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"Because imagination always seeks a new order and a new individuality, it is always attaching itself to a new reality, and adhering to it. It is not that there is a new imagination, but that there is a new reality. The poet comes to feel that his imagination is not wholly his own but that it may be part of a much larger, much more potent imagination, which it is his affair to try to get at. For this reason, he pushes on and lives, or tries to live, not the verge of consciousness."

Wallace Stevens


A Different Reality

© 1995
By: Alan W. Goodson

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Lonely is the life of a dreamer...Reality's refugee...

...Like a poet, aware of subtle emotions. Conscious of the

ultimate possibilities surrounding every circumstance...

...A dreamer dances...responds...to a different kind of

music. But such a lonely dance it is...While others may

see the writing on the wall, the dreamer reads between the

lines, always in search of the true meaning. Reaching out,

in vain at times, to grasp the final implications of any given

situation...Though able to touch the deepest emotions of those

he loves, he finds it difficult to express his own...Perhaps

the most misunderstood of all personalities, a dreamer looks

for the underlying theme, a wishful view of a different reality.

By: Alan W. Goodson

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Back To The Cabin

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Author's Comments Chapter Intros

Chapter 1

Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8

Introduction

It's hard to say when the idea for this collection of my writing first entered my mind. What started out as an interesting hobby grew into something much more than that. I wrote my first poem at about age twelve. It was a short, simple poem I wrote for my oldest brother who was in Vietnam at the time. I can't even remember the title now but it had something to do with the war and courage of those fighting in that war. I had always been pretty good with words and that poem wasn't really anything special to me at the time but it had quite an impact on my family. My brother had copies made and gave them to all his friends. That really made me happy because my brother was a hero to me and I felt that I had done something to make him proud of me as I always had been of him. Then an aunt of mine, who was a schoolteacher and mostly responsible for my interest in reading, had the poem published in my small hometown newspaper. This was done without my knowledge and embarrassed me badly because the poem was something I considered to be very private and I didn't really care for the general population to read.

As a matter of fact, I vowed at that time that I would never write another poem as long as I lived. I kept that vow for quite a few years too. Actually I kept writing but I just never let anyone see my work or know that I was doing it. To me poetry was sort of a release valve. I was rather shy at that age and had some difficulty openly expressing my feelings. So instead I put them on paper and kept them to myself. Not long after that my "middle" brother, Steve, (I'm the youngest of three boys) was killed in a hunting accident. We had always been very close due to the similarity of our ages and I was devastated by his death. I withdrew into myself for a long time because the feelings I was experiencing were very painful and I didn't know how to ease the pain so I simply turned it inward. That seemed to work for a while. I buried myself in school work and reading and I stopped writing poetry completely. As time went on, however, I began to feel that something wasn't quite right inside me. I felt like I saw things differently than other kids my age. I never saw the joy or the fun in any of the games and things everyone else seemed to enjoy. I was happier just being alone and thinking about things. I felt life was too serious of a thing to enjoy and take for granted like everyone else did. True happiness was just a big lie. Then tragedy struck again. A very, very close friend of mine was killed in a car accident when we were sixteen.

I then decided the horrors of reality were just too much to bear. From that moment on my whole outlook on life changed drastically. I couldn't handle reality as I saw it so I escaped in many different ways which I won't go into here. I'll just say that one day I picked up a pen and tried to put some of my feelings on paper. I guess what I was doing was reverting back to the times when writing my feelings seemed to be the only way of expressing them. I re-opened that old release valve I had found in poetry years before. All the pain and anger flowed out of me in the form of verse.

Many years have passed since then. Most of those old poems are lost and forgotten but I never forgot how they helped me through some of the worst times of my life. Before long my writing again became a secret hobby. "A Different Reality" is the result of that hobby. I takes more than a little courage to expose your innermost feelings to the world but that is what I've tried to do in this book. Somehow it seems to be the only way to rid myself of all those old hurts I had kept inside as well as to search for some of the happiness I forced myself to do without for many years. I believe there are many people out there who can relate to some of the things I've felt and sometimes it just helps to know that you aren't really alone in the world. My only objective is to show the many different sides of this life as I see it and maybe to give you just a little peek at what I call a different reality.

Thank you.

