I was allowed a little one line intro to each piece posted), and it still holds to some extent, for this poem is certainly about what was and would never be again. Not that this was a bad thing, but I needed to write it to close one door and move on completely. I think I had always pined away for what was even when I told myself I was not. Simple fact of human nature, I think. In any event, I had spent a long day upon a beach in Western Australia, just watching, listening, and I knew... I knew I could write it all away. I had reached a point where I could accept the present, and the past could simply be laid to rest. The end results were several poems that served to heal, but this one had an edge to it, I guess, that allowed me to finally understand how I go to that place, and how to move on. I admit, it is quite cynical, more so than I am these days, but I think have always been more cynical as a writer than as a person...

'The Quiet Earth'

In the depth of my heart,
I knew what had to be...

You believed in the best of me
Tho' saw the worst in my eyes;
I gave you little in return,
Save the burden of my pride.

Is that the price I would pay
To be damned by my love?

You wanted everything for me
Yet understood the pain borne within;
I held back all my fears,
'Til their fury could not be contained.

In the tumult of this life,
I could not compromise.

You remain in the depth of my heart
But lost to the quiet of my soul;
I, of course, cannot give anymore
For my world has grown far too cold.

So many years gone...
All that lingers is the silence.


15 October 2006

A Good Beginning To The Week

A Cowboys win helps the weekend end well, and a week begin well. Plus, the Eagles and Redskins lost (and the Redskins lost, at home, to Tennessee of all teams). Not a bad start, well, at least for my part of the country. Here's to hoping the rest of the week goes well as we prepare to go to Houston for OniCon and that everyone has a good week too.


Politicizing Vicitmization

Another sort-of reprint, but with some new material that covers some more recent issues.

These days, perception is everything, and if you can make yourself appear to be a victim, no matter how good or bad you are, then you have an edge. Of course, I speak of the recent crisis in Israel and Lebanon, but I could speak of many events, going back to the first televised crisis, the Vietnam conflict, a war not officially a war. Indeed, no conflict the United States has participated in since World War II has been officially a war. (and with the recent confrontations with North Korea, most people do not know that that particular conflict never ended. It has simply been a 53 year cease fire) Yet, the media gives conflicts names and they stick. The Iraq conflict, which has been over since 2003, is still called a war, when it should be called an occupation, for that is what it is. Anyone before the television era would call it that. Historically, that is what our presence in Iraq is. Semantics, alas, is in the eye of the propagator. I should point out I am not praising or denigrating the causes and outcomes of these conflicts, just their perception and usage in the public eye. And unfortunately, it has drawn me slightly off topic (which can almost guarantee I'm not using anyone else's words here). So, back to this issue of victimization that is tied into perception and semantics.

Of course, victims need imagery. The United States has benefited from imagery. I really need no further example than 'December 7, 1941, a date which will live in infamy'. FDR's words defined the quintessential victim response(in this case warranted, at least that is the general, and my view) and created imagery that united the country in moving toward war with Japan and Germany. Later, we have used other images to propel us into crisis and conflict, the most recent of course being the fall of the World Trade Center on 9/11. To me, these are examples of victimization being justified to an extent, though I am sure many would disagree with my latter example as opposed to the former. Again, not debating right or wrong, just how these words and images affect us.

Now, as information comes at us with such alacrity it would please the Flash, it is harder to judge the images as most people are simply overwhelmed by the imagery. How many websites and newspaper sites plus cable stations covered the recent crisis in Israel and Lebanon (and by association Iran and Syria) and how many places can one get information on this present North Korean crisis? Amazing, really, how quickly one could access this information and how quickly victims were created before we had even time to think about the crisis. This was especially true in the partisan news outlets and websites (not surprisingly). Hezbollah appeared the victim before the first shot was fired, regardless of whether Israel was justified or not. Personally, I felt Israel was and that Hezbollah used the victim card so much it ultimately allowed them to feel that they 'triumphed'. Indeed, the conflict amounted to little more than a standoff with too many casualties on both sides, but the perception that is being fed to the world at large is a victory for Hezbollah. If by victory they mean continuing to hold a country hostage through tacit approval by their masters in Iran and Syria, then ok, a victory. I am sure I am over simplifying things, and politicization is a tough issue, as is being victimized. On the other hand, I wish we could see things as they are, not what we are led to perceive.

