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Questions freed from the confines of answers.

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It’s still all you, though. Don’t nobody have to kiss your ass for you to do what you need to do for you.

Even if it only starts out as Stay Busy. Stay Outta Bullshit. I may not have the same conception of freedom I thought I had. Doing what I wanted all day, as long as it included some looks over the shoulder. But I’ll be good. At least I got a job. I’m doing something.

I don’t wanna die looking stupid as hell.

The idealization isn’t crazy. It stands on its own, albeit quite far away. They had an identity. And they were proud of that identity.

But we have to see beyond the tunnel. Maybe even beyond the binary.

Claims of right and wrong shapeshifting with each change in perspective. Throughout settings. Between people. Within onseself.

Yes, that can lead to this: Fuck a problem. Slam. Fuck a solution. Slam. These mothafuckas trying to take my shit.

But it doesn’t matter how hard you go. Revenge isn’t anything.

Leave that boy alone.

No shots take down my ego.

You’ve got to make your own choices. We can try and help. After all, lotta people can’t stick with peace if they don’t have a stick to hold onto.

If violence is learned behavior, then other programs can be input too. Alternatives. Thought 2. Righteous can be taught. No shame in that. Only the delusion of time could make me think that my case is embarrassing.

Just because I haven’t been loved and try to tell myself that I don’t need to be doesn’t mean I don’t want to be—and it certainly doesn’t mean I don’t deserve it. You have to place a value and a vision on your life.

It’s about finding that soft spot. Not weak. But soft spot.

I can count on one hand how many times I told my mama I love her.

That point where she just can’t do it anymore. Where she can’t keep caring about them the way she wishes she could. Too close. Too much disappointment. They say that’s mean but it’s just how I feel.

I don’t know how I feel.

Confrontation, Realization, Acceptance, Atonement, Action, Consistency. Still…In reality, the face is there. The face is still there.

How to fathom when I don’t even remember my victims. Their faces register nothing in my past. But they’re here now. When you want to protect your kids, and you can’t in that moment… Turns out they were always there.

A son’s death caught on a cameraphone. A son’s death on YouTube. Thousands clicking “Favorite.” Zoom in. Zoom in. Put that nigga to sleep.

Smokescreens rarely obscure nothing though.

There was always something inside me that said I have to do better.

This one’s not about excuses. It’s not about abdicating responsibility. That’s not the problem this time.

I blame myself for a lot of stuff that I know it wasn’t my fault.

Thus, the flies.

You was bugging me until eventually I had to get up and tend to that fly.

But flies have struggles too.

As a mediator, sometimes I get to that point where I can’t keep catering to you. I still care, but I can’t keep being at the mercy of your convenience. Especially if you’re not even going to listen to me. I see you hearing, but you ain’t listening. At some point, I lose respect for myself. At some point, it has to be at my availability.

Now sitting here talking to you there was 15 times that I just wanted to get up and walk away from you. But I didn’t and I couldn’t.

And I really mean that. But I still have to keep calling. You have to pick up eventually. You just have to.

I don’t even know why I’m doing this. I must be a glutton for punishment.

Beauty in candor. Even the helpers need help. Even they suffer through specters and fight the sorrow of their own inefficacy, grasping desperately at their own justifications and reassurances constantly slipping and sliding through cracked fingers. And despite all the group meetings they might hold, all the speeches they give about solidarity and implicit support, all the community comfort they try to convey, they all still have to make their way back alone.

One day you might have all the strength you think you have. And you think: “You know what? I can continue on with my life.” But the next day your emotions are triggered by something; and it kind of puts them back to square one. So I don’t think people ever get over it.

They like being praised for their mind’s eye. They like seeing their praise infect other people.

I create for a living. I am a creator. This is my uniform. This is how I serve my country.

The writer’s obligation to realizing, understanding and making clear one’s allegiances, projecting these allegiances, attaining power through the display, asserting identity.

Don’t call it new theater. Call it real theater.

Big fat executives, with big fat smiles and big fat tantrums, cranked up on awareness about you, about them, about the industry, about the sales at the end of the rainbow.

Can you tell a sellable story?—with that Barton Fink feeling—by the end of the week—We’re all expecting great things. We should be kissing your feet. Naturally, we assume you know what you’re doing.

We all have stories.

Typewriter as monolith, imposing before, symbiotic during and humbled after. The permanently disappointed writer’s face. The untroubled productivity of secretaries manufacturing response letters.

The din of fans, running, going nowhere. Tilted halls shrinking into oblivion.

A day or a lifetime. Granted? Trapped?

A script written before the incident, yet still believed to be truth. A man who can write his masterpiece before the moment of his life. You think you know pain?

Empathy requires understanding, says she. The intellectual hears this but listens not. A paradox less in the conflict between knowledge and emotions and more in the artist’s insistence on interrupting the common man’s story with his exaltation of the subject’s status as the golden archetype. The gut tells him what’s good and what’s just adequate. Not the people. Stories drowned out by their legend. Common men blurred out by The Common Man.

The artist who bellows his mortality down the necks of perennially draining whiskey bottles and above the neck of a lover being perennially drained by her concern or the artist who bellows his eminence as savior of common men by talking over them and stifling their souls with his conclusions about who they are: both fight the raging river of manure, but who is not the parody?

I’ve always found that writing comes from a great inner pain. Maybe it’s a pain that comes from a realization that one must do something for one’s fellow man to help somehow to ease his suffering. Maybe it’s personal pain. At any rate, I don’t think good work is possible without it.

Watch the common men destroy themselves. What is to be thought of their lofty nobility now?

There are no answers or clear explanations—just the crashing of the waves.

Walk out into the fire, script in hand.

Yet…

We are not happy. We don’t put Wallace Beery in a fruity movie about suffering. Your beauty defense is hollow. Your universality defense is a joke. The galaxy is not Finkcentric.

Pity. Your folks are good people.

The force of change, the common man, advertised as king but made to keep quiet can be ignored only so long. He’s not as simple as you think. He knows your transgressions. You come into my home and complain I’m making too much noise. Not mad at anyone, he feels sorry for them. Just wants to help. I just wish someone would do as much for me.

A sequence with an assuredly symbolic climax, wherein the artist’s transmogrified reality serves as a vessel for conveying depth of understanding rooted in universal application but filtered through individual genius comprehension and reshaping. That is to say there is reason, to put it in your language. Right?

Or is the question not so much what’s in the box, or what’s the deal with the picture, but why does the seagull fall?

You’re just a tourist with a typewriter.