From the Horse's Mouth

it washes away

Posted in Mind Goo by theskinhorse on April 30, 2009

Sometimes when I see them in dreams, it is a mental bath. So much emotional build-up is released and flushed.

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Medium

Posted in stream of consciousness by theskinhorse on April 28, 2009

I see the rays of sun hit the earth like liquid gold waves. I live in an impressionist painting. From far away, the colors dance and flow in and out of one another; they copulate within pupils, using cones and rods in foreplay before merging in the mind. Close up, the violence of the knife assaults with color and the delicacy of the brush nutures whimsical forms.

Beings that I recognize shift through the soft lines and contrivance of light and shadow. I shift as well. Every movement casts a different color; no one frame is the same. Sometimes the world looks that way… still frames conveying motion through speed of sequential appearance. The coherency of the story depends upon the order of the frames. At times I like to reach out my hand to touch the picture, grab the corner and then shuffle. The human mind will seek out patterns regardless of the shuffle.

I could make a story out of the simple observations of the play of Light. (Perhaps one day I will. ) Photographers capture. They have choices: present as is, present as seen, present as conceptualized, or just present. They allow the subjects and objects to reveal their own stories. Whether they hold your hand through the positions, abstractions, concretions, lines and effects, you, as the viewer, make the final call of the scene.

Storytellers put a blindfold on you and say “Come with me.” Many have enjoyed the element of escape inherent in stories. Although, just as many savor the element of truth or confrontation they deliver.

Mediums are utilized to send messages and illustrate ideas.

I mix mediums. The experience… Life is a medium… as anything can be.

.  ~  .  ~  .  ~  .  ~  .  ~  .  ~  .  ~  .

me·di·um, defined

n. pl. me·di·a (-d) or me·di·ums

2. An intervening substance through which something else is transmitted or carried on.
3. An agency by which something is accomplished, conveyed, or transferred
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A storm, a prison, a relief

Posted in Dreams, Visions by theskinhorse on April 25, 2009

The apartment is breathing more, or at least trying.

I was back in my old neighborhood. The house across the street from my parents’ house was where I was staying or looking after. While wandering outside in my pajamas on a muggy evening, enjoying the change to twilight, I began to feel strange. The edges of the sky and the horizon turned black. I am in the eye of the storm, I thought immediately. I noticed others realized it too as they started to panic. My first thought was to get to the safest place possible. I knew it was probably a basement. In my mind, I saw the image of me heading to the basement, but my body didn’t move; a second thought came along: If I am about to die, I want my last moments to be with my family. I headed across the street. My family had lawn chairs set up in the garage and were watching the storm. They greeted me warmly, and I took a seat next to one of my brothers. They seemed awfully jovial considering the circumstances. They made jokes and drank cola and beer. Being in their presence lightened my mood as well. The storm no longer carried impending doom, instead, it promised certainty and maybe a kind of liberation.

We watched people scream and run through the streets; we watched cars zoom by, intent on out-running the storm. Houses were boarded up. The winds knocked over mailboxes and assaulted trees. Structures collapsed; skies turned; the world changed. We sat and laughed and talked. We watched the world fall to pieces, and I was eternallygrateful that the last sounds I heard, before the winds obscured all else, was the unrestricted, bittersweet and honest laughter of my family.

*  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *

My brother is in prison; we have to get him out.

I am not sure who “we” are; the names and faces are blurs. Nothing makes sense to me in this world. All I know is that my brother was taken from his home abruptly and thrown into an ancient dungeon with inhumane wardens.

The elusive “they” make a plan. The body count within the dungeon must stay the same. The wardens check numbers, not faces. They forget who the prisoners are, but not their assigned values. They tell me that I have to take his place for a while, until they can wage war on the state and liberate all the prisoners. They tell me it won’t be long. Only a couple of days, I just need to hold out only a couple of days. They tell me that they are more likely to pity a woman. If my brother is in solitary confinement, I just may be lucky enough to go completely unnoticed, completely forgotten.

I say I’ll switch with him to save him from torture.

We locate his cell. There is a high, barred window that we manage to reach and bend or break. We pull him up a rope, and he squeezes through the small space. Lucky for him that he is skinny. I crawl in to take his place. He looks more terrified at the turn of events than relieved. I suspect he would have traded himself for me, but this is what is happening now.

