Los Angeles—a sunlit mortuary where your soul will rot and you won’t feel it.
in winter, under their overcast sky.
This dark green of Douglas firs and the lighter
green of rhododendrons means all is not lost.
And yet when the journey to work begins
in darkness and the trip back also; and when
all day a lid clamps the city in, blocking
both mountains and ocean so the only way
to light is up; and water, not sun, puts
a sheen on things; I can understand why,
the first time you landed here, you began
to not understand me. How, you must
have wondered, could roots grow under such
paltry light and not be washed away?
— Stephanie Bolster
You don’t know anyone at the party, so you don’t want to go. You don’t like cottage cheese, so you haven’t eaten it in years. This is your choice, of course, but don’t kid yourself: it’s also the flinch.
Your personality is not set in stone. You may think a morning coffee is the most enjoyable thing in the world, but it’s really just a habit. Thirty days without it, and you would be fine. You think you have a soul mate, but in fact you could have had any number of spouses. You would have evolved differently, but been just as happy.
You can change what you want about yourself at any time. You see yourself as someone who can’t write or play an instrument, who gives in to temptation or makes bad decisions, but that’s really not you. It’s not ingrained. It’s not your personality. Your personality is something else, something deeper than just preferences, and these details on the surface, you can change anytime you like.
If it is useful to do so, you must abandon your identity and start again. Sometimes, it’s the only way.
Set fire to your old self. It’s not needed here. It’s too busy shopping, gossiping about others, and watching days go by and asking why you haven’t gotten as far as you’d like. This old self will die and be forgotten by all but family, and replaced by someone who makes a difference.
Your new self is not like that. Your new self is the Great Chicago Fire—overwhelming, overpowering, and destroying everything that isn’t necessary.
This is perhaps the best way to sum up what I want to change about next year.
Screw poetry, it’s you I want, your taste, rain on you, mouth on your skin.
— Margaret Atwood (via caughtbythewindow)
The people who fight and lobby and legislate to make guns regularly available are complicit in the murder of those children…