The Crown in the Shadow

Late in the night, when all light turns dim,

Dark wings and claws might rise within.

In the back of the closet and under the bed,

Creatures are watching from behind your head.

Footsteps and growling can sometimes be heard,

Breathing and hissing like unspoken words.

But wait, if you listen, there’s a fairy around!

That shadow you see flickering back and forth on the ground!

Up on your dresser, what’s that? can it be?

It’s true! There’s a fairy, a tiny fairy you see.

“Don’t be afraid.” It whispers down low.

“I’m here with a message. I want you to know:”

With a still small voice the fairy tried to explain,

The mystery of the shadows, simple and plain.

“Not every shadow will be what it seems.

Not every shadow is actually mean.

Sometimes a shadow just shows what’s to come,

It’s just not yet ready and soon to be done.

With morning the dark will be brought into light.

For every new day is born first from the night.

God only knows what will come of tomorrow,

So hold to that hope; you can fly above sorrow.”

With that, and a smile, the Fairy flew away.

Rarely does a Fairy come by long to stay.

But notice in the dark of your room, you look down.

That scary pointy shadow, is actually a crown.

A prince lives in your closet and sleeps in there too.

The Fairy just left to tell him about you!

See, the Price fights the dark, and is never afraid.

He rests in his bed near the shadow You made.

So don’t be afraid when the lights all go out.

In the dark there’s a Prince and Fairies about.

Bedded In Triumph

At this point it makes no difference to me,

What the world sees me to be.

I just gotta keep living my dreams, see,

I don’t wanna be the death foreseen for me.

When I look up in the mirror I’m disconnected

Thought I’d recognize the image but I’m disrespectin’

Who I know could be the hero in me, for direction;

But the darkness in the air around me’s so depressin’.

I wont acknowledge who I know that I am, because Im fighting for the man I know  I could be,

If I’m falling in the ring and can’t seem to stand, make posters and cheer for the losing ‘Me’.

Because I’m fighting for the knockout,

Teeth biting till the clock out,

Heart writing so I block out,

These emotions.

I’m holding back the fallout,

Till my doubt can haul out,

My opponent burns out.

Feel the notions.

I don’t ever start something, I don’t intend to win,

Which means my birth was not something, to run and wear me thin.

I’m in this for the long haul,

Don’t question where I’m headed,

My back may be against the wall,

But triumph’s where I’m bedded.

Flowers

Let me in, I’ll close the door. I’ll pick your heart up off the floor. 

Show me your eyes, before everything dies, can we talk? Just a bit more?

The flowers on the porch have wilted, as the seams of your soul have split; like your heart did. 

Pour blood on the medicine. Dissolve it. Dissect our problem and solve it. 

You’re gaping with wounds but you’ve stitched up your lips.

Alcohol consumes what your mouth won’t slip. 

Please… Don’t make me leave you here.

You must believe… I understand your fear. 

I wrap your quilt around your shoulders, with my guilt on ash; it smolders. 

The flowers, wilted, lose their colors. Speak to me. 

I’m not afraid, of the reflection in your eyes, like you are. Let me see. 

I know you reflect on the lies that split us, far; you and me.

I’m sorry. 

Please… Don’t make me leave you here.

Believe… I never meant to be your fear. 

Kill me… I’ll shut my mouth so they won’t hear. 

General Conversation

I smile.

But can you read it in my body language, the overflowing pressure gauge,

Like something’s about to blow?

My anxiety, triggered silently, when you speak; I fall below. 

It’s not you. Trust me. It’s not you.

Honestly true, just me, nothing new.

But can you feel it?

Can you see it in my eyes? Maybe hear it in my voice?

Maybe see it in my hands as they sweat by no choice.. of my own..

… alone … 

You’re here; talking. I hear mocking. 

Not in your words, or even your tone; 

But in the voice in my head, which I’m prone to condone..

… alone …

“Stop blowing holes in my ship!”

I yell at my crew, as they unload a clip.

A round of bullets, shot straight through;

The mutiny aboard my mind.

This panic anew. The heart skip, tongue slip, I’m drowning. 

My boat quickly sinks, in the ink on the page,

As my skull deeply thinks, in the loll of it’s cage :

Your misinterpretation of my total misconception

Of the total imperfection of my ‘horrible impression’

A confession of depression from my no doubt flawed perception

of you.

Teach myself a lesson.

Help.

General conversation shouldn’t strike an ill sensation.

Depression takes it’s tole

Compression of my soul.

Help.

…Don’t stop talking. This is good for me, right?

These words keep stalking my conscience at night.

I scream.

You can’t hear me, it echoes within.

You’ve done nothing wrong, but patience is thin. 

I do not like to feel this way.

If normal was an option, I’d be it today.

So please keep talking, I’ll learn to survive.

My eyes just blocking, the demons inside; alive. 

But to whatever you’ll say..

I smile. 

I’m good. You?

I passed by my Dentist, walking opposite directions in the grocery store isle. It took each of us a second to recognize each other, for I was not on my back with a paper towel around my neck; and He was not in his scrubs, or wearing those spy goggles he rocks on a daily basis. We did notice each other however, and in passing, a simple: “Hey!.. How are you?.. Good!” was all we exchanged.

