Monday, April 25, 2016

Memories Are Bullets

On Valentine’s Day I wrote about my friend who loves to travel to shitholes. If he knew I am into femdom, he would roll his eyes in disbelief. Kinda silly, his travel destinations make him a masochist albeit with slightly different cravings. Not that he sees it that way.

Before The Throne Of Beauty


The Letter
Before he left for Afghanistan he wrote two letters. In one of them he quoted Kill the Dead by Richard Kadrey

“Memories are bullets.
Some whiz by and only spook you.
Others tear you open and leave you in pieces.”

Imagine yourself one night, sitting behind your laptop. You are about to have some serious fun in way few people understand. Adventures in distant - and hopefully dangerous places - loom. “What if” pops up inevitably. Something only a fool ignores. You think about the ones you loves. No-one writes a hundred letters. The ones you do write have to count. No second chances. In the heat of the moment – even in the safety of your own home – the truth reveals itself.

An hour later you cannot [don’t want to?] remember what you just penned down and printed. You know it’s good. Even better than that, it’s all that ever did, does or will matter. It’s the last time the two of you speak. Maybe. A man who is blessed writes a letter that has nothing new in it. Same old stuff, perhaps with a bit more emphasis. She has long known what matters, but it never hurts to highlight a few things. You look at your desk and what you see in front of you is a sealed enveloppe. Just in case. A silly thought pops up. You pity the friend who has to deliver them. Nobody can have it all.


Batman doesn’t do Iraq
So my bat-shit crazy friend – let’s call him Batman - intended to go to Iraq this April. “Because I can”, he said. Sure, why not? Life in suburbia, with or without mistress, can be boring. He confessed, he already wrote the letters, two of them, when his visa application was turned down. Kinda disappointed, but things began to make sense after ISIS attacked Brussels. The letters basically wrote themselves, he said. He exactly knew whom to write to. After his trip got cancelled, he threw them out, unopened.

A while ago I wrote about Irene Adler and how Sherlock comes to the rescue when the baddies want to kill her. I argued how that was plain wrong. Batman and I talked about what if he were taken hostage.
“It’s why I write them.” That’s one way to look at it.

It left me pondering. There is so much I still want to say. But all that matters has been said. So if it were me, my only regret would be to tell the ones I love, I love them more often. There is this beautiful poem by Khalil Gibran called Before The Throne Of Beauty, in which he explains the the true nature of beauty:

 “Beauty is that which attracts your soul, and that which loves to give and not to receive.” Khalil Gibran

“Beauty is that which attracts your soul, and that which loves to give and not to receive.”

I argued before how kink is not benign. It turns us into a slave to our desires. I love the poem because it is as far removed from the deep, dark and selfish nature of kink as can be. Nor does it relate to physical appearances anywhere. Beauty – and everything that matters – is on the inside. It takes time to see beauty. You also have to be lucky. Something you have to work for. And of course beauty has to decide whether or not it will reveal itself to you. It's way beyond Beauty and the Beast.

With hindsight I should have inscribed it in that throne I never built. A good thing perhaps. The last time I tried something like that, the house went up in flames. The Grinch is never far.

Before The Throne Of Beauty
– Khalil Gibran

One heavy day I ran away from the grim face of society and the dizzying clamor of the city and directed my weary step to the spacious alley. I pursued the beckoning course of the rivulet and the musical sounds of the birds until I reached a lonely spot where the flowing branches of the trees prevented the sun from the touching the earth.

I stood there, and it was entertaining to my soul - my thirsty soul who had seen naught but the mirage of life instead of its sweetness.

I was engrossed deeply in thought and my spirits were sailing the firmament when a hour, wearing a sprig of grapevine that covered part of her naked body, and a wreath of poppies about her golden hair, suddenly appeared to me. As she she realized my astonishment, she greeted me saying, 'Fear me not; I am the Nymph of the Jungle.'

'How can beauty like yours be committed to live in this place? Please tell me who your are, and whence you come? ' I asked. She sat gracefully on the green grass and responded, 'I am the symbol of nature! I am the ever virgin your forefathers worshipped, and to my honor they erected shrines and temples at Baalbek and Jbeil.' And I dared say, 'But those temples and shrines were laid waste and the bones of my adoring ancestors became a part of the earth; nothing was left to commemorate their goddess save a pitiful few and the forgotten pages in the book of history.'

She replied, 'Some goddesses live in the lives of their worshippers and die in their deaths, while some live an eternal and infinite life. My life is sustained by the world of beauty which you will see where ever you rest your eyes, and this beauty is nature itself; it is the beginning of the shepherds joy among the hills, and a villagers happiness in the fields, and the pleasure of the awe filled tribes between the mountains and the plains. This Beauty promotes the wise into the throne the truth.'

Then I said, 'Beauty is a terrible power! ' And she retorted, 'Human beings fear all things, even yourselves. You fear heaven, the source of spiritual peace; you fear nature, the haven of rest and tranquility; you fear the God of goodness and accuse him of anger, while he is full of love and mercy.'

After a deep silence, mingled with sweet dreams, I asked, 'Speak to me of that beauty which the people interpret and define, each one according to his own conception; I have seen her honored and worshipped in different ways and manners.'

She answered, 'Beauty is that which attracts your soul, and that which loves to give and not to receive. When you meet Beauty, you feel that the hands deep within your inner self are stretched forth to bring her into the domain of your heart. It is the magnificence combined of sorrow and joy; it is the Unseen which you see, and the Vague which you understand, and the Mute which you hear - it is the Holy of Holies that begins in yourself and ends vastly beyond your earthly imagination.'

Then the Nymph of the Jungle approached me and laid her scented hands upon my eyes. And as she withdrew, I found me alone in the valley. When I returned to the city, whose turbulence no longer vexed me, I repeated her words:

'Beauty is that which attracts your soul, and that which loves to give and not to receive.'

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