They say they will come back for me as they clasp hands over my brother’s mouth and drag him away. I don’t believe them, but I believe him. I see his eyes full of confusion as he is dragged off and I wonder: Is he imprisoned no matter where he is?

Night turns to day quickly. I notice the details of my cell. All walls in this place are tan; they look to be made of clay and dirt. It smells dusty and dry. The inside of my nose is rough, caked with dust. The sun filtering in through the window fills the cell with gold. The light is bright, harsh but somehow comforting. The shadows remind me of unearthed soil. The air shifts from dry to blood-thick.

The locks on my door are no better than locks on old bathroom stalls. I don’t seem to wonder why they are on the inside. My hands do not touch the lock, but it moves free and the thin wooden door creaks open. Three or four large men are about 20 feet away. They see me; I see them. I quickly close the door and fear men like I was trained to do. Are they going to rape me, beat me, kill me? They are too big for me to fight… The panic lasts for what seems like hours, likely it was only a few minutes. No one comes to the door; no one disturbs or threatens me. I stop fearing; I am ready to escape on my own.

I don’t remember how, but I end up outside. A warden argues with me, trying to pull me back inside. I tell him I am free citizen, and I show him my ID. My name is something that starts with an S. My last name is Woodrow, same as my brother’s, and I think that maybe showing him the ID was the wrong move. He seems unsure so I make threats that I cannot, in any way, back up. “My family has political power. If they find out that YOU threw me prison, you AND your family will live out the rest of your lives in that hell hole.” He lets me go. As I flee, I see a twinkle of recognition in his eye. It is misplaced, though. He is probably wondering to himself why I am switching certain circuits in his brain, why I may seem so familiar. What is it that he is missing that is of the utmost importance right now? I clear the hills, and I am gone from his sight.

I wake up back in the prison. I remember escaping the first time so I know that it happened. I do not question my reality or memory, rather I question the lost time and the way I somehow returned to this place. My first instinct is to escape again. Maybe I try or maybe it is a scene enacted in my head, but they don’t let me off the hook this time. I don’t have my ID. And if I really AM “Woodrow,” then I may be an asset.

I do not fear this place. I leave my cell to walk among the other prisoners. No one really seems to have their own cell unless they choose it. There are some that mill around in empty rooms or halls, others that confine themselves. Some live with 2 or 3 others behind bars, others claim whole rooms as their territory. Some rooms are relatively clean, others reek of human waste and have blood smeared on the walls. Almost all the rooms are empty, no beds, no chairs, no toilet. I walk up and down stairwells that I previously didn’t know existed. The lower levels have far less light and prisoners that were less articulate, more aggressive, more deranged or hopeless.

As I progress downward I notice that the bones and corpses on the floor increase in number and volume. I am not sure how far down these staircases leads. On this level, the corpses are stacked so we are all ankle-deep. Three men stand in a room, breathing heavily, obviously in pain. They are all covered in blood. They have broken appendenges and mutilated faces. They growl and heave insults at each other dispite the fact that they can hardly move. I watch them heal in a very short span of time. They wail as their bones reset and wounds begin to close. The body doesn’t heal completely, just enough to allow them to fight each other more. And they do. As soon as they can move, they attack. They beat each other to pulps and tear at each other’s flesh over and over again. They don’t leave the room.

I walk down one more flight of stairs. It is colder and darker. The air is heavier; it restricts around my lungs so I am wheezing as I reach the landing. As soon as I reach the landing, the climate changes to unbearably humid. I do not step into the room for I fear I may drown in the corpses. The dimensions of the room are hard to judge. The floor looks like it may be 10 feet below the landing. The corpses fill it so they reach what looks to be floor level from where I stand. There are rafters above, but no ceiling. In each corner there are barred off areas to fit one person in standing position. I hear cries from the corner next to me. There are at least four faces I can make out. They look like children, and they are standing on top of one another. There is enough room for them to claw their way to the top, but only enough room for one to stand at the top. The bars run all the way to floor. All the children at the bottom can see are the feet of the others standing above them and the corpses piled in front of them.

