The man who fell to earth

I have stopped. Why? That I may begin again? Start “over”? I’m not sure. It’s as if I have led myself out into an open field, alone, and with no instructions, “suspending disbelief” as I continue on, from day to night to day. Is this the culmination of something, or an endless detour? An escaping of what is or a serious reckoning? Can I blame someone, some author of some book somewhere?

Now, everything begins to take on a kind of surreal otherness, people moving in and out of my life as if suddenly revealed phantoms, characters who contain human qualities, me the “observer,” to quote one of the character’s description of me; a character who flashed on the scene with unbridled enthusiasm only to, it appears, disappear, perhaps due to my less than-charming-responses to her obvious overtures. It’s like I’ve lost the skills of how to relate to people beyond a kind of chumminess, my desire for “the other” having evaporated through this life of bumps and bruises, this life marked more and more by uncertainty, willfully so or not.

Am I fit only to love generally, and not too terribly specifically? Am I not capable of loving deeply one person now? And has it always been so? I’m a nice guy. Except when I’m not. For all my time alone, I really wonder how evolved I’ve become. Has it really made any difference, to seek a kind of stillness that, unfortunately, finds me even more alone than ever? Is it not better to throw myself into the busy throng, to let my head run free with scattered thoughts, to embrace the monkey mind after all, embracing the confusion that seems embedded in an overextended life? To jump in, physically as well as emotionally, throwing caution to the wind? Then I remember: I have left a trail of tears on such occasions, regrets crowding out the apparent wisdom learned from such escapades.

Is “pure being” enough? As if I were the only person left on this planet?

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