Archive for the Inspiration Category

When Night Falls

Posted in Inspiration, Life, Thoughts, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , on June 8, 2013 by Patrick Roe

“It is awfully easy to be hard-boiled about everything in the daytime, but at night it is another thing.”

-Ernest Hemingway

Hemingway said it best. The Daylight is a warm blanket filled with distractions that keep your mind occupied. Then the sun sets, the world sleeps, and you’re alone with your thoughts. Sleep doesn’t always come easy.

Tonight my thoughts are falling gracefully, which is a surprise given their immense weight. They have a clarity that allows me to have some handle on them. This isn’t always the case. Tonight is a lucky night, but sleep still won’t come easily.

I’m thinking a lot about the future, about the changes going on in my life right now, and about the path laid before me. I’m starting to realize what life is truly about. I’m excited to meet the people, see the places, and experience the things that will move and inspire me. I don’t want to lose sight of the miraculous in the mundane. Too many people get consumed in the mundane. I want to be a person worth meeting, to shake things up, and never get too comfortable with the way things are. I don’t mean to get heavy with the quotes, but Bob Dylan said this one best: “He not busy being born is busy dying.”

Truth is easily shrouded with emotion. Eyes are easily fooled by what they want to see. Our minds are often too bogged down to process the miracles we witness on a daily basis. To see the world for what it is is not a gift, it’s something you have to work hard towards if you want to get it right. To get the most out of life is more than just living it, you have to be aware of it.

The thinking and feeling of thoughts is where the true magic lies, so I won’t try to encapsulate them further and run the risk of cheapening them.

Tonight my eyes are open, and life is knocking at my door.

Perceive Those Things Which Cannot Be Seen

Posted in Inspiration, Life, Thoughts, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on March 17, 2013 by Patrick Roe

If someone asks you to think back 10 years ago, chances are you don’t remember a random day. You probably don’t even remember one day in its entirety. A more likely reaction is that a barrage of little memories from 10 years ago will begin to project across the personal theater section of your brain. The first time you met a good friend, a great restaurant, a sexual encounter, a moment of realization, or a moment you’d rather forget. Much like movies, our lives are a series of highlighted moments and we are the editors. We live for so long, but in the end it feels so fleeting because we only remember those fractions of time where we felt truly alive. The less you felt alive, the more fleeting it must feel.

There is a seed of a thought growing in my mind. Forever I have bought into the idea that life, this series of highlighted moments, was the be-all and end-all. Now I feel like life might be the smallest piece, and heaven might be something else entirely. Life is so contradictory, and carries so many individual, intertwined meanings. I just read a news article about a 16 year old girl who died trying to save her 6 year old brother from an icy river in South Dakota. Yes it is tragic, but to say that their young lives were lived only to bring tragedy is an injustice to their souls. They didn’t get 80, 60, or even 40 years; they only had 24 years of combined life but somehow that was enough for them, it had to be enough because it’s all they got. They were hardly old enough to even have lives to look back on.  What did life mean for them? What does life mean now to those who have lost them? Life and death are shared only because we must all experience them, but none of us will experience them the same way.

I didn’t intend for this post to take such a morbid turn, but for most people someone they know passing on is the only time until their own death that they feel face to face with eternity. Its one of those few moments where we all must ask ourselves the most basic cosmic questions and decide how we will attempt to answer them (or not answer them).

People don’t die to make us sad, and they don’t die too soon. Everyone lives and dies for their own purposes. Its all so secular that this life must be only a single step on a staircase to so much more.

“Perceive those things which cannot be seen.”

 

Papa

Posted in Inspiration, Life, Loss, Love, Thoughts with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 27, 2013 by Patrick Roe

Dear Papa,

Is that you in the back of my head? Are you still here? I keep looking for signs, maybe I’m looking too hard. It doesn’t seem real that you are gone. I’m writing this in hopes that it reaches you somehow, wherever you are now. I hope it’s an amazing place that delivers you from everything cold and hard in this world.

Your laugh fills my memories, and still brings me joy. I know the years of suffering made you more somber as of late, but you never lost that sense of humor. That beautiful sense of humor. But what I’ll miss most and what I really feel like I’m losing is your energy. So healing, soothing, peaceful, and serene. I don’t think I ever told you, but you had an amazing presence and it never failed to inspire me. I’m not sure if I decided to pursue art because of you, but you certainly made me want to stick to it. The last time I saw you, you told me if you could do it all over again you would have committed more time to art, so the way I see it I’m creating for both of us. I’m so happy that you lived long enough to see me pursuing a life of writing, I know it makes you proud.

MePapa1 MePapa2

MePapa3 MePapa4

Having you in my life so much as a child shaped me, and helped me to become the person that I am today. Thank you. I do wish you could have stayed just a little bit longer, but I guess we always feel that way about the ones we love. You suffered later in life, but I never lost hope that you would overcome the pain and finally get back to being that person I’ve known for most of my life. My spring break is coming up soon, I didn’t know what to do and I was really thinking about coming to see you. It’s selfish of me to think that you should have waited that long to see me again, but I still wish it could have been that way. I would have loved to see you one more time before you left. I would have loved to say goodbye.

We share a depth, and a darkness. I know I got this from you. I often think of you in my blackest hours, when I think nobody else would understand my mind there’s always that thought “Papa would understand.” I hope part of your spirit will stick around, and help to shepherd me through inevitable dark times to come. I can’t be sure, but something tells me you will.

