Monday, November 2, 2009

Imagine



"They danced down the streets like dingledodies, and I shambled after as I've been doing all my life after people who interest me, because the only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones that never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn..."  Jack Kerouac, On the Road

Imagine this.
You live for one day.
In this one-day life memory is obsolete, aspiration is unnecessary, and reality is relative.
Because it is winter on your day, you will never know spring, or summer, or fall.
You will eat three meals, but it will not matter what you are eating because you will not remember what you ate anyway.
You will make love once, with momentary passion, but you will not understand what you are doing or why you are doing it.
And when you lay down and close your eyes to sleep, it will be your first time, and your last.
But none of this will matter.
You will be oblivious, unaware.
Remember.
You live for one day.
And in this one-day life memory is obsolete, aspiration is unnecessary, and knowledge is nonexistent.

Are you mad? you ask.
Have you lost it?
It must be the Fates determined you incapable of making decisions and so took decision-making out of your hands.
Your words give me pause.
It is true that while others sought knowledge I was seeking adventure.
While others sought wealth I was seeking pleasure.
While others sought stability I was seeking banality.
I lived like Kerouac.
Stolen moments in stolen cars.
Getting my highs out of watching others burn burn burn.
And those were the choices I made.
When I could make choices.
But now I clap my palm upon my mouth and weep while the wind wails.
Now I am older.
So have I earned the right to become a tyrant?
Have I earned the right to say what I want without having people ask How? and Why?
Have I earned the right to hurl insults like I'm flinging a fistful of broken buttons out of a window?
And to march to the head of the line?
I have watched those who have tried before me fall on their faces.
And I have laughed at them, along with everyone else who laughed.
They walked with a swagger, with an I've been around and I know something over you kind of manner.
But when they fell they did not rise again.

You speak so proudly of being "alone".
"Independent" is the mot de rigueur.
But when the word "lonely" is mentioned you bite your tongue and roll up your eyes so your tears don't spill over and tumble down your cheeks and give you away.

If I told you I talk to myself because I have no one to talk to, would you think me mad?
If I told you I am driven by fear because I cannot drive it, would you think me mad?

I should ignore the widow next door when she cries over the bloodspots on her dead husband's uniform.
I should ignore the child next door when he plays soldiers with his dead daddy's loaded rifle.
I should be happy with cellophane hints of admiration meant to comfort temporarily, not to satisfy permanently.
I should be happy with diamond glints of silver hair meant to wisen slowly, not to terrify poundingly.
Yet my Self seeks to stand out in a crowd, and, when passing a looking glass, to not see a gothic distortion.

I dream that I fly, and as I soar higher, my wings vanish.
I dream of men before a firing squad being promised their lives will be spared if they eat a meal, but when they come to eat the succulent meat they are served, their mouths disappear.
I dream of pulling out a gray hair only to have ten others grow in its place.

I think I will go walk along the mirage, now - there are no rivers in this one-day existence.
Perhaps I will stop for a moment and admire a prickly cactus.
Perhaps I will buy me a roasted cob of corn from an imaginary vendor and gnaw it with my toothless gums.
Perhaps I will chase down the mirages before they fool me with their shimmer and shine.
Perhaps I will wait for others to find me, though I will be waiting and waiting and waiting.

We learn so many things in this existence, but then, we learn nothing at all.

27 comments:

  1. SO honest and clean. A truth. Thank you.

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  2. That is some concept, if we only lived for one day! Quite a marvelous thing you wrote.

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  3. Wow, very insightful and painful. I loved it. I see you are reading The Cornish Trilogy. I read all his books several years ago. I loved them!

    They kept me company in London.

    much love

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  4. Nevine, you just keep getting better and better. This is an excellent piece, it really highlights the fears people have of getting older and of dreams disappearing. I felt every word.

