If I new last night what I know now I would have finished my letter to KURT. After all, today is his day of mourning. Though the way I look at it he is to be mourned from the 5th to the 10th of every April. Mourned and celebrated!
Anyway, I started to write him a letter last night, but that was before. Before I got to the end of a book simply titled "Sleepers" by Lorenzo Carcatera. Before I stayed up all night, before I checked my clock which said it was 6:15AM Easter morning. Before I cried so hard I couldn't breathe and snot dripped off my nose and onto the floor where my arms were folded and my head rested in between the space they created. Before I was back there, with my mother and my brother.
To sum it up in one short sentence, "Sleepers" is about 4 friends living and growing up in Hell's Kitchen in New York who have one prank go wrong during 1968 the Summer of Love and are forever changed by being sent away to the wilkinson home for boys.
Of course, that is the short version. The long version is filled with their sexual abuse and torment at the hands of vial guards who are no better than serial killers in my humble opinion! Only their the serial killers of minds, bodies, souls and spirits. People think the damage done to a person is somehow 'less than' because they didn't murder them outright or didn't canabalize them the way albert fish or jeffrey dahmer did. That somehow makes it more tolerable, only it isn't more tolerable! I looked for ANY possible sign that this was fake. Even though I NEW it was a 'true story' from the outset, I prayed, hoped, pleaded and begged for it not to be so. I wanted it to be anything else!! Anything!! It wasn't. It was all to real, to true and to horrific! So why does this haunt me so?
My mother was abused 'once' at the age of 6. But once was to many times and reading this book only gives me a slight insight as to why she became the person she became. Note: I did say a slight insight. I feel like what Lorenzo described is/was just the tip of the iceberg. My mother wasn't in prison, but she might as well have been since it was back in the 60's! And my brother. . . He is dead of a meth overdose, only EIGHT years my senior. EIGHT YEARS!!!! And he to was sexually abused. I know even less about his than I do about hers. He didn't even share this with me, she did.
And laying on my floor this morning at the end of the book, seeing Johnny and Tommy become murderers and Michael and Lorenzo and Father Bobby get them off in their 1980 murder trial of one of the men who tormented them as children, only to have Lorenzo conclude with their untimely deaths in 84 and 85 respectively was a crushing blow to me. I wanted to kick and scream about how it wasn't fair!!!
It probably doesn't help that I also just read "Road Out of Hell by Anthony Flacco and Jerry Clark, son of Sanford Clark, a boy who was raped and tortured in the 1920's by his uncle stuart northcot and forced to participate to varying degrees in the murderers of approximately 20 boys and young men. Yes, I finished both books in one very long day. I have a voracious appetite for nonfiction. Though I sometimes think I'll swear it off for fluffy fiction about bunnies and flowers and all that is good in the world! After all, I won't listen to the metal band canabal corpse for this exact reason, lyrics to ugly, to horrific. . . but a book on the other hand. . . a book is filled with real life experiences. Somehow that makes it better for me to read it than to hear it. The same horror that makes it real, the details of a narative also make it acceptable to read or watch in the case of Law and Order: Special Victims Unit for that precise reason. If it's just made up lyrics it's bs, but if it's a true story than it's not. I look for insight. Insight into the mind of the abused and insight into the minds of the serial killers and abusers. I seek out insight because while I long to believe I'm an inherently good person, I to have been abused and sometimes find sadistic relief in imagining the torture and destruction of those people, bullies, the nurses who held me down and jammed a mask over my face for surgery, and yes, even my family who have occasionally wronged me. And then I find myself wondering if I'm 'normal' in my thought processes or if I'm a horrible person for imagining them suffering. Of course, I don't want them to suffer like that. When I think of making them suffer I imagine punching and kicking and beating them. But then I read stories like this, real, true stories and I curl up and wail like a baby.
So now this afternoon after 5 and a half hours of sleep as I sit here writing this I come back to the conclusion I've been circling around for years.
I am a good person because I could never do what those guards did, what stuart northcot did, or even what my tormenters did to me. In fact, the only time I could throw down like at the Okay Corral would be if someone laid hands on me first. After that, I'd need someone to hold me back, because I wouldn't just punish them for assaulting me, I'd punish them for what every bully did to me, what every operation did to me and even for what was done to my mother and brother. I do my absolute best not to hold grudges, but it's all buried in there somewhere. No matter how hard I try to cleanse myself, it's all there. Just under the surface it lurks, waits to be activated.
Anyway, this post veered from where I think I was originally going with it. I was going for the emotional impact, the fact that I just had to get what I read out of my system. I just had to put all my feelings about it somewhere. I've done that and now I'm not positive what the intent was besides to put it down.
I don't know if I can just leave it. I don't know if I know how, if I've ever known how to put something down, whether it was a book or my past.
All I know is the shockwaves and reverberations of what monsters like those guards did last forever. They role donhill, down the generations and leave indellible marks on everyone they touch. It's like the death of a legend. The only upside here is that ist isn't in the closet anymore.
My mother and Lorenzo may be two people worlds apart, but they both did what they had to and finally stopped hiding and burying it. Sanford Clarke didn't bury it completely though his abuse was 40 years prior. He to had the courage to stand up and that must count for something.
I have no words to express my gratitude to people who share their stories. I would venture a guess that they give me the strength to expose my story different though it may be. Without those who've come before me I would have never had the courage to write my own autobiography.
It can be very expensive to tell the truth, make you feel like you're paying a high price for being honest with everyone else and most importantly, with yourself. Because of these people and lyricists like KURT COBAIN, SHAUN MORGAN and Maynard James Keenan I to can afford to pay the price, to be honest about my story.
Thank you all.
With Love and Gratitude,