By:


Chapter Introductions

Loneliness ~ Love ~ Lost Love ~ Songs of Life ~ The Search ~ Time ~ Warning Signs ~ The Dark Side

Chapter 1 - Loneliness - top
We've all felt it at one time or another. That indescribable emptiness, that feeling of despair and deep inner pain. In a word, loneliness. For some of us that feeling nearly becomes a part of us. A dark part that we don't always like to show to others simply because it sometimes masquerades as a weakness or an inability to cope with our daily lives. True loneliness is perhaps one of the strongest emotions a human can experience. And it has many faces. It's entirely possible to experience this emotion in a crowd. One doesn't have to be alone to be lonely. It can strike at any time and may never disappear entirely. Everyone has their own way of dealing with loneliness. Some try to ignore it or fill up the emptiness in a variety of ways. Some try to escape from it, and some, unfortunately, decide not to deal with it at all and choose suicide as a way out of the nightmare it can often become. When I first went out "on my own" my job took me away from my loved ones for extended periods of time so, for me, loneliness became as much a part of my life as breathing. No matter what I was doing or where I was it was always there, always waiting to take control and push me into depression. Sometimes it won and sometimes it was a draw but I was never able to conquer the feeling entirely. Many nights I sat alone, writing letters to my girlfriend back home and I would stop and write a poem about what I was feeling, I knew she was having her own difficulties dealing with the loneliness and, for me, it was a way of showing her that we were both in it together and it was something we could deal with together even from a distance. So, in this way, loneliness became an inspiration for many of the earlier poems I wrote. Putting those feelings on paper seemed to help me to understand and control them better. I eventually married that "girl back home" and now I seldom feel that old familiar pain but the memories of how it was are never too deep inside. And I guess it taught me an important lesson as well. It seems that the only way to handle loneliness is to face up to it and share the feelings with another person who may be feeling it too. Perhaps the only thing worse than being alone is suffering alone. So join me now as we walk through some old memories of mine and maybe, if you're lonely now or ever have been, you'll see that you aren't so alone after all. A lot of us have been there before, and survived.

Chapter 2 - Love - top
Ah yes, Love. That many splendored thing that makes the world go around. By far the longest chapter in this book and for good reason. Love is, for the most part, the largest part of our lives and surely the most important. Love is what makes it all worthwhile. Without love everything else in life sort of loses its glow. Many books have been written, songs sung, stories told and lives created or destroyed by love. And still, no one really understands what it is or why it is so important to life itself. But love is something that we don't need to understand to experience or enjoy. Like food or water, it is a necessity of life, without love we can never really reach our full potential or even become a complete person. Love has many different faces. There are as many kinds of love as there are kinds of people. No two people would describe it in quite the same way. The fact is, love is a reality and without it we can never truly be happy or satisfied with our lives. Many of these poems may be hard to relate to simply because love is different things to different people. But I'm sure a few will hold some meaning for you as they all do to me. I certainly hope so anyway. They are all very personal and come straight from the heart but I share them with you because love is one of the few things in life that you can share without actually giving it up.

Chapter 3 - Lost Love - top
For every love found as many or more have been lost along the way. I know I've had my share as I'm sure most of you have. But I feel that true love never really dies. It may fade but a part of that feeling stays with you forever. But the pain you feel when love fades is very real indeed and surely the strongest emotional pain a person can ever experience. Some people don't survive that pain and many are damaged forever because of a love that didn't last. If you could actually lose love completely there would be no pain. But relationships do end and love itself can lose it's intensity over a period of time. And that is what this chapter is about. Some of the poems were written over a love I only thought I had lost but that returned to me and remains with me even now. It's a scary feeling though, thinking that a love has ended. Almost losing it and finding it again can be an emotional roller coaster. As the old saying goes, "you never miss the water till the well runs dry". So I included these poems in the book mostly as a reminder to myself as to how important love is and to make me appreciate the love I have all the more. Perhaps we all need a reminder every now and then.

