Fear and rage are emotions of the young. Understanding, which arrives slowly with age, begins to alleviate fear. Wisdom, a nutrient grown from the soil of experience, eventually cures rage. These are not hard and fast certainties, of course, but they tend to be proven more often than not. Sharing these truths with the young generally meets with youthful skepticism (or mocking laughter and vocal expressions of disbelief). Unfortunately, these facts cannot be taught; only learned through time and experience and modeled behavior. Sometimes the fear and rage of youth take up permanent residence—through perpetual arrogance and stupidity—in certain young minds immune to intelligent thought. In those cases, young minds decay into crumbling monuments to lifelong ignorance—passed down generation to generation. Some may suggest only through selective familocide can that hereditary plague be eradicated. That, of course, is not true. Except for those with traits caused by ingrained, intractable genetic damage, young people constantly exposed to proper behavioral modeling can overcome familial flaws. Desirable role models, tough but limited discipline, and positive reinforcement can overcome the unfortunate tendencies of youth. Nothing is guaranteed, though; saints with human blood dripping from their sharp incisors…and monsters beaming with gentle smiles and soft hearts always tend to surprise us.


Dreams—even vivid dreams that take place during during the transition from sleep—blur into indistinct mist if not instantly documented immediately upon waking. Efforts to record them notwithstanding, powerful dreams may weaken into vague, but disturbing, fantasies. Impossible to recall, but equally impossible to fully erase from memory. Fragments of seemingly unrelated dreams that took place over a period of days or weeks or months can occupy the mind simultaneously, tricking the brain into assuming a connection. Futilely attempting to understand the sometimes frightening nonexistent connection only exacerbates the confusion. Trying to explain disturbing dream fragments to others only elicits disinterested vacant stares, even from those who might be shocked to learn the parts they played in those scenes. But people who played those roles can never be told, lest the relationship with the dreamer be irrevocably altered. Perhaps that is the reason some vivid dreams tend to vaporize into inexplicable and nearly obscure holograms—one cannot share what one cannot describe. If dreams have no intrinsic meaning, though, what is the point of making those fantasies almost impossible to clearly remember? Indeed.


Two weeks hence, more or less, a new PET scan should reveal whether my lung cancer is in retreat or simply hiding from plain view.  I will take nothing for granted. You never know what is going on inside your body, waiting to delight you or disrupt all your plans.


We have guests coming today; my eldest brother and his wife. This will be their first trip to visit me since I moved to Arkansas ten years ago. I look forward to showing them what appeals to me about this place; and explaining how I can tolerate certain aspects of the state that are simply intolerable.


About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

I wish you would tell me what you think about this post...

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.