Boots For the Canal

Purple and burgundy, vessels of contempt.

Upon the feet of fear,

Worn on the soles of a man broke down.

Accused of heinous acts,

Self-attacked in the face of present freedom,

Black laces, coming sadly unwound.

A thought, they’re just boots…

Coloured, distinctive…

No, they’re a catalyst;

Lewd, disgraceful, impure, malignant.

 

The canal waters asked me,

Who are you?

There was no reply to be had.

Peering into its deep, rotten waters.

Its winding stature.

What did it think of me?

Canal conversations; canal verse.

Stuck in the ritual to rehearse.

The canal, he was all I could manage.

 

Feet of purple and burgundy.

An escape, an untidiness in the act of insanity.

Anxiety, cruel in its force.

Purposeful, ruining, overcoming.

Fleeing from those corridors in tiresome doubt.

After all, they’re just boots…

2016 – Things I Did (Didn’t) Do

So, 2016… it’s ending. I suppose for some it will have already slipped into 2017, into another year of possibility. Looking back, it has been a funny, even strange year for myself… then again, aren’t they all in some way. So, here is what’s happened – the good, the bad, and the ugly:

  • Attended university for a… week
  • Begun writing poetry.
  • Evolved my love of Tea!
  • Didn’t fall completely apart.
  • Read 23 books.
  • Begun seriously meditating.
  • Scrapped two semi-written novels.
  • Kept a semi-regular diary.
  • Completed a few short-stories.
  • Found the tiniest shred of happiness.
  • Realised many things.
  • Uncovered many revelations.
  • Grown my hair.
  • Felt deep jealousy.
  • Felt contempt in my abilities.
  • Come to love at least something.

And that’s that. I hope 2017 brings the best things it can. And that I reach places and do things I never have before.

Happy New Year to you all! 🙂

-Chris ❤

Green T-Shirts

When I was around fifteen, four or five years ago, me, my dad, and my sister went on a trip to America. It was the first time I had left the United Kingdom, the first time I had been on a plane, really the first time I’d ever done anything significant. It is one of those experiences that will stick with me forever, with one part of it making a huge impact on me.

We were at a theme part called Cedar Point in Ohio. You see, back then we had a thing for rollercoasters, a big thing. Though the thing is, at that time I wasn’t exactly doing great. Not the worst things have been, but not the best either. I had also hurt my knee a week previously after falling from my bike in a futile teen-hormone fuelled attempt to become a better mountain biker. I hurt my knee and had a visit to the hospital. It wasn’t broken, only swollen, meaning I couldn’t easily bend it. So, although a week later it was better, the ten-hour cramped flight was still hell.

Anyway, back to Cedar Point – the knee also made it hard to go on some of the rides, especially the more violent ones. I still did, but not as much as my sister and dad, I had to take breaks in the fear of it worsening. Also, frankly, I was in a shitty mood. Both because of my mental state at the time, and what the knee was forcing me to miss.

I sat on a circular seat that surrounded a tree in a wide courtyard, a little way away from where my sister and dad queued for a ride. I watched the people, I liked to do that, I still do. There’s something soothing about watching the little, hardly noticable things a person does when they don’t realise they’re being watched (In a non creepy way!) Maybe sat there like that, I didn’t look so cheery, because, I suppose I wasn’t. So, these two girls came up to me. They were maybe two years older than myself at the time. They wore green t-shirts, that on them said, ‘Free Hugs!’ in big, black, bold letters. Although I don’t remember exactly, one said something along the lines of ‘you look sad, do you need a hug?” Now, because of my ravaging social anxiety, I didn’t quickly respond, but eventually, of course, I couldn’t turn them away. I thought that would be rude. And so, I stood, and one after the other I hugged them. Then they smiled, and walked away. It felt good. Some of the darkness receded. To this day, it is something I cannot forget, something I will not. Something I take great comfort in.

I don’t know why it made such an impact on me. At the time, I didn’t hug many people but family, I guess I still don’t. But it wasn’t that, it wasn’t the physical sensation. Since then, it has come to remind me of the good in people, the kindheartedness that resides within them. I still can’t figure out why they would do that, the intentions behind it. Maybe there wasn’t any, maybe they were simply good people. I like to think that. That people in general are good. That they do their best to be.

I remind myself it is the little things in life, the things like this that matter, that can make a differnce to a persons’ life. However small, however tiny the action might seem at the time. I really did need those two hugs. It made all the difference. And I will remember what those two girls did for the remainder of my life.

-Chris ❤

All That’s Required

It’s about having something,

A well to draw from,

A life to put in, an experience to harbour.

Creating existence from a lived existence.

