Six Alarms

(I love writing Punk lyrics for a band that doesn’t exist.)

I set Six Alarms on your phone

For the nights I sleep alone.

You’ll say “the hell?” at 1:00 AM.

And wake up pissed at 2 again.

Something’s wrong for sure at 3

By 4 you’ll start to know its me.

That 5th alarms the last? its not.

6 is on your Echo Dot.

If I can’t sleep you won’t either.

I hope you catch a gnarly fever.

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. 

One Week

I’m indecisive about wether I want to write about this, or not. Theres a fine blurry line between staying humble, and inspiring others to follow after you, in your generous endeavors.

I have decided to write about it anyways (at risk of appearing boastful) as a means of documentation. Later I can look back on this post, and this day, and remember both where I came from, and what type of person I was. May my future self be proud.

I’ll open with some background on me, I do not make a lot of money. I make enough to get by, plus maybe a little extra. Since I don’t have debt from school or anything else, any extra money from the paycheck (or tax returns more likely) goes into my small savings account I set up a few years ago. Assuming its not eaten alive by bills and life itself.

Today I felt led, as I often do, to reach out to someone in need. I was extremely hesitant, as I always am. Not that money is an issue for me, or that I am afraid to help people. But seeing someone on a street corner, I can only wonder, by giving them money am I enabling them? This can seem like a cruel thought, but consider with me the possibilities.

This man or woman, might have been offered real work they turned down, or they have a full time job, but make more money on the street corner. Perhaps they’re not exactly homeless, they just struggle paying the bills with their alcohol addiction, or other substance abuse. I look at a full grown man, and can’t help but think: If he has a job, he might make just as much money as I do.. in which case, giving him twenty dollars is just enabling his tobacco addiction..  Then I just want to walk up and tell them, we all have difficult lives! Own up to your mistakes and fix them! Stop begging for handouts!

While I am sure there are probably people on street corners begging for really bad reasons, it is never up to me to judge them.

Regardless, I don’t like just handing out money to someone, for them to potentially spend it on another pack of cigarettes.

I am a God fearing man however, and when that tiny little voice, dominates my thoughts and asks: Are you really going to argue about this with me?.. As I sit in my warm car in the pouring rain, watching other people drive by this (no doubt, confused) soul on the sidewalk…

I must listen.

“What do you need”?

Is what I was told to ask them, with no promise of any return.

“I’m just curious”.

I backed up my statement with a cover phrase of innocence. I awaited a shady response, a skeptical stare. The inquiry of: Why do you care what I need money for? 

None of which I received.

The back of their cardboard sign, upside down, read: Smile.

Clearly these people had done this before.

You know, when you’re nervous for something?

And then as soon as it starts, the nerves go away?

Your adrenaline suddenly does what it’s supposed to?

Everything sorta falls into place.. and it just feels right?

Yes.

“Food for the week, and oil.”

She responded.

I was so happy with the straight honest answer she gave me. No scent of alcohol on her tongue. I went on to ask if they had jobs, Her and the man, who I later learned was her husband. He did, sorta. Small jobs whenever he could get them. She was trying to collect disability again, for the scoliosis she had been born with, along with other illnesses I do not remember. She had held jobs before, just not recently. They live in a tent, in the field behind the store. The store that owned the parking by which they sat.

I offered to take them to the store. Told them I would buy them whatever they needed.

They obliged.

I found it beautiful, almost poetic, the first thing they went for, in all the store, was oil.

Not car oil, like I first assumed. Lamp Oil. They have an oil lamp. It heats their tent, and provides light when needed. Next to the oil was a broad selection of candles. Upon Her request, He grabbed two of those tall skinny ‘Jesus Candles’.. The Catholic looking ones, with angels and the virgin Mary printed on the side. They grabbed two matching ones with, the Son of God himself printed thereon, and put Jesus in the cart next to the oil.

