Tag Archives: conversation

The Shadow

You walk alongside me day in and day out

Stout and tall like I am

Both knowing and being the darkest part of me

What would you say to me?

Would you judge me for my every action?

Tell me things I am afraid to speak of?

You would be the median to my arrogance or cowardliness at the time

The Yang to my Yin

If only you were able to speak…

The knowledge you probably possess is profound

You have great abilities, such as projecting yourself in more than one direction

Being able to stretch varying distances

Yet you only exist if I do, so I feel like a hindrance

We share the same life but you are the better half in my opinion

Maybe I envy your peaceful existence, and you deserve mine so you can live out life

At times I feel like the shadow of myself, while you were meant to be…the part of me which strong and true.

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“That’s Not Who I Am.” (8-11 stanzas)

“I get it!”

He yelled from inside the car.

“Sometimes it is hard to take the leap.”

As if through the dreary haze of a dream, I remember something

in fragments

The desert and the canyon.

The hopelessness and the feelings of being lost.

The bitter taste…

“You just gotta let go!”

He flicked his cigarette at me.

“Who are you?” I yell back, my head pounding.

“I am a nobody.

A no one.

Someone undefined as of yet.

The beginning of something new

and that endless possibility of what is to come!”

I shook my head violently.

The signs and the anger drumming in my head were overwhelming.

It all needed to end.

Those horrible images of a pointless life

attached

to

a

name

“That’s who I am.”

                                                                        I

didn’t

even

like

“Who are you?”

My eyes widened, flitting from the dark ledge of the unknown

back to the shadowy silhouette of the man with no name.

Sweet existential understanding broke through the clutter of past things.

That’s not who I was anymore.

“I am you.”

_

_

I stumbled forward

learning to walk again, gesturing for him to move to the passenger side.

Now was my turn to drive.

He smiled that scary smile.

Scary with all the things that now could be.

I closed the door and he shut his

as he talked of how the possibilities were endless now

life was for me to bend again

through the insight I have gained

in enlightenment.

The past was merely a springboard

from which to launch

with lessons learned

and tales to tell.

Nothing to define the man to come.

That’s not who I am any longer.

I punched the accelerator.

The piece of shit lurched forward into the darkness.

For a moment we flew

Until we

began

to fall.

Toward a bright

white

Light

we

fell.

I close my eyes.

Thinking of the metaphor of the ledge.

“That’s not who I am…

…any longer…”

_

_

The sun was just breaking when I waked.

Gasping for breath, sitting straight in the uncomfortable car seat.

The little light just beginning was orange, purple and blood red.

It was enough to show me the wide expanse of desert

bathing in the blooming colors, soaking up the first bit of understanding.

I leaned back in the seat letting the heat warm my cold body

resurrecting in a way, allowing me to feel new.

Blinking I reached for my cigarettes,

craving the menthol flavor

to mask the bitter metallic flavor left in my mouth.

After a few drags

I twisted it into the wood paneling

chucked the rest

allowed a deep breath

and a grateful smile

started up the car

and began to drive.

I had many miles to go.

The adventure had just begun anew.

_

_

There once was a man, who hated his name,

the history and the definition that came with it.

But that man died-

-disappeared.

Leaving behind only a license and a social security number to show he was there.

With those was a note,

written in hastily excited letters:

“That’s not who I am.”

FIN.

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“That’s Not Who I Am.” (5-7 stanzas)

And so we went

with nary a word into the dark night.

The headlights illuminated little around us

leaving us with a dim understanding of where we were going.

That was for the best,

I tried to convince myself.

That was all apart of this letting go theme.

But was this who I am?

My eyelids were starting to fall.

I looked over at the man with no name.

Saw his silhouette waving in and out of focus,

looking ghostly.

He’d moved onto smoking a joint

and singing under his breathe with the Goldberg Sisters.

I saw shinning tears running down his cheeks.

I wipe away the salty wet from my cheeks

and just as I fall asleep he punched the radio off,

angrily,

muttering,

“That’s not who I am.”

_

_

I woke up when we came to a screeching halt.

My head flung forward and then snapped back.

“MOTHERFUCKER!”

screamed the man with no name.

My foggy eyes cleared quickly, panicking about what could have happened.

