Where do I find the beginning of heaven? Can I find it where the swinging treetops stop, where the swallovs are dancing their airballet with the last summers litter of chickens? Is it at the highest of mountains, over the rainbow, above the next hilltop, or is it where the grass sprouts in freshly sown soil warmed by the april sun? Are we in that case allready in heaven? Is heaven barely space between planets and stars? Is heaven a physical condition like ecstacy, happiness, or satisfaction? Is heaven peace of mind? Is heaven something that is, like strawberries with cream, a delicious, home-baked piece of pie, a skydive, new driver licence, or straight A’s at the final exam? Or is heaven something that is not, like the absence of sorrow and suffering? Can I find the beginning of heaven at the end of my own personal hell? Or is heaven all of this? If heaven comes after hell; if heaven comes after all of this, what will there be after heaven? More of heaven, or nothing? Just vacuo?
I saw Nirvana in a tube of glue in my fifteenth summer. I was introduced to the dark secrets of the repair kits in the backyard of a local gas station right next door to the stadium where I for many years had jumped both high and far, and ran an endlessly number of rounds on red, brick coloured gravel. At school we had been through more than one period of awarness to the danger of drinking, smoking and heroin addiction, but never had any adult had a serious chat with us about sniffing glue.
We had plowed through books such as Hard Asphalt and We children of Banhof Zoo. I was terrified of heroin. I was terrified by the bare thought of becomming a junky or a drunk. I was scared to death to end up like Ida Halvorsen or Christiane F.. I would never have touched heroin. I still hadn’t got the taste for alcohol, but I let my self convince by the innocence of a substance anyone could buy at a sporting goods store without id or permission from home. No warning from parents nor teachers. Highly recommended by the school’s very misguided slut. We found what we searched for in that tiny tube. Some found excitement. I found Nirvana.
I traveled to the music from the rotor blades on a helicopter I couldn’t see. Somebody gave me a plastic bag with a few drops of glue, I put it against my lips and breathed in and out a couple of times. Then the helicopter arrived and took me away to the most peacefull place.
It was the most delightful of all delightful glades in the mildest of all mild forrests on the most wonderful of all wonderful summer days. The sun was shining through the crowns of birch trees and made the sky shimmer as a ballroom queen, and the leaves of the blossoming aspen was shivering of excitment in it’s summer green. The legs of the birch trees stood proud in their youth; smooth and white as snow, rough and black as charcoal. The ground was covered in soft and warm grass, uncut and disheveled, bright green and sweet. Somewhere between here and there a creek was trickling her melody accompanied by birds arguing over territory. A kitten blinked lovingly at me, and I laid down and let my self be filled with perfected peace.
Then it was over as soon as it had begun, and I was back in the shadows in the filth in that backyard next to my childhoods stadium of glory which was now a part of my past. Forgotten like my innocence was buried in the ground of an hallucination. My mind and soul was screaming for more, and my heart was filled of longing for what I would never experience, never feel again. And God knows I tried. I searched everywhere, or at least at those weird, hidden places were I most likly would find what I was longig for. In an old, abondoned truck. In a playhouse at a neighbours house. In my own bed. At school. In someones caravan. In someone else’s garage. The last place I searched was in the tower of some playground equipment in a small town in southern Germany. There I found something else. A big raven with shiny, black feathers and ancient eyes came flying over my head and landed on my left shoulder. Suddenly my search was over.
One year later I finished secondary school. I celebrated somewhere between completely wasted and comatose.