Everything freaks me out.

I’m wandering around my grandparents’ house. It’s nearly 4 o’clock in the morning and yet, with as late an hour as it is, and with as early as I ought to be up in the morning, something overcomes me-

I can’t quite place it.

It’s not nostalgia, not quite. It’s not sadness, for as bare as some of these walls have become, they’re bare with purpose grander than that of the need to keep up appearances or the desperate desire to be set in old ways.

It’s just.. Strange.

It’s always strange.

I’m wandering these old rooms- rooms I played in as a child, rooms we celebrated Christmases and held family reunions in over summers long since past.

Mom hands me an earring. We study it for a moment, together, before placing it back on the little piano that still stands in the living room.

"Makes me sad," she says, thinly, as I examine the olive drab carpet in hopes of finding its mate. It doesn’t seem altogether odd that anyone would have misplaced such a thing, especially in the commotion and to-do of the past couple days and yet, somehow, I understand what she means when she says it’s eerie.

It’s not quite the word I’m looking for, but it does capture a certain essential quality of whatever it is I’m feeling at the moment.

She heads upstairs to try and cycle down enough to glean a little sleep from the few hours left in the night as I drift downstairs into the basement. This room is largely unchanged now, though when we got here, however many weeks ago, it was the only one that seemed to feel different. This used to be something of an activity room, or a “rumpus room,” as they’d say in the old days, but minor physical alterations aside, the biggest difference seemed (to me, at least) to be the lingering impression that no one had really been down here in quite some time, save for the occasional trip to the freezer to grab a tv dinner or to put another load in the tumble dryer.

I’ve spent many nights down here over the course of this trip, writing papers and playing pool against myself, poring over my guitar and trying to come up with anything that resembles an actual song. The old sign my mom made for my sister and I to commemorate the “D & J Pool Hall” is still down here, perched atop an old, wicker chair and I’ve done my best not to dislodge it from behind the orange cushion.

There are various old trinkets down here- memories of days gone by, of holidays and trips around the world, various bottles of fine, aged spirits and unopened packages of Kool Milds, trophies, trinkets, old plush toys, VHS tapes, and photographs collecting dust.. I lean in close to read the signature on an old, cartoon rendition of my grandfather in his workshop - it’s dated the year I was born.

It’s odd wandering around these rooms now that so many of them are so bare- not empty, but certainly moreso than they were only a few days prior. The old, wood paneling.. The vacant hooks along the walls..

I’m all of a sudden reminded of the earring and it strikes me that perhaps that’s what I find so jarring - the little signs of life that linger in the breath between the walls of rooms relieved of their furnishings. The silence of an empty house is different than the silence of a house with people living in it. Add to that the heavy burden of reason- not the fact that the earring was lost, but why it was lost, why so many of the furniture pieces have moved, why the beds are empty, and despite any of the hard-won and ardent victories, I’m left with this:

I hate to see the cracks in people. Family, friends, loved ones.. The little glimpses you gain into the struggle of others. You do what you can to help, but lately I’m left with a lot of this feeling - wandering around a half-empty house, listening to the walls and wondering how it came to this.

It probably sounds more dramatic than it is, but here, in this moment, that’s been my summer- seeing people’s cracks and trying as best I can to help them patch ‘em up.

Sad in some ways, eerie in others, with moments of joy mixed in, and a heavy dose of nostalgia, but ultimately, at the end of it all… Just strange.

Or at least until I find a better word..

They’re never quite there when I need ‘em…

Just strange.

More silly shit..

More silly shit..

Some weird little thing I wrote the other day..  Enjoy?  I guess?

____________

Modern society

sort of amounts

to a very loud

and noisy scribble..

-

A caricature

of a bright

and writhing monstrosity

embroidered on the curtain

between a neon-lit dining room

and the dingy kitchen

at the back of a Chinese restaurant,

behind which

The Wizard burns his hand

trying to shoo a cockroach

away from the stove..

Egyptian Cotton

Wrap my body up
In gauze.
Take my weary frame
And soak it in morphine and French perfume.
Pour me shots of chloroform
And feed me through a tube
Until my tired arms give up the fight and embrace oblivion.

I’m all but gone-
Another shape in a doorway
At the back of a crowded bar,
Disappearing in the motion blurred sickness
of all the people drinking to forget a week’s worth of headaches and problems that don’t really matter anyway
And will probably just reset come Monday afternoon..

Everybody’s got advice for a dime.
Two cents and five times over
And I’m pulling reassurance out of the gaps between my fingers,
Dying to fill that space with porcelain and little wires.

Disingenuous platitudes flow like cheap wine through tired eyes and a wild imagination,
Tenfold for a penny’s worth of snake oil and Tony Robbins bullshit.
Drunk off wistful shadows and the hollow, breathy ring of silence.
Choking,
Intoxicated,
Scratching at the frame,
Trying to see the photographs.

How sweetly it dissolves me now.
How neat and oh, how prim.
Jaw goes slack..
Eyelids dim..

A ghost that longs for desperate peace,
To let go the controls and wreck its machine,
To slip out through the cracks with the last of the platelets and carbon dioxide-
An empty shell..
a placeholder..
An imperfect mechanism on the faulty framework of irrational design.

The engine rolls over.
The numbers tick by.
Wrung out..
Running on fumes…

I wasn’t strong enough.

I tried,
I tried,
I failed.

But I’m happy I got this far.

And tonight I’m coming home.

Skinlamp

everythingfreaksmeout:

Mistakes I made a year’s worth of months ago stick to my feet..
Every now and again, I find them
Tucked away under stacks of old newspaper
And hiding like spiders in the dark space between my bed and the wall..
The same, curled pages that pile high up in my mind
And the same spiders that…

I wish that I could be
In the cellars of the sea
And disappear in them
Never to be seen again

Leave this life
It’s unrelenting appetite
For feeding off the weak
Who never had their turn to speak

The sky will be my shroud
A cenotaph of cloud

Every day a false start

(Source: Spotify)

If I only could
Make a deal with god
And get him to swap our places

Sick to my stomach