Aug 7, 2008

Dr. Swoozie Nights, Chapter Ten, by Leonardo Ricardo

After Jose was murdered in 1997 I was in grief...I didn't realize how sad and empty I had become...I returned to Puerto Rico to try and stabalize my everyday emotions and life...my dear friend Suzanne Woods suggested I start writing a book...a "thin book" a "little novel"...NOW, from time to time here at Eruptions at the Foot of the Volcano, my blogspot, I'm going to read/write you one of my thin chapters from that thin book...I hadn't read any of it for many years and I was startled by what I just discovered...we will begin with Chapter X:


"Hey Doctor Goldberg, How's it going today?"

"Yes, I'm well, and you're looking healthy and chipper
Dr. G. I think you must be feeling as good as you
look! Have you lost some weight?"

"I thought so. You're looking handsome and fit as hell


"Yes, I'm doing fine but I'm getting a little restless
and I find myself daydreaming and thinking about my
past quite a lot."

"Oh, It is normal? I was wondering about it. I didn't
realize these sessions would stimulate my thinking
about the past to the extent that they do. I also
think silly thoughts about trying to make sense about
life and the big world and I try to make sense about
all of the 'thems' too. Right! Like I could ever
make sense about life or know what the heck the
'thems' think. The 'thems' don't even agree on what
they think! The 'thems' could use extensive theraphy
with you Doc."

"Dr. Goldberg, I'm starting to get worried. I mean, I
don't want to start dwelling or getting obsessed about
my past." I want to be able to live in the now and
accept life exactly as it is! I'm starting to wonder
if I'm ever going to be truly active, happy and feel
love again."

"No, I'm not depressed. I don't think I'm feeling
depressed at all. I'm just starting to do all this
introspective type thinking and seems to be happening
more and more. Well, I guess I've always had a very
active and colorful mind. If anything, I'm feeling a
little lonely and sad."

"O.K. Doctor Goldberg, I won't be concerned. I know
we're making great progress with our sessions. I'll
keep my eye on the ball."

"Sure, thanks, I'm comfortable. Yes, I'm feeling
relaxed. I'm ready to start...."

....going back and back and back....closing your eyes
now and slipping back...slipping back further than you
have ever gone back before. Going back past the time
when you were a child and then past the time when you
were a baby and going back and back in the time when
you lived before...going back and slipping into the
space and time when you existed before....slipping
back now, slipping back past your birth and your
conception....back and back and back...dropping off
and going far, further back and into the darkness of
before. Dropping back to the time when you were
living before....

"It's dark and I'm going back and back into the
darkness and into the silent place where I'm alone and
but I'm not afraid. I'm going back to before there
was a me...I'm falling and flying backward to the
place that was me...the place where I was me
before...one of the me's before this me. Back and
back...slipping and drifting far down past this me.
Dropping down into the valley of before that is
further back than ever before...I'm slowing now, I'm
starting to slow to a stop now...I'm stopping now...I
fell far back and I'm feeling hundreds of years back
in my primitive world of before and finding my way
back to the original me. Falling back to discover the
origin of me."

"I've stopped now. I've stopped and I'm letting the
shapes and images form around me. I'm not forcing the
shapes to appear...gently, I'm letting the shapes
appear from out of the dark and from out of the
graygreen of this place that I see is my before."

"..yes, I can hear you whispering Doctor and I'll keep
telling you what I see....I'm starting to see the
outdoors around me...I'm outdoors and it's cold..."

