Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Analyze this, Sigmund Freud.

I just woke up from a fairly ominous dream. I can't fall back asleep. Naturally, I'm pissed off.

So, with heavy eyelids and a kitty on my lap, I am going to attempt to refocus my negative energy. Perhaps I should write a prose of my dream? Okie dokie artichokie.

The Revenant
By E.

I sit dreaming of old times in my aged wicker chair
when the sound of thunder made me arise with raised hair.
A storm brews outside with with satanic wrath
Shrewd are my plans to be out of its path.

I close my eyes daintily and bow my head,
Hoping to escape my thoughts of overwhelming dread.
So I think of seventh-heaven, sweet-snacks, and love,
I am entombed by waltzing grass with clouds up above.

Then comes a knock, knock, knockidy knock.
The door begins its rattle, dead-bolt and lock.
I bound from my chair as frightened as can be,
who would venture the storm to come visit me?

I timorously tip-toe towards the front door.
Sweat flowing bountifully from every pore.
I reach for the doorknob with timid fingers,
in my body the feeling of dread still lingers.

I gather my poise and yank open the door.
I prepare myself to see a great horror.
But all I see is nothing... Nothing in sight.
Just the trees rustling in the darkness of the night.

I stand in speechless agitation,
then close the door with little hesitation.
I was once told this place was haunted.
Stories, I thought; to make me feel taunted.

They said that one day a man would return,
He looks for She who makes his heart yearn.
Perhaps tonight's episode was caused by this man,
and my trepidation was part of his macabre plan.

The feeling of dread is now gone now, no more do I lack.
But who knows where The Revenant is going, or when He'll be back?

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Furor Poeticus. Or maybe just because one is the loneliest number.

I wrote two poems in my creative writing class today. And I like them both.

Perhaps with a bit of revision they might be something that I can be proud of. Here they are:

Netherworld of reflections
By E.

When I am not really looking,
I do truly see:
A mirror,
the puddle,
chrome bumpers,
Her Father's storefront window.
In it a world we can never touch-
and place we can never go.
True to life, or false counterpart?
'Tis the netherworld of reflections.
Where you see and what you see reflected-
are your faces of internal reflection.
Sparkle and shine are the result of the surface-
Superficial and polished sparingly.
Alas we be brought back to reality
where one considers the invariable Truth:
Nothing really but beams of light,
hastily transmitted back into the air.

Erasing Ethnicity
By E.

The mind's vibrant color eclipses Black
and one's everyday flats edge out stiletto heels-
To a place where silk-chiffon-and-ribbon streams of thought
skip-to-their-lou in tourmaline chains.
Where the sweetest flavors of Plum and Berry
are content to be worn on the eyes, cheeks and lips-
and purposefully seek to disguise an age of obscured origins.
Allowing for the soul's mercury to plunge to icy-cold lows
we are lead scantily by multibillion-dollar demons.
Let us hope that a few still be concerned with True hue
and let them be the copper-colored hope of the future.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

I am a haunted house. But I still don't want you to know I'm haunted.

It's 2:45 am and I'm so anxious that I find myself unable to sleep. Why? For reasons which I don't wish to disclose to the general public, that's why. I do, however, think that it might be an effective use of time to channel my current melancholy energy into a positive feeling. And how better than via the means of written expression?

Actually, that's a very interesting reflection. I suppose that's why I, in general, keep coming back to this damn blog time and time again: to refocus. Sigh.

"Self-Relfections" was a piece that I wrote after I completed the Taiwan at Truman program this summer. I like to consider it an attempt at authoring my emotions about my semi-sordid past. And by "semi-sordid" I mean my former struggles with Depression, Anxiety, and Bulimia/Anorexia.

...Wow. That was sort of liberating. Writing it, I mean.

I understand that the piece is mediocre in the literary sense, but it is the closest that I have ever come to being unrestricted and frank with my friends about my life's throes. So in that sense, I suppose it could be considered profound- albeit superficial in its existence.

I'm aware that it's considered selfish for one to keep his or her experiences from others (so that they may learn from them). And I understand that I fall prey to this vice. Be assured in knowing that I hate that I am indulgent and prideful in this way.

It is a Truth that the sharing of human experience is meritorious, however, so I am going to remain optimistic about my endeavor to self-disclose. Ergo, in an attempt to put my proverbial best foot forward, I would like to promise all who read this blog that I am working diligently to correct my "problem" of keeping my past tight-mouthed. Honesty is a virtue that I hold in the highest regard, after all, and omission can certainly be considered dishonesty, can it not?

A random spur-of-the-moment contemplation: Perhaps my woebegone mood is an indicator that I am spiritually malnourished? Interesting notion. How does one experience catharsis for such an affliction? Or better yet, is there any way to absolve oneself of somber reflections without spirituality? Well, yes. There is always physical eradication.

