Thursday, December 29, 2011

Shadow Games

Can the writer
Sputter, whither
cough, and die?
Is there a bang
or a whimper?
And the little voice inside
draws the shades.
Puts out the fire
And the words cease
Is that how it works?

Monday, November 21, 2011

For the Common Good...

We often ask, when debating over which tax bill to support or what candidate to vote for or which charity to support, what will do the most for the common good? It's an important question to ask, for the common good is critical to the health of our society. But what really is the common good? In an article published back in '92, a few Jesuit ethics students set out to examine what exactly was the common good and why we as a society have such trouble agreeing on what it is. They identify four major obstacles preventing us (Western society in this case) from achieving the common good. First, the pluralism that our society holds so dear is at some times inconsistent with a single common good. Different groups hold differing things as important and we can not put one before another without violating the liberties of some group. This problem has become more pronounced since previously oppressed groups, like women and minorities, have gained a voice. (Refer to the '60s for further evidence.) Second, you always have free-riders who take advantage of the system without contributing to it. If enough people don't help out, the systems set in place to ensure the common good collapse. Third, our tradition of individualism conflicts with the common good when our interests are not aligned with the good of the whole. Various philosophies have tried to reconcile this issue, notably capitalism, but none have done well enough for my liking at least. The final issue is that of an uneven distribution of burdens. Groups like big business might have to shoulder more weight than the urban power. This can create animosity, as we have seen with some Republican candidates complaining that a large chunk of Americans don't pay income taxes while the Democrats want to raise the tax rate on the upper brackets.
So with all these issues, why should we even focus on the common good anymore? It doesn't even seem to exist in America at this point. With the destruction of the "establishment" during the '60s, the one central force for the common good (albeit one with a rich, white, Protestant male bent) ceased to be effective. The banking institution which has replaced it lacks a certain level of...morality and as such doesn't do much for any one's common good (other than their own). The UN has the capability to be that international force for good, if only we could agree on what is actually the common good.
Is there a force in America today that is capable of sustaining a common good? What does that common good consist of? Are we ever going to agree on one?

Thursday, November 10, 2011

The Mist

The fog rolls in off the coast. It falls between the hills and fills up the valleys. An empty silence descends upon the landscape and the men shiver in their coats. The officers pass before the line on their horses, looking out into the void where they cannot see. They listen for the enemy, but hear only the breathing of their own horses. Fear follows the fog, seeps into coats and the men shiver again. Then the drums begin to roll out of the fog.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

College Essays...

We can dream and we can live, but without history we live and dream in empty space, void of context and understanding.

(Sorry for the lack of posts, for I am writing college essays and my writing tank is near empty.)

Monday, October 3, 2011

Courtyard of Stone

It is in the silence we discover our inner most
Left to drift aimless on the sea
We gaze upon the unknown depths
And ponder the mysteries
Sit alone in a courtyard of stone
Rainfall on the roof is the only music
Careful not to be crushed
By the silence that is closing in
As a mist descends onto the quite hilltops
You stare out into a world unseen
And sure that you know nothing
Release yourself into the silent void

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Hunchbacked Reflections

Love can destroy
As much as build
Flames of the heart
Are still flames that burn

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

That Zinn Reading

Is the past the same as history?
Knowledge differs from experience
A collective memory
Shared and shaped
Serving a purpose far above
Simple 'membrance
Unknown multitudes lay hidden
Not waiting to be discovered
But permanently languishing in
Shrouded eternity

Monday, September 12, 2011

Where'd You Go?

Apologies for the dearth of new posts....that's a my bad. Will write again shortly.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Last Night of Freedom begins tomorrow. It's weird to think that tomorrow is the day I consider the start of the year. Anyway, never a better time for poetry than a time with a mixture of trepidation and anticipation.

Starring through the rain
Drops on the pavement
Splash, plop
Each drop encasing a memory
Enough fall to the ground
And a small river forms
Thoughts blend together
Many different ideas move along
Forming a single stream of consciousness
You sit down
Peer into individual drops
See reflections of time
Long ago
Suddenly a new spout opens
Same water, different direction
New river flows
Winds in and out of the old
Swallows it up and redirects

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Where Am I?

