Between Love and Disaster

Soundtrack by Ruston Kelly “Hellfire”.

This is your life, take it or leave it

Thru your tears and laughter

Were’e all just finding our way

Ya never know what ya got

Till you find out what you’re not

And most the time there’s nothing

There’s nothing there at all

Make your choice between love and disaster 

This is your life, to use as you choose

There’s anger and there’s forgiveness 

They’re both out there waiting for you

Grab a hold with both hands

Sometimes ya win sometimes ya lose

It’s no good to go it alone

Inside your soul make a home 

Made of Glass and stone

Make your choice between love and disaster 

This is your dream, to awaken

Watching your life unfold

Some give in, some give up

Trust your heart, trust your gut

Search the edges of your thoughts

What’s illusion, what’s not

Be careful what you’re chasing after

Make your choice between love and disaster 

Reprieves And Lost Causes

Let’s get this straight, people who seek simple answers are stupid. The ones who say, “Just repeat this mantra, just take this pill, go to this church, become a vegan, do yoga, read this book, join this party, attend this meeting, be affiliated, be indoctrinated, surrender yourself to a cult, follow this preacher, prophet, shaman, sacrifice your individualism, follow these steps, support this program and on and on into perpetuation. If anyone offers you simple solutions to the myriad of life challenges, immediately run in the opposite direction. Nobody’s gonna save you———except you!

Get this through your complacent brainwashed mind, “Life ain’t simple and surely not easy”. It’s filled with tough decisions, difficult questions and complex choices. Furthermore, life is unfair. Innocent children unexplainably die while evil murders on death-row live out long heathy lives——it’s infuriating! These dreadful thoughts keep me up at night. What kind of god creates a universe that approves such horror, inequality——such depravity. 

There was a time many years ago when there were only three TV networks to choose from (ABC, NBC and CBS). There were two types of bread, white or wheat. You were either a Chevy person or a Ford person. You were a Beatle fan or a Beach Boy’s fan. You either watch CNN or Fox News. There was a time when we only required one hour of nightly news to cover the local and national fresh batch of calamities. 

Nothing is simple anymore. Is “more” always better? Maybe the Amish have it right with their horse-drawn buggies, silly bonnets and goofy black hats? Maybe enlightenment is more achievable for the Zen Monk living alone in a cave in the Himalayas, no distractions, no facebook, no TikTok, no porn. Is ignorance bliss? Was Socrates right when he said “unexamined life is not worth living”. Are the stupid people happier than the seekers? It’s so much easier to be stupid and happy rather than struggling to find yourself, to be “woke” (whatever that means?) 

Now a days, we want to see, hear and know everything. We watch with glee as our heroes fall from grace. Does the tragedies of others make us feel better about our lackluster lives? Life is no longer lived, it’s processed, deep fried, homogenized, propagandized.  We watch life through a porthole, secretly peering into others Social Network realities. We seek out others in an echo chamber that supports our beliefs. We’re overloaded with conspiracies, truthiness and artificial intelligence (oxymoron). There are now computer apps that can be programed to write college thesis papers, compose music and create original paintings. I don’t know what original means anymore. Is there an algorithm for originality? For beauty? For reality? For Love? 

What’s real, what’s illusion. What’s true and what’s bullshit? It’s all up to you because the future is up for grabs. There’s no longer a truth filter or bullshit detector. We live in a world of contradictions and complications. I don’t know about you, but I’m pissed off. Why you might ask? 

The rich pay no taxes while the rest of us fight over table scraps. Politicians sit on their asses and do nothing while our children are slaughtered in another mass shooting. We have resources to better feed and house the homeless but yet there are more starving people living on the streets than ever before. We have better medications available to save lives but pharmaceutical companies charge more than what the sick can afford. We have science that has revealed the imminent dangers of global warming, yet our governments and industries fail to implement changes that will reduce the greenhouse effect. 

This one life given, should be better lived.

