Underlying Truths, Unvoiced

Lives of quiet desperation, indeed!

Who knows what makes us tick?

Certainly the omnipotent Creator, known as God to most of us

But what about our spouses, lovers, friends, children, parents?

Do any of them have the complete picture, stolen from furtive looks, whispers under covers, secrets revealed, lies unfurled from contradictions we tell ourselves and others?


No, no being in the flesh knows our totality.

So who was there when you thought you were alone, about to pass gas,

in your desk chair, naked, but instead shot loose bowel movement?

No one knows this, until they enter your inner sanctum and spot the permanently stained memory foam desk chair, albeit cleaned up, still ruined…and the chair is $325, so you grapple with will anyone ever see it, and shine the light on a dark alley…


Or the middle-aged workaholic, who cares for all around her, patients, clients, family, but fails to set limits on any of them, thus wearing herself to a wizened nub of a  chewed Tootsie roll lollipop, with long since nothing edible left.

Forgetting the maxim that the caregiver can give nothing when she herself is not cared for, or about. To love is also to discipline those around us. When you don’t value yourself, no one else will either.


Or the secret lover of our dreams, who we keep locked up under the floorboards, or in a hidden closet? Fodder for gossip, he is! Chuckling, far away, unreal, because unraveled, like the shit spot on the desk chair. Only small glimpses afforded publicly.

He is a friend who sends flowers and chocolate and perhaps one single long stem red rose, which lasts for eternity in memory…

Indicating present desire and mystery. She knows if one man is pursuant, others will take a second look.

Secrets are nectar on a hot summer day, sliding down the throat of the parched but still beautiful red rose, who thirsts for her lover. But even he doesn’t get all  of her, because no one should hold the entire set of keys. Keep them guessing, because when everything is known, it is time to die.


Parallel Universe

Pursuit of pleasure

Intensity of thought, making it so

For thought is action in the multiverse.

To think it is to make it happen, but in another galaxy

Far, far away, with our doppelgänger…

But we are encapsulated here, with our own limited mortal existence

Unaware of the other. How freeing, but also how sad, to think all of our thoughts informed another being’s life

Without either knowing one was acting on the other.


Mirror, Mirror; Counterpart; Star Trek: Discovery: all figments of our collective imaginations, thinking we are far more than this shell, housing a soul.

Because we are. We are infinite energy, in infinite combinations, with no limits

As our thoughts become real, but outside of our consciousness. If you wanted that woman, or man, but had him not here, be aware that it happened elsewhere…

Because love is eternal, and transcends even death.


Our mortality is a test to see where we go, post this rotting shell existence.

But at least we are not limited by fleshly concerns, for the spirit is always beautiful, timeless, infinite and wise, and does for the good of all beings, who merit the paradise.

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof: Too Hot to Handle

Big Daddy, Big Mama, Brick, Gooper, Maggie and Mae Politt, 5 brats, assorted support players, preacher and doctor. Tennessee Williams’ masterpiece play, Pulitzer Prize 1955.

Secrets and lies, fodder for dysfunctional family, spare set, single room, with nary a place to sit. Shower head, to drown yourself in denial, and to admire the naked form as well.

Ironic, never admitted, due to the time of this play, because coming out wasn’t even remotely an option then…only option was heterosexual marriage. Even if that meant it was a fling for a try, and then deciding never more. Nope, not for Brick. Maggie is simply out of luck. Like a beautiful black cat, sleek, dying of love and hunger, in a loveless marriage, like a mouse terrified on a glue trap, caught up in the need to not be poor, desperately poor, anymore…because she was wounded mortally from that experience.

Brick drowns his reality in endless drink, from the floor, glasses, whiskey and a bag of ice. Never takes a break to go for a leak: the young have endless bladder capacity….

Gooper is the educated son, a lawyer, with a bitchy wife, Mae, who keeps sticking a sharp finger in the figurative eye of Maggie, for failing to produce children. No kids because hardly any sex, ever…even though she needs it, badly, because she has the misfortune of loving Brick. Any red blooded man would want Maggie: so lovely a cat is she. But Brick doesn’t; he wants to drown himself in drink, nothing more. Disillusionment, thy name is Brick…Almost no words for wife, Big Daddy, Big Mama…They talk up a red streak though, as he is the much favored son, and Gooper knows it, and resents them all for it.

