all together in the end

The fog, heavy upon the land, stifled movement and choked what little light there was.  Even the moon, full and majestic, did little to break the grasp of the dense blanket of dew.  While the metal walls shielded me from the cold and damp, my bones still ached from them.  Everything but time was dulled and slow.  My joints throbbed in time to the seams of the road.

Thump-thump.  Thump-thump.  Thump-thump.

I scanned the darkness in search of lurking dangers.  The view from my cage on wheels was distorted through the layers of fog.  Other cars could have been inches away and they might have gone unnoticed.  Pedestrians and bikers would have been invisible completely.  I scanned the darkness and was plagued by doubt.  Was I in control or was that just an illusion of hope?  My heart beat furiously in my chest.

Thump-thump.  Thump-thump.  Thump-thump.

The sounds of the drive were all wrong.  The water heavy air absorbed all, robbing me of the clarity in all senses I might have had otherwise.  Not quite all, though, as the most sinister of pitches slipped through unblemished to plague my worries.  I adjusted the stereo to cover my fears and music blared through the speakers around me.  I joined my voice in song as the drumline rattled my cage.

Thump-thump.  Thump-thump.  Thump-thump.

They say that things are often darkest before the light, and in those moments well before sunrise with the night dimmed further by the thick fog, I dreamt of bursting free of my isolation as the sun peeked over the horizon.  I dreamt of driving into the fire while the dew burned away in splashes of golden red.  I dreamt of stepping clear of my cage to revel in the glory of another new day.  The fears gnawing on my thoughts fell away and the rhythm of my heart slowed to match the beat of the music.

Thump-thump.  Thump-thump.  Thump-thump.

My driving dreams did not come to fruition, of course, as the world often failed the expectations of my imagination, but the fog did dispel, relinquishing its grasp on my senses.  The full moon, directly overhead, exploded light onto the fields around me.  My aching bones ceased their complaints.  The sounds of the morning returned.  My sight returned as well.  It was early still and the day had plenty of time to bloom glorious.  The music, my heart, and the road came together in anticipation.

Thump-thump.  Thump-thump.  Thump-thump.

what is it for you?

Image Credit: Studded Hearts

The light flashed across the slick blacktop, blinding for an instant before sliding away on its ever revolving path.  It would strike me three more times before I passed it by.  Four moments of sightless travel on a rain soaked journey through the darkness.  Is it faith, experience, or naiveté that carries me through those moments fearlessly?

The boy child from the equator has woken grumpy from his years-long nap.  The tantrum he shall unleash will cause mudslides, spinouts, fallen limbs and trees.  There will be damage and chaos, though he will take no delight in that aspect of it.  The child is too immature to know anything beyond whatever emotion currently holds sway.  My journey will intersect with his fussiness several times in the coming days and months.  Is it faith, experience, or naiveté that allows me to face each new drive without fear?

The future beckons from the horizon.  The world spins towards it but will never catch it.  The unknowns, the mysteries, the triumphs and the tragedies all remain elusively hidden just beyond our sight.  I will never know what twists and turns are waiting for me, but I venture out anyway. Is it faith, experience, or naiveté that fuels my fear free actions?

Or, is it something else?  A sense of responsibility?  A need to please those around me?  An ideal I’m striving for?

We face countless decisions each day that dictate the urgency with which we travel our unique paths and how close we allow those paths to veer towards danger.  And most of those decisions we make without actually giving any weighty thought to: driving cars, the food we eat and drink, sitting at computers eight hours a day, etc…  There is inherent risk in all of it.

So, what is it that allows us to so callously ignore these dangers every day?  Is it faith?  Is it experience?  Is it naiveté?  What is it for you?

Jesterly Challenge Month – November 23rd

Dani challenged me (again) to write a spooky rhyming poem.  I quoted her a bit of The Raven, and she said “exactly.”  Well, she said something like that; I didn’t write it down.  Anyway, give the following a read and let me know how I did in the comments.


Lightning flashes and catches my eye,
As thousands of sparkling devils try,
In every rain drop gathered on the pane,
To shatter and batter my frayed nerves again.

Then the thunder strolls and rolls through,
The bones of my house shiver anew,
My teeth rattle in incessant prattle,
And fear grips and rips my heart on the mantle.

