On Now

20 01 2006

Winter Writes, Not I

I don’t know what this is,
A return to my roots?
I’m not exactly
This is just a collection,
Of thoughts,
Unwound thoughts,
I imagine,
Maybe perhaps, possibly.

I’m not happy at the distance,
Between you and I,
Somehow we’ve fallen apart,
And it’s not just you,
It’s him, and them, and her too,
I’ve gone somewhere,
I’m writing in circles,
And I definitely care,
It’s just,
I’m not making waves in soccer games,
In ways good or bad,
I’m not in it with teammates,
The nice ones, the weird ones,
And the ones that play,
This isn’t just written to you,
And I’m sure you think it is,
But the world revolves around them too,
There isn’t any continuity,
Nothing to depend on me for now,
I guess that’s become apparent,
Sorry, should I get out?
Guess what, I’m not the one who leaves,
I’ll be the awkward guy in the sea,
I really am not interested in rhyme,
Or meter, or even substance,
You can excuse it as you may,
But I know this trouble will make me pay,
I have a confusion,
A lack of clarity,
And precision,
Can’t appease anyone,
Not a single person,
Not me.
And so I’ve failed! Yes I know,
Now what! What do I do?
Close the shutters, nope I can’t!
So I guess I’m returning,
Recycling back into my little world all again?
I guess?


20 01 2006


Towering waves and hidden caves,
Shimmering glassy tides,
I saw the sea in all its glory
Inside a small good-natured shell,
Somehow from my hand it faded off,
I gazed as it all just washed away ..

Maybe I could have saved it,
Drawn the dream back into the flock,
But the shell escaped and, well,
Erasing it didn’t take too long ..

A little shell could have been
Something so much more,
Maybe I’ve misplaced its meaning,
Or maybe I should search another shore ..

Passing Storm

19 01 2006

One to Derail

Get perfect already or
Just step out of the way,
I’m on a mission,
Please don’t criticize,
Whatever you say about my faults,
Odds are you’re just two steps behind,
So get perfect and try to understand,
I’m in this thing to try,
Wait on what it is you want to say,
I know exactly when I fall shy,
I’ll let you derail this train of thought,
When you get perfect (or just give it a try)
And with your perfect heart,
You can end my personal war

Stuck In Riddles

Tilt your head and question yourself,
I’m sick of doing the same,
Go get stuck in riddles,
Go to pieces down to your name,

Slip to where I’m stuck,
Get lost in your insecurities,
Find out your imperfections,
It’s doubt at life or death speed,

Crush your hopes,
The ones you dare to deserve,
Untie that rope,
There’s no escape but to learn

Step Into The Night

The modern age works like a page,
Torn from a sacred text,
Analyzed, waiting to be described,
The truth itself perplexed


The snow is melting,
The sun will shine,
The words are blooming,
Though the sun will hide.


Sheepherders cry when the night falls into place,
And the valleys creak as the monsters escape,
The problem isn’t that they can’t be contained,
We just can’t survive all the way till daybreak

Out of Sight

Fall, fall into the night,
Dream the same dream every time,
Climb way up into the sky,
Crash from those heavenly heights,
Slide to the end of this innocent flight,
Into this and out of sight

Melt the Snow

19 01 2006

Old and Tested

If I could hold you in these old and tested arms,
I would melt the snow, burning colors to keep you warm
Intuition tells me fire can try, flames in the sky,
In my arms, winter falls when summer collides.


The surest sign I have
That the text will come out to play,
Is lying on top of the sand,
All words work like an element of clay.

So Says I

18 01 2006

Originally uploaded by Kevin V.

I Take it In

I sit in silence,
As you shout or scream,
I look quiet,
As you’ll cut me,

I take it in,
As you break me down,
I feel guilty,
As you throw me out,

I won’t speak,
As you try to get through,
I mutedly listen,
As you make a new bruise,

I don’t look as hurt,
As you want me to be,
I wait for my turn,
As you let your feelings free,

I solemnly stare,
As you quote from your text,
“I must not care,”
As you are prone to expect,

I try not to swerve,
As you snap my cables,
I guess it’s deserved,
As you pound on the table,

I hope to fight back,
As you want me to now,
I know that track,
As you love to throw my logic out,

I close my lips,
As you tear at my mistakes,
I choose not to risk,
As your hate escapes


13 01 2006

A Moment Lost

I felt her breath upon my side,
Chose not to believe for a moment,
Time dissolved, disappeared,
Faded in reverse into the next few seconds,
And this time died a little inside,
I felt it wrench again as it dissipated,
Am I living it right …
Alone again, the dream, the time abated


In the beginning,
There was nothing,
And somehow,
Nothing became something.
Some still believe,
There was something,
And we know how,
Something made everything.

