An Interesting Discourse

Hello there,

I haven’t been around in quite some time, being busy with work and more recent novel writing, but I have gotten into a game over the last few months called “Hyperiums,” and some very interesting communication has resulted from the experience.  I figured it would be a good exercise in both cataloging and sharing to place it here for you guys to see.  I may also put up more of my book soon, as I’m a good bit of the way through Chapter 6 now.

In this conversation a few definitions are necessary:

Hyps Prot.: Hyperiums Protectorate; a form of government which offers complete military protection but increased administrative and building costs. Ships also may not be built on a Protectorate planet. Once a planet has left Hyperiums Protectorate status, it may never be switched back.

FTO: Friendly Take-Over; when a player withdraws all or most of his or her military units from a planet and allows another player to take control of the planet without resistance.

NAP: Non-Aggression Pact; an agreement between alliances to abstain from military conflict with each other.

Demo: Democratic; the mode of government wherein population and civilisation level grows the fastest, but ground armies and ships are built the most slowly.

Auth: Authoritarian; the mode of government which is a cross between the Dictatorial and Democratic government types. This government type is rarely used by players save during special wartime circumstances where a Dictatorial government is not preferred.

Note: In a Dictatorial government, financial assets may be “preempted,” or ceased, at any time.  This is one of the main functions assigned to Dict. and excluded from the other three gov. types.

If others become apparently necessary, I’ll put them in later.

Alimus is a player who has requested FTO for a Hyps. Prot. planet inhabited by another player in my alliance.  This player is away for the moment, so I told him that I would check with my High Council on the matter and get back to him.  He sends me this in reply:

Message from Cmdr. AlimusRe: FTO
Yeah np mate, ive just been clearing some tags from our core and like you say i normally wouldnt bother with hyps prot planets if theyre not tagged as there isnt a great deal that can be done about it.

Having said that it doesnt exactly reflect well on our MP that hes public tagged them, so i figured id ask for an FTO, as i believe there is no reference to an exemption for hyps prot within the MP terms.

Cheers for getting back to me anyway, and ill look forward to hearing from you.

Alimus

My response to him is as follows:

Re: FTO
No worries. I’ll untag it publicly for you, in the spirit of our NAP, but I’m afraid the exemption for Hyps. Prot. is simply by virtue that it is Hyps. Prot.

I very much appreciate your willingness to communicate, however, and look forward to future dealings with you.

~ Judgend

The next day he sends me this:

Message from Cmdr. AlimusRe: FTO
I’ll accede that as they are hyps prot they cant be taken by force, but it is in breach of the NAP for them not to be FTOd

“All planets in each others territories must be FTO’d”

There is no mention of an exemption, and as such i wouldnt expect an exemption to be made.

I understand what you’re saying about prots and the general assumption that you can keep them wherever they are. However that assumption also requires that the planet owner is not signed up to a NAP or MP which would preclude them from being in the area. Normally this would be done by keeping your planet untagged and your forces in camo.

Like i said i can appreciate your standpoint, and im not going to press the issue, but i would like to point out that by keeping the planets you will technically be breaching the terms of the NAP.

Alimus

After some thought, I replied:

I full well understand what you’re saying, and I won’t move to defend said planet. I also understand what you’re trying to do, and call it apples and oranges.

I’ve honored and worked through this NAP several times in the past with disputes and misunderstandings between multiple members of our alliances. However, I’m not working under a general assumption based on extraneous rules imposed by players. I’m pointing out that, regardless of our military position, the game will not let you have that planet at such a low cost as words would dictate.

FTO is the withdrawal of military forces and resistance to attack. Even if I withdrew all forces from his planet, in agreement with the NAP, you still couldn’t take it. The NAP says nothing about switching govs, and neither does the game’s definition of FTO.

I point this out not in an attempt to rile your sensibilities, but to assert that he can still adhere to the NAP and FTO without there being any difference in the situation. I complied with your assessment that there should not be a publicly tagged planet in that area, and am aware of the extents of definition under which I toil to protect my allies.

