harold_maude's journal

Life, death and the ties that bind

?% | 1

# 25996

One of the best things about living on a farm is the bonfires. They mean that a social gathering will take place and not knowing what who will come and how the evening will unfold makes these events special.
We'd been thinking about having a fire for a while, since the last one was about four weeks ago and it was to honor one of our roommates who is leaving here and heading to California.
Since he moved out and into town while he finishes the last details before he goes we haven't seen him much.
He and his girlfriend came last night.
It was a strange night. The moon was full and the people who showed up were a mix of people that haven't been here in a long time and then a couple of people who come on a regular basis.
It was very laid back, and very strange. The main topics of conversation that took place were about life and death and the ties that bind us. Death seemed to take center stage and do some weird things to the head of some of us.
One of the people we haven't seen in a long time brought a friend of his who has this tie to one of the guys here. They'd never met before last night. But they were close to several people who have died in the last few years.
One person who they both had been close to changed both their lives. From listening to their conversation with each other and the rest of us there this person who died was a unique treasure, and someone that had made such a deep impact on both of them, that as they talked you could see them both, at the same time comming close to falling apart.
This one person tied them together last night in a way that made them seem like old friends, even though last night was the first time they met.
This morning the guy who is the roommate here was still in this weird place. He couldn't understand how they had never met before even though they were both from this small town and hung out with the same person and the same group of people. All thoes years ago they had missed each other, but now this one person had finally caused their paths to cross, well more like a collsion, simply because of the impact it had on both of them.
Another person who came last night is one of the people I've absoulty love being around. She is very deep and rich inside and being around here is like drinking from a deep well of pure water. I've missed her company. When we talk about things, all the normal surface stuff doesn't exist. All the things people ususally have to plow through to get to the real of what's inside doesn't exist when we talk.
Spending time with her is like the time I've spent with people who know they are dying, the bullshit and the crap that doesn't mean anything falls away and with these people everything you share with them is very real and has meaning. I find it very sad that most people go through life having these amazing experiences, both bad and good and they almost always wait until death comes in one form or another to start sharing the best of themselves. It's sad that it often takes death to make us shed the things that don't matter and start focusing on the things that do.
That's one of the things I love best about this woman, she lives in this place inside where the important things about life are the rule of thumb and not the exception.
She and I talked about life and death and loving people and being there with them while they spend the last part of their lives finally deathing with the important things. The place where most people don't know what to do, because unless alot of people you know die with in a short time of each other, death is something that most people come into contact with only so often.
Death does weird things to your head. Makes you question alot of things, because it has this power to rip through things, like your heart and show you what might have been.
I have mixed feelings about death. In my life I keep ending up having people show up in my life when it's close or has just taken someone they love and their left in this emotional overload and can't sort through it and everyone around them is so uncomfortable with death that they all end up running away, just at different speeds.
Most people don't like talking about death. It used to be sex and death were two almost tabu subjects because both things strip you down the bare bones of who you are, and there are no places to hide and there arn't any masks to put on, it's just all there and it's in your face and all you can do is just go through it, and come out the other side if you will.
I don't like death because I end up the one having to stay behind and deal with the sorting process, and at the same time I like it because it makes people be real. It's ok to cry, scream, laugh and no one says that you can't.
I love how the irish deal with death, they have this great party and get drunk and share this person in a very real way.
I've decited that if I ever know that death is just around the corner I'm going to have a living funreal. I'm gonna throw a huge party and give all of us a chance who gather together to say everything and to love on each other and to scream and yell and leave no regrets about what wasn't said. I think that will be the best and hardest party, but it will bind us all together and hopefully the people will come will remember that every day is a good day to tell thoes people you love that you love them, because it may be the last time you get to see them....that's what I want to give the people I love as the intangable inheritance, the one gift that won't ever break down, or fall apart or loose it's value.

