"Kids, always recycle. TO THE EXTREME!"
This isn't a public service announcement about separating the aluminum cans and glass jars from the rest of your refuse, but about taking your discarded creative crap and fashioning something that is, if not worthy of praise, at least worthy of not being stabbed to death. If it was a person, which it's not.
Anyway, I don't really have any profound statements on the matter -- or on any matter, for that matter (no, no, I'll stop). Simply that when you excise chunks from your novel, lines from your poem, measures from your song, don't throw it in the garbage. Ever.
Within the poem below, there are two lines that are not all that new, one from a couple of months back, and one that is at least a few years old. I liked the imagery, the actual sound of the words, but they didn't fit all that well in the pieces they were initially cut from. Thus, where the hell is my highlighter? Always easier to have letters buried in the junk catch one's eye when they're surrounded by a sea of fluorescent orange, especially now that my vision seems to geometrically get worse with each passing year. Though for some strange reason, my wife, not that much younger than I, is the one who always gets the AARP and Golden Buckeye mailers, all while getting carded now and then when she buys the booze, whereas I probably have the visage of someone's old dirty uncle.
Oh yeah, my point.
The emotions surrounding something I've written, fragmented or not, are bound to resurface at some place in the space-time continuum, so, whenever I'm in a creative rut or suffering from the nasty infection of writer's block, I'll scour the cryptic, dead language of my notebooks -- I don't exaggerate, they honestly do look like some undecipherable, antediluvian code -- in the hope of being inspired, of finding something malleable. More often than not, that proves to be a pointless exercise of hopelessly rummaging through already-picked-clean carcasses, but if I'm feeling extra full of my default state of
shit sunny or even that rarest of emotions, melancholia, the pen will be kind enough to write something. Thankfully -- or not thankfully, depending on your point of view -- it was.
The maelstrom screams wishes into ash
as day and night clash within gnarled whispers
of vacant words, your binding tresses. Black
secrets beneath brought forth into twilight,
into darkening shade; hallowed murmurs
arrayed in red, steeped in ways of chaos,
submit to our immortal order. Old
omens stalk, draw life in the pained quiet –
comes the misrule of seductive hours.
Desire, you create and devour
betwixt sun and moon, so pulled down below.
O time, what do mine eyes with grief behold?
Plumes of stars reawaken paradise –
the wanton illusion, the deceiver
enthroned in the constellations above.
Draped by the empyrean adorned with gold,
this legerdemain: chasms lured from sleep
to meet your gaze and find their reflection.
Clarity struck by a graceful weapon,
the silent speech lay wreathed around our feet,
punishment birthed with each wretched step
traveling beyond greying horizons
to slumber and dream in the dying lands,
to live centuries from a verdant touch.
The flame extolled, condemned, now extinguished,
descends through the coil of smoke. Evening
begins to wander amidst the vanquished.
To the vanished, the luminous spoils,
final splendors spent in a stormy dance
of crystallized wounds now quelled by discord.
Souls ensorcelled in icy ritual
sacrifice fables for one serene breath.
Darkness slips to wrap its dreadful veil
over these mouths rich with blood. Woven lines
circumscribe all the lost moments buried
with permanence from the fatigue of love.