Wednesday, November 22, 2017

How doth the city sit solitary…

…that was once full of people.

I remember many occasions sitting in my Streetsville apartment looking out the big window, contemplating at great length and seeing all these structures and machinations of society: I had never felt so alone; so utterly alien. At the time I regarded this with some degree of emotional peril; not as much as you’d expect, but more than I later would. My yawning separateness was to some degree just another observation; another new important revelation in a long roster of them. It was then that I found some comfort in that opening line from the book of Leviticus and then that I began reading the Christian bible for the first time since grade school, and then that I began finding wisdom instead of nonsense; wisdom which few priests would, so far as I imagined, ever interpret much the same way I was. It was then that I began to sense that much of this “religious” material must have been borrowed from other sources and that much of it was not intended at its roots to be a tool of Christian doctrine at all.

That alien feeling persisted for a long time, varying in intensity.

I remember a long night wide awake in my attic eyrie which I rented from Long Time Companion; the friend formerly known in blog space as Peter Pan. I’m pleased to say that he has come a long way, finding some peace, and considering that when we were breaking up years prior to this rental arrangement and I’d threatened to murder him (and possibly meant it) in a fit of outrageous jealousy - I guess I’ve come a long way too.

That night I’d felt the weight of this threshold; this decision; this gateway to… what? Enlightenment? This reckoning that I’d found no one yet who was willing to take my hand and proceed with me.

It was that night when I strummed the guitar and the song The Line came out: a simple three-chord ditty in which I tried to voice this conundrum; this great step in evolution (or so it seemed to me then) and my concern that I was becoming too alien from everyone around me and that I was losing the capacity to relate and thus to communicate and thus the potential to teach or to guide.

I did not want my learning; these immensely powerful and useful understandings to benefit me alone!

What I don’t remember is any conscious decision; any intention to back away from that threshold, but indeed that is what I did; not ready to give up on others; and not feeling any confidence that I’d ever be able to reach anyone again if I took this step and launched too far into another realm.

I remember being surprised to so easily embrace a reverse-pretentiousness, how easy it was for me to “play dumb” in a way, to reveal no insights in day to day circumstances where I was wise in relevant terms but wise enough, also, to know that what I had to say would not be understood or not be embraced and so I remained quiet and nodded like some very simple man. I was surprised how easily I could keep my ego in check.

I remember feeling lonely at times because I had no one I could be completely myself with. I literally had no secrets. This is a huge statement to make. I doubt it can rarely ever be honestly said. I had no secrets but yet I had to keep quiet about some things, not for shame (I could admit any flaw or fault I was aware of) but for other people’s comfort. I had no energy or any mandate to challenge everyone’s illusions all day every day.

When I met Neo and observed what astounding mental freedoms he possessed, I knew he was very special and that I had to make myself available to him. And with the brainstorming of excellent associate JazzLion, I began writing a novel in which I tried to plant all my most important and relevant understandings, with the thought that if he read it (along with others if it got published) and was of the kind of mind I had been crediting him with, then as an adult he might unearth that book and look me up. I did not indulge in any romantic notions about such an encounter but in essence I could imagine him saying, “Dude! Remember me? I understand what you’re saying here! And I thought we should talk I don’t imagine you’ve been expecting many people to get it…”

Instead Neo took such an immediate interest in me that we became associates when grade school graduation should have otherwise separated us.

In hindsight, maybe that was all for the worse. Another regret? Should I have finished the damn book instead, and put it in his hands and said goodbye?

One of the joys in our association; call it friendship; call it mentorship, whatever, was that I had someone I could be one hundred per cent myself with. I regarded him as completely trustworthy. Not trustworthy in that I could trust him with my secrets (because I felt I had none) but trustworthy in that I trusted him to be able to handle the truth; to be able to handle the things I had to say.

For the first time in quite a while I had someone I did not feel alien with.

This is the crux of my broken-heartedness.

Imagine being a human but growing up on some far away planet where everyone is wildly different than you and finally you meet another human; the only other human on the planet, and you just feel so at home finally, and your friendship blossoms and then after eight years he just says, yeah I can’t do this anymore bye. 

Sometimes these days I think surely we’ll get back together again. Surely he’ll come to his senses.

But sitting here, trying to be a little present; a little wakeful, I think: How carefully have I monitored this alien issue over the last eight years?

Am I sure that no one else is capable of letting me be me, without me having to be concerned about scaring them off?

I know that the Ponderer and Skeeter Willis are frequent readers of this blog (god knows why; it is so scattered and indulgent) and I must ask with honesty; not to flatter, are they not willing and capable?

I wonder too, about Dog Whisperer and Earth Writer and Aqua Lad. I barely knew them eight years ago. Have we not developed an almost familial bond?

On that note what about my mother and my brother?

Surely JazzLion and Renaissance Kid and Global Citizen; though they live rather out of the way to varying degrees, so to rely on them regularly would be difficult.

And the Earnest Chef too. And The Healer. Thinking about them now, are they not slam dunks? Have I not already felt free with them and just not done the accounting?

Perhaps even the Thoughtful Educator. Haven’t all these relationships broadened and solidified over these years? Have I failed to give some special people fair credit?

And then there’s Dr. Lock of course. I’m surprised as I think about this now - how many friends I am able to consider in this regard

Perhaps I need to sample the waters; open up to more people the same way I did to Neo and see how it goes; if they are comfortable or not.

It would help, I’m sure, if I could be my gentler self with them. Which would happen naturally I’m sure if I could bring myself to be more present; more mindful. I might not be ready though. Let me cradle myself in the writing for now.

With regards to that evolution, I suppose this is another regret: When Neo asked, But why wouldn’t you want to embrace enlightenment if you could? Why ever choose otherwise? For some reason I gave him a cryptic answer that was more about my remaining addictions; my susceptibility to identity, instead of a straight answer. God knows why. It just happened.

I should have told Neo the more simple and sincere perspective: that I was waiting until he was ready to go there with me.

1 comment:

Troy Gillespie said...

Yes...and I hope so.