Of which I lack, of which I am empty.

The words come from an imagined place,

An imagined life; a created one.

It sounds simple, though it is anything but.

Finding meaning, finding soul… narrative,

It’s a life’s work, a heavy heave.

And for what, I ask myself?

Like anything, the answer eludes.

It is to be done; yet, to be done is all it is.

For that well, that well of reality;

Some day I wish for it to be full.

But until then, a world created isn’t so terrible.

A Trip In Time

Yesterday we were without power for just over 24 hours. Now, obviously that isn’t a great amount of time… still, we forget how much we take something as simple as electricity for granted. Also, the ways in which it affects our lives – for better and for worse.

It was stormy outside, and the high winds must have brought down a power line somewhere. Being here in the countryside, I highly doubt we are top priority. I’m surprised they remembered us at all! Damned government! 

Still, I think it was a sobering reminder of current times. We are all so intertwined within the modern day – the lives we live online, and the endless amount of things it enables us to do. So much so, that we become locked in our ways of social media and instant, on-demand entertainment, that we forget about the things this world supresses, the things that often mean more than what replaces them. Things this world makes us forget.

The fire was roaring. Roasted veg were cooking in the Solid Fuel Range we luckily have, and a warm cup of tea was between my legs. All while I read the words of H.P. Lovecraft in the candlelight, straining my eyes to see his beautiful poetic words. I imagined him writing them under similiar conditions. Slaving away at his typewriter, endlessely relaying all the thoughts that entered his head onto the page. Taking comfort in them. And then myself being able to take the same comfort and excitement in them almost a hundred years later.

It makes you think… Sure, electricity, it allows me to write this. It allows me to read other blogs. It allows me to have access to information that would otherwise be lost on me. And yet, I feel slight pangs of sadness that I can’t live in the past. In a world with minimal electricity. Living a much simpler life – blissfully unaware of pretty much everything, if you like. Maybe this is ignorant, maybe it is even arogant, selfish to want something different to the luxury that I am thankful to have. And yet, I yearn for things to be simpler. To wake up and not have to think about the world ten miles beyond myself, to not know it even exists in any meaningful sense. To farm, pick potatoes, and cook them late at night. To sleep when it gets dark, and to wake when it becomes light.

I’m living something of a lie, I know that. It is that feeling when a part of you just doesn’t fit.

As silly as this sounds, sometimes I find myself looking towards an apocalypse… well, maybe it even sounds macarbe, or sick. I don’t pretend to know exactly why I feel like this, nor why I can rationally justify it in any sane way. It’s one of this things that just is. Maybe I’ve watched too many episodes of The Walking Dead, or maybe I want something to actually happen in my life. Though I know in reality, if it were to happen, I might not fare so well. I like to think better than some, (I’m a country person, I know basic survival things,) but within a month, I’d probably be dead…

Anyway… don’t forget the simple things in life. Take away all the modern-day for a second, and just enjoy and feel the moment as it is. Just be human, removed from everything else but its pure, natural state. Meditate. Leave the Facebook and Twitter feeds alone for a while! Trust me!

-Chris ❤

The Effort Put In

Youthful, or it may seem.

A day, a change in time.

A year, a change in history.

Something we live; something we breathe.

Experience, what does it mean?

Can it be valued… surely.

It has to mean more than anything.

For without it, what is living?

Though on days, it is hard to greet;

That possibility of something that’s new to me.

Waiting, willing it to come.

Yet in the midst of everything it does not.

Because the effort put in was far too thin.

 

Things Now

I haven’t really thought about that week at university too much. In some respects it seems like it didn’t happen at all, in others it is all too clear in memory. Though I don’t chastise myself for it. I don’t tell myself the time was wasted, or that it was for nothing. All experiences are valuable, whether in the first instance they seem good or bad. Experiences are worth more than anything else. They teach us more than anything else. And if it wasn’t anything else, it was surely an experience.

So… that was a month and a half ago… have I changed?

Maybe… perceiving change is a hard thing to do. Especially over such a small period of time. I seriously hope at least the tinniest amount of change has happened, the smallest shred somewhere in my mind. I’m not sure though. I do feel somewhat different. As though the catalyst for that change has just poked its head around the corner and begun work on its long, tedious job. This I feel good about. The notion of it alone is good enough.

For I have until next September to be a new person… no, not a new person, but a new version of myself. A person who is ready, confident, compassionate, motivated. If I am all of these things by that point, then I have the best chance possible to get where I want to go. And even if things then don’t work out. It will be an experience. I can say that I have tried my best, no less.

And trying against all of the odds – that’s the biggest thing any person can do.

 

-Chris ❤