So, once again, take care, and thank you for your communication!

~ Judgend

The conversation continues:

Message from Cmdr. AlimusRe: FTO
Before I begin, please understand that I’m not trying to be difficult, nor am I looking to have the planets handed over. I’m happy with the resolution you’ve proposed, and I’m not looking to cause any friction between our alliances.

Having said that, given the depth and verbosity of your reply I couldn’t help but point out the flaw in your argument.

Although there may be no direct mention of switching gov in the terms of the NAP or the glossary definition of FTO; simply keeping a planet in Hyps Prot is in itself a form of resistance, this is the only purpose that this government type has in the game.

Hyps Prot.: Hyperiums Protectorate; a form of government which offers complete military protection but increased administrative and building costs.

It is akin to agreeing to withdraw your military units only to engage a third party to defend the planet on your behalf. It is not the game that will not let me have the planet, but the player who holds control over that specific game mechanism.

As such I feel that this is arguably a breach of the terms of the NAP. As by keeping the planet in Hyps Prot you are offering a deliberate military resistance to the FTO of that planet.

Let me know what you think,

-Alimus

And I do:

No worries at all. Your command of ideas and the language used to communicate them demonstrated to me that this was not a war, but a debate, and I would have been disappointed if you had not lived up to that expectation.

My response is directly two-fold; first, I would agree with your assessment of third party defense if both parties were, in fact, bound by your NAP. Second, the function of government, both in this game and in real life, is strictly that: to govern.

If a planet were FTO’d simply to be defended by an unknown or unrelated force, that would not be a breach of the NAP. It does not bind that force to any prior agreement. You have admitted that if you didn’t know it was one of our alliance’s planets, you wouldn’t have attempted to take it at all. This is because you assume that our NAP affords you some sway over the barrier to your conquest: Hyps. Prot, a government, the benefits of which are entirely overseen by the game, a third party not in deference to your contract.

FTO insists on military compliance, and nothing more. That is why it is often common practice in FTO to switch governments so that the original party may retain its investments for a limited time while finding ways to recoup the loss. The plaintiff’s demands lay strictly upon the defendant’s armies, and so this move is not a violation of the NAP.

In light of these conclusions, I feel it obvious to agree that it’s arguably a breach of terms, but anything’s arguable. The crux of the issue lies in whether or not the argument is good enough. The conversation is fantastic; the argument, however, falls short.

I do appreciate your compliment on my depth and verbosity. Many players consider it an assault to be offered so many words. I am one of the few (as far as I have encountered) who actually plays this game for the rare, fulfilling conversation.

~ Judgend (Jon)

His last reply to me was:

Message from Cmdr. AlimusRe: FTO
I understand your standpoint, however it is based on several assumptions regarding the independence of the Protectorate armies and the fact that they are not bound by the NAP, and also that the function of the government is unrelated to the military defence of a planet.

You state that if a planet were to be defended by an unrelated or unknown force it would not be a breach of the NAP; the Hyps Prot armies however are neither unknown nor unrelated.

In fact they are exactly the opposite, given that the player in question has direct and total control over those armies by choosing to be in the Hyps Prot government, and knows absolutley that by keeping the planet in Hyps Prot should it be attacked the armies will arrive.

The benefits of this system are not entirely overseen by the game as you propose either; as it is up to the player to choose whether or not they will utilise this defensive option. And as such the Hyps Prot armies are not independent forces who aren’t bound by the NAP.

Furthermore, even if they were an independent force not bound by the NAP themselves, engaging their services to undertake military action on your behalf in your NAP partners core would be a breach of the NAP in any case.

Your second supposition regarding the function of government being to govern both in the game and in real life being strictly to govern, is factually incorrect. The function of government in the game is not in fact to govern; this is why it is called government type, as its purpose is simply to allow access to a range of options to the player which reflects that government type. The actual governing of a planet is left solely to the player.

