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Jul. 6th, 2011

On Metaphysics, Midnights, and Explosions in the Sky

Sitting beside the lake at night, I can write many words.
Words like

And for the first time in my life,
I understand what they mean.
That's the kind of beauty I'm experiencing.
The kind that offers meaning to words that
otherwise are misused and misunderstood.

I stare up at the heavens.
The sky.
The stars.
Whatever you want to call it.
And I feel a truth,
One stronger than any other;

I will never possess the ability
To comprehend what I am looking at.
I chose those words carefully; I'm not seeing
The stars, glittering sequins in the obsidian canvas hung high above us.
No, their light, traveling trillions of miles, finds no solace in my eyes.
It has come all this way hoping, perhaps, to be more than seen.
To be processed.
But my eyes are mirrors.
They reflect the light outward, sending it away,
In hopes that someone else will understand,
Grasp the threads of realization that slip
Through my fingers like so many grains of sand
In the desert of my mind.

I don't think the light will ever know that reality,
ever have that desire realized.

And perhaps it was never meant to.
Perhaps the light is just passing through
Our consciousness, as well as our atmosphere,
On its way from one somewhere to another,
Merely gracing me with its presence momentarily
Before continuing on its path,
A journey that has lasted millions of years
And will last millions more.

Out here beside the lake, I can write many words.
But none of them mean a thing
Until I look to the night sky.

Feb. 7th, 2011

The World, Or: "The World"

Have you ever stood on the roof of a very tall building?
Gazing upon the world, the people and the places, the sights and the sounds, the everyday life you normally inhabit?
All of this, spread before you like a tapestry of sorts, a patchwork quilt of infinite stitches?
And from the top of that building, have you ever released a balloon?
Watched the helium-filled sphere float into the deep blue sky as the string passes through your unclenched fingers?
If you have,
You're a god damned penguin murderer!

And this was pointless.
That was pointless.
Those was (were) pointless.
People don't read this anyway, but I do like having some semblance of order and intelligence.
It's a personal goal, really.

The world is a scary place.
People fall in and out of love.
People are born. People die.
Think about it. There are only two times that you're expected to wear your absolute finest clothing.
Weddings and funerals.
Why do we set so much stock in these ceremonies of utter finality?
Why is it that we have to wear thousand dollar dresses and exorbitantly priced suits to do something as seemingly simple and utterly beautiful as joining ourselves to the one we love?
Shouldn't that love speak for itself?
And if somebody told me that at my funeral everyone would be wearing black and sobbing their eyes out, I would slap them.
Funerals should be celebrations of life, not mournings of death. It's a tragic fact that we all must leave the earth someday. But why should we sit and be depressed about the loss? Of course it's terrible! Of course they will be missed! But remember that time she accidentally poured pudding in the fish tank? Or that terrible vacation he took and the even worse sunburn he came back with? Why should the sadness be the prevailing topic? Remember them as they were in life; they can never again be that way after death.

"She packed my bags last night, pre-flight. Zero hour, 9 AM"

Jan. 22nd, 2011

Living, and the Reasons behind it.