I jumped out of the car.

He was just standing at the edge off to the edge of the headlights.

Feet planted.

Arms crossed.

Back to me.

Cautiously I joined peering into the murky darkness the lights tried to pierce.

My eyes widened.

We stood on a precipice of a gorge.

He laughed,

“Marla was right!

You might die at any moment.

The fucking tragedy?

You don’t!”

“Would have killed us?” I yelled, in fright,

in anger,

in excitement.

He winked at me,

“Maybe.”

“That would have made you a murderer!”

He winked at me again with a scary smile,

“That’s not who I am.

Who are you?”

_

_

Walking toward the car, he let out a barking laugh.

My vision went funny and my body began to ache.

Then they came in big billboards

that passed me on this stagnant road right by the ledge.

I saw Lowell being built in the Industrial Revolution.

Flashing before me I witnessed Kerouac sitting at his typewriter,

my parent’s pointless mundane lives,

the banking job I had,

the kids poking fun

(that pain still burning).

Showing me fully connected to the social media of the day-

Showing me a slave to the entirety.

I felt sick as I fell to my knees covering my eyes.

“Why is this happening?”

“Showing you a Jack’s wasted life.

“But

“That’s not who I am.”

He winked again with that scary smile.

Walking toward the car, he let out a barking laugh,

“That’s not who I am!”

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“That’s Not Who I Am.” (1-4 stanzas)

There once was a man who hated his name.

Reminded him of his folks back home

in Lowell, Massachusetts.

He told me this that night.

“That’s not who I am.”

Then he lit up his cigarette

took a few drags

but before he could be asked to put it out

he angrily twisted it into the wood

threw down his money

(but no tip)

muttering,

“That’s not who I am.”

 _

_

This intrigued me so I followed him out.

I knew he would have an interesting point of view.

He didn’t seem to mind

though he didn’t seem to care, either

and continued to talk as if no one was there.

“I’m not a factory worker.

I’m not the Kerouac.

And I’m not a Southeast Asian.

So I hit the road, in search of a better name

or a meaning for my name. “

 “So you are a traveler?”

He stopped but didn’t turn around.

“That’s what I do.

That’s not who I am.”

 _

_

The repressed anger in his voice crackled

and I would never assume what he was a again.

He said names are just tags,

tagging you to long dead pasts.

Jobs are moneymaking limitations,

limiting you to a mediocre level.

Race is an automatic stereotype,

Stereotyping you into some sort of demeaning joke.

He could go on but he would always stop,

stop before his words became to convoluted and say,

“Unless you like being defined by those sorts of things

but I don’t drink that Kool-Aid

because

that’s not who I am.”

_

_

He left the passenger door open to his piece of shit car

and I climbed in hesitantly.

This was a man that I really knew nothing about

except for the small fact that he was from Lowell, Mass.

But there was this real adventure he promised

by way of casting away everything you had

searching for who you really are.

“You can take the fast lane to death,” he said turning onto the high way

handing me a razor and some powder.

“Or you can take the slow road.”

He paused to watch me fumble with cutting.

“But

that’s not who I am.”

His foot slammed down upon the accelerator

throwing me back

and the coke twisting and spiraling out the windows into the jet black night.

I coughed.

He laughed,

“That’s not who I am.”

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Leave Me Here

I left the lights on

 made promises on the wind;

Unknown to us both, this simple dark con

Plaguing us of what we couldn’t find;

The promises I broke apart.

“Without purpose?” you say through tears.

I can’t tell sweetheart,

 so get out of these affairs.

I can’t stand seeing the pain I’ve inflicted.

Leave me here to be alone-

Leave me here evicted!

I’ll sit here in the unknown

 not deserving of a second chance.

I beg of you not to think of me.

Just wave goodbye leaving your broken stance.

This lesson you’ve been given is a guarantee,

for you to move forward into a better romance.

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This is She

Freedom tastes like cigarette smoke and reeks of booze.

Freedom is a fine woman who has fallen prey to society’s constant change.

Freedom is not the same as how it use to be.

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Tanka: 19: Sparrow: 5

and then the Hawk said,

“I can’t remember a time,

that I felt like this.”

and so, then said the sparrow,

“This will come many more times.”

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