You might be wondering what this “cost” is, and that, believe me, I’ll get to telling you. I think you’ll find it humorous that I’ll go ahead and quote myself here. And by “quote myself”, I’m not talking about that pair of quotation marks or me saying something as I am now; I mean to use fiction as a means of defining a reality. Yours, and the costs, and how recognition, can be a writing trap of itself.
“It takes a good person to find loveliness in the most unlovely things. Like the rain.” Liquor. Morphine. These substances, among many others bring men to no longer care for the atrocities of the war around them. They’re soldier’s diseases, but only one of them has even begun to flux into that archetype. Morphine, that evil, seditious drug that undermines the very purpose of men everywhere. Somewhere in China, a man is screaming in his sleep, unconscious. For a fix. Perhaps that’s just what society is.
“That’s a presumptuous notion of you, Cadence.” Unplugged. People far away, even when they’re on the inside. Vis-à-vis little adorable Cadence here. Cadence was what one would refer to as isolated. She saw goodness in everything. But that’s not what made her isolated. She was isolated because she found good in herself. Finding good in oneself is a permanent separator.
“I’m a charitable person. I’m lovely, and you should know that you are too!” Implying such is the swinging of the cleaver, and the chopping of the meat — a finger away from the human body — the grasping of the whole machine is weakened by its loss. The introduction of more than one absolute person makes the loss even more severe. If the entire human family decided become these zealous freaks of nature who saw the goodness within themselves as a definitive, objective source of morality the universe over… we would become as a paralyzed body. Unable of movement forward, backwards, upwards or horizontal.
“Thanks. But I don’t deserve to be called lovely; I’ve done horrible, horrible things.” Permanently locked in the backwards state where all is true, but never truly vindicated. Disingenuous is the notion, even though the notion, at the start, in the heart, is quite the opposite. To bring oneself to believe the shit — pardon Clayton’s language — that they spew whole-heartedly. To believe in the holistic mockery of the universe with full faith. It is a completely stupid notion to claim that a group of objects cannot be split. Clayton could rant about this for hours. Perhaps he would.
“Lies! You’re the nicest person I met, and you’ve even put up that nasty habit you had of drinking yourself stupid and laying on the roof all night.” In the human body, if we lack vigor, we truly are lost. The things that keep us still in one context keep us moving in others, and this applies everywhere. Most certainly in the human heart. If you are brave intention, however, and you have invested, then you should not shut yourself coldly out of that self-recognition. This, is the greatness of humanity. If after many hours of triumph, they deem themselves in all ways correct, then they will continue and persist in their way. But if they continue. If they do not see room for improvement, they do not work for improvement. In all lives, there is always room to go up, down, and side-to-side.
“I did that?” Therein lies the debt of the human heart. At which point can you find peace? Where mobility suits you, and you find yourself amused with the station? Or, is it a place of life? Must some be good, and others evil? Is there a standard curve to all of this? Must some find delusion that they are correct, though they are, to common sense, incorrect, and treasonous to the human family? In some society, there must be some of either, or the entire idea is flawed. There must be an imbalance, or the world is lost. We must suffer, and we must struggle. Utopia, if Clayton ever knew the word for what it meant, then it truly was a falsehood. If all men worked for the betterment of humankind, they would not see evils or detriments, for they would all be quite dead in the first place. But if everyone decided to exploit, and become traitors to their species — and become completely lost among their number… all would be lost, and the notion of a slippery slope left far behind. In the dust. The only notes of these civilizations are made in the books of other ones.
“Yes. You’re sober like a… like a sober thing!” The world must have an innate force of good within, and a counterpart. Forces that meet not a single bit of resistance tend to collapse upon themselves. Clayton was sure he would come to see a lot of this in the time being. The artillery banged like a colossal drum, shaking Los Angeles at its ground. Without that cannon, would we have scientists in labor? No, we would have scientists eking out life in communes in the desert. But what is work that is not communicated?
