Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Conversation (A Fantasy)

Please don’t read this. Instead go buy Correspondence (A Fiction) and listen to it. Or vice versa. No seriously.

If you’re still unconvinced that Correspondence is for you, I’ll do my best to persuade you.

One of my favorite parts of the whole music thing, is watching an artist progression. Watching an artist or band improve their skill, sound and message. Watching them tweak and refine their style to find where they truly shine. Sure sometimes there are rough spots, band that abruptly change styles and find themselves out of their depth. Or artists who tone down their message and lose my respect.

But there are certainly bands and artists who continually improve. Who with every new album set a new standard and blow me away (For Today, Brave Saint Saturn, Showbread etc.). There are even some bands who break up and come back together better than ever before (Burlap to Cashmere, Five Iron Frenzy).

I’ve known and followed Levi the Poet since the Monologue years. So while I can’t say that I’ve been a fan since the beginning, I’ve been pretty close. I’ve watched as both in albums and concerts Levi has continually refined his message and delivery. I’ve seen him add music, back up vocals and even a video presentation all the while sticking to the vocal delivery and raw honesty that drew me to him in the first place.

As anyone who’s read more than two posts on this blog can attest, Levi’s been a really big influence and inspiration in both of our lives. So when Levi’s latest kickstarter was announced, Noah got right on it. For reasons that are still a mystery to me, I (regrettably) didn’t contribute to the Kickstarter. I did however buy Levi’s newest album as soon as I could. Though I’m still waiting for the physical CD, I’ve downloaded and listened to the album multiple times.

When I read The Brothers Karamazov I could only compare it to a mountain. A mountain simply is. Its beauty defies our criticism or even our compliments. I could never detract from its mountain grandeur by complaining about it or criticizing some of its facets. Nor could I really add to it in a meaningful way by giving it a positive review. The most I could do for a mountain is share it with others by visiting it with them or giving them directions.

Perhaps in climbing the mountain I would find treacherous drop-offs or beautiful views. But I would be doing no more than discovering what was there all along. Perhaps I could share with my friends some of the better places on the mountain to go or show them new routes to get to new areas. But again, I would be doing no more than revealing what was always there.

This is how I felt upon listening to Correspondence (A Fiction). Its sublime in ways I could never describe. And though I loved it on first listen through, I know that I will enjoy it for as long as I live and constantly get more out of it.

To sum up; Correspondence (A Fiction) by Levi the Poet is great. You should support it and its author by buying a copy, listening to it and playing it for all your friends.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Slammin' Salmon

Hey all. Built a Salmon Ladder (of Ninja Warrior fame) in my back yard the other day. For those of you who don't know what that is, take a look.
I've made some modifications since these pictures.

Including adding more screws, tightening everything up in general and getting a larger (and not bent) bar.

I'm still planning on adding a little bit more.
A rope, a thicker bar at the top, another bar at the top, a counter wait for the climbing bar, etc.

Here's a video of Noah.

And one of me. Sorry about the camera, my cameraman must have been on drugs.

Still not sure how long it will all last, it seems to hold up pretty well to Noah and he's about 240 but we'll see. I used all pressure treated wood and fancy, coated decking screws. I also painted the exposed ends of the 4x4s with redguard (And one of these days I'll coat the downward facing screw-holes in roofing caulk). The basic instruction video I followed can be found here.
The stuff they say about wanting a crash pad and something to stop the bar from falling and 'slammin' into your head is pretty true. This thing terrifies me. Anywho, happy climbin'!

Death is never an option.

Death is never an option, especially when you are already dead.
I never chose this life.
 It was like an infection, growing slowly spreading throughout my body making its way into my mind.
 You think I want to live like this? Who wants to live life inside of a hollow shell?
I wasn't always empty; I was full of life and love until they both left me.
They ran away like a child runs from his father, and I wasn't good enough to chase after them.
So I turned inward to see what I had left.
There were gaps and cracks, (there always is inside of everyone) I tried to fill them in before my heart spilled out.
But it was too late,
My heart and all its emotions had melted away.
So I was left empty and hollow, living life as a stumbling skeleton.
A pile of frail bones.
Looking for something but not knowing what.
But I saw something.
Not like the other lights.
Neon signs hanging in front of the anglers mouth promising happiness.
This was different.
It glowed a different color and promised something real.
And as I dragged my worthless corpse towards that light, I felt warm.
It radiated hope and filled my bones with strength.
It restored my vision.
And as I stared in awe at the colorful world of living color my soul was restored.
 I looked behind me to see a person. A man so happy it seemed that the light shining off of him was pure love.
He took my hand and gave me a heart.
Not a broken heart or something rotten. A new heart full of love and peace.
A new heart that looked like a blood red pearl.

And he folded my hands over it saying “I made it new so you won’t have to die anymore won’t you take it and love me”.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Brutal Honesty

I've been following Levi The Poet for quite some time now. I've been a big fan of his since before seasons and I've watched as he and his work have matured. For those of you who don't know who Levi is he has a blog over here.

One of Levi's big things is total honesty ("and now I shout 'TRANSPARENCY'). Which is something I really respect. It seams to me like we spend to much time hiding our dirt and covering up our sins. We eschew confessions (especially public) and are content to allow our deeds of darkness to remain there.

I am, and have been for a while, a pretty big fan of honesty. A big part of that for me is being honest with our struggles, failures and mistakes. We're not perfect and it doesn't do anyone any good when we pretend to be.

All that being said. I wrote this a while ago but I haven't really revised it so it's pretty raw. I apologize if you're offended by this but this is who I am. If you don't like honesty then please read no further. Otherwise, please accept this with the spirit of love and contrition with which it was written and now posted.

   Well my friend, I’ve been struggling with Lust again. And though I hate every minute of it I must admit I savor it,

I enjoy every moment I spend at her house, though all the while there’s this thought in the back of my mind like There must be more than this. God meant for this to be more than it is.

But I reject that truth and instead swallow whole the lie that this is what sex is supposed to be all the while wishing I could be free from this addiction.

Arise, my soul, arise

Shake off your guilty fears

The bleeding sacrifice

On my behalf appears

Before the throne my surety stands

Before the throne my surety stands

My name is written on His hands

I wandered into the adulterous woman’s house and now she’s got me on a leash. Pull as I might I cannot escape from the control she has over me.

And I don’t want to leave her! I must admit that sometimes I’m in love with Lust. That even while I pray, asking God to forgive me (oh how can you forgive me?), I eagerly plan my next visit to her house all the while anticipating not only the pleasure I’ll find within but the pain as well.

The pain of knowing that I’ve hurt myself again. That I’ve hurt God again (Oh can you ever forgive me?)

He ever lives above

For me to intercede

His all redeeming love

His precious blood to plead

His blood atoned for every race

His blood atoned for every race

And sprinkles now the throne of grace

My friend I’ll admit I’ve been struggling with this sin. Struggling? Hah! I used to struggle but now when Lust shows up I just hide my head and hope that she doesn’t destroy me too much. I hang my head when I look up and see the damage that she’s done not only to me but everyone around me.

With my head bowed I survey the ruin that I’ve surrounded myself with: the damage done to my relationships, the power this thing has gained over my life, the pain in God’s eyes as I bow my head and apologize but… I’m still planning and hoping for her next visit. Drooling in sick anticipation of partaking in that which I hate. (Oh GOD SAVE ME!)
Praise be to our God and Father who delivers us from that which devours our souls.
Sometimes, when I’m done lusting after their bodies, I wish I could share the love of Christ with these women. “Excuse me ma’am? I know I’ve just been objectifying, exploiting, using and devouring you but…”

I’m so sorry. I’m sorry for lusting after you. I’m sorry that porn is destroying you the way it’s destroying me. But there is hope (God can forgive us).

O my soul, arise

Behold the risen Christ

Your Great High Priest

Your spotless sacrifice

O my soul, arise

God owns you as His child

Shake off your guilty fears

My soul, arise

Only in the cross of Jesus is there forgiveness. Only in the cross of Jesus is there redemption. Only in the cross of Jesus Christ is there freedom.







Jesus Christ died to give us these gifts. Let us accept them and turn from that which rejects him.

But here I am again. I HATE THIS COMPUTER! I HATE THE INTERNET! Didn’t I just apologize for this? Aren’t I free from this?

Why’s everybody naked? Come on, put on some clothes. I don’t want to see that. I don’t. I don’t. I love this addiction.

These images will never go away, they’re with me waking and sleeping. I wish that I could wipe these memories, these images from my mind. But I stare at these pictures like I’m trying to burn them into my memory.

What good are these memories if I can’t learn from them? How’d I get here. I wasn’t heading to this house. She opens the door and smiles. I stumble over the threshold and fail to rise.

Jesus I’m so sorry. I’m such a disappointment. I’m such a failure. How could I ever be your son? How could you ever forgive me.