There is a tattoo on my chest of a raven. I had no idea you were inches away from leaving us when I got it, and luckily you didn’t. You told my mom that if you were to ever die you would come back as an animal, and when my mom asked what kind of animal you said a raven. When I reminded you of that story and what it meant to me, you took the picture below. In my mind that raven is you, resurrected on my chest and above my heart forever. Right where you belong.

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Photo by Joe Polaschek

Forever Your Grandson and Greatest Admirer,

Patrick Joseph Roe

Simplicity is Key

Posted in Inspiration, Life, New Year, Thoughts with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 21, 2013 by Patrick Roe

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We reward simplicity. When a musician makes a catchy song with three chords, it’s arguably more popular than a concierto full of half and quarter notes. When a novelist like Hemingway or “children’s” writer like Dr. Seuss convey the deepest ideas with the simplest of words, we hold on to them tighter. When Martin Luther King Jr. had a dream, it was so simple and powerful it could be summed up in one word: equality.

This concept can seem almost contradictory, since we are encouraged as individuals to lead complex lives. It’s even evident in the language we use. How often do you hear the phrases “there’s more to it than that” or “it’s not that simple” or “I don’t even know where to start”? We strive for something we have been conditioned to avoid, even if we only avoid it subconsciously.  Society in it’s nature is a contradictory and unnecessarily complex thing, an uphill battle to attach tradition & meaning to an otherwise primal existence. Throughout human history we’ve made every effort to complicate our world because the act of living in the simplest sense is too much for us to wrap our minds around.

Complexity is also not synonymous with depth. Part of the reason for this is that it often takes twice as much work to convey something in brevity versus complexity (think about the countless chalkboards of equations it took Einstein to reach E=Mc2).

I’ll stay in line with the theme and keep this post short. If you’ve found this post even slightly thought provoking I challenge you to start thinking of all the ways you could streamline your life, the things you do and the way you think.

“Simplicity is the key to brilliance.” – Bruce Lee

Sappy, Cliche, & Completely Honest

Posted in Inspiration, Love, Opinion, Passion, Thoughts with tags , , , , , , , , , , on February 21, 2013 by Patrick Roe

Modern day love isn’t easy. It seems like it might be with all the forms of communication we are blessed with, but it’s just not the same. Nothing compares to looking in the eyes, the touch, and even all of those little things you take for granted. When that special person in your life isn’t near you, it’s the quirks you miss. The unique things that make them who they are, for better or worse.

What do you do when the one you love is far away?

As a person in that position all I can say is that you make it work, even when it tears you up. Because when you’ve found that person that you can’t picture yourself without, that person that makes you want to be a better person, you have no choice but to push through the pain and pray for strength.

Sure, I might be a hopeless romantic spouting off the most cliche garbage known to man. I only do it because too many people have given up, and I’m not one of them. I know love is too important to give up on.

This is me right now. It might not be pretty, and you might not even give a shit, but it’s real. I’m a man in love, and a man in pain. I’m doing everything I can to stay strong for someone that means the world to me. I have no idea why I’m face to face with this immense hardship. If it’s a test, I’ll pass it. A game, I’ll win it. If it’s fate pushing me to my limits, I won’t break.

It’s not easy, but the best things in life never come easy because they are worth fighting for.

The Laughing Heart

Posted in Inspiration, Poetry, Thoughts, Uncategorized, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 18, 2013 by Patrick Roe

Bukowski. What words to describe you that have not already been used? You fill my cup. You help me drain it. You are dying proof that words are immortal. You’ve done more from your grave than a vast majority do in life, and in life you were the perfect blend of comedy, tragedy, and redemption.

I drink at one of your old haunts from time to time. Someday I hope my picture is below yours behind the bar. Maybe I’m a bastard for saying so.

Look at me, talking to a dead man through a computer screen. It might seem crazy at first, but sometimes there’s more life in words than flesh.

Sometimes.

your life is your life
don’t let it be clubbed into dank submission.
be on the watch.
there are ways out.
there is a light somewhere.
it may not be much light but
it beats the darkness.
be on the watch.
the gods will offer you chances.
know them.
take them.
you can’t beat death but
you can beat death in life, sometimes.
and the more often you learn to do it,
the more light there will be.
your life is your life.
know it while you have it.
you are marvelous
the gods wait to delight
in you.

Some Nights Are Clearer

Posted in Inspiration, Mission, Passion, Thoughts with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 18, 2013 by Patrick Roe

Some nights are more clearer than others. Unclouded by emotion and pure of vision. It has been said that announcing your plans is a good way to make God laugh. Well in that case, may He himself laugh in my face daily. I make my plans known.

However, I don’t laugh in the face of any creator we may hail from, nor do I turn a blind eye to destiny. But I know better than to think that I have no control over my fate. These are strange and uncertain times we live in, and maybe they always were. I won’t pretend to be any smarter or wiser than the next man, but I do know one thing: it takes strength to stand up for anything in this world.

A great deal of that strength comes from pureness of heart and intentions. To feel the full extent of emotion, live up to your word, and take responsibility for your own shortcomings. To be honest and true is uncommon, and separates you from many. It will, at times, make you feel like a stranger in the world in which you live. I feel this separation. It brings with it a sense of loneliness, as well as comfort that I’m doing something right. I am almost certain that no person who accomplished greatness felt the presence of a crowd.

I don’t mean to preach, or make myself out to be more than I am. That is not my intention. My thoughts tonight are with a striving, a lifelong attempt at something greater than myself. A knowing that although the day to day struggles may be intense, and the forces against me may be strong, I will not falter. I will be a good human, strong and pure of heart. And damn me if I don’t accomplish something great in the process.

Tonight, I see the path clearly.

“A taste for truth at any cost is a passion which spares nothing.” -Albert Camus