There is no going back to the place you started from (Alice in Chains)

December 30, 2013


Alice in Chains. Headphones. Loud. Drown.

A new beginning
time, time to start living
like just before we died
there is no going back
to the place we started from

dirt falling through fingers
trust, trust in the feeling
there is something left inside

there is no going back to the place
we started from….

It’s the end of the year. Maryam said: “lets get together and sum up 2013 and make plans for 2014…”


hmm. I dunno if I have plans. And the sum of 2013… dunno either, there is nothing to ad up, there is no graph, no direction. Live the moment and the moments, oh the moments there has been so many.

But right now, right, right now as I hear Jerry’s guitars I would give anything to jump on Arkadaş, lean down on the tank and go as fast as I could possibly go, feeling the machine, the vibrations, the engine sound, the wind, seeing that white line blur out tick, tick, tick faster and faster, seeing the geometric lines between the cars take the risk and go for it.

It’s been an emotionally jarring week in ways I could not quite have predicted. First, it was a Christmas kind of blues I thought I had all wrapped up with a couple of realizations, then an unexpected blast of more emotions came to hit me when my friend Kimberly from California arrived here. I was looking forward to see her and was happy about it but when I found myself face to face with her, something angular from deep inside rose up, something I totally did not know was there, a kind of longing, sadness, immensity… an overwhelming bulk of emotions that sat right there that I didn’t know existed. I wiped the tears and moved on.

But hen the week brought more in the form of having to cut out a budding relationship with someone I liked as I realized it was pointless.

Sometimes, it seems the that long garland of life, this past of mine swirls and plunges in a sort of vortex where it’s shiny feathers shiver and reflect a gray metallic sort of dead glow, twirling towards an infinite dark well. And there I see pictures burst by, like my marriage, the view in the kitchen in Richmond as I howled in loneliness after he was gone, then the light in that same kitchen when I realized some deep truth, yin-yang, bitter sweet process of learning. I see the last lover I had, the gray winter look of Ottawa where I allowed the complete crush of what I used to call my heart into a messy pulp that made me take a very serious look at ending everything terminally to finally take almost exactly a year to mend. I see my face in a computer screen, I see miles of road, the sounds of my songs, the pains in my body, faces of friends scattered across continents… at this point, the tide rises and right there I build a quick dam. Shut the fuck up. Always, time and time again what is left in my hands is that guitar. Yesterday it fell down on the ground and that was too freaky.

In between worlds is where I stand now. At the center of a flux, a back and forth that takes place from the known to the new, from acts coming out of reflex to acts of faith. From the habits, the unthought, the unconscious to the self-determined and thought through actions. These days if I don’t meditate, I find myself dangerously pulled and flung around by the chaos of the unconsciously lived life. At this point I am observing, studying all this.

So this is where my journey has taken me; to an “in between worlds place” right now where the goals and achievements of the physical world mean nothing.

So this guy I had met said to me: “ I will protect you”
I said: “ I don’t need protection”

He generalized: “Women…”
I said: “first we are human beings… ”
He replied: “well you’re different… ”
I thought: “Fuck. Us, them, men-women, separation, materiality”

He asked me if I knew the difference between humans and animals. I pondered for a few moments and thought of how vast the question is. One could say there is none as we are all carbon and electrons and… One could say: they have more hair than we do… It’s a trick questions. Whatever I answer he says “No.” then goes on with the “right” answer.

He brought up the story of an experiment done by some psychologist who put a monkey and its baby in a burning place… the mother monkey protected the baby until it was untenable then stood on the baby to protect it’s own life. In contrast to that, he mentioned the human mother in some hell hole during Nazi time who had protected her baby with her life… “Humans have honor.” He declared.

I said “ Some humans have honor, others don’t.”

“No.” he said.

But I thought some more about it and thought that the same applies to animals. I spent 20 years of my life very close to animals, long enough to see that some would give their life for you and some don’t give a crap. Just like humans. Then I thought that generalizations suck. They just separate us. Again. But he had stopped listening. He’s never interested in my answers. I sighed. He pulled me into a taxi. It’s past 4 AM and the traffic heading to Taksim is unbelievable. A sea of yellow as taxis scramble like in a stampede. Towards Pera museum they are piled up 3,4 wide, jammed, honking and steaming.

“I’m sorry… I’m not listening…” he said

“No you’re not.”

I got off the taxi. Sighed again. The night feels wild. More taxis are parked all along the road, more stream down Tarlabasi speeding away. I press the button for the pedestrian light. Cross. I Walked up the short hill to Chillout. I’m in a strange state of frustration. The wasted time, the long useless waste of that night, the games… Then I wonder… Am I not feeling anything anymore? I am going to break this thing up with him. I know. It’s pointless. It’s a dead end. I believe more and more that this “love” thing is just that. Pointless. A make believe. Be my Prince, I’ll be your Cinderella. Can we be honest. Could we be? Really actually just say what we want. I’m learning this here.

I am dancing clumsily. A tango. Between the flesh and the “City of Placelessness” (Rumi) I dream of. Between the un-thinking reflexes and the conscious. What is it? The sand shifts under my bare feet as the waves pound the coast, yet there is stil a perceptible ground, but nothing is the same, the sand particles, shifted, exchanged. Like a river.

So these emotions… what to make of them? Illusion? Game?

You need… he said.

I don’t need anything… I replied.

And when I think about it, yes, of most things, I have no need besides what makes my body stay functional. Needs? I need to feel useful. Integrate into something that gives my life purpose. and that is, I see more and more others. Ah! the Western Me, Myself and I here collapses into uselessness. The only worthy purpose I see is to make another smile. But things? Nah, don’t need them. Sometimes I crave, but like chocolate cravings there is nothing good about that. It’s just a reflex and like chocolate cravings, if you ignore them they go away.

Emotions… Oh yeah, there is also X who is doing what he does because his wants are to be met and as I try to be zen about it all but I still feel the knife cutting into the flesh so smoothly. Small blade, but blade all the same. I am letting this happen, I’m still playing along…

To be or not to be … roped in. To not imagine the rope at all, or the horse for that matter.

I’m playing a concert tonight at Karakedi with Eren and Joris, tomorrow night at Atolye Kuladibi. That guitar, once more. I’ll pour it all in there.

Happy new months to come. Happy hearts. Happy visions. Happy formlessness.



3 Responses to “There is no going back to the place you started from (Alice in Chains)”

  1. Danielle Liard Says:

    Happy new year my lovely friend. The meaning of life? What’s it all for? To be lived, to share, to give and take as it happens. But most of all to be oneself. Be true to you, and share your beauty as you see fit.

    Much love


  2. David Walker Says:

    We are born alone, we live alone and we die alone. Along the way we reach out to others imperfectly but this is none the less beautiful. What else can we do? Be gentle with yourself Danielle. Love, David

  3. Charlotte Says:

    Oh Danielle.

    To truly just live the magic of now is all we have. I too dream of riding… even though through cold and storms recently. To let you know, when I play your music and go riding it all just feels perfect.

    Love you,

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