Basic Calculus

Integrate my parts,
Differentiate with respect to me,
Cross this divide,
Find the limit as life approaches c.

Calvin and Hobbes

13 01 2006

“Some people are pragmatists, taking things as they come and making the best of the choices available. Some people are idealists, standing for principle and refusing to compromise. And some people just act on any whim that enters their heads. I pragmatically turn my whims into principles.”

Bill Watterson’s Calvin and Hobbes is perhaps the single greatest heretofore unrecognized influence on me. Like a J.D. Salinger for the misunderstood child, Calvin oftentimes seemed to speak to me personally. Calvin’s unique blend of cynicism (especially of the adult world) and idealism catered to my world-view. In fact, it still does. The oft-quoted line from the strip is “Reality continues to ruin my life”; his philosophy’s only drawback is that it can’t handle the adult world. But is it really impossible?

God, I hope not. Maybe I don’t have a literal Hobbes, but there are many aspects of my life that I live just because I’d like them to be that way. “Whether or not Hobbes is real or not doesn’t matter. What matters is that Hobbes is real to Calvin” – Watterson. When I read Calvin’s interactions with Hobbes, I see a child with the imagination, vision, and idealism to live in the world he’d like to live in; in Calvin’s case, this is a world with a genuine friend.

“I’m yet another resource-consuming kid in an overpopulated planet, raised to an alarming extent by Hollywood and Madison Avenue, poised with my cynical and alienated peers to take over the world when you’re old and weak.” Calvin, trying to scare a neighbor while trick-or-treating.

It was Calvin’s relentless cynicism that made his strip a banned book in my household. With oblivious parents, lonely school life, and overlapping references of “building character”, I felt I connected to Calvin and Hobbes as close friends. I guess we had a few things that kept us distinct from one another: Calvin was wittier, I did better in school, Calvin had a perfect imaginary friend, I had very imperfect real ones, he wore the same clothes each day, and I did not. I learned from Calvin (maybe too much), and from him I began to do what all kids do at some point or another: question authority. I questioned authority; this doesn’t mean I raised a Calvin-sized uproar. I just mused on it. Either way, I ended up being told to stop reading my anthologies on several occasions.

“I think we dream so we don’t have to be apart so long. If we’re in each others dreams, we can play together all night”

Maybe it shouldn’t surprise me that a strip entitled Calvin and Hobbes would relate so much with philosophy. Calvin had style, he had grace. His thoughts on the absurdity of art (often portrayed by his beloved and painfully contorted snowmen), his understanding of the power of media (I still remember Calvin informing his dad that, among the household, his poll ratings were falling), and his word play (“As a math atheist, I should be excused from this”) thrilled me.

“Nothing spoils fun like finding out it builds character”

I could write pages upon pages of the adventures I shared, the laughs I had, and the number of times I re-read “The Essential”, “Authoritative”, “Tenth Anniversary”, and other collections at the dinner table. I derive a lot of my personality from Calvin, and at this point I’m pretty sure it’s safe to say it hasn’t hurt me yet. There’s a lot more to Bill Watterson’s strip than meets the eye; as a kid I sometimes missed things and reread them and had “aha!” moments. Calvin’s unmentioned attraction for Susie Derkins and the experimentation with avant garde art, even the entire Hobbes-may-not-be-real story element flew over my head. Even so, the insight stuck. My greatest lesson? Learning about true companionship.

My favorite quote from Calvin and Hobbes:
“The world isn’t fair, Calvin.”
“I know Dad, but why isn’t it ever unfair in my favor?”


12 01 2006

Matching Drops

Discussing was too light a word for it. Sure you might have called an argument, but really this was just how they talked. “Stop saying the same thing”, one said. “Well,” replied the other, “you obviously didn’t listen the first time”. Neither walked away trouncing the other. In fact, each felt as though they lost the discussion, but were the only ones to realize it. The man’s brown eyes glared askance at the equally distant brown eyes of the woman. Undeniably clear to them was that the discussion would go on, ending any remnant of peace between them, which would, of course, destroy them both. This one solitary argument, played out in minor roles before and strung out on the day, continues to be a rebel instrument. The rain fell outside amidst the chorus of thunder. He cried matching drops as he watched her walk into the rain again.

Some Lost Design

12 01 2006

Some Lost Design

I think I fell asleep that night, waiting for your star to shine. You said it was the one that hung a little low waiting – the mission’s cold on this side of the window. So if I can remember it straight I’m pretty sure I turned away from the Western sky, I looked and I lay waiting for the escape of the Eastern side. I was only a little dreamy while every other part of me culled my dress-dried body to sleep. I’m sorry; I fell into some ocean before I could rearrange these not-too-many lines into a likely pattern or poetic design.

