Jim Trainer

Posts Tagged ‘zen’

The Shit

In anger, Being A Poet, Being A Writer, Being An Artist, blogging, blues, depression, getting sober, mental health, recovery, sober, sobriety, solitude, straight edge, truth, Writing, writing about writing, WRITING PROCESS on February 23, 2017 at 1:24 pm

If you want something different to happen, do something different.

-My Zen Master of an ex-girlfriend
They’re out there grinding it out, beeping and drilling and building their towers of greed into the sky.  I had to get up just before starting this to shut the window and put on Rebels, Rogues&Sworn Brothers, at top volume, just to drown the sounds of new Austin out.  I’m on my second large mug of Extra Dark and this post is shaping up to be the kind I loathe.  Who the fuck am I and why should you care about what I’m listening to and what kind of coffee I’m drinking?  I got caught up in a rom com on TV the other night, because I’m a romantic jerkoff, and I realized that nothing will ever be the same.  Know what I mean, Brothers and Sisters?  Never again will an all-white cast living in New York City be acceptable, even for harmless distractions.  It used to just be evil and vapid-you know, pop culture-but now it feels criminal.  The middle class is part of our mythology now.  It only exists up on the screen and in the cellulite.  It ain’t me, Brother, and it certainly ain’t them-the working poor-who I’m one disaster and dental appointment away from at all times and we’re not white or black or Hispanic or Middle Eastern or Sioux but in fact all of them and more.  From now on, there is only us and them.  It’s always been that way but some of you are just waking up now, you didn’t listen to punk rock before it became a fad, or grew up somewhere so incredibly isolated it could’ve been life threatening for you to make a stand.  Make no mistake, we are in The Shit now, and this will be our fight for the rest of our lives.  Or, we could just slide nice and sleazy into the new world order, draw the blinds and turn up the TV.  Apathy has never looked so good and this is where things get sticky for me.
Apathy is a reaction.  It’s a feeling (or lack of), and there are prescribed actions that come in response to it.  Once you’re apathetic, you gotta feed the monkey.  The world only spins darker, you’ll need better drugs, cheaper booze, an extensive supply of British cigarettes.  The problem, good reader, the rub-I ain’t got no monkey.  If I were to be as apathetic as I dream about for these harrowing last gasps of The America, I’d need something to keep it all at bay.  Well, I ain’t got it. Nothing.  I’m straight edge and asexual (most of the time).  There ain’t a lot I go in for.  My point is, as much as I’d love to hide somewhere-I ain’t got nothing to take away the pain, nothing to quell the anger.  I’d be stowed away with it and it would destroy me.  Just like opiates or alcohol or a codependent relationship would, my anger would consume me, chew me, trash me-you bet.  This brings us to point.  I’m sick of here.  It’s fucked here.  I’m hating everyone and everything.  I’m nonplussed and unimpressed.  In the interest of wanting to change my life I offer this overly personal, petty and cringe-worthy post.  Why should you care?  I don’t know.  Why should any of us?

You played yourself to death in me.

Failure

Ab irato,
Jim Trainer
Going For The Throat
Yellow Lark Press

Come celebrate the release of All in the wind this Sunday at Malvern Books, with readings by local favorites G.F. Harper and Jenna Martin Opperman, also releasing beautiful collections of their own.  As per usual, I’ll be telling a story-about Philly, sobriety and you, My People.  Light refreshments provided.  

Yellow Lark Press

A Constipation of Wisdom

In Activism, alcoholism, American History, anger, anxiety, mental health, mid life, middle age, politics, PROTEST, recovery, revolution, self-help, sober, sobriety on November 10, 2016 at 7:59 pm

…living systems need shocks to stir up stagnant equilibria and stimulate development.
Jonathan Zap

The idea is not to confront bad ideas but to come up with good ideas.  Otherwise, your enemies define the game and you are the loyal opposition.
-Terence McKenna

Turns out it was just a giant, toddler arm-sized turd. A Moby Dick of a thing that I felt like I was having a stroke while pushing out. I tried last night but I thought maybe I was just tired. And this morning I thought I was just blue. Then I went out, into the America, and caught every red light in Austin’s antiquated downtown district. Got to the CVS, parked. Waited in line and wondered, is this it for me, just when things were starting to get good?  Would I only succumb to failing health-shortness of breath, enlarged prostate, constipation and failing eyesight? I’m 41 and the thought of it horrifies me.

In allot of ways I’m just getting started. Certainly past and over allot of stupid shit that was weighing me down.  When you’re done putting out fires you can get some real work done.  If you take away the cycles of vulnerability and isolation I’d been riding for the last twenty-six years, I’ll be wide open.

I know I’ll have to face the America because it’s everywhere.  I’m starting to grasp what my heart always knew.  The path to sobriety is only the beginning.  Next are the emotional intoxicants.  Anger (my favorite) and apathy, anger’s comedown. There is a world that needs me, and, truth be told, that I need.  I need to make it mine, really bleed and put my heart into it.  Not caring just isn’t cool anymore.

Back on the can and feeling even closer to death, I thought about the dramatic and self-serving people in my life. I saw that I should start thinking about serving the world but that I would need to start with me.  The pendulum swung right back but I wasn’t just being a prick.   Whatever pearls of mine the swine were holding onto would have to be the price.  I wasn’t wrong to try with them, but I’d be wrong to keep trying.  I would have to clean house.  I was needed elsewhere.  Then I flushed it down.

Today, after the 2016 elections in the U.S., we are living out the example of what happens when what goes unacknowledged surfaces and it feels like a new reality but you know in your heart it is not. To suffer based on expectations is to live haunted and hunted. But we are fortunate. There could be no other answer to our meditation and prayers in dissolving hatred than to be placed front and center with it and be exposed. When a shift in a system has occurred, especially one that causes fear and discomfort, it allows for something strikingly different to appear, furthering our evolution as people. We can only know where we are going when we get there. Many of us have been practicing Buddha’s teachings or walking a spiritual journey forever and preparing for every moment of our existence. We are ready and have been waiting for this time. Our rage, pain, and anger are to be exposed if only for us to transform and mature with it. In Buddhist practice we say congratulations because now is the time we have been practicing for. No more just practicing the dance. We must now dance. And this is not a dress rehearsal.
-Zenju Earthlyn Manuel