The sad thing about this, and all such conflicts, is that the dead are still dead. And yes, fellow humans dying for what they 'believe' in is never a simple thing either. I just wish they'd stop believing and start thinking. Alas, in the era of instant judgment and gratification, I do not think we will see such a thing soon.


14 October 2006

A Little Exlpanation On The Convention Sidebar

Just a quick post here regarding the new addition to the sidebar (which I am thinking of adding more... I kind of like the feature). The convention schedule is not one I attend as a guest or an attendee (at least no one is calling me as a guest), but as a dealer in anime-related goods. I've been working with some friends for about two years traveling the country purveying fine anime stuff to fine anime fans, from the Pacific Northwest to the Emerald Coast (heading back there in less than a month... wow, what nice beaches that direction). So, if you have attended any of the big anime shows in the past 2 years around the country you might have run into me or my compatriots. We tend to sell a wide variety of items, from plush dolls (which I tend to sell more of), figures, gashapons(Japanese capsule toys), some minor cosplay items, some t-shirts, doujinshi (Japanese fan art) and anime-style swords, such as gunblades, keyblades and buster swords. For those of you who know the items, they warrant little explanation. For those who do not, suffice to say people love this stuff, and anime fans are definitely great to be around. They have so much energy it is amazing. Anyway, that's what the sidebar is for. If you happen to be at any of the shows listed, do stop by and say hi, and by all means, by as much product as possible :)


The Nevers That Consume Us

This actually started as an essay called 'I'll Never...' that quietly sits in my writing portfolio. This encompasses a few more issues and expounds upon said essay, but the heart of the essay remains...

I had been thinking about how we use the phrase, 'Never Settle for 'insert item here'', and how it seems like everyone tries to not settle, and yet a good portion of the time we do. It is not that we want to, but I think we often times get too tired of searching for whatever it is, and simply settle, one of the many 'Nevers' we often ignore. Pity, I think. Of course, this is truly the pot calling the kettle black, for I have settled when I did not need to, compromised unnecessarily and later realised that I damaged myself in doing so. When a person settles, whether it be in love, work, material goods, spirituality, it can lessen a person, making them more and more vulnerable on levels we might not be able to sense until we are well and truly trapped. Now, I understand the value of compromise as anyone else does, but a compromise that diminishes us is not a compromise at all. Indeed, marriage is all about compromise, but I think the mistake is letting one partner overwhelm the other until the compromises are completely empty and then love becomes compromised in the end. And it is tough to separate the two... never compromise your love. The only way to love is without compromise or condition, yet living with someone forces us to face conditions and compromises. And often times we say we will not do such a thing... yet it happens and one 'Never' consumes us, leading to others.

The 'never' of never settling can then become a 'never leave you', a 'never hurt you', 'never want another', 'never make the same mistakes' and so on... it can then become an exercise in saying those things to cover the most important one 'love'. Expressing love through negative articulation simply reduces the emotion itself. This is something I completely failed to understand while married. I kept repeating 'never leave you', 'never hurt you' until it replaced 'I love you' and diminished the impact of my love, which I thought was uncompromising, but found it lacking through my actions. That is the trap many of us face, I have faced, and likely will face... but to understand it allows one to recognise it, and perhaps find another way to deal with these 'nevers' that can consume us, for not having to say them might be as true as an expression of love as 'I love you.'


Our Unique Lineage

An incidental note: This is an older entry from my old journal, but it is consistent with the theme of the previous post, and is a base for most of my discussions of philosophy, of which there are many.

