Friday, November 02, 2007

Thoughts on a Friday night in the ER

In a burst of fury
hotter than the sun
my right fist engages
in a brief
but vicious
bout
with the bathroom door
and the door wins
like Tyson
over Spinks
only much quicker

The exquisite pain
flushes the anger
from my mind
like a burning
bubbling
stream
of peroxide
flushes out infection
and I realize
in a rush of clarity
what a long
long
journey
this
is

10 comments:

Matt K. said...

Oooh. Sorry for you, and your bathroom door. I try to avoid conflicts with hard objects - too often I'm the one who loses (unless I'm using the right tools)!

What triggered the anger?

Mike Cross said...

I can relate to your poem, Michael.

Isn't that part of the joy of a journey undertaken for its own sake -- it leading us to places we never expected it to lead us?

All the best

Michael said...

Oh, indeed, Mike. It's situations like this that often turn out to be the best teachers.

Michael said...

Does the trigger for the anger make a god-damn difference?

wenders said...

I slipped a v. sharp knife into the palm of my left hand while muttering angry thoughts that had no business between my knife and the avocado. The cheerful ER guy was very creative with his suture technique, and four days later got the stitches taken out completely. More triggers for anger. The jig-saw connect-the-dots of my anger mandala is for me worth knowing about, but it will be very difficult to toss (it's all about what's me, what's mine, the way I do it, etc.)
Heal fast, dear Michael.

Michael said...

Many thanks, Wenders ... and thanks for stopping by!

Mike Cross said...

If you are not happy, do something about it -- go shopping, buy a new bed, get a new partner, zap your knees with x-rays as if the root of unhappiness was there. Isn’t that the American way?

EKO HENSHO NO TAIHO O GAKUSU BESHI
“We should learn the backward step of turning light around.”

The backward step. Not always one foot in front of the other.

THE BACKWARD STEP. Master Dogen wrote those words for you, Michael. For relentless fighters like you, for struggling bodhisattvas like you, and me.

Your culture and my culture, American culture and British culture, are built on endgaining. And you and I are an integral part of that corrupt, integrity-sapping approach. We went to Japan in search of another way and, guess what? that culture is also squarely built on endgaining too... white belt, yellow belt, blue belt, brown belt, black belt... sesshin, mondo, Soto-shu... it is all a heap of fake elephantery, and you and I have allowed ourselves to be deceived by it.

If you truly realize what a dupe you have been you should punch your bathroom door even harder, you big sap. You are a bloody fool.

As as said yesterday, I really relate to your poem.

Michael said...

Yes, yes ... it's a long journey, and to hell with the destination.

Mike Cross said...

"To hell with the destination" sounds like an easy get-out clause.

My true destination might be my original state, and the direction that leads me there might be backwards.

I have punched my share of doors, walls and heaboards. Why? Because my habitual direction is a strongly forward one, plodding one foot in front of the other, so that even when I decide to veer backwards I still seem to carry on going forwards, as if trying to prove something, as if trying to get something.

It is a presumption on my part, but reading your poem I feel that you, in your anger and frustration, are totally my brother.

Michael said...

And why wouldn't we be brothers?

I believe that we (collectively) like to use surface differences to kid ourselves into thinking that "I'm me and you're you and never the twain shall meet." But at heart, we're all the same, we're all interconnected.

I believe this even as I continue to make distinctions between "you" and "me" and continue to find ways to find the one exception to this reality. All right, enough ...

As for moving forward, backward or sideways, I don't have a fucking clue what I'm doing. All I can do is hang on.