"Welcome"

First of all,
the English language has its limitations

and so do I

Second,
This is not Love,
this is a poem about Love
specifically, what it means to be young and in Love

This means,
among other things,
that the enigma, the occurrence, the happening, the feeling
it is muffled
by the transition of all humanity into the funnel of words, the funnel of perception, and
then it is smothered by every weakness I have as an individual

That is to say,
Love will never be a poem

Love can never be a poem

Love poems, however transcendent,
can only aspire to be an aftershock,
an echo
of the initial reality

Accepting this,
not as a limitation but as a testament to the indescribable power of consciousness
could be seen as a first step

Next,
I am not the first person to write down my feelings, nor will I be the last
I can only speculate as to the reason we create art
Art can “move” us
Which means, it can affect us in ways for which we have no translation
This is where our inefficiencies are put under the microscope
It seems, under this microscope,
that one cannot write about Love
without using words that were rendered cliché long ago
words that no longer retain the power that once gave them value

One can find all sorts of ways around it:
Metaphor, Simile, Personification,
allegory, rhyme, musicality,
ethics, rationale, causality,
wordplay

But ultimately Love cannot be described unless the listener is willing to put the time and effort into remembering the meanings of words,
as they stood, before our first futile grasps at the manipulation of English
as a vehicle for what cannot by nature be moved;
words like soul, or Love
try hard enough,
and you should come to the conclusion that these are shorthands
symbols,
for things we can be reasonably sure
exist
not only in the hypothetical reality of our minds,
but in the minds of those around us
sensations we all seem to have in common, more or less

Now, where was I…
Ah, yes –
Once again,
I am a writer, a poet, and a human being,
and as such,
the moment I put these words in a position where they can be read,
they lose an awful lot
they lose whatever meaning or intention I can be said to give them
– consciously or subconsciously –
they lose their objectivity
In the sense that death is transitory,
they die

Got that?

It’s flawed.
The writer is flawed, the system is flawed, the art is flawed.

Purposefully, necessarily, fundamentally…flawed

Let’s accept that and move on, undeterred
Let’s take it as a hint
that Love could never be contained by art

If Heaven exists,
there might also exist a sign at the entrance.
It might read, “Welcome To Heaven!”
Or something to that effect
That sign – is not Heaven.

It might use the word “Heaven,”
It might be located near Heaven,
It might be understood, comprehended
It might be helpful, in directing one to Heaven

But it’s not Heaven.

Love can never be a poem.

This is shorthand, this is symbolism, this is a sign at the gates of Heaven.

“Welcome.”

Life can be said to exist on a scale.
Some of us are more awake than others
Some of us are “living”
through impulse, instinct, intuition, and most of all: reflex
One might do all these things, and thusly be known as “alive”
All without experiencing very much at all.
Think about the collaboration of the mind with the things around it:
Think about the difference between watching television and reading a book
Think about the difference between reading about a kiss, and a kiss
Think about the difference between a kiss, and a kiss with someone who matters to you
Once again, we see the varying degrees of “life”
If we don’t, we aren’t ready to be young and in Love
In fact, we aren’t even ready to read a poem about being young and in Love
Not only are we not ready for Heaven,
we are not ready to read the sign
We may feel very strongly to the contrary
We may even get angry that our capabilities would come under fire
We may feel the malaise of having been doubted
But that doesn’t change the fact that we are not ready
Not ready for Love
We may be ready to feel attachment, infatuation, sympathy, empathy, fleeting moments of understanding
We may be ready to feel a relentless urge to fuck
Not just something or someone, for the sake of reproduction
but someone we think of as special
Someone we convince ourselves as carrying meaning
beyond others who have the same reproductive capabilities
We may say to ourselves, “I want her,” or “I want him.”
We may even say to ourselves, “Nobody else matters. I don’t want anybody else.”
But
This is not Love.

This is drive, this is focus
these are the birth pangs of determination
and that is integral in understanding our self-perception

We are just ourselves.
We are linked, somehow, to everyone else,
but we are, at most,
one person at a time
and when we die, we will enter death
unaccompanied

It might take death to understand what it means to be ourselves, and no one else
what it means to be unaccompanied
It might take near-death
It might take religion, or illness, or drugs
But once we realize it,
we see our lovers as venues
keys to doors that exist, like everything else in our universes,
for us
a squire to synchronicity

Then the feeling of being ourselves, and no one else
has less to do with alienation
and more to do with integration, harmony

We’re alive now, we’ll be dead soon,
and in that respect,
we’re like everyone else that can be said to exist, if only in our minds

So,

to be young and in love
means understanding that we experience the same energy, the same feelings
as everyone else who has ever been in love
and, simultaneously,
uniquity

(My drive is to be an individual, like you.
My drive is to be an individual like you.)

Wow.

No one can ever love you the way I love you here
the way I love you now
the way I love you always

So I am young and in Love
and that means not only that I am experiencing the apex of my life
It means, also,
that I am experiencing the apex of all life
In such a way that we can be said to share something
There was a man, lived long ago, who fell in love
he may have been more or less in love than me
but I will never be him
I can only love the way I do now, the way I know how
and thusly,
this Love is the greatest Love, the only Love, the farthest reaching point in this room that can be said to have walls

Think about forever
think about eternity
think about your life in terms of something that can and will end
if you’re doing it right, this should shake you
but as a reward
you will see life as having walls, and you will be able to push them back
expanding our existence
Did you feel that?
That was fear
fear is a tool for self-preservation
you may fear heights
A fall from great heights may end your life. It may kill you.
The fear keeps you away from great heights. The fear keeps you alive.
In the process, it may keep you from exhilaration, from experience, from excitement
but at the very least, it keeps you alive
Alive for another second
Now, the fear you just felt was not for self-preservation
and thusly could not even be known as “fear,” per se
But we will call it fear
as a shorthand

“Welcome”

This fear is from the knowledge of our own mortality
our limitations
we don’t like to be reminded of our own temporality
this fear stems from something we cannot save ourselves from,
even with the sacrifice of endless amounts of exhilaration, experience, or excitement
This fear is the sensation of our soul chasing its tail
This fear may be endlessly frustrating
This fear may seem completely undesirable

But let’s talk about attention –
Attention can be thought of as a quantity of marbles
We take these marbles and we delegate them to things we perceive
in a scenario, I may be in my parents’ living room
I delegate 10 marbles to the television, which is playing a commercial
20 to my father, who is telling me about his day
3 to the smell of dinner, being cooked in the adjacent kitchen
16 to stress, that my day’s work is far from over
8 to a cut on my finger, which gives me pain
12 to hope, that I will see my best friend later in the evening
thoughts and sensations I am having, all at once
To understand Love, you will need to take all your marbles and put them in the exact same place, all at once – if only for an instant
if you can do this, you will be immersed in the present moment
you will be unable to lend a single synapse, a single marble,
to worries or anticipations regarding the past or future
Fear & Desire will become irrelevant and you will find yourself
completely and utterly content to be alive

Life is full of moments in which our marbles are scattered
we have spread our experience of the given moment thin
we have spread our lives thin

…most of us

but not me

I am young & in Love
and I am Here & Now always
always for her
always living, never really sleeping
always for her

“Welcome”

2 comments:

Theodore said...

There was a time
Before we were born

Theodore said...

You know, you recommended I not read Whitman to anyone...but there are moments here where you get pretty Whitman.