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Gregory K Nelson Mar 2019
Inspired by the late British soldier, activist, and explorer Henry Worsley …

I wish for the ice.
Wish for it endless.
Blue and black and white and gleaming.
Hard ice sparkling under a cold distant Sun
that rises and falls for me,
for you.

I Fight against but welcome Wind.
Wish to be a Good Man standing, walking,
cold, hungry, miserable but feeling that burn,
that burn of the existence of my destiny for Survival,
because I know better now that Survival is the capitalization of "god."
I ponder my place in Evolution, and feel in my chest the sad presence of a lonesome Ghost,
Feel that out there somewhere is a point where light and life are frozen,
but melting in Sunlight into sweet fresh water I wish to drink.

To walk further then further then beyond my conception of "Further",
navigating into the lethal helicopter-less void.
Legs aching then swaying then robotic they swing,
a perfect instrument of Man's will to freedom
but still simply humble rambling limbs.

I wish for the ice.
Wish for it endless.
Blue and black and white and gleaming.
Hard ice sparkling under a cold distant Sun
that rises and falls for me,
for you.

I Fight against but welcome Wind.
Wish to be a Good Man standing, walking,
cold, hungry, miserable but feeling that burn,
that burn of the existence of my destiny for Survival,
because I know better now that Survival is the capitalization of "god."
I ponder my place in Evolution, and feel in my chest the sad presence of a lonesome Ghost,
Feel that out there somewhere is a point where light and life are frozen,
but melting in Sunlight into sweet fresh water I wish to drink.

To walk further then further then beyond my conception of "Further",
navigating into the lethal helicopter-less void.
Legs aching then swaying then robotic they swing,
a perfect instrument of Man's will to freedom
but still simply humble rambling limbs.

This is my small history, and I realize why men
rarely make history alone:
The loneliness is unbearable,
but I bear it alone in this endless land of cold empty canvas.

To be so alone and close to death is to know it no longer matters if you are human.

To know nothing beyond the dark howling night and the strange redness amongst the stars Tonight.
To welcome the light but not care.
To push to keep moving anyway, slipping, stepping, determined with the sole goal of moving forward regardless of fire, or food, or how the bird flies.

In the Wind
I hear the band playing.
I feel my eyes weeping.
I feel my feet leaping.

Skipping forward, "progress not perfection," but remembering too much sweating is deadly once you stop moving it can freeze your sweaty ***** solid, gotta to be careful, but always moving.

My God, to scan the sun on the horizon
see the young women on the beach in bikinis,
but to move your legs with them.

To dance with hallucinations.
To live as a victim,
but be the crime.

To be nimble and quick and sing to God's children.
To be righteous and strong in the winds of God's vengeance.

No song other than a dream of tomorrow's music.
Nothing to visualize or interpret.
No more worries for Death or Life.

No "Being"
just transparent,
A line never drawn.
An infinite negative number without digits or decimals or logic or rhyme.

You can't fix your broken past but still the Wind moves you,
or so the naked ex-lover moans as she writes,
unseen in the green growing tall grass.
She hides but she beckons.

The jail cell door swings open with a unoiled hospital sound,
open to a world I must recreate on my own from another place.
That **** symphony of a thousand clicking locks keeps playing bad blues,
I must start playing with that Band, and jam the music slowly into a form I can reconcile with my Heart.

Elsewhere the Wind breaks the sad old trees and they fall and break the houses and break the people in them and the people break my concentration.

The tornado holds no sympathy but only releases it to the news channels.
Its an odd weapon,
a brutality,
a misdemeanor of the Divine.

Life is Suffering,
its Chaos,
its more meat for the animals,
it's the frailty of old age and
its the helplessness of newborn youth.
Its Beauty, and carnage, and ******, and work, and Love
and paying taxes.

And the stars pierce the midnight and find me,
they glance and they smile and they talk.

They say:
"You be grateful, young Man.
You walk."

                                                                  - March 2019, Siesta Key, FL
Fantastic profile of Henry Worsley by the legendary journalist David Grann:
Gregory K Nelson Mar 2019
Thirty-nine and single
and its been this way four years.
A few flings on the side,
a little skin to skin win,
jumbled kind words in passing,
bubbled emoji smiles,
a morsel from your crumbling heart,
a giant bite of your sin.

