The Laursonian Institute

The Laursonian Institute

An exercise in thoroughness

The Laursonian Institute RSS Feed

Posts tagged self

let me drown

Sound saturates my present. Fog on my windshield, damp, obscuring distinctions in my realities.

The bent howl of a note blurs my vision, eye turns inward, soul splits open like parched earth.

Frustrated and impotent. Your tide ebbs, my faded crust crumbles, is ground into common dirt. Stuff of the earth.


I remember reaching, the familiar pinch of swollen dreams straining against imagined walls.

I could feel it then, in my fingers, my throat tightening as the intangible realness of sound filled me. Leaden arms, dull with potential, tingling with unrealized action.

Real life isn’t this way. I grasp and find only the sticky sickness of fermented delusion. The putrid remains of untended wants. The maddening dullness of paper.

Paper. Of all things to build ones life on — bleached, obsolescing paper. Thousands of years of ideas, used and reused, marrow sucked out and body discarded.


All I ever wanted was to be part of something beautiful.

Capital City

Excuse me, have we met before?
I thought I heard you say
Those words
So near
I can almost recall what it was
Who it was we had in common

I’ve been here so long I’ve forgot
The place I had called home
The faces
And friends
I thought maybe you were one of them
Our parallel souls crossing paths

But I find myself here again
Always haunting doorways
I might open one and find myself
Just as I remembered I was

The same immutable contents
That soul-deafening reach
Both proud
And distant
Unlived life spilling ever over
Into my own sterile cup


I showed Lewis a sample of my handwriting from high school, and it’s almost unbearably minuscule.  Crafted with such precision and detail as to be unreadable.  At the time, that’s exactly what I was hoping.  I could put thoughts so tiny down on paper; so tiny that few would see and fewer would care.  It’s almost as good as writing in code, but better at capturing the meta-level of feeling like a minuscule, illegible individual.

It has been remarked on occasion that I’m more aware of my motives and thoughts than others.  I often wonder how much of this is made up, and how much of this is just the product of too long staring into my own self.  I can’t imagine myself any other way, and a failure of this kind of imagination not only serves to create an infinity of shyness, but the surety of action.  I am the way I am because there’s no other possible way for me to be.  I’ve always felt very sensitive to insincerity and falsehoods – not that I haven’t used my share of both –  but it has keep me on the straight and obvious path in most situations.  When one thing is clearly contrary to my nature, there’s no reason to pursue it.  This strong feeling of right and wrong which seems so entirely undeniable in my make-up also makes me feel like a good case for morality in atheism.  It’s not because some religious authority told me to act the way I do, but because my parents raised me with a strong moral pole.

On the other hand, knowing oneself too well can be very much a maddening endeavor.  When I feel unsettled about something, it’s almost consuming.  The irreconcilability of two potential actions, the lack of an obvious right, the need for action without precedent… all of these cause me undue anxiety.  In situations which require tact, politics, strategy, or serious compromise, I might as well be lost at sea.   There aren’t many situations where what I want and what should be possible or allowable don’t match up.   I generally work hard for what I want, and achieve that, and am satisfied with my results.    Or I don’t try, and I don’t desire whatever result would have come from that effort.

Now, I’m stuck in the middle of something ridiculous, but my brain keeps running over and through the situation.  I’m feeling a little drunk on success of such a minor variety, but I want to repeat it again and again.   After all these miles I’ve come, I’m still the illegible tiny-writing girl dreaming of acceptance and popularity in some circle of those I respect and want to know.  I pick someone I think is a person to aspire to, and I want to know them.  I want them to know me, accept me, encourage and inspire me.  I need intellectual stimulation based in respect and safety and mutual enjoyment.

This weekend, Lewis and I and another couple had a few beers together, and I felt like I was living that moment.  It was a pair I really respect and enjoy, and I want them to like me.  We had a really good night, and I think it was enjoyed by everyone involved.  I want more, but the issue is impossible to push.  The very knowledge that you desire someone else’s company this much is a damnable offense.  It demonstrates irrefutably the political and power imbalance in the dynamic, and I come out on the bottom side.  If having a good time with someone I look up to means this much to me, there’s no way I have anything to offer in return of equal value.  Nothing I can do will mean a quarter as much as this couple having a laugh with me, and it’s so incredibly maddening to know that.

I also know this isn’t likely the way anyone else involved sees it.  I can’t double-think, though the talent would be incredibly useful, and as such, I’ve already ruined it for myself.  I’ve let something get to me, and it’s tarnished me a little.  These moments of mine which are from the heart and soul, and not the mind, are impossible to enjoy without rusting the polished exterior.  If it’s something I’ve worked for, there’s sombre joy at the knowledge of success.  Success at the endeavor of being me and being liked for it is… like watching a movie so engrossing and beautiful that when the credits roll, you can’t help but feel a little more empty.  I see past myself, and the vision of myself as a confident and likable person just leaves everyday-me with an assurance of the impossibility of it all.

Yet I tell myself this – there have been, time and again in my life, people who rouse my spirits to this degree.  And there shall be again.  I’ve reached that point of being settled enough in Davis that I’m longing for friends and laughs outside my own humble walls.  And friends will come – it took me years in all my new homes to find my Bryannes, my Steens, Cerises, Darins, Armands… and I’m already at an advantage here.  I have a happy home life, a lovely husband, a large social network, and twice the confidence of prior years.  I just need to give myself the time and space and opportunity to find those people Lewis and I can spend countless days sparring and joking and theorizing with on the smallest of life’s details.  There are so many invigorating people on this earth, how long can it before we fall into the orbit of another?

What’s with linguists and these metaphors?

My life as a dialogue. I just got to the final and most persuasive subpoint, and I’ve forgotten what issue we’re debating. I carry on anyway, hoping that at the end of this section it all comes back to me. Or that no one noticed I obviously lost my way.