Saturday, January 13, 2007

Fang and claw

The air is full of flashing glitter streaking by the windows, glinting, sharp, scintillating rainbows of crystal. Melting snow drips from the eaves growing longer and longer, a crystal fang milky white and sharp as a blade. Herds of clouds amble by and smoke crawls slowly from chimneys up and down the street. The snow has muffled all sound, even the rumbling city trucks as they skim the winter pitted asphalt and lay down tracks of orange-gold sand. It is a cold and heartless winter day where the wind bites deeply and scours the trees of cushioning layers of feather light white. The claws and fangs of winter's hold cling tightly.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Out of the flames

While checking my email and going through the posts on the herbal medicine tribe I found myself mentioned and not politely. I was being flamed. Since I get digest emails instead of the usual clutter of almost hourly messages sent from that very busy tribe I didn't realize this had been going on. Someone I've never met attacked me openly and very rudely and asked that someone use his flames for a haiku. Someone jumped in and did. I thanked them for their creativity and asked the flamer why he found the need to attack me. I then went to his profile on, as he obviously had read my profile (he could've gotten the information he used in no other way) and sent him an email asking why he felt the need to attack me since I had no knowledge of him, had never written anything to or about him and hadn't posted anything other than a little information about a rude and crude individual who finds it necessary to attack people looking for information and asking questions about colloidal silver, something about which he is strong and rudely vocal. I wait for his answer.

This situation reminds of situations in the past when I have offered information and mediation only to be attacked. I went back to those posts and found that although my conciliatory words were still there, as were my responses to the flaming attacks, the attacks had been deleted. I'm certain the same will happen with the herbal medicine flamer. From what I know and from what I've read about the peacemakers, those who offer mediation and a chance to find some common ground in the midst of war and personal attacks, the peacemakers are usually cut down by those who do not wish to find an amicable settlement and do not want to listen to reason or find common ground. Seldom do the peacemakers die a peaceful death. Those who do not want peace and who are totally invested in their anger and need to demonize someone, anyone, find ways of creating chaos and strife no matter where they go or what they do. They are the drama queens who delight in feeding off negative and heightened emotions like vampires.

Vampires are seen nowadays as romantic figures doomed to walk the earth without a soul, victims of predators who made them the unwilling recipients of a dark gift, demon lovers who stalk the night and offer their bloody kiss, but vampires are predators who feed off the light and the energy of the living.

Vampires were unholy creatures of the night, fetid carrion eaters who stank of the grave until Dark Shadows gave us Barnabas Collins, the victim of a scorned witch who cursed him with eternal life and an overwhelming thirst for blood. Then came Lestat and Louis and a host of other vampires who offered romance for their pint of blood and suffered the torments of the damned, making us forget they are still predators who would rather drink the last drops of our blood than surrender to Death. Some preyed on rats or only on criminals, thus making them a little less repulsive as they wooed us with their grace and strength and marble carved beauty. Some vampires fed on the blood of cattle while we fed on cattle's milk and meat, making us civilized predators, but predators all the same.

Romance can be found in the strangest places and faces and people tend to romanticize everything and everyone at one point or another, turning the world upside down and seeing everything through rose-colored glasses. We fail to see the friend or lover who uses and abuses us, making us the butt of their thinly veiled jokes, as vampires feeding off our energy and light and intelligence like ticks and fleas and mosquitoes -- or larger more seductive predators. But we are all predators. Whether we feed off animals or vegetables or the bright energy of a peaceful soul, we are first, last and always predators standing on some rung of the food chain waiting to eat or be eaten with or without the flames.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Even when we say goodbye

Yes, I am way behind in my movie watching. I just saw Superman Returns and it brought up a subject that has been on my mind for a while. The movie was good and I enjoyed it but it held no surprises for me. Either I'm too far ahead of most movies or as a writer I have a good sense of story line and plot twists or I've just been around so long it's hard to fool or surprise me--when it comes to movies and books.

One of the main themes was Lois feeling abandoned by Superman when he disappeared for five years. Lois asks Clark Kent why someone you meet and with whom you share a deep connection, almost as if you were made for each other, would disappear without saying goodbye. Clark says that maybe it's because it was too difficult to say the words. "Goodbye. See? It's easy to say," she says to Clark just before he hails her a cab and she drives off. Later at home she lies to her husband and says she wasn't in love with Superman. We all know that wasn't true, just like she'd quit smoking altogether. Some things, no matter what we say or how we hide, remain true.

Lois fights Perry White about getting back into things with Superman, about talking to him. She wrote him off years ago when she married Richard White, Perry's nephew, and went on with her life. Did she really write Superman off? She has just won a Pulitzer Prize in journalism for her article about why the world (she) doesn't need Superman and here he is back in her life again. She doesn't want him there. It hurts to see him. It hurts to hear his voice. It hurts to watch him fly by and know he's breathing the same air again. She said goodbye to Superman. She doesn't want him in her life...or does she?

A close friend recently told me she was over the man she loved. He had jerked her around, ignored her for months, came back briefly to revisit old memories and times and then shut her out again. She emailed him and said goodbye. She's proud of the fact that she can see him now and even work with him and not feel like she wants to burst into tears because he's ignoring her. She's fooling herself. So did Lois Lane.

Even when we say goodbye we don't really want things to be over when we have found that one person that makes us happy, makes us hurt, makes us feel connected in ways we never thought possible before. We write them off. We move on with our lives, but all the time we're looking over our shoulder or up in the sky hoping to catch a glimpse of that one person that makes our hearts beat faster. We complain about having to see them again all the time hoping that a brief encounter or a quick conversation will turn into more. It hurts to see them because we know they will eventually walk away again or even disappear for a while but the pain is worth those few moments of pleasure.

We think of them every moment of the day and they intrude into our dreams and fantasies. We turn to share something with them or reach for the phone or the computer to email and share whatever we've found. We doubt they will respond, and often they don't, but we still hope they will give in and write back or call. It hurts when they don't and it hurts when they do because those fleeting moments are all too quickly gone. There are times the other person believes they are sparing us further pain but they're wrong. Every moment without them hurts. Every moment we think of them and realize they aren't beside us hurts. And, yes, it hurts to see them, but it is a sweet and exquisite pain that makes it possible to bear all the moments without them.

Lois, despite all her protestations to the contrary, needs to know Superman is close by and that they will see each other once in a while. He's not gone from her life. My friend who is so proud she has gotten over the fella who hurt her and continues to hurt her still sees him nearly every day. It hurts but not seeing him would hurt even more. We all have someone in our pasts or in our lives who hurts us by not being with us but we are all willing to bear the pain to share a few more moments, a few more words, even a letter or an email from time to time because we need to know we haven't been forgotten. We need to know that the relationship that meant and continues to mean so much to us was not a fantasy or a figment of our imaginations and that somewhere in some shadowed corner of their hearts they miss us, too.

It is said that beauty is pain and there is no gain without pain. Life is pain. Love is pain but silence is harsh and cold. Pain is preferable to silence. Pain reminds us we still feel, we still have a heart and we are still alive.