Superhuman

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So, there are no guarantees in life. Since that’s a fact, I gotta tell you. I don’t know if my YouTube video will be up when I need it to be. The internet has been kicking me in the balls over and over again this week.

Doesn’t mean I’m gonna stop trying.

The Darling Bones is on sale still! $7 on Salt + Iron, go cop a copy + read about spooky dudes and a ghost lady.

I have been proud of many things I’ve done over the course of my life. Going to NYC to sing a 9/11 memorial with a number of singers across the country is among the top of the list. Working three jobs and still getting all of my writing and work done is another. For a while, I became used to people telling me that the things I do are amazing, and for all of that “amazing” that I am capable of, I still felt as if there was more I could do. That there was more I could accomplish. I constantly battle within myself, back and forth, knowing that I can accomplish something wonderful and awe-inspiring and yet, somehow I feel as if I haven’t done anything amazing in years. I’ve been struggling to fight against the tide of my life, against the stress or struggle I’ve imposed upon myself and it’s been wearing me down.

Of course, this isn’t going to be a bunch of words explaining why my stress is somehow more important than yours, not at all. I’m here to tell you that it is okay.

It is okay if you feel like you can’t do it all. Sometimes, you just can’t.

I am a master, a legitimately certified master of biting off more than I can chew. I am fantastic at taking on too many tasks and being unable to complete all of them. This is why I am such a rigid planner. My days, when I have my way, at least, result in a perfectly executed schedule of work and play mixed together, with damage done to every giant task I give myself so that I can move forward for the next day.

Of course, life cannot be scheduled. Which is where this blog picks up.

I’ve had a million ideas for various projects and goals I want to reach and in theory, they are perfectly laid out, if I accomplish X task in X time I will have X free time in my day, but the reality of it is life is not nearly that simple.

It’s like socialism, fantastic on paper until you let greedy humans into the mix and everything goes to shit.

So, it’s like capitalism.

My point is this. There is no government institution, no group of kind passersby, no singular human on this planet that has time to do it all. Likewise, it is in your best interest to plan your projects and your goals in a way that allows for you to get everything finished yourself. This may mean you will miss opportunities and ideas will slide by you, but that’s okay. You can always recoup and get them sorted out at a later date. Time is a made up construct for us to run our lives, and in the essence of doing anything important to you, you’ll need to understand when to abuse your time and when to slip out of time-keeping altogether. I’ve said for some time that I have control over time. Of course, it’s silly. No one controls time, but I was told that once. A friend I used to work with said that it felt as if I had control over time, I could speed it up and slow it down as I saw fit. Time with me always lasted exactly as long as it needed to and I loved it.

So I used it, I started to build into that philosophy and I have harnessed that power since then.

We all have small powers, just like that. Of course, no one can control time, but just that tiny thought, the idea that you can change how time flows only based on your perception of time, doesn’t that make you just a little bit superhuman?

I’m sure you have an ability like that too. Maybe a great big mouth so that you never take a bite bigger than you can chew, maybe you have fast hands or legs, maybe your smile is luminescent. Maybe, just maybe, despite all the stress and all of the struggle we face that blinds us to our own realities, we have a power hidden beneath it all.

Mine just so happens to be time. I know how I can make time for everything, I just need to commit to making that time.

Of course, I could be wrong, I’ve been wrong before, but until I am proven differently I’m going to continue believing that you, me and everyone we know has the potential to be superhuman.

That’s just how it is.

Find your power, harness it.

Don’t let anything stop you.

www.linmtba.com

Congratulations.

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Happy  Birthday to everyone today, mine is coming up soon + in celebration, my book, The Darling Bones is on sale all month! check out the sweet deal here + pick it up, enjoy it, and then keep coming back. I have some more sweet stuff on the way later this month!

The desire to overcome punishing weather in the midst of a devastating storm sometimes feels like a quiet whisper in the middle of a concert hall.

Congratulations.

If you woke up this morning, congratulations on another day. I’m happy you’re here. I am happy you’re alive. Whether you might regard yourself as an enemy to me is of no consequence. I have no enemies. Sometimes we face new days with great trepidation, fortunately for you + I the world will find us at our lowest points and try to beat the hair from our heads.

