Who Are You?

who

Have you ever looked into the unknown and swore you saw the past?

Were your eyes screaming “Déjà vu,” as the world ranked you in last?

Your knees, as did mine, did they bruise from being knocked down once more after the last time?

Let’s check this: How is your voice?

Lost from screaming or simply fading into everyone else’s life noise?

Did you write a battle cry or settle to live a mediocre life just in time to die?

What happened to your ideals?

Were you holding them in open, unsure hands when paid a visit from the one who steals?

Did you sell your dreams to the highest bidder?

Or instead did you sit back idly and let your unfinished work fictionally “simmer”?

Could you pick yourself up and find your inner fire?

Can I dare you to put one more match on your heart’s desire?

Would you say it is possible?

Could the unimaginable become attainable?

Really though, could myth meet mankind and thrive under the hand of the Divine?

Could you reach higher and climb the beanstalk to slay the liar?

Time is precious and warriors are few.

I’d risk my life for the good, but can I count on you?

Dragging one along to their own destiny isn’t an option in this life.

I’m sorry but I cannot always shield you from pain, anguish and strife.

With my hand over my heart I will promise you this:

When you finally connect to the conqueror within, there will be guaranteed a reclaiming wind.

Get high, stand on a box if that helps you.

Can’t you see there is so much in the atmosphere for us to do?

The impossible is bating us.

We cannot afford to lose our focus.

Are you in? Or should I count you out?

Begging to be immortal isn’t what each day is about.

 

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Appliances Are Monsters

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I like it when appliances break.
It scares me that with a “lifetime warranty” an appliance can outlive me. I have dreams and goals but I have so little time to fulfill them. That pile of metal over there needs only to perform trivial tasks on a day-to-day basis and yet we are allotted the same time span?
Remind me who makes these rules again.
I’m going to defy you Father Time. One of these days I’ll catch fire and rebel. Prepare yourself.
I find myself glaring at the oven. I know it isn’t alive but in my frustration I feel that it teases me. As I run past it periodically throughout the day trying to make it to my next errand that oven gloats,”We’re on the same timetable, don’t forget.”
I microwave most of my food now.
Microwaves seem like a more mild appliance. Like a drunk uncle that randomly writes you big checks. Sorry, tangent.
Anyway, the whole world is bursting with opportunity but I have only two hands to grasp ahold of what I want. I have small hands too. Gosh. Amid my clock ranting, my small hands and my frustration (coupled with that oven teasing me) I’m reminded that I have barely any time. As another day slips through my fingers I sit and wonder if I spent my time wisely. I search my brain for answers but I look at my watch because deep thinking cuts at my time. That appliance just
sits there and enjoys its life. It works only when it is forced to and it is rewarded with rest for the remaining 23.5 hours of the day. It never worries, it never has conflicting commitments. I envy that villain.
I deserve more time. “Lifetime warranty” is a terrible idea.
It all works out though because every time I need a new toaster I feel as though I laugh at the life of cheap appliances, for those things cannot be alive the day I am not. Those tiny monster machines with no real agenda finally have to admit that I deserve more time than them. As I throw the fried toaster away I see that I’m winning. I pull the trash can across the kitchen floor. I want the oven to witness this.
THUD.
Every victory is sweet.
I’ll make the most of my time. I might use some of that time to sabotage my oven though.

To You, Jack


“Answer me.
Come on. This isn’t a game.”
Running my fingers through my hair I see why he did it. He’s always been this way.
Calm down.
“Look at me. Life happens. We all make mistakes. You’ll be fine but you need to change.”

Hey, the above conversation changed my life and I didn’t know it.

Jack.
My best friend. How could he? Does he have any idea what he means to me? Why would he do that? He knows being a troublemaker isn’t ever a good idea. What will his mom do? She doesn’t need this.

Hey, the above conversation never actually took place, but I wish it had.

Jack.
I can tell you some funny stories about Jack, he’s my family. I’m really close to him in a distant way but that’s always worked for us. A couple years back Jack changed. He went from my buddy to someone I didn’t know. Life at night makes certain promises to wandering teens. He believed them and the boy who once sat under the evergreen with me was gone the second he breathed in the smoke of those burning promises.
I got a call.
WHAT HAPPENED?
Jack was in an accident, there is head trauma involved somehow and I’m 4 hours away.

Jack.