Back again, back again; here we are, back again.
That might be a song.
Within the confines of my mind, it already is.
It's already been cut, recorded, re-recorded, produced, mixed, hyped, pressed, released, and loved by millions.
It's entered the charts, fought its way to the top, and overthrown the reigning number one to be the most popular song in the world, before exiting in much the same fashion and at just as quick a speed. Maybe it made a temporary resurgence when Spielberg featured it in the latest effects-heavy, intelligence-light blockbuster, like a momentary blip on the radar that is the popular conscience writ large. Written off as a glitch in the system and dismissed soon thereafter.
It's been featured on best-of lists, highlighted during music countdown specials, maybe even played in the background of a few reality shows, as an endless parade of faceless contestants fight tooth and nail to determine who can shed all sense of dignity the fastest, a sweeping sonic backdrop to the less than cinematic car crash that millions just can't turn away from.
...Again, this is all just in my head.
That's the great thing about the mind; whatever you imagine, is real in there. Because imagination is the mind's reality. Which, I suppose, makes reality all but imaginary. In your mind, that is. Conundrums abound, eh?
Back to the present, or perhaps the future. I guess the present is always the past's future.
And once again, my brain runs wild.
"Quick!" the young man in the orange jumpsuit shouted. "Get me the Advil!"
"But," Jeffery responded, "That song can only exist in your mind! What will the medication do..."
I was cut off, clearly, as clouds covered the crowded cul-de-sac, carrying with them the haunting, grandiose echoes of something beautiful.
Picture. It.
Beauty on such a level as to create a palpable, physical ache within you, deeper than your tingling skin, deeper than your pulsing blood, deeper than your pounding heart; on such a level as to touch and enhance the innermost workings of your soul.
Level 2! Bounce mothafucka bounce mothafucka BOUNCE.
Gadzooks! Pending a doctor's visit, this post may be diagnosed with level IV bi polar bear disorder. Or at the very least, a mild case of the Malapropisms.
Thinking this a good a time as any (time being nothing more than a manageable, linear way to view every moment that ever has or will exist) I decided to speak, throwing myself like a verbal spelunker into the cavernous silence of stalled conversation.
And I think. We can finish now. I didn't really fancy this having any sort of conventional "end".
In my mind's eye (the reality of the imagination), I start to talk about a familial history of Alzheimer's and then

Jan. 17th, 2011

Ride On...

    Watch a train ride by. It’s not really a complicated or uncommon occurrence. The fact that I possess a certain, undefinable infatuation with these metal behemoths – and the reasoning behind this intrigue – could probably be described as exactly the opposite. I’ve never really been able to explain it, and I’ve never met anyone who quite shares my feelings on the matter. “It’s just a glorified truck convoy,” someone might say. Or maybe, “Drive a car!” But these nameless train decriers just don’t understand.
    They’ve probably never felt the earth beneath their feet rattle and shake, the ground mobile from the sheer power of what’s approaching just down the tracks. They’ve probably never closed their eyes and heard the hiss of the steam, the click-clack, click-clack of wheels upon steel. They’ve certainly never let themselves fly high above the earth, followed a set of train tracks as they snake across the landscape, fluid as a meandering river. Tracks that cut through mountain ranges, bridge gorges and dive into man-made tunnels of bedrock where trains chatter without fear through darkness, never slowing as they emerge unscathed on the other side.
    Have you ever been sitting up late at night, perhaps on a screened-in porch on a balmy summer evening, and heard the low drone of a train’s whistle cutting through the still of the night? Wondering, “Where is that train? Where is it going? Why?” Trains call up thoughts of a different time. A time when what mattered weren’t the beginning and end points on a journey, but instead the journey itself. Not where you were going, just the fact that you were going at all. In a world of the instantaneous, of high speed this and on demand that, a train seems out of place. A relic, even.
    But that’s not how I see it. When everything happens without hesitation, with no wait, at the highest possible speed...you miss out. How can you see an explosion of daisies blossoming on a sun-soaked hill from the confines of an airplane? Will ordering a movie directly to your TV compare to the countless worlds you can see out your four by six window riding the rails? You can’t really live your life to its fullest when you’re moving too fast to see anything.
    Watch a train ride by. Maybe you’ll see what I mean.

Jan. 16th, 2011

Chaotic Clarity

I had a moment.
At this point I'll just call it the moment.
The moment where, despite every single thing swirling around me like I'm Dorothy in that damn twister...
I am okay.
I mean, really, I'm not okay. I just killed a lady with my house, Toto probably has whiplash and I'm definitely not in Kansas anymore.
But when you've gotten this low, the only real way to go is up. Thank you very much, kind witch. I would love to take that dead girl's shoes.

