Why Write?

By the time we get to a particular age, we become more mechanical, slip into autopilot, accept our perceptions, certain life doesn’t have anything new to offer. I’ve been told it’s the writer’s job, through a process of defamiliarisation, to refresh the psychological life of people, who we can also refer to as readers. This is assuming I have readers.

I’m not sure this is what they want though. If a reader is not thinking, if they are immersed in their own confusion, then chances are they will be looking for a “solution” that will promise to reflect back to them their own world view, which is usually what confuses them in the first place. Our experience of life accumulates and we feel somehow we’ve earned it. I’m not actually sure what it is, but we expect it to pay in dividends.

I was set for great things, at least that’s what I told myself. I thought pain in life was the exception not the rule, and it was not yet a distraction, this hope I sunk into, telling myself things would get better. I thought it would be like that forever. In my own mantric ways, I thought, hoped hope would last. These days, my joints are stiff, and I expect it to get worse from here on out. I interpret the tenderness in my upper back to mean I have been hard on myself, likewise the strain in my neck suggests I’ve been negligent.

My audience does not yet exist. I will speak until they come, speak until they hear what it is I have to say. Clear your mind of expectations. That’s what I hear could be done, but expectations will be more or less specific. There is no innocent carrot. Just as there is no banana, just a picture of a banana.

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