Burn

Vivid and apparent

Fresh in unholy pain

Pressed into desperate pleasure

Speak your precision 

Proceed to fill volumes

Keep your tone far away
Distant in voice and

Intemperate words 

Wound between fixtures

Shining observations 

Ubiquitous in nature and yet

So closely kept to satire 

Leaving us you went

Year after year

To most lively effect 

But years have lost 

A little meaning now

Awkward in their manipulation

Senseless change came

Then went with the sound of

Your burning for life

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New Years Eve…Thus Far

“I’m just not feeling like going out tonight.” I replied after the offer to stay overnight was issued. It’s not that I want to be alone entirely on New Years Eve, but it’s just the idea of going to my parents house to party wasn’t exactly my idea of fun. Id rather be reading in the New Year or spending time marveling and reflecting on my life, then letting it fall away from me with the new day that happened to be the beginning of 2016. 

That evening a friend messaged me “Not to make you a plan B, but was wondering if you had and New Years Eve plans? Mine might fall through.” With my congested and coughing cat finally purring happily in my lap, I found it very hard to want to be anywhere else. I wasn’t convinced I needed to do anything for the New Year. What was the point? So 365 days had passed. I was tired just thinking about how much had happened in the last year, and I was ready to treat the next day like any other day, because it was after all. “Not at all offended to be a backup plan. I’ll be honest I need some alone time. I got people overload at Christmas and at work I just kinda wanna stay in and read.” 

My boyfriend messaged me a little while after that. Having only moved into his new house a few months prior he was mourning his loneliness. “None of my friends got back to me. This might be my very first new year alone at home.” He complained a little put out. I consoled him and told him if distance weren’t an issue aid be right there with him, which probably wasn’t much consolation at all. In fact, it probably made him feel worse so I amended my comment with another. “It’s no different than any other day anyway. Most people just use it as an excuse to just drink themselves to death. I’d rather sit in my apartment and read.” 

The celebration of the new year just doesn’t feel all that significant to me. Why celebrate the passing of a year when you can treat every day like a new beginning? If each day is filled with its own wonders and joys, how does a new year even become significant? You write a date different. So what? None of us have lived a new day, and we all already saw yesterday.We are all tired of yesterday. Glad to see it go. Why hold onto a whole year before letting it go? Why resolve each year when you can resolve each day? 

With me…

Him: You’re my destiny. 

Me: I doubt that much. I don’t think a person can be a purpose. But, you’re a part of the path to mine. You’re proof I’m heading in the right direction darling, and I’ll take you along with me if you’ll let me. 

Artists 

Why is it that when people decide they want to be artists, we choose to starve them? Why do we take advantage of their talent? Why do we laugh at them?

In life we demand beauty as an ideal. We want beautiful things. So why do we crush those who merely want to make beautiful things for us to enjoy? Who want to bring us happiness? 

I wish I could understand why people demand these things, but don’t wish to support those who offer it. 

The Right Thing 

“You did the right thing.” I told her as she wiped her tears away. I would have been crying too if a customer had tried pulling that same act on me. Screaming. Pounding the counter. Threats. Typical things that customers usually say when upset, only louder and more physically displayed emotions. Stressing out one of our newer Selling Supervisors to the point of breaking down. She was afraid. Who wouldn’t be? Everyone was uncomfortable. That behavior was unacceptable and violent. 

The customer had a discrepancy. Her payment toward her credit card debt had been charged twice. This happens from time to time. Pretty frequently actually. So when we called the credit card company, like any person with a credit card should know, they said she had to file a discrepancy with them and it would be taken care of. She wasn’t satisfied with that. Our store name was on the card so it had to be our fault. She didn’t even pay the bill at our store. She paid it by mail. No error was made in-store. No record of the double charge from us. 

Of course, this customer didn’t care. She wanted her money back right away. So while I was shuffling our sobbing selling supervisors away from the monstrosity of a customer, my store manager was risking her job by taking money out of the register drawer and handing it to the childish and sad excuse of a human being. One who used her emotions and fists like a gun to an associates head, or at least, that’s how I imagined it since that’s how we all seemed to be reacting. Customers and associates dead silent. Afraid to speak up. Afraid to even breath lest they become the object of her terror. 

Handing the customer money, my store manager tried to calm her and smooth things over. I felt a moment of panic as I unlocked the office and ushered our shaken selling supervisor into its safety. That transaction was risky for both of them, because without information as to where that money was headed in the register, and no record of the double charge to her card on our end, it could be seen as the customer stealing and my manager allowing it.

