Am I merely an assemblage of memories and experiences or was there something in me at the beginning of my inception as a human being? How does one find one’s purest self, unclouded from the world of prejudices and judgments and tastes?
Throughout our human existence, the world entices us toward her opinions, religions, and ways of being. When we die, we shed all these artificial garments of self as snakes shed their skin or trees their foliage.
One might ask themselves when am I my most authentic self, and when am I pretending?
This leads me on to a related question: why do we like what we like? Why is my inclination towards folk and not rap? Why do I have a propensity for staying up till the wee hours of the morning? We attribute some of these elements of ourselves to genetics, our families, environment growing up, and what we were or weren’t exposed to. Sometimes we look to astrology or the belief in a past life to explain who we are and why our thoughts and minds shape into a particular form. Once all of these fixtures fall away, are you left with a skeleton of yourself? What truly makes you, you?
In my humble opinion, herein lies the greatest purpose of a singular human life: to create one’s destiny out of the rubbish of the old world’s stale opinions and breath, to breathe new life into the body marred by a parent’s love or lack therein; to sculpt into new form the mind out of the genetic material one arrived on this planet with; to confer with one’s heart and find it beating to one’s own drum; to pull the planets and stars down and give them new names.
The greatest achievement for the human being is to write their own creation myth and mold themselves into something utterly new, a force to be reckoned with.
Today is Palm Sunday. It's also Day 18 for me being on the road. We started out in Los Angeles, California, drove through parts of Nevada and Arizona and ended up in Salt Lake City, Utah the next day. I feel like Jack Kerouac's ghost is leading the way. To make that sound less ominous, I'll call him a spirit. When you wake up in a new place every morning, in a different bed, well, sometimes you forget where you are. That's the excitement of the road though. At least I'm not sleeping in cow pastures. There's always something new to see. Colorado is a very inspiring place. When Katharine Lee Bates wrote a poem in 1893 that turned into an iconic American song, "America the Beautiful" and spoke of the "purple mountains' majesty" she was speaking of Pike's Peak. When I'm not writing poetry, I'm taking pictures to capture the magic of our adventure. Here's a morsel of prose for you. "Flow away down the Colorado river with me as we pass homemade signs for B&E's Antiques and a bakery next to a drive-through liquor store. We'll zoom passed sparse fields brown patched with tough green stubble. One purple tree stands out among a set of cedars and cottonwoods. There's a brownstone steeple on a Presbyterian church, and a dilapidated muffler shop neighbors an apple orchard."