Five bleeding wounds He bears

Received on Calvary

They pour effectual prayers

They strongly plead for me:

“Forgive him, O forgive,” they cry

“Forgive him, O forgive,” they cry

“Don’t let that ransomed sinner die!”

Lately Lust has been bringing around her cousin Guilt. I used to fight him, but lately I’ve been wondering if he’s got a point. Like, if I keep failing over and over again. If I’m not even convinced of the sincerity of my sorrow. If I don’t have victory. What does Christ have to do with me?

O my soul, arise

Behold the risen Christ

Your Great High Priest

Your spotless sacrifice

O my soul, arise

God owns you as His child

Shake off your guilty fears

My soul, arise

Six hours and it was finished. Forgiveness is offered in his nail pierced hands. “I paid for that.” My hands shake as I strive to accept this gift of grace. The look in his eyes isn’t disappointment, it’s not scorn or hatred. “And I will always love you.”


“It’s not you, it’s me.”

Thanks be to God for the forgiveness and freedom found in Jesus Christ who died for me.

My God is reconciled

His pard’ning voice I hear

He owns me as His child

I can no longer fear

With confidence I now draw nigh

With confidence I now draw nigh

And “Father, Abba, Father,” cry

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

And you thought I was dead.

A Nightmare

I keep having a recurring nightmare. Despite its many variations, it’s always the same dream. I’m at a paint job, my boss tells me to cut in and tells a coworker to roll before leaving. In some dreamms I never actually see him, just a note or the knowledge of his commands. Sometimes he leaves me in charge, sometimes my coworker. Sometimes there are no instructions, the dream starts at the next step.

I start cutting in but… my coworker keeps getting in the way and trying to cut in. In some variations he tries to prep, or paint the walls the wrong color. Sometimes he even lights the house on fire.
I keep trying to explain to my coworker that he’s doing the wrong thing, that this isn’t what he’s supposed to be doing.

He ignores me.

After a while I start to doubt myself: maybe I should just change jobs. It probably doesn’t matter who does what as long as the job gets done right? Maybe the boss said for me to roll. Maybe the walls are supposed to be these colors.
But no matter what I do the dream always end with my boss showing up and firing me for doing not getting the job done or doing it wrong. I wake up then.

Sunday, July 13, 2014


He woke with a start. The light pierced through his eyelids as he closed them tightly. As his thoughts floated around his mind he realized where he was. He opened his eyes and jumped to get up but his arms yanked him back towards the base of the mast. He looked and saw his hands and arms tied around the large mast broken half way up he sat down to collect himself and figure out what to do. He was about to start untying the knots but when he unclenched his strong hand and saw a large strand of a beard. He remembered, it was his father’s. His father had cut off the beads woven into his beard, the beads that had been handed from father to father, and gave them to his son. That was his father’s last action before being crushed by the falling mast. He starred down at the glass and amber beads woven into the rough hair, he looked up slightly to see his father. Dead, crushed beneath the tremendous weight of the large mast. He did not cry or shout out he knew it was of no use. His father was dead and the only thing to do would be to live strong in his father’s honor. Because it is the acts of the sons that reward the father in batha-notar(heaven and/or val halla).

Friday, June 13, 2014

A Conversation

I wrote a story for you the other day. I tried to communicate some things I thought needed to be said. It might not have been pointless, but I don’t think you ever read it so I guess it is. I doubt you’ll ever read this either. I wish that I could communicate with you.

I wish that I could understand that I don’t just view you as a person but as a representation of a different mindset. A different worldview that I don’t always understand.

Whenever I think of you I hear this loud whistle and a man in a uniform runs up on me. “You almost forgot your baggage sir.” He says whilst handing me far more luggage than I could possibly carry on my own.

I stand there and try to get a handle on it while in the background the train leaves me in the station; carrying with it my understanding of you as a person.

I wrote a poem about trains once. You probably never heard it; which is just as well I suppose, it isn’t finished yet. It’s an allegory in which trains are metaphors for thoughts. I guess generally trains are metaphors for conversations which is more applicable to my life since I make a hobby of derailing them. Maybe that was a mistake since I seem to have lost my ability to communicate. Not only with you or those (or those things) that you represent but with everybody.

I wish I could understand that people are people and not ideas or metaphors. Maybe then I could communicate with them. Where is this train taking me?

The train stops to take on mail. A man in a uniform enters my carriage and hands me an envelope. Inside is a letter:

Dear Friends,

I miss you. It seems like we never spend time together anymore. I miss your neverending presence in my life. I miss having to tell you to leave my house. I miss staying up till some absurd hour talking about nothings of great import. It breaks my heart everytime one of you gets married or moves away or just out of my life. Your marriages are so bittersweet for me. But do it. Do what you know to be right and in my grief I’ll find an ineffable joy for you and your spouse. I know that God gives even as he takes and that he’s using you; so be used my friends.

I miss you. I miss the community we once had that now seems lost. I miss being close to you. I miss believing I was close to you. I miss praying together and studying the bible together and exercising together. I wish our dreams of building a settlement together could come true and we could live in communion as we only dream of now. But I know that we do, and God has called us (or at least placed us) in the communities we’re currently in. God did not take that away for no reason. I serve a living God. A God who has a purpose for each of our lives. And I believe that we are destined to great things. Let us live in the present and look towards the future so that we might say “Those were the lives when God did great things and proved Himself amazing”.

I miss you. I miss being an integral part of one anothers life. I know that people come and go, but why must it be so hard? Why is this big, crazy, amazing world so big? Why do you all have to live everywhere else and not with me? But I rejoice in this blessing. That God has scattered his faithful so that I can always find you. Like Elijah, I sometimes need reminded that God’s plans and people are bigger than me.

I miss you. It’s not so much those that leave my state as those that leave my life that grieve me the most. Despite the boasts I made that we were friends for life, I’m no longer part of yours. I wish I could say that I still pray for you every night, but I don’t. I’m not really a very good friend. I know someone that is though, I thought you knew Him also and pray that you do. A friend who unceasingly pours out effectual prayers on my behalf. Thank you Jesus for your unwavering friendship. My mind is filled with the memories of friends I’ve had and of those people who have come and gone in my life. Tonight I will pray for you. May God be close to you.

Dear Friends, may God guard and protect you. May He lead, light and guide you. May He enslave and free you. May He reveal Himself to you in ever novel ways. May He give you what you need and withhold from you what you don’t. May you depend on Him and look for Him in every circumstance. May He keep His presence close to you. May we all meet again one day, but let our hope never lie in that.

Saturday, May 24, 2014


Verily these verbal verisimilitudes are but verbose platitudes voiced from a plateau of arrogance, or perhaps ignorance.

If we but knew of what we know not we would know how little we know and so by not knowing know more than we did when we knew everything and had no knowledge.

The knowledge of the knowledge we lack allows us to know what we know not and therefore rather than being proud of our knowledge of nothing to know the nothingness of our pride.

Friday, May 23, 2014


This, is pretty weird. I've been practicing writing. Not communicating or saying cool things. Just... writing. What follows is strange and completely unrelated. Just enjoy it. (Or not if you're one of those people.)

I sat there in class. Staring out the windows at the dragons circling above. Wishing that I could ride one, or better yet be one. Oh to be a dragon, soaring so freely above the world. Power, coursing freely and vibrantly through my veins; rippling through my muscles, delivered through tendons into my mighty claws and fearsome jaws. With one beat of my wings I could lift my body from the ground and soar mightily through the air. Unparalleled freedom.

And none, none of these puny ground-bound men would be able to challenge me. Even my rider would constantly be aware that he rode only at my suffrage. With a twist, a flick of my tail and drop of my wings, away he would drop. Kilometers below he would smash into the hard earth. The terror of the fall would live in him throughout the flight. Never would he take me for granted. Never would his respect for me lessen.

But in time, the gift God gave but to man would triumph. Is insatiable thirst for dominion and his unquenchable ingenuity would conquer even me. The mighty beast would lay calm, tamed, beneath his hand. With bridle, with saddle and with prehensile thumbs he would overcome me. And I, clever as I would be, would still have to bow down and acknowledge him as lord. All my great power would be his to command. And then I would learn a new thing. In these bounds, under his command. Freedom? True freedom. Freedom I’d been incapable of dreaming of before. My liberty was my chain. My wings dragged me down until he lifted me up. His will set me free. Only, by being led by man could I be truly free to do as I willed.

But what freedom would this be? I want not freedom if I can’t be in control. No bit or bridle for my mighty jaws. ME who could crush a man in a single bite. Who could rip a horse in two with 40 centimeter long teeth. That I would close my mouth and meekly allow a man to pet my muzzle? Madness! I would choose my own path, even if it were a path onto destruction.