Without needing to ask
Could you figure out why
I called you tonight?
No? Good, neither can I.
Without direction, sometimes
Poetry takes you places
You don't wish to visit.
Starting with one idea,
but finding another
Before pen even meets paper
Anger, pain, sadness, joy
All flow without prejudice or price
Words arrive, thoughts left open
For interpretation, for misuse
A poet's gift is also a curse
Lacking definition, words undefined
Can be twisted
And in the end
You look back
And can't seem to find
The path you intended
To Travel.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Wet Word Play

There is grace in the world,
Lying unseen in the clouds
Flowing in channels underground
Like floodwaters, rising unexpectedly
Sometimes threatening to drown us
Second chances pour from the sky
Confused, you stumble
Searching for a source, a cause
A reason
Knee deep in forgiveness, you start to swim
Powerless, you are carried onward by the current
Minutes, hours, days later
You find your footing
Standing, you look around.
The hills glow, soaking in the beauty
Rained down upon them
Smile cracks, and you begin to laugh.
You run, you dive into the current
And let yourself be carried away
By grace

Friday, August 26, 2011

Life is not the Movies

Life isn't like the movies. Stuff doesn't always happen as part of some master plan. Stuff doesn't blow up as you walk away from it. Things aren't always black and white and sometimes there isn't a happy ending. Sad things happen to all of us, but they don't have to detract from the good things that happen. For my Movie/Life, something sad happened recently. (Full disclosure: it was entirely my fault.) But things aren't all sad in this moment. I have come out of it with a wonderful best friend. So there is a good that has not been lessened by a bad. My movie doesn't end with a dramatic explosion or with a romantic kiss in the rain. Mine ended on a porch, on a calm night. No explosions. And now the cast is free to work on another project.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Captain has Turned on the "Fasten Seatbelts" Sign

One of the coolest things about flying is that you can see shadows from the clouds. Most of the time, we don't even notice them, but from 24,000 feet they are easy to spot. It's a neat metaphor for changing perspectives. When you travel, no matter how much of yourself you bring along in your bubble, you still encounter new things. Sometimes travel can be good because it helps "open your eyes to new possibilities." That sounds like something on an ad for a travel company, but it has some truth to it. For me it doesn't mean that just because I flew across the county I will have an entirely new outlook on life. It might for you, who knows, right? But for me the travel gives me some space, both physically and mentally. Space can be good. While being close to a topic can make it easier to understand, space and time is needed to process and reflect on things. For me, two weeks in California away from almost all civilization has been really helpful in reflecting on my past three years. Now I feel (a little) more prepared to dive into my college essays. Hopefully 24,000 feet is enough space for me.

Posted from 24,000 Feet above Colorado

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

An Evening in the Orchard

This may be the last time I get any real rest for the next few days. Tomorrow, my mom's entire family will descend in force on my current retreat, my grandpa's wonderful house hidden away in the hills of southern California. There will be over 15 people living here by this time tomorrow and my current living space, a small trailer in the orchard, will have to be shared with my brother. Oh joy. It's nice to be disconnected from the world for a change. I must admit, I'm not totally of the grid (as this post certainly attests to. But I only check my email and Facebook once in the evening, and overall try to spend very little time online. It has been nice to just enjoy the pool, and the peace, and the satellite television. I should probably start working on some of my college essays and finish up my summer reading while I am here, but so far the willpower to do so has escaped me. Maybe the influx of people, and the anticipated denial of the T.V. that will surely come with it, will be enough to force me to write or read.

May your night bring you rest and your dreams, joy.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Requiescat in pace

Death is cliche
Even that is cliche
It's all been said
Whispered in hushed tones
Grief and sorror mingle indiscriminately
With happy memories
It comes to us all
Life's great cliche
We all die in the end
It's hard to separate Death from Morbid
Death, while sad
Carries with it some happiness
Remember man that you are dust
And unto dust you shall return
To be blown about as joyous thoughts
And smiling memories
Through endless years and on countless tongues
Person to thought

Requiescat in pace
Uncle Norb

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Silent Land

You never notice something until it's gone
It hangs heavy in the air
Twin to the humidity that blankets
The house on the hill
You reach out to touch it
Feel it envelope you
Spend some time with it

Shared moments,
Smiles exchanged
Laughs understood, instead of spoken
A seat, a world
The sky opens and rain arrives
One hill, sun lit
The other, grey and sodden
Yours is pleasantly aglow, drenched
In both water and light

At first your focus draws to it
Then it becomes a passing afterthought
Finally emerging as a vehicle
To shepherd the mind,
The expand the focus to see
The entirety of it all