There are absolutely no guarantees in the world we live in. One day I am going to disappear and most people probably won’t really care. I will be surrounded by laughter and love and peace.

I admit that peace has lately been a distant bird, singing somewhere in another forest but I can hear it gently chirping. If that is all I find in this life, I know I will have peace. I will take it for myself in the quiet moments, in the whispers, in the thunder, in the fire and famine, I will remember the song of that small bird.

I hope that today you consider something, you exist and there is little reason for that existence. Which is wonderful, because it means something.

Should your heart be beating today and your eyes scanning these words, you can surely say that you have been blessed with life and with purpose. No matter the season you are sensing at this moment, winter winds or spring bloom you are still alive to see it all. The world will always revolve and you can take that peace to heart.

This season will end, be it good or bad. I take it to heart that I have much to be congratulated on. As much as you do, you know.

If your relationship just ended, congratulations.

If you’ve just had a baby, congratulations.

If your job just fired you, congratulations.

If you just started your job, congratulations.

If you lost your phone, congratulations.

If you just quit smoking, congratulations.

If you have a few days left to find a home, congratulations.

If you woke up this morning, congratulations.

Congratulations, because every single day, you are allowed a new life. Everything that has plagued you, or burned you, or burdened you for years will be gone in a moment. You will have time to start over, it might take work, it might take time, but you can always rebuild anything you have. Just remember, congratulations, for feeling the way you do today.

It means you are alive and there is nothing to be more thankful for than that.

Broken Teeth (Poem)

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This month, all month, I am celebrating my birthday! In doing so, I’d like to announce that my novel THE DARLING BONES is currently discounted on my website! Pick up a signed copy for $7 now thru Mar. 31st!

Keep checking back at the blog, my youtube channel, and my various social media pages for more sales, more stuff and more writing all the time.

I love yall, happy birthday from the Polar Bear King.

I’ve enjoyed E. E. Cummings for a large portion of my life, his poetry attracted me at a young age because it was so weird. The structure was thrown out, the rhyme and meter often differed. He was one of my first large inspirations after Poe when I was a boy. I’ve always enjoyed playing around with the strange poetry, my last experiment was in the Pollyanna series, which I’ll be re-releasing later on… but more on that in the future.

For now, e n j o y.

Let’s talk about E.E. Cummings today, too.

2018.3.7- Broken Teeth

www.linmtba.com

The Somnambulist (Poem)

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This month I’ve started a new project, the Word of the Week! In which I will try to use this word in correlation with the blog post + have a bit of fun with the blog. It won’t always match up, but I figure, I wanted to mix things up for a while. This week’s word, the first of those on my list is:

Somnambulism.

According to Dictionary.com, it originated likely somewhere between 1790-1800, it is defined as sleepwalking. I found out about it from a band I listen to named Thank You, Scientist. They have a song of the same name and I loved how it sounded, you know how you just appreciate the way some words sound?

Well. I definitely do. I’ll be sharing some of my favorites with you along the way. I promise, not all of them will be real words, either. The poem today is based on the feeling the word gave to me. I’ve been trying to draw inspiration from some of my favorite writers lately as well. Whitman, Poe, Frost and more. This one may be a bit tongue in cheek but you know, I appreciate it greatly.

2018.2.28- The Somnambulist.jpg

www.linmtba.com

Two to One

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Back in the day, there was a Greek myth about Zeus creating man, how we were originally built with four arms and legs, two heads and so on, but fearing our power he split us into two pieces, cursing us to forever search for our other half as punishment evidently for being cooler than a God.

I’ve used this myth before in a few places, a best man toast, a couple other blog posts, and in day to day conversation with others generally speaking to them about relationship troubles and the purpose of relationships. While I can’t accredit this myths factuality to anything in particular. I’m saying that I don’t have the answer to whether this was true or if it was some made up social media post about people to be inspiring.

What I can talk about is the message sent here.

In counting all of the human’s attributes, they glossed over something much more important to the facets of a relationship.