'We're all born as molecules in the hearts of a billion stars, molecules that do not understand politics, policies and differences. In a billion years we, foolish molecules forget who we are and where we came from. Through desperate acts of ego, we give ourselves names, fight over lines on maps, and pretend our light is better than everyone else's. The flame reminds us of the piece of those stars that live inside us. A spark that tells us: you should know better. The flame also reminds us that life is precious, as each flame is unique. When it goes out, it's gone forever. And there will never be another quite like it.' --Delenn, Babylon 5

Perhaps one might find it strange I often use quotes from sci fi shows/movies. (I suppose sci fi fans would not). Well, a lot of the more interesting philosophy I find stems from science fiction, and it is a part of who I am. I remember seeing the episode that references the above quote and it is consistent with the philosophy of the creator/writer of the show, a philosophy I understood to some extent at the time, but not completely until my myriad adventures that led to a sort of 'enlightenment' if you will. The road to enlightenment is a tale for another day, though many of these entries are pieces of that tale and The Long Road is my journey in hindsight and toward the future. But what I wish to comment on at this hour is the lineage we are ascribed to from the birth of the universe to our creation to our ending.

Every part of us is unique, a special creation from the dawn of time itself. The molecules within us descended from the beginning of the universe and that lineage is a part of us... is us. Our fire, our spark is a wondrous thing, but our cynicism and ego push that spark aside, trying to squash our unique heritage... that we are the universe made manifest. Even I forget it at times when I get angry, frustrated, pissed off, whatever, but I try and center my focus, reduce my anxiety by reaching out to my past, present and future... reaching into that unique spark that once fueled the heart of the universe. In my younger and sometimes rather recent days, I could not do it, and it ate me up inside. Now, I can let it go because we are one and we are unique at the same time.

I also would like to comment on the latter part of the quote, for it actually ends the episode and is quite moving in its context, but somewhat appropriate to the subject. I do not feel that our unique spark, when it ceases is gone forever, just changes states, moves on, and remains a part of the universe. Still, what we were in this life, in this moment, is unique and when that is gone, there will never be another just quite like you or me. The soul might remain, but the details will be different and keeps the universe fresh. So, hold on to that spark in whatever you endeavour, for the universe listens... and if it isn't true, it sure would be nice to think so.


Symphonies In Starlight

I have decided to comment on my attempt at understanding the universe at large. We all have ways of understanding and explaining our connection to the universe at large. Mine is through writing and oft times through poetic expression. Someone else's explanation may be in an artistic fashion, another through music, others through spirituality. Now, many do have trouble with this connection as a whole and live their whole lives without seeing it, much less understanding it. And once one understands, you can see it in others, or the lack thereof.

Of course, I am not out to make others understand, only report on a change of self so profound that in earlier days (maybe in my own earlier days as well), it would have been a religious transformation. Not being religious anymore, I found this understanding to be more of a philosophical change, an intellectual enlightenment that preceded a spiritual one. By a spiritual enlightenment, I do not mean it in the traditional sense, but more of an opening of my spirit that linked itself to my mind and body, creating a deeper understanding of where I have been, what I am, and where I am going. Before, I could not answer questions of myself essential for this understanding. Now I can. And the thing is, understanding the universe as a whole does begin with asking questions of self, what the self is doing, what the self sees around it, and ultimately, self-awareness. Where did I come from? Who am I? Where am I going? Why am I here? The answers are as unique as every atom in the universe and the heart of matter itself. We are unique as each atom in the universe, and when we are gone, we will never again see our like; however, the universe remembers our passing, mourns us, and welcomes us back into the cradle of starlight that made us.

Perhaps I make no sense (sometimes I do not), and maybe some of what I say is ultimately true, but I am comforted to know that I am a part of more than as Sagan put it, 'this pale blue dot'. Our lives have meaning... to more than you know.The following poem was my first attempt at explaining this understanding, and I do not know if I am much better at explaining it. But here it is nonetheless:

'The Edge of Memory'

Time lingers, memory fades...
Yearning for the return to starlight.