With chains and whips, with swords and other dragons; they would try in vain to tame me. To break my will would be an impossible task. I WILL NEVER SERVE YOU.

But… with love. Love would tame this beast. And in time, I would lie, be still. I would rest in the love of my caretaker. Hunt, kill, sleep, hunt, mate. Such was my life. But now it would be filled with love. My caretaker would drive me to hunt, but feed me if I failed. He would provide and I would serve. A symbiotic relationship built not upon mutual benefit but respect. And… Sacrifice?

For he would be willing to die for me, and I in turn for him. Eagerly I would chap at the bit, knowing that it was no longer what controlled me. Love drove me, the bit only served as a means of communication to quicken my response.

I snapped back to my immediate surroundings. My professor mumbled on. I briefly considered dozing. Or opening…. why yes. So it would be. I opened the window and climbed out. Ten kilometers up I clung to the side of the building. Building? Cliff. I began to climb. For a while it was easy. I exulted in toned muscles. Hours of exercise had honed my body. But as the climb wore on, as meters stretched into kilometers…

What’s that? Oh, yes please…. That would be wonderful…. Thank you.

I hung by my toes from the skin of the sphere as it whirled through space. Spinning, revolving; a mad top. Green blades failed to cut my calloused feet. Far below (above?) drops of rain rose to soak the world. The dragons turned out to be bats, a mere flight of my fancy had morphed them into something ferocious. The plain stretched out before me. Curving away into infinity. Thoughts of calculus sprung unbidden into my mind. Infinity, distance, curvature. Oh the beauty of this world to which I clung, so tenaciously, by my toes.

With a roll of my soldiers I launched my attack. Dice of fate on a table of destiny. Win or lose, I was committed in force. I so detested war back then. Before I learned its necessity; and its beauty. Nothing like red to paint the world.

With a roll of my shoulders I launched into a handspring. Failing I landed hard on my back. The air used the distraction my pain provided to escape my lungs. Mingling with her sisters she was quickly lost to the sky. Oh well, I could always find more.

I sucked in breath but there was nothing to fill my lungs. I was drowning in the void of space. As the stars and the blackness began to engulf my mind I reflected on what had brought me here. Those fateful and oh so fatal decisions that had led me down this path.

She spoke. I closed my eyes and lost myself in the lilt of her voice. The depth of her words was a reflection of the depth of her eyes in my own. I remember holding her hand. Except it was my hand; because we were one. Yes, I was once one with someone. Now I am but a half. If she’d died it would have been as swift as it was unexpected. The devastation I would have felt would have been ineffable.

But she didn’t die. That would have been impossible. She was just missing. She’d gone ahead and now I must follow. She was waiting. At a distant star. A binary star full of passion and beauty. This chintzy little world could never contain us. We needed a bigger planet. A brighter star. A fuller system. A larger galaxy. A more infinite universe.

I saw a nebula the other night that reminded me of you. I knew it was night because it’s always been night since you’ve been gone. It was a vivid green, swirled with pinks and lit by purples. Star shone like your eyes, blues and golds. If it had been pure gold, or pure hydrogen. It still wouldn’t have been a fit painting to capture your captivating beauty.

“An asteroid.” He swallowed as though trying to swallow the tears in his eyes. “The thing you have to understand, space is cold. Its hard and dark. It knows nothing of us mortals. It knows nothing of love. Sailors upon the earthly seas understood the harshness of the sea. Space is the same. All spacefarers maintain a love/hate relationship with the void through which their ships ply. Space is beautiful, like the sea. Its beautiful in a deadly, brutal way.”

I said nothing. The room was silent, everyone waited for the old sailor to finish his tale. A relic from the days of pioneers, the golden age of danger and high adventure, he’d spun his yarn and entrapped us all.

He joined the room in silence, a moment given to the couple that had died nearly a hundred years before. He shook his head and looked up. His eyes expanded as though he’d just noticed the expectant crowd. “Love’s too big for this world. This universe ain’t infinite the way love is. No love like that can last. He followed her even unto death. An asteroid smashed a hole right through his engine. He drifted, dead in the water, until he ran out of oxygen.”

Someone in the back piped up. “Then how do you know the story? If’n they’re all dead?”

The old man turned back to his drink. He’d seemed to lose interest in us, and even in the story. “The erts found an audiolog.” He tossed over his shoulder.

It was tales of darkness like that that had replaced the fables of glory from a hundred years prior. When mankind first ventured into space he was wide eyed a naive. Like a child left to its own he’d wandered out into the galaxy and gotten lost. Not physically of course. We just weren’t prepared to face the immensity (and maybe even the enormity) of the universe. Up until then we’d never had to face how small we really are. There’s always been some crazy monks of course, those willing to stare infinity in the face and in turn face how small they really were. Maybe they learned some method of coping.Humanity, however, was devoid of any method for dealing with its own insignificance. Space was colder, darker, larger than we’d ever imagined. But it was also more beautiful than we could even realize as yet. Or so I hoped.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Blurb. Blarg. Glurgg.

Let us not reflect on the future that lies behind us but rather look towards the past that lies before us.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

A story called 'Tents'

There once was a kingdom with a most unusual king. The kingdom was at war with all of the kingdoms surrounding it. Despite being heavily outnumbered and surrounded, the kingdom lost few battles and prevailed valiantly against its enemies. Though the war had continued for thousands of years, the cause was still fresh in the minds of those on both sides.

The name of this kingdom and of its kings, as well as its enemies and their kings, are extraneous to this story. What is important to this story is the strange king of the beleaguered kingdom and his strange method of training soldiers. The king was in the habit of riding into the neighboring countries and finding enemy combatants. Upon meeting his adversaries, the king would offer them his life. If the enemy took the king’s life, the king would recruit the hostile personage into his army by rather convoluted means that are tangential at the moment. Those who turned the king away were left in a state of blissful aggression until they changed their minds or were killed; at which point they died (that is to say when they were killed).

Our story actually takes place in the army of the king. The kingdom of which I refer actually had no indigenous soldiers. Its entire military force was comprised of those recruited by the aforementioned means. Thus all of the soldiers were brothers in having been converted from being enemies of the kingdom. The army of the king was subdivided into divisions, brigades, regiments, battalions, platoons, companies, etc. Our story is chiefly concerned with two particular battalions and with a few soldiers within them.

For some time before the beginning of our story a sort of feud had been simmering between the two battalions. Supposed, or perhaps real, insults had been passed back and forth between our characters. Harsh words were spoken and lines had been drawn. One of the battalions became so incensed with the other that they had upped and moved their tents a whole ten miles up stream. It is to be assumed that both battalions brought up their complaint against the other with the proper authorities over them. But the upstream battalion refused to have anything to do with the downstream battalion, going so far as to refuse to gather before a military tribunal and have the matter judged accordingly.

A few soldiers from the downstream battalion acted in like kind and began to refuse to train with or support the upstream battalion. They even found like minded soldiers from other battalions that shared their belief to support them. The simmering confrontation looked close to boil over. Some said that the lines in the sand would soon become lines of battle. Things indeed were in a sorry state.

And such was the state of these things when, one day, a soldier from the downstream battalion ran into a soldier from the upstream battalion. The two soldiers had both been sent to the same well in order to bring water back to the camp. They approached each other warily. Though they wore the same uniform (and loe, were even the same rank), they were hesitant to trust each other.

As they drew near each other, on their way to draw water, they both offered the proper salute and greeting. These pleasantries past, they eyed each other for a long moment. The well separating them was no deeper than their gazes in that moment.

“Comrade, I seem to remember you. We’ve met before?” The downstream soldier (who we’ll call Bob for the sake of the story) tilted his head to the side.

“Yes, quite a few times actually. We used to be in the same camp.” Replied the upstream soldier (by the same token ‘Jim’).

“Ah! You must be Jim then? It seems like I never see you anymore. I wonder what happened.” Bob smiled sadly; knowing, at least in part, the cause of their separation.

“Yes,” JIm replied. “It seems almost as though we’re no longer friends.”

Bob sighed heavily. “But I’d like to still be your friend. Are not we in the same army? Fighting the same enemy? Serving the same king?”

“And I would gladly be yours comrade.” Jim said.

“Good then! Then let’s repair to my camp and have tea.” Bob offered his hand.

Jim stared sadly down at the hand for a long moment. “I cannot my comrade.”

“And why is that?” Bob dropped his hand, looking puzzled.

“There is one, in your camp; a commanding officer. I cannot stand him.”

“You would avoid the entire camp for the sake of one officer?” Said Bob.

“I would. He is a harsh man. I will not go into any camp that he is in a position of authority within.” Jim’s eyes matched the hardness of his voice.

“But comrade, how then can we be friends?” Pain was substituted for Jim’s hardness in Bob’s eyes.

