THE BEST OF ALL WORLDS
I do not know the names of local birds. Anonymous, yet there all my life. I am oblivious of the trivia of what little shred of nature is made available to me. More important to me to see how a bird hops, to capture a streaming real-time experience. Anything can be looked up and tallied. Better to experience the poem of it, lazily wonder if it is a sparrow, save this for a future mystery to be solved.
Today an aspect of my best self fought with another aspect of my best self. The cat woke me up at 5, the anonymous birds having signaled dawn. She called outside my door until the irritation of it broke through my threshold of tolerance. Stiff legged, nipples hurting and mentally fogged, I rose to feed her food out of a can. She wanted to play after eating, but I thought first of how my best self thought it good to walk outside in the early morning, and how I’d planned to use the cat as an alarm clock.
Today, every day, I just want to be my best self. I want to give in to excellence. But I think of my body first. Am I hungry, I always think. Then I wonder if this is selfish and obsessive, and if I should deny myself more pleasures in my mouth. I am always focused on them, like a spoiled epicure, like a baby. In this iteration of manufacturing my best self I still realize I am not pure; I think too much about my belly. When I am pure I will eat only for sustenance. Androgyny will be a byproduct of my purity. I will say hi to people on the street and if they don’t say hi back, instead of hurt, I will let it pass through. Maybe I will stop caring when I am pure and without ego. Maybe I will lose gusto. Is the best self a netless butterfly net?
The birds–God’s abstract interface–blur and I do not care that I do not know their names. Taxonomy is vanity unless it is needed for a purpose outside of elevating oneself. Even a sentence is vanity, words, chatter. I will not chatter recklessly because I do not want to be drawn into traps, the hypocritical agreements we make to be polite. I will only show my public eyes, clouded over, impenetrable. That is my policy.
But policies make me sick and rigid. Better to blow out, to forgive and flow spontaneous, like the hi and bye in passing, like sitting with others if a chair is there, like stopping and talking when someone indicates it, perceiving talk with the neighbor as an opportunity for breaking bread rather than as a hurdle to my destination. I let myself down off my bike and into your garden, share a cup of coffee with you.
Gotta blow out. Ego is a burden of compression. Why do I feel the need to produce, to heft myself over? This production is not sustainable. In the future, status will be recognized as sin. The most ethical way to exist is to be lazy and slow and indulge in only what is necessary and fun, like community and the backyard garden. It is good to be outside the consumption of production, to be unemployed, to stop lowering the aquifer.
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I know my factual errors and contradictions. I use them as crucifixions, meditation objects. Scourging shame that purifies. Twigs that titillate the ripples in my puddle. Internally, I tally and sum. Externally, my conclusions are doorless, an uncut block of marble. Thoughts of mulberries tasted multiple ways, harvested and frozen while the actual tree drops them in waste, the wasted bounty a blessing, a superstitious omen. This is my romantic rationalization, my carefree driveby lest I suffer the reality of the vertigo of depreciation, the futility of the bootstrap flightwings of ambition.