Defining Character

Dear Abbey,
I smell of musky mountain solitaire, played behind campfire illuminations.
I’m writing myself into existence, from myself, of myself. It’s a narcissistic pursuit, I’ll admit.
But I have to know. And it’s here for the record.
Take these few dry logs; I stripped them down into kindling. Burn as needed.

Comfortable.
I’ve been thinking a lot about my definition of comfort.
I have little want or need outside of clean water, beans & grains, a bag of loose tea, ink & paper, dry storage.
The rest is… the rest. It sleeps. It remains dormant until specific situations arise.
Shovels for digging. Axes for splitting. Words for reading. Songs for singing. Love for loving. Smoke for smoking.
So that’s me. I want the same thing most people want: home. My own space. Not to be bothered.
That can be a tall order to fill, considering the seven billion other minds, strewn among seven billion other bodies.
And what about those others? I know we all need similar things, but do we all want similar things?

Space.
What does the universe need to be comfortable?
I think it needs plenty of room in order to spread itself out.
There is enough space for expansion and development out there, yet we contend for the most vital resources in here.
All the matter is strewn about the void, as if in a perpetual state of meticulously abstract impressionism.
Things are awfully dense down here.
The universal essence thrives and develops within process, constantly making itself, consistently in a state of becoming.
There is chaotic space between matter and void. It doesn’t spread itself out evenly. Pollock knows.
It stores and charges. Disrupts and dispels. Reforms and re-cognizes.
If there weren’t enough space for matter, collapse would likely result.

Chaos.
There is a bridge between entropy and chaos. The bridge of humanity, perhaps?
Entropy deals with the negative space of probability. It attempts to quantify the improbable.
Entropy gets involved when Mr. Probable probably shouldn’t be driving home with a belly full of beer, but he does anyway.
There is a mantra he doggedly recites as he whizzes through traffic stops, blindly passing fuel stops.
He’s done this “a million times”, with no bad endings to tell of.
Mr. Probable runs out of gas on a lone mountain back road. He is very surprised, but mostly drunk.
He believes it to be inconveniently cold outside, so he does not leave his vehicle. His phone is dead.
He just waits. Someone will probably find him. He wishes he brought a blanket.
Mr. Probable probably spent his last moments in cold contempt for chaos. He was found frozen to the wheel.
One should learn to predict chaos upon the odd occasion.

Grace.
See us here, dancing between frail fault lines and large bodies of water.
Tectonic plates shift along with rhythms of paradigm inside this fine china cabinet we call Earth.
Culture clashes against convention, marching along to the gong of forceful dissolution.
Hello sunny California. Within you, we find our fountain of drought.
Desert sand does not disappear in hot water. The minerals are better off left alone.
Instead, we aggregate and masticate. We build shrines dedicated to six days of work and six sides of a cube.
We pay our peace to phallic cement steeples with long elevator rides of boxes inside of boxes.
Hear the low vibrations; the rumbling drone bass lines that underscore this symphony of life.
The Monday morning traffic flow is musical, it’s all rhythm and coordination. It’s graceful in its cacophonous glow.
Somebody told me that we fell out of grace. I say, “what falls out can also fall in.”

Law.
My parents chose Christian names. I’m grateful for that.
It allows me to slip under the guise of normalcy, like a vagrant outlaw wearing a business suit.
I’ve never held much real interest in crime, choosing instead to revel among different ways of freedom.
The perpendicular nature of crime and freedom meet at the junction of law.
This intersection bears a propensity for collusion and disaster.
The universe has laws. As such, so does man.
I have never respected communications from men over the divine instructions of nature.
You can’t stop the wind in a hurricane, but you can certainly set sail and ride it out.
We all have somewhere to bury our treasure. Some store notes in banks. Others dig holes and draw maps.
Some hide their pearls between idiom and loose vernacular.

Direction.
Directionless direction leads me to where I want to be.
I seek a warm beach to bury my head in. The climate map says: tropics or bust.
The further my little money goes, the better. I prefer to barter and work-trade.
Economic maps advise me to stay away from the top-earning nations.
I run my fingers and legs atop ridges and valleys. My bare skin becomes saline from ocean tidal torrents.
The physical maps guide me along sea-level towards mountaintops and rivers.
I cherish all freedom, courting a desire remain hidden in plain sight.
The political map forecasts are uncertain.
I don’t carry a road map; I’d rather get lost.
My compass needle is worn and warped, so I’ll follow my gut until it speaks ill of me.

Origin.
I’m fairly certain Mom wasn’t raised under the Holy Bible.
Dad was, but I’m not sure that his beliefs are aligned with those of “the” Church.
While hitching, I’ll often get picked by a bible-thumper.
They tell me to read the book that corresponds with my Christian designation.
And depending on which name I’ve given them, it could be the baptists book or a piece of proverb.
The Bible is a subject of interpretation, of which is subject to interpretation.
Which means “use words you didn’t create to conceive of what you perceive to be your ideology.”
Which raises many questions and even more calamity.
Where does original originate? Are any ideas original?
Just as syntax and semantics solidify sentence structure, primary colors bore upon a foreground form aesthetics.
Red is red, but to which primary sense do these vibrations radiate?
Does is smell of blood, taste like apples, feel like anger, & sound like war?
We have been taught to perceive the perceivable.
But have we subscribed to a synthesis of senses?
Synesthesia is the blend between sensing and perceiving.
Thus, the questioned is left unanswered by a riddle: what makes sense?

Women.
My Dad always said, “if they’re not happy, you’re not happy” and “don’t ever try to understand them; you’ll go crazy.”
I later defied the first statement with depressive solitude. It became, “if I’m not happy, I’m not happy.”
I’m still working on the second part, attempting to paint a genius form around perceived insanity.
I heard that there’s a line between those two.
To insert “they” is to separate them from us. Which is illogical, seeing as we are both necessary to function.
Woman complements man as the counterpart. Or is it the other way?
Industry represents the masculine. Nature, the feminine.
The real issue holds its roots in dualism.
A dichotomous mind makes meaning through comparisons and contrast.
To notice differences is to separate. To separate is to isolate. To isolate is to suffer invariably.
But don’t take my word for it. See for yourself.

Creative Commons License
WitchDoctors Medicine by Jonathan D Rapphahn is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

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