An absence of something
Leading to a fullness of everything

Friday, July 22, 2011

Or Both

The problem with looking back, he decided, was that you tended to see more than you wanted. He hated his past. Constantly haunted by one bad decision or another, he never stopped moving. Trying to run from something he knew he had messed up. The trouble was, he always ran way too far. By the time he stopped and took a look back, he realized that for one reason or another, he still was not in the right place. He hoped this time would be different. The plane ride had been long, he was tired, and before he could stop and look around, he needed to sleep. For a long time. The escape had drained him. Utterly exhausting, these past three days had been. One of these days he was going to see a trainer. Or a shrink. Or both. But that thought died before his foot hit the tarmac. Too much effort involved. Not really, but that's what he liked to tell himself. It saved him the effort of having to actually do it. And, more importantly, it saved him from having to deal seriously with whatever he was running from that particular week.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

My Evening News Feed

Nothing to do tonight

Here we go...
Allow me to reintroduce myself
I just had a lovely evening
And I'm feeling good.

Let the waterworks begin:
Look at your look at mine
You can't see my eyes
Do I always have to fuck it up?

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Writers Blocked

A horrible, crippling inability
Full of passion
Bereft of skill and drive
An aching need, a desire unquenchable
Yet, you can not find the release
Line after line of words seep from the pen
A story unfolds, stops, begins again
Despair overcomes
Finally, only a blank slate is left
Nothing worthy remains but a few scattered phrases
You look down, waiting for your vision to coalesce
A wall formed between paper and thought

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Many Goodbyes

Tear-stained cheeks and heartfelt hugs
Loved, loved and lost,
Internet connections remain
Loose ties to once known flesh
A glimpse of online presence
Shattered hopes
Depressing poetry flows
A weird, electronic death knell
Facebook announcing life changing moments
Chilling, virtual sterility
for deeply personally changes

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Campuses Combine

Arrive, always early
Pen and paper suggested
(Parents, it's okay for you to sleep.)
Scribbled phrases
Diverse. Engaging.
Breadth. Depth.
Remember a word
Two if you can
Scurry about, building to building
Arts here, Dining there
Sorry, we can't show show you a dorm…
Memories blur as campuses combine
Each school reduced
Remember one thing
This concept
That catch-phrase
If I had to describe our school in one word…

Home, exhausted
So, what did you see?
Where do you want to go?
Are you still awake?

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Today's Theme Is...

Day 5: Tuesday - Boston College and Boston University
Yay! More college tours! So much fun! Boston College was the first stop for us. A very nice looking campus, though with a lot of construction, it was our first Catholic college of the summer. Run by Jesuits with a strong commitment to service, it was very interesting to a different perspective to the collegiate experience. With a strong history program, lots of student theater opportunities, and that special Jesuit influence, it definitely looks a strong contender. One special note, BC has been the only school to admit to being a research school. Every other school has tried to avoid saying that. Honesty is good, though admittedly, the nest words out of the Admission Director said was "Of course, there is a strong focus on teaching and undergraduate research." Next stop was Boston University. (Yeah, BC and BU in the same day.) A much different atmosphere: large, very large, university in the city. I really enjoyed the combination of city life coupled with a close-knit campus. Again, good theater and history. Got to have a long chat with a Theater Design minor, which was quite insightful. It was really cool because BU is in Boston, and right in the city, but doesn't really feel like it's in the city like UPenn does. Large population, 16,000 undergrads, but I felt like I could find a community there. Things I learned: Don't be afraid to walk the extra mile (literally) to find out what you need to know. Also, take lots of pictures of random of people is loads of fun.

Day 6: Wednesday - UMass Amherst & Amherst College
Today was my first state school. Wow...that was an experience. First off, UMass Ahmerst reminds me a bit of Soviet city. It has these huge brick and concrete towers dotting campus, and the campus center is this very odd cement building. But more importantly, I don't want to go to a school where the average class size is larger than my high school classes. And with 26,000 thousand students and a student-to-faculty ratio of almost 20 to 1, the time I would realistically get with my professors would be significantly less than I want. Amherst College, on the extreme other side of the spectrum, is a tiny (1,800 students), elite liberal arts school. It has lots of money and has a strong commitment to the liberal arts with its Open Curriculum that lets you take whatever course you want. No strings attached. So, interesting contrasts between huge and tiny schools. Lessons attained: Don't be afraid to not like a school based your impression. Because UMass Amherst just ain't happening. Also, don't miss a chance to talk to others going through the process. Random people in the pool can provide good feedback.

