There’s a lot of life carved into 60 seconds when you’re not sure you’ll be alive at the end of them.
Common wisdom suggests that those who optimistically embrace every second because life is beautiful and gorgeous and happy and joyful and cheerful are the ones who get the most out of life.
I suggest that those are the people who skim the surface of the universe without ever truly knowing its depth or circumference. I suggest that they are the people who think the goal of life is joy when the real goal of life is metamorphosis. I suggest that transformation is the ultimate directive of the universe. Observe it in liquid to gasses, in maggots to flies, in the acrid sting of fresh onions to a sticky sweet fond on the bottom of the pan.
Most people see life as a beginning, a middle, and an end. And they hate the end, they resent it, they avoid it at all costs, they see it as the natural enemy.
People like me experience life as a constant end without end. The middle is a mythical space where others unfold quietly and dumbly, unaware of the sharp steep chalk edge inches away from their hapless feet. Unaware of the constant dredging and sluicing of fortunes, tossing choice in favor of chance without conscious consent.
People like me don’t need to consent. We are the conscious unconscious. We don’t get to consent or dissent. We ARE. We are born BEING. Raw, charged, and full-spectrum humans from the moment we hit existence skidding our tires against a static roadway.
We appear broken, blasted, wasted, and wan. That’s just because we operate on a different frequency than most humans. We haven’t got your filters for noise, for violence, for chaos, for sorrow, for anything at all. Everything hits our exposed nerves like lightning shock. It burns us hollow.
The joy for us is in the macro experience. Looking at the unfettered layers of landscape as separate sentient beings, seeing the glory in the dust mote, the streak of light, the accidental paint dripping. The joy for us isn’t in living another day for the sake of living, which is meaningless in itself, but to watch the golden hour cross the world one more time illuminating the hungry human eye, swathing a grassy hillside in a soft dust of light. This is worth living another day for. It doesn’t need words, unless we want to share it outside ourselves, then it requires more words than there are in our lexicon.
Give up your stiff rules of thought, of belief, of starchy dogma. Release yourself into the wild. Let your thoughts get thick with shade and leaves. God might be in the details, might not be too. Don’t know what God does or doesn’t do, but I know that the divine in humans is never as far from the surface as their actions suggest. That’s the closest to blind faith I get.
Deliver your bloody beating heart into my trembling hands and I will bury it up on the pinnacle of your crumbled hope, your grave of dreams.
I once picked up an accordion every afternoon and played Amazing Grace on it like it was the sword that defeats death.* It wasn’t, but the bees heard me, the lilacs listened, the ivy slowed down and heard the call of honey.
*True fact. I still have my accordion but I’m terrified to try and play it after years of neglect.