I've never been the cheater.
Had my fun when things were undefined,
kept my exes as friendships,
but never crossed the invisible fence line.
Never broke that kind of promise,
never ate the fruit from that Tree of Knowledge

Never been the cheated as far as I know,
I wasn't born to play that cuckold role.
I am just the grateful accomplice,
a secret man-shaped hole in your life,
you speak of only with that man.
We bump and rub our egos,
while you make more sensible plans.

I am a gift that knows nothing or generosity,
humility that swings with fists for fences,
salvation with a price tag,
water for the hungry,
sunshine on a frigid Universe,
the morality of a well meaning fool.

"I can get by on little or nothing."
And I quit my job without reason.
I've got no paper in my pocket,
and not much working for me,
on the street.

I'm not a vegetarian,
I like the smell,
the flesh and soul,
of sizzling meat.

I am "woke" in a way that is not yours,
Woke to the true and endless fight against injustice.
Woke to pragmatic workable solution,
But I expect people to laugh off
or confront a microaggression.
Your complaints mean little to me.
I was born with an incurable disease.
And "if I was half the man I used to be,
I'd take a flamethrower" to your safe spaces,
to your shout downs,
when they threaten free speech.

My hands and arms are strong,
but my legs are weak.
My life is weak.
My car is scraped, dented,
and full of paint and ash.
I quit my last job without a reason.
The next one will be worse.
I owe more than I earn,
preach more than I learn.

My jacket is torn.
My sweater is fifty years old.
My feet are rough beach rocks.
My jeans sag below an alcoholic's gut.
My teeth are yellow nicotine.
My knees crack.
My *** bleeds.
My hands shake.
My **** quakes.

My back aches,
threatening violent mutiny.
My beard is just beginning
its unstoppable transition to gray.
My sweatshirt reeks of ****.
Nights sweats flood my sheets every night,
whether we are together or alone.

My eyes are above it all,
window to my soul,
so much more apt and able,
to produce tears.
In that one way,
I have grown.

This Soul is the unforgiving ice
of a small pond
in a giant winter meadow.
The yellow grass is dead,
but keeps its head above the snow.
The evergreens sway solemn in brutal wind.
The pond is safe to skate on,
If you don't fall too hard.

As we move towards the work of Love
the internet makes a shrewd habit,
of taunting our loneliness.
It supports an army of strippers,
sending stock requests to be "friends,"
with the hope a man might feel loved,
just enough to surrender Visa digits.
Lost girls courting lost boys,
twelve dozen at a time.

My heart wails for affection,
As all hearts must do.
But the wail is just another song now,
passed by painted fingernails
on the local radio dial,
sung only to myself,
like an organist practicing hymns,
in an empty church at midnight.
Gregory K Nelson Sep 2018
The water spills down warm then hot then cool again
And when I slide down the shower wall and find myself seated
The drain between my knees ******* down the city funk
And I examine the sidewalk blisters on the souls of my feet
I realized yes it happened again, but it is over now
And I breathe deep, then deeper, trying to feel the medicine
of oxygen, of ginger ale in my broken throat, of bourbon, of lithium.

There are things only Angels can do, but their are plenty of Angels in Brooklyn.
Avie bouncing round the safe house, a bubbly "spirit in the night."
Will Powers slowly circling the felt, speaking softly of cinema,
The atomic dogs in and out of the bathroom, the scent of Columbia circling them.
Tony in the corner whispering in ears, his eyes on the till, his hands missing his Les Paul.

I feel it again,
In my legs, in my groin, in my hands,
In lands far away,
In visions of alternative days,
In dead ocean waves,
In blood soaked caves.

I feel like Crazy Janie
Making love in the dirt.
Like a child raised in the
Spanish country side by wolves
Putting on his first clean shirt.

Now I know I'm going down, and not just because she's not around.
It's because I find myself commanding a night brigade and there's still 5 hours till sunrise.
Big man assist me please, I got turf stains from Rugby on my knees.
I got Angels around me, but they don't want to hug, they don't want to make love,
it may be time to consider, my aging face, and my overdrive pace.

So I settle for Rock And Roll.
Follow Will to his roof with Strategy Matt.
And the city was bright shining
In red, white, and blue light.
I spun slowly and widened my eyes,
a little dance on top of the world,
pumped my biceps and pecs,
I unfurled and twirled.

You can't start a fire with out a spark, girl.
You can't truly be ambitious unless you are prepared to love the whole world.