And while the use of goverment types to protect financial assests on a planet may not be a breach of the NAP, the use of a government type to provide a military defence to a planet is, as it is actively and deliberately resisting the FTO of that planet.

The reason I would not have requested an FTO had the planet not been tagged, was because in that instance, had it not been possible to prove the planets owner; plausible deniability could have been maintained, and while the NAP would still have been breached, there would be no evidence to prove it had been and as such no recourse for me to follow.

I am pleased you have taken my comments in the way they were intended, and I hope that these, too, find you well.

-Alimus (Aled)

and my statements today are:

Re: FTO
Greetings again 🙂

The benefits of Hyps. Prot, a one-time-only government system, are in fact completely overseen by the game. Letter of the law dictates that your alliance and my alliance are the only members responsible for their military actions according to the NAP. If the choice to change a government is not a military action, thus not in violation in the aforementioned circumstances, then it is not here, either. Finally, as you have pointed out, that responsibility has been built contingent upon culpability, which is the weakest of foundations.

Though you have posited that resistance is the only reason to keep a planet Hyps. Prot, the government itself takes all military control and most economical benefits away from a player. In reality, remaining a Hyps. Prot. is the surest sign of deference to a treaty seeking the void of aggression, as you cannot produce any military force and you cannot infiltrate to any truly advantageous extent.

Only the military actions of our two alliances are prescribed by our pact. Hyps. Prot. planets cannot be reproduced by military force, much less any other means. The origins of such a planet are entirely up to the game, as well. As such, its existence is almost entirely out of the player’s hands. Under these circumstances (controlling a quarter of a planet in a locale not of your own choosing), true ownership is up for a completely different, and equally lengthy, debate!

In fact, the only choice that the player inhabiting a Hyps. Prot. planet does have in militarily influencing others is to switch to a different government and begin producing ships with which attack is a possibility. In my mind, that is the true act of aggression, but I would have written the treaty differently. Under current terms, an offensive act such as denying the plaintiff of an FTO economic access by switching to Demo. or Auth. is not deemed aggressive because it does not technically constitute direct military action. Under the same terms, you cannot presume that the decision not to switch a government is deemed aggressive, especially when that decision severely governs your ability to be rapacious.

The truth is that Hyps. Prot. most of all governs a player, and you have no such military treaties with the “Hyperiums Empire.” This NAP, like all other NAP’s I’ve read about, was based upon strict letter of the law, not spirit of the law. In the former paradigm, there are numerous loopholes present especially within such a short and scarcely discussed agreement as have we. Culpability should not even be a factor in the decision of actions, and it wouldn’t be nearly so present if the people discussing this NAP had taken the time to instill within it a spirit of the law mentality.

Who makes pacts in order to take advantage of those with whom they enter into agreement? Not I, and if I had my way further, there would be a more friendly atmosphere involved in this NAP business, rather than a contest of division for the purpose of seeing who can get away with what.

~

Sorry if this is too long to be interesting.  I thought about making it several posts, but decided that this would be the same basic result, and that I’m far too impatient and lazy to wait in catching you up to where I am in the conversation  XD

The “Good” Doctor

Advertisements
Published in: on September 16, 2010 at 12:52 pm  Comments (1)  
Tags: , , , , ,

Repetition (Song Adaptation – First Try)

Here it is, guys – a bit rough, I understand.  It has some noise from the breeze blowing about the window and whatnot, but I’m pretty happy with it, at the moment.  I may try to record a better quality version when I get a bit better handle on this whole sound manipulation gig, but this will do for now.  I hope you enjoy it 😀

Repetition is…
~
The dismemberment of the mind
And the atrophy of the soul.
~
“I will remember to endeavor to never forget
To follow tradition without thought, without question…
~
…without reflection of inclination or reason…”
You’ll write this 100 times, or it’s treason.
You’ll live this 200 times before your season
~
—My father’s weary eyes melt inward.
All hail the death of the majority’s hero!
Surely he knew exactly
what his father’s fathers had done—
~
“…And I won’t ask whether I’m out of line.”
As long as you cage someone else, you’ll be fine.
~
So light the lies of compromise,
then watch them all blow out like flies,
one by one, you setting sons.
~
But don’t forget that still inside
you’re kissing all sweet hells in life,
you’re full of rage, and yet so young.