Sometimes it’s a curve ball

A dear John letter

A tire with a slow leak

A misfire

Ruble and ashes

Simplicity lost

Regretful goodbyes

Cold left overs

Prayers and futility

Unexpected farewells

Stained excuses

Potholes and apologies

Pretend love

Leached out success

Players and fakers

Listing ships

Death by loneliness

Silent betrayal

Orphaned dreams

Waiting on nothing

On no one

Self forgiven

Forgotten promises

Stubborn solitude

Watered down desire

Driving alone

Getting nowhere

Squelched confessions

July Snowstorm

Unhappy endings

Reprieves and Lost Causes 

Don’t wish me a good night

I too suffer from insomnia. The night can be a prison for the over thinkers and senseless worriers of the world. So much empty time to recount all my failures, follies and faults. Things I should have said and done, opportunities missed, loves gone ill-requited. The red numbers on the bedside digital clock appear frozen in time. I consider taking a half of one of my Ambien sleeping aides, but the after effects often leave me drowsy for several hours the following morning. So, I’ll bravely stare down my meddling ghosts. 

Time is so precious but at this tortured hour time takes on a different meaning. I have what the Buddhist call monkey mind. This is when my thoughts jump from one unrelated thought to the next. What a silly ass thing to say “Good Night”. There is no such thing as a “Good Night”. there is only darkness and solitude awaiting me there. Night is where my demons and devils churn out boogiemen that hide under my bed or breathe loudly from behind my closet door. 

Are you a believer in ghosts? Do they come from within us like a dark psychoses? Or, are they materializing out of the night ether? Have you ever seen one? If god created all of the universe, then he/she (binary?) surely could include ghosts in this odd ball thing called reality. Reality is malleable, depending on whose version of reality you choose to subscribe too. There’s a fine line between reality and illusion. And, I don’t give up my illusions easily, they have sustained me up to this point. 

I hope my rants don’t scare you away my dear old friend. Maybe “scare” is too harsh of a word. Perhaps the way I connect my esoteric thoughts is too confounding.  I’ve even grown tired of my own ruminating thoughts. You’ve peaked under my covers and seen my nightmares. I didn’t formally invite you in, but now that you’re here, feel free to make yourself comfortable. I offer you my friendship and therein my condolences—–as this is a package deal.  

Love Is In The Small Things

I hold her hand

So nervous like the first time

She offers me a gentle smile

It hides a trace of pain

2 Days mean more

When they’e numbered

I can’t imagine my days Here 

Living without her

3 She use to make my meals

Use to mend my clothes 

Now there’s only shadows 

Where she made a small house our home

4 The sounds of laughing children

Once filled these empty rooms

The best of times in our life

We danced and laughed and struggled through

Those were the days

Even if we didn’t know it

Love is in the small things

Seldom seen and often go unnoticed 

1 She wants to walk in the garden

But her legs have grown weak

I help her to the window 

She shuffles her feet

2 Holding hands in silence 

Siting in the setting sun (ya see)

Love doesn’t belong 

Only to the young

3 Sunday drives in the country

Picnics by the lake

It doesn’t seem that long ago

But time moves on, refuses to wait

4 Whispers a Hail Mary

Tells me there’s angel circling

She can hear them calling

Calling her name

5 I kiss her forehead, and say

If you must go, I understand

What will I do without my sweetheart

Who I shared my life, hand in hand

Those were the days

Even if we didn’t know it

Love is in the small things

Seldom seen or noticed 

Soul Ache

I’ve been trying too hard, for to long , to be something…

I don’t even know what that something might be. For some people life just falls into place. They find jobs and love and buy houses and cars and have backyard barbecues. They don’t need to be seekers. They have their church of stone and their benevolent gods. Everything they want, is given. No questions asked. 

But not me. I spend my sleepless nights wondering about the sanctity of this life. So much bullshit. Dumb fucks are our political leaders. Rich bastards living in luxury while children in poor countries die of hunger. What passes as spirituality fails to give me peace of mind. 

These things don’t make me depressed, no——they make me sad. There is a difference between being depressed and being sad. To be depressed is a chemical thing. It can most often be cured with a pill. It can be prayed away. 

Sadness is rooted in a sense of hopelessness. It can be heard in Chet Bakers trumpet. Sadness comes from facing the futility of life. It has something to do with exaggerated empathy. Maybe it’s laying oneself open to nihilistic thoughts. I’m not depressed. I have a soul that aches, So, I know in spite of it all; I still have a soul. Heart-ache is depressing. Soul-ache is sadness.   