First Law of Holes: "If you're in a hole, stop digging!"
I don't know much about the ins and outs of the shovel-bound legal system, but I do know this;
The deeper the hole, the harder it is to climb out. I saw that movie with Shia LaBeouf. I know these things.
It's reached the point where there are no clear paths. All the roads are overgrown, full of potholes, their endpoints, even their routes uncertain.
Treacherous mountains, yawning canyons and raging rivers may very well lay just around the bend. I just don't know, and unfortunately I've misplaced my Garmin.
But the pioneers got to Oregon somehow; even with all odds stacked against them, with their consistent inability to ford even the shallowest of rivers and the maddening disparity between the amount of meat they shot and the amount they could carry back to their wagons...they did it, and they did it with little help (maybe it was the cheap ass bullets).

I know now that there is no GPS. There is no road map to the heart of the one you love. And just because you possess that love doesn't mean she reciprocates it in turn. Learning that the hard way has been miserable, but that same sadness is what also gives me hope. I've dealt with the misery for weeks; now that the bucket is scraping the bottom of the well, it's time to start ratcheting the rope back up the shaft. We can't afford to spill much water though; there's precious little in there right now as it is. So, baby steps. Inch, by inch, by inch, the rope will come up. Inch by inch, that bucket will get closer to the surface. Inch by inch, I'll get closer to you. Is the rope frayed? Sure. Is the water going to slosh around? Probably. Could the bucket slip? Fall? Tip? Absolutely.

Thing is, the top of the well is where we all wanna be. Just sitting back, lazing idly next to the hand crank and just hoping the bucket will bring itself up to you is a plan that, while safe, is liable to see you die of thirst. You can only do nothing for so long. At the end of the day, you have to do something, take a chance, or you'll never drink from the bucket again. Of course you're risking dropping the bucket, losing it for good. But it's one of those Keanu Reeves, Speed bus driving things; some risks just have to be taken. Cuz without taking the risk, you'll never get that bucket out of that well. Or get Sandra Bullock to commit to a godawful sequel.

So here goes. I've laid down my shovel. I've thrown aside my helmet and gloves. This hole shall grow no deeper. It's time to start climbing. Start pulling the water out of the well. Like learning to walk for the first time, it may be back to square one. But, when love is involved, it's much better to start from scratch and refill the hole then to walk away and never again drink from that deepest of wells.



    Skyler always used to tell me there was no substitute for pure heroin. He told me all the time. About the only thing he told me more was that yes, Skyler could be a boy's name, and that he cursed his parents every day for saddling him with it. I pictured a horse being prepped for a race.
    The heroin is best out west, he would say, out where the gap between manufacture and consumption was lessened and the narcs were less active, places like San Fran and Carson City and Vegas. We always had a particular desire to go to Las Vegas; out of some perverse notions or some innate, ingrained sense of purpose, I was never sure which it was. Or if it was neither.
    But Skyler would rationalize it. It wasn't about the trip he said – in any sense of the word. It was for the experience. He used that word a lot too. Experience. Experience the ride. Live the experience. Experiences define our existence.
    When he wasn't talking – or sometimes when he was – he was shooting. The needle, in the crook of his arm, sliding smoother than a child's foot into freshly fallen snow through his pockmarked skin and into his veins, the blood that pulsed and raced like a raging river whisking the perfect poison off to his legs and his arms and his heart and eventually his brain. I guess it was how I got into the stuff.
    Not to discount the weed I had smoked. Or the times I had snorted that angel dust shit. Always off coffee-stained glass endtables in dim apartments lit by the harshness of bare bulbs, my cheek sliding where I knew so many had before and where I knew so many would follow. Eventually I would return and restart the cycle of nameless faces, my cheek pressed for that briefest of moments to the perpetual coolness of the glass. My breath would fog the table, and I imagined myself on a train, winding through the evergreens in some far off mountain range, snow-capped peaks obscured until I wiped away the condensation to reveal the green shag carpeting, littered with spent cigarette butts and stains of ubiquitous origin.
    Those experiences may indeed have preluded my forays with needles. But it was Skyler who had eased my trepidations. Skyler who spoke of the takeoff, the freedom, the euphoria. Skyler who cooed “Experience defines our existence.”
    And so I had started. I don’t remember my first. It wasn’t special, I guess; my brain thought too little of it to form any distinct memories. Last Tuesday was my birthday, so that would make it six...no seven, seven months since that intangible first night. The night, Skyler later told me, I had been given wings. My memory returns to me in spots, so I remember some experiences with striking clarity.

