You gain nothing by being the best person you can ever imagine. Because you aren’t imaginary.
Have you ever felt baptized by the rain?
Wildfires trap 4,000 residents, new year’s eve attacks are stopped, militia faces true disaster and I walk through the rainy grey snow.
I watch the traffic do whatever it wants.
Dirty sewage waste, piles of breath, fog, air density, blood particles racing, this is New Year’s eve and the lean is dirtier than the metal we were promised.
I wish there was trivia abandoned by the gods buried and available but there isn’t.
Whenever I feel damaged by Truth, I go to the gym.
Weight loss feels stupid in the morning when the headline about nazi salutes remind me that we are in fact in danger of being too small.
A sagging woman performs jumping jacks, a geriatric takes his time at the water fountain, tanned conformists high five and I sit on my bike, watching headlines.
There should be laws against torture and grief and goals but all we have is News.
We are addicted to telling stories about ourselves, most of which now include other people who we don’t know and have never seen.
All of these gym junkies come here in the spirit of improvement. I come for the behavioural inquiry and because earlier today I wondered about my worthlessness.
I watch my dog lick his feet.
Did you forget to fill the bowl with water after you dropped it on the ground, maybe he isn’t licking his feet maybe it’s the water maybe its the ends of things. If he had to fight a war over water, I know he would win. I feel easier.
I lie on the floor and realize that I haven’t been good.
I have hurt people. Not criminally Just here and there.
I watch every thought of every person I have ever hurt.
I don’t think I am good.
Maybe I am ok for at least feeling and knowing that I have hurt these people or at least my memories of them but my jaw is tight at the invention of that excuse.
No matter how many beautiful things you provide for the world you cannot escape the fact that some people hate you for a thing you did one time.
My biggest regret still looms.
Just ahead of me, a few inches from my face is the exhaust and breath of memory.
This one feels criminal.
I weep and I don’t know and I don’t know if it even matters you can’t know if it even matters.
Someone rang my doorbell at 1139 last night and I understand that this is unlikely but I think it might have been him since that’s the kind of enticement he used to provide, wet faced and brimming with the capacity for transcendence but the dirt on my floor and the dog hair in my carpet can’t let go: I am not a good person.
You won’t be a better person for trying harder in 2020.
But don’t worry, we aren’t better than you.
We aren’t even better than we were ten years ago.
We aren’t worse either.
All we are is a series of changing truths.
Now get used to the idea that the truths you know aren’t real.
Your memory is biased.
You can’t be the judge of your own past, it’s futile to try, get on the ground and watch your thoughts and let them float away.
Write your truths, the things you think are true, write them down and read them and accept that they aren’t facts, they are just beleifs.
Here is my top belief: I am worthless.
It’s not a truth.
To conquer my sense of worthlessness, I don’t have create goals that might make me better than I am, I just have to abolish the belief that I am worthless.
Do you know that I have never made money from writing?
That’s because I believe that my work is worthless.
Changing my beliefs, I realize I could be self publishing my books.
The elitist notion that self-publishing de-values the written word is just a false belief that I have bought into.
I should be charging people to read my work because my work is valuable.
I don’t have exorbitant financial ambitions I just want to believe that I am writing work that people would pay money to experience.
I need to believe that I have valuable. Otherwise, why am I spending my life doing this?
Last night I was sent a link to Toronto’s top theatre artists, a list published by Now Magazine that is extremely meaningless but the site of this list confirmed for me that I will never be valued by the theatre community.
I work hard to write plays that will change people.
My plays are the product of years and years of experiential writing and research.
I have never received money to write them and when I do receive grants I often give the money to collaborators or development resources. Why?
Because I don’t believe that I am worth anything.
I could diligently work harder and vow to network or apply to more grants or submit my writing everywhere but my attitude will remain and the pain of relating to my work in anger will be the same.
I am worth your money.
I write with a capacity for authentic empathy that most people deny even exists.
I will not fade and neither should you.
Please, please, man in Woodbridge don’t explode those devices we found in your home, what were you thinking, what are you thinking, what is anyone thinking when they enter a home and violate or terminate the people who live there. I am uncomfortable watching the world turn to sewage.
I am washing.
I am just.
I am valuable.
And if you don’t think your value is true, do it: write all the things you believe to be true about yourself. Write them and read them and change them.
Happy New Year.