Lending An Ear

Hey there, all.  I hope today finds you well…it wasn’t a good day for me, but I’m turning it into fuel for a new fire.

I was thinking to myself that I enjoy music very much, and words even more, but I never had much luck with writing songs.  I wrote a few when I was younger, but they were very specifically drama oriented and I was never proud of them.  However, I love to noodle, so much so that I already have several sets worth of purely instrumental music.  This has been a very frustrating situation for several years, now.  I have, at least to some limited extent, resolved it today!

I am devoting genuine effort to committing my poetry into song in order to drum up inspiration, and I did the first one today.  Surprisingly, it left me pretty satisfied – it is, of course, not the best song ever, and part of that is its relative brevity.  On the other hand, I can get goosebumps from it, which is obviously a very sophisticated and professional litmus test for quality.  XD

I want to show you guys how it goes, but I need to find a proper recording program.  If anyone as ideas about a simple such program which is easy to obtain, let me know.  Otherwise, I’ll have to try and search one out right quick for you.

Published in: on April 28, 2010 at 9:07 pm  Comments (7)  
Tags: , , , , ,

I shall have to make a new one….

Sorry for this, but I’ve happened upon a bit of draught, an elixir if you will.  I’m going to warn you now that this is me in a somewhat vitriolic state, so I will get a mite hateful, and it should come as a surprise because I’m not generally this way.  As the “good” doctor, however – I, too, have a layer of razor beneath my flesh.

I just got the spring issue of the Missouri Review, which includes the poetry of the woman whose poetry was deemed better than mine…and I’m going to be purely selfish about it, in this place.  The “Poet Laureate of Albany, California?”  Is that a laudable title?  That is as if I were to refer to myself as the “Poet Laureate of California, Missouri,” right?  It’s insulting, to me, that titles are the medium of credibility where words are concerned.  If I were ever a poet of any fame to be truly outdone by one with no such names, I would honestly be proud of the state of poetry.

The titles bear proper witness, though, for I cannot fathom how real worth can be found within these words: each poem being simply a set of descriptions with no message, no drive, no edge, and the incessant use of “&” in place of “and” in every poem.  EVERY POEM!  What sort of gimmick is this that I might suffer such a useless gesture?  If you’re going to do something out of the ordinary, for God’s sake, don’t make it a damn calling card.  Use it as you would a weapon – carefully and sparingly.  An excess of Salt kills the body; needless repetition, the mind.

And what is this petulant ignorance of form or rhyme?  I heard so many times in college that if I wanted to use rhyme in poetry, I should go write for Hallmark cards…what is the basis for this indemnification against such a staple bastion of poetry?  It can add so many dimensions that the abuse of its simplicity is negligible.  After all, what makes calling simple exposition poetry any better than the sense of childishness that stems from the overuse of rhyme?  This move seems like the apex of ignorance under the facade of academia…as if I proposed that every poet no longer has a mouth in order to be an acceptable poet, and any poet who speaks is a bastard heretic.

I suppose I seethe the strongest because I feel nothing from these words.  They’re meant to be words to a lover, or between lovers, or whatever ardent rote you may, but they are spoken from the pedestal of a person who is above the love of words, beyond form, and full of other instead of self.  I never used to have confidence about my writing, but I know that it IS powerful and self-contained – it contains my self, blatantly obvious to most I’ve shown it to, and I’m proud of it as I would be my children.

