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Chaos, Control, and Concrete

My addictions are three-fold: certainty, control, and chaos. I pour God like concrete, then I pound the earth when I’m denied entrance to the Divine depths. I can walk and skip atop this seemingly solid foundation, but if I stumble I will not be cradled. I’ll be left skin kneed and bleeding from the head. I am not concrete. I am supple, sensitive, porous by nature, shifting with each big breath and constantly in danger of being blown over. When this unyielding hunk of sand and mortar injures me, I scamper behind the nearest tree or person and suck my belly towards my spine. I pretend not breathing and squeezing my eyes shut will make me small, invisible, and protected. I cover my face and think “Concrete, you don’t exist! You can’t see me, if I can’t see you.” Then concrete is dead to me, until my next certainty craving comes along.

Control dances in front of me like a Jezebel in silk skirts, hips tilting and hands raised. There is artistry and passion in the way she moves her fingers She gazes back at me with chin lifted and eyes mocking. We both know I will never be her. I’ll never taste the salty sweetness of her bare shoulder. She’s so stealthy. When her hands and hips stop twisting, I think it’s my chance to get closer, but as I initiate my first step she disappears. I’m not certain if her dance is real or a figment of my imagination. In my attempt to court her, I’ve worshiped many imposters. During those times I never saw her. She didn’t even flick a wrist in my direction.

Control is often subtle and sly, but chaos never plays that card. Chaos is a gambling man. My gambling man! When the cat and mouse of control wears me down, I run to chaos. I crawl into his lap and let him nibble my neck. I peek at the cards he’s concealing on the table.

He drawls into my ear, “How much you wanna bet, sugar?” The worse the hand the more likely I am to go all in, not because I think my bluff will take the pile but because there’s an ecstasy in complete and utter abandonment. I dare the other players to call so I can fly free and fucked on my wild ride. I want everyone to know that we reject the rules of their game. Chaos doesn’t like clothes or jobs or other people. He definitely isn’t fond of concrete or control. The latter reject me and hide from me. If I’m desperate enough, flirty enough, or reckless enough, chaos always lets me in. Chaos tries to leave, too, but he beckons me to follow. Sometimes I follow him for days, weeks, or months. I see a lot on those journeys, but I rarely like where I end up. I start to crave sturdy and gentle. So much craving.

That’s the thing about being an addict. Craving can be thunderous. Perhaps one definition of addiction is to experience craving so intensely that the mind perceives it to be unbearable. I’ve been addicted to many things in my life. I remain sewn to many of them: sriracha, coffee, romance, rock climbing, and my current identity to name a few. Nothing pulls me quite so powerfully as a God that I can rub my hand over like rough and certain concrete. A God I can define with my mind and touch with my hands. A God that breathes like me, has gender like me, and eats large quantities of cheese like me. When I find that I cannot hold God in my hands, I reach out for something else to hold: a sense of control in a world ridden with trauma and terror. I rifle through pants and bags looking for a crumpled piece of paper that reads,“ Permission to Give Absolutely No Fucks.” It’s the kind of thing you pull out of your pockets along with lint, a paper clip, and wrinkled dollar bills when you’re trying to cover your fifth drink.

I’m in recovery. Recovery from the self constructed image of a hard, limiting, judgmental God. Recovery from fleeing to chaos and blinding denying its inherent order. Recovery from the cosmic joke of concepts like control and certainty.

This leaves me alone with mystery, floating in vastness. I discard chaos’s hidden rule-book laden with odds and ticking time bombs. I cease trying to catch control. I’m free to enjoy her wiggling hips and beckoning arms from afar. When God becomes a word that contains everything I can perceive, along with everything I cannot, it holds hardness and softness, darkness and light, power and love. God is birth. God is death. God is the space between creation and demise. God is nothing. God is everything. I don’t know what God is. I’m recovering from pouring concrete.


Yogi Gone Rogue


Anika Spencer | San DIego, CA

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