Friday, August 21, 2009

Sweet Dreams

It's not the money, it's not the loss of an effin lifestyle, it's the separation from those you love. You can't sleep, so you listen to music and stare at the darkest corner of the room. The chorus sings, "Va', pensiero, sull'ali dorate..." and you begin to cry, you too feel exiled, you too feel a longing to return to a homeland worthy of grand opera. Look at you, lying there in the sweaty night. So close to self-pity. Pathetic.

Screw those big 19th century romantic sentiments. You're an American boy. Let it wash over you,
Drown in My Own Tears, Jeff Beck bending those strings, playing chicken with the feedback through a bank of stacked Marshall bottoms, another white man's blues. Maybe it doesn't make you feel better, but it sure drowns out your own tears. Like vodka, once you get past the first few swallows. Telling you, "C'mon, you're an American boy, you can eat dirt and shite diamonds if you want to."

Who you gonna take your cues from? The spider crawling down the wall? Imagine if they could see you now, the ones who departed early, who never complained, who lost everything, the ones you loved when you were a boy, imagine if they could see you lying there, tears pouring down your face, crumpled in two, your whole body shaking, like an animal scared of thunder, hiding under the bed. Remember your mother pleading with you not to be so melodramatic?

The boy's wings have melted and he is falling to Earth. He is falling to his death. You're not him. The image isn't right. Nor is there consolation in remembering that Joyce was frightened of thunder too.

The poet said, things are not important, it's the relationship between things. At this late hour, the best you can do is search your memory. Maybe you buried something up there you can put to use. Something practical, unromantic, objectively real. Forget music, music will only make you worse. What you want is something that will prevent you from ever giving yourself over emotionally to a job again. Ever.


  1. Paul, I've been following your posts for a while now. And I just want to say I think you're a damn fine writer.