Written By F. John Surells
Renni and I live in a large apartment near the river on the north side of town. And we have one certain room I call “the study”. And I like to keep it very clean!
But yesterday I spoke with Rashon via my cell phone. I wanted to know how he thought each of us should complete the “Returning To The City” assignment we’d been given. And he said he’d already finished his piece, and that again this time, as in his “To Amber” chapters, he’d used the approach of writing basically philosophical statements of fact to his girlfriend. And when I asked what he’d included concerning the journeys we’d been on, he said he’d said very little about them, except to perhaps speculate about why they’d been mandated at this time. And I told him I hadn’t begun my chapter as of yet, but that I agreed with his approach to this assignment, and that I was going to employ the same strategy he’d employed for the completion of his required submission.
But then Rashon told me about how he’d ended his chapter. And he mentioned the “fuhrerbunker” comment. And he said he’d had reservations about finishing the chapter that way. Still, he also said he was satisfied that, as a stopping point for the piece, he’d employed the concept of humanity once again falling prey to dictatorship, yet felt that maybe that concept should have been, or at least could have been expanded upon somewhat more. But he said after he’d made the remark about the bunker, his mind had gone blank concerning that issue, and could I perhaps comment upon this in my chapter. And so, as a favor to Rashon, I shall attempt to say a few words about his chapter ending comment at this chapter’s end.
But for now I’d like to speak of two obstacles, or perhaps I could collectively term them a figurative cancer that’s been an unfortunate part of my life for a long time now. And the first of those dilemmas concerns my mental image of how what I term “library neatness” still attempts to pervade my life, but is unable to. And I can’t grasp hold of order! And yet, despite that failure, I always acknowledge that perhaps I’m better off living as I do. Maybe an ordered existence would be bad for me. And maybe I’d become tyrannical if I possessed it.
And secondly, every day I begin my activities with both a pledge and a prayer. And those promises and supplications daily address the very down to earth occurrences which of course one would always expect to take place on any given day; but then they also always allude to suppositions and assumptions which I either believe, or at least fear may be true . But why have I mentioned those beliefs and fears at this time? I’ve done so because of the negative components they contain – components in my mind – components which never allow me to stop thinking about what others are thinking about – and especially about what they’re thinking about me. Oh God, what do they think about me? I’m so afraid they have little good to say about me. But then, of course I don’t know whether that’s true or not. And sure, I know this situation is probably best diagnosed as paranoia; nevertheless, is not the very heart of that condition the continual agony derived from not knowing if others are thinking and saying negative and derogatory comments about one? And if such negativity and derogation are indeed being spread about behind one’s back, as regards those sinister comments, how many of them are actually true ?
And, frankly, I don’t know how much longer I can keep telling myself that situations will change for the better soon. I’ve always believed in the concept of starting over, but as each and every day passes, and I’m unable to step away from all the wrongs of the past, and as I’m likewise unable to secure peace of mind, and free myself from blame either suspected to have been, or actually known to have been alleged against me, my hope of ever knowing real contentment, let alone freedom from guilt, either phony or real, seems continually more remote.
But I guess I’ll carry on. I’ll have to! And every morning after I make the pledges and say the prayers I mentioned earlier in this piece, I tell myself that this is the day that all the old restrictions and temptations which have for so long been a part of my life will begin to fade away. But of course, such a day as that hasn’t dawned as of yet.
And, you know, I’m sorry, but I guess it’s quite clear by now that this isn’t a written piece which champions love and lovers. And that’s why, unlike Rashon, I’ve not addressed this “Returning To The City” chapter directly to the (hopefully still) love of my life. But I’ll say only this about the journeys Rashon and I have just now completed: While it may be true (as Rashon said in one of this book’s earlier chapters) that I’ve been granted a little more leeway with my remarks and methods of communication in this book than has my co-contributor Rashon, and while the sites he visited on his required excursions seemed to focus upon past goodness, or homes of famous people (note his chapters to Elvis Presley and Andrew Jackson), mine tended to concentrate upon locations of past acts of terrorism and inhumanity. And don’t get me wrong, I would no doubt have visited those locations on my own later in life anyway; yet, today that doesn’t change the fact that mine now are the memories of staring at those sites of needless devastation, and asking the simple question “Why?”
