cool kills vulnerability. cool kills authenticity. to those that get it, cool is a cancer.

rip Cool, 1942-2018. I’m done with you.

you intimidate my heart and laugh at my faltering attempts to create anything outside of the expected.

you criticize anything out of the norm, but race to adopt whatever new mania everyone else has already concluded to be acceptable.

you don’t think for yourself. chasing you results in groupthink, pretending to care, over-expressing faux emotions, and using too many exclamation points as compensation for an ever-more-vapid soul.

I was liberated by realizing any expression of pure emotion is “inherently pathetic” to you. “too much”?

I am not too much.

for pity’s sake, how is anything new going to be created if the feebly-outstretched hand of creativity is laughed back into a corner because it’s Not Cool Enough Yet?

better – “People Who Matter Haven’t Concluded It’s Cool Enough Yet.” because Cool has, in fact, nothing to do with the objective quality or heart invested in the Work. The verdict of Cool is given by baboon-necked masses, slouched over their phones, all following the same meme accounts and all magically concluding the same opinion of what is and isn’t It.

I will never make you happy. I will always be simultaneously Not Enough and Too Much.

I am happy, so happy, to be rid of your voice in my head. Honesty begets real art. Authenticity begets honesty. And authenticity only steps out of its safe retreat when it knows it won’t be roundly abused in doing so.

THYROGLOBULIN, QUANTITATIVE, SERUM

She told me what I hoped to hear –

that I’m healthy and recovered and doing well.

But I realized

I always have been, as much as I am now. I don’t 

know if I have something else going on – hemoglobin will paint another corner of the picture –

but in this uncertainty I am as certain as every person alive 

that I’m dying

slower or faster or more consciously than some, I do not know.

This consciousness of mortality leads to gratitude for joy, gratitude for laughter, gratitude for all of it

And I’m grateful for this reality occurring on a non-terminally ill body. 

I didn’t realize a side effect of having cancer would be loose-leaf gratitude

steeping in my soul,

pouring out from every pore.

Fear

My grandma told me a story about her neighbor’s dog. Terrified of the world, she was too scared to go outside. A professional dog trainer was hired to help the pup overcome her fear. He said, “Take her out while she’s still shaking, gently drag her along with the leash, and give her rest every few feet. Above anything else, don’t let her go an inch backward. Only forward. Soon she’ll be running and playing on the leash like a whole new puppy.”

Metaphors, metaphors.

Only forward.