“You mean a judge?” That work is almost, if not completely useless. A man once said to Clayton, that if you keep money in a bank long enough, it will become practically infinite. But, by the time this happens, it will become completely useless. That man was my grandfather. He was something of a freethinker himself. Never treated himself to the mosque — or the church — he even spit and pissed on the citadel in New York. He was a great role model for Clayton. He was a constructive influence that provided that not all of the constructive influences should remain constructed. Some times, it’s just got to burn.
“Who am I to judge if you are a judge? That’s just silly!” First, though, one must be aware that this construct that we’ve built along the endless shelves of our lives… it’s all a ruse. It is just there to keep us aiming for one side of a broken spectrum. Clay-clay and your friends, you’ve got to be good. But really, what is good other than a word to make you feel self-deluded and not attempt mischief?
“Cadence, I’m beginning to see again why I liked you.” Cadence had it. That right thing. You could feel that right thing in a good jazz solo. It was the whimsy between the id and the higher brain, living through the fingers and finding itself higher into the mind, like it was on a mission to dominate. People like this aren’t quite up to speed with the shit they’ve been fed by the status quo, and as a result either dope themselves to death, or lose all contact with reality. The latter is quite dangerous, but quite useful. Leonardo da Vinci was one such. He was a rebel, and he stood for science in an age of theology. The same goes for Galileo Galilee. The problem with this thought is it isn’t self-enacting. You have got to sort the legitimate crazy people from the ones who just get it.
She merely nodded. A crack of lightning and the shout of thunder came. “Come on, it is beautiful outside. We should see my garden!” And there it was. That right thing. Any normally insane person would just as well stay locked up in the sanatorium walls. Any sane person would stay hooked up to their radio and hope that the power — and there it went — did not go out.
“I don’t think I’d like to stay inside where it’s all dark. So, shall we?” Always the perfect gentleman. At least in this place. This was the first real opportunity he had since he woke up, so it fits to call such a thing by such a name. There’s another problem with that too. The scope of reality was different for all of the people… the people who understood, the people who followed, and the people who just didn’t know what the fuck was going on. Excuse Clayton’s language, once again.
In the darkness, everything seems to fade. That’s something to be wary of. The passing of senses, like every thing else. “Stay close…” She spoke in whispers, like she was going to wake something up out shadows. Perhaps she even believed it herself. She had such a way of convincing, as she tried to find his hand, but slowly dragged hers across his chest. Even in the dark, Clayton could see her skin light up like the fires of a sun behind those dreary rain clouds. He caught her hand by the wrist. She was taken aback by his seemed advance. In the dark, the man has the advantage. The advantage of tactile strength, where in the light, they had the advantage of being seemly. In the night, however, man was king.
“I know. You stay close to me.” Stern, but inviting. He stood, bringing her up with him. He stubbed his toe on the coffee table, but he was not in the mood to ruin just that — the mood. In the air, he sniffed, there was hope. Far away, he could feel, like the tenuous shaking of Cadence, that something was afoot. An Equalizer was afoot. And it marched in droves. He could feel it with all of his bones. But he also knew he would have to make a choice. One for his life, and for the lives of many others, including poor Cadence, would be in the balance of not only his, but a select few’s words. In fact, such words were inked upon this very page.
How fun is that? A chautauqua in a chautauqua. The point here is that one must be gentle, but still infirm, even to themselves; a discerning merit scholar to themselves, but a supplicant — ready to adapt at a moment’s notice. Confiding in but a single of these archetypes enforces a rigidity.
Therein lay the writing trap; where you do not know what your work is worth, no matter the perceived (or real) effort. In here, there’s little to say about the style. It is all about the work. You’ve got to realize that you’re right some times but you’re wrong all the other times.
Do not work solely for your own pride; pride in excess is a sin, even in a secular manner. Do not work for the pride or recognition of others, either. Work because there’s a work festering within yourself. You shouldn’t make a work because it’s “hip”, you should make work because the work is what you really love. You don’t do it because you’re proud, you do it because you want to. There’s an unbearable compulsion to make amends to the universe, even if the amends are fictitious.
It doesn’t even matter if you do it for the right reasons.
Point is: You don’t have to be right, just write.