And at this point of my existence, mine also now are my speculations concerning why, as I just alluded to, I find myself continually wondering about and fearing the thoughts and opinions of others, while those others most often seem to project an aura of non-concern regarding that phenomenon; and what’s worse, in the case of a surprisingly large group of mortals, attempt to downplay any or all relevance assigned to past actions, and, in fact tell humanity at large that “things” really don’t change as years come and go. But let me tell you this: It must be both a very strong and very foolish person who’s able to, on any given day, step out into the sunshine of the present and tell a universe in which time continues on unabated that “Yes, on my dying day I’ll still be exactly as I am today.” And, although the supposed logic of that offered statement of logic seems illogical to me, it’s apparently so readily held as true by such huge numbers of mankind as to have accrued for them a separate genre of humanity, i.e. “the status-quo.”
But here’s a challenge that I’m submitting for your consideration at this time. Please ask yourself these questions, and then attempt to answer them honestly: First, “In a society so lacking in happiness, can I promote joy?”, second, “Are horror and ecstasy sometimes experienced simultaneously?”, and third, “Am I now, from this day onward, going to attempt to impart only goodness and order into the society in which I currently exist; and then by doing so actually impart those attributes to all the various populations of mankind found alive today within that earthly reality known as ‘Earth One’?”
Well, personally I know that I’m going to accept the challenge posed by that last paragraph’s third question. But I can’t promise that I’ll succeed in that quest. And I’d guess only God knows how many people, organizations, and happenings, whether planned or unplanned, and whether good or evil, might be able to deter me from my mission of right living.
And as an example of what I was speaking of in the last sentence, please consider the following scenario which most likely never occurred, but which could have. I’m driving on the highway. I’m returning to the city. Now I’m looking in my rear view mirror, and I’m seeing that a police officer is trying to summon me to the side of the road. He has his summoning lights flashing, but he doesn’t understand that I don’t think I can pull over. No, I don’t think I can pull over because I don’t believe the person telling this story has, with his pen, empowered me to do so. And that supposed lack of empowerment is now, in my mind implanting the seed of my possible non-reality. And oh, maybe that’s why I can’t come to grips with the phenomena of parallel realities and classifications of mankind – maybe I’m not real myself!
Yet, couldn’t any writer, faceless though he or she may be, continue to weave both known and unknown material indefinitely by use of pen as needle? Yes, I suppose so. But then, wouldn’t society eventually ask “Where is his or her heart?” And if writers themselves don’t really know what is championed within their own hearts, souls, and minds, how can they expect readers to deduce it?
We’ve heard that what can be seen and heard can be accepted as real, but what about what can’t be seen and can’t be heard? Oh, those artistic types! They bend the rules so wickedly! Nonetheless, “the order” eventually attempts to, if not subdue, then at least stymie their efforts. And of course “the order” doesn’t want to be differentiated from simple order. But, we can’t allow that to happen! We must know what is order, and what is “the order”! And, thus, we make this stipulation: Order means lives lived without carelessness and chaos; but “the order” is a rigid set of laws, rules, restrictions, and traditions which seek to tell mankind what’s undoubtedly real, and what to think about what has been classified as actual. And it’s been said that “the order” also strives to secure a universal light by which it might be able to illuminate the future.
And today, upon arriving back home, I’ve found that indeed Renni had never even left our city! It seems Ralph had asked her and Amber to stay at the home of Lauren Havess for a while. So, of course I’m glad to be home today, and I’m glad to have been greeted here by the love of my life, but I haven’t as of yet determined what my reaction toward Ralph should be concerning these developments.