    I remember the eight ball Skyler had scored from an old Rikers cellmate.

    I remember the roach we had laced with heroin – colloquially an “atom bomb,” Skyler had informed me.

    I remember deals that went well; an extra gram here, an undercharging dealer there.

    And I remember the sheer terror of deals gone south. The feeling of my lungs, devoid of air as I begged them not to collapse for just a few more seconds, a few more revolutions of my legs, feet pounding on the pavement, blood pounding in my ears. Not knowing if Skyler had made it. Not knowing how we didn’t make the dealer as a narc. Not knowing how this had become my life, living paycheck to paycheck, high to high, the bungie cord straining further as the highs got higher, the lows lower.

I remember my OD.


    Skyler almost never talked about it. Like when someone has a rare, incurable disease and everyone around them shies away from topics like death and dying. And on the rare occasions anything is brought up, they use safe euphemisms. “The fight.” “A lump.” “Therapy.” Skyler’s favorite was “the accident.” I don’t think he couldn’t bring himself to say anymore than that. Maybe it was the thought of the white coats and the sterile room and the IVs, countless wires trailing like tendrils, extensions of my body, from every part of me. These things just didn’t rest well with him.
    I can still see him there with me; the busyness of the place rushing around us both as he sat next to my upright bed, his eyes glazed over as they looked into mine while his hand removed the rubber band wrapped tight around his bicep.
    Skyler hated hospitals.


    I was high, above the Earth and all the people that lived there. No one could touch me, or at least, no one could find me. I’ve never been able to explain it. The words, to my knowledge, don’t quite exist. At least not in the sense that you would think words exist. In an ethereal sense, maybe. More ideas, incoherent thoughts; if your mind can wrap itself around them and get them to formulate in your vocal chords and off your tongue, maybe it would make sense.
    Then I was somewhere.
    Somewhere else.
    It was a dark place. The edges of it all seemed to fade away into blurred blackness. I could see the footprints in the snow, every step of every traveller frozen like the ice that hung from the bare tree branches above my head. All these journeys, taking place within the same instant, albeit a different instant than the one I was inhabiting. Somewhere, in the back of the space where my mind belonged, I wondered, Wordsworth-like, about the owners of those tracks. The thought passed. Snow fell around me. Wind whisked it across the ground and through the trees.
    This world I was in was...beautiful. Beautiful; a word I used about as often as Skyler did “overdose.” But there was no other adjective that could have been more fitting. He would have liked to be here, Skyler would. For the experience, more than anything.

    “Get him into OR six! Shit! He’s coding...Someone get the god damned defib!”

    I sat down. Dragging my fingers through the snow, no temperature registered. It could easily have been the sands of a tropical beach. The wind slid across my skin, tracing the contours of the goosebumps that dotted my bare arms.

    “Get that shirt off him now! Jesus, he must have laid out there for hours. Look at this frostbite!”

    I stretched my arms skyward. Or at least towards what my mind and my sense of gravity perceived to be the sky. Nothing really held bearing. The snow wasn’t called snow, the sky held no real name, nor the trees or the wind or the darkness. Everything was vibration, feeling; pulses of ideas more than fixed existence. I let the idea of snow, which was now rain, hit my face, my chest, my back. I was

    “This is textbook overdose. It’s forty degrees in here and he’s sweating like a pig in a sauna. Heroin. Must be

    Free. Freer than I had ever been. The tethers that always held my body, chained my soul, limited my every movement; gone. The darkness began to recede. I could feel something. Something...

    “My god his heart rate is a steady two ninety...he’s gonna have a heart attack. Shit! Get those straps back on his arms and legs. He’s convulsing too much! Do it before he kills someone! Someone...

    Warm? No...but bright. Like a star, a light in space, getting brighter as it approached. Skyler had mentioned this type of thing once. Not the snow. Or the rain. Or this place. He had told me


He had told me

    “Son...can you hear me?”

