Adolescence, Adolescent Sexuality, Attachment, Authenticity, Being True To Yourself, Coffee Shop Folks, Coffee Shop Stories, Family, Fatherless Children, Fatherless Daughters, Fatherless Girls, Friends, Human Nature, Jackie, Jerks, Judgementalism, Life, Living, Love, Lovers, Mental and Emotional Health, Obsession, People, Quality of Life, Relationships, Sarah, Self, Self Identity, Self Image, Self-determination, Self-Knowledge, Sex, Sexuality, Society

All the Young Women

SUMMARY: I take a look at the women I met some years ago in Colorado Springs, and then draw a few conclusions about the challenges they faced at that time in their lives.

(About a 8 minute read)

People are often more predictable than life itself.  I can often predict, with surprising accuracy, what a long-term friend will do in almost any situation, but my life has taught me that it can be considerably more difficult to predict where I will be in a year or two.

I certainly did not expect when I came to Colorado that I would soon know — at least casually — about 200 young men and women twenty years younger than me, nor that about two dozen of them would befriend me.

Yet that’s what happened — largely as a direct consequence of my choosing to frequent a coffee shop that both served the cheapest cup in town and was the hang out of hundreds of local high school students.  Since it was also the oldest and most established coffee shop in town, it was also the hang out of everyone else — from the mayor and some city council members to several homeless people.

Continue reading “All the Young Women”

Danielle, Love, Miscellaneous, People, Poetry, Sex, Sexuality

She Wore a Top Hat and Little Else

(About a 3 minute read)

“Whip it out”, she said.
“No, your wallet”, she said.
“This is a coffee shop, Paul,
Not a brothel.”

“Of course I knew what you meant.
I’m not dumb, Danielle.” I said,
Trying to cover up my mistake. “I was um…
Performing a little street theater, you see.”

“Emphasis on ‘little’, Paul.”

I decided it was time to change the subject.
“What’s your favorite funeral home joke’,
I hastily asked, batting my lashes fetchingly.

“Thinking of retiring, Paul? That’s something
The whole shop could get behind,
An old man like you.”

“Ok, I owe you one. It was an innocent mistake
Anyone could make, but I owe you one.”

“You can take me to a strip club Thursday at six.”

“But…”

“You can take me to a strip club Thursday at six.”

“But…”

“Or I tell everyone.”

Thursday at six rolled around like an appointment
With a bloodthirsty Mafia boss
That I wasn’t hankering to meet.

Danielle showed up dressed causally
But conservatively, in sheer lace lingerie,
A top hat, with a cane:
Conservatively for the clubs, that is.

“I want to blend in”, she explained.

“Good thinking”, I said, “No one will notice you.
Me, I’ll just be drinking heavily,
Pretending I don’t see you either.”

She got in free, no cover charge.
I had to pay 15 standard fee,
Plus $200 deposit because the overly-muscled
Idiot guarding the door remembered me
From the night I got drunk and some dancer’s
G-string inexplicably got stuck in my teeth.

The first act was pathetic, a newbie
Who pandered to the crowd by pretending
To juggle carrots in the nude
While walking around the stage
Chanting “Cha-cha Cha-cha”.

The second act wasn’t much better.
A slender blonde laid on her side,
Repeatedly raising and dropping her leg
While looking a mix between angry
And infinitely bored.

“This is what it’s all about?
This is what turns you men on?
You want I should juggle carrots for you?”

“Hardly”, I said, “Maybe it’ll get better.”
But I didn’t believe it would.
Time to take myself up on my offer
To start drinking heavily.

But then some natural born artist
Took the stage and danced her sexuality.
The two who followed were the same.

On the drive back, I asked
What she thought of it all.

“Liberating!”

When we got to my place
She abruptly unzipped me
With not so much as a “by your leave”,
But with a dexterous wack of her cane.

“That could have gone very wrong.”

“Yes”, She agreed. “But there’s not much
Down there it could have hit.”

Our eyes danced for each other,
Found what they were looking for,
Then rested briefly eye to eye.
Suddenly
We plunged for the bed simultaneously
Laughing like kids on Christmas morning.
The bed bounced us into each other’s arms.

“Could you take the g-string out of your teeth.”

“It cost me two hundred.” I said.
“And there’s still plenty of chew in it yet.
I’m not ready to lose it just yet.”

