I’m Not Immune to the Savage

Image

I do recall

Those savage ways of the drunk

A clueless chap

Without regard to one thing or another

Except the next drink

Each moment to him

Was fleeting and shameless

So he got away with things

Without a conscience

Only concerned about the next drink

And when the drunk lost his way

He decided to replace the drink

With serenity

Something sustainable

Without the effect of malice

And it’s been several years

Without a drink

But once in a while that awful drunk

Of a person

Comes out to wreak a little havoc

In the midst of serenity

And serenity sees him clearly

Ashamed of this un-departed drifter

A jackal, a fool, a scarcity of a soul

Still a savage

Only without a drink

But there is a way to beat him

At his own awful game

Her name is humility

I embrace her this time

Rather than resist her

She is comforting

Although she comes across

As scolding

And I tuck her in my pocket

Declaring her as my hero

And the drunk as the villain

Reminding myself once again

That I’m not immune

I’m not immune

We move forward together

Humility and me

Facing the drunk

Then leaving him behind

Without a drink

Knowing that one day

We’ll unexpectedly meet again

Merely as a reminder

Of where I’ve been

To keep me grounded

In the moment

Rather than flailing through 

My life

Without  regard to my own precious

Vulnerability

 

 

 

 

And When the Winds Bellow, Sometimes You Just Gotta Get Creative

Image

THE WIND IN COSTUME by J.L. Forbes

 

What if the wind weren’t a phantom?

Befitting its gusts and breezes

Suiting up before its salutation

Greeting us gently in slight formation of butterfly wings

Or abruptly like batwing twitches

Twirling toward town as a ballerina dancer

A parting stage curtain preceding winter rain

Jellyfish skirts brushing the leaves of autumn tree branches

What a sight the breeze would be

If she were the feather of God’s pen

Brushing past the sky

In cosmic calligraphy

Dressing for each blustery occasion

In the garment of dragon scales

Or the shadowy cloak of a beastly tail

If each fabric of wind reflected its temperament

Which shifty seraph impregnates sails?

Who is the playful cherub carrying my kite?

Or the mistress behind a summer wind kiss?

Whose haphazard broom sweeps past this city early in spring?

This invisible passerby

The unclothed zephyr

Forceful, considerate, impulsive, tranquil

Carries me deep into imagination

Accepting the Yin and Yang of Ourselves and Channeling Emotion Through Art

Image

I’ve been watching the series ‘Dexter’ on Netflix.  Though the plot in this show demented, I’m a huge fan of the writing and the profound insight of the narration.  When I watch any sort of television, or sit through movies, I’m interested in the art of the writing, the talent of the actors and the message being relayed.  Rarely do I sit and watch TV for entertainment purposes only.  I’m drawn to dark expressions of art, including (but not limited to) sorcery, psychological thrillers and intelligently written horror (which is rare to find, I know).  If a well-written movie ends in a sinister manner, I want to stand up and clap at the end.  There is nothing like a sharp blow to the senses to get me feeling something intense from within.  I like it when something outside of myself creates a little friction inside of my own body.  It wakes up, gets me thinking and makes me feel alive.  There is no shame in this.  Those entertainers are merely funneling their anger into art.  If people don’t like it, they don’t have to watch, listen, or expose themselves to the artists fury.  There is no harm in the expression of anger when it is being channeled creatively.  We all have a dark side; just some of us are afraid to express it, while others express it destructively.  There is a happy-medium, and it’s called art.

For the longest time, I have been afraid to express my own anger, so it often comes out in a destructive manner.  In treatment, they taught us to sit with our rage, but all I could think about while I was sitting there, was running to a batting cage and slamming some balls across a field.  I also thought it would have been a good idea if they invested in some punching bags.  Anger is difficult for anyone to sit through.  When I am steaming with anger, sometimes I go on a long run to diffuse the energy, but this is not always possible depending on where I am when I’m fuming.  Finally, I’m accepting the fact that I’m often frustrated, annoyed and irritated.  Anger rears it’s ugly head through the likes of my sarcasm, and in random bursts of rage. It hasn’t done me any good to hide this fact about myself.  It comes out one way or another, and I go from being Zen, to being a complete asshole.  This is not cool at all, especially when others are on the receiving end.  I’m not bi-polar, I swear.  I simply haven’t learned how to express my anger in a constructive manner.  It isn’t proper to be angry, you see, so I’ve been conditioned to suppress these dark emotions. 

This is all about to change.

I’m in acceptance of my anger.  It’s fine.  I’m not judging it anymore.  It doesn’t matter where it derived from.  It could even be carried out from a previous lifetime for all I know.  The bottom line is that it’s a part of me that I’ve heedlessly rejected because of shame, but that shame no longer serves me, and the anger doesn’t disappear when I ignore it.  So what am I going to do about it?   I’m already doing it.  I’m writing a dark series of books.  They are twisted, demented, entertaining, extreme and shocking.  I don’t even feel like I’m writing them as they seep through my fingers onto my keyboard… and the release… it’s incredible! I am giving myself permission to explore this “dark passenger” of myself. I’m slowly releasing the rage before it evolves into destruction, like small trembles in the earth that release seismic pressure, which provide relief from a major earthquake.
We tend to judge people who have a dark expression, but the truth is, they are simply aware of their demons, and rather than rejecting them, or letting them get out of control, they have learned a constructive way to channel them. 

Art is the most sacred expression of emotion.  It’s the bridge between the soul and the human being.  The gift of being an artist, is being able to express my dark side without bringing any harm into the world.  And the amazing part about channeling my anger into a series of books… is that it’s fun! If people walk around believing that they are strictly filled with rainbows and unicorns, or that they don’t have a dark side (we are all made up of yin and yang, remember), then they are in denial of themselves.  Suppressed anger will come out eventually, whether behind closed doors or in the daylight for the world to see.  The sad part about the suppression, is that it usually causes harm to others.  I know this from experience.

The weekend is approaching, and I will be busy doing other things besides blogging, so although this isn’t my usual positive message for the day, I hope my readers take the morsel of truth they find here and savor it.  To lighten the mood, here is a little poem I wrote regarding this topic:

THE ARTIST’S WAY

In the hollows of emotion

Lies a significant mountain

Where an Artist must endure

The Dancer discovers her balance

And a Philosopher realizes rest

Is allied with Wisdom

A Dreamer will awaken

In the perils of fear

A Writer’s fervor ignites

As he allots revenge to nature

Painters muse in both love’s spell

And tragedy’s bluster

In regards to pain and bliss

There is no difference

In the Poet’s sentiment

Each carries marvel

Every emotional depth and pike

Embodies great insight

Revealing itself

Through brilliant Human artistry

 

 

 

 

I Bury the Bottle (Poem by J.L. Forbes)

imagesCAG2TIWO

I bury the bottle

Deep in the earth

Pour out this poison

Being high was not worth

Ignoring my essence

Drowning out pain

Hurting my loved ones

My life lived in vain

 

I bury this bottle

My life is now mine

No longer a stronghold

Time to refine

I walk away sober

Turn my back on this hell

To begin a real journey

To climb out of this shell

 

I bury this bottle

Today is the day

Not one drop of booze

To steal me away

Goodbye you ol’ havoc

A friend you were not

A liar, a cheat

From the very first shot

 

– April 21, 2011