And Big Daddy is sick, then not, then it gets settled which he is. And talk of massive inheritance, $90M, 28,000 acres of Mississippi farm, and big control issues over everybody, by selfish living dad, who has no use for anyone, but Brick, the effervescent drunk. It’s his 65th birthday, with talk of no more after this, macabre. Karma is biting him too.

Study people in desperate life turns, with threats of massive change, like a patriarch dying?? See how they all behave, and what they think, really, about each other, after 40 years of being with one spouse, and hating them, or a mere 4 years, and closing the gates of love, never to return. He wants Maggie to find another lover, to get her the hell off his unwilling, unwanting self.

They strip away the truth, piece by piece. And the nakedness is both literal and figurative. Can anyone really and truly see us as we are? And people who aren’t there, like Skippy, who was far more than anyone on stage, but dead now, and how that affected Brick. Suicide, thy name is love, true love, but with that, Brick dies inside, and begins his own slow suicide, by drunkenness. A click in his head is a blackout. He seeks it daily, to sleep…blissful dreams, in the arms of his true love. Who is beyond reach now.

Big Mama is disrespected and in denial. Lovely dress though, and lines. Mae is intensely disliked by virtue of her superiority, of her fecundity, of continuing the family line, but oblivious that the children of a disliked son are also automatically disliked as well. Gooper is bitter that he is not loved, obviously, and has always been so. He is the only likely one to inherit though, as a rabid drunk is not a good steward, however much he is loved. But pause, as Big Daddy and Big Mama realize, and the lack of progeny, of Brick and Maggie…

I feel comparatively blessed now, with my own family dysfunction. How about you? Maybe being without such a family is comparatively peaceful. Dysfunction, thy name is blackmail….Because when someone needs something quite desperately, they will do anything to get it…And you’d best steer clear of the oncoming juggernaut.


Pick a label, any label of a group historically disenfranchised in the United States of America. What comes up? Blacks, Latinos, Homosexuals, Transgenders, Women, Jews, Muslims, Atheists, the Disabled, name it…And then add in the words “_______________________ are the reason we see our country disintegrating, from the inside out.” Because scapegoating is a tool of the powerful to blame someone else, rather than looking inward, to analyze. What I am about to say is not politically correct, and will inflame people’s opinions, of why we are where we are today, in the USA.

WE are the people, and we collectively rise and fall together. So when we scapegoat one group, name it, any group, we are sowing our own destruction. No one group is responsible for hatred, global warming, war, famine, but when we deny any individual group their Bill of Rights, enshrined in our beloved Constitution, and we victimize and delegitimize individual citizens , when we don’t give them a color blind, equal chance,

WE HAVE SOWED OUR OWN KARMA SEEDS OF DESTRUCTION. WHEN WE DON’T INVEST IN EACH OTHER, VIA EQUAL EDUCATION, DECENT HOUSING, HAVING A VIABLE SAFETY NET, THAT VALUES EVERY SINGLE CITIZEN, we have essentially said that none of us is worth anything, unless we produce money, or work for a company, or work for ourselves. The most important work in the world is actually nurturing the young, and providing good examples.

Columbine, 1999, Colorado. It started then, and continues unabated, mass murders, of children even…Why? Seeds of Destruction include the breakdown of the family, divorce, disenfranchisement, meaning lack of good paying jobs, an equal chance at those jobs, unencumbered by what your appearance is, but merely on whether you are qualified to do that job, lack of children being born in these fractured families, due to lack of that same money, not investing in women’s equal pay, because paying a woman equally to a man means that we value women the same. But here, we don’t, and continue not to, no matter how much we collectively discuss it.

Iceland just passed a law to give women equal pay to men for the same jobs, by 2022. They value their women, and their numbers in the legislature resembles the population count even. Imagine that! And a female President too. What chances for a woman President here? I mean really! Even a principled, intelligent, wealthy woman would face an uphill battle, because of the yin/yang principle. We have an automatic bias against women here, seeing them as a necessary evil, thus the yin principle.