Apparently, however, this world contains no pride but flat.  One day, I’ll make a note to bubble past it, and if this world can’t contain me…

I shall have to make a new one.

So Seuss Me

In my last semester of college, I turned in a poem for workshop that I really loved, especially for its neat rhyming mechanics and its closeness to my developing emotional condition.  In this particular workshop, we got to share several copies of our poems and collect them back with notes from the other students for the improvement of our art.  Now, for different reasons, the poetry veterans in my college didn’t seem to look very favorably upon rhyme as a method, supposedly because it’s childish to implement and distracts from any real art in the poem (whatever).  My heart sunk when it saw a message that had been curtly scribbled in the corner of one of my copies:

This reminds me of a depressed Dr. Seuss,

staring out the window in a dark room,

as if he were looking at his tomb.

It made me angry, because she decided to take only the bad from the poem and ignore the good, thus distorting the message in a way that I can only assume was sole method of her relation to it.  I fumed for the rest of the afternoon, sitting in the back of my car and trying to figure out why it was so easy for her to cut into another person’s words like that…until I realized that she had unwittingly complemented me.  Out of these musings came the following poem, which I read aloud after recounting this very story in front of the English department at the open recital that night:

So Seuss Me

Pity like pennies

For the author of meaningless cynicisms

Meant to twist and mar progress

In justipetrification of insecurity.

~

Misunderstate me, if you will,

But I am that which sustains your apatherapy;

Pretend you don’t care for me, then scream at the top of your fingertips

At the implicomplications of my existence.

~

I sacrifice my children to you in the Bradstreet tradisedition,

But you lack the inhibition to become more than sepia

Fantasies of a sinister Dr. Seuss,

Embodying the blissful bitterness you feel

In failing to aquirequire the simplicity

Of contentment that I finally achieve.

~

Am I to grieve at the relation to a beautiful mind?

I’d sooner enter twelve dark rooms to attain his happiness

Than delve through your aversion in only one such duress.

~

If, then, flattery could be the sincerest form of imitation,

I can only be pleased with the succeeding implication.

Published in: on April 19, 2010 at 9:03 pm  Comments (7)  
Tags: , , , , , , ,

JFK was a Jew.

INSIDE JOKE by Jon and Wesley Freeland

Sketch #15: JFK was a Jew.

Wes Freeland: I think I may have found the weirdest, most ambigious rule in speech and debate: All outside sources must be cited within the speech. This refers to direct quotations, theories, concepts and general ideas.

Wes Freeland: So…like….everything? Because I’m pretty sure NOBODY in this league is going to be the first person to trumpet their idea…

Jon Freeland: So, apparently, not ALL outside sources. ONLY direct quotations, theories, concepts, and general ideas. Indirect quotations, laws, models, and specific ideas are all valid black market currency.

Wes Freeland: Aha! Loop-hole!

Wes Freeland: Take that, snobs! Your bloody rules can’t touch us when the Freeland Family interprets them!

Jon Freeland: Hell yeah!

Jon Freeland: Now, all we need are specific examples of such calamities.

Wes Freeland: Godwin’s law, and the specific idea that Hitler was a d-bag? Do those work? Can I make a speech about that?

Jon Freeland: I challenge you to tie that in with your JFK case.

Wes Freeland: “Hitler Killed JFK: Discuss.”

Jon Freeland: Then, you’re saying that Johnson was Hitler.

Wes Freeland: Wait…I have a quote from Jack Ruby saying that Lyndon B. Johnson was a Nazi of the worst order! Hitler was the worst Nazi…LYNDON B. JOHNSON IS HITLER! OMG!

Jon Freeland: HAHAHAHA, YES!

Jon Freeland: DO

Jon Freeland: IT

Jon Freeland: !

Misland

I wrote this one today with stylistic influences from Frost and Cummings, my two favorites.  However, I wrote it specifically for my friend, Beth, whom you may know by name or by her blog psuedonym, Doubtfulpoet.  I will most likely come back and explain myself more, here, later, but I would like her to see it, first – to see what you get from it, Beth.