After Jesus and Oil, they took me to the food section, and filled my cart with a weeks worth of the cheapest TV dinners in the store. I had told them I would buy them whatever they needed, and they gathered the bare minimum, spare the pack of almond joys, for which she apologized. I told her not to worry, if anyone understands the need for candy, it’s me.

Seriously though, the cheapest food items.

TV dinners.. dehydrated noodles.. off-brand soda..

Granted, what else do you eat when you don’t have a place to cook a full meal, and you don’t own a fridge, but still.. I offered to buy them whatever they needed.

Whatever.. they needed.

Dehydrated noodles.

They were ready to check out, but it was just after noon. I told them to get something hot and fresh for that moment. We went to the deli, and they got a Tub of diced vegetables, roast chicken, and potato wedges. While they stood there, deciding what they wanted to eat, the lady behind the counter asked if she could help me, instead.

“I’m with them”.

I said with a smile.

She was a little bit shocked, but the look on her face showed: she knew what was going on, with me and them, but was done making assumptions.

I was standing there in a cotton Owl City v-neck, crisp dark blue skinny jeans, a clean black snapback, and a timbuk2 man-purse.

They were both very clearly off the street corner. Torn pants, old shoes, faded winter coats, and hats, completely soaked through.

In line to check out, The man asked if he could put batteries in the cart.

I said, “Absolutely.”

They were so joyful.

“We have flashlights with no batteries”.

She said.

I believer her. They light their tent with an oil lamp.

The roast chicken from the deli, had not been properly tagged. The clerk gave it to us for free.

“Maybe God is with us”.

She said.

They were honestly two of the most polite people I have met. They thanked everyone they spoke too. They were extremely grateful. They were kind.

Thirty Six dollars.

I spend more than that, on a weeks worth of food, for myself..

..and that doesn’t include batteries, or lamp oil, or Jesus Candles.

Before I left them, after checking out, they went to eat their fresh food at the indoor seating area next to the deli.

I approached her with a twenty dollar bill.

I told her life is temporary.

I told her, when you believe in God, an eternity awaits us.

I told her I would pray for them.

I told her to stay out of the cold, have a great rest of the week, and I hope Jesus Blesses you.

She said: “He already has”.

She wiped tears from her eyes, and just stared, with nothing more to say than Thank you.

I told her, “God bless you”.

As I started to leave, He waved at me and said:

“God bless you too”.

I turned around and pointed at them both, to confirm I knew their names.

“Crystal.. and Jesse?.. Excellent.”

I said with a smile as I walked away.

Several strangers looked on, completely and utterly dumbfounded.

It was fantastic.

If you made it this far, Reader, welcome to the closing.

If all it takes is fifty six dollars, to change someones life forever, even if the initial joy only lasts for that day; it’s worth it.

It’s fifty six dollars I would have spent on sour patch kids, or an extra coffee, or something pointless on amazon.

But having someone brought to tears..

Showing them, at the lowest point in their life, that someone cares…

…Nothing is more beautiful.

I told her:

“I have never been in your shoes;

but, I would like to think if I was,

someone else would do the same”

So I ask you.. Reader..

If you lost, everything..

Could you survive a week, with nothing more, than what you’ve given this past year?

I would like to think I could. 

My Early 2000’s Punk Rock Song

Your eyes are all that draw attention.

My eyes, have made your eyes their penchant

If only, I could gaze at them forever,

Though my face, it may never manage this endeavor,

Ever.

And I’m afraid to play this song

What if she doesn’t sing along?

I don’t want to hear her apologize for leading me on.

How have you been? How has been school?

My day had been good, yours? cool.

Yes, you’re fantastic, I could stare are you for hours.

No, you didn’t ask it. I’ve been talking to the flowers.

And I’m afraid to play this song

What if she doesn’t sing along?

I don’t want to hear her apologize for leading me on.

You have the prettiest eyes, I really love your shoes.

Marry me tomorrow, at my funeral, pay your dues.

And I’m afraid of what she’d say

If she knew i felt this way.