Jim brightened. “You can come to my camp!”

And so the two comrades set out. A day’s journey took them back to Jim’s camp where they spent the evening and much of the next day. As Bob was leaving he spoke to Jim again.

“Comrade, will you still not come to my camp? Will you not for my sake? Or for the sake of your other friends within my camp?”

“I will not.” Came the stolid response.

“Nor will you vent your anger upon the one who has offended you that reparation might take place?”

“I will not.” And so Bob left his comrade there and returned to his own camp. After reporting to his commanding officers, Bob retired to his tent. As he lay upon his sleeping mat he reflected upon his day. He thought of his friend Jim, of his friends camp and all he’d seen there. He thought of all that had bothered him within his friend’s camp. He thought of all that was different and of the little that was wrong. He mourned for his friends pain and strived to hope. Tears streamed down his wooden cheeks as he fought to remember good of his friend and his camp. Finally, exhaustion claimed him and he lost consciousness.

It was a few weeks later when Bob and Jim again met. They both happened to be in a neighboring battalions camp at the same time.

“Bob!” JIm’s face lit up in a smile. “We really need to spend more time together.”

Bob strived to smile for a while before succeeding. “We do indeed comrade.”

They talked about this, that and the other. Eventually the conversation turned to the enmity that existed between the two camps. “I talked to the officer who offended you. He wants to make amends but is… dissuaded from visiting your camp. Will you not visit him?”

“I want nothing to do with him.” Jim’s reply was as strong as ever.

“Then still, you will not visit my camp?” Bob tried one last time.

“I will not.”

Bob squatted down. “This is how I see it. This is the kingdom.” He drew a large circle in the dirt with his finger. “And these are our camps.” He drew two smaller circles within the larger circle. “I think that both these camps are on the same side?” He looked up questioningly; Jim said nothing. Bob continued, tears in his voice and eyes, “They both seem to be within the kingdom, and within the same army. So why then must they quarrel? Can’t we fight the same enemy?”

Tuesday, May 6, 2014


I wrote you a story. But I'm not gonna post it just yet. For now here's this.

The tree stretched upwards, crawling up the cliff. Kilometers of twisted growth, climbing higher than the mind could comprehend. Any sense of scale was lost in the vastness of the plant and cliff. Its branches stretched out like the limbs of some animal, reaching out to find finger and toe-holds, invisible from below. Thousands of years it’d been climbing up the cliff; determined to reach the top for reasons only it knew.

A brief google search left me unable to find any picture analogous to what I just described.
Oh well, here's this.
The Lone Cypress

(Image credit: bdinphoenix [flickr])

Monday, May 5, 2014

Review: Brave Saint Saturn

I've been really blessed by this band that my friend David showed me. The band's lead singer is Reese from Five Iron Frenzy. They have three albums about a NASA mission to Saturn which goes wrong. They've got some pretty awesome songs and lyrics. They're a lot darker and more serious than what I know of FIF.
 Consider this your first installment of Hipster Music Reviews.

This isn't really much of a review I guess. *Shrug* Enjoy.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Ninja Story

I had this awesome idea to make the text of this story invisible. Blogger's making it hard to do that without being super obvious. Ah well, enjoy. {{EDIT: I had a new and more brilliant idea... maybe.}}

There once was a ninja named Tom. Tom was a good ninja because he was sneaky; and also he could do backflips. One day Tom went on a sneaky ninja mission to assassinate someone. Sadly, poor Tom forgot his sword. So when he got to the place for the assassination he couldn't do anything. Tom went home and cried himself to sleep.

If you give up, the solution is Click the ninjas.

Friday, April 18, 2014


I feel like I look for satisfaction in relationships. Lecrae says "help me find my joy in you and not people and places"; this is my prayer to God as well. I don't think I'll ever have a relationship with a person (here on earth) that will fulfill my relational needs. Not even a wife...
I think that communication and relationships are things that are depraved due to the fall. We'll never find the friendships or loves that we truly desire. Maybe I'm just cynical. Sometimes I imagine being so close to someone. As though we literally share the same skin. We're no longer two but one. A physical, mental, spiritual and emotional oneness I can only dream of. Not just in some metaphorical sense like we try to say marriages are. Maybe this is what they're supposed to be; but here on earth I don't think they ever are.

I don't actually ever plan on getting married and I'm certainly not currently wed; so I don't know if there is something I'm missing. But as far as friendships go... They really only last while we're together. I'm still friends with Michael right now but that doesn't mean anything since we're not together. I don't feel anything (say what you will about love being more than a feeling). Even Noah, we talk about everything (which seems pointless because we're always thinking the same things) but right now I'm alone. And that's all I feel. Alone.

Even if they were perfect, I shouldn't look for joy in my relationships with friends. Or even some future hypothetical wife. I really want to know God. To have a relationship with Jesus Christ. But unlike Ascend the Hill, I don't feel him closer than my skin. I feel like we're not really friends because He doesn't talk to me and I rarely talk to Him. I'm scared that He's screaming at me (screaming His love) and I'm just deaf; all the while crying out to Him that He would to speak to me. I want to hear him. "This is Eternal Life, that they may know you and Jesus Christ whom you have sent." I always tell people that I personally know Jesus. But when I'm being honest, I don't know him anymore than I know Isaac Asimov. "There's a difference between knowing about someone and knowing them" they say, but then they tell me I can know God by reading a book He wrote. That's definitely the way I got to know my friend Michael.

Sometimes I have these conversations (and this one's reminiscent of the ones I have with God) and say these things about how I desire to know God and really want to have a relationship with Him. But how much time do I invest in seeking Him?

And it's dawning on me that that's the way that relationships work. My friend Josh is suffering, and even though he's doing better he's still a mess. Every time I see him I have great conversations with him. But I'm finding it incredibly hard to actually pursue having a relationship with him; getting to know him and actively seeking to love him.

It's okay. God's big. He'll make up for me not seeking Him. He'll seek me... Like some kind of Calvinist doctrinal statement. And maybe one day He'll seek to cause me to seek Him seeking me. (But sometimes I worry that I'm stuck).

God. I need you.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Another poem

Even in the midst
of this
I long still
for some greater joy
is there more?
or is this it?
I sit
longing for another
but when you’re here
I feel so lonely

What’s missing?
is it you?
or me?
mindless amusement
petty diversions all

These hands can’t write
these thoughts can’t be heard
I communicate nothing
with these groans
(read ‘this silence’)
no words convey
these feelings inside
feel them I pray

Oh to be content
or better yet
to find joy in you
to live this moment
to the fullest
to shed this unnameable feeling
of longing and dread


Robotic Revolution

Apparently we're back. Google's automated spam detecting robot decided that we were its enemy. Disregarding the three laws it immediately took the offensive and shut down our blag. Luckily we were able to contact a human and have him (her?) save us. For now we still triumph over our artificial counterparts. Still the future seems bleak. Maybe when if I become a cyborg the robots will let me live.

Moving on. Getting rid of the hipster review. Not enough room to say all the things that need to be said. Hopefully we'll put reviews up here in the main posts.

Noah started a blog by himself over here.

Isaac may do the same... who knows.

We've not been writing much... life happens and writing's hard.

And.... I think that's it. Have nice life. Don't get mistaken for spam and eaten by a bacon loving robot.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Amazon Part I

I come bearing stories.

Nguvu kipped to her feet and chased after him. He sprinted away for all he was worth; but she’d always been the faster. She quickly caught up to him and tackled him from behind they tumbled to the ground and lay on the grass for a moment. Catching their breath and staring at the stars above. Pacha was absent tonight, the stars shown in undiminished glory.

After a while Muchumba sat up. The stars cast enough light for him to see Nguvu’s outline, her stomach rising and falling with each breath. “Nguvu?”


“Will you share tā moko with me?”

She was silent a long time. When she spoke there were tears in her voice. “Why do you taunt me so? You are a prince, I am no princess.”

He stood up suddenly. “I don’t care. You will be the best wife. He stopped and looked down at her. She’d sat up and was staring despondently at her hands; folded in her lap. “I love you. I can’t marry another.”

She looked up at him. Tears filling and overflowing her eyes. “What of your father?”

“My father will understand. He knows when customs must be broken. I’ll make him see.”

He knelt down and put his arm around her shoulders. “What do you say?”

“You know I will.” She looked up and met his eyes. “I’ll wait for you.”

He kissed her lightly on her forehead. “I know you will.” Rising to his feet he continued. “After this battle. We’ll have the ceremony.” With those final words he strode away, returning to the village to prepare for tomorrow’s battle.

For a long while Nguvu sat on the knoll, pondering and worrying over the future. The stars were washed away by the pale pink waves of sunrise before she returned to the village. By that time Muchumba had already left; never to return.