The end of the road. The moment when everything comes together and finally makes sense. The climatic second when it hits, and then it's done. That brief moment that passes far too fast, and happens every so often. We want it, look for it, crave it because it makes us feel alive. More alive than anything else in our lives does. Our senses are on over load and everything in our brain is going faster than we can keep up with. The end of the road.
We don't think about the journey until something triggers it and there we are again, remembering, and wanting again.
I was watching a movie tonight with a couple of my roommates and we got into a discussion about the difference between porn and erotica. And it hit me. Porn is for men and erotia is for women and I thought about why. The jorney. The passages we take that hold so much more than the single brilliant moment that passes so quickly and then it's done. But we want it again and again. But for me the journey is more important than the end. In the journey you get to experience everything. It's the road going somewhere that makes the end possible. It's more full than just getting to the end, and how you travel on the journey is what makes the end more, than just a destination.
Why the disgussion and why the subject of porn v.s erotica are so important here is because sex is one of the most powerful things we as humans particpate in. Birth and death are another two things that are equally as powerful, and there are journeys to thoes as well. Birth, being a more powerful journey in many respects for a woman because she feels the changes alone the way, and isn't mearly an observer, and death, well the person who knows the most is the one who dies. So sex is a good medium to work with.
In the process of getting to that climatic moment, we experience so many things along the way. Some as individuals, and some together. When it hits that point of explosion, it lasts only briefly, and then it's done. But the journey...the journey it's self has the potential of being more than the end, and it seems, so often that part is hurried through. I have to ask why. I think it's because we're a microwave society. Fast food, fast cars, fast life with lots of regrets at the end.
We miss our children growing up. We miss the bits and peices that there is so much to learn from. We miss all the things about relationships that can make them the spectacular shooting stars they could be, and it's all because we're in such a hurry.
We speed down the road and get to the light just as it's turning red. We need to slow down and learn to enjoy the journey, it has alot to teach us, every hour of every day. Try it some time, the next time you open your eyes take the time to look and pay attention and see what there is to learn. The next time your with friends or family or the person you love, take your time and really look and listen. See what you notice, and make note of it, savor it, hold it inside of you as long as you can, because the end of the journey will come, maybe not as fast, but it will come, and when you get there, you'll have more to take with you than a single moment, a whole lot more.


92% | 3

# 25901

The smell of summer and trees
all tropical and warm
collectivly sit on my tounge.
The uneven surface
smiles at me
from the star shaped remains
where the tree that mothered it
still remains.
Cool creamy oil assults my fingers
while I assult it's skin.
The naked soul of the fruit
declares me the victor.
There was no contest.
Summer is now flowing in my mouth.
Sweet and tart.
A rush of delight
lingering for awhile.
I loved it for a little while
and will remember it
when winter comes.


99% | 8

# 25848

I admit it. I love color. Everyone. There isn't a color I haven't met that I don't want to explore, dance around in and play with. It's the biggest major addiction in my life. I want to taste what it feels like to be that color...make it melt into nothingness and then re-surface how ever it will.
I tend to see white as something that's asleep and waiting for some passing color to wake it up, like sleeping beauty or Rip Van Winkle...it's amazing when you see it happen.
For as long as I can remember I've been like this. I would get lost in pine trees when the frost would come and get as close to the patterns of white of various shades of olive just to see the layers of color and what was going on and why the white made the olive almost disapear at times.
I get lost in sunset because it's a once in a life time show that's never the same. It can be dangerous though, especially when your standing in a parking lot with cars driving around you.
Sunrise is like watching this indgio velvet that's got diamonds all over it unfold and become this saphire elixer that keeps changing until the sun makes it's appearance...then it just gets more and more electric and there are yellows and everything from pale sea green to pink and that morning blue, good enough to drink from....unless there are clouds that go from purple to a deep misty gray...
When I'm driving, I feel kind of cheated sometimes because when your addicted to color being a passanger is the best seat in the car. It leaves room for drinking color in and when something comes into view that takes your breath away, you can get eye drunk and it's ok, except unless you stop and get out so you can explore, it only lasts so long.
When I read books on color they seem almost clinical, like your disecting them, like their just these things that have no life, no emotion, no anything. I guess I have a hard time understanding why anyone would view color as just a thing...but that's just me I guess.
Color is better than icecream or chocolate, and I have a passion for chocolate too, and it's better than money. Money has never danced the way color does, money has no music in it's surface or even inside the linen paper on which it's printed...color will romance you and draw you and make you do things that seem strange, like mixing over 900 different colors because I couldn't find the perfect pallet of watercolor...it makes the music that's inside where the artist's dreams and songs hide come out to be seen and heard, and calls the fire to the surface, and it makes your tears seem more than just tears...it has a voice, each color does in fact have it's own voice, music for the eyes, wispers to the soul of what is there, and when you answer it, and let it take you where it will, then the whole world can listen too.

