Carla told me to infiltrate.
To ignore all the precautions,
And breach my resistance under a full moon.
After all, she said, your sadness isn’t a disguise.
Your gloom is genuine, although prefabricated,
Surely you see the blueprint.
You have planned your demise since childhood,
Carefully constructing a fortress of self-abuse,
You don’t self-medicate, she said, you obliterate,
And then you wear your inadequacy like a crown,
As if to say no one feels pain like me.
This blow of sorrow, your prevailing wind,
The smell of burnt hair follows you, your melancholy assaults.
God, I can sense your anxiety blocks away, Carla told me,
Even if I’m baking chicken *** pie
And drinking breakfast tequila,
There is always this gust of despair.
And your current ability to fester a modest nausea,
In everyone, everywhere you go,
It only convinces, even your intimates,
That you have begun an irreversible decay.
Jesus, either you act now or you will disappear, Carla said.
You have one option, Carla told me,
Confront yourself and
Think about death honestly every day.
It is the only way for a depressive,
A man in a life jacket, she said
Comfort yourself early, before dawn,
Curl up with your litter of pillows
And in that storm, that tornado you pretend is a bed,
Lie still, stare at the cracks in your ceiling
And search for spiders, Carla told me.
Wait until the disappointment of waking up alive again, subsides,
And while the sounds of the toilet you left running all night,
Convince you of the futility of self-improvement,
In this hollow moment,
Allow yourself to passively, selfishly, contemplate death.
Do not conjure up the act of dying, Carla said,
It is deviant and corrupt and insincere to rehearse your final moments,
And as you know, she continued,
I have no inherent objections to suicide.
After all war is mass suicide
And where would we be without violence,
Jesus, nothing would ever get done, so no, she said,
This is not that at all.
And God knows with your ego,
If I tell you to think about death,
You will descend into hero worship, she said,
Or worse, martyrdom and quest,
No, Carla said, imagine what death is like,
Think scientifically about what it means to be dead.
I will never get out of bed, I replied,
If I’m encouraged to wallow.
If I roll over before I wash my arms and feed my birds,
I may recoil forever.
You know I have an addiction to thought, I reminded her,
An adhesive meme,
(Why did that woman throw her cat in the garbage can),
Will arrest and detain me for an entire day.
It’s worth it, Carla said,
I want you to understand the carefulness of death,
The miracle of pain in absence,
The cessation of doubt,
The sudden end of futility and horror,
And I want it to absorb you, all of you,
Until you become reassured of its tenderness,
The fairness and equality that ends all things.
There is no need to frustrate,
To pray for significance, Carla advised me,
Free yourself from heroism and
Your self-destructive pattern of wishful thinking.
As it is, the number of women you sleep with and discard
Should be punishable by jail time,
When will you learn that fulfillment will never be a number.
And your attempt to write a novel,
Is tiresome, the delusion insulting,
The pretense unforgivable.
And the lies you tell,
The anger you express,
Mostly from a stool,
Undermines everything you claim to be.
You have a mirror,
Probably one that hasn’t been cleaned in a century
So use it,
Study the creases in your face,
Your boxer’s bruised eyes,
Jesus, why do you always look like you’ve just lost a fistfight.
I stared at Carla, my cup of coffee warm between two hands.
Ok I get the death is my reward thing, sort of, I said
But how do I salvage any joy at this point,
Is my life, my whole ******* life, going to be a stockpile of misery.
Christ, you are a perpetual novice, Carla said,
And I have the feeling you are about to drool,
Death isn’t our reward,
But to those who corner it,
A well worthwhile prize.
I don’t want you be puzzled by outcomes anymore, Carla said,
Do they like me, do they hate me, do they even know I exist,
You must stop chasing and being overwhelmed,
Be consumed, be rebirthed by the attractiveness of irrelevance,
Empower yourself with insignificance,
Forgo your Causa sui willingly,
Surrender your need for meaning, purpose and story
And go sit on a bench for a year, nothing more.
You must allow the softness of death to befriend you, Carla said
And when you do,
You will stop being impulsively afraid of everything,
Perish your self-serving search for an absolute truth,
Accept your limits without choking on your limitations,
And your confusion will degrade, she advised.
Carla frowned and turned away from me.
Usually a crow flies by when we part.
If you **** yourself, I want to be there, she said.
She undid the top button of her coat,
Took off the necklace with the crucifix and the picture of John Lennon,
Threw it into the East river,
And squeezed my hand as brief and sudden as a ghost.
Read Ernest Becker. Trump is using our fear of death to manipulate everyday. Resist in any way you can. Donate, even ten dollars to the ACLU. A crazy person has the nuclear codes. This is life and death and one way to deal is to become less afraid-- of everything imho.