Sunday, March 23, 2014


spinning in a circle never ceasing, the clock keeps ticking. ticking ticking and a terrible ringing fill my ears, fills my head. this pain is never ceasing like my thoughts, but it will never deceive me its a constant. as constant as the mistakes i make. like the one that brought me here. tears falling like rain, its all out of my the events that tied us together, but now your gone. like a flower petal in the wind, you were beautiful. i miss you. i never cherished the time we had and now its gone. and i don't know how to waste my time besides sitting here staring at the clock.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Blacksmith I

Red, orange, yellow glowing into white. Sparks and embers, roaring flames and glowing coals. Contained within furnaces and spilling out of ladles in molten water falls. Burning coal, singed skin and hair, smoking wood, sweat; smells filled the room. Threatening to join with the ever present smoke to smother those inside. Smoke and metal dust curled lazily in thermal updrafts from the melting metal. Constant clanging was the rhythm to a harmony of cackling flames, steaming oil and hissing water; boiling as white hot metal was plunged into it. Leaping in the air to scald the unsuspecting apprentice. There was no melody to the cacophony of hard work. Perhaps the whine of the lathe, answering a similar call from the sharpening wheel or falling silent to listen to the honer.

A giant of a man dominated the cluttered room. His arms and chest were as large as they were strong. In unhurried manner he went about his task. A master craftsmen, forming and crafting with each swing of his hammer. He melded metals into instruments of death and life. With long practiced skill he created his works of art.

Although each swing was as unhurried as the last, and his sweat was no more profuse than the torrent with which he was traditionally drenched, the blacksmith was struggling to meet his deadline.

His best apprentice had quit only a week before; unable to stand the harsh work conditions. The blacksmith did not resent this. Not all were as strong as he was. In discipline as well as brawn. But still, he would not be able to satisfy the demands of his clients. He would have to apologize, give them a discount. Send them away. He would do what he must.

He stuck the chunk of metal he’d been beating back into the furnace straightened. He paused a moment to breath and wipe his brow. It was then he realized he was being watched. A goblin was standing in his shop, watching him insouciantly. Something was slightly off with the goblin. His form seemed different somehow. The blacksmith shrugged, he knew little of goblin anatomy, it was probably nothing.

He didn’t normally speak first. But the goblin seemed to be content to let the silence continue forever. “I will be unable to help you. I’m understaffed and overextended as it is.” He was forced to deal with an apprentice who seemed to be trying to dump a vat of molten bronze on to himself and didn’t hear the goblins reply.

The goblin didn’t seem perturbed by this, he was waiting calmly when the blacksmith returned. “I actually came to ask for employment.”

The blacksmith needed workers. “Ever done smithing before?” The goblin shook his head. The blacksmith glanced around the smithy, considering.

“I’m strong and I learn quickly.”

The blacksmith was desperate. “Go pump the bellows.” If the goblin asked for extrapolation he’d not be worth it. But he didn’t, instead he moved quickly over to the forge and grasped the bellows. He pumped in an even, rhythmic manner.

The blacksmith left him there. Moving deftly through the crowded workshop from task to task. He actually forgot the goblin he’d hired extemporaneously. It was sometime later when he returned to that particular forge in order to work on the metal that was now red hot. The goblin was still pumping steadily away.

The blacksmith was taken aback for a moment. He was surprised that anyone who’d never smithed before would continue at such a monotonous task for such a long time. He relieved the goblin and sent him to help one of the apprentices. When he was finished with his task he found the goblin and set him to hammering. He was quickly impressed by the goblins strength and dexterity in wielding the heavy hammer. In fact, as the day wore on, there was little that the goblin failed to impress him in. He quickly passed the lower level apprentices in skill and knowledge; in just one day.

He was the last to leave, staying to help the blacksmith tidy up the forge as the sun set. The blacksmith breathed in deeply as he entered into the wider world. It was good to breath fresh air after being stuck in the shop all day. “You’ll have to come home with me to receive your pay. I don’t keep enough in the shop.” He said to the goblin by his side.

I'm going to completely rewrite this and repost it later. It's way to clumsy right now.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Rain and the night.

Just Pho you.

The wind snatched at his cloak and hat as he stepped out into the lashing rain. It gave up for a moment as he tugged against it. The wide brim of his hat gave him temporary leave from the rain that now fell down. He sacrificed its desultory shelter for a quick glance skyward. Air traffic was light tonight. No surprise there, a pilot would have to be mad to take an airship out in this weather.

He turned at the sound of the door opening and closing behind him. “What are you doing out here? It’s all cold and wet.” It was Michelle; she was holding a petite umbrella in the hopes of staying dry. The petulant wind ruined that possibility by blowing the falling water side ways into her face.

“Wfhau!” She gasped. Shaking the water from her face she addressed him again. “Come back inside.” She tugged at his arm for a moment. He ignored her until she gave up and returned inside.

The rain was running down the back of his neck, down his collar. He revelled in the discomfort for a little while longer; turning he placed his hand on the doorknob. Something inside him revolted at the thought of returning to that den of evil.

Reaching a sudden decision, he turned and walked into the night and lashing rain.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Female Characters

I often wonder about writing female characters. I was for sometime (and still am) in search of a well written female character. I mean two things when I say ‘well written’; the first is simply a well fleshed out character, the second is a good role model. This obviously led to a search for well written male characters, which I found to be much more plentiful. (My experience and scope is limited, I’m not saying that absolutely or empirically.)

The search started in literature and expanded to encompass any story telling medium. I found that in most mediums outside of literature that I’m exposed to, most female characters are little more than sex objects. Finding a three dimensional female character was rare, to find one that I would like my (imaginary) daughters to emulate, I’m not sure I found any. Literature turned out slightly better. I did find quite a few good examples of female characters in both categories. But that isn’t the focus of what I’m trying to say.

I want to write good female characters. And I’ve been trying to do this. But I want to do it the right way. For a while I thought about writing a perfect character. A character that was everything I could ever hope for in a wife. A character that would be the ultimate role model. Which isn’t a bad thing. But I think I could do better. I worry about promoting a false image. That I would build up in not only the minds of my readers but my own as well, a fantasy woman who never has or will exist. People are not perfect. Would I write a male character that is everything I hope to be as a man? I could, but he wouldn’t be relatable or interesting.

I then realized this, I try to make my characters as real as possible. They have virtues that we can aspire to. But they also have vices that we can relate to. I want this to be true of my female characters as well as my male characters. By splintering my ‘perfect woman’ into multiple characters, I’m able to make each one relatable, interesting and realistic. I’m able to fill in the gaps left by removing virtues with vices to struggle with and hopefully overcome.

All that to say, I’m going to be practicing writing female characters for a while. Or just characters in general since they are defined by one another. That is, no character lives in a vacuum. I cannot reveal my character’s true character without other characters to act as foils.

In that vein, here's this.

What drew my attention to her was the sharps rifle on her back. It seemed dissonant to me, a middle aged woman casually carrying such an instrument of death. I’d heard that women had served alongside men during the great war, though who knows if that was true. People didn’t seem so much willing to let history lie as determined to bury it, whether under lies or obfuscations didn’t seem to matter.

As I drew closer I realized that my earlier reference to the rifle as an instrument was apt. It was obviously crafted with the same loving care that a master luthier would put into a cello. It had the long, thin barrel typical of sharps rifles. The stock, separated from the handle by a thumb hole, was connected by flexors designed to improve accuracy and decrease recoil. The chamber was of the revolving type, more common twenty years ago than today. The rifle was crowned by a magnificent scope to which was attached a revolving set of focusing lenses. It was all plain black steel and wood (minus the lenses of course), its utilitarian beauty unadorned by gilt or fancy patterns.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

The End

The crowd was a painting. A still picture, forever the background to this event. The soundtrack was paused, silence filled the gap left by the crowd. Time slowed. Stopped. The blood on Aita’s hands ceased to drip to the ground. Nyx knew that that image would never fade. Aita standing there, Melinoe’s dead body cradled lovingly in his arms. Strange to think that he’d been the one who’d taken her life.

Death had been inevitable for Melinoe. But Aita had still offered her redemption. To remake her. To create her as she was meant to be.

Time began to flow again. Aita placed Melinoe’s gently on the ground. The crowd began to murmur as he straightened.

Thanatos felt no shame at having fled. He’d stumbled upon Melinoe while on the way to release someone. She’d taken up the offense immediately; launching into a violent attack. Thanatos had never even fought before, apparently Melinoe had. She was obviously far beyond his skill level, not that that was saying much; but the fight was actually fairly even. In fact, Thanatos soon realized that he was much more powerful than her; he was faster, stronger and had better reflexes. The only reason that he didn’t kill her immediately was that he couldn’t. He managed to find an opening early on and thrust his sword down through the gap between her clavicle and scapula, straight into her heart. Or he would have except the sword bounced off of her shoulder. She almost overwhelmed him in his surprise. As he defended himself he quickly reevaluated her. She didn’t appear to be wearing any armor. He recovered his poise again and struck at her head. Again, the sword bounced off.