It’s there, biding and hiding, now,
Since she pulled it out, don’t ask me how,
And set it on high on a plate, like pie,
For me to stare and glare and enviously sigh.

The gaping and seeping chest wound,
Shall never heal despite time’s find tune,
And the resultant wage shall stay savage,
All the long and gone days until I’m ashes.

Be mindful and careful with trust,
Don’t give it away cheaply with lust,
Or one day it may be your heart removed,
And placed beating and dripping, your love refused.

Lightning flashes and catches my eye,
This storm will never fully pass by.
Forever I’ll quake, as my house shakes,
Forlornly and stubbornly watch my heart ache.

Jesterly Challenge Month – November 21st

Sreejit challenged me to share the secrets from the story I wrote for the challenge on November 1st, the secrets that drove the teller insane.  Read on, if you dare, and let me know what you think of the secrets in the comments.


The true power behind the five secrets isn’t necessarily in the knowledge of them, but in the manner in which they are imparted from person to person.  So, you should be fine to read them below…  But, be careful in how you spread them, if you choose to do so at all, and I take no responsibility for anything that happens as result of you reading on.  You have been warned.  The secrets of the universe are truths that do not appreciate disrespect and they will take on lives of their own if they feel they aren’t getting the proper deference.

The first secret is not much of a secret at all.  The universe is so large that none of us can truly grasp the vastness of it.  It’s in our best interest, of course, because were we to understand truly how insignificant and meaningless we are in the grand scheme of things, we would be hard pressed to keep our sanity.  However, with the telling of this secret if done correctly, the universe will share a glimpse of the spinning universes and multi-verses branching off from every point of time throughout history and forward to the infinite future.  The glimpse isn’t enough to drive you insane, but it will stop you in your tracks.

The second secret is also not much of a secret.  The emotions we experience are manufactured synaptic firings and chemical releases we have been trained to perform.  Can you hear that bell?  Did you just start to drool?  We are all salivating dogs in our own ways.  When this secret is shared correctly, however, not only can the recipient accept the truth but they can also learn to manipulate even the most hard-wired emotional responses.  This can come in very handy, but is dangerous in that it is easy to forget how to fit into societal expectations.

The third secret is where things start veer closer to the unknown.  Everything in all the universes is cyclical.  You’ve probably heard that in some fashion before: music, fashion, politics, etc…  But, the cycles affect all things across all of the universes.  When this secret is told correctly, the universe will show you a glimpse of all you’ve ever been and all you will ever be.  You experience the historical context of your past lives and see all the failings and successes of your future selves.  The knowledge is crippling to most.  Our minds are not designed to handle that type of information and will be driven insane, eventually, trying to reconcile every action taken in the current “life” against all that came before, and how it all could impact who you become.

The fourth secret takes the third to a deeper level, while simultaneously taking a step back to play on a topic you are all probably familiar with.  Everything in the world is connected.  Call it the circle of life.  Call it karma.  Call it ashes to ashes.  It doesn’t matter how you try to rationalize it, this truth will hurt.  Every ant you ever stepped on was part of you.  Every spider you ever squished was part of you.  Every fly you ever swatted.  You’ve been killing yourself for years.  Bullying.  Greed.  Fighting.  Every action you’ve taken against another person has also been against yourself.  When this secret is told correctly, the universe floods your mind with the pain you have caused throughout your current life.

The fifth secret is that the world is structured in such a way that you can ignore the previous four secrets if you want, but before the universe lets you take that option, it shows you your life as it would be if you embraced them instead.  Surprisingly, if you are one of the few who can hang on to your sanity, you do not become an empty shell just seeing out the days.  Not surprisingly, you will choose to ignore the truths anyway, because a simpler life is a better life.  Either way, the secrets can never be forgotten whether you choose to embrace them or ignore them.

So, now that you know, what are you going to do with these truths?

Jesterly Challenge Month – Novemeber 1st

Dani asked me to write a scary story – something that could be told around a campfire.  Give it a read and then tell me how I did in the comments.


Shortly after college, when I was working and single and felt like I had the world at my feet, with money to spare and time to enjoy, I was the King of Halloween parties.  (How I later morphed into a lowly Jester is a different story altogether).  I planned out sets for when I stepped behind the decks to spin records for my guests.  There were themed drinks to accompany the decorations that adorned the inside and outside of the house.  I even had space set aside to get away from the music and commotion where party-goers could relax and read their preference of magic books or play with a Ouija Board or learn how to use a voodoo doll…

It was the third year of these epic parties where my world began to unravel.