I hope it’s not simple – I didn’t design it to be – but I also hope it can bring a message.  Sometimes, the neatest messages I find are the ones that came at me from out of nowhere, so I try to replicate that experience in my dedicative poetry.

Misland

from Frost and Cummings;

for Beth.

Every man…is a misle – every man misleads.


Life manifests in miles;

Thus, misles make up life’s manifest

and man infests this idea with doubt,

setting her self behind a redoubt.


By then, it’s already out

of hand, inclined to fall in;

outclined to fall out;

reclined to re-fall for the lie,

for she relies on it to tell her the truth, by the by.


Why the why?  Why not the when,

where the how becomes irrelevant

and The Who is downright irreverent,

or at least upleft rude?


Don’t listen to me in that tone of voice

because you misplace my attitude.


And I haven’t slept yet; I’ve still miles

to go before I manifest, too.

Chapter 1: A basement.

First chapter – if you want the prologue, it is here.  Enjoy, s’il vous plait.  🙂

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Firesale

~

That’s right, ladies and gents,

Step right up, feast your eyes

Upon the spectacle, the rare honest lament,

In its own habitat, to our surprise!

~

Everything must go!

Half price on dignity and decency!

Self-esteem is at an all-time low,

With no commitment down and no responsibility until infinity!

~

But that’s not all! Call now and we’ll include “Artists Gone Wild”

(for the sake of art, of course) absolutely free; a great gift for your child!

(She had to learn some day; it is timeless nonsense:

Teach her to be a victim by teaching him to abuse substance.)

~

Here in Collegeville, we skull only the finest angst,

Distilled from the purest confusion, no contentment added (dissatisfaction guaranteed).

~

So come visit us downtown; we’re located in the middle of our own filth,

Next to the foul language and across from any sign of happiness!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Chapter 1: A basement.

The day had gone cold like last night’s dinner. He hadn’t eaten anything since he’d moved in, and yet he’d still determined to prepare his meals on a regular schedule. It’s the way Mom would have needed, he told himself. Such superficialities were fast becoming his only scrutable link to the life that had left him behind. Ennui should have set in by now, but that would have required him to care, an ability which had continued to elude him despite his honest attempts otherwise. Called to detachment, he lived as a new man – minus the fictive resurrection or rejuvenation, and substituted for the inevitably slow abasement of college.

All his life, he had listened to stories about fulfillment as an insincere utterance which had taken root in the archaic dreams. “All his life,” had affected him in ways too complex to quickly understand or comprehend. His chest wracked in the purest combination of sorrow and anger, one he had known before, as he pulled the carved maple box from one of five green plastic moving containers in the otherwise empty northern corner of his basement dormitory. His hands moved slowly across its cherry sunburst décor; his eyes followed the waves of yellow, orange, and red as they faded into the black nether regions of the box. It reminded him of fireworks, of concert lights flowing in sheer brilliant spectrum across a humid summer night…of the sunrise that had changed his life.

Indeed, it was not the sunset that had taken his father from him, but the man may well have combusted to shed light for the world in William’s child-eyes. He thought, as he always did, to focus back on the night before, as if some clue had floated under his previous retrospection, but to no avail. Thus, the pictures that greeted Will as he cracked open the box once more assaulted him with a cruel irony: in the dark, he had seen his father, and in the light, he was gone.

This twisted perception had plagued him for the latter half of his life, but he finally came to admit that the gloom was beginning to throttle him. He had been in college for less than a day since he had said good-bye to his mother, Leanore, and yet he had found no peace in this place, which she had so often touted to him as “one of the pinnacles of his life.” He pictured her face for a moment; there always seemed to be a smile present across her Greek features, when he didn’t understand how she could, or even should, be happy. He felt as if he was the most prominent reminder of the greatest mistakes of her life. His mixed feelings played havoc with his current reactions – I want to be near her, but as far away as possible, at the same time. He grabbed his coat, a strange garment which had little to no actual resistance to wind or weather, but was still a possession he loved for its similarities in texture and odor to his family’s pug, Icarus. With both the coat and maple box in hand, he stepped across his threshold, locked his door, and proceeded to walk to Jameson Park in patterns wrought of discontent.