Thanatos realized that he wasn’t getting anywhere. The odds were that eventually Melinoe would get through his guard, and he was unwilling to gamble that he was as impervious to her blows as she was to his. He threw up a barrier and quick-stepped back to the tower.

The sounds of my footsteps rang loud in my ears. Nothing but silence filled the courtyard. Filled the world for that matter. The animals that had rejoiced in sudden spring but moments before had fallen silent, as had the cloud. I wondered if I was too late.

The crowd was strangely lethargic, the energy they seemed to possess only moments before seemed to have suddenly drained out of them. Now they seemed on the verge of fleeing in a blind panic.

The shinigami hardly seemed better. Erebus looked like he was preparing to fight Dispater, the others seemed confused and dispirited. I could hardly blame them; two of their leaders was dead and the remaining one was about to fight their former commander. I felt a stirring of pity mixed with amusement. But then I caught sight of the two dead bodies. The parallels between them were highlighted by the differences. One had been killed by love; the other by hate. One had been laid carefully to rest; the other had been discarded as carelessly as a wilted flower.

Dispater had just recalled his sword when they noticed me. Charon, the first to hear me approaching, gave a cry of amazement. The others turned and reacted with varying signs of surprise. Dispater quickly recovered and called out something lewd to me. I hardly cared, he had no power over me now. I’d been healed.

Erebus growled, deep in his throat, prepared to pounce. He knew not what was going on, but he knew his duty. Again, he was distracted by a cry of surprise. Nyx was staring in wonder at Aita’s body. Erebus kept watch on Dispater out of the corner of his eye as he followed her gaze to where Aita lay. To his surprise, Aita was no longer laying. He was standing stolidly on his feet.

He surveyed the shinigami for a moment, ending on Dispater; who seemed completely dumfounded. “How are you still alive? I killed you!”

Aita faced him evenly, where the sword had been, a gash was torn in his torso. The setting sun glowed behind him, shining through the hole in his body. His voice was calm, quiet but steady. “Yes. And in so doing you killed yourself.”

“You want to fight me? I’ll kill you again!” Dispater waved his sword threateningly.

“Your fight is with me this time.” Erebus stepped forward, brandishing his own weapon.

“No Erebus. You can kill him, but you can’t destroy him. For he is already destroyed.”

He turned to Proserpina, whose miraculous arrival had been all but forgotten by the others. “Now your healing is at hand.” She looked up and met his gaze. “Your curse is lifted.” He smiled at her for a moment before turning back to Dispater. “And your curse is fulfilled. In killing me you destroyed yourself. Now, begone.”

Dispater opened his mouth, but instead of the response he had intended, he emitted a howl of pain and range. The blood that had spattered on him when he stabbed Aita had begun to eat his flesh. It slowly burned through his clothing, through his skin, his muscles, his bones. The shinigami watched as he was burnt alive. In a few moments nothing was left of him.

I woke up to find myself dead, and yet I felt strangely alive. Amazingly alive, more so than I’d ever felt before. Apparently in dying I’d become more than I’d ever been in life. For a long while I lay there, discovering my new body. First came the sounds; the quiet murmur that was life, my own heartbeat, a slight ticking from the room beyond, the singing of birds outside my window. Hadn’t it been winter when I’d died? The smells came next, after my ears ceased to distract me; the clean scent of the bedding, the aroma of fresh bread and the unmistakable smell of spring.

How long had I been dead? I opened my eyes. I was laying in my bedroom feeling incredibly comfortable. The sun was attempting to slide through the slit between the shutters, slowly climbing up the opposite wall. I felt far too alive to lie there any longer.

In a few moments I had satisfied my new found hunger with a light meal of bread and cheese I found ready prepared in the next room. I was just wondering what to do next and where the others were when I remembered Aita’s parting words. “This is not the end.” I trembled as he drew his sword. “We will meet again. Seek me when you return.”

The words had meant nothing to me at the time, yet now I was certain of where to find him.

“Oh my child. Why didn’t you come to me?”

“I didn’t think to. I didn’t know who you were, who you are. When you replaced Dispater I subconsciously linked you to him. I knew that you were sent from God, or at least placed in that position by Him. But I still couldn’t trust you.”

“Instead you trusted Charon?”

“Was that wrong?”

“Not at all. But she wasn’t in a position to heal you. Or truly comfort you since she couldn’t relate at all.”

“But you could.” The question turned into a statement halfway through.

“Yes child. What Dispater did to me was just as violent and perverse as what he did to you. And I was there when he did that.” There was a deep pain in his eyes. A pain Proserpina could relate to but no longer feel. It was gone, he had taken it.

“It seems so hard to reconcile the thought that you were there with what happened; impossible for you to be there and for it to still have taken place.”

“But now you understand. Now you see, I was always there. And the pain was still just as real; Dispater’s act just as vile.”

“That whole time, all that we went through, all that you went through. All for this.”

“Do you think it was worth it.”

She looked into his eyes and saw the love there. A love she only now could comprehend. “Yes.”

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Most People and his brother Other

   People often say things to me like "Most people don't go barefoot in the snow." or "Most people don't climb on the outside of buildings." And I'm determined to began replying with "I'm not most people. In fact, I've often been told that I'm 'not like other people' who I assume is some relation of 'most people' whoever that is.

    That doesn't seem as witty as I intended. Still, forget doing things because it's what other people do. Or not doing things simply because most people don't do that.

    My father often asks "Do you see other people doing that?" As though not observing others doing something is reason enough to not do it myself. Or the Kantian, "What if everyone did what you're doing?" To which I sarcastically reply "They'd be in really good shape." Or "This balcony I'm walking on would break under their weight."

    Anyway. Stay strong being different and doing what's right regardless of the crowd. I'll post the end of the story sometime later. Don't expect anything particularly coherent from me for a while after that.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Some meetings.

“So Erebus, still second in command? Still working alongside Proserpina? I would dearly love to see her again.” In that moment the desire to kill him rose up in me like the snake he was. It would be so easy, his power was hardly more than that of a human now. That he should even mention Proserpina made my blood hot, when he talked of seeing her again it began to boil. I’m afraid I didn’t contain it well, the ground began to shake and the sky to darken. I barely caught myself before things started catching on fire.

“Tread lightly Dispater.”

“Are you threatening me? You’re old commander? If loyalty does not constrain your tongue let fear. Just because I am no longer above you-” He caught himself, “in terms of the shinigami command structure that is; I’ve gained tenfold power since leaving. The distance between us has not lessened but increased.”

His reciprocal threat meant nothing to me. I knew the lie he was telling even if he didn’t. “It must be this new commander. Aita is it? Odd that He didn’t pick you. You were, and still are, the obvious choice.” He took a few steps toward me, his voice growing even softer yet more intense. “There’s still a chance. I can make you commander. Erebus, commander of the shinigami.” I’m not sure if he even expected a response.

Suddenly I saw him for what he was. A poor creature, controlled by lies of his own creation. Too deceived to realize the things he grasped for were forever beyond his reach. In that moment pity doused the fire of my rage. If there was anything I could have done to save him in that moment I would have.

He must have seen the pity in my eyes.

The shinigami were gathered in the dining room. Something that hadn’t happened since the start of the war. Dinner was winding down and conversation was picking up. Aita rose from where he had been sitting at the head of the round table. “Thank you for dining with me tonight.” Silence drifted down from the rafters (past the rising smoke) and settled on the table. “We will not be able to dine together again until after this is finished.”

No one replied. The others still seemed slightly uneasy around their new leader. As did she, Charon admitted to herself. Although uneasy wasn’t the correct word. More… unsure. It wasn’t that Charon distrusted him, she just hadn’t had time to learn to trust him; not after Dispater’s betrayal.

“...I will be releasing her tonight. I know that you don’t understand. But I ask you to trust me, as Proserpina is demonstrating.” Charon had missed the first part of whatever Aita had just said.

He rose and lifted his glass. “To you. And faith in God. We will triumph.” Without waiting for the others he drained his glass and set it (empty) back onto the table. From the look on his face, Charon would have guessed that the liquid he had imbibed had been extremely bitter.

With a lingering glance at those gathered around the table, Aita left the room. A moment later, Proserpina rose to follow him. Charon leapt up and intercepted her just outside in the hall. “What are you doing?” She demanded.

“He said he’d release me. That he’d free me from my curse.” Proserpina replied.

“And you-” Charon cut herself off. Aita was appointed by God. She didn’t doubt him because she didn’t doubt God. Did she?