An open door policy meant that strangers would often find their way into the festivities, along with irate neighbors from time to time as well, and I got used to looking up from the spinning records into a sea of faces I didn’t recognize.  So, it wasn’t alarming on that 3rd anniversary, with my pulse pounding in time to the blistering pace of the high energy music, to make eye contact with an unknown guest.  It was, in hindsight, odd for me to be so captivated for their green eyes that I nearly missed by drop point for the next track.

I shook my head to refocus my concentration and salvaged the transition, and then spent the rest of my set purposefully engrossed in the art of mixing so I would avoid making any other mistakes.  But, then, as I handed control of the music over to the next dj, and grabbed a much needed drink, I went in search of the guest with mesmerizing eyes.  Interestingly enough, however, I couldn’t remember anything about how they’d been dressed.  I could only remember the luminescent light green orbs.

From the kitchen and back across the living room turned dance floor, to the spillover family room where people mingled and away from the thumping beats, and then up the stairs to the lounge where guests were nervously and excitedly watching the Ouija Board answer whatever question they had asked of the spirits within.  I made my way through the entire house and did not find who I was looking for.  Disappointed, but not overly concerned, again because of the open door policy, I made my way downstairs across the dance floor again to step through the sliding glass door and soak in the chill of the night for a few minutes.

I was gazing at the stars when movement by the brick fence across the yard caught my attention.  I snapped my head down and my eyes were immediately caught in her gaze again.  Without a second thought, or perhaps even a first one, I stepped away from the door, the lights, and the music, and into the darkness to say hello.  “Are you enjoying the party,” I asked while I was still a few feet away.

The lack of immediate response didn’t faze me.  Why would it?  She didn’t know me and I didn’t know her.  She was at my party, sure, but she’d left it, just as I had to find some solace or comfort, perhaps, in the quiet and dark backyard.  If I’d been her I likely wouldn’t have answered quickly either, as I assessed whether the person approaching me was drunk, or an idiot, or a threat.  So, I stopped before getting in what I would have considered her personal space.

“What’s your name?”

Her voice purred, low, sultry and every bit as captivating as her eyes, which I still hadn’t looked away from.  Not wanting her to think I was staring at her, I tried to break away and look at the stars again, but found that I was unable to.  A slight bit of panic settled in then, but the liquid from the nearly empty cup in my hand had slowed things down for me and I didn’t realize how much trouble I was in.

“Matticus.  Or DJ Matticus.  Or Matt.  Or George, even.  I’ll answer to a lot of different names.  What’s yours?”

Her eyes narrowed from the large pools of green reflecting the moon to greedy slits about to devour my soul.  I tried to retreat, back to the light and music and the party where I would find safety in numbers, but my feet wouldn’t respond to my urgent commands.  She slunk away from the shadow she’d been hiding in and I caught a glimpse of a cat costume and a sudden fire burning behind her eyes before she was on me.  Without actually touching me, she wrapped her arms around my neck and leaned in close to my left ear.

Her purring voice whispered dark secrets.  After the first one I dropped my drink cup.  After the second, I fell to my knees.  After the third, my hands joined my knees in the dirt.  Somehow she moved each time I did without losing her own balance and without ever contacting me.  The fourth secret sent me twisting onto my back, prone on the hard-packed ground next to the fence, the whole expansive of sky played out in front of me.  But, the stars and the moon swirled together in a whirlpool of light that seemed to suck me skyward.  Until, with the fifth secret, my eyes closed in blessed unconsciousness.

I woke in a hospital, with handcuffs keeping me chained to the bed, and no memory of what had happened, of what I had done.  The secrets, however, I remembered then and still do all these years later.  I used one of them to get myself out of trouble with the law.  I used therapy to try and ease myself back into society.  I used hair dye to change my color back to what it should have been because I was too young for it to be all white.

I stopped throwing Halloween parties.  I no longer have an open door policy.

And, for the most part, I lead a perfectly normal life.

But, if you ever seen me whispering to myself, with a far-off look and my head tilted towards the sky, I would advise you to stay away from me.  I would advise you not to make eye contact. I would advise you to not lean in closer to try and hear what I’m saying.

*whisper whisper whisper*