Its.
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Sit down.

I would like to speak.

What is art?

Stare it in the face.

See its cyclopean eyes look back

Infinite and brutal,

Terrifyingly intimate.

Reach out,

Hands uneven,

Body shaking,

And take it in your grasp.

Shock.

When I was twelve I wrote my first piece of writing longer than a school essay in a marbled notebook. It was fan fiction. It was ten pages of hastily scrawled fiction that couldn’t see the light of day. It was Star Wars. I threw it out. I’ve never made that mistake again. Backups, printouts, laminate.

Heartbeat.

I see it sometimes

Looming over me

Larger than life

Face alight with joy

As it sees me

Ant-like, tiny,

In the life it has met out for me.

Shock.

I drowned my sorrows in the bottom of a bottle. I saw life as nothing but a trip towards doom, and I thought I could leave a mark on a large Internet community. I took rips every day and gassed myself up in as many ways as I could. I lied to myself. I posted. I found out my deafening mediocrity. Months later, I quit the bottle. I never stopped writing.

Heartbeat.

I can stare myself

In the drawn and haggard state

I was when that beast

Put its misbegotten finger

Inside my heart.

Only then did I learn

What I was meant to be.

Shock.

I placed the blade of the knife against pale and ordinary skin. I’m covered with freckles and my mind races at what could happen, at extracting what beats below. I looked around my room, at the symbols of my own mediocrity. What caught my eye? The painting made by my childhood neighbor. I remember my mother told me he died of throat cancer. What really happened? He shot himself in the throat. This is what he left. I start to cry. I put the knife down.

Heartbeat.

What is art?

It is many things

It is stygian blue waves

Lashing at my very core.

Snapdragons lilting

In the too-hot summer breeze.

Aztec gods

With wiry necks and feather-light fingers

Ripping me apart.

A train bearing down

Tracks in a wavering Nebraska cornfield

In the blistering heat of the 1980’s.

I found these things

In the pits of my life.

Deep, dark, dynasties of depression

Exploding inside my mind.

Sustaining me.

I feel them in my footsteps

The weight bearing down on me

Easier, lighter.

I look down at my calloused hands

That have held those I love

Those I hate

And know exactly what they should be used for.

Shock.

Sometimes I cry. I do it more often now, great gouts of tears falling down cheeks stained by cement dust and pockmarked with acne I cannot solve. I let my emotions out in waves, letting them slither across my heart and clutch it when they need be. But I do not cry all the time. Only when I find something worthy. Like this.

Heartbeats.

I sit down

At a glowing screen

Filtering out

The blue and wasted waves.

I settle fingers on the keyboard,

And it settles with me

Tracing my existence.

No longer haunting.

No longer tragic.

A whole.

A gripping tragedy

A disgusting exultation.

A marvelous description.

I feel it settle

On my back

Embracing me

With photometric legs

And crystalline eyes

Reflecting back

What I do

With its hands.

Shock.

Heartbeats.

Shock.

Heartbeats.

That is art

My muse

My beast

My parasite

My love

Forever and ever.

To everyone who bought me here, and put their hands on mine at the keyboard, you've made me weep happy tears which has become quite easy to do. Thank you.

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