Tag: aging

Keep Your Mind Flexible and Fertile


Calcification is what happens when people get to a point in their lives when they stop learning, stop growing, and become suspended in the amber of the brightest moment from their youth and all the sweet ephemera that will haunt them and dog them until the day they die.

I refuse to become calcified in spirit even if my hip pain plasters me to the sidewalk in abject pain.

I spent an inordinate amount of time and gasoline looking for a very precise mini-muffin tin. A venture that was doomed from the start as are most super specific quests. It turns out I just need to remove the rust from the perfect muffin tin I already own and was trying to replace.

There are tiny paws grabbing at my toes while I write this. The paws of a brand new being. Nothing brings out my maternal instincts like a kitten. I’m fostering a feral kitten Max has named Sonar. He’s not more than 11 weeks on this planet and as untrusting as I have been my whole life. He came to me hissing and shrinking and slinking and now he’s dashing across my office like he owns it and battling my toes like a true son of the earth.

I saw my brother tonight. Beloved wild kid turned 43. I spoke to my sister several nights ago. My Stevie Nicks heart in Vermont. Fuck sibling day, every day is sibling day that you get to hug or talk to your siblings. And for some that means hugging your best friends. Sometimes that means remembering those who’ve gone already. I can’t even begin to know what it’s like to have to say goodbye to brothers and sisters.

More and more I’m convinced that if there’s no other evidence indicating how far humans have come, discontinuing troll dolls is IT.

It might be proof of my de-evolution that I’m listening to Journey right now.

I’ve come to a point in my life when acquiring beakers bisects that point between my professional aspirations and my deeply held personal belief that all things in life can be measured by volume.

When I look back on my youth I see a graph depicting how not to commit suicide by the skin of your teeth.

It boils down to a long collection of barely connected set of circumstances that support waking up in the morning against all odds.

It’s always a shock when I realize someone gets it all, gets all the invisible armor, gets all the invulnerability, the moat they cannot cross. Most people never try because I impressively discourage them from making useless attempts.

I used to think Roy Orbison was a creepy hack but I’ve changed my mind and think he had a brilliance worth notice. I’m the last to realize this, obviously.

My hip (the one I didn’t break) has been hurting now for a solid two weeks. I accept that this is part of getting older. I accept that some of this pain would diminish if I would only lose a ton of weight. I accept that my joints are going to complain at an increasingly irritating rate.

What I don’t accept is that things were at a peak of awesomeness when I was at my peak of youth. I don’t accept that the way we did things when I was young is the gold standard for how things should always be. I can tell you that if I’d had then what I have today I would have been a much better vessel for preserving what it IS to be seventeen and full of death.

I would have been a more effective documentarian.

If humans cease to evolve they cease to be worth even the salt that comprises their natural makeup.

I’ll know we’ve evolved enough when we no longer separate ourselves by skin color or nationality.

Listen to yourself. Do you hear yourself complaining about youth with their noses buried in their devices? Are you complaining about how no one knows how to talk face to face anymore? Are you lamenting those halcyon days when everyone answered their land lines and when they met for coffee without the encumbrance of connectedness to anything outside of coffee?

Have you closed your ears to new music? New ideas? New thoughts?

Hips hurting is nothing. Hips hurting is like continental breakfast: it’s painfully inadequate but it’s regular like pink sunrise with an Advil wash.

My hips might become as stiff as a mammoth’s grave site but my mind is constantly stretching itself beyond its limits. This is how we adapt, stay young, and not die.

Not die.

I’ve got the blueprint for happiness if you’re willing to wade through the border between beer and bitch.

I’m not gonna cry, but you should let it go like the river you’ve been holding behind the gates.

Don’t wait for me, I won’t be meeting the light in my pyjamas.

In the Middle of It All

third and D

There is power in reaching the middle of a thing.  Of a life.  Of a thought.  Of an experiment.  Of an epic project.  It signifies the moment you have finally gotten to the heart of it all.  To the core.  To the answers.  To the conclusions that will change the world.

Young adults think all the power is in their skin, their dewy fresh emergence from familial protection into the harder edges of independence.  Young adults think all the power is in starting out because that’s when everything seems possible.  That’s when you still believe that poetry can change people, that the sun will never burn out, that pot won’t degrade your memory or your ambitions.  Young adults, even the wonderfully self possessed, are still posturing, trying to discover their best side, their strongest punch.  I know well the feeling that there is nothing I can’t do, that the world is mine to climb and claim.  I remember believing that I was going to rule the world with design and would be so famous that it might actually become tiresome.  There was no shame in dreaming bigger than life.  It was our stake on the planet, these declarations of lofty intention.

Real power moves quietly through sleeping tigers.

Real power is when you have stripped yourself of infinite possibility and accepted plausible deniability and then, long after all your bones have betrayed you, you rise again and  build muscle you never had before.  It’s when you let go of ego that you come to the middle of everything.  Some people find a crisis in that letting go.  Others deliver their own bones to the devil and are freed from the tyranny of flesh.

I’m getting at the heart of it all now.

I wouldn’t turn back for anything.

This is what I’ve been waiting for my whole life.

This story unfolding today.  This hour.  Right now.

I might never sleep again because I don’t want to miss a thing.

The middle of everything is where it’s all happening.

The young are right – poetry CAN change people.