As published in the Japanese magazine BEEAST
Lebanese-American artist, poet, and writer Khalil Gibran said “We choose our joys and sorrows long before we experience them”. Do we? Maybe we do… Do I? Maybe I do.
I’ve been greatly awaiting spring to unfold its wonders, this year more than any time before, I guess. Maybe it’s because I haven’t seen much light since I came back from Japan last November. Everything goes so fast, too fast for me to truly see, if only as a by-standing witness trying to capture a furtive view of the magnificent seasonal colors I’m in. Maybe I’ve lost perspective of time, musing about the everlasting essence of the invisible. Meditating about long-gone ghosts, sorrows inevitably grow in you. Just like chasing shadows, if you’re ready to become one with these long-gone ghosts a little more every time you go running after missing pieces of memories, illusions inevitably catch on to you… until you lose yourself.
Therefore, when days feel like old photographs slowly losing their brightness through the over-exposed nights spent looking for a place to lay down, when comforting images we tend to secretly kneel before and reminiscence of joyful past whispers become all we have to feel alive, is it the reflection of our own impermanent nature that makes every single morning an even more precious moment to breathe into? As we fade away, as we disappear a little more every day, as we fight to keep a right balance between what is and what you dream of becoming, I now believe that every dawn is a gift, an invitation for rebirth, an open door to new beginnings.
As published in the Japanese magazine BEEAST
March 2nd, 2016 – New York City
In my life, a simple gesture has often revealed itself as being something quite significant. So when Ben, bassist in Your Favorite Enemies and someone I consider my brother, offered me a writing book with a fabulously uplifting quote from Ernest Hemingway engraved in golden letters, I knew it was as special for him to give as it was for me to receive, Hemingway being not only one of my favorite authors, but the words themselves being profoundly significant for me. Ben knows I rarely allow myself to profoundly dwell into most of the adventures I myself invite brothers, sisters, friends and loved ones to not only share with me, but to live to the fullest. It’s while meditating over the nature of those words that I’m writing my very first column for BEEAST magazine, and it’s while contemplating my resolute decision to write as I feel, rather than how I want you to perceive me through words, that I’m opening up today.
I’ve been in studio for several weeks now, and I’m leaving for New York City in a few hours… and as sunrise awaits its invitation to expose its colors to what looks like a reluctant dawn, I’m pondering over those words over and over again:
“In order to write about life
first you must live it”
– Ernest Hemingway
In answer to the Brussels attacks
A message to brothers, sisters, friends, neighbors and loved ones
I woke up this morning by the most violent of all alarms; stupor.
My old enemy was back, hitting at me with his favorite weapons; powerlessness, incomprehension, anger. Bleakness, as if everything had become black and white for a moment, in a flash of total emotional abnegation. I asked myself: “Is that the permanent state of the world we now live in?”. Fear.
I feel terribly worried for my Belgium brothers, sisters, friends and loved ones who are missing. I am compassionately kneeling with those who are devastatingly heartbroken and openly inviting those who are ragingly looking for the same measure of pain to be served to the monsters who brutally ripped away lives in only one name; their own.
And I thought about writing. But what words can I write, what words should I share? Terror, as the life it destroyed, has corrupted every one of those commiserative words into redundant empty shells that vibrate like the echoes of our own voices whispered in the wilderness of our confusion. What else do I have to offer but words? Every time, every single time, I’m asking myself the very same question: “What can I do?”. “If only there was something to be done”, I thought.
Today’s tragedy turned empathetic words into some recycled eulogy perfectly dressed and immaculately aligned for any horrible occasion, turned mourning silences into suspicious self-preservative hideouts for what looks like a personal denial in better tomorrows. Words are only heartless tonality without soul. I’ve learned a long time ago that a true heart cannot fake its distinctive nature, and even if my words might reflect how shaken up I am now, how helpless I might feel and tired I might be to fight the good fight, I’m not ready to abdicate. Not ready to stoically remain quiet or look the other way.