Back to Fort Sill

20 Jun

Van Bueran’s Firebird

Sunday, May 26, 1968, 80 Days

Larger, Farrer, Rublay, Van Bueran and I were in a house, on the side of a mountain. I had all my valuables inside the house. Everything that I had accumulated, collected, produced or purchased over the course of my life and I was a 50 year old man. Then we went outside for a walk, since it was such a beautiful day. As we walked on a trail, among the fir trees, we got to a somewhat barren area, where you could see patches of black ground with smoke or steam rising from it. After watching in fascination, I realized that I was sinking into the ground, so I began to pull myself out, and move towards what I thought was solid ground.  Farrer started to move towards me, but he was getting too close, and I was afraid that we would get in each others way, so I told him to keep some distance, which he did. Then I felt guilty for doing this, as if I were rejecting him.

Suddenly I found myself back on flat ground, directly in front of the mountain. There were many people there, and we were watching as steam plumes were being spewed out of the mountain. Everyone knew that the mountain was going to erupt into a volcano, but we were too hypnotized by the raw power and beauty before us, to move. 

After all, where do you hide from an erupting volcano, when you’re right next to it?”  I thought.

Suddenly, I realized that I wanted to photograph the event, since I was there, but all of my camera equipment, along with my other possessions were still inside the house.  Suddenly I realized that the camera, along with everything else that was dear to me would be incinerated.

Then we all stood there with our eyes glued to the Eastern side of the mountain, watching for the eventual eruption. Finally it came, and the Southern side of the mountain, directly in front of us blew upward, and then Southward.  It completely missed us, but then ash started to fall on us, and while we stood there wondering how much would fall, I found myself back at the house on the Eastern side of the mountain. The house was crowded with people, but I ignored them and was looking through my photos trying to decide what, and how much I could carry out. 

Then one of the people said, you know, that first eruption could have just been a minor one, before the major one. This idea now became the main thing that I was now concerned with, which changed my attitude. Suddenly, I realized that Jim Black was there with all the other people. It looked like they were all in a cave, and I was standing at the entrance beckoning him to come out. However, he refused to come out and even openly showed his hostility to being forced to. This enraged me, since I was trying to save his life, so I gave him the finger and told him – “fuck you!”  Then I turned around and ran down the mountain as it erupted. The ground was opening up all around me and molten lava was flowing down, as the area that I was on began to swell, as if it were ready to explode.  I rose up in terror, as Ezekiel shook me awake.

“You must have been having a bad dream.”  Ezekiel said.

“It was so vivid.”  I said.

“The Lord speaks to us in dreams.”  Ezekiel said.

“If that was the Lord speaking to me, then he’s as confused as I am.” I thought, and said.  “It was weird.”

We went into the dining area and had a bowl of oatmeal and scrambled eggs with coffee for breakfast.  Then we got our gear loaded into the car and took off. We dropped $5.00 in the offering box in the back of the meeting hall before we took off, around 0630 hrs.

As we started out Larger, who had been silent since we picked up Ezekiel last night began to talk. “I heard that communes like this existed, but I never saw one before,” he said. “This is a real insight into the future of Christianity. It’s almost as if these people are saying that cows are communicating the secret of the universe to us, and the way that we can access it, is by eating mushrooms that grow on cow chips.”

“How can you come up with that conclusion?”  I asked.

“Cows were a sacred animal to the Ancient Egyptians, as they are to Hindus.” Larger answered. “There are those who think both the religions began as a result of that culture ingesting mind expanding drugs. The Hindu scriptures call theirs ‘soma’, but it’s shrouded in mystery today, since it’s been thousands of years since they used it.

“Then why can’t we just get this knowledge from eating hamburgers?”   Farrer asked. 

“Proof of that not working is in the fact that nobody does,”  Larger answered, and continued, “Certain plants also contain the secrets of the universe, which can be accessed just as we did at the Hopi village. The point is, just like the minister at the commune said, it gives you a taste of transcendence, to whet your appetite.” 

“As more people use mind expanding drugs, more of them experience that transcendence, and it’s terrifying to them. They truly experience awe inspiring transcendence through a chemical. The terror of that awe inspiring experience points them in the direction of the existing religions, since they are already systematized so as to be logically learned. Once leaders are established, then they can motivate followers without using drugs. They’ll have the nucleus who will maintain a certain level of enthusiasm for a period of time even after they quit using the psychedelics, but some may secretly still use the substances.”