And just now, I’ve come here to the study. And as I’m seated here now amidst great knowledge accrued in the past, I’m wondering if it’s not true that despite all the evil present in our daily lives, twice as much goodness should, or at least could exist there as well. And yes, I believe the answer to the question just inferred is “Yes.” But how can I acknowledge that answer and its ramifications when my focus is nearly always upon bygone years? And although I know consideration of the past is often futile, I also know that through my study of it is how I’ve learned how I’ve become who I am today.
And whenever I sit here, in this study, it seems as though library neatness is so prevalent here. And I’m thinking that’s symbolic, because here is where books about ancient promises, and books about present developments make spectacles of themselves, and cry out for rereading. And today I’m finding I can’t account or atone for all the deeds committed or not committed in what was once the sunshine of the present. And sometimes the darkness of the past overwhelms me here. And that frightens me, yet I know the past has passed and I’m here in the present. And please don’t mock my simplicity of thought concerning this! My mind needs care and slowness now. It’s very troubled!
And all around me here, symbolically speaking of course, I see people positioned. They’re apparently attempting to pursue potentials. And they’re evidently patrolling planes of existence.
And in the past didn’t parents and purveyors of the Gospel plead with us to prepare our
futures? Yes, but in many cases we must have been unperceptive. We must have suffered from
disparities of personality. And others around us then must have been unprepared to accept any
preoccupation with anything poetic or political.
And today I fear the influences of the wasted and unwanted realms of the present are real.
And I’ve been told they exist clothed in misgivings and wishes molded through fear. But I’ve
studied them, and found they’re at once my desire and loathing, nakedness and clothing, wife,
mother, father, sister, brother, and time controlled lover. But they’re also my daughter and son,
and all relations I’ve passed by. And I expect them all to canvas all nations, while visiting all
stations in which the statements of nations are stationed. And rest assured, they’ll search for you and me in all seasons. And today such reasoning occupies my mind and makes me wonder if I’ve committed any treasons against what evidently is a continual ongoing passage of time.
And in the mind is where reason should reside. But should it leave there, it may free fall through retrospective years, and instill fear in schools, factories, bars, organizations, churches, living rooms, and so on. And if it does go on so, it will no doubt ultimately sink down past pastors, priests, rabbis and other religious leaders, as well as beyond professors, alchol and/or drug users, prostitutes, criminals, prisoners, people who feel the world owes them a living, politicians, philosophers, lovers, haters, tillers of the soil, and whatever remains of royalty, and all this while it expresses its loyalty to chaos only.
And I feel as though the earthly mind and heart, and the eternal soul are the universal temporal trinity. And I believe faith keeps the three of them down to earth. But, as time passes the present depends upon that trinity to discard what it feels it must to the past, as it looks toward the future.
And, speaking candidly, must we not admit that so many facts of non-sexual life need be weighed and pondered? And can’t some of those facts actually duplicate their significance and honor? Yes, I think they can. And I think they can do that because many times they’re overlooked or deemed irrelevant. And then, when the populace at large least expects it, they often expose themselves in a hard-core form.
But sometimes, after consideration of what most times turn out to be some of the most basic elements of human nature, the mortal body, in its tiredness, seeks the repose of past knowledge. And sometimes it finds that. Yet, other times it finds instead music that keeps churning behind a wall long after party guests have left and are returning home believing that the evening should now be reckoned as ended. And you know, I’d be very remiss in my duties as tale spinner if I didn’t now caution you of what follows.
If you wish others to justify, rectify, or perhaps even sanctify disorder, then be prepared
to pay them in advance. And don’t be surprised if they won’t accept your payment directly. They may instead direct you to their payment executioners who, as you may have heard, always keep their faces well hidden. And you may not believe it, but although those payment executioners do keep their faces well hidden, they still can execute your payment directly. And if you think I’m joking, you’d better think again! And remember this, a wall has now been mentioned in this discourse, and you’re standing on the wrong side of it!
And isn’t it strange that sometimes entities which we assumed were silenced, return to us
reconfigured, and attempt to calm us by applying their versions of salvation to our souls? But oh we won’t accept it, because we know from whom our eternal reward is granted, and where it will surely someday be found.