Belief, Ethics, Goals, Harriet, Human Nature, Late Night Thoughts, Life, Love, Lovers, Morality, Morals, Mysticism, New Love, People, Purpose, Romantic Love, Self, Self-determination, Spirituality, Truth

Late Night Thoughts: Harriet in Love, Good and Bad/Evil, Spiritual Goals, and More (August 24, 2018)

(About a 3 minute read)

I once had an extraordinary young friend, Harriet, whom I have written about here. She was clearly a genius, as well as a rather decent enough person in general, but when she was in her late teens or early twenties, she harbored a rather peculiar notion about love.

Harriet saw but one love — or kind of love — between sex partners as true.  That is, she believed giggly romantic love was the only true love for such couples.

Continue reading “Late Night Thoughts: Harriet in Love, Good and Bad/Evil, Spiritual Goals, and More (August 24, 2018)”

Alienation, Alienation From Self, Bad Ideas, Free Spirit, Human Nature, Jackie, Josh, Law, Life, Love, Lovers, Morality, Obligations to Society, Oppression, People, Sex, Sexuality, Society, Spirituality, Values, Wisdom

“He Kept the Law and Saved the World for You, Praise be!”

(About a 3 minute read)

Josh was lean as a wolf that fall
And strong as a hawk’s wings.
That October when the comet
Hung over the San Luis in the night.

And the coyotes called out in the night.
The coyotes yearned in the night.

Jackie heard the coyotes call
And wanted Josh but didn’t know
At seventeen how to overcome
Her ancient fears (born before the first gods)
For the sake of her ancient desires.

(Fire and ice
Ice on fire
Which will win?)

Jackie, then Josh, asked your advice
Back when you didn’t like
Giving advice.
Too much responsibility,
Too little wisdom to know
Which way to turn a young life.

Someone else that summer
Offered herself to you.
She was as young as Jackie.
As beautiful as Josh.

You pretended not to notice.
And she pretended not to care.
You stayed friends that way.

Josh was lean, but you listened to her.
Josh was strong, but you felt her.
And (let’s get honest here)
She sensed you knew how to love a woman
So that she cared to be loved,
Cared to share her bed with you.
That’s why she turned to you.
But you didn’t see it then.

(How long we must live
Before we see anything!
We’re always half in our graves,
At least half in our graves
Before we know life at all.)

(And why didn’t you see it?
It’s not like you at forty
Were one of those boys,
Those boys, those “pick-up artists”,
Who know more about how to get fucked,
Than they know how to fuck.
You cared for her. She cared for you.)

Today you would have accepted her.
Your fire has rekindled now,
Now it burns green again.
You’re wiser now, less a fool,
And the blood of outlaws
Burns in your veins.

Love moves according
To its own laws.
According to laws
Born when the universe
Was new.

You can try
To put chains on it,
And cage it, tame it,
Make it acceptable
As a garden plant.

(That’s what they do, you know.
Across the world they do it:
They play the alchemist:
With strange heats and poisons
They turn gold into lead,
But call it lead into gold.
Those guardians of morality.
Those liars.)

But love is a weed
And will always grow wild.

A weed with thorns
It will have its revenge
If you try to pluck it.

Deny it and deny life.
Die years before you’re dead.

The busybodies will praise
You for how you sacrificed
To keep their civilization
From crumbling to the sea.

(Yeah they will. They really will.)

I hear their eulogies already.
Their ironic eulogies for you
That they’ll roar from their pulpit
(“Roar” by putting a moral spin on things.)
So even the dead may hear
How Jackie and Josh were lawful
And so were you.
And so were you.

Somewhere the coyotes call.
The savage coyotes call out
In the night to something
Inside you that’s no longer
Yours and is gone anyway.

But you did save civilization.

For you and the girl didn’t fuck.

Let this be your eulogy then:

“He denied love,
He kept the law,
Saved us all,
By not fucking,
By not confusing
Good with Evil.
Not mixing
Youth and age.”

Let that be carved in stone.
It’s enough to make a dead man proud,
And pride is more ethical than love.

Right?

