College is three years behind down the road left lingering the paper-trail of an aborted degree. I have turned my facade into a quarry chipping away Doc Maartens and Oakley’s, peeling skin off TV screens and masturbating to Fox News anchors. Instead of two more years on an Art History major I am the animal-rights terrorist blowing open zoo cages I peer deep inside my self to see. I am the bathsalt nightmare flinging shit at alley walls; I am the molly nakedness supplicating gay bears at who brush across me; I am introverted by confusion not neatly parsing dreams from waking life. Wander into house parties stealing fridges for the day’s last meal. There are ghosts avoiding eye-contact on city streets and drug corners. Pallid skin cracks dehydration of bingeing month-long hangovers. There are childhood dreams folded into realistic goals, folded into consumer excess, folded into financial stability, folded into a college degree, into a part-time job, a decent apartment, into a shit-hole mattress on the floor. Repulsion and rejection folding further in, tear off the vapid and burn the social expectations burn and rot and burn and rot suburban sprawl wrapped in 10,000 count thread, ever further in. Gouged the eyes of every expectation indiscriminately, left dangling from the wire-strand lightbulb of this abandoned housing.
I read my kid Howl as a bedtime story. It’s been a while since I’ve read anything Beat, and about twelve lines into Howl I remembered why: Beat literature makes me sad.
“… angel-headed hipsters burning for the ancient heavenly connection to the starry dynamo in the machinery of night, who poverty and tatters and hollow-eyed and high sat up smoking in the supernatural darkness of cold-water flats floating across the tops of cities contemplating jazz…”
Because I used to drink turpentine in burning alleys right through to dusk behind warehouses and consumer cathedrals painted naked with despair. Because anything Beat brings it back and it makes me sad. Because I cashed in my chips for a discounted dream, because I had once been sick with longing, ecstasy, drink, drugs, paranoia, hunger and the heat of hitchhiking, that romantic pursuit of life virility and I had found what I was looking for.
And then, head between my legs, I cowered home to Write A Novel and instead got depressed, months drunk between couch cushions, but then the saving grace – I fell in love, into the Straight and Narrow constriction where there is no chaos to create the only life that’ll quench my soul.
Responsibility, the specter of death demanding the immersion of heart into Ego. I am A Family Man.
But I can still write, and fiction will be my soul’s sanctuary, and my house in the hills, farm of children and couch surfers, acid dropped into the bonfire Saturday night and passing-through vagabonds picking our fruit and whatever wayward poets our time may or probably won’t produce (pessimistic outlooking), door’s open to all the alley souls unfit for the main road.
What it all amounts to, the mania produced beneath The Main Road, is the desire to explore the side-routes, to Pioneer the Alleys — Next Post.