Dreams of forms and hopes of souls
Collide in the stillness of time
Wanting to explain
Reaching for an answer
Instead obscured in the shadows of life.

Atoms spin... realities divide
While a universe lives and dies
Forms of souls dream and hope
Longing to be revealed
Seeking rebirth within the cradle of time.

Hearts of stars ebb and flow
Eons pass as they have done
Without explaining
Not caring for answers
Yet nurturing the spark of life.

Thoughts of love's whispers and sighs
Emerge from the glow of starlight
Fearing the moments
Wondering what to do
If they discovered the mystery of time.

But hopes and dreams that form the soul
Vanish beyond the void of night
Believing in what will not come
Reaching for what must not be
Knowing finally the tragedy of life.

All that I am...
Waits at the edge of memory.


Beyond Lamentation and Regrets

I do a lot of writing, less than I have in the past, and never so much than when I have lost. Whether it was a divorce, the loss of a family member, or lost opportunities, it always seemed I am at my best in writing when my life is near its worst. The only time that this has not been borne out was when I was inspired through travel or a political reaction. In some cases, I write from a historical point of view, but in the end, those pieces seem to have some political spin on them. I should point out most of what I write is poetry, though I do write short stories and essays from time to time, plus innumerous papers I have written for school. I think poetry is easiest to write through pain or through desire, each being a form of passion, one a focus of what was lost, and the other a focus of what could be. And passion is all about focus, a building of energy within that culminates in an some form of release of that energy. In the case of desire, that can easily be construed sexually, but a romantic poem written with that kind of energy is something to behold (and I am not massaging my ego here, I mean poetry in general). In the case of pain, poetry is safer than most of the alternatives.

This brings me to somewhat of a unique poem in that it shares both qualities: pain and desire. In the end, pain triumphs, but that is only because it normally does. The poem was written specifically for one person originally, knowing full well our desires could not work out, but later evolved into a general farewell to those I would never see again but would always be a part of me. In studying the poem now, I feel I am beyond most of it. A regret eats at a person, as does a lament. If not contained, it tears at the soul until one realises that you have been consumed by it. For a long time, I was consumed by many regrets, too many farewells, far too many endings. As I began to understand what I am a part of, the connection to the universe as a whole, that it is as much a part of us, as I am it, well... I can bury my regrets.


If we do not meet again…

What remains of my heart is
Inadequate to the task
One more failure
One more thing unsaid
A testament to nothing save
Empty hopes and dreams.

If we do not speak…

The strength that still holds is
Not quite enough
A tenuous glance
A nervous word or two forgotten
This wondrous desire
Laden with regret.

If we do not touch…

What is true in my soul
I cannot deny
Images beyond feeling
Memories out of joint in time
A misplaced connection
Meant for another life.

If you do not know…

The burden is mine to bear
Tempered by passion
I could not explain
Another moment
Another glance
Reduced to a simple lament.

If we do not meet again in this life…
Let me feel the lack


The Obligatory Introduction

Welcome to something I have been putting off for sometime: joining a blog community (sort of, but to that latter). I have been on a site, writing.com, that has blogs and I had a journal before blogging became the popular pastime it is now. However, my writing portfolio might be expiring soon and so I thought to transfer some of my online life to another space. So, here it is. The majority of my early posts will be reprinting some old material peppered with a few posts or rants about the derring-do of my life... such as it is. I might entertain you with Cowboys scores, laugh about the Rangers not making the playoffs for the umpteenth time, or perhaps comment on some gaming or sci-fi issue. I might even throw in some old and new political commentary(I dare not call them essays, since I make few, if any citations) to spice things up at times...

Anyway, the above photo is me in one of my lighter moments. Some visitors might recognize me, others not. In any event, I bid you welcome, friends, new and old, and I hope I don't bore you too severely.