31 January 2007

The Face of the Enemy

Unless we get a wireless connection at our hotel this weekend, this will probably be my last post until I get back from IkkiCon. So, everyone have a great weekend and indulge my returning to a less frivolous subject...

In the movie, 'Crimson Tide', LCDR Hunter (Denzel Washington's character) comments that 'in the nuclear world, the real enemy is war itself'. This comes at a point in the movie where the ship's officers are also discussing Von Clausewitz and his maxim that war is the continuation of politics through other means. In times past, and perhaps even the recent past, these maxims were appropriate, though I think Hunter's assessment is the truest for the post-nuclear, ideological world. As someone who has read Karl von Clausewitz, his work, while still quoted by military historians far and wide, is dated, more appropriate for the 18th and 19th century, when war was a little more personal. By time the horrors of the 20th century permeated our consciousness, the idea of personal war was more or less laughable; however, the nature of war has changed once more.

To me, war has become less the instrument of politics and more the instrument of ideology. Now, some may lump ideology into politics, and that is well, but more and more war has transcended the idea of borders into what we see today. Perhaps it is the overwhelming images of suicide bombers and insurgencies that makes me see it as such, but I doubt it. Until the 1970's war was fought more or less within the borders of the nations that were fighting the war. Now, it can be fought anywhere an idea is threatened or maintained.

What, then, does this mean for the future? Perhaps the maxim should now be, 'war is the continuation of ideology through other means' since politics cannot completely contain (and we have seen that far too often) ideas, for good or ill. So, maybe the new face of the enemy is not war itself, but the idea that war can shape ideology and push traditional politics and methodology of war aside. Clearly, this is evident in many of the current crises around the globe, and will likely continue to remain so until something replaces the wars of ideas.

I am really not so sure how much sense I make, but simply some random thoughts I had today about the nature of war and I wanted to put them to page in case I lost them. I am not so much treating this as theory so much as a musing on the subject.


30 January 2007


This post should be a bit more casual than others, and frankly, I need a little break from my own formality, though fear not gentle readers, I will still try and throw something philosophical your way... besides, y'all likely won't be hearing much from me this weekend, since I will be in Austin attending IkkiCon, as the anime convention season is starting back up, and hopefully it will be a good one.

In any event, last night, amid my nominal ramblings across the 'Net, I got to thinking about the odd meaning or two of certain words. Then I started thinking about the homonym, 'overture'. In music, or in theatre, I know this word well, as do many. It is effectively a musical prologue, to get the audience warmed up for what is to come (or in the case of some bad musicals, to give the audience reason to fear :) Of course, overture has another meaning as well, a more social meaning, usually reserved for the diplomatic types, but not always out of the realm of politics. I was amused, I suppose at how, at their core, the meanings of the words were truly fairly similar. The musicians reach out to the audience, just as a person might use their words to reach out to others... in both cases, it seems that the intent is to get a favorable response from those that would otherwise be, at best, indifferent.

I guess the same can go for writing... well, no guesses about it. Nominally, I write because it is what I need to do, and if someone feels like commenting then ok by me. On the other hand, I am perhaps extending an overture to others to listen, hoping for a favorable response as all artists and diplomats do.

Sorry, nothing really tangible I suppose, just a little writing and musing for the sake of it.


28 January 2007

The Beginning of Understanding

I will say if that I start to wax tangential, do forgive me, for I simply have quite the number of thoughts running about, and I only write how I see them. I will try and be as comprehensible as I possibly can without confusing everyone, or myself.

To say that I understand something of my own processes and understand myself is true, but it would also be true that I have only begun to understand. The evolution of understanding is precarious and problematic at best... at worst, we simply fail. The journey of my life has been fraught with failed attempts at understanding, blows to my consciousness that sent my spiraling into an abyss from which I thought I could not escape. It is said that my Zodiac sign, Pisces, is the sign of sorrows, and for much of my life, this was true. Indeed, my life is still a struggle, but even that struggle abates in what precious little knowledge I have gained in my quest for the understanding of self.

We all have trials in our life, and I certainly will never say that mine are any worse than others. For the most part, my existence has been a little charmed: to be fair, I should have died on an operating table 23 years ago from severe neural trauma. Instead, every day since has been a gift of a sort, something I did not realize when I was younger, or for that matter, when older. I suspect I have lived in a haze most of my life, not understanding anything, or if I did, it was a touch of understanding, with the occasional writing or poem from those days that barely scratched the surface... like our first, tenuous attempt at reaching the stars, so much left to learn. Even when I thought I understood, or I was simply comfortable in my ignorance (which took up most of my 20's), something always gnawed at me, the proverbial itch that could not be scratched. Not even the death of my brother could fully awaken me from what actually seemed a nominal life, meaning what most of us really see day in and day out. This is not to say we do not have an understanding of the wider world, but we lose it in our youth, and only rarely allow it to re-awaken. Most of the time, it is an image that is just out of our reach, a little beyond our field of vision... and yet it exists, a reminder of what could be.

To some extent, my divorce, and attempts at recovery from it, helped awaken me to some understanding, as I have done most of my writing since then. Still, it took a bit more than that, alas. In order to understand sometimes, you must also endure the darkest part of yourself, the worst you see in others, an abyss that, quite simply, can claim you. I hope this does not sound melodramatic, but it is the best way for me to explain it, for the change has been, in so many ways, profound. The person I was ceased to be, yielding to the person I should have been all along, at least from a philosophical, intellectual and creative perspective. The physical person is about the same, though these changes affect the physical realm as well. What only seemed to be a surface glimmer upon a still pond, became an ocean of wonder that I am just beginning to see. What was once at the edge of my vision is now in full view. I started to see the beauty of the universe at large, beyond even what I had already imagined. To be fair, it was overwhelming.

I suppose that is the price of understanding, not being able to grasp it completely for fear of it consuming you, at least if you try and understand all at once. As soon as I realized that was part of the problem, I could move on to digesting it one bit at a time. Even still, the process has been painful while at the same time rewarding. The understanding of self can be such, for it forces you to see what few ever get to see about the nature of self. I think some of the darker things in my life that I experienced, including my own journey into such a place, has helped me face myself. It is tough, though. I have had to abandon a lot of things I thought essential in life, but to get to where I am, just beginning to understand, maybe being a little more ascetic is good for the soul.

I can say for sure one thing... three years ago I could not have written these words... hell, I did not even know they existed.

Everyone have a great week,


26 January 2007

A Tomorrow Found

Well a very long weekend is just beginning, to end a rather trying and painful (physically and mentally) week. I had something original planned tonight, but I decided to drag something out from the archives and hope it has not been too corrupted by all that hyperspatial interference :)

What follows is an evolution of older poems into one that I suppose is continuously evolving thanks to the nature of inspiration. Despite the lows of this week, I managed to write two original pieces and am now drastically re-tooling a third. So, the week was not a total loss then. Besides, I have had some fascinating discussions on and off line and I know I am a better person for having participated. Further, I want to thank those involved in said discussions for their comments, blogs and ideas illuminate the necessity of human discourse and its essential beauty. It would take me too long to link them all here, but suffice to say it involves most of the usual suspects who comment and allow me the privilege of joining their discussions, plus a few new faces who have helped create new ideas and made me ponder some deeper questions. Then we have cheap irreverent humour, which involves most of the Aussies :)

What does all this have to do with the following poem? Not much really, other than I am really tired and if I did not say all this now I might forget later... on the other hand, the universe moves in amazing ways and we are all a part of its mystery. So, this week, for all the lows, the universe has seen fit to reveal a little of itself to me through the light of others. Take a bow, y'all deserve it.

'Tomorrows Found'

I searched...
For a realm far removed of self,
Waiting to see once more.
All that I gave,
All that I knew,
Enfolded through memory
Fractured and forgotten,
Scattered amid this crucible
Between space and time.

