|patches and plans
||[Mar. 18th, 2008|01:33 pm]
it was all black and white
There are holes in everything you own. The realization that everything you hold close in some vague form of ownership being ruined changes a lot about a person. The longer you go on mending old clothes, replacing those radiator lines, getting water in that huge hole in your shoes for the sixtieth time this week, the longer you realize you can hold out. When you found out it was as simple as patching the holes you found out how strong you really were and you kept going. You didn't have any of their money, that one thing that keeps them breathing, and you kept going even after the swore within an inch of everything sacred that you had to have it to get by. |
What was more impressive was when you realized that this is what you'd been talking about all along. When you two were sixteen and scared out of your minds screaming and beating those instruments trying to get through to everyone and tell them "Its on! Its time to go! We are not safe anymore!" you were telling them to find the holes and fix them, you were telling yourself to find the holes in the fabric and replace them with time and care and productivity. Not the productivity that moved assembly lines, that shipped orders across the country, that sold units, moved shares, but the productivity that renewed and revitalized the fabric as much as it renewed yourself.
It was a long time ago when you started figuring things out, and for all that time still nothing is truly certain. All you know is that just as sure as there are towers and palaces that house those people that will never know this world or walk on these streets that you've made yourself familiar with in every town you've been in since you cast off that fear at sixteen. Those people would never know what it was to have to keep something. Those people would never know that productivity, and you would never know them. They were so distant at the top of their success that you thought them as imaginary as the borders, the embargoes, the sanctions, the law. They were all part of some vast Circus Maximus, designed to pull a veil over your eyes and every pair of eyes that you ever loved.
At the same time you saw friends and people you truly cared for or admired trapped by their spell. You saw people who had once had voices and fists be silent and passive. Others turned to fight for the enemy, some died, and still some simply would lay down and ignore the ongoing battles for want of nothing other than comfort away from danger, for anything beyond fear. And you stood in that plaza, or in that bedroom, on that street corner, on top of that parking garage, at that playground wondering the same question that had kept you stirring in bed for years, "How can you sleep at night?"
Desolation row never seemed so quiet as that night you ran away from what may as well have been a burning house where you lost your memories and heirlooms, where literally your history would burn away gently in the cool of the night. You counted those names and those friends in every town...Chicago, Memphis, New Orleans, Houston, Austin, Tulsa, Conway, Cleveland, Birmingham, Pensacola, Tampa, Athens, Washington, Baltimore, Trenton, Philadelphia, Boston...
All that seems so far away from Christmas morning when you were young, all that seems so far away from dads truck and cane fields and Willie Nelson leaking sweetly from that tiny speaker. All that seems far from the land you came from and who you were supposed to be, from what you'd learned about growing someday to be a "good man" and what you could someday do to fulfill "God's plan". But what you took from that was caught up in the distortion and the urethane wheels on the concrete. All you took from there were the thoughts of making "good plans."
And plans you made, when you found out that accomplishing goals was as simple as that. You practically had to build it yourself, but you made two legs to walk on and walked with your toes digging furrows in the ground. You made it to the end of each one of those fucked up years, each time it got its darkest you would just think "In a few months we can sing of how we made it this far together."
And so you walked down the street and you thought of some words to keep singing.