I was so afraid. I should’ve talked to him when the trouble started. Was it too late now? Did I have the opportunity to save his life but my pride choked the light out of my intentions?
I couldn’t forgive myself. If I lost him…

Jack healed. But I haven’t talked to him about it, even now. I don’t want him to think that I’m judging him because I’m not. I just want him to see his worth and potential. He doesn’t need drugs, more jail time or another intervention. He needs someone to love him more than anyone else. I need to look out for him.
He isn’t the same.
You aren’t the same, Jack. But one day I will have to courage to talk to you. Until then, I’ve written out my heart on the topic of you. You’re family, I’m sorry I haven’t been the family you deserve through all of this.
To you, Jack,
I love you for what it is worth. You have a greatness in you.

Tonight, I am Young…

So often when I write I feel this overwhelmingly-over the top- insane desire to voice my maturity. You see, I don’t like telling my age because I feel like the number of my years doesn’t match the number of my soul. But tonight, well, tonight I am young…

The music starts, we’ve all heard this tune before. This melody alone closes one door and opens another. I feel that sense of change and I jump into the craziness that is my future just as I jumped into a twirling jump rope as a girl; careless and daring. I smile but it doesn’t quite hit me yet. This is it. After four years we are moving on. He will set down his diploma to grab the controls of a fighter jet. She frames her diploma so that when she uses a scalpel it isn’t considered a crime. Me on the other hand…I graze my hand over this coveted paper as if to wipe my slate clean. With my past accomplishments I wipe away my childish fears and my insecure questioning so that moving on is that much easier.

I catch his eye more than once and my heart hurts that sometimes things happen that pull people apart. But with this happening I’ve learned something: pick up on the subtle hints, they tell you all about a person. She talks louder than anyone but I know her heart is good. We never talked much due to my bystander mentality but I wish her the best. My, this is harder than I thought.

Daily I went to the designated buildings and sat through classes. Some days were an absolute party but most days I said, “I can’t wait to get out of here,” and I carried that belief to the end. I wanted to get out, but now I see that I will miss more than I had originally calculated. In these past four years, I was allowed to be young. I lived a slightly spontaneous, mildly manic life and that is one thing you won’t see in my notebook of regrets. Tonight I told myself to write “Fin” and turn the page. Tonight I am young…

This white page is daunting. I could do so many things but for now, I will write simply this:

The world never stops, do something that changes this. Love furiously, listen intently and live intentionally.

I will have my whole life to show off my love for the future but for right now, in this moment, I will lay down in my youth and sleep knowing that I will forever be moving forward and never return backward.

Tonight, I am frozen in time. Years from now this outfit and hair style will be nothing more than a memory in picture form. I will show my children and they will marvel at my youth, for they will have never known this version of me. I will breathe in the cold oxygen of what tomorrow will hold but for now I will choose to hold my breath and enjoy this night. I will hold the hands of time still and fight the oncoming trucks that blind me with their headlights of possibility. I will stomp my rising platform down and I will tell the world to stay awake for a little while longer. Tonight, I am young. I will run one last time into that uneven forest of adolescence and I will set off fireworks, everyone will know I am here. I will jump into the fountain and splash around in what Ponce de Leon died seeking. For in this moment I am drenched in the youth he hunted. I will dance without music because my heart will replay my favorite memories and that is the sweetest music. I will find my Leonardo and tell him to travel the world with me. Tears will fall only because of the beauty my eyes witness. Laughter will be the fuel that moves my legs toward my goals. There will be a lot of winking in my last rampage of remembering, sarcasm and tomfoolery never go out of style. I will pull that chair out from under father time and I will soak my obstacles’ hands in warm water as they sleep. I’ll try to rip a table cloth off of a table like the magicians. I will start to count the stars in the sky, and then I’ll restart and restart. I will sing louder than the birds, after all, I have thumbs so I am superior. I will grab my paintbrush and my cherry red paint…I will paint the town red. I’ll skip down the avenue of adventure and I’ll giggle until morning comes.

Tonight,

I

am

YOUNG.

 

 

–Aris Rielle Angle

The Ones Living Through Me

At this time in my life I feel the weight of everyone’s expectations. She hopes I will pursue that passion of mine because she chose to give that up for herself and now she doesn’t want to see me make the same choice. She looks at me as a younger version of herself, I don’t want to let her down. He looks at me and sees a Revolutionist. He points out my loyalty to my morals and beliefs and urges me to be the advocate of man. I am not qualified to be that person but I want to try so that he isn’t disappointed in me. That woman over there, she was an educator of mine. She wants me to enter her field. She tells me that I am talented and that I should pursue the sciences, she gets so proud when I perform well. I do not want her to think I am settling. Behind that curtain and through the hall stands a man who believes in me. He talks about me to others and I am highly honored by that but at the same time that makes me nervous. He holds me to a high standard. What if I fail his test and I go from having his approval to being a crumpled piece of paper in the trash can of his memories? What if my choice leaves a bitter end to my name? Look down, that young boy looks at me like I’m a superstar. He is so young, he believes I can do anything. Oh how I want to believe his childhood innocence. She thinks I am on the verge of making my dreams come true. She doesn’t know this but every time she talks to me about my daydream believer’s goal I collapse a little more inside. What if I never make it there? Will I become a wasted talent in the things I enjoy? Not that I hold myself to the highest standard. Hell, I know my shortcomings more than anyone else, but what if I become another face in the crowd when I was born to shine on a platform? He wants me to write, and write and write. I think he wanted to be a writer but he gave up on it. I want him to see success, if it is through me then so be it. I’m carrying her ideas of who I am, I dragging his dreams for me and somehow I find myself stumbling from the weight of it all. I have to carry every possible version of my future to the finish line and make them all proud. I can’t stand to sell myself short.

