"The whole problem lies with the self, the ego, and its involvement with the world on the one hand and the Absolute on the other."
"Oh, is that so?"
"Yes. You see, we are hatched and we drift on the surface of events. Sometimes, we feel that we may influence things, and this gives rise to striving. This is a big mistake, because it creates desires and builds up a false ego when just being should be enough. That leads to more desires and more striving and there you are, trapped.”
"In the mud?"
"So to speak. One needs to fix one’s vision firmly on the Absolute and learn to ignore the mirages, the illusions, the fake sense of identity which sets one apart as a false island of consciousness."
"I had a fake identity once. It helped me a lot in becoming the absolute that I am now—me."
"No, that’s fake, too."
"Then the me that may exist tomorrow will thank me for it, as I do that other."
"You are missing the point. That you will be fake, too."
"Because it will still be full of those desires and strivings that set you apart from the Absolute."
"What is wrong with that?"
"You remain alone in a world of strangers, the world of phenomena."
"I like being alone. I am quite fond of myself. I like phenomena, too."
"Yet the Absolute will always be there, calling to you, causing unrest."
"Good, then there is no need to hurry."
—Roger Zelazny, “The Courts of Chaos”
A body in motion stays in motion, he thought. One of his closest friends had told him that, once, and it was foremost in his mind as his lungs gratefully accepted the great draughts of air, in through the nose and out through the mouth, in through the nose and out through the mouth. His feet barely seemed to touch the earth, though at the start it had been more like they were gracelessly pummeling the pavement. As in all things, we struggle until we accept and we accept until we rejoice, and all sense of division falls away.
At the end of the cul-de-sac, he slowed to a halt and settled down on the easement between the sidewalk and the street. Leaning backward into a supine position, each blade of grass caressed his arms, his neck, his ears like a lover welcoming him home. His breathing remained heavy, but without struggle and with no sense of desperation despite the urgency. His eyes closed against the light of the sun, all he saw was red.
& then he was on his feet once more, taking those first few steps to his point of origin. The world rose up around him like a dream, a most perfect dream—phenomena arose and fell away, and something ancient observed it all. This had happened from time to time, from his earliest memories of childhood. It was perfect, inexplicable peace, and he was grateful for it, and grateful, too, even for the experience of being ill at ease or occasionally distraught. It all seemed so clear in these moments where his finite self existed side by side with the infinite Self of all beings everywhere. The trees and the animals and the people came together as one, and they loved him as he loved them, dissolving perfectly into the essential unity at their core.
Her smile, mine; the pale glow of street lamps;
knit sweater pulled up around her ears,
the cool breeze present, but barely noticed.
What light in those eyes,
what bright, bright love.
My happiness withers at the memory,
to think I’d had it and now it’s gone.
If love is truly something one can ever have.
One wonders if we are all merely reflections
of some perfect pair of lovers in the heavens,
some God, some Goddess, loving perfectly,
while we are mere shadow-puppets on the wall,
doomed to futile attempts to shove ourselves
back together; a beautiful, noble try.
Face down, head canted to the side,
one eye open and the other buried in the pillow,
he watched the fingers of his left hand
drumming rhythmic, reflexive motions,
counting time or thoughts or both.
It was sleeplessness and memories
& sadness and desire that he could not deny.
He was so sick of his circuitous mind spinning its endless tales,
& even more disgusted that he could often be so proud of the same.
Courage or bravado and brilliance or hubris.
& maybe he ran in mental circles for a reason
(so he could arrive Here Now!)
but all he wanted to do was sleep and wake
to love and love and love.
I want to lie in a field with you, getting stoned, drinking wine, a blanket, books. I want to read to you, whisper in your ear, tell you beautiful things that make my heart hurt, so they’ll make your heart hurt, bittersweet nothings that I can share, because I know you’d want to hear the things that I feel … & you would tell me how it made you feel, and I would see it under a new light, and we would smile, laugh, happy to not be alone anymore, happy to have found someone who understands. I would lie next to you, smell your hair, kiss your neck, taste the salt of your skin, and when I kiss your lips, softly, it would taste like berries and alcohol, that deliciously intoxicating promise of withering inhibition.
We would fuck, and it would be glorious, triumphant, animal passion mingled with unearthly union, the sun behind us, over us, the world around us, like pagan gods in all our splendor, and I would devour you, consume you, make you mine, cradled together in that ultimate union of souls. We would swing on the spiral of our divinity, but somehow, beautifully, be wonderfully alive, wonderfully human.
Your cunt would grip my cock, your legs wrapped ‘round my body, and I would be consumed by everything beautiful and sacred and feminine, and overwhelmed, I would prostrate myself at the altar of woman and lose myself, utterly, in the warmth of your passion.
Afterward, your head on my chest, we would lie naked and stare at the sky, and gazing upward and out, into boundless Infinity, we would realize we were somehow everything and nothing, and that all that mattered was this moment, this moment here, the scent of sweat and sex and seed disappearing on the breeze.
How I loved that dark, dark night,
hearing the wind outside her window,
watching the clock blink right-angled digits,
tasting her goodnight kiss upon my lips.
Lying there, beautiful and serene,
there was no lover, only the love.
She was life and I was life,
& life was in awe of itself.
You could dance under the hot lights,
as if you’ll never stop burning so bright,
but you’ll eventually start to miss the beat,
when the body and the soul fail to meet.
Yet even when I love another more than you,
I’ll never love them more than I once loved you.
& ‘lo, the siren keeps on singing,
as long as I am breathing.
She’s calling me back home.
& all the songs still float
in all the space between,
with nothing left unseen.
we lied amidst the graves
of former lovers’ mistakes?
When we laughed about the fools,
all the liars and the fakes.
We were no different.
No better than the rest.
Just fucking dreaming,
at our very best.