Abuse, Alienation, Alienation From Self, Authenticity, Authoritarianism, Bad Ideas, Being True To Yourself, Capitalism, Class War, Consumerism, Cultural Traits, Culture, Free Spirit, Freedom, Freedom and Liberty, Fundamentalism, Human Nature, Ideologies, Jackie, Liars Lies and Lying, Life, People

And the Coyotes Yearned in the Night

(About a 4 minute read)

I have risen in the night
To see Mount Elbert on fire
With the white-blue light
Of the moon to turn it
Into a distant ghost.

It seemed in the peace
Of that night
Wisdom became visible, tangible,
And beautiful;
Passion for life became life itself,
And our audacious authenticity
Became the sole Truth,
More real than the true gods.

But I know that we are apes
Equidistant
From the wisdom of the bonobo
And the foolishness of chimps.

I have risen in the day
To see your self and spirit
Defeated and yoked
By the obscene demand
Of your being forced
To make a living
On the rich man’s terms.
Your authenticity is dead

Though you haven’t eyes to see the fact,
Your authenticity is dead.

You have bought the lie, my brother.
You have bought the lie, my sister.
That you cannot be yourself.

Now even your holy desire
To lie with each other’s bodies
Is sold back to you twisted,
Perverted by the merchants
Of fashion and entertainment.

By the merchants
Who are the new Shakespeares,
The new Goethes, the Rilkes,
The Einsteins, the Darwins,
The Sidharthas, the Lao-Tzus.
The sages have become prostitutes.

Even Jesus has been weaponized.
The fundamentalists
Have crucified him again,
Enslaved his ghost
To their corrupt and unholy ends.
So that now the one who came
That you might live
Has become your pallbearer,
The gravedigger who
Each day buries
Your authenticity afresh.

They tell you not to be true
To you yourself and to love,
“It’s a world-destroying sin —
Your moral duty is to go along.”

Everything good in this world
That your humanity can touch
Sooner or later is turned
By the people for whom power
Means more than truth itself.

Turned, and twisted, and perverted.
Raped, debased, and oppressed.
Sold back to you as organic,
As natural, as the truth at last revealed —
But by the painted maws of diseased whores
That you call your leaders
And your friendly billionaires.

And you, my friend, believe them —
That’s what I don’t understand.
It’s a mystery how you always believe
The old and ancient lies are never lies.

Once up among mountains
On an evening when a comet
Hung in the bejeweled sky,
And the coyotes called
(Yearning voices in the night),
I sat naked with Jackie,
My honest nude body touching
Her honest nude body
As we sat side by side.

She was seventeen that year.

Troubled with the challenges
Of any young life.
She asked for clarity and guidance
From a much older man.

I told her be herself.
In six ways and seven times,
I told her be herself.

And the coyotes yearned in the night.
The coyotes cried out to her that night.
A comet hung in the sky.

Brett, Coffee Shop Folks, Coffee Shop Stories, Community, Doug, Free Spirit, Harriet, Life

Nathan and the Americans

(About a 9 minute read)

“American’s are impossible to understand.”

Everyone of us at our table turned to look at him where he sat at a table next to ours.  He was a young man, in his twenties, with short, almost crew cut hair, a wide smile, and a white T-shirt, and jeans.

“Why do you say that?” I asked after a few moments during which we sized him up, and he sized us up in return.

Continue reading “Nathan and the Americans”

Abuse, Coffee Shop Folks, Emotional Abuse, People, Physical Abuse, Poetry, Psychological Abuse, Relationships, Suzanne, Verbal Abuse

Naked in the Falling Snow

(About a 1 minute read)

Do you remember, Suzanne,
The night we drove down to the hot springs
Through the falling snow,

The snow that swirled and blazed
Like sparks from a wildfire
In the headlights of your car?

I thought the beauty of that night
Would be our last
Because you started playing chicken
With the oncoming trucks —

Darting into their lane,
Hurling your car at them
As if each truck was Jeff.

You asked over and over,
Your voice at first pleading
Then demanding to know,

Why he’d again been cruel,
Why he’d again been hateful,
Why he’d again punched
“The woman he loved”.

But you never paused for an answer,
You never really wanted it said;
Your questions were desperate to drown it,
Block the answer, cut it off.

It was past ten when we made it to the springs.
You didn’t bother to cry that night or any other,
But you were weary-eyed at nineteen…
…with still satin skin.

And as you stripped down bare for the pool,
I thought you looked like a waif
Someone had left out
Naked in the falling snow.