Beloved…

“My God, what is a heart?

That you should it eye and woo

Powering upon it with all your heart

Leaving nothing to chance with it

Launching your chariots and your riders

All your ships have left the bay

And you have marched out all your infantry

Leaving your cities defenseless

All for its sake

As if you have nothing else to do.”

 

“O living flame of love…

How gently and how lovingly

You awake in my bosom

Where alone you secretly dwell

And in your sweet breathing

Full of grace and glory

How tenderly you fill me with love.”

Benign…

I have developed a liking for the word benign. I don’t know where it came from, it just popped in my head a moment ago. So I have decided to give it audience, who knows, it may have some good things to offer.

Benign.

Beniiiiign.

Really has a nice ring to it. It also leaves a funny itch in your jaw muscles. The more you say it, the tinglier your mouth feels. I don’t care what you think, this is fun. It is in fact, tantalizing.

It is not a word that you are assured to encounter in everyday conversations. It is not your ordinary Joe like pants or bootleg. It is the kind of word that each time you encounter, it’s an event. You have to dress up and ensure that your make up is just right. Before you appear before him, you have to go on a three day cleansing ritual where you repent of every snide and sarcastic remark you ever made concerning his height or the slight bulge of his stomach. You have to beg for forgiveness for that day when, under the influence of free yet detestably under matured ale, you likened his belly to that of your pregnant sister.

You need to consecrate yourself lest ‘All great and mighty’ Benign spot you from afar and banish you from his presence and you get deprived of that awe inspiring aura; an aura many will liken to a controlled substance or a decommissioned drug that can possibly lead you to experience hallucinations and apparent paranormal spiritual encounters.

You will become malnourished, as though your life has lost meaning. The very essence of your existence will get destabilized and your life will fizzle down to a menial state. You will stop living and start existing. Not to mention the stigma that will follow your oh-so-humiliating experience. You will always be known as the guy who was banished by Supreme Lord Emperor Benign. You will then become an outcast and live in isolation.

Grandparents will use you as an example to their grand kids on using too much make-up or choosing the wrong shade of lipstick. They will warn their sons about using the wrong cologne or trying to pull off Neymar’s hairdo yet your head looks like a defaced overripe avocado. You will become the main subject of a unit taught in beauty school; an example of the brutality of the state in government school. Parents will beg their children not to become like you and outlaw factions will use you as a cause to rally people against the ‘oppressive’ rule of Benign.

You don’t want to be that guy.

By now I have consulted my dictionary on the meaning of the word. Benign connotes a kind and gentle individual. I’ll be honest and say that I am a bit let down. The meaning is so anti-climactic to where this story was headed. But I refuse to let my imagination be limited. So let’s create a new one.

In light of recent revelations, Benign now sounds to me like a bespectacled, middle aged gentleman who probably teaches literature in high school. His favorite color is probably brown and he always wears a sweater top over all his outfits. He is not boring but given the option of hanging out with him, you would probably choose anything else. He is possibly married to a lady called Mary-Kate or Wendy. In fact, he sounds more like a Wendy marrying kind of guy. She has brown hair and coffee colored eyes. They don’t have children but both have a weakness for toddlers. He probably helps his wife cook and wipes the dishes after she has washed them.

They seemingly live in a semi-suburb bungalow and grow flowers in their front yard. He is allergic to flowers but since his Wendy can’t get enough of them, he puts up with the sneezing and anti-histamine pills. They sound like a couple who have a lot of cats and have given them preposterous names like Marigold and Mr. Fletcher.

He is a good husband and would have probably been a good father. He has never played sports and usually avoids conflict as much as he can. He goes home every evening to basic cable TV, roasted chicken dinner with a side of French beans and carrots. He probably coaches the glee club and offers to be a substitute when one of the teachers goes on leave or to a hiking trip.

He will live a regular life with people all having the same regular comments about him. He’ll probably retire to a farm house in the countryside and grow corn and make jam. He will not have a drinking problem and drugs won’t be his cup of tea.  He will live a normal peaceful life and possibly die in his early 70s from cancer or diabetes (from all that jam). He will be buried either on his farm or the local cemetery.