He had slowed down more than I, and he would have no doubt stopped and had a conversation with me, if I slowed down as well. I kinda regret now, not stopping to say more, but he read my body language properly. It’s past dark, on a thursday, at a grocery store . I’m here to shop, not to socialize. 

I’ll see him in a couple of months.

As I got into my car however, my mind grew sporadic.  What if he really wanted to talk? It seems so unlikely (I’m a twenty-some year old bachelor. A patient of his; but only because my mom provides family dental insurance, etc.) but honestly, what if he wanted to say more than “Good” ?

Beyond my dentist, in the grocery store..

“good”.

What does that even mean?

I’ve heard it said before, by pastors and comedians, but what does it mean when you say “I’m good”.?.

…”I’m not comfortable telling you how my life is right now, and even if i was,

you’re probably not interested anyways.. so.. ‘good’.. I’m ‘good’…”

?

Oh, how callused we have become.

Are we all too self absorbed? Too self conscious?

We approach each other with a fear of the expression of how we feel,  simultaneously apathetic of the fears and feelings of those we have approached.

Or is it simply a waste of our time..  (?)

 

With all this (and more) on my mind, I begged the question of myself. Was I honest?

“I’m good”.

I have been doing a lot of self reflection lately. I tend to flip one of two ways.

I am incredibly blessed, life is good, God is faithful, the people around me are supportive and loving.

 – or –

I’m not good enough, ever.

Allow me to analyze, and explain.

For the most part, both are true. The change in my mood is dependent on which of these two near-facts I choose to dwell on.

I cannot even decide, in this moment, which of these to explain first..

I am incredibly blessed. There is no denying that. My parents are still together, they are loving and supportive. All my siblings are responsible, and kind; well put-together individuals. I have a tight knit crew of very close friends, many of which are off on their own life ventures,  growing fluent in adulthood. I have a steady, respectable job, with good hours and a very appreciative boss. I do not go hungry, and I have a place to sleep every night. I’m good.

The flip-side however. I have to include this, because despite these being terrible reasons to get depressed, I often overthink my own circumstances, and grow tired.

I’m a college dropout. I live in an old house, in which I split rent with roommates. I am not married, or even close. My savings account is almost entirely made up of tax returns. I still owe money, to my parents, for my car. I don’t know where I see myself in five years. I am in my early twenties, but I feel like I was seventeen just yesterday. I have been out of high-school for nearly as long as I was in, and I have nothing to show for it. I’m ‘good’.

If you have read this far, understand, I am not looking for a pat on the back, or your pity. And please don’t scold me either.

 

I take everything for granted.

I sit here at my desk, writing this blog, observing the metaphorical Pros & Cons list of my life, and I am good.

*Let me google that for you.. 
good
ɡo͝od/
adjective
  1. To be desired or approved of.
    “we live at peace with each other, which is good”
  2. Having the qualities required for a particular role.

 

I’m good. I mean that. To anyone remotely interested, or myself, reading this from the future. 

I’m good.

I often struggle with anxiety, and depression, like the future is some mystical journey in which I am tried and tested, for weakness and flaws. Like life is some kind of game for which I have never trained, or been told the rules.

And while in a sense, it is.. I’m prepared.

When I look back on where I was just two or three years ago, having just dropped out of college, and moved out. Living with roommates I did not get along with. Working a minimum wage job with higher-ups who did not appreciate me. Eating ramen noodles and frozen pizza rolls day and night… When I look back…

..I’m good!

Since the last week of december, I have Ran, every weekday before work for 10-20 minutes, and 45 minutes on Saturdays.

The only thing on my debit card over the past two weeks has been coffee and gas, not because money is tight, but because I have everything I want, and I regularly cook myself full meals at home.

I also make a 16 oz smoothie almost every day. They’re delicious. Yogurt, Berries, Milk, Orange Juice, Oatmeal, and Kale or Spinach, the occasional Kiwi.

I even started using mouth wash (or whatever you call it) after I brush and floss, which is something I have not done consistently, since my dentist made me, as a kid.

In the 8 months of my books existence, in 2014, I wrote 4 chapters. In all of 2015 I wrote 7. In these short 2 months of 2016, I have written 3. At this rate, I may finish writing it before 2017. Which would be amazing!

..and the list goes on and on.

At this point, the conclusion I would like to make, at risk of being too repetitious..

is I’m good. Ha!

When we push aside our fear of the future, the present becomes so much more clear. Wake up in the morning, breathe in the sunrise, and let the daylight put to sleep your nightmares.

I can look back at every moment of my life, including the most grand of them all, and think.. I’m better off.

Just because I am not moving as fast as I might like, and I have no idea how I got here, and I have no idea where I’m going.. does not mean I have any excuse to panic.

My mind is an endless game of tug-o-war, and here I pour water, on the solid ground, of the side I wish to lose.

My life is going by a plan, divine, and I have not one reason to be discontent.

I’m Good.

So, next time I ask someone how they’re doing, they’re going to respond:  “I’m good” .. and I’m going to pull them aside, look them in the eyes, and ask again..

“How are You?..”

I want to be the first stranger, in their entire life, to really care.

..How are you?