I agonized...
Beyond instants within the seconds,
Reaching toward worlds disconnected of self.
All that I sought,
All that I understood,
Lost in moments
Prideful and hurtful,
Crushed by the weight
Of such tormented sorrow.

I left...
To find what I already knew,
Wanting to see once more.
All you gave,
All you understood,
In that realm far removed of self,
No longer forgotten,
Revealed by the grandeur
At the heart of space and time.

Now I see...
Tomorrow... as it was meant to be.


25 January 2007

Australia Day

I wanted to wish my Aussie readers a Happy Australia Day whether they consider it 'Invasion' day or not :) I am sure they would wish me the best on the Fourth of July as well. Besides, most holidays these days are not that jingoistic anymore. It is all about food, alcohol, flirting, and forgetting about the government as much as possible.

But, in honor of the idea of patriotism, I leave you with some conflicting ideas about the subject from a bunch of dead people:

'Some claim a place in the list of patriots, by an acrimonious and unremitting opposition to the court. This mark is by no means infallible. Patriotism is not necessarily included in rebellion. A man may hate his king, yet not love his country.' -- Samuel Johnson

'He that accepts protection, stipulates obedience. We have always protected the Americans; we may, therefore, subject them to government.' -- Ibid.

'Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel.' -- Also Ibid.

''My country, right or wrong'' is a thing no patriot would ever think of saying except in a desperate case. It is like saying "My mother, drunk or sober.'' -- G.K. Chesterton (who also knows the mysteries of poetry and cheese :)

'Patriotism is when love of your own people comes first; nationalism, when hate for people other than your own comes first.' -- General Charles de Gaulle (crazy, De Gaulle saying something interesting)

'The notion that a radical is one who hates his country is naïve and usually idiotic. He is, more likely, one who likes his country more than the rest of us, and is thus more disturbed than the rest of us when he sees it debauched. He is not a bad citizen turning to crime; he is a good citizen driven to despair.' -- H.L. Mencken

Last one:

'Guard against the impostures of pretended patriotism.' -- George Washington

While intentionally tongue-in-cheek, the main idea is that even those who might be considered authorities on the subject have different ideas on what patriotism was and is. Personally, I do not mind some flag waving now and then (though I am not a fan of 'God Bless America' at ballgames), but I am hardly a jingoistic nationalist crying 'America, love it or leave it you commie pinko swine' (or perhaps something less Cold War). I do think of the concept of patriotism embedded in human consciousness frequently, but when it comes to holidays, I would rather kick back with a beer or a vodka and cranberry juice (Cape Cod) and grill the carcass of a dead animal with some friends and family.

In any event, have a great day however you decide to spend it.


24 January 2007


Things are a little hectic with an unplanned move (financial issues that would take way too long to explain and talking about it would make me rant more and more sooo..), so I thought I would add another poem to the archives, one that I probably should have added sooner. Of course, I have so many that, on occasion, I lose track.

The first form of this poem began as an essay my junior year in high school, which really started me on the path to writing. This portion of an essay, which described many of the women in my life at the time,(not all that many considering I was 17 :) inspired my teachers to push me to write. Later, since the essay itself was so lyrical, I converted it to a couple of poems, then later merged them into their final form. This final form is much less idealistic than the others and was really borne of my catharsis in coping with my divorce.

Still, I have always liked the metaphor.


A kiss from the void...

Becoming a harbinger of death.
A battered and broken soul,
Unable to fight back,
Ready to yield.

A simple breeze...

Heralding the fury of nature.
An unrepentant victim,
Incapable of realizing
The failure of pride.

The hope of dreams...

Unleashing the storm of nightmares.
A foolish and haughty belief,
Holding on to shards
Of what will never mend.

The raging whirlwind...

Ravaging the remains of the heart.
A bitter and horrible price,
For being the one
Who could not let go.

A gentle wind...
That started it all.

A vision I could not explain.
I loved you... hated you...
Now I must live without you.


23 January 2007

Of Time And Soul And Simple Things

Maybe it was the relaxing state the Vicodin put me in, or perhaps just reflection while having to recover, but I was thinking about an old title to something I never really put together (though I used elements in later works, in particular 'Edge of Memory' in the post Symphonies_In_Starlight). But I always like the above title and decided to use some synthesis in all of this, taking some ideas from other pieces but giving this new one (wow, plague and war, my inspirations :) a tack all its own.

'Of Time and Soul and Simple Things'

Our dreams connect
In all that we are...

Standing at the river's edge,
Embraced by such a gentle wind,
Dreams and forms
Of whispers and sighs
Brush against a canvas of the unimagined,
Lingering in the instant that yields the
The spark of the light of the soul.

Our hearts connect
In what may yet be...

Waiting in the cradle of starlight,
Caressed by a welcoming love,
Forms of dreams
Become impassioned whispers and sighs
Seeking a future borne of present
Trapped in the mysteries of a kiss.

Our souls collide
In all that we are...

Immersed within the veil of night,
Consumed by the fires of an eternal spark,
Whispers and sighs
Transform forms of dreams
Drifting from the moment to the yearning of
The truth of the wonder of the soul.

Our dreams connect...
In the splendor of simple things.


22 January 2007

No Return

When going through and labeling my posts, I was sort of surprised I had not added this particular piece, written after one of the many bombings and conflicts between Palestine and Israel, a conflict that, territorially, has been going on since the 9th century BCE (the idea that the Israelites 'conquered' Canaan is lacking in concrete proof) when various kingdoms and empires decided to wrestle over the region. Still, my inspiration was more recent events and those events have inspired too much for my taste. I could also write something about the hope that justice might take the place of vengeance, but I am tired of sounded like a broken record in that regard.

'No Return'

From stones and swords,
To bombs and tanks,
The result is always the same.
Neither side accepting the blame,
For the madness they have unleashed
Upon their fragile domains.

By foot and by horse,
And by car and by plane,
The message they send remains.
Both sides unable to hear
The voices of their God,
Listening instead to the cries of rage.

Because of fear and anger,
Blood and hatred remains.
The result will still be the same,
Neither side giving in,
Until no one is left alive
To inhabit their fragile domains.



An aside: If I sound a little incoherent, it is because I am doped up on pain meds and antibiotics for a rather painful staph infection. Thankfully, it was caught early, and I just need to rest for a couple of days.

I know that many people have used this feature before, and I did not realise how useful it was until I tried it out. I started with a few posts, then in my drug-induced state, I decided to label all my posts, hence the new sidebar, the HoloIndex. I noticed a not too surprising trend on what items have the most labels as well. Still, it might make it easier if someone (or me) is looking for something in particular.


20 January 2007


Something strange happened today... while reading an article on the archaeology of the Trojan War, I was inspired to write something I had mulling about in my head for some time. Thank the Muse...

To the reader: Ilios is the 8th century BCE form of what we know as the city-state of Troy (hence the name of the book called 'The Iliad').


Where rests the glory of this fabled shore?
In the remnants of the tormented dead?
Perhaps those that have seen the end,
Cast from the heights of blood-stained walls.


Lost beneath the waves of a wine-dark sea.

What price secured this fabled shore?
How many fell to spear and bow?
Amid the cries of the forgotten and forlorn,
The stench of battle permeates the air.


Made whole within the flames of heroic pyres.

Who weeps now for this fabled shore?
This realm of black-hearted gods and men?
They stand beyond the veil of time
In the form of Hades' breathless dead.


Her glory tempered by the memory of a wine-dark sea.


18 January 2007

The Fall of Night

Ok, so I lied about posting before the weekend... still, I encourage anyone brave enough to read the prior story/posts (as well as anything else of course :) Later this weekend, I should have another terribly long story posted, so you have so much to look forward to...