How many women even will vote for a qualified woman, who would step forward, to run for President? We marginalize ourselves even, in hatred and division against our own sisters, when we should stand united against oppression, as we have of late, in the battle against sexual harassment. When we don’t invest in women, WE DON’T INVEST IN OUR OWN HUMANITY!! BECAUSE WOMEN ARE DISPROPORTIONATELY NOW RAISING THE NEXT GENERATIONS, and we have seen in the last 20 years or so, since Columbine, a rise in technology alienation, smaller households, lack of dads, and women who still make about 80 cents to a man’s dollar.

Kids growing up poor, in lousy housing, poor food, because what is on sale in the ghetto? Not healthy fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean meats, no, far from it. It was a nutritional desert where I grew up, and I bear the scars of that, to this day, with attendant sequelae. I wasn’t given that equal chance either, not back then, when my personhood was being formed. And religion was merely a panacea for the masses, of those oppressed, because you needed some hope, and they gave you that. Hope in the NEXT LIFE!

BECAUSE THIS LIFE WAS MANUFACTURED INTO A HELLHOLE FOR ME, and so many others, back then, and now. Black Panther, give us hope! To excel, to be worthy of a good life here, not only in the hereafter. To not do so is a collective failure of our society, and we are in fact already reaping what we have sown, by virtue of damnable prejudice.

JESUS SAID: “LOVE ONE ANOTHER, AS I HAVE LOVED YOU.” Isn’t that the same as this message? If we did, we wouldn’t be where we are, fomenting hatred and division.

Call Me By Your Name, as Allegory

A teenage love story, book to movie, nominated for several Oscars now, just “read” via audiobook, and astounding. How to describe a book that moved you to tears, even though the leads are gay, and the second man is a twenty-something, Oliver, and Elio is the household son, aged 17. So my first reservation is whether an adult and a 17 year old is considered child abuse, but my own inclination is no, it isn’t, being that I know what I was up to when I was 17 myself, at college then. On the edge of adulthood, taking responsibility for self.


Elio is awakened to those intense emotional urges, and doubts, when Oliver comes to his house one summer in Lombardy, Italy, working for Elio’s father, who is a college professor. It is sublime to listen to the narrator, who describes the scenes they frequent, the activities they enjoy, even the preparations of food by the servants in the house. You feel like you are there, in high summer heat, soaking in the countryside…ahhh! Such a setting for young love, and so true to form, with other friends, confusion, flirting, pulling back, saying little, doing even less, then signals shift, and dreams are fulfilled, and the joy of that experience is just searing, taking me back to my own youth as well.


Who can recall the first kiss, the first flirtation, the first touch, and the second, the third? The swims at the beach, far out in the calm waters, in my case, Long Island Sound, Orchard Beach, the Bronx. Or Jones Beach, Long Island…Young lovers, with run arounds of the parents, as they are protective of their daughters especially…Yes, I remember, keenly. Beach clubs even, private places that only allow people in, by membership. Private beaches too.


Elio and Oliver hit me with their love, even though gay love is different, but in its nature, not so different, from the emotions I felt with young men, back then. You had to hide both, and be extraordinarily careful, in what and when you did anything. It was suspect to engage in such things when 17 years old. Yes, I remember, fondly. Men who were there, and still are friends today. But the memories are long ago, and far away, and the doors are closed to those early experiences, for me. We have all moved on, as Oliver has too, by the end of the audiobook. But Elio only has his memories, as I do as well.


And I don’t accept my fate, and never will! Such love should be shared with someone! I am however working on it, however it may be too late, being that this writer is soon 54 years old, far removed from the 17 year old I was. But that girl is still within, spewing hot lava, as a volcano, ready to pounce! Watch out, the burn is still very much there. At least now someone shares my affection, BUT he is far away, and with an unusual kind of job, so it is still solitary lady, with lava flowing, as an allegory anyway….

Surfing Romance

This Valentine’s approaching, he asked for my address

To announce that I was not an e-pen pal merely.

Neither meeting nor even speaking since October 1st,

Over a Star Trek Convention we met in Parsippany NJ.

Three days in a lounge, of 8 of us, paying to be there.