    Jai

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  5. 'Imagine this.
    You live for one day.
    In this one-day life memory is obsolete, aspiration is unnecessary, and reality is relative.
    Because it is winter on your day, you will never know spring, or summer, or fall.
    You will eat three meals, but it will not matter what you are eating because you will not remember what you ate anyway.
    You will make love once, with momentary passion, but you will not understand what you are doing or why you are doing it.
    And when you lay down and close your eyes to sleep, it will be your first time, and your last.
    But none of this will matter.
    You will be oblivious, unaware.
    Remember.
    You live for one day.
    And in this one-day life memory is obsolete, aspiration is unnecessary, and knowledge is nonexistent.'

    Welcome to the life of a moth.

    On a more serious note, I loved the honesty of your post. Essentially it is the individuality of our existence vs our role in a collective. If life was to be lived in just one day, you would eliminate disappointment and frustration. You just go to bed and don't wake up again. On sexual passion, I disagree, you might or might not have that fervour because as they say in German 'Ubung Macht Den Meister', practice makes the master. And so bereft of a follow-up to that one, you will try this activity in the same way you will eat those three meals, with a mix of trepidation and curiosity.

    This was a cracking post and as someone who considers 'On The Road' one of the most pivotal novels ever written, I loved the allusion to it. Many thanks.

    Greetings from London.

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  6. Nevine,
    Is this from your imagination, or, are you a very good assimilator of others thoughts? Are you peeking in my mind or plucking my thoughts out of the air? I’ll begin with this whisper ---

    “every thing in my life is the same. There is no joy, there’s just pain. There are no smiles on this old face, and I can’t even cry, so I wonder to myself, why don’t I just lay down and die?”

    I think I am going to take a step back from the computer and see what choice I make this time; living in darkness, light escapes me. I am going to give myself one day to live, and see if I like it enough to live another one.

    As it stands --- you are a marvel. Thank you for this one, it might very well save what's left of my .... life!

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  7. One of the best, I have read from you...

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  8. That was so insightful, Nevine!
    Fabulous writing style too.
    P.S.
    Please check out my tomorrow's post about the given awards.
    hugs hugs

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  9. another mesmerizing pieces, nevine! just beautiful in all ways!

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  10. Suzy - "Clean" - I like that. And thank you!

    Secretia - A bit of a stifling thought, maybe? Or liberating? We'd have no complications, really. Thank you, Secretia!

    Stacey - Somehow, insightful and painful always manage to go hand in hand. And I'm loving The Cornish Trilogy as well; it's right up my alley.

    Jai - It's good to see you back here again. I know it's a challenge for you, right now, so I really appreciate your visit. And thanks for the lovely comment.

    Cuban - But there would be no time to practice, no? And no memory of what we're doing? But wait - all perspectives welcome, here! My one-day life would be memory-free. Yours, you might choose otherwise. "On the Road" - Ah! I first read it in high school, and I've never stopped reading it. Some say it's a man's book. I disagree. I think it's a human's book. Thank you for your "always make me dig deeper" comments.

    Amias - Now you're scaring me. No, I'm not peeking into your life at all! Really!!! I just like to peek at life in general and see how people experience it and perceive it. I am a watcher. And a listener. Some would call that "nosy". I prefer the word "curious". I love life and I love people and I love to dig under the surface and try and find out what's really going on. As for you, Amias, I'm happy to know my writing touches you personally, and I hope, in a non-invasive way.

    Turquoise - I appreciate that very much.

    Betty - Thank you and I will be sure to stop in tomorrow.

    Gypsywoman - I'm very happy you liked it. Thank you much!

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  11. Nevine, you can't help it if you are good at what you do, observation and love of life, I have come to discover, makes successful writers. The fact that I can see myself in a lot of your writing is not a bad thing --- as a matter of fact it's really helping in more ways then I care to say --- and I thank you for it. The one thing I pride myself on is open and honest dialogue --- and not hiding behind a lie. Like I said, you are a marvel, and that's the truth!

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  12. Amias, I do appreciate your honesty. Tremendously! I also like that my writing is real enough for you to see yourself in it - I always try for that. And most importantly, in whatever capacity what you are reading here is helping you, what I get from you and all others who care to comment honestly is truly priceless. From it, I grow. You're a treasure. Have a lovely day, Amias!