I have been reading a lot about politicizing fiction, particularly science fiction, and the debates that have resulted. For my part, I am politically moderate but understand that many of my readers are not and many that I read are not. I also see a lot of politics entwined with religion, particularly extremism and how it relates to 9/11 and beyond. My position, then as now, was that things were going to end badly, no matter what because nations have not generally learned that vengeance is not the same as justice. I think I have made that pretty clear in the past in my posts Reckonings and Ruin, and in other pieces I have yet to post. On the other hand, I am not so naive to think that war is sometimes necessary...

So, I am posting the following piece, written just after 9/11 (I think the day after) which, more than five years later, at times feels as if I have just written it. Then, as now, I did not see an end in sight...

'The Fall of Night'

I watched the fall of Night
Image after image hammering into me;
No horror, no fear, only sorrow...
For I knew what had to be.

I listened to speeches under the cover of Night
Word after word pounding my head;
As the anger, the madness, the pain...
Filled my heart with dread.

I awoke in the middle of the Night
Dream after dream piercing my soul;
Seeing the rhetoric, the resolve, the retribution...
Drive us into a war we have never known.

I sat and waited for Night to end
Knowing full well that it should;
As the fear, the horror, the pain mounted...
I wondered if it ever would.


17 January 2007

Alternate Lives: Falling Toward Eternity

Just a warning. I do recommend reading the previous post, Alternate_Lives:_Awareness. As it is part one to the story, it allows this post to make a little more sense (such as it is :).
Again, thanks in advance for reading, and I appreciate all of you that have taken the time to read this rather long story.


The others signaled to her.


Ironic to use the word in such a matter considering, time was what was at stake. No, not ironic. Nothing was anymore. She sighed, as if it could be heard in this unrelenting void, the space she moved between. The others could barely be felt, they were so distant, waiting for the ultimate end. Still, they were quite aware of what had to happen, aware of his purpose. Like many of their experiments, though, he was not exactly moving according to plan. She considered the failures, though it pained her to recollect them.

Awareness… it came a little too late. Some of it was his doing, others environmental. Then, it took him too long to control his awareness; however, his control was at issue now. He had become too good at crossing the boundaries of time and space. They only wanted him aware, not able to control anything. She had warned them of the possibility. They refused to listen, of course. She knew… knew he would become like this. But then she had always known the best and worst in him.

The others grew impatient… they had waited so long. She simply recognized their thoughts and agreed. It was time, as it ever was in the realm between the seconds. She only hoped that this, too, would not backfire on them.

Part II: Falling Toward Eternity


I watched them sleep. Such has been my curse, ever since I found… ever since I left her. Still, her happiness has always been most important to me, and in that place, with that um… me, she finally could be happy. So why have I kept coming back to this moment, the precise moment I left her with me? Transdimensional mechanics were far too confusing, and I had studied the subject for eons it seemed. I sighed, though they could not hear me. It seemed better that way. Pity, though, she still thought the person lying next to her was the real me, the one who brought her to this reality, our own Eden. Then why did I decide to leave her?

I pondered this question for some time, even while jumping from one reality to the next with a skill that would make any cross-dimensional traveler proud. Not that I had met any others beside myself, and those who decided to come with me. I wondered if I had been abusing my abilities, putting friends and family in the exact situation that they should have been in all along. I continued to check on them periodically, and with a few odd exceptions I could not control (like celestial mishaps and alien invasions), they all got on very well. I felt pleased with my work, almost like… well, almost like a beaming parent, or deity.

She stirred, sleeping a bit restlessly. Had I influenced the environment, caused her to emerge from the deep sleep of passion? No, she knew me better than anyone else, knew the real me, before my… emergence. She might have sensed me somehow. Perhaps it was a sort of dimensional attunement. We had traversed dozens of dimensions before settling on this one, a pastoral world that did not know the horrors that could lay in its future. Maybe… no. I doubt that could have been it. She was the catalyst, but was she ever aware?

Who’s chasing who?

What the…

I walked quietly out of the shelter and into the slight chill of the pre-dawn air. I heard… nothing. How I wished I… no. I turned back to her, watched her carefully, once the light in my eyes, now meant for other days. I started to reach to her, to touch her face one last time… but I could not.

‘Good night my love’, I whispered to the air.

I let them sleep, content in the moment. I let them have that at least. Morning would come soon, and they had this world to face… together.


Something had bothered me about that night, watching them. I had these types of thoughts while traveling. It almost became an art, moving between the fabric of time and space. I could slow down, take my time if needed, or get there almost before I left. (I admitted that was a rather taxing trick) Normally, I gave myself about an hour or so, sometimes a little less, that way I could absorb some information about my destination. I had realized that this had been my problem early on in my travels. As I became aware, I was shifting between realities at a frighteningly fast pace, and hence my disorientation each time. Now, it was almost like walking through a door, except that I had been tearing apart the fabric of space-time. Occasionally, I thought of the consequences of my actions. Was I causing any rips in time and space, or accelerating the collapse of the universe, or several universes? I decided to leave that question for future generations to consider. Yet somewhere, in the depth of my being, I knew something was not quite right. Dimension hopping surely took its toll on some inherent nature of the universe. I really could not consider that. My purpose seemed set. I had learned so much, seen more than could be imagined. I could not stop, nor did I want to.

This one... this vision... had always intrigued me. One that got away, so to speak. She had a quality to her that I could not describe, even when I had known her, all too briefly. Had it been so long ago? Time, I thought, was irrelevant, yet my memories said otherwise. I really needed to look into that. Was I aging mentally? I had all but stopped the process of physically aging, one strange side effect of literally blasting myself apart and rebuilding myself with every transit. Did I die each time? I smiled slightly, bemused at my query. I had seen death. The answer really did surprise me.

I waited a little longer this time, almost as a ghost, observing patiently, perhaps more than I should have. I had my reasons, especially in this place. Through some strange twist of dimensional physics I could not even bear to comprehend, we only met in this dimension. How odd. And stranger still, it was the Prime… well, my Prime. The one I left, I suppose. Yet I still existed in Prime, even though the sum of my memories came from this dimension before my Awareness. How, then, was I functioning? Did I make a copy? Or did another me fill the void somehow?

These things continued to puzzle me as I watched our interaction, not long before I became aware. Ah, the answer. If I moved further into the future, would I still exist? No, I existed as myself, as this traveler.

What if we are all mirrors of the same soul, fragmenting more and more?

Right, waita… that voice again. I shook it from my mind focused on the task at hand, and decided to attempt something rather strange. This soul, this woman’s existence, was only in this reality. That had really disturbed me. No analog, how? It seemed as if I should do something about it. Maybe I could. What was that Einstein said once? Well, I’m not rolling dice, nor am I God. If I had such control of time and space, the ability to take others with me, could I not… yes. It would take a lot of doing. So be it. I hoped someone appreciated this. I concentrated and felt the fabric of space-time cry out in the pains of celestial birth.

Ow. That really hurt.



The splendor of it all laid before me, literally diverging before my eyes. I was awestruck, really. Honestly, I thought it was a simple thing to create an alternate reality. I mean, we did it all the time it seemed. Every decision we made had another outcome, at least most of them, and therefore, an infinite number of alternate realities existed. So, why was the creation of this one so spectacular, and so… so… taxing. I simply suggested an alternate thought in her head. How bad could that have been? Maybe she was bound and determined not to have that thought. But there was only one of her. How? Why? And why did I feel as if I were drifting… quite fast actually, drifting back into… back into…Wait… I wanted to see what I had created, like all… I just wanted to see. I felt the divergence as if it were a part of myself, torn from my being. I saw through the universe’s eyes. I saw the lives I created. I saw…


My room. What a terrible dream…too jumbled to even sort it out. I tried to clear my head, but could not. The world kept spinning. Was I out drinking? This would have been the usual result. I peered over at my dusty nightstand. No Gatorade, so intoxication was probably out. Sick… that was it. I was sick. The sense of nausea overwhelmed me, and I stumbled through the vertigo and into the bathroom, hoping not to create a terrible mess. I reached for the toilet, and the nausea left me. What the… that was quick. I stood up and noticed that the world had in fact stopped spinning. Good. Something was wrong, though.