Monday, June 27, 2011

College Visits Day 1-4

Day 1 Friday - Columbia
An early departure, well early for summer, and mildly uneventful trip to New York City mark the beginning my first long string of college visits. First stop on the tour is Columbia. Columbia's information session takes place in the most filmed classroom in the nation. Highlights from the admissions officer included a string of bad jokes and a focus on the Core Curriculum. The Core is the academic hallmark of a Columbia education. (I would discover over the course of the next few days that most of the schools have the exact same litany advantages: Small "average" class size, focus on undergraduate research, 100% of demonstrated need-based aid will be met, the list goes on.) The trick, or at least my trick, is to find one special thing about each college to remember that will stick with me. The Columbia campus is beautiful, an enclave within the heart of the city. There is a belief that New York should be used as a resource for learning and many classes go downtown as part of the curriculum.
Day 2 & 3: The Weekend
Saturday involved a trip into NYC with my Dad and the two Scarsdale cousins. We went into Times Square and got half-price tickets to see Chicago. With a slight detour to visit the Harry Potter Exhibition, we headed off to the theater to thoroughly enjoy the Chicago revival. After the show ended, we returned via trian to the suburbs and headed out to Fairfield , CT to stay the night with some old neighbors. Sunday morning we visited the new Jesuit house at Fairfield University. Then we swam in the near-by lake before driving up to Boston. Early afternoon brought us the Boston suburbs, where we hoped the Green Line into the city. Once there, we walked over to the Boston Commons. There we played some frisbee. (A very good player joined us for a bit. He likes to play shirtless apparently.) After a enjoyable time where we learned a new throw, we walked along the Freedom Trail to the wharfs. After enjoyable dinner and ice cream, we returned to the hotel and promptly fell asleep.
Day 4: Monday - Harvard & Tufts
An other early rising. An aborted drive to Cambridge, and a better thought out 'T' trip to Harvard marked the start of a sunny Monday in Boston. Our visit to the oldest college in the United States was a mainly positive one. The admissions officer offered some good insight into the application process and what it means to apply to a selective school. Harvard isn't always looking for well-rounded students. Rather, they admissions staff is responsible for creating a well rounded class. This means that they will sometimes pick very not-well-rounded people to admit in order to fill out the class. (An attempt to rationalize why good students don't get into Harvard.) The important thing about Harvard to remember is the "house system" of upper clansmen housing and the rich Harvard tradition. After our Harvard tour concluded, we grabbed a taxi and headed out to Tufts. Here we were greated by an especially insightful officer. He posed some truly thought-provoking questions (I'll finish up with those), as well as discussing the small college feel that Tufts holds onto even as a small university. Our tour guided lead us through the beautiful campus, which is also quite hilly. Apparently it's good sledding. Also, there are 25 shows per semester, all of which need Tech. I don't hink I'll be out of work in college. Here are some questions you should answer about college before you apply:
Where am I going to be in a year? Why do I do the things I do and how do I do them? Why do I want to go to college?

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Teen Math

What is it about angsty teenagers that leads to poetry? I know it doesn't for most people, but for me, this year has been one filled with poetry. I'm not sure what it was about Junior year, which is over by-the-way, but it seemed to give me a lot of verse, and little prose. I guess it might have something to do with a lack of writing time, but hopefully this summer will see the return of a bit of substantial writing. Not that I mind poetry, mind you, but I do miss a bit of plot. I'm pretty excited for school to be over. I plan on enjoying my summer as much as possible. It promises to be an art-filled summer with lots of writing and photography. One nice thing about having a lot of artsy friends is it provides endless encouragement to continue doing some type of art, whether it be taking pictures of writing. But tonight is a night to relax and sleep. It is the first night of summer after all.

Teen + Angst = Poetry?

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Another Poem....Really?

A word, a phrase
Oft spoken to convey
A message
That has no need for words
Some find humor
Others apathy
A few anger
There is little cause
A message
doesn't need to be
spoken to the point
of fatigue
A message should be
Concise and to the point
Or flowery for purpose
But to continually blabber
A message
For no cause,
Deserves nothing but distaste

Monday, June 13, 2011

Lonesome Travels

Often, some of best times for reflection can be found near the end of hectic times. The sudden release from overwhelming obligation gives one the ample time needed to consider things. I, the proud new owner of a Decades-less existence, have found myself without anything to do for the first time in weeks. It's an unexpected occurrence and I'm having trouble finding things to occupy my time. (That last bit's a lie; I'm currently an hour into a five hour rehearsal.) But with the chance to have a large chunk of time (mostly) my own, I figured it would be a good chance to fill my lonely blog with some more writing.