Not Poetry

I don’t like poems,
They cheat with language,
Poets are cold,
Forcing strange rhymes –
Attempting to manage,

I don’t like poetry,
It’s long and mundane,
Too repetitive,
The meter is off –
And still awkward rules to obey.

I don’t like the poets,
They all break and cry just the same,
A change of mind,
A turn of the head–
I’m just another accidental poet today.

Only So Many Years to Live

I suppose creativity bends
At the pace that the mind is spent,
For once you reach the forgotten heights,
You’re left without time.

Your Web

There’s a collapse in the framework of this web,
Some tangled creature has lost himself,
Tearing the very fabric of time’s thread,
Two empty stories unfulfilled.

On Dying Young

I think it’s strange that I’ve always imagined myself dying young. Not that I think it would be especially tragic- I don’t plan on dying until after I’m seventy at least (I’ve definitely got the health for it). Sometimes I think I’d like to die feeling young, thinking that the adventure is never complete, that given the time, I would have filled more chapters. And sometimes I hope that someday I’ll grow old and wise so that I will be able to come to terms with death. It’s not that I believe I’m invincible now – no one at any age has earned such a mental luxury. Nor do I believe that death and living with a “seize-the-day” attitude are necessarily irreconcilable. I just happen to believe that I’m not going to ever feel satiated with my life – I don’t think I’ll ever reach a point and say “yes, I’ve done what I needed to do”. Like so many, I feel I will die without that sage sense of completion. I will die young.

My Reply

10 01 2006


WE are cold,
We are reason,
We are expectations
out of season,
We run by our demons,
And we talk
So we believe us.

A Disconnect

I feel a disconnect,
Some strong apathy,
Maybe they have intellect,
While I’ll just be me.


My experience my desires,
They will take a break and sit together,
They will make their separate peace.

Choosing Carefully

I guess my word choice is poor,
I’m not keeping track,
I’m not the one keeping score,

I don’t mean to use the bigger ones,
When the little ones will do,
Just wish I had the freedom to say,
“I am conscious of this affliction too”.


In death I will absolve thee too

The Traveler and the Guide

He never gave up on the traveler, both were fighters. To the last day, the guide remarked that he had not completed his job. The guide never failed, but nonetheless he felt he needed to give the perfect advice – the perfect tour to complete him. There was one land which this traveler had not ventured through. Seeing it from far away, he was interested in going many times. It was never quite perfectly convenient, but at last he made his way and secured a promising entrance. I don’t suppose you know where it is, but I figure you’ve been through there anyway.

The guide was upset. The traveler was weary, confused by the slowdown. Never before had the guide posed as such an obstacle! Always questioning each other, they made little actual progress (in the eyes of the traveler) and were altogether much too much in the wilderness in the eyes of the guide. I’m not sure you know the questions, but you’ve had those fights.

In the end, he gave his advice, “When in doubt, don’t”, which unfortunately meant the wrong thing to the traveler who, entranced, entered the wilderness.

Dot Com

1 01 2006

The rise and fall of the dot-com industry in the late 1990’s revealed the power of the internet, the effects of hype seen throughout the 1990’s, and ultimately, the continued onset of globalization. The emergence of quick start-ups and the growth of the economy over the course of the decade developed my perception of the world; I came to understand that, using effective marketing venues that attract both impulse and diligent shoppers, earning money can be simple.

The lesson of the 1990’s was: don’t get lost in the hype. Between Furbies, Beanie Babies, Tickle Me Elmos, Pokemon, and Giga Pockets, I learned that the nineties were all about trends. Catching on very early to the Pokemon wave, I set up my first ecommerce venture at the age of eleven, selling cards online. The idea and timing were right, but the implementation was off – and the site was, in business terms, a failure. However, Kevtoys.com taught important lessons – communication, ease of use, and professional looks are key to sales. Furthermore, the site reflected the aftermath of hype – many, many leftover almost valueless cards.

The dot-com boom was the central hype of the late 90’s; its eventual bust, the same as which befell the preceding fads, caught the adult world off-guard. It was a sobering lesson. Though the world had so much to give, you have to be careful with what you take, monitoring exactly what you’re getting, whether they’re plastic playing cards, stuffed animals, or mini-gadgets. Staying in touch is important, but keeping a clear-headed perspective is invaluable. As the world progresses into a global marketplace, entrepreneurs must learn the lessons of the dot-com era: risk-management, diversify, and communicate.