I’m standing at the genesis of a road that branches into one hundred paths, now I must discover how I can walk them all.

Splash

Coming out of nothing it finds me. A splash. It surprises me.

Joy, pure joy is like a splash.

I sit and read your book, splash. I’m drenched.

My friends and I jump into the unknown with crossed fingers and somehow we land in a puddle. Joy must have accumulated here.

I’d say joy is like rain but I like to think that joy does not come in small drops. Although you could argue that joy is a constant thing that we simply choose to ignore at times like an ignored rain storm but I believe that joy comes in large, unannounced amounts all of the time.

As I admire the world I am joyful. We have so much to live for, why we forget that I’ll never understand. I find joy in the way those people carry on and I find joy in the picture that love paints. Most of all I find joy in the simple act of breathing. You could argue this but I do not think you would be in a chipper mood if you did not have oxygen, friend.

Next time you feel gloomy find where the splash is. Seek it out, it is there. When life gives you lemons, do not water them down. Instead eat them, that sour taste may spur you to get up and receive your joy! You are worth more than you know and that joy is ready to surprise you.

(so)rry

A sat on my star last night.

You know the one.  If you have forgotten, go outside by the rainbow well. Look up and count 9 stars to the left of the moon. If you are able to do that, maybe you should.

I sat on my star and thought about you. I can’t explain why but I think I might be sad. After all you moved, you packed up all of your clouds and left. Somehow you forgot to grab your rays of sunlight on your way out. I sleep with them every night so I never forget how you smell. I hope you don’t mind.

It started to rain while I was thinking. You always liked the rain. I remember how you used to run outside in the middle of a sentence because you were always worried that the rain would stop before you got to run through it. I filled my eyes with the drops that fell. To do this I had to drop down from my star for a little bit but I didn’t mind. Later I would lose these drops I saved for you. I began to think of you and they fell right out of my eyes. I’m sorry. I will replace then, I promise.

I looked into space and let my mind wander. A gust of wind nearly knocked me off of my star. I looked down in anger hoping to curse the weather that startled me so but I noticed it was a jet. How foolish would I look cursing a jet?  It sounds like something you would do. I was always too reserved when I got angry. You taught me how to get mad in a healthy way. Now I no longer own my notebook dedicated to, “Things that make me want to start a riot,” because now I handle things differently.

The moon was particularly sassy last night. I asked him if he wanted to sing a song with me and he ignored me. Isn’t there a song that has to do with the moon and not paying attention to your son? I thought so. I started to sing that song to him. He got so mad he started to fade away. I think I taught him a lesson.

I figured that I had spent too much time on my star so I tried to get down. My dress got caught on that stubborn point, you know the one that is just a little longer than the others. I laughed with the point as I removed my dress from it. I made my dress apologize.

I opened my sock drawer and noticed that you had left your bottle of tornadoes tucked in the back of the cedar moving box. I opened it, the tornado was getting claustrophobic. He thanked me and returned to the bottle after he had done his fair share of damage to my perfume bottles. Well now they are puddles and broken glass.

One last thing, I walked down the poppy path behind that old cabin we used to visit for picnics. I picked a flower and took it to you. Your gravestone is sad-looking. Reading your name through blurry eyes I sing a hymn. How we miss you. And I’ll have you know, I’m wearing that pink dress you liked so much. I remember you told me that I looked like the April Wind. That’s when I knew you liked me, after all the April Wind was your favorite thing, barely beating out the rain. I must return now, the heavens will only leave the sky open for so long. It is moments like this in which I wish I had told you about this hope my mother taught me. Had I given into my heart, I would have shared that hope with you and you would be with me. I’ll be taking a flower back with me as well. I will never forget you, and I will never forget what I forgot to do.

London Skies

In this city I am invincible.

My neck might have a painful time because I look up so often but I hardly notice. The bitter wind burns my face but my smile is unaffected by my dropping body temperature.