I knew this place… my apartment, could smell the dust, the slight smell of dirty dishes, whatever take-out I had left in the sink, and the horrors that probably inhabited my refrigerator. I really needed to clean up. But that was not the problem. I was pretty sure I was a messy person. Not wrong… a little disgusted, but why should I have been if that was normal? I scanned the living room, looking for reminders, anything that would help sort my head out. The posters seemed right. TV, ok. Computer… again a little dusty. The books, ah… I fumbled through them, knowing a problem would arise. Medieval history, biography of Richard I, in English, um… Civil War battlefield atlas, ok, comic books, ah, light reading, and oh… how did that get in this pile? Nothing metaphysical or odd within the novels, though. I had hoped for something more. The realization sunk in. There was nothing more. Everything was fine, but why did it seem wrong?

Maybe I should have gone back to sleep. No, I did not need that… yet. A drink, maybe. I moved over to my windows and opened the blinds. The view over the pool was the same, though I could have sworn it was winter, and not the dead of summer. Hmm… the air conditioner was running full blast. Definitely summer. I sighed and sat down on my couch, hoping something, anything would come to my fragmented mind and answer some… any of my questions. If I only knew what the questions were, that would have helped as well. The longer I sat pondering, the more I wanted to drift… feeling a bit out of sorts, no more out of sorts, hearing voices that did not belong to me, seeing places I had no memory of. Loving those that I had never loved. It was becoming too much for me. A terrible, horrible thing. I did not want this, could not control the influx of emotion and memory.

That will cause problems very soon.

That voice… I knew it, but it was not the voice I thought it belonged too. How odd. Most of this was rather odd. It seemed as if I was expected to know some great truth and the world waited for me simply to produce the solution. Holding its breath, that’s how it felt. Why?

Because you have to make the decision.

I spun around as time seemed to slow, crawl to a stop. My apartment folded, shifted, and distorted. I even seemed to be out of place somehow. Her. But not quite… she reminded me of so many I had known… millions it seemed, but I know I could not have… or could I? She almost seemed ethereal, like I was confronting an angelic being. Her expression, though, was far less angelic.

“I know you… I think. No.” I was sure. “I do know you, but you’re… elsewhere.”

“Of course you do. Well, our souls know each other. And part of me is elsewhere, for now. And I am glad you’re not as confused I as I thought you would be.“ She spoke elegantly, almost with no trace of accent. “Oddly enough, we have very little time for discussion. I need to get you sorted out, and quickly.”

Funny, I had heard that before, too, but in real life…er… a life. “What’s happening… happened to me? I’m remembering far too much...”

“Are you? I doubt it. Your body is simply readjusting considering the strain you put it under.”


“Congratulations. “ She waved her arms around my apartment, though she seemed to want to encompass more. “You managed to create your own reality. Even God needed a day’s rest after six days work. You’ve been asleep for weeks.”

“Oh…” I sniffed at the kitchen. “That explains a lot. No… wait… surely I’m not... “

“No… just in tune with the flow of space-time, but better than anyone else, I’ll grant you.” she smiled at that, as if she had something to do with it.

“Look… I feel like there is a grain, well, more than a grain of truth to all of this, but who the heck are you? Really? I mean, I know you, but I don’t. You should be having a happy existence in another lifetime with another… me. Pity that. “ I did not quite comprehend the memories flowing into me, but they were real enough.

“It’s really not important.”

“Yes. It is.” I shot her a cold glance. I had to know. Something, aside from the universe bending and collapsing around me, was not quite right.

She sighed, somewhat exasperated it seemed. I did not care. I wanted answers. “I’m an old… soul. We have known each other for a very long time and in many incarnations, in many realities, including this one. That’s the short answer. We don’t have time for longer explanations.”

Actually, it made sense, especially considering the memories and all that I had apparently done. I could not stop looking at her, feeling the emotion pour from her. Something was tearing at her with regards to me, and in turn, it tore at me. I continued to look into the mournful depth of her eyes. The longer I looked, the more I knew. The more I… Was she healing me? Making me remember?

No. You are healing yourself. Keep remembering.

And telepathic to boot. Wonderful.

Remember… I remembered. The core of my being, the catalyst. Her… a portion of her at least. What went wrong, then?

“A lot of things really.” she admitted. “There are others like us, though not with our ability. Except their awareness is a curse, not a boon. You see them all the time. Neurotics, sociopaths, politicians, history professors, others like that. “ She smiled wryly. I chuckled a little. I think she was joking, some. “They want this to end. The splitting of realities in every instant is painful beyond words to them. And in some ways, to all of us. Our souls cannot keep fragmenting this way.

Clearly understating the obvious I said, “So my act of creation did more harm…” I understood. Still, I wondered (and knew she could still hear me) about the positives. The knowledge that our decisions might have worked out for the best, the hope that our regrets did not have to be forlorn. I could see the beauty of many of the lives I had lived, and the sorrow of others. Funny, she existed in so many. Would it have been something more if only one of us existed? I sighed and looked to her again. What right had I to create others, but what right did we have to take them away?

What about the new soul? The ones who have not fragmented across time and space. What about the soul you tampered with out of ego alone?

“I did not create parallel universes. “, I glowered at her. “Besides, she would have made a decision eventually that would have caused a split… somewhere. It is a fundamental nature of the universe. Or is it? Could I… ” She sat, quietly, waiting for my own answer.

I understand.


“It’s done…” I stammered, barely able to breath, to feel. I laid on my apartment floor, hardly able to move, the last of my strength fading. She was whole… I… we were whole again. But it did not matter. She looked down at me and caressed my cheek. I could see her, as she had always been, still angelic, and yet… she was fading too. We were whole and all I wanted… I could see… the light of the universe in her eyes, but all I wanted to see was her love, borne of so many lives together. Would we still… All I wanted…

“One more destination, my love.” she then kissed me with a gentle passion that reached beyond all the moments of our existence. A smile… her smile, and…


Epilogue: In the Beginning…

I’ve been here before.

Not quite.

The brilliance of the universe unfolded in one chaotic, yet ordered instant. The universe was not dying, I knew that now. It was about to live... All my thoughts, my dreams, my lives faded into darkness, but within the darkness an ember burned bright. So bright… so… wonderful. Would it be right this time? Will what I have done, fade with me?

No… that’s why I’m here. That’s why I was here, mere moments ago. I laughed, if laughing were possible.

She was right, I thought, as I saw the rebirth… as my soul, my essence, became a part of what would be. I hoped… at the dawn of time I hoped for us all. She was right.

I hadn’t been here before.


Alternate Lives: Awareness

Prologue: Entropy

Do you finally understand?

Such a scene overwhelmed my senses, even in their present state. So vibrant, so electric… words, even if they could, did not escape my lips. Transcendent, the only way to begin to describe this event, an event I knew would come to be, just a sure as everyone else who came before me knew. Of course, no one could ever believe there would be a witness. Honestly, I was amazed at that fact. Yet, I stood, well… drifted really, within the mesmerizing show around me. It called to me, just as I called to it. I did not know how, only that it sought something primal within, as if it knew as well I would be here. Could a consciousness exist, even now? Perhaps not a true consciousness, but more of a collective understanding… a knowledge of what was, is, and, well… would be was something of a problem that needed sorting out. Unfortunately, no time remained, or seemed to exist for that matter. I laughed internally and realized that matter itself was about to cease. Fine time for me to think of the ironies of the universe. And the universe… it lay before me, collapsing into entropy. I had read many books, articles and papers on this subject thousands upon thousands of times. Still, the event never could prepare me for the inspiring wonder of it all. I guess if I could conjure an audience I might have written about the event. Since no audience existed, I let the inspiration pass and waited… waited for the last seconds of existence to spectacularly slip away.

