Tag Archives: death

Live long and prosper.

27 Feb

As the vast bells of the internet are tolling, Leonard Nimoy, the once and forever Spock, is dead. Gifs of numerous episodes are spreading through Imgur and Reddit, clips from Simpsons episodes and Big Bang Theory appearances are retweeting their way across twitter, and celebrity after celebrity after news site after commentary blog after cooking blog after Facebook wall are sharing their remembrances and goodbyes. Everyone’s got their memory to claim – even the LA zoo, something as far in my mind from Star Trek as can get.

And honestly, my first response to all these shares and reposts and drudging up of decades-old publicity photos was to be rather angry.

How dare all these people take a figure’s death as a means to their fifteen seconds of limelight! How dare they try to re-associate themselves with a man that many of them hadn’t spoken of in years? How dare they all take Spock’s death and tie it to their own paltry claim to momentary fame?

And then I realized how goddamn idiotic I was being and got over it. Because all these sudden up-croppings of old memories around Nimoy and Spock – well, they’re all amazing.

A man is dead and people across time and space are talking about his life. Here is a man, this trending hashtag says, who did something. Look at all these instances people remember. Here, as Spock. Here, as a guest. Here, as an ordinary man. Here, as a hero who happened to be spotted having a good time at the goddamn L.A. zoo.

And imagine that – leaving this world as someone solidly appreciated. Imagine if the world’s response to your death was to well and truly miss you, so much that they cling to remnants of your existence by talking about your clever lines and generous nature, by posting pictures of your proudest moments and your happenstance smiles.

I think this is one best kinds of mourning.

But to be fair, it is one of the best of men to mourn.

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The Fear-Killer

4 Jan

The Fear-Killer

I fear.

But fear is the mind-killer

(so Dune says)

so I accept boredom instead,

the mind-number

that will let me flit from thought to thought

without falling in so many of these dredges,

high as a kite from not paying attention

’cause if I can’t see you

then you can’t see me

(so says the rules of childhood)

so it must be the same with pain too, right?

I do not accept melancholy

but it comes anyway,

the mind-trapper.

The slow sludge death of neurons cannabilizing themselves

in an attempt not to feel at all,

something so much more empty than numbness.

I am told not to accept nothingness

but I make it come anyway,

the mind-ender.

I do not face it with fear but with relief.

Fear is dead.

I am the fear-killer.

Peppermint

12 Nov

Dear Krystina,

it’s that time of year again, when walking into Starbucks always leaves me feeling a little bit sucker-punched. The walls are draped in that peppermint color, red and white striping everything from the pastry wrappers to the boxes for sale of instant coffee.

It’s those twelve-packs of instant Christmas blend that get me most. Those were your favorite, the only instant coffee acceptable enough for consumption by your standards – though whole-bean roasts were always preferred. I remember those weeks where we bought bag after bag, made affordable only because you worked at Starbucks, had been before it all happened and then were transitioning back again, all those early morning shifts that would turn out to last you all day. I’d miss you when you were gone. I don’t know if I ever told you that.

Oh, and thanks for letting me use your employee number to get discounts on my own personal stash of Christmas blend instant, hidden in the dresser middle drawer between my nicer clothes, out of sight of potential surprise inspections at the house. No, we kept our dutifully decaf coffee on display in the cabinets for those.

You know you were the one who taught me how to make proper drip coffee, right?

Requiem for a Dream was your favorite movie.

You always managed to pull off that leather jacket more than you knew.

You had mad eye-liner skills.

The only thing I have left of you is a single goddamn piece of paper. I was leaving treatment that day, going back out into the world of real people and real triggers and real chance of relapse. But you told me you believed in me. Scrawled a single-line note on that piece of paper. Signed it with “<3 K.”

That’s the only thing I have left of you.

A single goddamn piece of wrinkled paper. That’s not enough for your memory.

I believed in you too.

“<3 K”

I hope the syringe didn’t hurt too much. I hope you didn’t hurt at all, in the end. God and all his damned angels know you spent too much time paying debts that weren’t yours with pain that was, while you were here.

The Starbucks are looking like peppermint, Krystina. Guess it’s time to buy a bag of Christmas blend again.

Poem: Death’s Regret

22 Jun

Death’s Regret

I tire of this death,

I am weary of destruction.

I want nothing more

than to see the end of the day out.

 

I wish for nightfall

and yearn for explosion.

I ache for the cavernous

to hold me without doubt.

 

I cannot escape seconds

having none of my own,

and time is a cruel friend

as it only ever leaves me.

 

Constancy is frozen,

unchanged to the bone,

but I am infinite,

an in-understandable cruelty.

 

I give relief to the ones that are crying.

I take away the pain of your strife.

I am locked here, while you are escaping.

I am Death. I have no such life.

On Death

7 Jan

Happy Monday! Mondays need more presents. I think it would make them nicer.

So, here’s a present for you all. It’s a short story I’v written about a very flamboyant alien and a very serious question. Hope you enjoy!