This is my impression of what Benign would be like if he were a man and lived up to his definition.Or he could decide to go off script and become a pompous arrogant dictator who shot rebels out of a canon just for fun…you know, the possibilities are endless.

Class dismissed.♠

A Beautiful Mess…

You’ve got the best of both words; you’re the kind of girl that can take down a man and lift him back up again. You possess within you the power to launch a thousand ships; to make nations declare war on each other and make soldiers lay down their lives just at the mere hope of getting you back. You have it all…all that and a bag of cheese puffs.

Anybody looking at you would be instantly taken away. It is as though your presence has the remedy for every disorder. Canaries play a musical classic from the vibrations of your cords when you open your mouth and rainbows trace where your soles have trodden. I mean, I would follow you to the ends of the earth, jump off a cliff and drink molten petroleum jelly just at the possibility of sharing the same breathing space as you.

But you don’t see this. It kind of hurts when the kind of words you say turns themselves into blades that pierce deep into the heart. You are just the perfect contradiction. You are strong but are needy; you are humble but you’re greedy and based on your body language, silent curses I have been reading. Your style is quite selective though your mind is rather reckless. What a beautiful mess you are; like picking up trash in a summer dress.

Although you are biased, I love your advice. Your comebacks are quick and this probably has to do with your insecurities. You have wounds and scars that you have secured deep in your heart, away from the revealing light of day. They continue to cause you pain and anguish, more and more everyday, but you are hesitant to pull them out; fearing that it would be too painful and the sight be too ghastly. That and they may cause you to bleed out. So you hide yourself behind a pseudo identity; adjusting as it fits, so that no one will ever get to discover who you truly are lest they run off and abandon you. Yet you want to belong; you want to matter and for your presence to be significant and irreplaceable. You don’t want a car, a dog or worse, a video game to take your place. So you try all that will give you the affirmation that you crave for.

But I love you still; more with every quest of the moon across the night sky. For with every jealous rage and deafening scream, I still hold you close and stroke your hair when you are sad; with every knife throw and hot iron box inflicted wound, I still make you bread crumb coated chicken wings on Friday and pudding pie on Sunday because I know you love it. Staying with you may shorten my life via involuntary manslaughter but leaving you will end it via a broken heart. You are what gives my life significance and I would rather stay with you and die than leave and claw through my remaining days (which will probably be cut short by a needle)

For guess what? I am just as broken and messed up as you are, and I would rather be the Joker with you as my Harley Quinn than to be Bruce Wayne and want to jump out of a window, slitting my throat on the way down. You may be a mess, but you are my mess; my beautiful mess.

The Hole Between Us…

It’s like falling into an abyss, a dark hole to which there is no bottom. All you do is fall and fall and keep on falling. After the first few seconds of screams are over, your mind begins to deceive you that you are not in any immediate danger. “Maybe this is how skydivers feel”, it coerces, wanting you to drop your guard. You take a moment and consider it, “He may be right” you say. You tell yourself that it’s not as bad as it looks.

Despite the fact that you are falling to your doom, you loosen your muscles, unclench your fist and open your eyes. You begin to look around and catch a glimpse of your surrounding: to that open window over there and the doctor having a smoke behind the service delivery entrance of the cancer rehabilitation center; away from the prying and judgmental eyes that may seek to crucify him for his supposed betrayal: his inability to quit smoking. You see the teenager about to take 20 sleeping pills and the one in the bath tub with a razor blade in his hand. You see the dance tutor who is desperate to catch the attention of one of his students, whom he loves beyond that which is humanly possible but who is under the curse of the friend-zone. You see his desire to save her from all the jerks and doodoo heads that she always seems to attract but has been denied the chance to.

Your heart begins to bleed as you see all of this pain and sorrow hidden in the cauldron of night; the many tear soaked pillows that tell many a heart wrenching tale. You momentarily forget yourself, saying a prayer for them to whomever will hear and hope that theirs will not be as yours. For the author of your story has all but sealed your fate.

You are still falling, falling through time and this time, you get to watch the greatest and worst horror flick of all; worse than The Exorcism of Emily Rose or The Conjuring; you are made to watch the highlight reel of your existence; of a life you had squandered. You get a chance to see who you would have turned out to be had you made better choices: had you partied less and loved more; had you saved more and spent less; had you given your life a value tag rather than allowing it to be dragged through the Mick and Cranny for worthless relationships and short lived thrills.

