Sometimes I just want to run. I just want to lace up my sneakers, pack my bags and just vanish without a trace. Sometimes I grow so tired by being me that it takes every ounce of strength just to function in the mess that we call a society, and I find myself begging for a way out. Sometimes it can become so crushing to know that I don’t fit in; I don’t belong, and that I will never be at one with my fellow man. Sometimes I wish that I had made better choices when I was younger. That I’d been more willing to accept authority, or that I’d learned to keep my mouth shut rather than constantly shooting from the hip. Sometimes I wish that I just learned to accept that neither the world, nor I, will ever live up to the unrealistic expectations I have created.
Sometimes I wish that I hadn’t screwed up my finances so bad in my youthful ignorance that I could just book a one way ticket to anywhere and leave the man I have become behind. I’m a man of contrasts, a writer of juxtapositions, and sometimes I wish that I would catch the break that I lay awake at night and pray for. I often find myself calling out to Jesus, Allah, Moses, and whoever else is listening. But every single time I do, I wish that the prophets had more to say to me than those heinous words dream on, dreamer.
For this is the life I have chosen. The life of a dreamer. A man who moves throughout the world caught between a bleak reality and a vivid imagination and ideals of what could be. I’m too old to connect with the latest trends, yet too young to admire much of the classics. Too intelligent to accept popular culture, yet not clever enough to consume more intellectual mediums. I’m too stubborn to change who I am, yet I’m far too bitter not to try. I’m too bold to know my limits, yet fear them with every ounce of my being.
So I tread the path of a dreamer; accomplishing nothing except within my own head. I dream of grandeur and a life of fulfilment. I live a life of regret. I imagine my future to be bright. I see my name on bookshelves, my life filled with art and creativity. I picture myself living in exotic lands, spending my years travelling the earth in search of continued inspiration. But my present sees me grounded. I travel the same route every day to a job that leaves me feeling incomplete. Instead of exploring new cities and countries to search for inspiration, I find myself searching my head for a way out of the rut I have created. And when I find nothing I turn to the prophets for guidance, cursing them when they whisper in response to my pleas dream on, dreamer. You haven’t earned it yet.
Sometimes I wish that it would rain. I wish that the heavens would open and cleanse my skin. I dream of that moment where I am caught in a storm so vicious that my pulse quickens and my bones feel as though the sudden chill is cutting them like glass. I pray for the destruction, for the waters to rise up against my throat. Instead I find myself surrounded by an earth so parched that every step I take causes its crust to crack and splinter. I’m wandering endlessly in a barren wasteland, driven by my thirst for something more. Something that seems forever out of reach.
I fanaticise about a world where we worship true art and its creators; where we care not for the status of celebrity, or for the shocking and creatively mundane. I pray for a life where I don’t have to loathe the works of fraudsters cashing in on trends and calling it art. I hope that we can learn to admire true beauty once again, and realise that making ourselves seem attractive on a visual level does not hide the blackness of our hearts. I wish that we could love one another for who we really are, not who we pretend to be through status updates and edited photographs.
But most of all I wish that I didn’t have to dream of these things. That the absence of happiness in my life didn’t leave me with an unending desire to vanish and start anew. I wish that I could travel forward in time and find the version of me who is content. I would ask him how he did it. How he learned to accept the flaws in himself and his world. I would take that knowledge and I would learn from it, so that I didn’t dream of packing my bags to run.
I wish that for once when I called upon the heavens for answers they didn’t mock me as they whisper dream on, dreamer. You haven’t earned it yet.