...Actually, I SO take that thought-stream back. I'm physically healthy now. I can't get caught up in those thoughts anymore; purging is a terribly addictive response to emotional distress. I would know.

Huh. I feel better having just admitted what I did about myself. But on the flip-side I just realized that I really do hate listening to myself think. Or re-reading my thoughts, for that matter.

Ugh. I'm so anxious I'm teetering. Dang.

How about a round of peace and fucking quiet for everyone? That would be nice. The world doesn't get nearly enough of that. Besides, no one likes an emo. Oh geez. I'm being emo. I'm sorry, readers. I promise that my next post will be more chipper.

I'm going to go for a walk. Maybe pretending like I can leave will do some good.

Goddamn I need a smoke.


Monday, August 18, 2008

Self-Relfections, By Elaine Sokolowski

The Woman was not aware of the queerness of the day, or even of the restless feelings urging her to pace about the shadowed drafty lodgings of her small-town summer abode. Yet, quiet as awareness crept in like the thief of night, the raspy-clinging urge of restless fever came upon her.

She glanced wistfully at her surroundings; the fixings of her home were stylish, yet they were not grand, clean, nor trim. Despite this, it was a pleasant place to relax in the quititude that The Woman deemed necessary to calm her frayed nerves like an anointed balm.

As the fidgety feeling crept in deeper still, The Woman became uneasy and paced in front of her bathroom window, staring out bleakly and without purpose into the early-morning summer sky. The beauty of the condensation upon her window rolled in like a summer mist, and she was oddly taken by the shroud of its mystery.

Suddenly, the woman was struck by the odd silence of the moment, only to have the encounter punctuated by the revving-thrumming engine of a dump truck outside: not a lively twitter, not a sonorous hum, not even a sympathetic human voice. Only a dump truck.

In a spur-of-the-moment decision, The Woman turned sharply and sat down lickety-split in the velveteen armchair located directly in front of her bathroom Vanity.

She stared at her reflection, expecting to see nothing but a familiar face, punctuated with her Venusian smile--akin to the passing of a small white cloud before the coming of a Spring shower-cyclone. She thought of her bright, lilting laugh that rang with merriment-- the one that once you've heard it, you won't soon forget it. And she couldn't help but think, "how long it has been since I have heard you sing, sweet laughter."

She gazed without thought for a second time into the polished exterior of the Vanity. To her surprise, however, the face staring back at her was not the same in nature, quality, amount, or form as she was accustomed. When her intellect effectively deduced the true nature of the situation, she was, without warning, taken aback by the face which she saw mirroring her own. Gone was The Woman of quiet-yet-striking features; the one with the sensible and tempted stare.

In her place sat a bookishly-shy, full-figured, curly-haired Likeness, comparable to a budding rose in the bramble of a thorn bush. The hushed intelligence within The Likeness's pristine brown eyes made the woman's heart teeter with bewilderment. It was then, at that moment, that The Likeness (as though she had a life of her own,) extended her hand towards her mirrored counterpart.

The color faded from The Woman's cheeks-- certainly her eyes must be playing tricks on her! Yet, with boldness that matched the bravura of her otherworldly effigy, she instinctively reached out to graze the fingertips of The Likeness, whose petite and benevolent hand possessed a Herculean energy to which she had long since been unaccustomed to.

The Woman's palm tightened about the the tips of The Likeness's genteel littlefinger. Struck by form's regal bearing, her poise, her half-coiffed hair, The Woman noticed a ornate (but refined) diamond ring upon the forefinger of The Likeness. Awestruck, The Woman watched as the faceted gemstone sparkled in the surface of the Vanity with each shard of changing light.

It was then that The Woman really observed her counterpart's features--The Likeness's equine face and aquiline nose meshed well with just a hint of the oriental slant and cheekbones to render her exotic, and The Woman couldn't help but be overwhelmed with recollection.

Without provocation, and for seemingly no reason,
The Woman was then provided an exposition into The Likeness's mind. She saw October's vivid, golden leaves flitting across the pavement in the brisk autumn weather. Only a moment passed and then The Woman saw sky blue bunches of shy violets, drenched in the fresh scent of April rain.

The Woman understood this to mean what it was: bright optimism turned to silent panic, weighed down with lonely depression. Or was it th
e image of perfect harmony she saw, cradled between rich, crackling intellect and an affectionate, sympathetic heart?

"Who are you?" The Woman abruptly cried with fervent passion (most likely spawned by fear.)

The Likeness then shifted her weight, unbidden, and watched The Woman intently, benignly ignoring the question.

"What do you want from me?" The Woman then followed in a dramatic plea.