I look at the man I would have become and find myself at a loss; not for words but for sight, for a vision I should have had but didn’t. I am sad; sad for the many people that have, and continue to suffer because of my selfishness; for the many that will never experience freedom or lasting fulfillment due to my passivity; the tears and anguish of those who are forever resided to their gloom, all because I was not brave enough to chase after my hearts desire.

I would have gone back, back to repentance, to seek for mercy and hit the refresh button…but I can’t. For mine is a story in its final chapter; the curtain call is in, it is time to take a bow. The show has been a disaster but that ship has sailed. As I keep falling, my audience flashes through my mind and I begin to weep; not for having failed Him, but for having failed myself in front of Him. He gave me all I needed and made all possibility possible but then I blew it. I became a disappointment and in my shame, I ran and hid from Him. I caused a rift between us, a hole, a crevice too massive to be filled, and forever it is what shall be used to describe me: the gap that separates us, the hole that stands between us.

I close my eyes and wait for the inevitable; the fate that I have succumbed to. I dread what comes next…

The Red Dress…

It has been two months and two days since the unexpected happened. A day like any other I had thought it would be; a day filled with tedious routine and chores that could kill a horse: wash the dog, weed the garden, cook and prepare for Sunday brunch when my mother-in-law (who after all this time had still not accepted me) was to come over, take the parrots to the vet, attend client meets, do our taxes and at the same time be a wife and a mother (not necessarily in that order)

Everything was very ‘rosy’ in my household at that time and the atmosphere was very tense. My marriage was going through a rough time and my two teenagers were being, well, teenagers. I mean, it was a full blown 21st century modern family. My daughter Sacha was mad at me for grounding her, confiscating her phone and taking away her car privileges. This was after I found her alone with a guy in her room at midnight and later discovered that she had snuck out to go see the Black Eyed Peas after we had explicitly forbidden it. So I had to deal with the silent daggers that accompanied every ‘Die, bitch die’ glance and every mutinous stare she gave as she pranced around the house.

My ‘big’ boy Alex was also dealing with a few things; namely a girl named Beth, for whom he soiled his boxers every night as he fantasized on what he deemed impossible. He was having a hard time making sense of all this and had, as every passive aggressive teenager would, offloaded it to his mama, begging me to find a way to remove this thorn in his flesh (though I hadn’t the slightest clue what to do). He had refused to talk to his dad about it, though he was better suited to address it because listening was not his dad’s super power.

I could not raise it up with my husband either because he was very distant with me at that time. Tomb silence, short grunts and snorts, sarcastic remarks and blank stares had been the characteristic of our marriage the previous few months. Things had started changing ever since he got that new job. I tried to be understanding that it takes some time to adjust to anew environment; that and having a female boss can be quite a lot to deal with for a man’s ego.

It started with the long working nights and the several trips out of town. Initially, I was okay with it, but then I started to miss him; my soul missed him and my body missed to strong embrace of his. Each time he would come home, he would be more distant than when he left. I tried to raise it up but it was shut down as quickly as it came up. He assured me that I was over thinking things and that all was well. He was just having some stresses at work and dealing with some ‘manly’ stuff but nothing that he could not handle. Truth is, though, it was not okay. Soon, the roses stopped coming, the dates ceased and the romance dried up. I was spent and emotionally deprived but I hung in there, for him, for us.

Then, I was thrown a curve ball on that fateful day. After running all my errands, I ran home expecting to find my boo waiting for me (He was to come home early that day). Who knows, maybe if he saw how exhausted I was he would offer to make dinner and give me a footsy rub [I knew I badly needed one]

I got home to find the front door unlocked, which was odd because my husband was more paranoid of espionage than that blonde chick from Homeland. I shouted his name but got no response. I dropped the shopping and rushed upstairs, with my heart in my hands, praying that my fears would be disproved. I got into our room and breathed out in relief when I did not see any blood. I looked around and noticed an envelope and a package with a rose on it. “I wonder who these are for.” (After not having received one in so long, it was hard to believe they could be for me. That ship had sailed). My curiosity got the better of me and I opened the envelope. In it was inscribe a short but possibly the sweetest message I had gotten in a while. “Thank you for being strong for me. I hope you like it.” With bated breath and a possible adrenaline overdose I opened the package as carefully as my impatience could allow me, hoping not to destroy my gift in the process.