The trees had begun to turn against the earth, rebelling in a brilliant palette that could strangely belie the pure abundance, or complete lack, of passion. On the one hand, the colors were mesmerizing – they danced in the gentle wafting of the breeze, promising life after loss with lips painted bright oranges, reds, speckled browns, and the fading remnants of a living green. On the other, Autumn was certainly a season of dying, and wasn’t it simply a masquerade of the senses? Even blood that flows out of a body tells the vivid crimson tale of departing life….

The fact that life had kept coming back year after year halted his logical assault before it began. He found a beaten bench to rest upon, its molting structure supporting him like an ancient bird’s nest. Within this temporary sanctuary, his attention turned to his maple box, once again. His hands trembled as he lay them across its sides, finger by finger, then palms, and lifted its lid with a lingering creak.

Inside was an amalgamation of items that pitifully reconstructed his childhood. The back of one weathered Polaroid revealed a deceptively basic identity to the scene kept faithfully on the other side. He read softly, “August 31, 1993…Willie and E. with Icarus.” A familiar chill began simultaneously in his shoulders and the apex of his spine, working its way down his back as if it were late for some dire appointment. It may as well have started in his fingertips, however…the short summary contained a rime as potent as the ample glass of scotch he knew to be in his father’s hand at the time. “E.” was the only name his mother had ever offered to Will in satiation of his paternal curiosity, and even that was not often bestowed verbally. As a young child, he had not even begun to understand the ramifications of such detachments in a family, much less in a singular descriptive phrase. As a growing man, he still had trouble registering how his mother could have placed so much enmity in a single letter.

Logically, at some point, his mom and dad had to have been in love. He had often examined a space in his consciousness that housed his preconceptions of love, and refused to believe that he could exist for any other reason. His eyes slowly crossed the event horizon of the photograph’s edge when he turned it over, washing his world in acquainted tears. William searched for the love in his father’s countenance. It was there, in the way he rested his hand upon his son’s dusty blonde hair. It was in the way his mouth was edged in a smile, as if to say that he lived for such silent, secret joys as sitting on that rustic couch and watching his family delight in everything he had to offer. “That birthday didn’t seem nearly as special to me at the time,” he wept quietly and bitterly. As he reclaimed fallen moments in this practiced, almost ritualistic fashion, he understood that love had existed. However, this only seemed to add to these days when he posited existence to be an indefinite disappointment. This overwhelming assessment stretched and sealed itself across the entirety of his principles.

“Principles…,” he muttered under his thoughts. “I must have stolen them from somewhere.” He chuckled at the ironic resolution that once again sobered him from sorrow, because he had come to fully believe that they couldn’t have been a gift from his parents. His mother had kept him in the shadows of his father, deciding that seven-year-old William didn’t possess the mental fortitude to deal with the truth of his dad’s disappearance. At the time, he hadn’t known any better. He hadn’t known death before…he hadn’t known the necessities that so many eras had instilled within society. “All her lies couldn’t dismiss absence…couldn’t break the silence,” he spat. “Thanks to her, death will never mean a damned thing to me…” He suddenly realized that emotion began to stir him in uncontrollable cycles. With that disturbance in mind, he reluctantly decided, as he had many times before, to wash his hands of it.

“Speaking of the dead, I wonder if Jasper’s back, yet,” he murmured to himself. He’d been perched on his claimed park bench for over an hour by the time this wayward thought hit him. Jasper Ellis Lyle, or “Jazz” to the multitudinous girls he managed to mistreat on a regular basis, was the other inhabitant of Brighton Hall’s single basement room. William could not bring himself to think of Jasper as a roommate, but not out of some self-righteous indignation as to the caliber of his character.

