Insane and luving it

(My Birthday / A Hospital)


My metaphor is short for some
But longer for others.
I won’t quite know when I’m finished. You shall have to guess.
It will be expensive, as I am spending time
And time is money.
It is different with every reading.
Every time it is read, you can interpret it differently.
But my metaphor is best read and savoured.
Stirred, not shaken.
And when I look back on it, it’s embarrassing.
But what’s printed can’t be unprinted.
Maybe you don’t understand it.
Maybe I don’t.
(Which, let’s be honest, is the more likely of the two)
It is in poem form.
Because that’s how the rules are laid out
Rules you ask?
“Yes, the extended metaphor rules”, I reply
With a certain unfathomable look in my smile.
But each metaphor is different. How can there be rules?
“If you followed them all you’d be in even more of a muddle than you already are”, is my reasonable answer.
“Curiouser and curiouser”, I hear you mutter.
“Yes”, I answer, to no one in particular.
You see, my metaphor has a beginning, a muddle, and an end.
It started off fairly pensive, but has progressed to more unknown topics.
Dipping your toes in the deep end of the pool, you might say.
You’re not quite sure where it’s going, are you?
“No”, you say, with a certainty in your voice that no one could mistake for pride.
It is the certainty of uncertainty of the situation.
“Not sure what you got yourself into. Having second thoughts? ” I question.
But, if life is a metaphor, what is it a metaphor for?
Surely not a rollercoaster!
No. we shall not go into that topic.
Life is channelling a metaphor.
Or perhaps I am channelling madness.
Or all of the above.
It’s you’re choice.
Maybe life is a tongue-twister.
The cool people got the tongue twister long ago, and are now making up their own.
And everyone else is trying to get their tongues around it. Really bite their teeth into life.
Whether you like it or not, life is a metaphor. Extended or not.
All metaphors have a point in them. You just have to find them.
The point in this one, for example, is that no life is the same, so no life can be described as the same. And that life is as con-be-me-fuddling as this metaphor.
“Oh! ” You exclaim. “I understand the mad ramblings now”.
And then as soon as you think it all makes sense,
You understand nothing. Nothing. But more importantly,
No one understands you!
These are the words that tumble out from my mouth as we dive into the realm of teenager hood.
Because, of course, no one understands this metaphor, not even those who have experienced it all before you!
(Those poor souls)
It’s all hard on you, isn’t it?
You’d prefer something less confusing, wouldn’t you, pet?
“Yes”, you mumble, through tear-stained eyes.
Well, the befuddlement doesn’t stop here, my friend, oh no.
“Oh no! ” you echo, like a cave wall.
We must now dive into the next part of the confusing metaphor,
Swimming through the sticky, cobweb-like substance
Which is now your independence.
You groan on the inside.
“Not more nonsense! ” You screech!
But no, it must go on. You cannot make it stop unless you pull out now, and get angry with the metaphor.
“But the metaphor is your friend! ” The letters cry out to you.
You may give up now, like the poor other sad souls who preceded you.
Or you may continue.
Yes, you will. I can see that.
Your independence means you can interpret this riddle however you like
So long as the choice you decide on is right for you, and for you only.
It’s your choice.
More than anything, the metaphor is confusing.
“Really? ” You exclaim, in mock surprise.
“Really.” I answer, taking you seriously.
No matter which way you turn it as if to read it better, it still makes no sense.
“Why is the metaphor nameless? ” You question, trying to catch me out.
“But it isn’t! You’ve named it ‘the metaphor’”, I reply, triumphant.
For I am the philosopher of the metaphor.
These letters shall bend to my will.
(“Oh no! Not again! ” they bawl, missing me by millimetres as they throw their tantrum at me)
You have listened to my ramblings.
Now interpret them how you wish. Make what you will. It is not my choice, it is yours.
I can only guide you, not lead you,
Holding your hand as we wade through the soup of words.
The metaphor men may mark me low, but my nonsense makes sense if you replace every word “metaphor” with the word “life”.
Well, it makes more sense at any rate.

Submitted: Monday, September 07, 2009

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