Never one to complain
He ran to and fro
Completing tasks
Filling roles, Saving the day
A cliche
An overachiever
A Misplaced sense of duty
Driving onward

He talks big, but doesn't speak
Of anything real
Lounges about
Overlooks all, attempting to direct
Those whom displease
A man
An underwhelming figure
Puzzled at a lack of respect
From those he covets most

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

A Poetry Binge

How do you
Define yourself?
It is by the awards you receive
The games you win
The books you write
The songs you sing
The tests you ace
The friends you have
The things you have
The things you want
Or is you internal definition
A bit more
Do you find that you
Define yourself as You

Friday, May 27, 2011

Complete Foolishness

If one could ask anything
Really anything
What would you ask?
Can you say
with a straight face
That it would be deep and
Or would you rather know the
Answer to a question which actually
Plagues your daily life
But to others sounds like
complete foolishness
Tell me that with a straight face
And I will look back at you and say
"You, my friend, are either a liar or
a fool…

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

A Certain Moment

Okay, so being a junior sucks at the end of the year. At my school, we have to do a Decades Project, where we make a half-hour, memorized presentation about a certain decade or presidential administration. It's just what every kid wants, a huge project at the end of the year, plus two finals!! Yay! But it shouldn't be too bad. And then I get to go look at colleges...Exciting! Any suggestions for a history/theater kid?

What's the difference between honor and reputation? Which is more important?

The world is an unfair, unbalanced place. Society makes the rich richer and keeps the poor poor. There is no peace, only pauses between war. War is easy. You don't have to truly understand a people to fight them. You just send your young men to kill their young men. Sometimes not even that. You push a button and it kills their young men and demolishes their buildings. War is the failure of people to listen and understand. War is the ultimate cliche.

A certain moment
Occasionally well-defined
More often vague and hard to place
Effects a change
In behavior
Mood, outlook, life
A path is charted for those
Who know where the landmarks are
Others find nothing but ashes
But you know where to look
To see the shinning beacon,
Hanging from the ceiling
This moment will be long
While you continue to live,
Subtly shaped by it
Insignificance grown to purpose

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Strolling Up Market Street

A light drizzle. I walk down the street, all sides filled with people, full of self-importance with someplace they need to be five minutes ago. I slow down, fall off onto a side alley. Calmly make my way to the old side of town. Music seeps onto the softly lit streets. From one door, big band, another, smooth jazz. From yet another drains the soulless life of last generations music, its message lost on a people who did not share its struggles. They all mix and form a peaceful tone as I stroll to a park. I sit and look on, bemused, as young men in tuxedos and young women in short dresses scamper about between shows and dinners and late night adventure. I see what they cannot. I look away from them quickly, the exuberance of youth too potent in the early evening dim. Instead, my eyes find the lonely old men who walk alone down the slowly filling sidewalks. Worn out by life, they search and find a bar, aged like them, to share in bottled solace. I smile at them, knowing they are the ancestors of those young tuxes. The rain begins to pick up, the street lamps now faint beacons in the mist. I continue my stroll, undaunted by nature. She has been here long before me and wont mind if I do not pay her heed this once. I find my way at last to that one cross-street, the place I am drawn to nearly every night. Seemingly oblivious to the rain pouring out to greet its denizens, life bustles on the street. Here is life. Here is where I live and breath and do my work. Here I live. I step off the curb and into the whirlwind of life. The real journey begins here...

Critical Mass

Well it's that time of year again. Yes, you guessed it, I'm sitting back at the light board for the high school band's Spring Concert. Joy of joys. The music isn't bad, some of it quite enjoyable actually, but it is so long…one does wish for a bit more brevity in these things. It has given me great motivation to read Grapes of Wrath, however, so at the very least it can be said that I have done my homework. The one thing I really love about these concerts is that the music provides great background noise to ponder. Being a wise, learned, and well-traveled 17-year-old, there is but so much to ponder. What is the meaning of life? How can one be truly happy? What's for lunch tomorrow? These are the imperative questions that are yearning for an answer, though not necessarily listed in order of importance. But in all seriousness, it is so nice to run into some free time. I don't know what to do with myself! A lot of stuff has been on my mind lately, it's good to get time to process it. Nothing coherent yet, but general musings and a more developed awareness of how humans function. Society is incredibly interesting, you should really look into it sometime. Especially the idea of the social contract. Fascinating how unspoken agreements between groups and individuals are all that's really holding the world together. On another quick note, don't ever let things fester. Life is better with honesty. Sounds cliche, it is. But it's a good idea. Also, never piss off the person who is going to be your boss. That's NEVER a good idea.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Exams...They Are Finished!