Only one thing plagued me in this rather calm (really not near as violent as I thought) end to all that was, er… is… How did I get here?


I knew that sound, should I have even heard one.

I think it is a convention you dreamed up.

That voice… thought. I knew it as well. I let what was left of my consciousness drift to the sound. I could feel an image form in my mind, and though the universe collapsed around me, I managed to be shocked one more time.

Don’t worry… I’m not so much who you think I am.

I thought I was the only one left, the only one who could be here… at this point.

Left? Perhaps you have forgotten… or you still don’t understand.

I tried to contemplate a response, but none would come. Wait. I came here of my own accord. But why? She… yes, she… how? How, anything, really? No, I do not understand, I replied as well as I could.

You will.

Part I: Awareness

You have to remember… or be damned.


I awoke with a start. Voices… dreams. All... a dream. Getting more intense though. Felt horribly real. Still dark. I looked over to the pale light of my alarm clock. Four AM. Typical. About when I have been waking up recently. I would not be able to get back to sleep, that much was certain. No rest for the sleep deprived. Oh… I noticed the book next to me. I must have been reading it, trying to take my mind off school and the paper I had to write. No wonder I was having crazy dreams. 12th Planet. Great read, but a bit out in left field… somewhere near Jupiter.

I sighed, vowing not to read any of Sitchin's books late at night, at least until the next time I did it. Disgusted, I tossed the paperback aside, and got out of bed. Even though it was still early, I turned on my computer and stared for a moment fruitlessly. I wondered if I would ever finish this latest research paper. Finish? Sure. Would it be any good? Well… I glanced at the biography of Richard I sitting by the computer. Interesting enough, but I needed more than a biography to support my conclusions. Something seemed odd about the title. I had not remembered seeing that before…


Was I nodding off? My face felt like it hit the keyboard again? Damn. Never going to finish this paper. Thirty-five pages on the criticism of historiographical methods in Medieval History. I yawned thinking about it. Why wouldn’t they let me just do my research? I had enough to do without the extra... I stood up and shook the cobwebs out of my head. Felt a little… unsettled. Not enough to eat? I looked around at the squalor that was my small apartment. Hmm… leftover fries and a cheeseburger. I sniffed the burger. Still good, so I must have eaten recently. I lazily took a bite, more out of requirement than hunger. Setting the burger back down on the edge of my cluttered desk, I stumbled to the kitchen and peered into the wastes of my refrigerator, hoping not to be attacked by the leftovers before I retrieved a carbonated beverage. I succeeded, barely. What was that yellow mold on the cheese? Ew.

No time, never enough. Had to get this paper done, or I would fail this semester and lose my financial aid. Could not let that happen, for I had worked too hard to get back into school to finish my grad work. Shouldn’t have spent all that time gaming… ah, well. Not completely my fault. I was married to a gamer for a while. I sighed. Look how that turned out. I had been divorced for almost two years and she was still angry over details. Details... I was always lost in hers. Icy blue eyes... long, luxurious black hair that she occasionally dyed burgundy, and the way she moved... ah. Enough. After all that we had been through, I deserved a little anger too. Well, such was the way of things. I tried to move on... and it was working out so well. I took a drink of the soda and was thrilled to have the caffeine soon work its magic and keep me up long enough to finish. I shuffled over to my desk and sat back down, catching a glimpse of myself in the monitor’s reflection. Man, did I look that bad? I shrugged. I did not care. Nor did I want to.

A chill rolled up my spine, that feeling as if something is not quite right, but not quite wrong. It just seemed odd. I could not place it, and continued typing away while deciphering a journal’s bad French to English translation. Then the realization hit me. I was translating a journal from Latin, not French. I would swear by it. I may have been tired, not taken leave of my now rattled senses. I searched the mess that was my desk, my room and throughout my apartment, but to no avail. The journal I knew I was working on had disappeared. And the journal I had in front of me was one I had never seen before… I looked at an article in the journal. An author was examining the research of Richard the Lionheart’s latest biography, calling into question his attack on the Vexin in 1201. I dropped the journal and my heart skipped a beat. Richard I died in 1198 from a gangrenous crossbow wound at Chalus-en-Chabrol. He never attacked the Vexin, but something in the back of my mind told me it was so. As if I were remembering days that never were. But the logical part of my brain screamed what I was remembering was impossible. It had to be. No. Richard lived for ten more years and conquered the remainder of France. I muttered to myself, “C’est imposible!”

I was speaking French. I said some more words. French. I had never been able to speak French this well. English? I tried, but it sounded painful. Arrgh. Middle English. My memory reminded me that English was a dead language as much as Greek. Latin? Almost perfect. I knew the world was not right and I was becoming a part of it. I scanned the flat quickly (flat? Damn.) Everything seemed alright. The televisor was where it was supposed to be, so was the wireless. I looked over at my desk. The computation machine appeared to be in order. Even the Interweb was functioning. I decided to turn on the televisor to check the programmes. Five stations? Wait, it was a Sunday. New Bretigny United would be playing... but, what happened to the Cow...



“Ow… dammit!”, I yelped as I hit a hardwood floor. Hey, that was in English; however, I distinctly recalled my apartment not having hardwood floors. I was groggy, a bit calm, though. Nauseous? A little. That empty feeling in the pit of the stomach. Like from before… what the hell was happening? The smell... not right as well. I knew that smell. Oh God. I tried to regain my bearings and looked up from the floor. “Holy…”, I exclaimed as a not-quite clothed woman peered from over the bed at me. Waitaminute. She must have seen the abject horror in my eyes. My pulse quickened. I knew her… of course I knew her, but a long time ago. I thought… quickly. It had been that long ago. She looked so young.

“What the hell's wrong with you? Scare you off, did I?”, she inquired coyly in something of a Southern twang, somewhat amused. “You were just fine a minute ago, more than fine really.” She smiled mischievously at that, implying more than I could handle at the moment, but certainly less than I expected. I tried to say something… anything, but nothing could be formed. I was astonished, partly because of what happened between us. Nothing actually, hence my astonishment. At this moment though, she was in my… a bed, and reached out her hand to me and offered to pull me off the floor. I took that warm hand I had so longed for numerous times and stood, noticing I was a lot lighter than I should have been. I felt healthier too. It hit me.

I was younger. She was younger. But none of this happened, no matter how much I wanted it to. The woman dragged me back into the bed and lay against me, a bit forceful at that. “Now, are you gonna tell me what’s wrong?”

“Um… er…”

“Not a good start.” Her tone flattened, eyes sharpening some.

“Sorry… must have hit my head or something.” I smiled sheepishly, hoping to extricate myself from this line of questioning. I did not know what was wrong, or what was right for that matter. I needed to know, though.

“Usually doesn’t happen to you in the heat of the moment." She grinned again, with the delight of a feline playing with her prey. Oh... I always wanted to be on the receiving end of that look.

“No... I suppose not." That answered one of my questions. We were a lot more than involved. Explained why I was lightheaded and a little calm. But that could be whatever was happening to me. Which was? I tried to think, but she kept looking at me and inched her way closer to my face. I could see the sparkling wonder and passion in her emerald eyes. Her breath…so warm, and she smelled like I remembered I thought she should. That made no sense. Nothing made sense. I felt her lips against mine. I did not care. For some reason, the kiss made sense, as if it were always a part of me. It was cold comfort, but comfort nonetheless.