"I'm out in the craggy wilderness and I live alone in
a little shack that is made out of stones and
branches. It's small, but there is only me. I live
here alone now. It's cold and windy out here in this
place with only a few trees and mostly dry and frozen
brush. It's always cold here but sometimes in snows
too and that makes it worse. It's always cold in the
highlands and sometimes it freezes and I take my dog
and my cow and we stay inside my house. I don't care
about anything very much. I have my dogs and I have
the cow and I have a few sheep that I keep at night in
a covered and walled pen. I don't have any family or
friends because they all died from the cold and I
buried them under piles of rocks to keep them warm. I
stay near my little house. I'm not very old. I don't
know how old I am but I have my teeth and my body is
strong and my hair is brown. It doesn't matter if I'm
old or not and it doesn't matter what I look like. It
only matters that I'm the original me. Nothing matters
to me because there is nothing that changes anything
for me. I just exist in this place that is graygreen
colored and windy and cold.

It does matter that I keep my fire burning and I stay
alive to take care of my cow and my sheep. My dogs
keep good care of themselves and sometimes my dogs
take good care of me by sleeping on top of me and
keeping me warm. Dogs are smart and they want to play
but I don't feel like it anymore.

At night, when I go outside for wood, I stare up into
the sky and wonder who keeps all those tiny fires
burning up there? When the little fires go out in the
nightsky the whole sky turns blue and the cold moon
becomes warm and then I have day. I wonder how far up
it is to those tiny fires in the sky? There must be
other people and dogs up there in the nightsky place.
There must be other people like me who take care of
cows and sheep and build the nightfires. I wonder who
lives up their in the nightsky and I wonder if they
don't care about anything either. I wonder if they
are alone? I wonder if they look down on me lighting
my nightfires and then they wonder about me. I'm so
small in this place and the sky is so big and I bet
there are many people like me up there that would like
me to come up and so we could be friends. I can tell
their fires are set far apart and they probably live
alone just like me. They are like me and they don't
know where anyone else is either. They just see the
fires and dream about having a friend like me.

My life is lonely and small in this empty place and I
don't care about anything at all. I don't know anybody
and nobody knows me. Nobody knows that I'm here in
this place except the people in the sky that see my
nightfires and wonder who I am.

I hear noises coming near my house. My dogs are
barking. I see there are three men coming down the
hill toward my house. They are angry bad men I can
tell. They are killing my dogs. I stare and them and
feel nothing. They are coming to me with big knives
and I know they are going to kill me. I don't care.
They killed my dogs and I don't care about anything at
all.

They stabbed me and killed me and rolled my body down
the hill. I don't mind because I'm glad I'm dead. I
feel better now that I'm dead and my dogs are glad to
be with me and they are dead too. My dogs are jumping
all over me and are glad to be with me. My dogs are
so happy and are licking my face. We are all feeling
warm again.

My dogs and I are going to go exploring up into the
nightsky. Right now we're leaving this place where we
didn't ever want to be. The bad men can keep the cow
and sheep, and my dogs and I don't care anything about
them.

Being dead has made us free. This is the way I always
wanted to be. I didn't know it before.

I'm going to go find friends up in the sky.

I didn't know I wanted friends, until I was dead."


end/chapter ten

Thanks also to you fs, for reminding me I'd written some chapters of this little "thin" book.

4 comments:

Scott Hankins said...

Thank you, thank you. (!)

FranIAm said...

Oh my... oh my. I can't read this and not have it imprinted upon my heart.


Thank you is right.

fs said...

Wow, Leonardo. Your mind/spirit and imagination are deep and magical places within you. You are so amazingly rich inside, Leonardo. And you know what to do with the pain of life, of grief. It doesn't win: *you* win.

I'm wondering if you've seen the movie "Kiss of the Spider Woman?" It's about the power of imagination as a place we can go when life sucks too much, and it's about the power of kindness, of love, too. I think you'd like it.

Dear Leonardo.

Leonardo Ricardo said...

Dear fs,

Thanks especially for the "you win" part...I see that way (mostly)...yes, I first read "Kiss of the Spider Woman" then later saw the movie...then later saw the movie again...exciting depth (I bet I'd get even more if I saw it again and again)...I always like Raul Julia, he was Puerto Rican...at the new Contemporary Galery in Puerto Rico (in a great, made-over high school in Santurce) there is a Raul Julia Theatre...warms my heart.