Tag Archives: sadness

“When chaos reigns upon the earth, maybe then I’ll have nothing to lose…”

Well, I absconded from posting yesterday’s recording here, due to its exceedingly personal and some might say explicit content. But the enterprising listener, I’m sure, will be able to hunt it down, because it’s out there.

Today’s the Seventh, and our recording is about shyness and loneliness and introversion.

Cave Hands

Every day I promise myself that I’ll try
Not to be so alone inside
My head which is where I prefer to be
And if the angels way up high
In their wide white sky
Decide to look down on me, then I
Hope that with their light
They’d send some peace

And I admit I’m dressed for the wrong solstice
Seasonal Dyslexia I suffer from
But that don’t explain
The tremble in my hands

And as the predator awaits with twitching tail
And salivating maw
Before the burrow of his scented prey
I fear the moment that I step outside
My patchwork slipshod shell that I’ll
Be set upon by internecine grief

And I admit most days I think nothing of
The outside world
I’m content to paint pictures of buffalo
Beside outlines of my hands

And as the wetted stone reveals its colors true
And yet when it dries
Appears to be a drab, unlustrous thing
I too abscond from drama’s wheel, and anger’s hold
That they wont magnify
The two or three realnesses in me

And I pray each night anonymously
That the Lord of Hosts won’t identify
This supplicant
Who hides his light
Between two tight-clasped hands

And at the End of Days
When Saints descend, and Chaos reigns
Upon the earth
Maybe then I’ll have nothing to lose
And I’ll step out from my cave, with what I’ve found
Held up high within my hands
And there declare the triumph of the peace

And I’ll search for you through the forests charred
And the harbors dried
And if I find you beneath a pile of
Broken toys
I’ll save you with these hands

“Like teeth spilled from the sky’s broken jaw…”

I’m challenging myself to record one song each day this month, as a part of The MayDayChallenge. Here’s number one:

  • “Moldy Drywall”
  • Where the nail hung into / the moldy drywall
    I hung the icon / of the blessed virgin
    Her tears bled my breast / of its self pity
    No more will I succumb
    To the want of my impotent heart
  • I lay my back upon / the dusty hardwood
    My eyes found escape / through the curvéd skylight
    The lightning carved lines / betwixt the red clouds
    The earth drew the rain
    Like teeth from the sky’s broken jaw
  • Sleep crept toward me from / the furthest corner
    I turned my head to view / the encroaching shadow
    My throat offered up / an Ave Mary
    As the silt of forgetfulness
    Swallowed whole my dissolute self
  • In dreams madness swelled / with salty vengeance
    Rusted centipedes danced / on bleeding parchment
    I felt my lust and hate / gather hot beneath me
    My devils clamored
    While angels drained the pitch from my veins

Women and God

Man’s understanding of the Universe begins and ends with women.

The theist will proclaim God in his deepest and most meaningful voice, but he cannot deny he is often befuddled by the woman that he lives with.

And the atheist will systematically deconstruct the notion of an afterlife, the notion of a sentient higher power, but he can’t control his fingers when he sees a woman that he wants.

Only in the glimpse that is arrived at, in the moment of giving himself to her fully, does a man begin to understand life.

Existentialism and Children’s Music

After reading an internet discussion about post-modern art appreciation, I began thinking about a song I had written, ostensibly for children, about tragedy and death — and I felt prompted whip up some thoughts on “suitability” and “morbidity” in children’s entertainment.

Here are the lyrics and a music player that should work. Feel free to skip ahead to the chatter, if poetry and music bog you down (there is no shame in this!)

Boom boom, shakin’ the broom
Upside mama’s tomb
It’s true she died too soon
Boom boom shakin the broom (x2)

Then my dad, he went mad
Had to wear a straight jacket
And in the ward he had a heart attack
And its so sad dad had gone mad (x2)

Then my sis, she got kissed
By a man who was like a tempest
She tried to run but he wouldn’t be dissed
And he took her to his mountain fortress (x2)

Then my bro, he got low
Sorta disappeared in the snow
And where he went I still don’t know
If you see him would you give him this note (x2)

And as for me, as you can see
I’ve avoided that tragedy
That has claimed my family
But I’ve been runnin’ til I run outta steam (x2)


The question is: is there a place for morbidity in a child’s diet? Is there a place for sadness, depression and anger? There certainly has been — it is only in this past century that fairytales have been spayed, neutered, dethorned, and shaved of all bristles. And while I’m not against pre-chewed food for those who can’t eat steak — I have always been a little edgy, in my relationship with kids. I chide, I kid, I say things how I see them, even if it is a bit brash. On the other hand, when I come into contact with children’s media that is more pessimistic (read: mean) than wry, I find myself thinking: “You guys can do better than that.” But it’s the bitterness and not the depth or tragedy that I dislike.

Who will say that a kid does not understand, even a bit, what loss is. Sure, they do not obsess over death like they would a favored piece of molded plastic, but from simple observation you can see that every child experiences every part of the emotional spectrum, almost as if they were required to. An autodidactic Emotional Education, where the playground is both the locker-room, shower and racetrack.

So the—not problem, but speed bump, maybe, isn’t the kids. It’s us, the adults: we put the moral weight upon not just actions but experiences, we approve or disapprove, steering them clear as well we can from death, abuse, calamities of the mind and isolation and everything deemed “heavy” and “difficult.” We assume that these experiences are the dividing line between innocence and experience. Between what makes the child “pure” and the adult “jaded”.

And I do not know if that’s really the case. I mean, I believe that it’s unhealthy to wallow and brood over shame and rage and sorrow, and yet when we are taken up in those states, when life brings hardship, it is necessary to fully feel those things. Not to run from them or suppress them, but, in the very least, to be present with them. Acknowledgement — an honest and exacting measurement of the state we are actually in — is the first step toward recovery. True recovery, not a temporal plastering of the levy, but feeling the full furloughing flood, and building the dyke back up when the waves have washed out.

(A Jung quote comes to mind: “Neurosis is the avoidance of necessary suffering.”)

So perhaps this song is a “special purposes” song, not for regular day-to-day use, but for times when consolation and commiseration seem impossible.

In summation: When the darkness is at its deepest, maybe it’s best not to ignore it, or forcibly drowned it out with faux-joy and psuedo-smiles, but rather to sing along with it, until a chance wind comes through and clears it away.