Floating serenely in the sky, the world looked like an upside down mountain. Some giant had cut it off at its base, flipped it upside down and hung it from an invisible cord, thousands of meters in the air. Out of the center of what would have been its base jutted a gigantic tower. There were no visible cracks, breaks, doors, windows or imperfections of any kind its entire 1000 meter height. At its base (on the north side) was an agora. In the middle of the open space the ground rose up to form a shallow stage 16 meters square.

Melinoe had used the platform to give her speech; it had ironically doubled as her execution platform. Now the shinigami were gathered there, grouped around her dead body.

“This is the man who rules over you.” A voice carried over the crowd. “This murderer who silences those who speak against him.” Charon turned to see where the voice came from. A man was standing on one of the nearby buildings. Just as she located him, he launched himself off, landing lightly on the flagstones.

“We have here an unparalleled opportunity.” His voice carried easily, he was obviously a man used to public speaking. “We’ve lured out this coward, no longer can he hide behind his minions. Fight with me and we can defeat them now.”

He had moved to the front of the crowd and was standing at the edge of the circle, only a few meters from the platform where the shinigami were gathered.

Erebus moved closer to Aita. “Let me destroy him. He turns the people against us.”

“He does but test them, as do I. We will give him a little more time” Aita answered in an undertone. Then he raised his voice to address the man. “Dispater, I commanded you to never return. Leave now.”

Dispater was facing the crowd when Aita addressed him. He span in a fury and spat at the shinigami. “Don’t tell me what to do. You have no power over me. You caught me off guard before. You’re power is no match for mine.”

He moved closer to the platform. He raised his hands and cried aloud, the crowd froze and time stopped. He walked through the shinigami, addressing them individually.

With a flick of his hand Aita freed time and the crowd. “That’s enough Dispater. You’ve had your time. Did any of them join you?” Dispater’s baleful stare, transferred from Erebus, was all the answer Aita received. “Then come, why don’t you pitch it to me?”

“The only chance for you is to bow down before me. To lick the dirt I stand on. If you serve me I will let you live. Otherwise I will destroy you the way you destroyed my daughter.”

“The daughter you never loved. You destroyed her. And she destroyed herself. But it is your time now. Draw your sword.”

Dispater did as he was told. Leaping quickly across the platform he plunged it into Aita’s chest. The sword sank in all the way to the handle, the blade protruding from his back.

Aita hardly seemed to care. Blood ran down the handle, spurting onto Dispater’s hands and chest; but Aita didn’t even cry out. Didn’t move or fall. For what seemed like eternity they stood there, connected by the blade in Dispater’s hands.

Finally, Aita fell forward onto Dispater. Dispater shoved his body to the ground, leaving the sword in it.

“Do you see?” He turned to address the shinigami. “This is the man who thought he could replace me.”

None of the shinigami made an answer.

One more part left.


Kill him ,Kill him. kill the man hiding inside of me the man who takes over when i am too weak to hold him back, i try so hard to hold him back but it is just so hard, as i grow weaker he grows stronger and begins to tear away at the walls i have built to hold him back, and when they collapse i can see him coming for me fists clenched eyes burning with rage his tongue flickering like that of a serpent silently whispering lies telling me everything will be alright he is going to fix all of are problems, he says he is going make me forget the troubles and make all the pain go away. and i will lay there numb with a empty mind for a few moments then the man, no not a man the monster who was hidden inside of my heart for so long begins to depart  and he looks back over his shoulder towards me and smiles knowing his deeds are done leaving me to put the pieces back together.
 as i start to gain feeling the pain returns even worse than before, it cant be avoided. pain will always be there to greet me with open arms, i cant get rid of it, the monster inside of me cant get rid of it. i have heard of one who can but i have no room for him inside of my heart because its occupied by my secret desires and the evil's i cant seem to rid myself of. i could try to make room for the healer but it would hurt i am not sure i want more pain, i have figured out how to cope with what i have at least until something new falls apart in my life but i am sure that if that happens i to will fall apart.

but as the seasons change so does my life. and the little sins that seemed harmless have grown and i am now strangled by their roots. it is no longer a matter of pain but a matter of life, i don't think i can live like this for much longer. that is if you can even call this a life. so with my final breaths i call out to the healer who has waited so close to me for all these years begging and pleading to save me even when it hurt him more than me. as my vision starts to blur i can feel your healing touch freeing me from my sin, YOU EMBRACE ME! and whisper to me "son i LOVE you everything will be OK, you will have no more pain, you will never be lonely because i will be here for you". as i look up towards your face with misty eyes i see my sins wrapped around you neck.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Retroactive Post

Captured. I’d ventured too far and pushed too hard. Now it is time to take the fall.

A knock on the door. The man who’d identified himself to me as Aleksandr (fool! never volunteer information) answers it to let in a tall, dark skinned man. He has jet black hair, highlighted with silver, that hangs almost to his waist. Erebus, vice-commander of the shinigami; the most powerful Er’el, or so he thinks. Someone up there is taking me seriously.

He takes in the room and me with a quick glance. I don’t scare him, I hardly even register on his radar as a threat. Not that I am much, he could kill me with a thought. But he doesn’t scare me either, I have powerful friends.

“So you are Melinoe.” He must have received that misinformation from Aleksandr. I say nothing.

“You’ve killed many, even going so far as trying to kill a shinigami.” He goes on. “The punishment for taking the life of another is to lose your own. Do you have anything to say in your defense?”

I have a lot to say. But not in my defense, my actions need no defense. They are pure and just. I remain silent.

He is still standing above where I am seated at the table. Aleksandr hangs nervously in the background, he had probably expected Mors and is unsure of how to act towards the higher ranking shinigami. Erebus reaches into his robe and pulls out a parchment. He thrusts it into my face so that I can see the high seal prominently displayed in the lower right corner.

“That seal means nothing to me. I don’t recognize either it or your authority. You have no right to rule over us.”

Erebus withdraws the parchment, his response betrays his interest. “And who does?”

“No one! At least no one has a right to force us to submit to them. Maybe if we took a vote and elected someone. But even then, you shinigami aren’t fit to rule over humans.”

“I think we are, but we do not. We do not write the rules. They are written by the great author of the universe.”

“You use clever words to disguise your lies. There is no ‘author of the universe’ or if there is he has no part of us. Even if he was real, what gives him the right to tell us what to do?” He attempts to reply but I cut him off. “But he isn’t. He’s just a lie created by you and believed by the foolish. No more will you use ‘God’ to control us. Even if you kill me, our cause will live on, as will Melinoe.”

“You’re not Melinoe?” Though I can’t see them, I’m sure Aleksandr’s eyes go wide.

I’d said too much. Erebus drops our political discussion. “Of course not,” he addresses Aleksandr. “Melinoe is too smart to be caught so easily. Assuming she exists at all, she may just be a phantom created to lead their cause. Using the very tactics they accuse us of.”

“She’s real. But you’ll never catch her. You’ll never even see her until it’s too late and your doom is unavoidable.” That was safe to say. But now I’m done. I will face my fate silently.

“Death is not the end. For though we die our idea will live on. Death is inflicted upon us by the shinigami. Now, WE use it as a tool. And soon there will be no more death. The shinigami may be immortal, but we can defeat them. Do as I say and we can weaken, we can destroy their grip on us. And then we will be free from death forever. No longer will we be forced to bid goodbye to loved ones. No longer will we watch, helplessly, as the shinigami lead off our brothers, our sisters, our friends to the slaughter…”

The speech ran on but I’d stopped paying attention. I’d heard it before. I’d given it before. Not as well as Melinoe though. We had a good group at this meeting, most would probably join us, and those that didn’t would keep their mouths shut. People no longer trusted the shinigami.

An hour later we stepped out the door into the predawn darkness. The darkness was unnecessary to hide us. Which is just as well since time didn’t seem to matter to the shinigami. What really mattered was the ability of Melinoe’s to conceal our presence. I assumed it had something to do with her being a valkyrie, something she’d shared with me a few weeks before. To think that we had one of them on our side. Our cause actually stood a chance.

“Things are coming to a head. Soon it will be ready. Soon we will strike.”

“And the shinigami will fall.” I completed the thought. Still, doubts incubated inside me, waiting for the proper circumstances when they could hatch into fear.

“There is no need to worry. We will triumph.”

“But there is only you, against all of them.”

“Not only me, there are forces on our side that you know nothing of, and it is best that way.” We continued to our destination in silence.

“...And so I came to you. Is it just me? Are my powers failing.” Thanatos stood in Aita’s garden. Dawn was just breaking and the first rays of the sun turned the white flowers surrounding them pink.

Only Aita’s silhouette was visible to Thanatos, the rising sun obscuring his features. “No, it’s not your fault… you were trying to see with your ears. Using the wrong tool for the job. You could not release Melinoe because she is not a human to be released.”