Working out in the beer cooler.
If I’m gonna lift boxes for twelve
dollars an hours might as well get
exercise, might as well feel that
Trapezoid pump and bump,
Fifteen left pumps of the thirty
Pack, then thirteen rights,
Step, renegotiate my balance,
Step, feel the calf, the toes, strike a pose.

Sweat cascading, anticipating
A delivery, an emancipation
From the slow tick of clock.
Make a label, flip a bottle,
Wave your racing thoughts,
To the periphery, make a six pack.

Customers - man the register.
Make it beep, penny keep,
Penny leave, find a box,
Watch the clock, slow your
Movement speed your mind.
Bet on how many more through
the door, flip the lights and sign.

The last day of a manic episode is a bad day to pick up a paycheck.
The money is like oxygen to the flame.
It can reignite the inferno, leaving you another moth dancing on tongues of fire.
Or just a slightly over weight man in his late thirties flinging darts at a machine at the Blind Rhino.

Can't go on a date in Manhattan without ending up in Brooklyn a sleepless forty-eight hours.
Can't go to South Norwalk for **** and not spend the rest on beer and pool.
The night before I got fourteen hours sleep.  It was over.

It started again.  The walking the talking the smoking the spending the joking the posing
A manic puppet on the string of his own euphoric string, a lonely space cowboy
chucking faked darts at a machine that records me.
Buy me a whiskey.  This is my America too.

I of the insane, the crazies, the water heads, the criminals, the ******,
We will all "walk like Brando into the sun."
We will rage, riot, rebel, and revolt,
And walk the highways together,
Under a relentless sun,
And keep walking at night in the cooler soft light of the moon,
and keep walking at sunrise,
Through blizzards, and golf ball hail,
We will walk through the raining of giant toads if we have to,
and life will turn into a movie,
where all the cameras belong
to us.
Gregory K Nelson Sep 2018
Brown hair
The rare type that cascades soft.
Perky chest,
Smile like a warm wave.
Little back pack and a purse too.
She’s on the move.

Tight jeans,
Fitted shirt,
But the kind of eyes,
You could make love to in the dirt.

Should have tried a line,
Instead I stepped out for a smoke.
Spying her from the frame,
Then up,
She strolls into frame.

She smiles at me.
“Hi,” she smiles.
She strolls.
“I’m disappointed you’re leaving.” I announce with strange authority.
“Do you work here?” She really wants to know.
“No.” I grin.
She smiles at me the smile of an excited dolphin,
Turns away,
And walks on.

I stare at her ***,
And wonder if there might be
A loving
All powerful
After all.
Gregory K Nelson Dec 2016
and I, like everyone, f**ked into existence
riding on the guilty **** of my elders
for whom my fate replaces

and I, like everyone, created in that ***** zone
of guilt and lust and floating downstream
constructed of taste and smell, of color

and I, like everyone, was chosen from that smoky crowd
among the legs, hair, and anger
chosen from them like a bright shining star

and I, like everyone, fell from my chair
to a lovely lonely bed of stale desire
of forgotten names and a hidden voice

- 1999
Gregory K Nelson Dec 2016
Addiction is the Great Deceiver,
Depression is The Liar,
Self-pity is The Trixter,
Who cuts your Soul with wires.

Let me be Grace.

Let me climb beyond me towards the blue,
Rung after naked rung and look down
Before I arrive at the sun soaked ledge
To reach for my brother’s stretched,
Bird pecked, and bloodied human palm.

Stand at her door knocking,
Let her do all the talking.
Break the fire on the ice,
Refuse the dragon’s vice.

Girl, let me be Grace.

Let me breathe and run through the cornfield
Naked in the light of a gently dying moon,
Slide like snow on a windshield moving down
The highway with State Troopers in pursuit.

He stands on strong legs.
He kneels then he begs,
Making love like a slow dance,
He can even though he can’t.

Pray, let me be Grace.

Let me die.
Let me cry.
Let me fly and
Feel her soothing.

I want to know.
I want to grow.
I just want it to slow.
But I'm grooving.

I want to be me.
I want to be free,
But I’m bouncing my knee.

Forget it.  We're Grooving.

Let me be the wind on my own back.
Let me lead my enemy on an attack.

Let me love
Let me learn.
Let my soul
Be Reborn.

Make me live.
Make me give.