I awoke in the dark, noticing it would be light soon. She was still asleep, her face buried in my chest and somewhat concealed by her long, auburn, almost red hair. I did not know what to think. My mind was reeling, but I knew… I felt… right, as I did before, as if I was remembering what should be but never was. And the longer I lay in her embrace, the more comfortable I felt. I think I was adjusting somehow. Could that be part of it? If I lingered too long, would my mind simply cease? What of the memories of… um… myself? Where is he… ah… am I? How could I get back? I looked down at her, nuzzled against me. Did I want to get back? I sighed. However wonderful this was, whatever she means to the me now… here… I felt differently. I closed my eyes and waited… for…


Blue-green… skies, no... water!

That sickening feeling again, except it was enhanced by free-fall of… a wave? I felt something strike me in the head as I was thrown against the surf and smashed into the ocean floor, at least it probably was the ocean floor. The stinging in my eyes… yep, salt water. My arm hurt. Did I land on it wrong? Would it matter in a moment? I noticed I was drowning. How ignominious. I tried to surface, but was forced back under. Damn… how big was that wave?! I could feel myself waver, the blackness approaching… something… someone… grabbed me. I did not think. I hurt too much. Just as well. I needed to rest awhile.

I know you are waiting. I see you all. I want to awaken. I long to know you again, to know you for the first time. To forget the pain, to remember. I want to remember…

My cheek felt cool. A hand… brushing against me. Voices… English. Thank goodness for that at least. Odd. A bit of a drawl. I couldn’t quite make it out. No, not Texan. Almost British. Australian. It made perfect sense. I was home. Or at least where I thought home should be, where I always wanted to be. I never kept my promise to return. But I have… in this strange journey I have undertaken. Maybe I died. Sounded too easy. Besides, I hurt too much to be dead. Clichéd, but true. My head felt like something had pounded itself against it. A surfboard, maybe? My right arm was broken, I could definitely feel that. I wanted to open my eyes. I really did, yet the fear was overwhelming. I knew exactly what I would see. Not because I remembered to be so, but because I wanted it to be so. I felt her lips press against my forehead. I opened my eyes. I could feel the tears welling in my eyes. All that I had lost returned to me in an instant. I knew this place as if I were born to it. The moment… the moment would last.

Ten years ago, I made a choice to leave her. It was the hardest and worst decision of my life. I had always hoped for another chance. I did not think it could ever be like this. Her smile was warm and tender and she rested her hand against mine… the good one. I sat up, checking my surroundings. As I thought… hospital. I was still a little dizzy, probably a concussion. Felt like a bad hangover, but a bit more kick. I looked to her. She was older than I remembered, but not much. I think I felt older, but it was getting hard to tell. How many times had I really done this? More than I remember? She noticed my puzzlement and asked, “Are you getting another spell? You had quite an experience.”

Her accent… something I always loved about her. I loved everything about her; every gentle curve of her flesh to the unconditional love in her heart. Strangely, she loved everything about me as well. I tried to form words, and this time I was finally capable of speaking.“Fine. More than you know. It’s so good to see you."

She looked amused. “Such a silly Texan. You see me all the time. “

“Never enough for me.” , I smiled sheepishly. She smiled back and kissed my lips gently. It… I could not describe it. Nor did I want to. “So much… I need to say.”

She kept smiling, bemused at my effort. “You hit harder than you thought. “ She leaned closer and whispered lightly in my ear. “You’ve said all you could ever need to say to me. You know that.“. I nodded. “You gave up everything to be with me. “ I continued to nod, thinking how I wished it were true. But in fact it was, and it made me ill.

“How long do I need to stay here?” I asked, trying to change the subject and assess the damage done to me.

“Not long… overnight I think. I’ll stay with you. I don’t have a lecture in the morning, so it’ll be fine.” I nodded again, wondering how far along she was with her degree. I knew, actually. The memories of this… of me, told me. But I knew another place as well. My memory. The woman as I knew her…

In the world I remembered, she did get her degree eventually but we did not speak of it. We drifted apart as long distance lovers often do. It would not last. I pushed away, wanting to wallow in self-pity, not caring for what I had done, nor for her. My life continued in the direction I wanted it to, for good or ill, and I heard nothing from the distant land I wanted to call home. I heard nothing from her, not for some time. We did speak again… had it only been a few months since we spoke? It must have been. She had gotten married, finished her degree and was happy. She had a daughter as I recalled. The conversation was pleasant enough. I apologized for what I had done, but she had forgiven me long ago and did not want to talk of such things. Instead, we chatted idly in the realm of small talk and did not concern ourselves with deeper things. She invited me to see her when I was in Australia next. I chuckled, wondering how long that would be.

“Something wrong?” she asked. Oh… I must have chuckled without saying anything. It happens when I get lost in thought.

“No… just reminiscing.”

“Of what?” she queried.

“Us… “

I looked to her and gazed into her soulful brown eyes. I wanted to stay there in that instant. She could see I wanted to say something. It hurt, but it was what had to be done. Something… deeper was telling me. Time. Fine… “You need to know how much I love you… that I will always love you. “ I stammered it out, trying not to break down. At least I had this… at least in this place, what was meant to be… would be. It was an odd sensation, being drawn away. I saw her… saw the confusion, and in one brief second… understanding.


You must awaken. You must know. I want to be aware. But it must be yours.

Hot! Plate. Almost burned myself. Now this setting was familiar. I knew… almost instantly it seemed. I tried to discern why but I had other matters to attend to, most importantly trying not to burn dinner for a bunch of hungry people. Odd… I never wanted to come back here… of all places. I looked from the kitchen, into the den. They were all sitting around, laughing at some snide comment or joke. All of them. Those I left behind with a purpose. And the one who I felt left me… I heard her coming down the hall. Had I moved in time? Before, it seemed place was more a factor. Was time more an issue now? She stepped in front of me… startling me, batting her icy blue eyes at me in delight, knowing she had gotten the better of me. It was something she liked to do. I smirked and tried to hide my sense of disgust. I left joy and returned to banality. It was not that I did not care… far from it, but the laughter, the words, her movements. A reminder of something all too painful, and too recent.

And yet, something felt out of place. Not quite right. I excused myself quickly and left her with the kitchen details. She simply shrugged and took over. She enjoyed cooking to an extent. I stumbled down the hall and examined the bedrooms. Ours… ours was still there, messy and much like I remembered. Roommates? Yes… one… two… wait. The other girl. I wondered about that and checked what should be this woman’s room. Empty… well, a storage room. I stepped back into the kitchen and casually mentioned our roommate’s name. She looked at me oddly, puzzled in fact. She did not know what I was talking about. I nodded and apologized. I told her I was channeling some other life. Ironically, it was actually true this time.

Her best friend, at least the best friend that I knew of was not here. They never met, or she never existed. Either way, she was not a part of her… our lives. In a way, I was saddened. In another, I was relieved. Things between she and I were always... strained at best. I turned and asked another foolish question I realized I had the answer to. “What year is this?”

She pulled back her long, black hair trying to keep it out of the food while looking at me as if I were lost. “What do you mean by that?”

“Could you answer the question?” I asked. She was getting irritated. Great, I knew what that meant, or did I? She answered, and it did not surprise me. It was almost the present. I began to understand this place. The deviation was slim, but enough to keep us together. Was that the price for our happiness? Her best friend not even a memory. Well, I did not like her that much… but I was feeling guilty at any rate. I did not understand why, especially since I deserved a little happiness. Plenty of people got to be happy at my expense throughout my life, why not me?

“Why not me…” I muttered, just enough for her to hear.

“Why not you what?” she asked, a little concern in her voice. She stepped away from the stove and closer to me.

“I’m not sure you’d understand… really. I don’t myself.”