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  13. we learn so much yet nothing at all. how contradictory, yet how true. lovely lovely writing nevine!

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  14. To chase the ones who burn, burn, burn is different than being the ones who burn. Maybe those are the people who smolder.

    It's a strange existence to glow, to smoke, but not have the abandon to actually ignite. Somehow, though, I think that the smolderers have a way of being most mesmerizing of all. It just doesn't feel that way to them--the watchers who want to be seen.

    I need to read Kerouac.

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  15. Nevine you write so beautifully.

    You write so magically.

    I sit in a little trance while I read what you write, while the wind weeps.

    love Renee xoxo

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  16. You write so very beautifully.

    Thankyou for your kind words, this is all new to me and to receive kind words from somebody who is so very good at creating wonderful imagery is welcome indeed!

    Laura
    x

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  17. Shadow - Thank you for that sweet comment.



    Jason - Interesting word "smolderer". It captures that type of personality exactly. Kerouac is yes yes yes on my list. Especially "On the Road". I think it might be one of those books that you will keep reading and reading and reading. It has been for me.



    Renee - Being in a trance is such a lovely feeling, isn't it? :-)

    Laura - Thank you and welcome! And know that I only say what I mean.

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  18. love the tension you create and maintin here, all the way through the end - never quite pushing back, but never giving up an inch - and how you internalize all that is going on around you - from watching all the others to drilling down through your shoulds and your dreams. it's like a defense, but not defensive. that's amazing.

    also, i think "Stolen moments in stolen cars" would make an excellent book title. for almost any kind of book.

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  19. As a wave your writing washes over me and I am wet and cold but I don't know why.

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  20. Joaquin - "... a defense, but not defensive." I like that. It captures my character's personal insecurity within his larger secure knowledge of the outside world. I also agree about the "Stolen moments in stolen cars." How come I didn't think of that? I always enjoy your comments, Joaquin; it seems you get exactly what it is I'm trying to say. Thank you.

    Trée - I appreciate your comment immensely. Although I am somewhat hurting for you, Trée - wet and cold is a lonely place to be. Please don't let that keep you away. Your visits are always welcome!

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  21. What an awesome phrase: "Have I earned the right to hurl insults like I'm flinging a fistful of broken buttons out of a window?"

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  22. Nevine-The truth you speak at the end is the one thing learned that swallows all above. That was Solomon's conclusion when he said all is vanity and what is there for man but to eat drink and be merry. A sad truth to learn but any other way of living is a sham. catch 22
    You said more here than even you know. Excellent. ~rick

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  23. Elisabeth - Thank you for your visit, and for your comment. Both are appreciated.

    Rick - Solomon and Plato and Kerouac, apparently. Different times and different people, but sharing one view of the human element, either through their words or through their own living example. "You said more here than even you know." How honest and true is that? Your comments are always so direct, and because they are so, they are always treasured. Thank you, Rick.

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  24. oh how true that last line stays...an imaginative write, very creative. I like to think in todays society, there is no right or wrong, the things one does 'differently' only makes them that much more unique and admirable

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  25. Kay - I agree with you entirely. The problem is that most people believe they really need to conform and fit into a certain mold, and they waste precious time from their lives trying to do that, unsuccessfully. Hence, the thought of having one day to live... what would we do with it?

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  26. Nevine, I believe you are a modern day sage(tte). Full of variegated dreams and convictions, ever churning in your mind. Viewing the world on a different plane than most. This piece is full of deep-seeded musings which remind me of a quote, "Life is made of millions of moments, but we live only one of these moments at a time."

    Thanks for stopping by and complimenting me blog :)

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  27. What a wonderful thing to say, She Poet, and coming from such a great writer as yourself. My mind is always busy, always tired, always sad. But I have a happy heart. So things balance out. And your new blog really is looking very cool! :)

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Your thoughts are deeply appreciated.