 

 

On Death

It was an odd place, this earth. Shuttles going in and out on a daily basis to keep the population at equilibrium. Missions forged weekly to find new frontiers to settle. Science slowed to a near standstill, only the one regulation-mandated study coming out per year. Art had been all but abandoned. With immortality comes time, was the motto here. There would be time for discovery later. If you lost your creativity, you had forever to find it again. The most important thing, they said, had already been found. The thing on which hinged everything.

Eternal life.

But he was here on a sight-seeing trip, a cultural expedition to become acquainted with this new culture that had reached the prime of its life (though with its infinite extent, who could really judge what phase it was in?). It was an anthropological examination for his human studies class. Those odd, four-limbed creatures were just so endearing, he couldn’t have passed up an opportunity to rub one of his many elbows with them. They were just so curious, such small creatures holding such a large key to the universe. And it was still so unwieldy to them, all these millennia later. Humans were a cute species. So funny.

“Excuse me,” he asked a man rushing by, “what have you done today?”

The man looked at him as if – well, in colloquial terms, as if he were an alien – and just kept hurrying by.

“Hmph,” he harrumphed to himself. Rude.

He kept walking through the terminal, passing up all the busy bodies hustling from place to place dragging their infernal roller luggage behind. You’d think that immortal beings would be more aware of where their supplementary appendages were going, instead of letting them fly all over the place, tripping up poor innocent “aliens” like himself who happened to have more than two appendages for locomotion. Honestly. These people’s fountain of youth certainly hadn’t made them any less crass. You’d think, having all the time in the worlds, they’d slow down at some point…

“Oomph!” he spluttered, nearly falling flatly onto his primary nose. Quickly recovering, he whipped around, expecting to see an offending roller bag hurtling off into the crowed after its master, leaving no hope of an apology.

You can imagine his surprise when he was confronted with a very gangly, very scrawny, very bearded old man sitting squarely on the floor in front of him.

“Oh!” he exclaimed. “My apologies!”

The old man looked up at him with glazed eyes. They locked gazes for a moment, but then the old man merely looked back down at the floor and shrugged.

“No bother.”

Finally! He was thrilled. Someone who would talk to him! He plopped down on the floor next to the aged human.

“Hello!” he said brightly. “May I talk to you?”

Some of the haze cleared from the old man’s eyes and he looked at his visitor curiously. “I suppose.”

“Fantastic!” He rummaged in his backpack (a much more sensible invention, really) for his list of questions. “Here we go!” He pulled out the much-crumpled piece of paper and a pen (tragically, already showing signs of leaking). “Let’s see,” he thumbed down the list, searching for the best question question to open with. “Aha! I know. Tell me, have you truly loved?”

The old man chuckled, but there was pain in the rasp. “Oh, I’ve loved, my boy. I’ve loved and loved again.”

He leaned in closer. “But,” he said in a conspiratorial whisper, “have you ever really loved?”

The old man closed his eyes. His voice fell low. “Her name was Ally.”

“I see,” he said, scribbling the name down on his paper. “Where is she now?”

The man didn’t answer for a moment. He was silent so long that his visitor looked up from his crumpled piece of paper and promptly pretended not to notice the tears streaming down the old man’s face.

“She died.”

“Oh,” he gulped. “But I thought…”

“Yes, yes,” the old man waved a hand at him impatiently. Ire creeped into his voice. “But she didn’t want it.”

He fidgeted with his paper nervously. “Okay, then,” he muttered. “Next question, next question… let’s see… oh!” He looked at the old man quizzically. “If you don’t mind me asking,” he tried, politely as possible, “why, ahem, why did you let yourself grow old? Seems everybody else around here just keeps regenerating themselves. You know, the eternal youth thing.”

“Oh, I’ve had my fair share of re-youthing,” the old man nodded slowly. “I’ve been a strapping young boy more times than I can count. Eventually, the repetition of it all just… got old. Just because I could grow young again did not mean that I could remake myself. Each time I was still left with all my limitations, all my faults. Infinite life does not make for infinite abilities, my son.”

“Oh.” He ran over his sheet of questions again and again, but none of them seemed to fit anymore. Suddenly, he and, foregoing his human studies professor’s instructions about how to properly go about questions, asked one not on his list. “Then why are you still here?”

“I do not know whether I have loved enough, laughed enough, learned enough, lived enough,” the man said frantically. “How can I ever end things before I know that I have completed myself? The decision has been left to me, deigning my life finished. But what if I have missed something? I can’t go out yet. I am plagued by the constant suspicion that there is something more, and that I have not found it yet. I have lived my life over and over again. I am bored of this existence. I am tired. And yet despite this emptiness in me, I have searched this life again and again, and have come to the conclusion that what I feel must be wrong, for there is nothing left. That this must be all there is to life, in the end, this hole. How can I die, if this is all that’s left?” The man fell silent.

He looked at the old man. Strange, this human’s thinking pattern. He was feeling very “alien” right now indeed.

He cleared his throat. “But,” he said in as small, unobtrusive a voice as he could manage, “you haven’t found life’s end.” The old man looked up at him, curiosity returning to his old eyes.

“Yes?”

“Well,” he said, trying not to sound too matter-of-fact, “if you never die, how will you know for sure whether there’s ever anything else?”

The old man was silent for a long while. Finally he looked up and met his visitor’s gaze again.

“I don’t know, my boy. I don’t know.”