Life Without Love Is A Lie

I don’t wanna run, I don’t wanna hide

Finally found someone who made me feel alive

I don’t wanna waste, no more time 

Life without you, has got me losing my mind

You got me running in circles blind

You got me crossing forbidden lines

I know we both, have are reasons why

But baby, this life’s too short to compromise

Can’t get you out of my heart

As hard as I try

Life without love is a lie

Every-time we say goodbye

I die a little bit more inside

I know we both feel the same way

I want you more than words can say

No one see’s, and no one knows

The pain we feel, as we’re letting go

No one wins, we both loose

The ones we love, isn’t who we choose

Can’t get you out of my heart

As hard as I try

Life without love is a lie

Grand Canyon

Who knows why anyone ends up where they do? Or, how well they do, whatever they do, once they get there?—-that’s an odd sentence, but I like it for some strange unknown reason. Odd things and people have always been good friends to me.  Friends and family scatter, some are chasing something others are running away from something. But I suppose we’re all getting there—–wherever “there” may be? It’s hard for me to conceive that I’ve lived in Tahoe for 35 years—–and yes, where does the time go? Days go by like the raindrops that carved out the mighty Grand Canyon. Nature is patient, silent, unrelenting—-and unforgiving to those who might challenge her.
 
I noticed that I’ve used a lot of question marks in my prior sentences.  As I’ve gotten older, I realize that I have a lot more questions than answers. Time is such an abused but precious commodity. I have to remind myself of that. I’m feeling a bit nostalgic, sentimental or just kind of self conscious. Sorry if I’m not making much sense, but as you must know, that’s nothing new. 
 
The wind is howling outside my window, sometimes so hard that it shakes my house. It takes a lot to shake a house and even stronger forces to revive a love. I like the painting by Andrew Wyeth of the dog sleeping on the bed. I miss my old black Lab named Chase. Such a faithful friend. When all the world was too busy to go hiking, biking or whatever, I could always count on my Chasey-Boy to be ready and willing to go anywhere with me and I with him. Dogs are great practitioners of unconditional love. People should be more like dogs, but not pee on fire hydrants. 
 
 

In Spite Of It All

I didn’t sleep well last night, all on the account of our raggedy-ass phone call. I got up in the middle of the night and walked around in circles. The sun refused to come up, the stubborn sky remained gray from all the wild fires burning up California. I knew it was a Monday. I can feel Mondays even if I’d lived in a cave for the last year and had no access to a calendar. It smells, tastes and has the stench of a Monday. I don’t even work anymore—so it really doesn’t matter what day it is——-but it’s definitely a fucking Monday.

Music. I love all kinds of music. But as the saying goes, “There’s only two kinds of music—Good music and bad music”. But music like all art, is subjective——-So who’s to say what’s crap and what’s God smacked?

Music and writing have been good friends to me over the years. It consoled me, taught me lessons about myself and others, its given my blues a place to call home, its made me laugh and awoken the devils and angels haunting my soul. It’s my Kryptonite to stave off all of life’e bullshit–it’s given me a tiny glimpses of nirvana. 

I don’t know if I’ll ever sale one of my songs or stories and I suppose at this point it doesn’t really matter all that much to me. I’ve never written anything with the sole purpose of being published. I just enjoy the process of writing, dropping my fishing line into the abyss and seeing what I reel in——it’s always a mystery and fills me with a sense of wonder. A lot of my stories and songs are catch and release——Damn, see what I did there with that clever lil metaphor twist?

Here’s what I think. I think we should be kinder to one another. We should be supportive and encouraging. We should find ways to be complementary and positive. We’re all just fumbling around with ideas, emotions, words, melodies, rhythms and vibrations. We may not be on the same vibration, but we can be there for one another at some level. You’re the one who turned me on to the vibration concept. I believe there’s some truth to your theory. Those closet to us are the ones who vibrate at the same frequency. It’s something that once experienced requires no explanation.

The world is full of critics and nay sayers. So, am I asking you to offer only “happy” input in regards to my music? I guess I am. And if you feel this is phony—Well maybe it is. Art is a lonely pursuit and artist need supporters and benefactors. I’m sure you can come up with many reasons why this is hypocritical or of no value. You are entitled to your “truths”.  But for me, find good things to say or say nothing at all. And in return you can expect nothing less of me. And if this rubs you the wrong way, then I think it’s best to no longer send you projects—-I respect your opinion, although it differs from mine. 

P.S, Van Gough painted like a three year old. In his lifetime he only sold one painting. It’s hard to believe in yourself until the world believes in you. I think ya have to let go of what the world thinks. 

“Thank you, in spite of it all

For the good, the bad, the rise, the fall” 

VU

“I’ll be me, and you’ll be you

In the music, find me, I’ll find you”

VU
Love ya always brother,