An exclusive experience, meeting each other and the stars,

In 10 minute intervals, glimpse into secret realities.

Then emails, Christmas cards, phone exchanges, numbers only.

No calls. Invitation to another convention, but neither NJ nor Las Vegas, a small one.

Offering admission and air fare. Wow, surprising!

But still unreal, as intangible, and no convention listed online.

But Valentine’s! Something real, indicating I had moved

from a  lady met to a friend to a Valentine.


Does he dream of me? When did I become his object of desire? All we did was chat, in

writing mostly. Eleven years my senior, but smart, authoritative, retired military, and on

television even, once annually, with the POTUS. And he’s mysterious. All pluses.

Hopeful, gratified, but also non-plussed. Riding the wave, no more, no less.

Accept the gift, with thanks. See where it goes, as if there’s plenty of time,

with a teen-ager’s view of life. No pressure, no expectations.


I am a surfer on Waikiki Beach and he is the beautiful koa wood beneath my feet,

supporting me, to shore. Homeward bound, he carries me.


Without his support, I would have been swallowed by the wave. But instead, I rode him

confidently, aware that something fundamental inside of me had changed.

And the sunset, as a metaphor for our beginning, it too was unique and beautiful.

Analysis of “Jungleland,” Bruce Springsteen’s Opus

In an interview on TV which aired about a year ago, after having written his personal memoir, Bruce Springsteen was asked which 5 songs were his favorite Bruce songs, which is hard to do, when you are Bruce, and all your songs come from your very soul, your own life experience. For me, I had to think as a diehard fan, who has only grown in my admiration for this artist, as the time drones on. But I was pleased to have guessed 3 of Bruce’s actual picks from the best songs he has ever written. One was fairly obvious, the track “Born to Run.” But for me, “Jungleland” was a true masterpiece of length, of a story of young love, of the futility of trying to assert control over your own life and love. And Bruce did pick this song, to my delight. We were in agreement on what an amazing song this is, of the search of young love, and the things that get in the way. And in some ways, the song rings true for me too, in the ambivalence of choices made, at tender ages, “as the girl shuts out the bedroom light, in whispers of soft refusal, and surrender…”


Yup, I have a real life tale, at Philadelphia’s now torn down Stadium, when I saw Amnesty International do a mega concert, which had Bruce playing too, one of 5 acts that whole day, with a friend, who came with me, who has since passed away, one year ago. So no one has first hand proof of what happened to me when Bruce opened up with that famous chord that signaled the only dreamt of, long denied, suppressed, screaming from the depths of my soul, where I fell on my knees, hearing “Jungleland,” and truly astonishingly, had an unusual physical reaction, which was only in the realm of fairy dust and spells…it is not to be physically described here, but which remains with me, to my dying day, that reaction I had…Because needed things in the body of a true fan need no real explanation…just believe, and it will come. And that day, it did! Oh my!


And so, in listening, over and over, with a magnificent coda by the immortal Big Man, Clarence Clemons, on a brilliant saxophone solo, making you think about the boy and the girl of the song, with a backdrop of teen rebellion, and the law not far behind, chasing young Bruce, whether in Freehold, NJ, or out on the boardwalks of the shore, with a girl who captured his sweet stony heart, with her soft hair, and pearly whites, running, but not too fast, because she wants to be caught, by him….And the depression of not having the right keys to open the lock, at the right time, he gets and gives what he can, but it seems like not enough…

Because the price is too high. “He winds up wounded, not even dead…” A horrible epitaph of longing unfulfilled, which is kind of like the living death, because death is at least clean, done, no more awareness of what you cannot have, because you lack the key that opens that door. Yes, this song really hits home for me. And the mists of time swirl around you, remembering past loves, and the AGONY and the ECSTASY OF not ever getting what you need, not really want anymore….Because the longing has surpassed that depth, of the “lawman running down Flamingo, chasing the rat, and the barefoot girl…” The metaphors and imagery are beautiful, and yet somber. And they stay with you, forever, wondering if the breath left in the body is enough, to actually catch that boy, who is now long since, a man. And you are long since, also, a woman, who left her heart in a darkly shrouded room, somewhere near Flamingo Road, chasing the dream.