All of us have that room in our heads where serenity lives. The little private and compartmentalized quiet space at the very center of the cavern that we build for ourselves every day. The door is often times locked, and for me, sometimes I’ve got the key, other times I don’t. When we haven’t got peace of mind, we run round trying to fill our days with constant noise and action in the hopeless attempt of distracting ourselves from the unavoidable reality that we are not at peace. Stillness is not happiness.
Silence is not an emptiness or cessation of thought, aggression, struggle or war. If
anything, peace is surrender. In no way is calm a victory –
unless capitulation can be
seen as a victory. In my own life, the times when I have felt most at peace is when I’ve unfurle
d my white flag and waved it in the direction of the universe, above the parapet of my dug-out hollow. Ceded, no shots fired!
The best way I’ve found, so far, to throw away the keys to my uptight bouncer brain, has been through travel. To get away is to fall on the mercy of the universe and ask that she doesn’t take a dump on you. I tested this theory a few years ago, by trekking across the USA from New York to San Francisco trying to outrun my old job and the army of corporate suites hounding me across the Atlantic. It’s only when I’m totally out of control in a strange country and relying on the good nature of strangers, that I feel free, and in feeling free, I feel like my real self. Who is the real me? Who is the real you? Do you really know? Have you ever had the guts to find out what hand you’ve been dealt?
Rimbaud said he had written thirty books under a “pseudonym” before he finally wrote something that he felt was true and real enough to call his own, something that really spoke with his own voice and wasn’t just him aping someone else’s style or trying to impress and be something he wasn’t. I don’t know if what I’ve written down here is of interest to anyone other than myself and closest or closeted friends. But, I can say for sure that it’s the first thing I’ve written that I can put my real name, Jane Dow, to date.