We were born with two ears and one mouth.

Which means that in all things we do, we should use those ears more than we should use our mouths. All too often I find myself more willing to speak on things and tell others about my life, or how to fix their problems when the reality of the situation is that I should be silent and listening, valuing their time much more than I should be valuing my own. Even as I write this I can think of moments within the past two days in which I should have been listening to others and not talking over them. It isn’t intentional, I believe I have important things to say.

Of course, that is the root of the problem then, isn’t it? We each believe that what we have to say is valuable and others need to hear it. Yet, the information we have that needs to be conveyed will still be there at the end of a conversation and we must be delicate in framing what we respond with.

Have you ever been speaking with someone and zoned out, forgetting or not listening to what it is that they’ve said. I tell others often that when I’m working I don’t want to be bothered. If I am in my office writing or doing some other task, I can’t be bothered because if I am I won’t be able to regain my focus. This has led to more than one scenario involving someone I care about feeling as if I don’t listen to them when they are speaking. I wanted to argue this point here and explain that I had set up a time to work and a time to relax, if that can’t be followed what is the point of setting those things up? So on and so forth, but it shurks the actual responsibility of my friendship or relationship to ignore them through and through. It takes the issue I am writing about and turns it into a me issue, an excuse, not a them issue.

Should we consider ourselves a higher caste than another we would know that they would have no need to speak to us? There is nothing they could say that we wouldn’t already know, there is nothing they have to say that would bear any weight. We would be above them. This is the mentality of someone who chooses not to listen to another human for their own selfish needs. I’m not saying that there won’t be times where people will say things completely irrelevant or unnecessary to you but that doesn’t mean every word out of their mouth is spoken without purpose.

The fine details of our lives are spoken through the subtext of our actions and words, we convey how we truly feel or think through the way we speak and how we behave. It is much like knowing someone is upset because of the way they tell you they are upset. They could not admit anything and you would still know because there is a sorrowful lilt to the way they say it.

This is the purpose of our ears. Two mechanisms affixed to the sides of our skulls so that we may hear. We may hear the way others love. We may hear the way others hurt. We may hear others flashes of joy and excitement through their tone, despite the words coming from their mouths. We should be doing this twice as often as we speak, as well. Not everyone will come to understand this idea. There are people in droves who believe the things they say are really important and should be heard by everyone and that is okay, some people are just more important than us. Some people don’t have the desire to listen and understand or listen to feel.

Sometimes, though it frustrates me to no end, this even includes me. I know, hilarious right? The author admitting that sometimes he gets talking a bit too much. You’d think the downsides of my profession would inherently be something much less obvious.

Today, I challenge you to listen to another. Find something within them that is worth hearing, worth considering, listen twice as much as you speak and really devour the things you hear. Especially what you hear between the words and the sounds of the trees or rivers or cities. This world is rife with sounds of life and that is the most powerful notion I have felt in a long time.

We are here, we are alive. We will be gone one day and on my tombstone I’d like it to say something like, he spoke often, he spoke well + good, but the testament to the man buried in this ground is that he was able to listen through your words and hear the feelings you felt, the things you were afraid or embarrassed to say and he helped us bring them out.

True Cleric

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I do what I do to help others. I know that not everyone needs what I have to offer, but someone, somewhere does.

As long as I can remember I’ve been a person that my friends come to for advice or help, for a laugh or for comfort. I have been a healer for as long as I remember playing this game, and because of that I have been witness to some terrible things. The world is a mean and rotten place sometimes, the shadows behind us can grow and become bigger than we ever thought they would, but there is still a glimmer of hope.

Shadows only grow when the light is brighter.

I bring this to you today, because I was scrolling through Twitter on a break from work and I saw someone I’ve followed for a couple years who I never really speak to tweet to their followers:

“The worst feeling is when you give all of your healing soul to someone and they take that from you.”

“I have a healing soul, it is my nature, but when I need healing, where is everyone else?”

“That’s all I’m saying, the people who heal you are broken too. I want to be healed.”

I was caught off guard initially by the series of tweets because it sounded like something between a cry for help and a cry for attention.