He had told me

    “If you can hear me, look into the

He had told me about the

    “light. If you can hear my voice, just look right into the light.”

He had told me about the light.
    I blinked.
    “Thank God. You’re one lucky son of a bitch, you know that kid?”
    Our existence is defined by experiences.

May. 30th, 2010

Reasons We Live

I suppose with a title such as this you are expecting nothing less than pure, unadulterated profoundity.
And i suppose i would be a total asshole to give you anything less...
Isn't it funny how on tv (young person slang for "tele-vision") they edit out the "hole" part of "asshole"?
I totally thought that ass was the bad word. but apparently not...
Profound, right?
Mmmmm, smell that fresh pine as it hits your nostrils. Guinea pig bedding, as it were. It smells quite delicious, not unlike a fresh coating of pine needles that softly blanket the dry ground beneath the trees they were blown from in the chilly autumn wind. The man turned to his companion, and without taking his hand off the trigger of his gun he softly asked, "Which one do you want?" "Neither," the short-statured woman replied, "You know my feelings on the issue. But seeing as Patterson ain't givin' us a fuckin' choice, i suppose the one on the right. I do hate the Chinese."
Two silenced shots. Two spent rounds hitting soft earth. Two necks broken by the sheer force of the bullet. Two limp bodies fallen to the ground. "Two confirmed kills."
And the deepness rolls on?
And on and on and on and on...
Sniff a Sharpie sharply, singing softly songs of sinful sexual sadism.
The S's have it, that was a wild sentence.
Alliteration abound...an awesomely affixed, attached and adamantly angled anti-American angler, appearing aurally auspicious; awestruck attendees articulate, "Amazing!"
If that sentence made sense, i deserve a snow cone
or Rita's, the delicacy that keeps on giving.
I'm not done with you yet...i'll be back for round two at a later date that would be appropriate for such a second round following a first round would take place.
like my man Cube says, life ain't nothing but bitches and money.
I'm outtie, tell these people something they don't know about me.

-KM (fn)

May. 27th, 2010

Changed Forever, Changed For the Best

*this is absolutely a work in progress*
**even though no one reads this but me anyway**

High School
It's over.
Four years of high school, thirteen years of public education;
If someone had told me when i started all this that it would culminate in a thirty foot walk, a handshake and a mortar-board hat tossed skyward, i might have called them crazy. Or whatever words i was using back in kindergarten.
Looking back is an incredibly unique experience.
Remember fifth grade?
Graduating from elementary school was a big deal. Middle school was a whole new ballgame. Pick your own classes, meet new people...
Eighth grade semi-formal, and the last three years have flown by. High school looms like the metaphorical demon, an entirely foreign and new experience...
And then you start thinking of individual instances.
That time that Alex Eckard and i had Gatorade cap wars in Ms. Richardson's AP World class during lunch.
The look on every administrator's face when i drew that unsavory cartoon on the front of my AP test booklet in 10th grade.
The excruciatingly slow passage of time at the end of the last day of each of the four years of high school. 2:00...2:01...2:02...2:15 never came soon enough.
And not even just on the last days of each year. Individual days that felt as though they'd never end, weeks that dragged on for months, years. "WHEN WILL HIGH SCHOOL END?!?" became the mantra sometime during tenth grade.
And suddenly, all those times seem like they flew by. High school is over. The diplomas have been passed out, parents have cried, future plans have been made, life is about to be put on hold for the best summer of our lives...and you're sitting there thinking WHERE THE FUCK DID THE TIME GO!?
No more sitting at lunch with your school friends
no more classes in the portables
no more shows and late night tech rehearsals
You won't see 95 percent of the people you've spent the past four years of your life with ever again.
And honestly, a little part of you is whispering;
"I want more time"
You know you're going to miss it. Maybe not now, maybe not for a few years.
But you'll be rummaging through some boxes when you head off for your senior year of college and your senior class photo will fall out, or you'll find your yearbook and start flipping through it. And you'll remember.
Oh, you'll remember alright. And the memories will come pouring back in.
Of course, change is a scary thing.
It's the fear of the unknown that underlies any fear of change.
But, no matter what, you'll never look back in anger.
No, you'll look back, and at least some part of you, however small, will say;
"I've been changed, for good."