From the rafters, there swings a emaciated, blood-stained body of an older man. He is suspended by hooks in Christ-like pose. He seems to have passed out, but I doubt that he is ever relieved from his perpetual suffering.

Turning around, I walk back up through the prison. I no longer know which level I originally came from. I continue walking, and it is getting lighter. The air is getting thinner and cleaner.

I choose a level to visit. Walking in, the atmosphere reminds me of a dorm or academic building on college campuses. The architecture is sturdy and aesthetically pleasing. The people on this level are smiling. They have furniture and food; they have windows and pool tables. Small domesticated animals run throughout the halls.

I am directed to a shower and given new clothes. Dressed in velour shorts and a thin cotton tank, I make my way to a large room with windows for walls. I walk through the first portion of the room where 20-somethings are playing games and watching a documentary. As I walk into the window-room, I see plush neon chairs and a sparkling water fountain. I take a seat on a fuzzy fuchsia chair and wiggle my toes over the fabric.

A familiar face greets me. It is a friend from undergrad. I haven’t seen him in years. He looks younger and his hair is lighter. He is beaming as he hold his arms out to hug me. We laugh and trade stories. Some time goes by and I see my partner walk in the room. He looks relieved, amused and slightly confused. I take his hand and lead him to the fluffy chairs. A few of the crowd starts singing acapella. Their voices rise into the clouds interspersed on a canvas of radiant blue as time drifts by sweetly.

~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~

Posted in 1 by theskinhorse on April 22, 2009

I am fascinated by texture.

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caw

Posted in Mind Goo by theskinhorse on April 21, 2009

You are not the messages you deliver;

the messages you deliver are not you.

Except sometimes

when the you becomes so attached to those messages

you forget you.

coffee and my brother’s shirt

Posted in stream of consciousness by theskinhorse on April 20, 2009

It’s raining again.

I am wearing my brother’s shirt; it wears like a blanket.

Rainy days are good days for coffee.

I leave it unbuttoned, but pull it criss-cross closed in front of my chest.

Coffee is the incentive for getting out of the house on a day like today. (Still yet I sit.)

I wore my brother’s shirt a lot when my tattoo was healing; it is the most comfortable shirt I have. It reminds me of him.

My nose awaits the aroma of the brew.

The pattering of the rain lulls me into alpha state.

This shirt would be wonderful to sleep in.

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Beach Sanctuary

Posted in stream of consciousness by theskinhorse on April 19, 2009

There are innate preferences. These should not be regarded by anyone’s influences as wrong.

Actually, let me start with this: The Myers-Briggs type indicator. The temptation to kill time utilizing an accessible and fast-paced entity paired with the inherent curiousity and/or self-absorption of the social human animal has increased the popularity of placing ourselves in square on a grid with assigned traits to compare to our friends and neighbors. The types are defined by the way in which the individual perceives, processes and interacts with the world. Once we know in which square we and our friends reside, we can say

“it makes so much more sense now…”

or “I always knew we were too diiferent (or too much the same)…”

or “we really DO understand each other’s perspective (or never will)…”

At times the inner dialogue can progress to something akin to “my way is better, and I will tell them why.” or “why doesn’t everyone think/act like me?” or “I will attempt to modify those around me to fit better within my square, so we can be there together.”

Boxes of defined perception and operation feel comfortable, like homes; we want our loved ones to be there with us. We all do not “work” the same.

Sometimes… We are built with the same materials, but we are built different ways.

Sometimes… We are built the same way but with different materials.

Remember those light psychological tests that give insight into our psyches? “You are walking through a forest…” types. Someone guides you to a scene of which you paint. The picture before you is a projection of your mind, your internal world, your hopes and dreams and fears, your expectations and your personal truths.

We went to the beach the other day. Sitting so close to Mother Ocean, hearing her lullabies roll onto the shore and call me Home again, I can’t help but be silent with reverence and turn all my eyes in, up-and-out. With my toes wiggling in warm, soft sand, I found myself wishing the beach was largely empty save for myself, my partner and a few more reverent souls. “How many people are on your beach?” Another probe into the psych which really asks “How solitary are you?”

