jehovah witnesses at my door

jehovah witnesses knocked on my front door the other day.

two old ladies, sweet and pleasant,
with beautiful southern hats
were standing on my porch as
I opened the door.

hair disheveled, shirtless,
my tattooed body staring
at them.

they greeted me with nervous eyes
as they talked to me about their god.

they smiled, made small talk and
read their cherished scriptures
written by unknown authors.

soliciting their view of salvation.

it took all I had not to expose some of the
fallacies in their belief system. it took all I had not to remind them that
being devoutly passionate in their beliefs is not a measure of their accuracy.

but I was quiet. I let them read and I politely took their pamphlet.
I gave them a thank you smile,
figuring nice people are better off left alone in their fantasies.

as long as it gives them hope and meaning in this circus of life, you know.

as they left, I shut my door, tossed the paper into the trash
and headed out back to my patio.

I sat beside the dead ferns and the stale leaves
that have fallen from my backyard oak.
I subtly sipped my whiskey
and sucked in my version of salvation
through a cigar
and slowly exhaled it out to the gods.

and as I sat back,
trying to find my place in the book I was reading,
my mind wandered and
I caught myself recklessly
bleeding nonsensical thoughts on
fate, eternity and immortality.

damn those sweet old ladies,

they got me.

shadow

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it’s rare to find someone real,
someone with intelligence
who can speak unfiltered
on the beauty and enigma
of life. and smile too.
it’s rare.

me and you
stardust messed together
with perfect elements of
chaotic wonder,
sitting on the dock
of eternity
drinking
consumed by the
epilepsy of the hour,
gazing up
at our dazzling ancestors
laughing, as the world
blisters
one another
with ignorance.

we remained radiant
among the filth
promising each other
to never catch fire
as we walk through this flame
and we accepted
our insatiable
hunger,
our unquenchable
thirst
to turn away
from it all.

And with your
midnight eyes
your red lips
your black nails
your black dress
& heels,
a graceful martyr
of the violent night
baptized in your shadow,
the one you’ve asked me
to surrender to,
many times.

in your dark
i see a glimmer of light,
your light
illuminating
that lost place
between
past and future.

untrodden

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there are no paths
that lead to truth.
that’s the splendor
and beauty of it. truth has
no set path. no absolute.
truth is alive, living,
breathing, meandering
through our cells, penetrating
our dreams. it doesn’t rest under
the roofs of mosques,
or temples
or churches.
it doesn’t die
in bitter hearts
or suffocate
in closed minds.
the truth is alive,
chaotically so,
and will continue to
thrive, whether we
want it to or not.
let it fill you with
vigor and passion
let it lead you
to say yes to it all.

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec

henri-de-toulouse-lautrec

Moonlit nights in Paris,
the artist, tiny, staggering through
streets, dragging along
an easel
he was to set up
in the Parisian brothels
to bring a light of humanity
to these gals of the night
that was rarely seen.

The wind, tainted
with the vices of the gutter,
splashed his face as he made his way.

And the thieves, pimps and
street-walkers lurked at all hours
of the seedy night.

The artist strolled on through.

Saturated with drink, 4 day
binge, no sleep
living out the fate that he’d excepted
long ago.

His paintings captured
the bohemian nights in Paris,
the afterhours
of the most essential era for art
and artists.

The glory of 19th century Paris,
he captured beautifully.

But the whores, alcohol
and madness
finally got the best of
this postimpressionist
genius.

As it usually does.

Dying in the arms of his mother
at only 36 years old
under the blazing sun.

The sun,
which he’d spent most
of his
short days
days cursing.

Perspective from Eternity

earth-48

“Look again at that dot. That’s here. That’s home. That’s us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every “superstar,” every “supreme leader,” every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there-on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.

The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot.

Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves.

The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand.

