He longed for New York, for home. He was drifting along in a sea of uncertainty. His future, unknown. His present was murky at best and he lived day to day, one day at a time. He had become comfortably numb by it all, brought down. The heavy weight of life took it’s toll on him, aged him horribly. Four years had gone by and it felt like forty. He had no idea what was next for him but he embraced it fully, head on and let it envelop him whole.
He once had hopes and dreams just as much as the next person. Like the next sucker, he thought. He was a bitter and broken man. He loved, lost and lucked out. He was drowning in the bottle of booze that became his life. He wrote little, fucked little, did little, was little. He had little to show for his life, his accomplishments had become few and far between. He had went to college to learn answers and only left with questions and a piece of paper that was his diploma. He had no idea what he wanted to be, but he wanted that person to be somebody.
Disillusioned by fame and glory became his life story. He was sorry he never hoped to achieve more. Fear and shame kept his talents hidden and his mouth shut. His heart was battle scarred, buried deep within his chest, guarded and fenced off far from the world to see the tears it shed. His soul shattered, scattered, tattered, torn to pieces. He was lost within himself, trapped and had no way out.
Most would say he was his own worst enemy and worst critic. How could anyone love this poor hapless hopeless man, when he didn’t even love himself? He was surrounded by people daily, swimming in a sea of urchins and yet he never felt more alone in his life. He traversed the many pathways that life had to offer up to him and each time he ended up on the road to going nowhere fast. He would sit alone a lot and drink himself to sleep. Each night thinking how did this become my life? Each night dreaming of something better, of hope, of home.
If he could go back and do it all again he’d say, he’d do it all the same. He was dooming himself to repeat the same mistakes, the same failures that led him to this point. He was happy with the same, mundane. He learned a little each time but asked for the same result in return. He was a glutton for punishment, a metaphorical sadomasochist. In the end all he had was himself and who better to punish than yourself, than having to deal with yourself?
Sure he had friends but for some reason they were never enough. Nothing could compare to the love of a good woman he thought. He seemed to look for love in all the wrong places and loved too often, too quickly, at the drop of a hat. He wore his heart on his sleeve, ready, willing and determined to give it away with every single handshake. But it was never enough, he was never enough and he never knew why.
He felt like he was a ghost. He was disappearing from the world. As each day passed he felt as if he were disappearing. He could stand in front of the mirror for hours and stare, just stare deep into his own eyes. Looking at himself, trying to see the real him but looking back at him was a stranger. He no longer recognized the man he had become. His world was in shambles and he became a cipher in it.
He wanted, tried but felt like he failed at every turn. He just wanted to make it all go away, all his pain, all his suffering and so he drank, he reached for bottle after bottle and numbed his pain. It was bliss but it was fleeting. He just wanted to hit a reset button and try again elsewhere. He lived in a few different states over the past four years but they still felt the same. He was trapped in a world of shit and he needed to get out. He longed for New York, for home, back when the world made sense.
He knew for so long what he wanted to do, what he wanted to be. But unfortunately something happens when we age, we get wiser. Our hopes and dreams seem to fade quickly with time because we settle into the fact that we will never achieve those far-fetched infantile dreams. We become realists. He wasn’t always a negative person but when a person actually lives life they change their perspective quickly. No longer did the world feel in front of him, it was ahead of him, but it left him behind.
Change is a harsh mistress, it happens whether we want it or not and it’s a real bitch most times. He was disgruntled by the fact that the world was changing, people were changing. He was changing. He turned to film originally for immortality, to be remembered forever, long after he was gone. He went to film school to discover his art and his many multitudes of hidden talents only to learn film had changed without him. It was no longer about story, art or substance. He grew up with this mentality from watching the greats that were the products of film schools of the seventies. He lived in that world, in the world he was in however, film belonged to studios, and it belonged to studio executives that were without imagination. The auteur dream was dead, friends. His dreams were dead. Art died, and all that remained was business.
Disillusioned by it all he graduated broken hearted, cursed with a diploma he’d do nothing with. He learned something from his disillusionment though; he learned there was something left in the world, words. A school tried to rob him of his imagination, showing and never telling. However there was something they couldn’t do. The products of the institution were uninspired by words, no emphasis on them at all, soulless. With that realization he realized even though they took everything from him there was something they could never take from him, his words. It was all he had left but damn it, those words would always be his, even if he had to take them to his grave.
The power of words will always have more imagination and provoke more thought then anything that can be seen. There was more interpretation to them. Words spoke to him daily. Suddenly the culmination of all his schooling became clear. There was a glimmer of hope amongst all the sadness. He still had one love in his life left, words. Film could always still have it’s meaning, just like any first love. It will always be there, but it means something different now. You never forget your first love. First love is bittersweet, it is fleeting, but its memory is engraved in you forever. However, he was with his new love now, hoping it would last a lifetime. Time will tell.
Words though don’t come easy. They are not without emotion. They are not without inspiration. Words don’t come easy even though they are always there. A writer is an artist whose hands are the brushes and he paints pictures with ink, in black and white. Anyone can craft a sentence but it takes an artist to string the words together and create something that transcends the words on a page, the letters that create those words. To go beyond meaning. Anyone can speak, but speaking words uninspired mean nothing. It’s what the words stand for. An idiot can speak, but an artist can create meaning with his, no matter how many or how long or little and sometimes by saying nothing at all.
He longed for home, for New York. He knew when his time was coming. He knew when it was time to pack his bags and go home. He longed so badly for years and now it was his time. He was headed home, finally after so long, he could rest. He could go back to the beginning where it all made sense. He could go home. He missed it for far too long, he missed the falls and the colored trees; the very scent in the air lifted his soul. He missed the campfires and the contemplation that went with it as he would stare into the dancing flames and search his soul for deeper meaning and he knew it would be there he would find it, at home.
Tears welled up in his eyes as he wrote this, dreaming of home. The story of he; the artist’s struggle was not etched in black and white. There is more meaning if you know where to look between the lines, you’ll find it there and that is where you’ll find him someday. He’ll be there for an eternity. Long after he’s gone, long after the aimless wandering and meandering through this dismal, abysmal thing we call our lives. He found his immortality finally, past the uncertainty of life. He isn’t sad when he weeps now; he’s found a new happiness, a new life, a new love, a new meaning. Please don’t be sad for him, he’ll be at ease, at peace. He was longing for home no longer, he was finally going there soon, and he was on his way. He was finally headed home. This is the story of he. He was the story of an artist; he was the story of me.