Sounds, sounds, sounds.

The city never sleeps, and I realize this as I try to. I turn in my bed and look out the window, I’m here. My, this city has been calling to me for years now and I have finally answered. The city itself is intoxicating, I find myself swaying every way it tells me to. Overwhelming  joy is my addiction. Shuffling through the masses I am alone. But in my heart, I am surrounded by fellow neighbors, I belong here. The tube station is full and the platform is humming as my train to Paddington arrives. After a long day here I want to shower and sleep but the city beckons me to stay awake and keep it company, so I walk slower and look longer.

Soon enough I am at my hotel, I miss the streets already. As the water flows over my head I remember my day.

I stood in palace after palace. I marveled at some of the most glorious works of art. I literally walked in the footsteps of royalty. Hours were spent walking around Westminster Abbey. Here lies a Mover, here lies a Changer. How intriguing it was. The dome of St. Paul’s Cathedral took my words away from me. Soon enough I heard them being thrown into the Whispering Gallery. Oh the golden trims. Statues of him and her. Victor and King, their stone faces look past me and reminisce the accomplishments that made them worthy of their chiseled  immortality.

Music filled my heart and head as I walked along the places I have dreamed of. Over and over again I found myself singing in the rain…in the rain the pavement shines like silver, all the lights are misty in the river. 

Gardens full of plant life infused me with their energy. The snow fell and the rain appeared but the sun came back every time…here comes the sun….

I looked from above and enjoyed the majestic view that the people who fill my history books enjoyed. I stretched out my arms to my sides and tried to embrace the fullness of this city. How I wish I would’ve lived in their time.

My eyes begin to burn as the soap makes its way down my face. Wow, I must have really gotten lost in my mind’s journal of London.

It was in this place that my favorite author wrote. This is where he and his friends met to go over their works. Somehow I have found myself here, in the same place I have only dreamed of.

This is where my heart is alive and free.

It is as though my heart ran away from me and chose a home across the sea.

You Never Asked, But Here Is The Script To “Us”

Forgive me if the following is a bit disheveled. I just want you to know how I feel.

You inspired some of my greatest work, there is no doubt that you were my muse. It was you who breathed the melody I tried to write words to in hopes of a perfect song. I have noticed though, that you are not worth my words. You never were. It is sad, I see now that those words were wasted. They were wasted on a little boy who could not see two feet in front of himself. As I noticed this, I began to hang the blame on myself. This started by looking in the mirror and forgetting who I was. I questioned my traits, characteristics and looks. This is a side effect that no one should cause. From this I can see that you were a total waste. You became my first lost cause today. You played with my heart and the worst part is, I don’t think you even cared. You sat in your grey world and this burst of sunlight went unseen. Your eyes were fixed and your head unturned. What a waste, these lovely words were spent to buy empty love. How could you see the rain and yet still turn to the fire? Being caught up in you was like running on a cliff. I enjoyed the view and thought that maybe you could be my partner, but then the edge came and you were the one pushing me. You are an unfilled canteen, nothing but a thirst that will go unquenched. I lied to myself for too long because I chose to see the good in you, the good that wasn’t there. As I write this I shed a tear and I remember those daydreams. I remember thinking that you were going to be mine and that someday I would tell you everything.
Now you whistle and I do not hum along. How far we have come. Please just look the other way and let me sit here. Perhaps this silence will be good for me and maybe it will open your eyes. But I have to let go and I have to embrace silence. My heart is too fragile for this and my lips are tired of saying your name.

Blissful Confusion

You. I have a hard time writing about you. I haven’t noticed your walk and I haven’t categorized your laugh. Maybe this is because I haven’t had enough time, but maybe it is because you and I aren’t the same and he and I were.
I had time to take him in. I daydreamed for longer than I care to admit and that made every part of him a chapter to this movie I had been watching all along. I listened to him for a long time and he heard me in return. We joked and laughed and remained the same. You and I haven’t landed on that stone in the path yet.
Am I being guarded, my dear? If so I apologize. You see, you haven’t given me much to go off of. You say one thing and do not finish the other. You make me smile but after a while I rub my head out of confusion. Do you, or don’t you? Do I, or don’t I?
I try to keep him out of this but I can’t help but compare my heart’s notes. He and I made sense, but we never came to be. You and I make sense but will we ever come to be?
He looked at me, but he looked past me. After all, he had to. Will you though?
I can’t seem to make these ends meet. I’ve been sitting in this tree for so long, I don’t want to come down and face my problems at eye level. From this high up everything is right. I love the times when we are in a good place, but my confusion is overtaking them.
He confused me too.
Does that mean history is repeating itself?
Please,
no.