Film Review: Catch-22

Denial. Deep down most men are embarrassed at themselves and their condition, they know that they are unhappy, ashamed of the bad decisions that they have made that instead of admitting and changing, they continue, prolong, persevere until finally their efforts to convince others that they are happy makes them believe that they must be doing the right thing. He finally succumbs to madness.

Those of us who cling onto life, who value the goodness of justice and of righteousness, we see this madness everywhere, in everyone, the lies and falseness, the pretending, and despite the attempt to escape from the jaws of its hopelessness, the existential abyss is always ready to consume our every effort to channel moral goodness and what is right.

“Me: happy happy happy. Dead. You: worry worry worry. Dead. Don’t drag me into your shit.”

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What If

I was not prepared. ‘God, I am so sorry!’ he wrote, helvetica letters etched across the screen of my phone. Shit. Why did I message him again?

She looked at me with that painfully annoying look like she was preparing to analyse a puzzling thought. Shadows from the tree outside danced over her face, the morning light brightening the white walls and reflected off the plastic plant that glistened near the window of her Scandinavian office. Psychological healing by design.

“Maybe write a letter and burn it as a symbol that you are prepared to move on?” All I could think of was her quizzical face. I disassociated.

“Move on from what?” I said while in a daydream trying to reach back to consciousness. It’s funny how you can still hear and think and speak outside of time and space.

“You never really had the chance to say what you wanted. You need to say it.” Read More

Tired

It feels like my heart is tied to a braided jute rope,
Like a broken cleat left dangling off the boat,
And the propellers speeding out of control through the liquid enclave,
As my heart slaps to and fro over the transverse waves.

My crystalline mind lying gently on the surface of the ocean,
Whistling eerie echoes of ice, gentle tunes, harmonic motion,
The cosmetic shimmer glistening over it from the sunset gleam,
Now assaulted by the pollution of this maritime machinery. Read More

On Cowardice: The Crowd is an Untruth

It is no secret that I find cowardice repulsive and it can manifest in many ways; bystanders who watch others being abused and do nothing, liars who deceitfully apologise or simply excuse their bad behaviour by pretending there is some justification for it. They see existence as merely convincing people of what they are rather than confronting what they really are, a power-struggle where some cry to maintain power and control, others becoming fiercely angry all in an attempt to persuade others to believe what they want them to believe.

I find myself thinking that such people cannot be saved, that they have become so alienated from their own moral integrity that their social deception has evolved into self-deception; they now believe their faux image is reality. I have been tactful enough to make such people choose to keep their distance from me because, frankly, telling them directly only leads to trouble, but am I being too harsh when I say that they have no chance and are digging their own grave?

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The Facsimile

“Wake up!” she cried, slapping his cheek.
A lifeless head, still, limp.
“I am here.” Startled, she slipped.
Taken aback.

A facsimile? She turned to this galley slave,
His half body standing out from the grave,
Shovel over his shoulder, insolent gaze.
Smooth as tarmac.

She looked back at the lifeless soul,
His red lips, green eyes, etched into cuneiform
Across his sinless face. Cold, but warm.
Hair jet black.

“That part of me is now dead,” snorted the renege,
He shovelled deeper and deeper as he digged,
Raining black moulded loam, his arms a drilling rig.
Dirt track.

“A grave for who?” He disappeared,
His pride, his vanity, the hubris all engineered
His futile end when his soul was auctioneered.
Memorial plaque.

Book Review: Metamorphosis

One morning, when Gregor Samsa woke from troubled dreams, he found himself transformed in his bed into a horrible vermin. He lay on his armour-like back, and if he lifted his head a little he could see his brown belly, slightly domed and divided by arches into stiff sections. The bedding was hardly able to cover it and seemed ready to slide off any moment. His many legs, pitifully thin compared with the size of the rest of him, waved about helplessly as he looked.”

Franz Kafka is an incredible writer and one of my favourite novellas, Metamorphosis, stands out as a masterpiece in twentieth century literature. The emotional response that I felt when I completed it was similar to the anime film Grave of the Fireflies where for several days I felt a heavy melancholy, a deep ache within me at the highly imaginative manner in which Kafka was able to portray his existential pain, his isolation and the longing that he felt to connect with his loved ones. The bug both conveys the grotesque image of the impotence he felt together with how his family came to see him as vermin for failing to live up to their expectations. Read More