I want to say – no, I want to shout: “I do something!”, whenever they ask. But writing poetry – much less publishing it via a blog – is not something one can put on the résumé. Because you need a résumé to be valued, to be something; to show that you do something. If I say it, they’ll look at me with pity and lack of impression. I’m the starving artist, the Arthur Rimbaud, the Vincent van Gogh, the hedonist, the narcissist, the thinker, the non-committer; afraid of everything and everyone. Drawn to everything and everyone. I can be everything from obsessed to bored, wild to lazy. Brutally honest to brutally lying. Hiding. Hiding from my life and the world. Never producing anything of value in the present, only to be recognized later (and maybe not even then).
Yet, I’m one myself, they say. So they should. It is my curse and my gift; my contradictory position in this world: to distance myself from everything in order to observe it all – in order to know everything; come close to every crook and cranny and experience through others. It is neither one or the other. Never. It never can be, because I’ll always be curious, always open. I cannot be closed. Yet, I’m a hypocrite in that by excluding myself from doing the things I should – though I’m only trying to be true to myself – I’m partly closing myself off from the world.
It’s a constant battle within myself.
Am I pathetic because of my excuses to exclude myself? Maybe. But I’m also just … me. I’m realizing that now. That’s why I choose as I do; because I’m beginning to understand me. Call me self-absorbed, narcissistic, but I’m tired of making excuses for myself; for doing as I do, for being who I am. That’s the adult version of myself taking a stand. I need this. Too long have I done what everybody else expected or wanted of me. I was a convenient or even disposable part of everybody else’s lives. That’s just life. This is me giving myself value, entirely me. This is me being free – if only to put myself in my own prison, but let it be my business then. Give me a chance, and let me handle it. Don’t dismiss me just yet.
Yet, there is a chasm between us. I feel it.
Why can’t they understand? That I immerse myself into a world of such imagery and introspection; that I can disappear, mentally as well as physically, from this world for hours, days, even months? It is who I am, what I need to do. Do they not so themselves? I cannot truly fathom such a life where you do not do this. I guess external matters are what they immerse themselves in and rightly so, but do they not once become introspective, thinking for more than an hour or so, at least? Do they not see thinking can be a production in itself? A life in itself? I try so hard to understand how you can live otherwise, why can’t they try to understand my side? But I guess it is ‘easier’ to live an extroverted life than an introverted one. You cannot give much for all the self-analyzing in the world if it doesn’t transfer to the external world, and I understand, but please, try to see my side. Slow down and listen to me for a second.
They do not understand when I say no to alcohol and drugs. They cannot see that I do not need those things to conjure the visions and versions of life I want to experience. When I want to escape from the life I have. In that sense, I can get myself drunk without lifting a bottle to my lips. I do not experience or feel those moments any less than I experience or feel day-to-day life. ‘Real’ life isn’t any more real than my dreams and imagination. The two worlds blend.
And all this doesn’t mean I’m oblivious to the world around me. Quite the opposite, in fact. The world is the very thing I’m curious about. I just keep myself at safe distance and try to learn everything from that viewpoint. That is my vice and my virtue.