So as promised, a piece of writing. (Apologies, its not very good)
When one is told that something is definitely true, one's first instinct is to try to find a way to disprove it. When is one is told something is false, one similarly tries to discover a counter. But when one comes upon a piece of knowledge, untainted by loud pronouncements, one is inclined to take it at what it is: wisdom.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Exams. Exams. Exams.

AP Exams...they suck. AP Calculus today. U.S. History on Friday. U.S. Government next Tuesday. Two major projects this week. Plus, having to deal with crap at school. And try to stay sane. I'll try to write soon, once I get all the stress and bitching out of my system....

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Birthday Punches

A day much like any other
Rising and living just the same
Nothing different
Nothing changed
Yet greeted by wishes
And unexpected greetings
And half-hearted songs sung by half-awake teens
And candy and cards
These things that visit once a year
Placed up as a milestone
A marker of what is to come
A special day for a single soul
Another day for the world
Celebrated as another year of life
One minute to another
Makes all the difference
Happy Birthday

Friday, April 22, 2011


If one takes the time
to know another
One can often discover
unknown depths of desire
Whether you crave attention
Or seek the shadows
You will have someone who
Holds the key to your

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Prayers of the Night

Lord, deliver me from evil

Lord, deliver my enemies
into my hand

Protect me from those
who wish me harm
and guard me from the wicked

That I may be the swift bearer
of your divine vengeance

Grant me courage and strength
Be my shield

And bind thine Spirit into my blade
That I may send their eternal souls
down to Hell

I ask this through you
Almighty God

Grant me this
Almighty God



Thursday, March 31, 2011

Requisite Fourth

Having established a pattern of four posts per month, I think it would be a shame for March to go by with only three. Unfortunately, inspiration escapes me. But you can't have everything…

He sits on the floor of the hall. Early morning sleep just barely clearing from his mind. As he leans up against the wall, he watches the students walk past. Some keep their heads low, others strut down the avenue of friends, calling to people. Many silent faces stare out behind closed hoods. No one recognizes him. Silent beginning to a silent day of a silent life. People talk but they do not speak, people hear but they do not listen, and people look but they do not see.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

For Thine is the Kingdom

Sitting alone
Atop a tower of
Charred ideals
Scanning the torched land
Spread beneath your smoldering palace
For thine is the kingdom,

Below they scurry
Stacking lost hope
Next to forgotten dreams
Movement and progress
You revel in the splendor
and the power,

Rising rapidly
Towers and spires pierce
The smoke filled sky
A monument to suffering
Forgotten but for the memories
and the glory,

Lasting tolls on a
Psyche burdened by
Thoughts of darkness
You mount your deadly throne
for ever and ever.

Monday, March 14, 2011

The Pavement Shines Like Silver

Well, it has been a while. Mea culpa. Lets see...what do I have...

I rise.
I arrive.
I work.
I depart.

You rise.
You arrive.
You work.
You do not depart.

We live
But we do not

So I have had a very long weekend. We spent 28 hours building the set for the show. It looks amazing. But we aren't quite done yet. Don't worry, we'll finish. I have had the itch to write the whole week, but I am not sure about what. I have so much to say, and nothing to talk about. If only there was something...

They strolled together along the dark riverside, stealing kisses in the misty darkness between puddles of lamplight. A car approaches, twin eyes burn through the fog. He pulls her hand. She follows and they tumble down the bank. Coming to a stop near a newly-fallen tree, he pulls her close. They gave up at the tinted night, picking out the faint glimmer of stars through the mist. Across the nearly placid river lies the City. After a while she pulls his head towards the light. Her head goes to his shoulder and sticks, her hands wrap around him. Safe. The drizzle no longer penetrates the greatcoats. They kiss. She smiles.

Wow, that was a bit mushy. Sorry about that. I'll try to keep that to a minimum coming up. Hum...what else have I been up to? Well there was the trip to the E.R., but thats not really to entertaining. I have been writing a research paper on women's education in America. You want to read some of that? Okay...