Would someone dig a hole, and label it my grave?

I’ll be there.

And I’m afraid to play this song

What if she doesn’t sing along?

I don’t want to hear her, Sorry for leading you on.

Adrenaline Junky

I Dont Want to Be Afraid.

I’ve jumped off tall rocks and structures before. You stand on top with the water far below. A close friend, close beside.

The rock, the cliff, or bridge, the water… It’s daunting.

You both laugh, poke, pretend to shove one another over the edge like its all a big joke.

Oh, Don’t fall! 

You both know its not life or death, it’s only water. Nonetheless, its frightening.

Since neither of you wants to jump first, you both flirt. You flirt with the water. Sick to your stomach in anticipation. The sinking feeling as you fly with gravity. The flood waiting for you at the bottom. Fear.

Eventually the wind picks up, and it becomes apparent to you both; that you must either jump, or call it a day and go home.

On three, or one after the other, you both agree to take the fall.

Leaving the ground beneath you, only to have it soar over your head, is a panic. The air burns your skin, before the surface knocks the wind from you lungs, and the water is all too cold.

One of two things happens.

Always.

 

  • I look back up at the sky above me, only to realize, my friend has in fact; not jumped. They found another way down. I am alone.

 

  • Rising to the water’s surface, they are already swimming to shore. No remarks about the journey. My friend is gone. I am alone.

 

 

I bob up and down on the waves of impact, staring from a distance with confusion. The water feels so far up into my head, I can’t breath from my nose. I cough. The water is cold, my hands and feet are numb, swimming becomes difficult. I’m alone.

The trip back to shore is much longer than the jump, and the memory thereof aches longer than the climb.

 

I can only think to myself:

Why did I jump?

Why did I even climb up there in the first place?

Should I have known better?

 Why?.

              Why?!.

                           Why.

                                          …

 

To be clear; I don’t hate the fall, and the water is not always cold.

But that jump..

The jump will forever be the most difficult part, and hopefully, someday..

I will not be left drowning at the bottom, alone.

The Bleeding of My Babbling Heart

Letters.

Never sent.

Letters.

In the hand of my own worst enemy.

Letters.

Don’t let her see them. Don’t let anyone see them. Please. 

With a smirk on his face, he holds them over the edge.

“I will drop them”. He says.

Rain upon the crowd, my thoughts, my emotions. Rain on the world my planned out speeches of romance and love, never to be heard. Never to be spoken.

Rain. The tears of my eyes. The storm in my heart.

Please, No. 

The world can’t even look up. Completely unaware. My entire mind, everything unspoken, written.

Letters.

What if she finds them. Will she know they’re for her?

 

Still staring at me from the edge, His look hasn’t changed. He knows what is written. He has memorized every word. He has no way of knowing the passion behind them, but to him none of it makes any sense, anyways.

“I will drop them” He says once more.

The force inside me stops my breath short. The agony, the fire, the dread. The thought of trekking paths unknown.

Drop them. 

Go ahead. Let the world see. The core of my being. My soul cut open, served on a silver platter. Go ahead. Drop them.

Maybe she’ll understand. Maybe she’ll feel the same. Maybe she will be the first and only person to read the letters, and she will cherish them forever. Yes.

His face finally changes.

It is I.

Standing on the edge. Letters in hand. Sadistic smirk on my face. I look at myself, with a look of pleasure at my own discomfort, and  I once again cringe.

“I will drop them.”  I say.

No. Please no. 

My arms wrap around my head. Not far enough. This shell of a body covers, not enough of my being, as I long only for total seclusion.

Burry me alive.

Run my fingers through my hair. Turn in my sleep.

 

I have not written any letters.

But how dare I show her; whats written on my heart.

I stare myself down, standing on the edge, threatening myself.

“I’ll drop them”.

A sick joke.

Go ahead. Tell her. Spell it all out. Let the world know.

No.

No human being ever understands.

Not her. Not you. Not me. Nobody.

 

Letters.