Basically a whole lot of illegal happening. 

Not that the customer cared. She got her way. She just learned that yelling and and pounding her fists would give her money from an institution which owes her nothing. People could get fired for catering to her unacceptable behavior, and she wouldn’t even bat an eye. She could have charges pressed against her if the company wanted. But who would care out of the millions that company made a day? What’s a little over a hundred in comparison to millions? Very small. 

I thought of a Needtobreathe lyric as I sat our SS down: 

“Beg the book to turn the page/ cuz I get stuck where the villains get away/ Somewhere in this wretched tale/ there must be a time where the victim gets his way/…just…one…time…”

No matter. I tried to comfort my crying comrade. “You tried to do the right thing.” 

She sobbed in response “What does it matter,doing the right thing when it’s followed by the wrong thing and recognized as commendable?” 

I merely looked at her with pain in my eyes. I knew that question well. It struck my heart and broke it. It’s such a deep part of human nature…at its core the question: Where is justice when corruption seems like justice? 

I didn’t have the answers. I’m not God. I don’t know reasons. It felt hopeless and nothing was fair. All I managed to say was “It doesn’t matter what anyone else did. You tried to do the right thing. Don’t ever stop. You did well.” 

Let them suffer their own foolishness. I whispered within myself, as the flames of justice smoldered to damp ash in my broken heart.

Impressions of Instagram

He once asked me what the appeal of Instagram was. “I don’t get it. Doesn’t Facebook offer the same things and more?” 
He isn’t wrong, but it’s the “and more” that people are trying to avoid. You declutter and take away the articles that Facebook throws at you. The advertisements are streamlined and more subtle on Instagram, almost to the point of being works of art and not at all tools promoting consumption. The captions beneath the images are minimized to the point that it doesn’t matter what the words beneath the image are. All you want and need is the images. 

Instagram appeals strictly to human vanity. To the visual. In the cases where it doesn’t, it allows us to live vicariously through others. To have the impression of human contact when one is not connected to others in their lives. It allows creeping without ever having to make contact or having to even know the person personally. It gives us access to millions of visually interesting images that we can quickly cast judgment on and choose to show our affirmation. It allows us to display our creativity and our authenticity, as well as our shallowness. It is a combination of everything wrong, everything right, everything beautiful, and everything ugly in life. 

There is something both interesting and terrifying about all that. 

Concepts of Beauty

“I’m thinking of going down to a pixy cut. Just because of how dry my hair is .”
“I kinda like your hair the way it is now baby.” He responded sounding somewhat disappointed. That struck me as a good way to open up a conversation we hadn’t had yet as a couple. So I posed the ever relevant question: 
“Do you think it’ll look bad? This isn’t a trick question, I really want to know. ” 
He was silent for a moment. Contemplative. His mother was a hairdresser. He has seen a lot of hair cuts happen at the salon. He knew stuff and had opinions. He had only ever seen me with my signature under cut. Perhaps he needed a moment to think about it. 
I’m not usually one who cares so much about what other people think, but when it comes to him, his opinion matters to me. I try to listen and consider it thoughtfully out of respect. Granted I may not always listen, but as a creative person coming from a graphic design background, I desire feedback. I want to know what others consider beautiful, because the variations of what is and isn’t considered beautiful is fascinating. Diverse. Complex. 

Perceptions of beauty are subjective. Formulated between cultural norms, worldviews, and preferences based on experience and more often than not, sex apeal. As a couple I wanted to understand where his perception of beauty came from. Was it mostly physical? Was it emotional? A combination? What was it that made him consider something beautiful? I wanted to understand what he considered beautiful, then I wanted to ask him why. Get him thinking about his reasons and then approach it from how that opinion of beauty was formulated. 
He finally broke his silence.
“Ignore me baby. You’re always beautiful. Everything you have ever tried you’ve made look amazing. This can’t be any different. I love you. Besides, it’s just hair, it doesn’t change who you are, and I happen to be very into you for being you. I say go for it if you want it.”

It was a good response. 

Missing You

I miss you.

I feel like I don’t have good enough words to tell you how much my heart misses you. It feels like a pending devastation. Like you’re on the cusp of getting the worst news of your life and you know it, but it hasn’t hit yet.

That’s what it feels like.