This was due, partially, to the work of M. Carey Thomas, who advocated single-sex education as the most effective way to education women. Carey, the second president of Bryn Mawr College, strongly argued for the same education for both men and women. This brought her into direct confrontation with president of Harvard, Charles Eliot. Eliot believed that women could not stand up to the rigors of a classical education (Horowitz 317). Carey, in direct opposition to that idea, held up only the highest entry standards for Bryn Mawr and strongly advocated for an equal education, regardless of sex. Her battle with Eliot over education often grew heated, and she wrote to a friend saying, “Eliot disgraced himself. He said the traditions of past learning and scholarship were of no use to women’s education…that women’s colleges ought to be schools of manners and really was hateful” (Thomas).

Anything else for you? I'm sure you're probably gone by now, so I can probably sneak in some sort of inappropriate Latin phrase right now:Utinam barbari spatium proprium tuum invadant! Illiud Latine dici non potest. Hahaha...why aren't you laughing? It's really funny, trust me. I don't really have much else at the moment. Life has been interesting recently. Nothing to major. I've realized I don't do a good job of being proud of myself. I have an anti-ego issues. (Cue disagreements from peanut gallery.)

He sits alone at his desk. The laptop shines a thin blue light, barely illuminating his bare face. A single, red desk lamp provided bare light for the entire room. It flickers as the train passes outside the cracked window. He sits back, the chair creaking underneath despite his small frame. Slowly, he reaches for the spectacles, not glasses, spectacles near his right hand. The clock on his wrist tells him it's 11:49, but time is unimportant. It's relative after all. This man knows that fact well. So he takes his time putting on the spectacles. As they slide down his nose, the world comes into focus. He stares down at the pad of paper to his left. Three days of work. Gingerly, he lowers his chair back to the floor. It's old hardwood, the finish long gone and holes slowly opening up below his legs. But he takes no notice. He begins to type. The words come out slow at first, tentative, but soon his fingers glide across the keyboard. His hands look almost motionless. Only the line of text rapidly marching across the screen belies his true speed.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

What Now...?

Well it's been quite a week…quite a week…
I have been having trouble focusing on things. Some people are being annoying, others assholes, and others angels. Might write later, but probably not now.

Value understanding above all else. All conflict stems from a lack of understanding.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Credo in Unum...

It is very difficult, at least for me, to state what I believe. I know what I believe when confronted with an opposing view point, but when asked to present my credo, I come up short. I think that is a problem that holds true across humanity. It's a lot easier to be against a set of ideas than it is to stand for something. I can say I am against violence. My school is against strapless shirts. The United States is against terrorism. But it is much more difficult to stand for things. Very rarely will an organization come out with a list of things they believe and will fight for. Rather, it is more often a list of things to fight against. To oppose, rather than champion.

I believe that is is never right to kill anyone, ever. I believe that one should not judge others. One should be helpful whenever possible, and at least courteous when you can't. If you have the power to help others, you should help others. if you see a job, and know how to do it, do it. I believe that government's purpose is to protect and serve it's people. Science and religion are both important, they aren't opposites, and they aren't enemies. It is possible to understand, you just have to listen.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Recent Reading

So recently I finished two wonderful, and entirely unrelated, books: Fool by Christopher Moore and The First Jesuits by John W. O'Malley. One is a raunchy take on King Lear, the other is a history of the founding of the Society of Jesus. Polar opposites. But both worth discussing.
Delightfully funny (I've been told it's even more so if one actually reads King Lear), this book interested me for two reasons. One, there is a warning attached. Any book with a warning is worth reading simply because someone thinks it's dangerous/inappropriate/roll-on-the-floor-laughing hilarious. This one definitely falls into all three categories. An excellent example of witty, historical humor. I highly suggest it.
The First Jesuits
Of a very different tone, this book does a similarly excellent in it's area: history. The author brings together a wealth of information into a, relatively, concise book that details the founding and first few years of the Jesuits. I enjoyed it because it was a narrative history, that got across facts and provided a broad vision of the events, while still managing to be entertaining, at least for me. I would recommend this book, but only if you actually enjoy history. If not, please see the previous section.

To err is human, but to really f*ck things up requires a computer – Law of Unreliability

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Within Reason...

Can't write at the moment. No idea why. A list:

Techie’s Does and Don’ts

* Safety first. ALWAYS!
* Always clean up!
* Respect everyone. That includes the actors.
* If you don’t have a job, ask for one.
* Don’t know how to do a job, ask for help.
* Have a good idea, tell the PSM. But at a good time, please.
* Show up to call on-time and ready to work.
* Do what you’re asked. Within reason…
* IF you are going to be here, work!
* If you have a problem, bring it to the Tech Director or PSM.