What I found inside sucked all the air out of my lungs. There, in front of me was another rose flower, the pearl necklace that I had bitched about for as long as I could remember and a bottle of red wine. There was another note which said, “For my little red flower. Put it on, I have sent a limo to bring you to our secret meadow. I hope I got your size right. Look up.” I looked up at my closet door and saw the perfect dress: a Nessa May couture red dress, strapless of course. Looking at it just made me fall in love with Greg all over again. “He is such a doll”

I got dressed hurriedly, careful enough not to get a crease on my dress. It was, of course, couture. I made myself up, taking my time to ensure that every line and every shade was just right. I even got out my Poison Ivy perfume…tonight was the night to slay him once again. I got out the shoes that elevated my hinds just the way he liked it. By the time I was coming down the stairs and getting into the limo, I looked so good, I felt bad.

As the limo snaked its way to our destination, I could not help but shed a tear, not just In the sudden change in my husband but at just how adorbs I looked in that dress. My perfect little red dress that had spelt a change in trajectory, not just in my marriage but in my life.

Don’t wait up kids…it’s gonna be a long night…♠

It’s A Beautiful Lie…

It’s a beautiful lie, it’s a perfect denial. A deception that has attained maturity. It has gone through all the phases and made all the stops. It has been analyzed, revised, tried and tested. It has been carefully cooked and matured, like smooth whiskey or fine wine. It has it all, all that constitutes that which is believable. You go through it and can’t help but be swayed. You are halfway through it and have already thrown your weight behind it. It looks like exactly what the masses need. It is as though God answered this prayer personally; He didn’t send an angel, He gave this His personal attention.

It is nothing more than a statement but feels like a sacred creed; as though a heavenly being manifested to you during your hour of consecration and handed you a scroll, sealed by fire and blood, with this inscription on it. It is nothing short of heavenly. This must be how prophets feel when they have received from God. It is exhilarating yet terrifying. The word burns in your gut, like fire shut up in your bones, probing your tongue and intimidating your cords; it wants out. Everyone must hear this. Someone tell the pope, there is a new messenger in town.

With it, you believe that your heart cannot be broken and your expectations will not be cut short. It is a statement of commitment and a promise of truth that cannot be repented of. It is so real to you that you are convinced that anyone who knows what is good for them should subscribe to it. It will change their lives and spice up their existence. They will cease to just merely be, but will do so with a bang.

If only. If only someone had stopped me. If only someone had spoken sense into me; back when I could listen. For now the deception has completed its work, and I am completely ensnared. I cannot be saved now. Why is it that deception is so believable yet the truth so implausible? For I have lost all, I have forsaken all that is redeemable.

Someone run to my brethren, tell them of this impending doom, of this snake in the grass, this wolf in sheep’s clothing lest they end up like me. This beautiful lie, this perfect denial; it is an undoing, a curse worse than that of the Pandora’s Box. Warn them, implore them not to believe it, not to entertain it, or even listen to it. For hearkening to it is but a tragedy awaiting to happen.♠

The Sacred Romance…

My soul has been, and still is, searching for something; something elusive; something that deems unattainable. It has been crying desperately for this…this thing that I cannot name; neither can I describe. I just know it’s an IT…an IT that keeps me up at night when I should be asleep and that drives me to dream when I should be awake. An IT that claws at the door of my heart, frantically raising it arms in the air, wanting my attention. I search for it, yet at the same time try to shun it.

I have tried to ignore it, I have rationalized it, I have seared my conscience and numbed my heart all in a bid to silence it. I have indulged in what I know I should not and have embraced that which I know I don’t believe in just so this voice would shut up. I fall asleep with my headphones on just so the loud music can drown out its voice. It wants me…it is calling to me; it will not let me be.