If only it were all that easy.

 

I let them go.

Day, After Day… After Day.

I love, love, love, what the Above Love does,

Upon us, ever longing of Above Love’s Love.

 

I panic on a regular basis.

Take my hand. I don’t want to fall. Can I even trust one more step?

Are there any guarantees the ground before me won’t just crumble?

Life is a terrible dream. You’re half asleep, so all your surroundings are faded. Nothing more than ten feet away from you has any real shape or form. You have no real grasp of what is outside of your direct reach. You stand on flat ground, but the sensation of being off balance is tearing apart your insides, like the slightest nudge will send you collapsing to the ground. You have one hand reaching behind you, holding onto all that is stable. Yet, because it is your dream, they too are invisible, for you cannot turn around. You look at your feet, they are all you can see. The ground beneath them appears distant. Your knees are shaking, you’re sweating, everything is dark. Voices around you plead. One step. Just take one more step. Like every other day in your chaotic life, you feel like a child in their first attempt at something new.

Take my hand. I don’t want to fall. Can even I trust one more step?

Blood stops short of your hand, as you clench what rests behind you. Raising one foot, trembling off the ground, you extend a leg in front of you. For just an instant the ground disappears, your eyes roll back, consciousness subsides. The foot plummets a short distance below you, onto solid ground. You regain momentary strength, but it’s short lived. Everything is still black before you, and your heart still throbs within. Your back foot unknowingly catches up to your newly found location, and the battle continues once again, never looking back.

Take my hand. I never want to fall. How can I trust even one more step?

The ground you stand on quakes. Bits and pieces of the stone you rest on fall through the surface around you. A gaping black hole appears beneath you, as all you’ve known to exist, falls away. Your arms and legs go numb, as the ground disappears. The darkness engulfs everything around you, until nothing remains but your feet themselves, standing on thing air. Complete fear and agony overtake you, as the nothingness you have known for all this time, breaks your heart.

Emptiness.

For a moment.

Emptiness.

Gravity pulls you through the dark. Your arm still reaching behind you. You’re falling. Nothing can slow you down. Nothing can be seen. Your heart, your soul, your entire being, cries out at the dark.

Let me Go!

 

Behind you, from where you cannot see, you hear voices.

Take my hand. You will not fall. Take just ONE more step. 

 

 

Watch, with me, the birds. Can they see the air? The very ground they walk on. Can they see it? A flap of the wings, lift off.

Emptiness.

Keep going.

Emptiness.

 

What if we could fly?

Would you believe me if I told you; we are already flying..?

Each day is a flap of our wings, showing off to the world around us, and those in it. We look to the air beneath us and smile, as if to say:

Are you seeing what I am capable of?! 

I can fly. Each day, if I choose to, I soar.

We cannot see what gives us lift, and it may be a lifetime before we do.

Regardless, As a bird does not see the empty space beneath its wings.

We cannot see tomorrow.

But a bird takes off through thin air..

Can we, together, feel the wind?

Tears of Glowing Red

I’m writing, right now, just to write.

Because writing, right now, feels right. 

Imagine, with me, a world where no one ever struggled with purpose. Where no one ever wondered, what am i supposed to do today? Where no one ever wondered what they were going to do tomorrow.

Imagine, no confusion. No loss for words. No pain at loss of worth.

Imagine… Imagine. 

Imagine that world, was already here among us.

Imagine we just fail to see it.

Would we struggle with depression, would we struggle with anxiety, would we struggle with the pain of ‘no purpose’… If we knew, the depression, anxiety, and pain, were in fact our very purpose?

A tree does not struggle with losing its leaves. Losing its leaves is part of its very purpose. A tree cries, tears of blood, glowing red on the way to the ground. Over time its’ tears become exactly what the tree was needing all along. In doing so, the tree provides for everything around it, simultaneously saving its own life, and yours.

Imagine.

Nobody ever notices a tree, until it changes colors.

Nobody appreciates a tree, until it has learned to cry.