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This Side of Eternity

After jumping through an asylum window in the middle of the night,
half naked like the Chief in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest,
I stop in Nebraska to see my brother,
seeking wisdom and familiarity.
My brother Michael is a paragon and a prince.
He puts up with my nonsense for two and a half weeks -
the self-condemnation and the psychotic breaks with reality.
He urges me to embrace the fear of being born
and warns of the dangers of looking back
once a hand is put to the plow.
I still owe him a copy of Interior Castle,
which I borrowed and never returned.
I was not only a law-breaker and a cheat,
but a thief too.
I step out of the apartment building into a white January night,
bewildered by the differences between the temporal and the eternal,
with a longing that burns like a first love,
a childhood summer, or the Final Letting Go.
I cross the street and enter Sam & Louie's pizzeria,
order a slice with pineapple and a pitcher of Lone Star.
A homeless looking man sitting at a Ms. Pac Man table beckons me over.
"Have a seat son," he says.
I sit and search his guileless eyes.
"How do we do it?" I ask, filling the glass and sliding it toward him.
"Do what?"
"How do we avoid the sorrow?"
"We don't."
"Sometimes it's too much to bear," I say, sliding the pizza toward him.
"Let it refine you," he says.
We sit staring out of a window into the night.
"Where does it come from? All the sadness and pain?" I ask.
"Love, caught this side of eternity," he says.

10 Jan 14

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lines 9 & 10 - omgasdkgnscnb. fuckin' hit home, brother

and the end. fuck. good write. thank you for posting this. seriously hits home hard.

*2nd read

this is so simple and beautiful and heart wrenching. fuck man. what a way to cap off my thursday night.

10 10 10
 — dvdsxr

Only 9 touches truth this way.  Bravo.
 — Isabelle5

It's just eloquent speech as all.
 — unknown

heyyyyy 9. is the picture in your profile you?
 — dvdsxr

Thank you Isabelle for visiting me.
dvdsxr - It's a photo of me when I was older.
 — 9

Not only do you write well, but you are well read. I like that :)

Everything with you is detail, the trivial and the mundane shine as brightly as the metaphysics and philosophy, those fine details create the world for us observers, and the human being you are, what you know and have been through and pose as those eternal musings of 'why' and 'how' touches all of us, because they are the very same questions we have asked .. that have tormented us too.

The answer any 'wise' person would give is a variation on Line 35. It is truth, and truth is as rare as it is obvious.

Knowing the greater spiritual nature of 'who and why we are' is rendered into sound by the perfect chord of the last 3 lines.

A good read :)
 — jenn

Thank you very much jenn.
 — 9

L35 :)
 — mandolyn

if i wanted to read a short story i'd go to a short story site.
 — unknown

the message in this rings louder than the form. i like the story form. but then i like to read, and 9 never tires us of that.
 — mandolyn

if our opinions were worth anything we'd probably be able to cobble together about $0.14c
 — unknown

Put another question mark after "pain" in L37 where you're still asking the same question and in L38, not sure why there's a comma after "love."  Very, very touching and real.  I like it like DATT!  :-)
 — starr

This was sooooo, sooooooo goood the first time i read it. It's way better the second time around.
 — majan

Thanks starr for the help. :) <3 to you.

majan, I'm happy you liked it. Thank you :)
 — 9

<3 9!  And stop pushin' on the tomato plants, you'll kill 'em!  Never mind.  They're already dead.  ;-)
 — starr