Chapter 4 - Songs of Life - top
When I first started putting this book together in the form of chapters I had a hard time categorizing some of the poems I had written. Many of them could just as well have been included in other chapters but some just wouldn't fit into the mood I was trying to create so I think of this chapter as kind of a "catch-all" for the poems that just didn't seem to belong anywhere else. Some of them, however, are the best I feel I've ever written or at least the moral to them is very important to me and I feel they belong in a class by themselves. If it seems that I'm trying to play the role of a philosopher in some of them, well, maybe I am. We've all got our opinions and beliefs and a few of mine are stated in this chapter. The longest poem I've ever written is included here and it relates directly to my life only so you may find yourself skipping over "The Visit". The moral to that poem, if there is one, is stated simply in the last verse. Another one, titled "The Trip" is simply that, a poem written about a trip without any moral whatsoever. You might say this chapter is just a break from the more serious poems preceding it. There is no underlying theme here but I hope you can find something of interest. And if really into seriousness read on my friend.

Chapter 5 - The Search - top
This chapter is dedicated to the child in all of us. That person inside who is never really satisfied with life as it is but is always searching for deeper meanings and new experiences. Everyone has had that desire to reach out for more, to find that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Some of us search for it our whole lives while others are content with the truths and realities they find earlier in life. But mankind as a whole is always searching for something more. We could never have come this far if it wasn't for the dreamers among us. The title of this book itself and the opening "poem" are derived from my perception of what a dreamer is. Everyone is, to some extent, a dreamer. We all search for our own reality and everyone of us has a different idea of what we want that reality to be. The world as it is is sometimes pretty hard to take. The whole concept of religion is based on the idea that there's something more out there. Something beyond this life we all have to go through. I've never considered myself to be a religious person but I've always hoped for a better world out there somewhere and I've spent a lot of time and energy looking for that world. I think this chapter best describes that time spent and if there are a few dreamers out there who read this I'm sure you'll be able to relate quite well to some of the things I've written here. So come with me now and let us search for "the underlying theme, a wishful view of a different reality".

Chapter 6 - Time - top
Time has always held a fascination for me. It's something you cannot touch, or feel, or see but it's always there, always moving, and in a way it's in control of us all. We did not create time, we just invented a way of measuring it. What I've tried to do in this chapter is to simply write about the effects of time as it relates to my own personal experiences. The first six poems deal solely with that attempt. The ones that follow those six have more to do with the passing of time and the influence it can and does have on every one of us. Although "Time, Part 6" is subtitled "The End" I seriously doubt that it will be the last in the series. As I go on through life time is always presenting me with new attitudes and feelings and just as time must go on, so must I write about it's affect on me and my feelings on the matter. And to give credit where credit is due, I would like to thank the members of the rock group PINK FLOYD for the inspiration not only in the title of this chapter and many of the poems contained within but also for introducing a young boy of about sixteen to the concept of time. For it was from a song of theirs by the same name that I received much inspiration in the writing of many of the poems I've included in this book. I suspect that the poems contained in this chapter were the building blocks of all the poems I've written in my life. Although some were written recently the idea's which they sprang from have been floating around inside my head for many years now. After you read them you may never look at a clock in the same way again.

Chapter 7 - Warning Signs - top
If there is a message in anything I've ever written you'll find it in this chapter. This is my attempt at philosophizing and my message to mankind. Each of these poems contain a warning of some kind or another. I seriously doubt if I'll ever go down in history being recognized as a prophet but I had to at least try. And this chapter is the result of that attempt. There are so many things in this life that can hurt you it's a wonder that we live as long as we do. And there is much more to be afraid of than just physical pain. Some of the most dangerous pitfalls we can fall into have nothing to do with physical injury at all. With the world advancing at such a rapid pace it's hard to keep up with it all sometimes and in the attempt to keep up sometimes we leave some of the more important things in life far behind. Many of these poems concern that problem. I fear at times that we forget the important things, like love and caring for one another and just being a friend to those around us. After all, we're all in this together and in the end we'll all either prosper together or burn together. So this chapter mainly deals with those emotions we often neglect and in the process it warns us of the result of that neglect.