**** my words and
Silence my will.

Please let me be Grace.
Gregory K Nelson Nov 2016
I’m pretty sure there is no more alcohol in this house, I drank it dry, but I got plans to refill the coffers of the estate in a distant land some call the future when I am old, too old to do much but write checks, sign forms, ride on spaceships of my own design, my making, a phsy phi movie, with the masters, with Nash and Sendak, with Moratta and the Spells, with Shug Knight and his dynamite, with Tu Pac the moment that last bullet struck gold ...

The boundaries of who you are, how you act, start slipping away ever so slowly.  At first you just think you are in a better mood, and maybe that’s all you are.

Did I know I was in a manic episode?  How could I not know?  How could I not look for help instead of whatever insanity I let myself travel towards? How how how .... do I sound like an Indian? Does that question offend you?

Just me in the car. It had been just me for days.  Reaching out to social media occasionally to wave my crazy flag.

My stomach felt like water was boiling inside it.  Angry butterflies that would not stop their painful flutter.  The fear, the agitation, anxiety I usually call it, but its more like being perpetually ...

Sometimes I realize that my personality is basically the jail house ***** of perpetual introspection

Self involvement is probably more accurate. Introspection is the dumb self grasping at explanations of evolving memories as they pile up always too fast, always out of reach, always always always then you just ******* die one day.

And that's it isn't it. Whatever else happens that will be my story.

We can never understand what it is because it keeps changing them we all eventually die and that's it.

It's pretty ******* terrifying.

It will make you hide things.

Wishing for a better past is futile
a form of the ultimate folly:
feeling sorry for yourself.
It makes you feel pathetic.
Especially if you actually are pathetic.
If your life is a failure of your own making
In cooperation with a mental illness
Which is making me feel so sad and pathetic
I can think of little else but how pathetic I am

But my present seems futile.
There is not much in my reality that is hopeful even when I’m in a better mood.
In short, my life seems hopeless.
I don’t have a job, or a mate, and I’m not likely to find either one any time soon.
I have barely any work experience
I’m 36 years old.  
I live with my parents.
I have a bad case of bipolar disorder and a bad case of ADHD and I know that makes it unlikely I will ever be able to succeed at anything.  Of course one of the illnesses might be right now telling me things are worse than they seem.

I am suicidal but afraid to **** myself.  I wonder if I’ll ever find the desperation or the courage.  As I get older my situation seems worse and worse.  I cant seem to get myself to act to change it.  I can’t ACT.  I can’t DO.  How is this possible?  how am I like this?  How? How? How?

Writing something seems like some kind of action.
Something productive, in theory.
This is what I come up with.
Bad poetry.
Worse than usual.

Just try to write something anything
feel the keys bounce
remember what its like to say something
taste it
let it flow
let it go
what can’t I let go?
what blocks?
just bounce bounce bounce
no one will read this but I need to find that hidden somber knowing inner voice
no matter how fake it is
etch it out
send it out
to the world
let it fly

There has to be something to say hasn’t there?
Write about a manic episode … how to begin? What moment to draw out?

Gotta try not o ******* all day tomorrow
Gotta try
can’t promise anything
this is who I am
I hate myself, of course
how could I not

And on and on and on
Just writing anything
writing “writing”
like Jack Nicholson in The Shining
Jack is a dull boy
Jack is a dull boy
Jack is a dull boy
God help me
but he won’t
of course not
this is a warm fuzzy version of hell
not that bad
except the self-loathing
oh God why me the self-pity
typing typing typing
It would not surprise me
if I never really wrote anything
just a total loser
jerking off all day
not working
living with my parents
watching teenagers **** on the internet
why am I like this?
How can I change myself?
I want to change myself
I really do
God help me
but he won’t
just on and on
nothing gets done
I am nothing
I want to **** myself
but I don’t have the guts
I want to die
I want to die
I say it all the time its mostly about the shame of who I am I can’t stand it it goes on and on

everything bad starts out innocently enough
rock before the roll
this is not writing I can’t write
am I just too ******?
would I write anything sober?
I live my life in a hell not quite of my making
I want to die I want to die I want to die
I want to live I want to live I want to live
type type type
this can’t be my life
I say that over and over to myself
because it is in a way hard to believe
but here it is
at least I’m typing typing typing
simple thoughts like
I don’t like my ******* life
maybe If I could just accept it the pain would dwindle
the loathing would subside
but how can I accept this ****
at least I’m typing typing
too ******
****** dumb
too dumb to think of anything worth writing
just a self hat clusterfuck
of a brain
I want to finally die of shame
mercy please
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