The speed of thought

73% | 2

# 25777

I was watching the trees this morning. Their branches and leaves dancing to the music of the wind. Just going with the invisible flow that was all around them. I kind of got lost watching and what I began to notice is that in someplaces the trees seemed absoulty still, while in other places the leaves and branches were shaking so violently that some of the leaves left the tress to dance in the breath of the wind...an invisable timeless melody that I wish someone would translate into more reconizable notes...poetry in the sky that dips down and brushes the face of the earth. I suspect that we only get to see part of this living creative process. We get to feel it when we walk outside and a breeze catches us off gaurd and kisses us softly and giggles as it wraps and then unwraps it's self around us...and we just go on with life.
Our thoughts sometimes are like that too, in that place between deep sleep and awake time. When everything of the waking world is more still and the place where anything can happens starts to become more and more clear...I love that place, where the speed at which immages and ideas arn't road blocked by the things you have to get done. It's the place where often the answers to questions and problems present themselves, and where the surreal becomes reality. I love it when I'm there and someone is talking to me and I'm able to talk to them about what I'm seeing and experiencing.
Remembering dreams is too hard sometimes. Even after you first wake up, they seem to disapate so fast, except for thoese dreams that want to be remembered. Then you remember them. But most of the time I only seem to remember parts of dreams, but in that place in between, when some one talks to me, I seem to remember more, and it all moves at the speed of my thoughts...it's an awesome place...I think the wind lives there and the trees too, and the rest of nature. I thing they all live there and watch us as we scurry about our busy day, thinking to themselves, that we are missing most of the good stuff that happens.....that we're growing old and missing the best parts of life, both good and bad....and I think secretly they love it when we sleep, because I think that's when they can talk to us, and tell us stories, and we're caught there, and caught up....moving at the speed of the thoughts of the entire universe. No wonder I would rather stay asleep than be in the waking world.

Family by choice

80% | 3

# 25758

I heard familiar voices this morning when I woke up. It was a pleasant sound to wake up to. My brothers, outside talking about things. I couldn't understand all of what they were saying, but still it was a nice way to wake up.
My brothers. I have 3 now that are mine by choice. I've chosen them because they are the best kind of people I know. They're calm and easy going most of the time. They do have their moments, but it's not often and when they do, they don't scream or shout or throw things, or get all weird about stuff.
Their just really cool people.
It's not like it was growning up with a house full of angry people who got violent at times, formed aliences and were unsafe to be around.
I know there are thousands of people who grow up in worse situations than I did, but still it's hard when it's you.
The amazing thing about all it is that when you get old enough you can choose who your family are, the people you meet who change your life, friends that become part of your life, and no matter what happens they're there.
No matter where life takes me the guys in this house will always be my family, and if I out live them, I will feel the loss deeply, and grieve for them as if they are my blood brothers.
I wish they had been my brothers growing up. Things would have been different I'm sure, but I do know this, I wouldn't have made alot of the crazy bad choices I did, because they would have been there to listen and help.
I'm glad I have the family I do now, it makes all the hard things in life I've come up against easier, and that makes all the difference in the world.

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