The Likeness only stared woefully back at the woman, cheerlessly comprehending.

The Woman, cantankerous towards her believe-ed mirage, drew her hand back to the solace of her lap.

Lowering her eyes, The Woman sat for many moments in a melancholy contemplation. She then looked up briefly, with no expression in particular, to see The Likeness gazing upon her with bafflement in her eyes. The Likeness uttered no words, but her eyes begged a single question, reiterated slowly, as if aiming to get through to a slow-witted, yet cherished interlocutor.

The Woman, however, could not hold her gaze for long. Instead she sat, ensconced in her ancient velveteen Vanity armchair, steamy libation fragrantly sweetening the air nearby. She could hear The Likeness's silent voice speaking to her intently. It took every bit of her quintessence to keep from escaping to the protection of her bedchamber (so as to avoid absorbing every unspoken word that came from the closed-mouth of arguably The Woman's greatest expert on herself.)

When The Likeness had finished her silent speech, The Woman (eyes still downcast) allowed a single tear to shed to the floor.

Then The Woman paused for another brief moment. With little hesitation (and to the wonderment of her effigy,) The Woman suddenly raised her eyes to the image of The Likeness in the Vanity mirror. This time, however, she was unclassifiable: she now stared at her counterpart through a pair of dead, black, enormous pools that passed for eyes. Her hands suddenly looked sinewy and contorted, and she was fidgeting- clasping and unclasping the hook of her simple silver necklace.

It was then that The Likeness nodded wearily, without reproach. Still shaking her head, she glided towards The Woman, and placed a single kiss upon her cheekbone, like a butterfly alighting.

Then, as fast as she had appeared, The Likeness was instantly gone.

The Woman looked up again at the mirror and contemplated her reflection. She had never looked more imposing as she sat upon the velveted chair, attired in a stiff sleeveless white chiffon dress, no hint of make-up on her imperious, commanding face.

The Woman suddenly ripped her simple silver necklace fast as greased lightening from her neck like it was macabre pendant. She promptly placed it upon the counter, and paying it no more attention, briskly rifled through her jewelery box on the Vanity. It was there that she located a stylish beetle-shaped brooch, complimented by a lavish pearl necklace that emphasized the contours of her delicate and weakly neck, which served the purpose of making her look less diseased than normal.

Her gaze was cold, almost inhuman, and as she prepared to stand, she looked into the Vanity and contemplated what she had seen, before reaching a sickly hand to her perpendicular, thinning, and deteriorating hair to rearrange one single curl that obscured her view.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

The PostSecret Challange

I saw this on and I'd thought I'd give it a try.

The PostSecret Challange:

Tell 20 influential others what they mean to you. Don't use names or identifiers, be honest, and write what comes to your heart.

1. You are the smartest person I have ever met in my entire life. Not only that, but you are beautiful, talented, and sensitive. And you are the greatest friend I've ever had. Mom tells me you aren't doing so well with things, and I hate God because of it.

2.I consider you my Father. I love you, and someday I'll make you proud.
*A request, however: Please stop hooking up with my friends. It makes me uncomfortable.

3. You always know the right thing to say to make me smile. I don't know why God made you love me so much- especially since I excel at hurting you. I'd do anything for you, if you asked.

4. I resent that I am sometimes forced to be more of a parent to you than you are to me. But on the flip-side, your pride taught me to admire and appreciate the inherent beauty of humanity.

5. I only did what you should have done. I know that I did wrong to you, and I'm sorry for that. I hope you can forgive me. I forgive you, but you will still be a d-bag in my book until you apologize to my face.

6. I gave away years of myself to you- and I'll never be the same because of it. I forgive you for everything, though. Thank you for the memories.

7. I don't think you know how much I learned from you; about life, love, and happiness. Even though we only spent a year together, I will remember you forever. You were my teacher, my confidant, and my partner in crime. I miss you terribly.

8. You're such a bitch sometimes! But I've never laughed harder at anyone's jokes than yours.

9. I've never met a wiser person. You're a walking sage.

10. Your confidence is refreshing (and your easy-going nature makes me feel safe). Also, I admire you a great deal for your courage. You would be happier if you did more listening, though!

11.This might be a bit too sentimental, but when I think of you in my head, I imagine that you are a beautiful flower... who is subject to the occasional wilting. Please don't let the small stuff get you down, ever! You're so much better than all that! I wish you could see that too.

12. In all likelihood, you were absolutely right about everything you said. I shouldn't be involved with something if I don't devote myself to it. But I looked up to you, and you hurt me a great deal with your words.

13. Generosity of spirit is a uncommon thing- and you still posses it. You're an inspiration. Please understand that I have the hardest time asking for your help. I get nervous around you- but only because I admire you so much.

