Trickster


M_tricksterSometimes I miss the days when I was young and strong. I had control over my emotions. I was icy and cold. I could withstand an emotional battering. Physically, I was intimidating. I could deal out a great deal of punishment and knew how to stop a lot of it from coming my way. In a lot of ways, I felt very superhuman, invincible, indestructible and eternal. I would go on forever.

Along with a body capable of many astounding physical feats, my brain was slog. I didn’t use it as much then. And that’s the part I don’t miss so much about youth. The parts where I made so many mistakes, and trusted the wrong people, and depended too much on the winds of chance. Poor decisions, poor alliances, poor options and finally just poor. I don’t miss those aspects at all. I don’t miss the parts where I didn’t get it and maybe still don’t.

I’m fuller now. My body stays on the ground much easier than it did before. Earth and I pull at each other much harder than we used to. We don’t like each other as much, gravity and I, but I know in the end he’ll have his way with me. He already has in many areas.

I see people now, so young and full of life, with so much in front of them. And I know they don’t get it, because to them, they’re eternal and indestructible and immortal. They’re foolish to think they’re going to be this way forever, but they remain blissfully ignorant of the years besetting them, of the insidiousness of time and its cloying deception of forever. It’s a mirage, but you won’t know that until you realize you’ve been pursuing it through the deserts of life without closing the gap. Instead, the spine is bent and the arches of the feet flattened, the head hung lower and the skin looser than before, the muscles less taut and sinuous. We discover the trick of time much too late in life, and experience, the harshest teacher of all, gives the test first and the lesson is taught after.

Copyright 2011, Darcknyt. All rights reserved.

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4 thoughts on “Trickster

  1. I disagree. I don’t think time or aging is a trickster. We humans, as a species, has the knowledge and self-awareness to know that we will age, wither and die. It just that youth is idiocy. The idiocy to ignore all evidence and proof that we will one day age, wither and die.

    You’re right, of course, but The Trickster here is not the time or aging, it’s our own minds and our staunch obliviousness to those things until they beset us and best us.

  2. So if we are not immortal…and time spent is already gone…. what shall we do today?

    Write something? Play with the kids. Smile. Love my family. Let’s see… did I miss anything? 🙂

  3. I am so THERE with you, man. I always thought I would age gracefully, by which I meant accepting it as inevitable without getting upset. In fact, I try to pretend not to care, but am quite obsessed with every little white hair and every little sign of slackening skin. I am told (possibly by people who are being too kind) that I could still pass for a college student to someone who wasn’t examining me closely, but goodness knows that I notice every little thing.

    It’s worse still when you get fat as you age, Spark, but I understand. I’m not obsessed with aging, I’m only disappointed that I didn’t see it happening and don’t feel I have the wisdom of the years I’ve lived, the experience of nearly half a century, to make up for the time getting away.

  4. Again with the time…

    Running out of it will remind you how precious it is. 🙂

    I actually have come to love my white hairs on the right hand side of my head… Matt always looks for them after I dye my hair, the new brand I use finally covers them up, and he doesn’t like it. Matt’s turning 30 in a few months, so the age topic has some up a lot, and I can’t seem to get it off my mind between looking at his 30th, I’m 25, my Honey Bun is already nearly 6 months, and a year ago yesterday I was 12 weeks pregnant. I think about our families, and I go home to visit, and the trees that were as tall as my Dad when I was little, that I thought were enormous, are now taller than the house, and I am in awe and saddened by how much has changed, and you don’t even notice until years later.

    That’s why it’s such a Trickster, Time. It slithers by so unnoticed and yet every moment is finite and irreplaceable.

    I can now tell stories and say “but that was 20 years ago”, and it’s profound to me. Laugh, but to me, it’s a lot right now. I wonder about the years gone by, and the ones to come. My Dad teaches drivers ed, and keeps pointing out when he’ll be able to take our son driving… and he’ll be 68, and Mama will be 72… I’ll be 41. It’s becoming a very scary feeling. It really gets me worked up sometimes when I start thinking about it.

    It’s a lot to anyone. 20 years is a long time. I know, I’ve lived through more than two score at this point.

    I look forward to someday being a soccer/hockey mama, or a band parent, or whatever, but at the same time, it turns my stomach, too. It makes me think about the relationships in my life, those that mean the world, and those I hold on to for some unknown reason, even though they can’t be happy for me, but I guess time spent makes it hard to let go.

    The last month has really made me realize I need to start taking some of my own advice from my 20 year old self.

    Your writing really turns a switch…

    I’m glad to know it’s meaningful to you. You always leave such wonderful, thoughtful comments.

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