Archive for the Life Category

Credo

| December 9th, 2016

A good friend of mine got married recently. His best man, probably one of my best friends as well, had to give a speech, of course. I offered to help him with it, and he politely declined. He gave one of the most heartfelt, and best speeches that I’ve ever heard; I was touched and proud.

However, being the neurotic mess that I am, I thought about what speech I would give it I was asked. I have one for my brother, and it was alright, if I say so myself, but something sparked my imagination. The humble subject of the meaning of life.

When I was probably thirteen or fourteen, I asked my father, probably sarcastically, what the meaning of life was. He thought for a few moments, sat me down in an almost comically fatherly way, and said:

“Contentment,”

He went on to explain that he didn’t mean you had to be satisfied, or settle. But you have to be able to step back and reconcile your life as it is. You can’t give in to feelings of bitterness, or resentment. You have to take stock, and accept what you have before you can move forward.

Some years later, at my high school graduation party, a family friend came up to me and asked if I knew the meaning of life. Guided by eighteen years of wisdom, I told him to follow your dreams, and try to make sure that they outlive you. He patted me on the head; something only I would allow an old family friend to do and said:

“Not quite,”

He went on to explain that the meaning of life was something that had been written 222 years ago. “The pursuit of happiness?” I hazarded to guess. He nodded and went on to explain that he knew rich men who were miserable, who had it all, but they lost that drive. That the “Pursuit of Happiness,” is a guiding philosophy. That when you have to make a decision or find yourself in a bad situation, you have to do that which you think will make you happy. Sometimes you have to make hard choices, but you always had to keep happiness as your goal, your lighthouse in the storm.

Maybe a year or two after that, I wondered what my mother would define the meaning of life. So I asked her. She just smiled, shook her head, looked deeply into my eyes, and lightly touched my cheek.

Some years later, my father had died, and my mother was facing her second battle with cancer; breast cancer. Now, I’m the baby if the family, and we didn’t always have the hard conversations. But I happened to be only on there before her surgery.

I asked her that, should something happen, what would she want? She told me that if she were alive, but unconscious, with no chance to return, that she wouldn’t want to live; we shouldn’t keep her in life support. Then she did something odd…

She shook her head, looked deeply into my eyes, and lightly touched my cheek.

Then they wheeled her into the OR.

It was then that I knew, for her, the meaning of life was to have people who love you, whom you love in return, and with whom you can, with just a look and a simple gesture, say everything you need to say about that love.

So I say, this Thanksgiving, appreciate what you have; find some contentment.

Think about where you are going; pursue happiness.

A Minute.

| May 18th, 2016

A minute is a lifetime,
An endless echo,
A reflection of failure,
I just can’t understand,

Am I simply broken?
Unable to understand,

Are you better off without me?
Without my disfunction,

Am I be a good father?
Can I be a good husband?

I don’t think I am,
I don’t think I can,

A minute to consider a lifetime,

One wrong breath,

The right word unspoken,

A question to unask,
And another that went unasked,

A minute can be a lifetime,

A minute can take one too

Can’t you see?

| March 26th, 2016

Can’t you see, Shorty… you’re killing me…

I doubt I’ll see forty.

I’m tired of being a bad father, bad husband, bad lover,

I dream of escape, or the embrace of serenity,

I stare into the waters of eternity,

I wonder why I cannot find myself in your turbidity,

Masking happiness and tragedy, and morbidity,

I tell myself it’s sickness, and I have to be strong,

I propel myself I above your negativity,

But I die a little more each day,

In a small way,

away, away..

goodbye,

breath,

breath,

sigh.