So I thought I’d do what I do best and talk about it today.

I will never tell you that there are people out there who don’t need encouragement or help or healing. We all find ourselves in times of distress or fear or whatever other damaging moment that life sends to you. We all have moments to shine and we all need moments to recover, but there has been this growing notion recently about people. It started with “Old Souls” and has grown to be so much more than that. Before I get into the hook here, I want to be clear with you, reader, I have been guilty of the very thing I am here to discuss. I am no stranger to the desire for attention and help. I need it just as much as the rest of us do, but that doesn’t change one important thing about our lives.

If your purpose is to heal, then you will heal. It is your purpose.

Explicitly and divinely appointed to your heart are the desire and the necessary tools needed to have a healing spirit. That being said, we have grown lazy in our interpretation of healing. The kindness that so many of us spend on one another has become a game of who can catch up faster. Social Media posts riddled with self-aggrandizing images of us helping the homeless or standing alongside a burn victim who we brought to the hospital, the stink in our heart of our desire to help and to heal has been infected with a more powerful urge to be noticed for the things that we do. I can be accused of this as well, even in some moments bragging about the kindness I share on this very blog, where two years later I disavowed those things I said, or rather, the way I said them.

There rests a fine plane between kindness and healing for the sake of purpose and doing it for the sake of attention and I’ve seen that when we say things in the vein of “Look at what I did today.” Or “Why is it that I give my all to help others, yet when I need help no one is there?” it tends to come from a place of attention hungry infection, not true healing or hope.

If we are designed to be healing spirits, why then, would we seek to do anything outside of our original purpose? If what we say is true, we are healers for the sake of being healers, why would we seek retribution or payment for simply acting out of our base instinct?

We wouldn’t.

Unless of course, we were maligned by infection of some sort.

In as much the same way we seek approval from our peers for marital, athletic or creative success, we have ventured into seeking that same approval from genuine actions such as empathy and kindness. There should be no payment due for healing given. We are not doctors. We are Clerics. We are healers and we should expect nothing in return for what we do.

Healers are, at their core, people who are capable of indescribable love. Sometimes I doubt that it is my own purpose, but I am trying to remember that I know what I should be doing. I’m trying to remember that I know where I should go. I will remember + I hope you all do as well…

There is no return payment on love.

True Blue + Black

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In the event of a collision, brace yourself on the nearest passion or friend or purpose and hold on.

Nothing can destroy you.

Often times I am reminded of the steadfast and stalwart parents who raised me. Parents who looked the biggest struggles of their lives eye to eye and refused to blink in a way that often I don’t think I could do. That being said, my family is 100% the reason I am the same way today.

Of course, like everyone there are moments when I am faced with something that pulls at my soul in a way I never want to feel and I will feel the sliver of shivers run through my bones but that does not change something integral about my personality.

Something my mother and father both instilled in me from a young age.

Once, I locked myself out of the house in the middle of winter. My parents were visiting friends and though I had gone into my room. So they locked the door behind me as I went about my snow angel business. When I was finished freezing in the snow banks in our front yard I went to go back inside and found that the door wouldn’t open. I pounded on it and called for my parents or their friends, praying that I’d be heard and they would hear me.

They didn’t. I was terrified, and when the realization set in that I was likely going to die out in my yard I took things into my own hands and decided to make an attempt to get back inside. Eventually, I knew my parents friends would leave. So I hopped the fence to the front yard and met the garage door and the front door, pounding on them until my hands bruised. I sat there like that for a while until eventually those inside came up from the basement to let me inside. Turns out they had been in the basement and couldn’t hear me calling them.

As you can see, this story doesn’t necessarily end with me getting out of a sticky situation myself. It’s true, I relied on my parents then but I am older now, though still relying on them for much more than I’d like, I also know that there are things in my life that I will not have them behind me for. So, it is in these moments where I should think of the possibilities… what happens when we don’t have those who regularly support us there to lift us up anymore?

We should take our problems by the throat into our own bruised hands.

Choke those demons in front of you and throw them away.