“Not a human?” Thanatos was thoroughly perplexed… what was she then? “What is she then?”

“A shinigami. A valkyrie.”

“But…” Thanatos trailed off. As far as he’d known all the valkyrie served Aita. He could name all three. Was there one he’d forgotten? But no, none of the others knew Melinoe either.

“She was not created the way you were, the way the others were. She’s an abomination. A bastard sent to wreak havoc until it is her father’s time to reveal himself.”

“Her father?”“You don’t need to worry about him. I will deal with him myself. As I did before.” Aita moved past Thanatos towards the stairwell, as he moved out of the light it seemed to stay upon his head for a moment. “Come, I will teach you and the others how to deal with Melinoe.”

Thursday, February 20, 2014

A round, the table.

Proserpina sat up suddenly. The nightmare clung to her for a moment before releasing its grip and fading into the shadows. How often would she have to relive that moment? How long would she bear this curse?

As usual, Charon’s conversation with Mors was less than scintillating. He always seemed slightly evasive, less than willing to answer her questions. His last reply had brought Charon up short. What if he was right? It seemed like it didn’t matter at the moment. They still knew less than nothing about this mysterious woman who was destroying their world. Their world, the humans world. It seemed as though the humans were growing increasingly resentful of the shinigami.

Mors finished his slice of cheesecake and looked up, Charon had grown strangely silent.

Proserpina stood behind her, looking tired and disheveled; fitting for one of the leaders of the shinigami. Charon’s gaze shifted from the floor to Mors, and then followed his own over to Proserpina. She slid off the counter and moved quickly around it to embrace Proserpina. Mors sat there for a moment, then stood and left. After a moment Charon asked, “do you want to talk?”

Proserpina didn’t answer. She’d already talked, already confided. There was nothing more to say.

Mors stood in Aita’s study. Study? Hardly. Aita stood up from where he was stooping in the dirt. His hands were dirty, but he didn’t wipe them off as he approached Mors. “I need you to go. There’s a man named Alexander, I want you to meet.”

“To release?”

Aita didn’t answer for a moment. He leaned his head slightly to the right. His gaze was still as piercing as ever. Mors didn’t try to hold it, or even meet it. Instead he stared at Aita’s dirt caked hands. Shinigami didn’t get their hands dirty… or they hadn’t while Dispater was boss. “No. You just need to talk to him. You’ll see.”

It was Nyx for once. Mors was glad for that. Nyx was quieter and less… overbearing than Charon; which made her easier to talk to. She looked over her shoulder and smiled at Mors as he entered. Her white teeth accenting or accented by her black face.

“Where were you?” she asked as he sat down across from her.

The dining room was too big for this sort of thing. Mors preferred the kitchen table. “Aita

sent me on a job. He wanted me to meet a human.”

“It all went smoothly?” She set down the book she’d been reading and gave her attention to him. Realizing he wanted to say something.

He took it and held it a moment before replying. “Yes, but not like you’d expect…” She didn’t cut in, just waited. “He’s slightly shorter than average, about half a head shorter than me and stocky. His skin is a shade lighter than Thanatos’s. Dark hair of course, kept short. Slightly slanted eyes. Stocky from muscle though, not fat. Alexander Embargos.”

Nyx waited a moment before asking the obvious question. “You say is. Did he not shed his fleshly body?”

Mors stood up and walked to the middle of the table. He threw another log on the fire and rotated the tea kettle above it, shaking it gently as he did to make sure there was water in it. He returned to the outside of the table and sat down, closer to Nyx this time. “No. I just talked to him. He’s extremely intelligent and he wants to help us.” Nyx looked puzzled. “It doesn’t make much sense to me either. But orders..” He trailed off.

“Did he have any information?”


“The murders? Why they’re fighting against us? Refusing to leave?”

Mors shook his head.

He replaced the book in front of her before replying. “The strangest part is this, as I was leaving, a woman tried to- no, did- shoot me in the head.”

Nyx was too surprised to follow that with a question. Mors wasn’t the type to press on, so they sat in silence for a while. Finally Nyx found what seemed to be an appropriate question. “Who?”

“I don’t know.”

Their discussion continued a week later. This time in at the small kitchen table. “I went to see Alexander again today.” Mors knew that Nyx already knew that, she had obviously been waiting in the kitchen for him to get back. She didn’t reply, she didn’t need to. “He’s been watching a lot, he notices almost everything that goes on down there. I think he has other people helping him.”

It was strange that he was reporting to Nyx instead of Aita, but Aita didn’t need reports, he always just knew what was going on. “He blames all this on a woman called ‘Melinoe’, says that she’s been trying to use the murders to turn the population against us. I’ve never even heard of her have-” a whistle interrupted him. The tea kettle he’d put on to heat up water was boiling.

It stopped before he could stand up. “I haven’t. Maybe he made her up.” Charon spoke up as she moved the kettle off the stove.

Nyx greeted her as Mors poured himself a cup of tea. “What does Aita say?” Charon shot at him as he returned to his seat.

“Nothing yet. Or, he probably does. But I haven’t spoken to him since I got back.”

“Oh.” It didn’t bother Mors that Charon had intruded on his and Nyx’s conversation. There was never any strife between the shinigami. Except Dispater- Mors jerked his thoughts back from that dark subject, but he still wondered how Proserpina was doing. She only ever opened up to Charon, Mors had no idea why.

Nyx suddenly stood up. “I have to go, I have a job tonight. I’ll be back… Hopefully soon.” Mors said nothing. Nyx yelled back a quick “thanks” in reply to Charon’s well wishes and then was gone.

“Is that all?” Charon asked.

Mors ignored her, sipping placidly from his tea cup.

“Did Alexander have anything important to say?” She was relentless.

“Yes… Maybe.” Mors replied.

“What’s that supposed to mean.”

“Alexander thinks she’s the one who tried to shoot me.” Mors stood up and went to the fridge. He retrieved a platter of cheesecake and placed it in front of his seat.

“Who?” He didn’t answer. “Oh.” It dawned on Charon as Mors grabbed a plate and fork. Melinoe of course. The mysterious stranger who was trying to destroy their world. She had been the one trying to destroy Mors.

(Some other things. This thing's supposed to be a short story, but it keeps getting longer and more involved. We should be about halfway done though. I'm pretty much posting these as I write them so some stuff might not match up. I'll go through and edit them all when I'm done.... maybe.)

Monday, February 17, 2014

I am frustrated with blogger.

After spending hours trying to change the background of the blog I've come to this conclusion. Blog spot is crap.

The writing tools provided are un-ergonomic and anti-intuitive. It doesn't work well with the other writing system by google (drive) and makes it a hassle to import. This might seem like a small thing, but the writing is the whole point of the blog isn't it? Fail at this and everything else seems pointless.

The page customization is great. Except that you apparently can't import a custom background. Or maybe I'm just smart enough. But I have a blog because I want to write, not because I want to figure out how to use bloggers over complicated system. For example, this picture
is my laptop background, it fits the screen just fine. Blogger shrinks it until it only takes up half the screen and then tiles it. I have yet to find a way to change this.

I thought there was something else. But nothing comes to mind at the moment.

Okay, my denouncement of blogger as crap may be a bit hyperbolic. But I am extremely frustrated. If some highfalutin google employee happens to read this. Please fix this problem.

I tried wordpress the other day, just exploring options. It seemed even worse to me. They wanted money to do the smallest customization. Not yet at least. Not while this is free.

I guess I should be happy with that. At least this is free. So I guess you get what you pay for. Maybe I shouldn't complain, I'm just kind of disappointed to see what could be a good thing failing at being more than mediocre.

Guess Weebly's next on the list.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Trains (a tribute to Levi the Poet)

Noah and I want to start screaming at people. So if you read this, the bold is were you scream.



Levi said “Well ma’am, my problem is that I think too much, and all of this chain smoking leads to chains of thought that I can’t turn off – now how can you help me with that?”

And oh how I can relate to that. I don't smoke but sometimes I sit in my truck at this intersection for what feels like years as trains of thought go by. And I always think that if I catch one of them and let my thoughts ride those rails to the end I'll find resolution in that station. Like thinking is the solution to our problems. Like I could dream up a perfect world and then move there. But instead I sit motionless, as idle as the engine in my truck, blocked by these trains, by these thoughts that won't let me pass.

And these trains never end, there's always one more car until I jump to a different track. To scared to play chicken with these thoughts that drive me insane.

Like thinking is the solution to my problem. But thinking is my problem.

Maybe it's just tautological but I've got a ways to go before I trade in these thoughts for silence.

I've got a ways to go before I give up and let other people guide my trains into station.

I want to conduct this train myself and I refuse to let others do it for me. So until I run out of coal I'll keep chugging forward to a destination I can't see. And I will fight every robber along the way that tries to hijack these thoughts from me.