Chapter 8 - The Dark Side - top
I saved this chapter for last for a some good reasons. Each of us have a side to our personalities that we keep deep inside. Our worst nightmares and deepest fears lie there and we seldom care to drag those fears out in the open for examination. We save that until either the last possible moment or we wait until the fears come upon us without our help. So in a way you might say I've saved the worst for last. Not that I feel that these are the worst poems by any means for in fact, "Apocalypse" may very well be the best I've ever written in the final evaluation. It's certainly the most bizarre. For the most part, these poems deal with the dark side of life and with the realities of the dangerous world we live in today. With the incredible destructive power of modern day weapons it could all be over by the time you finish this paragraph. We live in an age of terrorism. Not just the problems in certain middle eastern countries but here in our own homeland. The ability to destroy all life on earth as we know it today exists in the hands of a very few people. And the sanity of those people is often called into question by some of their actions. It's something to think about but it's almost too scary to think about for long. So what I've tried to do in this chapter is to put it all into a different kind of perspective so maybe it's not quite so intimidating as in real life. The thing to remember though is that the horror does exist in our lives and when it all falls apart it won't be a dream. So please, join me on this final walk beneath the cloud upon the final battlefield into the nightmare world where even your deepest fears can become a reality... a very different kind of reality.


Chapter One
LONELINESS

Introduction

EMPTY GLASS KEEP THE LOVE loneliness
WHEN YOU'RE ALONE LONG TIME CAROLINA RAIN
IN YOUR EYES MIRROR, MIRROR SEASONS CHANGE
CRYING DREAMING NIGHTS ALONE
IF I ONLY AUTUMN MEMORIES

Chapter Two
LOVE

Introduction

DREAMS GO BY SAY YOU LOVE ANOTHER MOUNTAIN
EVERYBODY NEEDS LOVE IS IT ME? AT LAST
MORE CRAZY LOVE ON THE RISE
TOUCH MY SOUL DREAMS ARE REAL LOVER'S THEME
BEGINNINGS I BELIEVE CHANGE
IN ALL MY DREAMS HARD TO SAY BRANDI, YOU AND ME
KEEP ON LOVING YOU FANTASY MANY TIMES BEFORE
TIMES ARE FEW BOTTOM LINE PLAY ME
NEVER TOO LATE THE LAST GOOD-BYE MAKE A WISH
FACES OF LOVE ALL YOU TOUCH

Chapter Three
LOST LOVE

Introduction

IF YOU COULD SEE ME SOLDIER IN THE RAIN SURVIVE THE LOSS
DARK NIGHTS ALONE CRASH AND BURN STAY
WHEN IT'S OVER REMEMBER ME THAT'S HISTORY

Chapter Four
SONGS OF LIFE

Introduction

SHOULD HAVE KNOWN SONG FOR A CHILD IN HOLLYWOOD
THE TRIP IN ARKANSAS THE HIGHWAY OF LIFE
DREAMS SEE ME, TOUCH ME SPRING DAYS
WE'LL MEET AGAIN FRIEND REMEMBERED THE VISIT
ALMOST SUNDAY LAY IT ON THE LINE STILL LOVING YOU
SIMPLE PLEASURE FOR THE HEROS AND THE BOLD

Chapter Five
THE SEARCH

Introduction

SAVE A PLACE DO YOU KNOW SONG OF THE SAILOR
IN SEARCH OF EDEN SEARCHING CHASING SHADOWS
STILL ON THE RUN AGAIN FOREVER AFTER
NO ONE TO BLAME HOME AGAIN PRICE OF FREEDOM
NO PLACE TO RUN THE WAY IT GOES SOMEDAY
WRITER'S QUESTION ANSWERS IN THE WIND BEYOND OUR DESTINY

Chapter Six
TIME

Introduction

TIME (part 1) TIME (part 2) TIME (part 3)
TIME (part 4) LOVE'S REALITY TIME (THE END)
WITHIN A MEMORY REMEMBER LOST SMILES
REFLECTIONS RAINBOW'S END MOMENT'S LOST

Chapter Seven
WARNING SIGNS

Introduction

 

SONG FOR TODAY ASHES TO ASHES RUNNING AWAY
LAST CHANCE CAN'T YOU SEE SINS AND NEEDLES
LONG WAY DOWN AUTUMN LEAVES PLAYING ALONE
DON'T GIVE UP TIME TO FIGHT BELIEVE
WHAT BECOMES WASTED DREAMS WHAT DO YOU SAY?
TAKE SOME TIME ETERNAL POWER IS THIS THE WAY?

Chapter Eight
THE DARK SIDE

Introduction

APOCALYPSE FINAL BATTLEFIELD BENEATH THE CLOUD
ONCE UPON A DREAM NIGHTFALL VISIONS
NO ONE PARADISE LOST  

Acknowledgments

The Author
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Alan W. Goodson