Mar. 30th, 2010

International Incident

In creative writing class this past week we had to work on writing our own memoirs.
At first, i thought to myself, "Fuck...I don't have enough life experiences to write a memoir."
But then i recalled my wonderful trips to Europe!
Rest assured, there are plenty more memories where this one came from =)
note:a few events were combined for the sake of the narrative, but everything in this entry is true.

International Incident


            I’m awoken by the all-too-familiar chirping of my bedside alarm clock. It seems to always go off too early; I close my eyes just long enough for that damn thing to jump six hours. Before I know it the ungodly beeping starts, I crack my eyes just enough to read “6:13” on the red digital clock face, and another day has begun whether I like it or not. I slide slowly out of my cocoon of warmth and throw the covers violently onto the floor, figuring I may as well take my early morning, sleep deprivation rage out on something. Hey, I don’t have to clean up after myself. This is our last day at the hotel, after all. Stretching my arms above my head, my entire body aching pleasantly from the exertion, I yawn and think, “It’s way too early.” After a long moment of debating whether or not to fall back into my better-looking-by the-second hotel bed, I make my way over to the window, weaving through the maze of personal belongings strewn haphazardly across the floor. If someone set off a bomb in the suitcases of three 18 year old boys, the result wouldn’t look much different. Clothes in varying states of wearability are the prominent fixture, tossed all around the room, hanging from lampshades and stuffed behind chairs. Travel-size toiletries and deodorants rest upon empty travel bags, themselves residing in separate corners of the room. Every now and then minuscule pieces of open floor space break through the chaos, although they’re rare enough to cause me to momentarily pause and muse, “I thought the carpet was red…” Three mothers would probably have conniption fits if they could see the damage their sons were wreaking on this poor defenseless hotel room. A dark gray foam sword bearing the moniker “Warwick Castle” in elegant script letters rests at the foot of Jake’s bed; I hit his feet with it as I pass by and mutter, “Breakfast in ten, bus pulls out in thirty. Get your shit together.” He rolls over and grunts pillow-muffled obscenities in return. I step over empty cans of Orange Coke and Red Bull, piled beside a change purse and two “Welcome to Ireland!” maps, and part the curtains that cover the window just enough to catch a glimpse of the idling bus sitting in the parking lot below. It backfires, prompting Taylor to sit bolt upright in his bed and shout, “ THEY KILLED BIGGIE!” He looks around, rubs the sleep from his eyes, and gets his bearings before calling over to me, “Last day at the castle, eh?” “I suppose so,” I reply, taking a sweeping glance around the room. “Damn. I’m gonna miss this place.”

            As we go through the morning routine, trading off short showers and shoving our ever-growing list of possessions absentmindedly into our bags, I reflect on the week and a half we’ve already completed, and look forward to the week and a half we still have left on the itinerary. “There’s no way the next ten days can top the last ten” I think to myself, reminiscing on incredibly busy days and non-stop antics. We finish up our daily duties, do a final sweep to ensure not a single sock or shirt is left behind, and wave goodbye to our room as we head for what promises to be another runny egg, burnt toast breakfast reception courtesy of the hotel kitchen staff.

            “Hey Jake,” I begin as we lug our plethora of suitcases towards the old fashioned hotel’s sole elevator, “Do something wild for the camera!”

            “Alright!” Jake says back as I pull out my electric blue Canon PowerShot, the tourist’s mainstay for mediocre digital photography. He drops his stuff at the elevator door, turns around and says, “I’ll do a handstand!”

            For whatever reason, be it repeated nights of minimal sleep or just plain brain dysfunction, I agree wholeheartedly. “That’ll be so badass!” I press the record button on the camera and simultaneously call, “Go!”