Everywhere I go, I see it: in the beauty in my wife’s eyes; in the quiet intimate whisper of our unborn baby; in the clear blue sky and the constellations that garnish the night; I hear it in Adele’s ballads and 2 Chainz’s bars. I see it in every swing of Thor’s hammer and with every snide remark that escapes Samuel L. Jackson’s lips. I feel it in the rush of the wind as I walk to work and in the aroma emanating from my favorite dish as it is placed before me. It is in the chirping of birds as I walk through the park on a Saturday afternoon and the feeling I get when Manchester United wins a crucial match. It is like a whisper from the Universe; a cry from mama nature herself, calling me to a journey of the heart. A journey full of intimacy, adventure and beauty, like a fairytale, complete with its fair share of more than a little danger; to an experience of exhilaration.

Deep down, I know I want it…more than anything in this lifetime. I feel like it is what will guarantee me peace; it is what will charge me up to face every new day and will encourage me to hold on to every promise that God has ever made me. But I’m just too broken to pursue it. I am too afraid to step out and the uncertainty scares me. My heart is too fortified to even think about letting it in. I vowed to myself, in fact swore, that I would never make myself vulnerable like that again. Too many have trampled upon my heart and even more have tried it on and shoved it aside. Yet my heart will not stop weeping, whimpering in the silence of night, longing for this experience. Afraid that if it passes it by, it would have forever lost something that can never be salvaged.

So, we continue to fight, I fight by day and my heart lays siege by night. It fills my sleep with dreams that I cannot fathom and is slowly taking away all that I hold dear. Food is losing taste; I am losing the ear for good music and it has put a stop to the flow of ideas for me to pen. I am miserable; dragging by everyday, spending time but gaining nothing from it. I walk through as though in a trance, not really knowing which direction I am headed. I am like a ship without a sail, I know not where I am going, I just know that I am in motion; being pushed and pulled, tossed and turned, rising and falling. All in a bid to get me to go for that which I truly long for…The Sacred Romance.

The Lonely Stoner

It’s not a particularly interesting night. The dark sky is cloudy causing a characteristic gloom to spread across the land. The moon has long packed her bags and disappeared into the night. She could take the competition no more and has given in to the cloud’s quest for fame.

The only thing that has refused to give in to the darkness is the sole street light at the corner. All its comrades have since been turned and are now rallying for the dark side but this one has stayed resolute. It’s orange glow is fast fading and we fear it will soon succumb to the swoon of the flirtatious darkness. Periodically, it flickers with the intent to quit but, against all odds, it glows back to life. It continues to give hope for the many souls that throng it, looking for solace and salvation.

As I stand below its orange gaze, it creates a silhouette of hope and peace over my already tired and weary soul. In that brief and intricate moment, the chastening over my life choices ceases and tranquility is restored. As I stare into that dim yellow light, I am taken up into a trance, taken up into another reality where I am all I have ever wanted to be…I am happy.

The 1 a.m. wind feels cold. It causes little goose bumps to form on my already pale skin. I run my hands over my arms in a bid to keep myself warm from the numbing cold. I can feel the numerous wounds and scars on my skin as each scrambles to tell its tale of resilience and survival. It has been a rough couple of days and it’s kinda hard to imagine that I made it this far. I remember of the time when I had flawless skin (Cleopatra had nothing on me), a warm bed and people who cared for me. This is where my discrepancies have brought me to. I pull my button up satin shirt closer to my chest, hoping that it will help me brave this East London weather.

With shaking hands, I lift the smoldering cigarette butt to my lips and take a last drag; aware that it’s going to be a while till I can get my hands on another. The smoke fills my lungs, warming me up yet almost chocking me. The sensation is momentary but an oh-so-welcome relief. As the smoke dissipates into nothingness, it narrates the story of my slowly wasting existence.

It has been 3 hours since my last fix. I can slowly feel the withdrawal symptoms marshalling their troops in readiness to ambush me. I am desperate. I need to get me some; to numb my feelings; to blur my mind. I need to be back in my zone; to escape reality and to seal the voice of my conscience. If only I knew how to cure the wound in my heart and remove the scar on my soul.

The burden is too great to bear and the pain too much to take. I desire an escape, to soar through the wind on the wings of my fantasy. I wish it was easier and that things could get back to how they were; to the days of innocence and nights of peace; to rainy summer afternoons and rolling through that autumn leaves; to nights of looking up at the stars and wondering if they ever get lonely.