For me? The beach, whether in my dreams, my hopes, or my mind’s eye, it is always practically empty. I am alone or in the company of one or two of my intimates. The people that are few and far between are quiet and serene. We acknowledge each other when we are within ear- or eye-shot; we nod or give spirit-bows as we pass by, usually in silence. We are monks of the shore; each footprint in the sand is a prayer and each breath or blissful sigh is an offering. That is my beach, one where Mother Ocean is free to be herself and she is loved, honored and meditated upon.

I suppose this means that I am a solitary kitty. Such has always been the way.

I sat among the people, at least half a dozen camps less than ten feet away, and I wished for space to unravel. I thought about my head-beach. With time, the population thinned greatly, and I was afforded my sanctuary by the ocean.

I awoke this morning with thoughts regarding peace and stimulation. It has loose associations with the Myers-Briggs personality boxes. Those “introverts” are often those seeking peace. They would trade stimulation for peace… as I often would. This is mirrored in many ways. In situations I am more apt to act according to what will deliver me the most peace as opposed to what will give me the most activity. Some individuals have distinct problems with this behavior when it so obviously manifests in me. It is not the same as flat-out avoidance or laziness; in fact, many times the path to peace is an active one. The activity may not be as explicit or clear to others.

Often, introverts need less stimulation than extroverts, even biologically. There are numerous hypotheses regarding behaviors and dispositions being driven by an individual’s capacity to respond (the degree of stimulation which is necessary to produce certain neurological effects).  It is postulated that generally, introverts have a lower threshold for stmulation. (Pick your wording here) Meaning they are more responsive, it takes less stimulation for them to respond, they will become overwhelmed before extroverts.

Some behavior is innate. We are different. We shouldn’t be judged for our differences in perceiving and interacting with the world… but, rest assured, we will be.

I will trade stimulation for peace most days. If I can define who I am, that is part of it. Additionally, I won’t be made to feel like I should apologize for it.

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four star day dream

Posted in 1 by theskinhorse on April 15, 2009

I feel the pressures of this abstract force to which we attached value some time in the past with the idea of making our lives easier. Once upon a time, it was something, revered for its rarity, shininess and beauty. We pushed it. We faked it. We determined that representation of worth was more appropriate. Now we are left with abstract numbers and identities infused in synthetic polymers. Our activity is tracked as the math feels like anvils dragging the body to a premature death. I feel my face drop, my hopes knot (…naught), my optimism dissolve into the empty spaces of necessary resources. (for unnecessary lifestyles?) Logs don’t give the benefit of the doubt.

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by candlelight

Posted in Mind Goo by theskinhorse on April 13, 2009

We write poetry to bleed truths.

It’s easy to cycle-in

Is an out-cycle truly a change?

The book is not the same as it once was.

Neither is my handwriting.

Now we are ErRAtic.

Now we simply let go.

Because… ? … that is what we are so often taught to do… ?

Window scrapings in the dark:

Still on the outside looking in.

“Shall we?”

Dancers I don’t know.

My muscles are held so tensely;

it hurts.

(pain drives people toward expression.)

Soft rolls under the tension the surface holds.

She sees better than I do in the dark.  She catches small offenders that would otherwise go unnoticed.

We track progress:

like an animal for some,

like a formula for others.

A Sleeper Hold

Posted in Mind Goo by theskinhorse on April 9, 2009

I feel the focus on results; it detracts from actually living. Do… do… continue DO-ing.

(responses are sometimes merely the first thing that comes to mind in a situation- as much fabrication as they are explanation.)

Sometimes I get sick of eating.

Sometimes we act as chemical bags of need adept at hubris.

Self-interest is one of the greastest motivations for writing.

It’s coming back to me… why I spat nonsensical, colorful non-words and deconstruction. So many times words can mean nothing. We re-evaluate their status and effect as it suits us. It makes me not want to speak.

We trained ourselves to have terminal attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder.

The aether ate my face.

“Perfection” can be viewed as complete cohesion. It is not for everyone; there must be different Ways. It takes diversity to form a sustainable ecosystem.

We are born with forgetfulness. At every “clean slate” we are a stranger; we are estranged.

We must learn. Third parties want to know who you studied under.

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