It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character-building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we’ve ever known.”
― Carl Sagan, Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space

7 great quotes that scream out “Fuck Black Friday”

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7.  “You buy furniture. You tell yourself, this is the last sofa I will ever need in my life. Buy the sofa, then for a couple years you’re satisfied that no matter what goes wrong, at least you’ve got your sofa issue handled. Then the right set of dishes. Then the perfect bed. The drapes. The rug. Then you’re trapped in your lovely nest, and the things you used to own, now they own you.”
― Chuck Palahniuk, Fight Club

6. “The wild pursuit of status and wealth has destroyed our souls and our economy. Families live in sprawling mansions financed with mortgages they can no longer repay. Consumers recklessly rang up Coach handbags and Manolo Blahnik shoes on credit cards because they seemed to confer a sense of identity and merit. Our favorite hobby, besides television, used to be, until reality hit us like a tsunami, shopping. Shopping used to be the compensation for spending five days a week in tiny cubicles. American workers are ground down by corporations that have disempowered them, used them, and have now discarded them”
― Chris Hedges, Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle

5.  “Armaments, universal debt, and planned obsolescence—those are the three pillars of Western prosperity. If war, waste, and moneylenders were abolished, you’d collapse. And while you people are overconsuming the rest of the world sinks more and more deeply into chronic disaster.”
― Aldous Huxley, Island

4.  “We’re consumers. We are by-products of a lifestyle obsession. Murder, crime, poverty, these things don’t concern me. What concerns me are celebrity magazines, television with 500 channels, some guy’s name on my underwear. Rogaine, Viagra, Olestra…”
― Chuck Palahniuk

3. “But I’ll tell you what they don’t want. They DON’T want a population of citizens capable of critical thinking. They don’t want well-informed, well-educated people capable of critical thinking. They’re not interested in that, that doesn’t help them. That’s against their interests. That’s right. They don’t want people who are smart enough to sit around the kitchen table and figure out how badly they’re getting FUCKED by the system that threw them overboard 30 fuckin’ years ago. They don’t want that. You know what they want? They want OBEDIENT WORKERS. OBEDIENT WORKERS. People who are just smart enough to run the machines and do the paperwork, and just dumb enough to passably accept all these increasingly shittier jobs with the lower pay, the longer hours, the reduced benefits, the end of overtime, and the vanishing pension that disappears the minute you go to collect it”
–George Carlin

2. “You’re not your job. You’re not how much money you have in the bank. You’re not the car you drive. You’re not the contents of your wallet. You’re not your fucking khakis. You’re the all-singing, all-dancing crap of the world.”
–Chuck Palahniuk

1. “If everyone demanded peace instead of another television set, then there’d be peace.”
― John Lennon

Thanksgiving and Its Forgotten Lesson

Writes Jacob Hornberger:

[I]t would be appropriate today to remember that the original Thanksgiving celebrated the demise of the “spread-the-wealth” economic system that the colonists at Plymouth Rock initially established.

The story of socialism at Plymouth Rock is one that few Americans are taught in their public (i.e., government) schools. On landing at Plymouth Rock, the Pilgrims established an economic system in which all their crops would be owned in common and whose harvest would be distributed to each family in accordance with its needs. The colonists felt that such a socialist system would be consistent with their deep religious convictions.

There was one big problem, however, with this spread-the-wealth economic system: starvation. When everything was owned by everyone, people would look for excuses to avoid working in the fields and the harvests were not sufficient to keep everyone fed.

Finally, after repeated food shortages Plymouth Rock Governor William Bradford declared an end to socialism at Plymouth Rock. He announced that every family would be responsible for planting and harvesting its own crops and would be free to keep the bounty.

The result? No more starvation! Instead, a bountiful harvest and more than enough food for everyone.

And that’s what the first Thanksgiving was all about — to give thanks for the plentiful bounty that had been brought into existence through the “miracle of the market”…

Today, let us not celebrate the socialistic, spread-the-wealth system that has plunged our nation into chaos, crisis, and destitution. Let us instead celebrate the system of economic liberty that the Pilgrims discovered at Plymouth Rock. They pointed the way to an economic system that brings prosperity and harmony and that is consistent with the laws of nature and the laws of God. Today, let us not only celebrate their achievement, let us also rededicate ourselves to restoring a free-market system to our land.