Of course it won’t always be easy, but everything can be broken into smaller projects. Everything can be taken down to the small grains of sand that collected together to form a stone. It took super heat and energy but eventually every new diamond emerges from its old shell of coal.

I lost my job in the fall.

I was denied for something like nine jobs I had applied to, the rest beyond the nine rejections simply didn’t reply to my application.

I didn’t write a single successful piece for any of the writing anthologies I had taken.

I was faced with the massive challenge of picking up at perhaps the lowest point of 2017. I didn’t let on much that I was struggling so hard but I was. This year ended in a whirlwind of extreme joy and immense pressure.

I wonder what other material shares the same qualities, bringing extreme joy and enduring immense pressure.

Diamond.

Every event we are faced with demands a solution. Every problem and every scenario has an ending, it is up to us to determine where that ending lies and how we will get to it.

This brings me back to my parents, who, although occasionally frustrating, each of them made certain that this concept was chiseled into my memory with not one stroke misaligned.

My dad would regularly tell me I needed to get into a stable career, something to make sure I had the money I needed to do the things that I wanted. Of course, at the time I blew off this notion. It didn’t matter then what I did or how I did it. I would find a way. Of course that is still true today, but I’ve discovered that there is another step.

Find something you love.

We all need work. We all have a passion and a skill. No one can truly float along life without money, as much as it frustrates me that we base our entire lives around the mental weight of green paper we must obtain it to continue living. There will always be a way to make money, and money will always have a purpose. Of course, money doesn’t necessarily mean bills and coins. It could be gold or supplies. There will always be a use for some sort of tender, some sort of item that we can trade around.

This concept was lost on me until I grew up a bit and started working, finding a job that I loved. The food industry. I ate up every shift I was given, bathing in the joy of cooking or bartending, absorbing every interaction with customers good or bad. Some days I needed to vent, but that is a part of life. It is another one of those struggles I was always told about. My dad’s words were much more important than I first realized, and they still held a meaning that I hadn’t gleaned as I grew older. A job is not just a place to be for a few hours. It isn’t just a way to make a living. Since I started working in restaurants I have had a desire to do nothing but that while I write. Cooking, baking, serving, all of the things involving food appeal to me. It makes me happy on a base level.

Still, the point of what pops told me so many times was that it was a stepping stone. If I had that outlet, that passion, that place to go to do something I loved, it would help me face down bigger challenges I would eventually face. The same can be said for most things. If you have something you are passionate about, please, right now I urge you to go commit to it. Draw yourself into the loop of that passion. Woodworking, reading, writing, art, making YouTube videos. Whatever it is. Dentistry, coding, marketing, business management, sewage containment. Everyone has a purpose and a joy to be fulfilled in their working life and too few are able to do it successfully. Embrace that thing and go for it, full speed ahead. Challenges will come, you must face them. It is nice to have an island of sanctuary when you need it.

My mother, on the other hand always told me to finish what I started. I once joined the youth soccer team and I absolutely hated it. I was chubby and didn’t like to run. I wasn’t good at soccer and so I stood on the field for most of my play time. I picked my nose and watched the ball go back and forth as it came close to me and rolled away. I came home one evening begging to quit because I hated it so much, but mom told me no. I started it, I needed to finish it.

Eventually the season was over and I didn’t sign up again, but I learned something valuable. Things are always in motion. I played defense, which was remarkable because I was so poor at defending. It’s hard to focus on kicking the ball when you have your finger in your brain stem. Still, things moved. That soccer ball moved, your obstacles will move. You will be able to progress and you will be able to take knowledge from each moment you live.

Those things have been instilled in me since I was just a boy, and I will never forget them.

When things become difficult, when faced with something insurmountable remember that you are not Atlas. You are not a god. You are a man, and man has something remarkable about him.

We don’t give up.

So don’t give up.

Take your bruised hands and start to push. If pushing doesn’t work, kick. If that fails, find a new path. There will always be a way around. There will always be a way out. There will always be a new obstacle and there will always,

Always,

Be a way for you to overcome it.

All you have to do is start moving.

www.linmtba.com