14. I'm having the hardest time forgiving you. I think about what you did all the time. You've made it so that I can't easily trust people.

15. In high school, you were the pinnacle of cool to me. I don't think you realize how cool you still are. Never second-guess your uniqueness, and harness it to your advantage!

16. I've never loved anyone more than I loved you the moment you looked me in the eyes and told me the worst thing about yourself.

17. I don't know you at all. And I'm not okay with that. But I need time. I fear I would hurt you if we spoke at this moment.

18. I'd go gay for you in a heartbeat. Seriously. And I know you know too.

19. Your intentions confuse me a great deal. And you hurt me by making me feel a fool. One minute you act like you like me, then you shut off. How am I to respond when I really like you? Since your ambiguity is all I have to understand what you want, I'll assume you don't want me. But if cynicism and judgments are the causes of your indifference, than you, sir, have a lot to learn about compassion, honesty, patience, and courage. And I pity you. I'd like to remain optimistic about your character, however, so I'll tell myself that you really didn't mean to hurt me. And in that case, I'm sorry to have made you feel any less than comfortable and I wish the best for you in all things, I really do. And I hope things get better soon. Some heartfelt words of wisdom: the key to overcoming pain, worry, and indecision is by finding a balance between staying true to yourself and following virtues and experiencing their Truth.

20. The real reason I don't go to see you anymore is because I am afraid that I won't make you proud. I know I told you once that other people's opinions don't matter to me- that the "only thing that was important was what I thought of myself." The truth is that you are the one person whose opinion really does matter to me.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

I have strong feelings about apathy.

I can remember one and only one fight that I've ever had with my closest friends. We fought about the ethicality of apathy (in reference to whether a person should actively seek to voice their opinions about percieved injustices). I had strong feelings on the matter.

I was reflecting upon that fight (and thinking of the passionate spirit of a close girlfriend of mine), and I was inspired to write this:

Apathy Hath its Place on The River Styx

One should mourn the apathetic drove-
The irresolute and haughty,
Who see the world's subjective torment and its wrong
And dare not speak!
To not speak is a travesty of individualism.
There is no universal Truth
That is worthy of compliance.
At the very least we gain perspective
And learn the value of diffidence.
The catalyst for evolution and progression-
Which is needed in the quest for originality.
And freedom of expression is akin to peace.
So one must negotiate to end the hate-
For peace is a worthy endeavor.
A formidable legacy to leave.

The poem really isn't very good... but it's a start in the "exploring Elaine's ability to emote" directive.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

William Cullen Bryant approved.

I was reading some Elizabeth Barret Browning this morning (for a new perspective) and I found this poem. It hit a nerve, to say the least.

I won't delve into the crux of why this poem affected me as much as it did, but I do have some reflections that I'd like to share. I mean, I should be afforded the luxury of keeping some things to myself, shouldn't I?

Elizabeth Barrett Browning
Pain in Pleasure

A thought ay like a flower upon mine heart,
And drew around it other thoughts like bees
For multitude and thirst of sweetnesses;
Whereat rejoicing, I desired the art
Of the Greek whistler, who to wharf and mart
Could lure those insect swarms from orange-trees
That I might hive with me such thoughts and please
My soul so, always. foolish counterpart
Of a weak man's vain wishes! While I spoke,
The thought I called a flower grew nettle-rough
The thoughts, called bees, stung me to festering:
Oh, entertain (cried Reason as she woke)
Your best and gladdest thoughts but long enough,
And they will all prove sad enough to sting!

Subsequent reflections:
I am, once again, left muddle-headed (and more-than-marginally enchanted) by the complexities of the human psyche. This poem (in addition to subtly allowing the reader to be privy to the cockles of my heart,) really makes me re-visit and re-evaluate the whole nature v. nuture/ emotions v. intellect debate.

Perhaps we don't manage our earliest self-confidences; maybe we, as humans, simply aren't capable. I can recall more than one instance in the last few weeks where first encounters left me teeming with positivity, but the feeling was slighted there afterwards by creeping doubt (or "bees that sting," if you will.) And by "creeping doubt" I mean my profound talent for questioning my optimistic emotions/intuition in favor of the rational of my overly-reflective and pessimistic intellect.

Anyways. One might ask his or herself (as I did) whether there is any Truth in this observation. Interesting prompt (better suited for another day, perhaps).

Ha. William Cullen Bryant would not approve of these speculations. "Pain dies quickly, and lets her weary prisoners go; the fiercest agonies have shortest reign," he would tell me.

... and it would do me good to heed him.

Sigh. I really need to forget the pages and screens and learn to write myself on the smiles of others. Even if nothing comes of it.

In which a shadowy freedom fighter known only as "E" uses intellectual terrorist tactics to fight against her totalitarian society.