William had been in their room a couple of days ago, sorting out where he was going to put the two guitars he had brought with him out of his collection. He’d barely laid his two-tone gold and white Strat in its black corner stand when the improverbial rap sounded at the door. The rhythm of beat boxing lazed around the corner, following Jazz’s smooth gait as he slipped into the room to grab his wallet and a few other pieces of minutiae. “Yo dawg, how’s mah boiiiii?” It occurred to Will that Jasper had most likely practiced that particular sliding movement to the point that he could probably stride right up the wall and be done with it.

He thought about the question for just a moment too long, and realized that he wouldn’t have the proper response if he’d searched for another week. “I’m well, thanks. How’s life treating the illustrious Jasper Lyle?” The beat boxing stopped and was replaced by muffled tittering as Jazz turned to face him. He silently chuckled at the one-two combination he’d just thrown. He didn’t figure the youth to be the sort of person who could afford expensive words, and what little he knew about Jasper told him that the fellow hated being referred to by his original name in public, much less in front of any number of girls. Will’s expression betrayed slight surprise at the upper corners of his eyes when Jazz fired right back without pause. “Man, if I wa eny betta, I’d haf ta be twins…den, I’d haf ta keel mahself fo bein so daaaym sexay!” His entourage broke out in the laughter of approval, which he apparently collected without movement and used to fuel his almost superhuman ability to disappear as abruptly as he’d arrived. William found that he both completely admired and despised that quality, simultaneously.

The simple fact was that, out of the week of orientation that Sanford College had planned, it was obvious that Jazz had spent most of his time in various female dorms instead of his own. William had used the week to move his room from home, as a sculptor would delicately relocate artwork across his studio. All Jasper had brought to the room were the remains of food purloined from other people, and miscellaneous undergarments of origins that didn’t require forensic inspection to discern.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Murmur Revisited

And so the next stanza shall follow:

Murmur

Whispers led to silence that

soft, loving curses

have known since our brazen days.

“Though appraised to be worthy of life,

all that is glitter does not gold.”

Instead, it grows old

and loses its sheen to the

keening of the knife,

~

the wail brought forth to sunder

the welcoming of

an inkling, the blink of black

on red and blue video screen:

the herald of the penniless plight.

Precious pressure is

NO man’s treasure, but he keeps

it for all his nights.

~

What follows is walk-sleeping;

silence is season

where life combines bland and loud:

a foul which may last a lifetime.

But I’d still die of young age

pacing in a cage,

like the tigers of false Spring,

lost to the sublime.

~

If all the new-found ones are

little angels, this

world will fashion its demons…

…and I hide one. Because of this, I am called

to preserve my enemy, willingly;

for few would undo

their own thread of existence –

it is killing me.

~

Published in: on March 15, 2010 at 1:36 pm  Comments (3)  
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Just Cause

To: a dear friend.

For: all the ex’s in his eyes.

Just Cause?

You’re looking for rhyme or reason

where thought never occurred to plan.

While I can give you plenty of the first,

the second ceased before it began.

~

I never wanted to break your heart.

(or maybe that’s what I had in store)

It doesn’t matter anyway,

because when you cry…you pour

~

little impotent drop of rage-borne

hunger.  Do you think I’ve never felt

the Stain of suffering?  There

was no Just Cause for my welts.

~

So, I take my little bites of heaven

in the midst of my own public hell.

I’ve nothing personal against you –

it’s really too hard to tell

~

how I will be feeling tomorrow.

Maybe just give me some time to

think?  Perhaps we could just be friends?

I’ll call you later. (It’s not me, it’s you)

~

What would make me do these things?

What would help you understand?

I do them Just ‘Cause I want to.

I do them Just ‘Cause I can.