“We’ve been over this before. You can tell me anything, especially if you are having issues again with… “

“Trust me…that’s not it. “ I interjected quickly. It had nothing to do with our past issues, sort of. “I…”

“What, then?” she asked quietly.

I looked at her and saw… a glimmer of… tomorrow. I saw us, but not us. I kept looking into her and within her soul. The soul I always knew. I saw the person I shared so much with and cared for so long. I felt… awareness as if it was tangible and I could grasp it. I instead grasped her lightly and she looked into me.

“I remember…”

The core of her being remembered with me. All that I had seen, all that I had known, all that I would be was hers. Regardless of the pain we had caused each other, we always had a bond that I could not understand. Was this it? What was she? Time melted into a place without barriers, a world I understood… what I had given up to become.

We could not speak. We did not need to. I simply kissed her good-bye.


My backpack felt light. I felt light. I wandered the cavernous halls of the College, looking for the right room, even though it would be were it should. Still, I did my best to remember only what I needed, lest I be overwhelmed. The students paid me little heed, and some gave me some deference due to my age. In truth, I looked about as young as I did so many years ago when… well, when all that business occurred. In reality, I did not know, nor want to know how old I was. I suppose I could figure it out, but I had better things to do. Classes were starting to let out and I fought through the crowds scurrying to where they needed to be. I smiled, wishing I could impart to them… anything. But what would it change? I laughed aloud at the answer.

305… the lecture letting out. I leaned inside the doorway as the students continued to filter past. I nodded politely to them and they continued on their way. A few stopped to ask questions of the lecturer and she answered to the best of her knowledge. She did not see me, and turned to erase some notes on Chaucer from the board. She struggled a little, but she was getting older. Closer to 50, I thought. Her hair was still black, not dyeing it burgundy anymore it seemed. Did it really matter? The answer, as always, amused me.

“Excuse me, Professor…” I said in my worst impression of my old Texas accent. “Ah’m lookin’ for this here history department in this dang fancy College. “ She paused for a moment, then answered.

“That’s another college. Which history department, anyway?”

“Medieval, of course”, I said in my normal, flat accent. She turned quickly, not really surprised, but pleased.

We stood for a moment, not quite sure what to say. I walked into the lecture hall and reached out to her. We held each other for awhile, and I could feel her tears against my cheek. “I really wondered... if you would ever show. “, she said quietly.

“I know this sounds odd, but I got lost. “

“Oxford is confusing… oh… that kind of lost.”

She laughed, and leaned up to kiss my cheek. I smiled and kissed her back.“Yeah. I’d love to tell you about it after I get settled in. Maybe over some dinner?”

“Sure. Just call my office and we’ll set it up.”, she said. I started to agree, then decided.

“Come to think of it, I’m settled now. Shall we?” I outstretched my hand to her. She took it and we exited the lecture hall, talking of our fantastic days together, nights apart and the times in-between. She asked of my travels and the wonders I had encountered. I considered for a moment, then said, “Better I show you… “

Her eyes widened, and with a grin I…


To be continued in tomorrow's post.


Introduction to Alternate Lives

I decided to post this brief introduction to the story that will follow in two parts. I am breaking it up because it naturally follows the format, and it is rather long. Originally, I did not want to post it because of the length, but after posting 'Oblivion', and the fact I have mentioned this to others on more than one occasion, I have decided to go ahead and post it. I am probably going to reduce the font a little, so I can save some space.

One other thing I forgot to mention. Originally, the story was only the first part (the next post) minus the prologue, but due to the nature of alternate lives and realities, I came up with an alternate ending, hence part II. The story, on its own I think stands well without part II, but I like the philosophical questions that I ask in the culmination of the story and is tuly, a metaphor for my own journey through the realms of idealism, romance, pragmatism, regret, and acceptance.

Do enjoy and thanks in advance for reading,


16 January 2007


For all the mean game I talk about writing, I have not posted anything (fictional at least) other than my poems. Admittedly, scripts would be difficult to post as would my longer stories, unless I broke them up (which is certainly a possibility in the future). But for today, I leave you with a short-short piece of fan fiction from my favorite sci-fi show (and my only piece of fan fiction), Babylon 5. For those that know the story, it is pretty obvious where and when it takes place, and is sort of a combined perspective from the episode and one of the novels (The Technomage Trilogy). It is a little more internalised, which is harder to get in TV and certainly a departure from what I have normally written. For those that do not know the story, I admit it really does not stand on its own as it takes a fragment of the end of the third season episode 'Z'Ha'Dum' and expands upon it, if one calls something this short expansion :)


He finally understood…

If you go to Z’Ha’Dum, you will die.

John knew the price, standing above the chasm, the Enemy behind him, calling his name. The Enemy, his wife, but not his wife. A monster, pulled from one of those Ships… a shell of the woman she was. They told her what to say, and the lie was almost convincing… almost. The Enemy closed around him, behind her, their glowing eyes, yearning for him to join them. Join… the Shadows. They asked him to turn his back on everything. His family, friends, his duty, her… the woman that Anna was, and the one, now… racing in his mind. He only wanted to be with her, but that would not be. They would kill him, and Kosh, as usual, would be right.

Damn them… If I’m going to die, then you bastards are going to hell with me.

He sent the signal…

It would be over in a moment, not that the Shadows would know. Not that he would feel. An instant of destruction, and the war… would it end? What would his sacrifice be worth? Enough to save Babylon 5? Surely the Shadows and their terrible vessels would be poised to strike, for John refused to join the Enemy. They would destroy the station and all he held dear. At least the Enemy would feel this sting.

They continued to close on him, though one of the creatures had stopped, occupied for some reason. Then it fell, and John could not understand why. He thought he saw a.... no, it did not matter. He saw her face, smiling, but her countenance betraying the control of her masters. She would kill him herself if she could. He knew he could stop her, but no matter what she had become, John could never kill Anna. He glanced skyward. At least... not face to face.

Any second now.

Another Shadow fell from behind Anna. Again, he thought he should have been confused, his tactician’s brain telling him something… someone else was at work. Unfortunately, his human instinct told him the end would soon render the thought moot.

He turned away from her and stared into the abyss…


What… that voice. Piercing into his soul, but from where? How? Impossible. He had held the remnants of the encounter suit in his hands, even spoken to him before he passed. Kosh perished so that the fledgling Alliance would survive, ordering a strike against the Shadows at the cost of his own life.

He glanced into the darkness. It tore at him, but called to him somehow. Still, he was afraid. She advanced toward him, begging him to reconsider. He tried to blot her voice out, but he had loved her so. No, not her. A monster, created by them… the Enemy. His link beeped. The White Star was coming.

Jump… Now!

He jumped…

John felt the voice leap at him, literally drawing him over the ledge and into the darkness. Anna’s voice faded, and he said his final goodbyes. The chasm looked like it would not end, and continued to speak to him, in His voice somehow. Above, the world sounded as if it shattered. Screams… no. The White Star… its engines howling, preparing to unleash the thermonuclear fury contained within. Though fear encircled him, John forced a smile. He almost wanted to see it happen, but imagining was enough, and the reality would consume him all too soon.

Or would it?

He welcomed the abyss…

The voice fell silent. Only the darkness remained. He could not even hear what he thought he might. He must have been too close, destroyed in an instant. Or was he? Images raced through his mind… images of yesterday, the present, tomorrow… even if tomorrow would not be. He saw her… all that he knew, could hold on to, in the descent into the beyond.


Oblivion claimed John in the abyss beneath Z’Ha’Dum.


15 January 2007

The Female Soul

Continuing my thoughts on relationships and people gone, though many of those thoughts are in older posts, I am keenly interested in the concept of the soul and how it connects us in whatever capacity we want it to be. In the case of the following poem, I wrote it as a response to another(and in response to a particular format), but I think it certainly stands on its own, and is effectively my take on what a relationship might and could be.

