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The Ceiling Fan

As I lay awake

On a couch

That's a little too small for me,

On the last night

Of this bachelor party,

In Lake Tahoe,

My mind

Turns up the volume,

And that's probably a result of

All of the:

Psychedelic drugs,

Booze,

Weed,

Adderall

And stress,

That's in my system right now.

I gambled

when I shouldn't have.

And I drank

more than I should have.


The fan on the ceiling

is so loud,

but the speed and volume of my thoughts

is deafening;

and as a result,

I cannot sleep—even though the body

has no juice left in it.

I felt overwhelmed by exhaustion today;

but I had to stay up for a boxing fight that I had placed a bet on earlier, when I was more ambitious.

After the fight,

I was sure my guy won;

and when he didn't,

I was shaking.

I had lost money that I needed.

$1,000 could change my life right now,

and that is such a sad reality for a 30 year old man.

But here I am.

And now down $500 for this trip;

Which is really unfortunate,

Because I've been evicted from my house,

And have 3 weeks to find a new one.

I might've had just enough money to do it, too.

But,

Not anymore; not now.


The fan needs a bolt tightened,

that's for sure.

It spins, and spins, and spins.


I toss and turn.

More than restless—tortured.

And the more I try to calm the mind,

the worse the torture gets.

I tell myself to count backwards from 100.

I get to 70 before remembering how much I hate my job; and now, with this, I can't afford to look for a new one anytime soon.

And the volume just gets louder and louder.

I tell myself to take 10 breaths.

I take a few.

I hit my pillow, and rearrange my blanket.

Nothing.

I go pee.

Still,

Nothing; no sleep.

I try to force my thoughts to be steered toward more peaceful things;

but we can't truly control our thoughts,

can we?


The stream of consciousness, it flows and flows and flows; and my intuition tells me that trying to control it, or force it,

is like trying to damn that stream.

So I try to let go, and ride the ride that is my present mind.

Still,

Sleep evades me.


This damn ceiling fan is so loud!


Then,

I decide to try to talk the big guy,

even though I don't really know what that means.

I ask him for help.

I ask him for sleep.

But all he keeps saying is,


"God is other people. God lives in other people. You want my help? Then, what you want is their help. God is in our relationships. God is in all living things. God is in other people. I am you, too. And also, I am nature. God is everything. God is other people. God is them. See their faces in your mind? I am them. God is another person. God is other people. God is other people."


Over and over again,

these words, from somewhere, spin around loudly in my mind.


This damn fan!!


And then,

I wake up with a massive leg cramp in my calf.

I have to stop myself from screaming, so I don't wake up the boys.

Finally, it stops.

I look up at the clock,

And it's 4:30am.

I got a few hours;


And now,

The ceiling fan doesn't seem as loud.


-C.H.


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