New Directions

by dschapman

The wind is at my back; I feel it, on my back, and I move forward in time with it urging behind me. It flows over and around me and envelops my limbs. It has its way with my hair and it laps at my eyes. I taste it, on my tongue; I savor it. There is the sweet scent of spring on this breeze, like honeysuckle, the innateness of life. I let myself live with it; alive, with my hands folded behind my back, while the rushing pall of life undoes me.

For the first time in my adult life, I have gone for a run, I have been running. Like the little boy with bracers on his legs, I broke through the stiffness and pain and ran forwards, pounding my feet on the street. It hurt like hell; after only one block, I could hardly walk, and I limped and staggered home, dragged behind my dog like dead weight. But I went out the next day and I began, scared and curious, running, and this time I ran for two blocks, and my legs hurt even worse. But soon I was running three blocks, and it did not hurt as badly; in fact, I felt stronger. And soon I was running for miles, my dog by my side, like a goddamn normal human being.

But I am not afraid of limitation. I am even lucky, in my ways. I am fortunate to live on this earth and be part of it. I am fortunate to know what I know; I am powerful. I have no right to be powerful, but that does not give me license to waste it. It is time to be good, because it is in my power to be good. It is time I killed my demons off; I have suffered their wicked temperaments long enough. Gun to my head, it is time that I put down my gun. I am not Ajax, after all. I simply am not.

Limited, and less afraid. And that is almost good enough. I stumble forward through the ether, trying to keep my wits about me. I lose faith in reality, I rely on assumptions; I get lost in assumptions, the world gets swallowed up; time freezes, time splits, time carries onward without me. In a daze, my mind working furiously, I sat at my desk and I penciled in all my observations; I was left with nothing, but a blur, the graphite-grey blur of  reality, descriptive and connective. Poseidon, and I calm the waves. Aeolus, and I rile them up. There can not be angels without not-angels. There must be dichotomy, if there is to be anything at all. Duality, duplicitous and difficult to understand, is the only assertion.

I will be good, now. I will read Keynes and Aristophanes. I will try to be kind and accessible. It is not just sick and tiresome to be consumed by negativity; it is evil, and it has no place in God’s good earth. I will be an agent of goodness, and I will think simply, and postulate optimistic formulations. Life will get better, and I will leave a better world behind me. I will value simple things, inherit a petty approach to existence. I am better than this; I am stronger than the verge of death. Death can not astonish me. Nausea will not overwhelm me. Anxiety will crumble under the crushing weight of my own animal naturality, my will to survive and get better, be good. I will be good, now. Or I will die trying.

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