I don’t remember how I got here, but I know one thing for sure; I don’t want to be here. I hate this abyss, this barren wasteland with a callous heart. It has sucked all positivity out and has chocked the life of all my dreams. And to crown it all off, it has given me a bed mate who I can’t shake off; a thorn in my flesh; a habit I cannot kick; a demon I cannot cast out. It drags me down by day and keeps me up at night.

This is my plight; my fight for all eternity. For I am, the lonely stoner.♠

It Started With a Wink…

It started with a wink

The followed the whisper

The coarse rustling of your lips on my lobe

The crackling of your cords as you seduced my heart.

Sweeter than nectar and honey suckle; stronger than Samson’s will

Intriguing to the senses and appealing to the eyes.

 

I am drawn to you and I don’t know why

Your lips have wrapped a cord around my feet; pulling me with every word

The more you speak; the more encaged I become.

 

I want it, no, I need it

My every morsel screams for it

My sanity demands it

Dangling on the brink of insanity.

 

I have made up my mind, I am having it

I will hold myself back no longer

My life needs, in fact, deserves some excitement

Too many passes have passed me by

Who knows, maybe this is my chance at real and lasting happiness.

 

I step up to the plate and clear my throat. (This is it…no turning back. It is now or never; destiny awaits) I open my mouth and utter the words that promise me liberty:

“I’ll have the family special combo of 6 chicken wings, a double decker burger and large pizza, with extra fries and onion rings. Extra cheese on the pizza, the wings extra spicy and be liberal with the barbecue sauce. Thank you.”

She…

She…

That’s what is happening…

So many word combinations are running through my head right now, striving and fighting to be made a part of this writing. Adrenaline is pumping in my veins; I am trying to control my breathing lest my system breaks down and impairs me. “Be cool, chill out, just be you. I mean it’s just words…”  Truth is, I am very nervous, for I have never written about a ‘she’ before, or anyone for that matter. But I made a promise to try. Most of what I am about to say does not even make sense to me but I will try to express the picture as commensurate as it is in my mind right now…

I met ‘she’ some time back and there and then, I noticed something. Maybe it was the way she adjusted her glasses each time they slid down her nose, maybe it was that simple broad smile, maybe it was her brown eyes, maybe it was her laugh or even the lady like way that she handled her fork while eating, I am not sure. But the truth is that I noticed something…

So I made a point of asking about her from anyone and everyone who knew her. Truth, lies, rumors, judgments, assumptions, I took them all in just to have an idea of who this ‘she’ was and what it was about her that captivated me like this. I would see her everyday, at times from far others from close by while others close enough that she said hi. Each time I saw her, something about my day just brightened, down to the way I walked.

Several conversations later, by luck or by fate or a combination of both, I finally got a dinner sit down with her. Her dressing was simple but nice. She looked tired, like she had been overworking herself (again), but despite all that she still managed to laugh her all. We sat down and talked and talked on and on and on about cats and dogs and lies and truths and family and cartoon characters and this and that.

Many times I did not even hear what she was saying as I could not stop staring at her, (I know it’s creepy but don’t judge me), especially each time she was telling me a story and her eyes were dancing in rhythm to what she was saying. How she was waving her hands in the air when demonstrating something. How each time she adjusted her glasses jus to look at me, and each time she would smile, not too broad to look weird nor too narrow to look forced. How each time I told her something shocking, her eyes would widen in disbelief while balancing a laugh and a face in the most impossible form of facial multi-tasking I have ever encountered. Long story long, that was a night I did not want to end.

Maybe, I am over-analyzing, for I have a tendency to do so. Maybe I am in over my head, for I have a tendency to do that as well. Maybe I am crazy, for I am definitely known to be that.

Maybe…

All in all, peradventure I get the strength in my knees to stand in front of her long enough to bring this up, or gather the courage to tell her or decide to keep this as my little secret one thing is for sure, she is an experience that far supersedes any I have had in a while and which I hope to be around for longer. Beautiful, amazing, soul tendering moments that cause my stutter to be more pronounced, my palms more sweaty, my clumsiness more clumsy and my words to be disoriented or disappear altogether…

Such is ‘she’ to me…