And sometimes tempests return. And although they’re weather-related, haven’t they often attempted to tempt us, and then present us with an olive branch of damnation disguised as a rose of eternal peace.
And so often I’ve searched for the real peace seekers, but have found those just mentioned
vipers instead. And other times I’ve found only emptiness. “Your life will perpetuate itself. You have no need to fear,” I was told. But now I don’t even know which side’s apostles told me that! And this
uncertainty causes me to feel naked when I from time to time must stand in the bright lights of hatred. And I fear that the threads from which my life was woven are wearing thin.
Yet, I just can’t believe how powerful these words of recognition are! And had they the same
secondary breath of life which I have, I’m sure they’d leap back from this page and strangle me! And there’s an anxious expectation about them which, I fear, has heretofore not been granted release; but rather has been subdued by convention, and the societal mindset of the twentieth and twenty first centuries. But now they’re free! Yes, now they’re totally free! But they still torment my sanity as does a scene in my mind of the Enola Gay flying away after dropping its cargo. Also, I can now see a gap between fear and joy which I fear may be too wide to be sewn shut. But is it really? I don’t
know. And that’s why I don’t sanction the thoughts of those who have nothing more to tell me than “Try to think clearly.”
And although I may not always think in a fashion deemed clear by some, at least I know I’d never wish to live in an environment of dictatorial propaganda. No, I want to live where free thought continues on! And yes, free thought does continue on yet today, though controllers, tyrants, false prophets, and even to a much lesser degree misguided guiders of youth are constantly trying to restructure it - and often for their own advancement.
But I’m seated here in the study today. And I like to keep this room “ordered”. But now I need to once more reference a fact I stated earlier in this piece; and that is that for all the evil present in our lives, twice as much goodness does (or at least should) exist, but may not always be acknowledged. And why is that acknowledgment sometimes lacking? It must be because we often assign too much importance to the words of gossipers and naysayers. And then we suffer when we can’t learn what those types may have said about us. And I hope that nothing which could even be considered worthy of discussion by gossipers and naysayers has been given print in this book. And if it has, then God forgive us!
But as I end this piece, I want to repeat the fact that I said I wanted to follow Rashon’s lead in the completion of this particular chapter. And whether or not I’ve actually done that is debatable – perhaps. Nonetheless, I couldn’t resist the temptation to use some “word plays” herein. And I’m sure you noticed them. And sometimes I guess I just feel the need to “bring it on” a little – so to speak. Yet, I always try to keep this study room neat and tidy. And some people have actually gone so far as to say that from time to time they’ve found me to be strange, or even weird!
Nonetheless, here’s my promised response to Rashon’s “furherebunker” comment. Yes, there’s no doubt in my mind but that when a society becomes too lax as concerns minor crimes, morality, illegal immigration, the strict punishment of those who commit major crimes (especially murder), and the general overall belief that each human being must try to sustain him or herself without dependence on others (and that last “entry” refers of course not to those who are truly unable to fend for themselves, but rather to those who for some reason or reasons believe others, or mankind as a whole owes them a living), it then slips ever closer to dictatorship and a loss of personal rights and freedoms. Oh, and one last comment about this which may anger some, and/or leave them in disbelief: Despite our particular society’s seemingly great emphasis upon liberal or “left leaning” beliefs and concepts, should the dreadful and terrible occurrence just warned of in the last sentence ever really occur, rest assured that a tyrannical right wing regime could come to power here just as, or perhaps even more easily than one of the left wing.
Oh, and like Rashon, Ralph has also asked me to include something here on his behalf. He wants me to tell you that as he stated in one of his earlier chapters, the next internet installments for this book shall be chapters twenty seven and twenty eight. Chapters twenty two through twenty six shall not appear here, as three of them (twenty two through twenty four) were written by Lauren Havess and published on the internet previously, which is also the case for chapter twenty five written by myself. But, for some reason, Ralph has decided that chapter twenty six, written by Rashon, shall not appear as an internet post, but shall be included in the published book only.