Anthem II

The current incarnation of the Silver Surfer was born November 3, 2005 in Johnson City, Tennessee, where it manifested itself in the form of my daughter. I learned this four nights ago while taking a bath with her. As she slowly poured bath water from a cup into my cupped hands, water trickled through my clenched fingers, and epiphany poured outward from the top of my head.

Galactus, who was a type of God in that He consumed planets for sustenance, created the first Surfer as His herald, transforming his shape into a matter like living silver, filling in his lungs as they would no longer require oxygen, and re-making his whole body into a being that could withstand the cold of space, flung him into it, a true seeker born of wrath.

The Surfer became impossible to behold, nameless and brilliant, reflecting whatever light found its way to him, the light from exploding stars, collapsing nebulas; he banked against black matter, navigated worm holes without conscious thought, traveling faster than thought. He pierced constellations the way the sound a guitar makes pierces the fabric of reality in the hands of a fourteen year old boy in a garage in Achilles, Virginia.

The song the boy makes is the same song of this blog, ragged and brave, it is music to obliterate everything. I don’t expect you to understand. It is the song of the forever struggle, committed in rooms pungent under the smell of pine. It is the song of my gift: A spear wound got in my side at six years old in Chickamauga, Georgia, an ache to carry with me always. There is no-one to blame for any of this.

I once cut open an orange pepper and found, frightening under the neon lights of the commercial kitchen, a pair of smaller peppers growing within its cavity, like ovaries. I remember my own lost tonsils, poisonous, abscessed years before at the gate of my throat and salt water rushing over them from the Atlantic in November, surfing before hurricanes. Others, burned-out teenage heroes, bobbed yards down-current from me in the pocked-grey heaving mass of ocean, each of us holding close whatever warmth our wet-suits would allow. Our Atlantic, who birthed the sun and moon each day, gave us these gifts, un-numerable: line upon line drawn over His living surface, wild and blue, crashing ever Earthward with us riding.