            Jake takes two steps towards me and throws himself forward, indeed performing a handstand for about three seconds. He starts leaning prominently to the left, however, and before my eyes he falls on his face with a resounding THUD, taking an innocent bystander of a five gallon fire extinguisher and a hefty chunk of drywall with him. No more than a second passes, consisting mainly of the three of us gaping at each other wordlessly. I break the silence with, “Maybe we should take the stairs…”, breaking the spell. We all book it, galloping down the steps three at a time, the stairwell echoing with our footfalls. We make it to breakfast wild-eyed and out of breath and eat our food in silence, imagining in our heads nightmares of the international legal system.

            But our worries turn out to be all for naught; as we hear our teacher leaders call, “Pack the bus and board, we’re leaving in five minutes!” no one has yet to step forward in defense of the fallen foreign firefighter. Taylor leans over and whispers, “Close call man. Let’s not do that again,” as we finish our gourmet meal and head for the parking lot.

“This will be an eight hour bus ride with minimal stoppage people, so make sure you visit the loo before we set off.” Suki, the head teacher, calls out over our heads.

“Why does she think it’s cool to use British words?” I hear Taylor ask Jake a few rows behind me.

“Probably cuz she’s a d-bag Taylor,” Jake responds idly.

“Oh right!” Taylor replies mock-seriously, “I forgot she was afflicted with Doucheitis.” Ever since Suki broke up our late night Shaun of the Dead movie party the third night of the trip, there’s been quite the rift between the leaders and the kids. My friends just prefer to be particularly vocal about it.

Pushing thoughts of throwing Suki over the Cliffs of Moher to the back of my mind, I plug in my headphones, spin to a playlist, and allow the sonic waves of The Beatles to wash over me. The bus makes a U-turn and lurches forward, turning out of the hotel parking lot and onto the main road. As it gathers speed, I press my head against the glass and gaze out the window, watching the unending green landscape blur past me.

Taylor yawns and rests his head on his hands. Jake is already asleep, snoring loud enough to rattle the windows. This is repeated up and down the aisle of the bus; fidgeting and shuffling abound as we all settle in for a very long journey. Awaiting us at the end of it? Another hotel, another shitty meal, another messy room…and sure, plenty of unsuspecting fire extinguishers. It may sound pretty unbelievable, but after a week and a half it’s just another day as a People to People Student Ambassador.





-Kevin Madert

Oct. 1st, 2009


I wrote this last year around this time
Autumn is just such a beautiful, sense-stimulating season
No wonder i just had to put pen to paper about it =P
Enjoy! -KM

Summer's end.
Or rather, a new beginning.
One of multi-colored, multi-sensory beauty.
No longer hot, not quite yet cold, but a blissful compromise.
Change is in the air, in the trees, all around.
Strolling down a quiet wooded lane, it becomes apparent almost instantly.
Long gone are the same old shades of green that adorn the trees during those long warm months.
They've been replaced with a random yet cohesively gorgeous smattering of oranges, yellows, browns, reds, all flowing together as one to create a veritable masterpiece in the leaves, one that not even Van Gogh or Monet could have imagined.
And they fall, oh! how they fall!
Even the slightest breeze rustling through the trees sends them floating towards the ground.
Creating a carpet that tantalizes the eye, they seem to pile up endlessly; multiple shades of multiple colors coating the ground beneath multiple feet.
Laughter echoes as countless children throw caution to the wind and dive headfirst into carefully raked piles, throwing tornadoes of leaves skyward, watching them pirouette in the air.
The air itself is crisp, with a certain freshness to it,
And countless scents pique one's interest:
Fresh baked pie, a crackling bonfire, that indescribable odor that one can only experience through the emptying and carving of a pumpkin.
Scents that let you know fall is here to stay...at least for a while, anyway.
But as September fades into October, and October meanders into November,
The weather gets colder.
The days shorter.
The trees continue to grow more and more bare,
until the the familiar crunch of fallen leaves accompanies each footfall.
And on one of those late November evenings,
Your hands in your pockets, your breath hanging in the air,
Your face awash in the glow of a harvest moon peering out at you from just beyond the horizon,
You pause for a moment.
And a single word escapes your lips, hanging there for just the slightest instant before being blown away on the chilly autumn wind.

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