Clinging can be a symptom of fear,
obviously so when you cling to fear.
But ... "the only thing we have to fear
is fear itself": bullshit then, bullshit now.
A necessary lie, however: people
seemed to need it to get by, by and by.
Me, I cling to books in general and
particular, going so far as to keep
particular books in bed. They are
objects and talismans to me, not
simply stored data, you see.
I cling to other things--like my
father's pickup truck, my mother's
piano, a woodpecker-toothpick dis-
penser I used to play with on my
aunt's kitchen table; also notebooks,
baseball cards, on and on: the less
valuable, the better. I don't collect:
To old opinions. To old friends--until
they finally shut the friendship down
by not sending that annual card.
To scenes from childhood, good and bad.
To memories of people who did bad but
through corruption came out well. To
the idea of justice. To things people promised--
including me. And of course it's all about
me, see, the clinging. If I hold on, it won't
change, or it still exists somehow, or it
won't go away, or . . . .
Bullshit--then and now. My clinging's folly.
The Buddhists say don't get attached. I've
clung to that idea. I get it. Still I say,
"Fuck you--that's the same as saying
don't breathe oxygen." Bullshit then,
bullshit now, grasshopper.
Do you cling? I hope so. Just enough,
though. Aim high . Stay low.
Copyright 2011 Hans Ostrom