Common Sense is…

* If you see something that needs doing, and know how to do it correctly, do it.
* If you finish your job, ask for another or help someone else.
* If you see someone who needs help, help them
* Come prepared. Wear the right clothes. (No open-toed shoes.)
* Always wear eye protection when cutting. ALWAYS!
* Don’t throw food, drinks, or sawdust in the wood dumpster.
* Don’t touch the boards if you don’t how to use them.
* Anything else you know you should be doing…

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Status Update

If we have no fear
We do not live
It gives us meaning
And drives us onward

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

A Final Story

Endings are odd. Sometimes they are supposed to be happy and care free. A mutual decision between people. Everyone goes about away and they are all happy about it. School, however, creates a very weird situation. When a class is over there is an odd sense of finality and conclusion, and yet you will see the people again next semester. So there is a sense that things are not quite finished. A false ending, as it were.

If we were to end
There would be nothing
Left of us for others

We pass
Quick words
Nodded heads
A short salute

I see her
Standing off
Memories of Virgil
Nothing remains

I see him
We wave
And smile

It is over
Nothing left
But faded memories

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Vine Street Rumble

Ever get mad at someone for being better than you? I do. It’s very frustrating when someone else outshines you, especially in an area you consider your forte. It can drive you nuts; at least it drives me nuts sometimes. It can be pretty aggravating. Occasionally, it will drive you to do better, to try and "beat" them, but most of the time it just sends you plummeting into a funk. (For lack of a better word.) And that just makes it worse. Personally, I haven’t found a perfect way around this, but I have found some tricks that help. Idea the first: Ignore them. That didn’t work, Good, that's what I thought. Idea the second: Find something else you are good at. If they’re “beating” you at history, “beat” them at math. Or something like that. It’s not the most mature course of action, but it makes me feel much better. Idea the third: (If all else fails) Remember that life is not a competition. They might be performing better than you at that moment, but so what. Find happiness in your work. That’s all that matters. And if you really can’t do that, I know a guy...

50 points to anyone who figures out the reason behind the title.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Offer It Up

So I'm up at 2:40 on a Monday morning because I am sick and can't sleep. It's loads and loads of fun, especially the part about being sick. It has been said often (a little too often, if you ask me) that a little bit of suffering is good for the soul. (Quick side note: ever notice how the people saying that for the most part aren't the ones who are suffering. But that is a story for a different time) Anyway, the point being is I having been watching this mini-series The Pillars of the Earth, about the building of a cathedral in medieval England. I thoroughly enjoyed it. It ended with this wonderful shot of the cathedral as it stands today, looking almost exactly as it "looks" being built in the 12th Century. It was an incredibly moving piece of work.
For me, one of the most powerful experiences there is in the world is to stand inside a structure that was built hundreds or even thousands of years ago and think about the people who built it. It can truly boggle the mind if you let it. Consider, for example, this cathedral. It was built over the course of several lifetimes almost 900 years ago. The people who began its construction did not live to see its completion and those who did see it finished would never know for how long it would stand. And yet it remains with us today, as a powerful reminder of the strength and endurance of mankind's works. Reflecting about what must have been going through those workers minds as they labored on a building they themselves would never see completed, I a struck by their dedication. I can not imagine spending one's entire adult life laboring on one project, only to die with it still incomplete. With that mindset, looking at these magnificent buildings brings with it a whole new sense of power. You are viewing a person's life work. This is what they spent their time on, what they left behind for us. It leaves me with a feeling of something close to duty or responsibility. That we as a collective people have a duty to those who came before us to preserve their works, so that their legacy may live on and so their creations may continue to shine. Imagine building something like a cathedral in 1150. I can't.
In the end, thinking about this serves to make me feel better and worse. Worse because it makes my mild suffering pale by comparison, and no one ever likes to be outdone, and better because it reminds be of what human beings can accomplish. But in the end, I'm still a bit sick, a bit tired, and it's now 2:55 a.m., so maybe now I will try to get some sleep.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

In a Moment

Sleep? Funny.

An endless progression
One moment into
The next without

Living with no
Rest for mind and
Spirit broken by
Life without

Relentless pace
Slowly inexorably separating
The very essence of
Your being from
The body containing it
Life without pause

Told to rest
Unable to do so
Crumbling under the
Forces brought to
Bear thoughtlessly
Life without

Apologies for not writing in a while. I've have been quite busy and have had very little mental down time. I really need a break. (Snow day, that means you!) But I found some time to write this on the late bus home today. Hopefully more will be forthcoming.

Life isn't simple. And any man who tells you otherwise is either a liar or a fool.