'The Female Soul'

My soul, borne of starlight,
Reaching toward a moment,
Sensing your heart.

My heart, gentle in spirit,
Giving though burdened,
Needing your touch.

Your dreams, tender yet yearning,
Soothing a turbulent mind,
Freeing my heart.

Your heart, enfolding and warm,
Loving even in discontent,
Nurturing my soul.


13 January 2007

A Small Beach Outside Of Sydney

The following is one of my oldest poems I am alright with sharing with others, written not long after I got home from Sydney the first time in 1992. I had been meaning to add it anyways, but other entries and other details simply got in the way. Another entry of mine touched on this earlier, but dealt with a person revisiting the issue with hindsight. This poem still feels raw, more in the present than anything.

Oh, for any Aussies or those familiar with Sydney, the beach mentioned is actually Queenscliff, but I've visited the majority of the ocean beaches, and I am quite fond of all of them.

'That Small Beach Outside of Sydney'

Do you remember that small beach outside of Sydney?
Walking where waves caressed the fine sand.
We laughed and passed away our cares
Just to the North, toward the Broken Bay,
I know it was that small beach outside of Sydney.

We sat... watching the sun rise
Feeling the warmth course into our hearts.
I was happy, lying in the morning sun
Holding you in my arms, never wanting to let you go.

I did, though.
We did.

It was for the best we both agree;
Our lives taking different paths.
We said goodbye on that small beach outside
Of Sydney.

On the plane,
I watched the skyline melt into the sea.
I focused on a small piece of earth,
Just to the North, toward the Broken Bay...
Outside of Sydney.


12 January 2007

Belvoir St. Typecasting Blues

It is possible and probable I have mentioned some of my theatre experiences, limited though they may have been. I was thinking about them the other day, and rather bore everyone with a long, detailed post of all the things I have done, I figured I would impart some bullet point wisdom of my experiences in condensed form. But first, a tiny bit of background. Most of my work occurred from 1990-1998 and not all years then and I have worn pretty much every hat in the business except costume designer and make up (though I can do my own make-up, pretty easy for men). Mainly, my background is in acting, directing, writing and producing. I have written a couple of one-act plays, though I have lost my favorite one and need to write it again some day (a then homage now tribute to Douglas Adams and other science fiction writers), but never actually directed them. Strangely, my writing includes dramatic criticism and I won an award for it at a festival I originally was not going to attend. Even though I have not been in a production in several years, I would like to revisit the stage in some capacity, simply for the enjoyment. And I think, if finances ever suited, I would like to open my own theatre someday as well. As for the rest, I offer what few pearls of wisdom I can and perhaps a few anecdotes from those strange and enjoyable days.

1) You never know when you might be working with a future Academy Award winner: In 1992, while at the University of New South Wales, I managed an internship at the Belvoir St. Theatre in Sydney. I had already done one production that fall (more on that later) and was attempting another that wound up falling through, and was rather keen on seeing what this production was all about. It was an adaptation of Aristophanes' Frogs that was written in Aussie vernacular. Basically, my job boiled down to doing whatever the production company wanted me to do and I pretty much learned a great deal than I had ever known about lighting, sound, set design, stage management, rehearsals and blocking in those 9 weeks. As it turned out, the cast was delightful, and far more professional than my experiences in theatre had led me to believe. During rehearsals, when I was not assisting in manual labor (like building the set, putting up lights, etc), I got to know some of the cast, and of course the director, Geoffrey, who wound up winning an Oscar for his performance in Shine, and has been brilliant in most everything I've seen him in. Oh, also in Frogs was a young woman named Toni, who became known for her role in The Sixth Sense and, more recently, Little Miss Sunshine.

2) You never know when your real accent will be considered a poor imitation of said accent: While it is true I have a very flat accent for an American, and therefore non-existent as a Texan (which has helped at times overseas), I should hardly think I sound like I am trying to put on an American accent, especially when I was using my normal speaking voice. Admittedly, some have mistaken me for a Canadian or Californian, but I would have thought my continuous use of y'all in conversation would at least give away something. In any event, I was in another Greek play when I was in Australia so many moons ago, and we were doing the less humorous Medea, and I had the part of the tutor of Medea's sons. From a historical point of view, my accent should have fit since in Greek times, many foreigners were used as tutors of nobility. However, one of the musicians relayed to me at the wrap party that a friend of his, in a very authoritative way, complained that my American accent was so fake. The musician then replied 'Really? That's so funny to know, considering he's from Dallas'. Needless to say, the lad's smugness dissolved faster than a slug in the Dead Sea.

3) Injuries and emergencies: You never know... Sometimes an injury or emergency surgery can change a performance, lose you a part, or force some serious improvisation. In my case, I have been the beneficiary of all three, if one can call it that. During the casting for a musical called Little Me (made famous for Sid Ceasar's performance as all the main male parts), I suffered through an emergency surgery (the details are not important except for the fact it was exceedingly painful) that forced me to miss the end of the auditions, although I had read well for one particular part that I had expected to get.(so well that almost the entire cast, even the guy who eventually got the part agreed I was best for it) I failed to call in the next day for class and the final auditions (silly me, I was unconscious from the pain), so the director/professor gave the part to someone else, who was a better singer no doubt. In the end, I wound up with multiple 'accented' parts (meaning I did something like 6 accents in the play, sort of a running gag), which to me, turned out to be more fun in the end.

When doing Romeo and Juliet, my best friend had the parts of Romeo and Mercutio on alternating nights, and I was playing Balthasar, his faithful manservant, so Ihad more dialogue with him than any other person I was involved with, including an important scene in the last act. During the third act one night, just after Romeo kills Tybalt, Benvolio is supposed to rush him off stage. In a fit of adrenaline, the Benvolio pushed a little too hard causing Adam to severely sprain his knee (he later found he had a slight ACL tear I think). Thankfully, we had an intermission, but he was in excruciating pain during the rest of the performance, shortening the play considerably. In the early fifth act, about all he could say was 'I defy you stars!' negating any pertinent information I was supposed to tell him... I will tell you improving iambic pentameter is rough. He gutted it out and finished the run, though we had to modify his fight scenes some due to his knee.

4) You never know when you have to direct a play that has already been cast: 'Grease: You're the One that I Want' notwithstanding, in theatre, the director makes all the casting decisions (unlike say, film). However, I had just finished one play and was requested to direct another at the behest of the writer of the play I had just directed. The problem the play was already cast and I had to begin immediately (I had not quite 5 weeks of rehearsal). Being masochistic back then (1998), I agreed and embarked on one of my more bizarre theatrical experiences. First off, the cast was not quite what I wanted, but I had no choice, since I was lucky that the whole play was cast. It had 15 parts (and all 15 had to be on stage at once) I think, and that was immense for a one-act. So, I did the best I could, but with all the school schedule conflicts and such, the only time we could rehearse was after 10pm at night, and I even had to deal with conflicts on the day of dress rehearsals (so I turned our tech into a full dress to help those who had to miss), and since the conflicts were school conflicts, I had to deal with it. Secondly, the staging was tricky because it was set in a high school classroom and I was in a thrust stage, therefore someone was always going to have their back to the audience. Thankfully, I was able to minimize it, and the play turned out pretty well... in fact, had a full house both nights. I admit, I was pretty proud of the show all things considered.

5) Finally, I think Stage Combat Instructors are jealous of Fencers: In stage combat, the object is to make a deadly art look flashy. In fencing, the idea is to 'kill' your opponent. Needless to say, Stage Combat people don't care for fencers that much, mostly because it is tricky to unlearn your footwork. Either way, I am sure it is jealousy :)

That should cover the high(and low)lights of a sort, and I am still fond of the experiences. Maybe I will return to the stage in some respect one day.