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Fall 2009. Some observations from inside the big machine, and thoughts on the little slices of reality I can see out the portholes.

I am a ruggedized animal. The binocular vision and bowels of a predator, and institutional knowledge of violence passed down like elephant memories; fur augmented by ultrasonically welded artificial hide and joints sealed at the depot, needing no maintenance for a hundred thousand miles; claws kept meticulously trimmed to fit neatly into the loop of a trigger guard; bayonet sharpened as a last resort gut hook. I will lope over plain and mountain in pursuit and fortify my den against all threats. Instincts learned and honed to a razor edge of efficacy, always adapting to defeat carnivorous rivals.

Ritual combat is a waste of killing spirit.

Statistically speaking, my primacy in human existence is unmatched. The resources at my disposal are beyond using. I am fed, clothed, and supplied on demand. My signature carries the authority to move material worth more than the yearly earnings of one hundred average citizens of the richest country in the history of the world.

Civilians are an afterthought.

I have been put here to murder as efficiently and as discerningly as possible. I am both more and less than a tribal machete hackjob. I am not to genocide. I am to kill only that which chooses to stand up and be killed. The world is divided into three categories: Those who are not to be killed, those who are to be sought and killed, and those who are to be killed when it is convenient to do so. Each person chooses the category into which they will be sorted. Free will is never to be infringed.

Compassion is extended only to liars and the meek.

I am to unflinchingly face fire and ice, horror and blood, the mutiny of allies and the scorn of the occupied. I am to preserve my life as a service to those who paid to put me here, except in the case that my death would leverage itself against the deaths of those who are not to be killed. I care more for the other bipedal animals sleeping around me than a mother cat cares for her kittens, for while we both would rush into gunfire as would-be saviors, the mother cat doesn't know what a PKM is or what it will do to a would-be savior.

Courage is trading the sorrow of another family for the tears shed by your own at a closed casket funeral.

Build an exoskeleton up out of mission and duty and soon it stands on its own. The humanity inside atrophies, brain wasted from a lack of variety, eyes too weak to see without a $30,000 pair of electronic wonder goggles, heartbeat torn to whispers from years spent compressed under the armor plates. And then what do you do when the exoskeleton gets taken off for the last time?

Real life is a consequence of abandoning ideals.

I need to figure out why I thought I could do this. I need to figure out what I think I can do instead. I need to know if this is who I really am.

Do I dare to break the cycle? Can I be re-civilized and will I be allowed to?

What the fuck happened to being an astronaut?


Some day.

I will be a pilot flying over the Northpole
dropping bags of frozen fish
to impoverished penguins

I will be a doctor in Africa
white lab coat and khakis shorts,
bringing a cure for malaria to a village of thousands

I will be a rock star/astrophysicist
taking time out from my European tour to
discover an energy source made from moon rocks

Some day,
I will be so many things.

But tonight I will quietly sit on the floor,
with arms wrapped around my knees
in place of someone holding me.

I will be hard and silver and pure without fear. I will be needed and I will be your tool, I will be the wall and I will be the nook wherein fits the hook; bind me, undo me, unleash me. I have been molded and I have been shaped but most of the time I have just grown into. I am no more of silver and dark as I am made of sugar and sprinkles and stars exploding at night; but it´s the image that fits my outfit. I am not your mystery nor your enigma and I certainly never was yours to own; but what you can´t hold you try to break. What I am is the softest whisper, guiding itself back to your ear, there I will nestle like an unassuming blood clot. For all the world to know, I have the greatest patience. Time is on my side as I am always hard and silver and absolutely, unmistakably pure of heart. Others joke candidly or fake without a spur of neuroticism. But I was made to be honest and true, and I will hurt you as much as you really need me to; you can trust me. And long after you no longer need me to break you, I will break you. The fear has been burnt from my flesh as the stars were torn from my eyes; I glitter and shimmer like clear metal, I keep my word.

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