After we got a couple of miles down Hwy 62, we pulled over and pried the side panel off to get some more weed to smoke on the trip back to Ft. Sill.  The Byrds were singing “Hey Mr. Tambourine Man” on Van Bueran’s 8 track as we fired up a joint. That stuff was really bomb. We were wasted again.

By the time that we got to Lubbock it was nearly 1000 hrs. and we were starving.  There was a drive in on the main drag that sold burger, fries, shakes and breakfast. After we ate and filled up with gas, we had pretty much an uneventful drive back to Ft. Sill, and ended up getting into a discussion about destiny.

“I think that everybody has a destiny, or a path to take in this life, but not everybody rises to the highest destiny that they have the potential for, because that takes work.  So as Jesus said, “many are called, but few are chosen.”  Larger said.

“Wait a minute.”  I said.  “I thought that you didn’t believe in Jesus?”

“I don’t believe in the actual historical existence of a Jesus Christ person, as written in the Bible.” He answered. “But I do believe that Jesus is an archetype, for that time and culture and that the idea must be interpreted and manifested in our time and culture. For our time and culture we have another archetype, or number of archetypes, but we must each find ours, and allow their power to be ours” 

“What kind of archetypes are you talking about?”  Farrer asked. 

“Archetypes to fulfill your destiny.” Hugeback answered. “Jesus was both the ‘prince of peace’ and the ‘warrior king,’ because he was the Messiah, and that was what the Messiah was supposed to be. In today’s world some of the archetypes would still be that of a ‘warrior,’ ‘man of peace,’ ‘saviour – in the form of a doctor’ ‘musical hearthrob’, ‘politician’, ‘mother & father’ ‘brother or sister’ and the list goes on and on.  Some can be temporary archetypes, such as that of a student, but they are all prototypes, or blueprints that give us something to shoot for.  It’s more a mindset than an actual physical appearance, although the mind will eventually control the external appearance.”

We got to Lawton around 1920 hrs. and stopped at the super market to get some baggies for the weed.  Then we pulled into the barracks, at around 1800 hrs. and checked into the orderly room. I got the keys to the mail room and got a letter from my folks, Linda and Taylor. Linda wants to come out next week to visit me, and asked me to call her. She included her phone number.

I called Linda, and she said that she was going to take a bus out to Lawton and find a cheap motel to stay at for a week. I told her that I just came back from leave, and could only swing a 3 day pass, maybe. She said that she didn’t care, and would at least see me at night. She was planning on arriving on Friday, June 14.

After we unpacked we headed back to town to McDonalds to get something to eat, since we missed chow. On the way there we toaked up another gold joint.  This is really some bomb shit.  Then we went to the Vaska theater in town, to see “In The Heat Of The Night” The movie was great and so were the seats in the theater. They were the rocking reclining type.

Afterwards we went to the Rendevous for a few beers, and they checked our ID’s for the first time. It seems that General Brown, the Post commander sent out an order, while we were gone, that all soldiers must be 21 to drink in any of the off base bars, except the 3.2 Go Go bars. That sucks, since there is nothing else to do, for the average GI, after hours, but to drink. It’s a soldier right to drink himself to death, if he’s a lifer.

We drank until around 2300 hrs. and then headed back to the barracks. When we got there, since it was dark, we pulled the door panels off, and split up the weed.  Since we didn’t have a scale, we had to do it by sight.  We spread out a table cloth that I got from the mess hall on the PT stand. It was a clear night that the moon and stars lit up everything well enough that our night vision did the rest. So we made four piles and tried to make them even.  Then we each filled 9 baggies with equal part of each of our piles.  That gave us 9 lids each.

“We need to hide it somewhere, where we can get at it, but at the same time, not where we can be associated with it.”  I told them.  “I’m going to hold out three lids to smoke, then I’m going to hide the rest. If you want I could hide everyone’s.”

“Where are you going to put it?”  Van Bueran asked.

“Under the barracks,” I said. “I found a spot one time when I had to crawl under it to put in some wiring.”

They all agreed to have me hide it under the barracks. So everyone put the lids that they wanted to store in a paper bag with a number on it, according to alphabetical order.  I was number “2″ since G is the second letter of our four names.  Farrer was “1″, Larger was “3″ and Van Bueran was “4.”  We put all the individual bags in a large shopping bag, and taped it shut. 

Then we walked back to the barracks. Farrer stood watch by the porch smoking a cigarette, while the others went to bed. Then I crawled under the barracks with a flash light and put the bag in an opening that went in about a foot, under the floor boards, near the center foundation support. I finally got to bed at around 2330 hrs.

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