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Ego Death

You must be ready to burn yourself in your own flame;

how could you rise anew if you have not first become ashes? - Nietzsche


If you have not experienced yourself as dust

How are you to know the worth of your breathing

Or of your being?

Dust to dust, petal by petal

And tree by leaf we renew

As if our own souls were the seasons, fluctuating

Like leaves in the breeze when they flutter and fall

Whilst we crawl lifeless on our knees and then rise anew.

The cycle ensues for death is but a beginning

And the beginning is but a ceasing of the end

They say birth is the most violent closeness to death

And chaos but we live. We breath.

We fall headfirst into our grievances

Seething with hands full of lost time

So that we may not clutch to stop ourselves

From the fall into ever-falling further.

Fixity and flux

We hold the crux of meaning without feeling

Our closeness to nothingness

For how could we?

Create enough chaos and you have peace

For once you lose it all, everything becomes possible.

Call it poetic justice or simply scream

And scream and scream

Until it all becomes soundless, screamless.

That’s all our writing ever is; an awakening

From the dreamless way in which we sleep our days into being,

A cure to our grief that hangs like the sky,

Ever-present and all consuming.

A canker of rage cages us in and presumes

As if we had never known love.

All this creation is but structuring,

A surface to hide the void.

You tell me I am nihilist

I say I am but an artist

Kneeling with my wrists tied

Begging the sun for mercy

Like a wingless Icarus.

We gasp for sense,

And structure in the shadows

But with hands raised to a godless sky

We find only shapelessness yearning for form.

And so, we carry the burden of living

And we burn with the words

That never escape our lips,

For living is ever such a heavy business

But with heaviness comes beauty

And it is our duty to hold the weight of it all.

If I could unsay and undo all I have said

I would be but a dead pile of matter.

Our words have made us

And torn us all apart

But without them we are formless.

Amidst the terror we have the madness,

the fury and the sadness of generations

Which inhabit us like insidious inks,

As we mourn the guilt of our past.

The cicada sings again but it never stopped.

For history is nothing but carnage stemming from misjudgement;

Nothing but triggers and aftermaths

wrapped up within us ready to repeat.

We are one great anachronism,

A woven palimpsest of future and past

Whose very being defies time itself.

History lies in the beat of the human heart

Because human nature will never know limit

As it has never known it for years.

We’ve spent so long marvelling at our selves

That we forgot all else,

And in doing so we placed the soul in a girdle

And encircled it with iron chains

of greed and self-obsession.

We forgot formlessness and renewal

In our shying away from the match and fuel

That would burn the limits all to cinders.

So now we must return to dust

And in it, find peace.

Petal by petal, tree by leaf

Dust to dust, we breathe and cease.

Burn now, alight, alight, be free

And only when you've become ashes

Can you truly 'be'.

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