Friday, August 20, 2021

All our issues are belong to us


19 August 2021

Another white man in another pick-up truck with another bomb (perhaps) throws dollar bills and coins out his window and live-streams demands. He wants Joe to call him. After it’s over, we’re told he has issues (mother died) and he wanted to speak to his wife. His son says they had no idea he was driving north to be a patriot. What happened to the Christmas Eve bomber who took out a block in Nashville? He, too, had problems. I dream I’m standing in a large meadow, surrounded by angry men (and some women). They’ve formed a circle around me; instead of singing campfire songs, they taunt me with their silences. If I had synesthesia, I’d say their auras were very dark. I want to tell them I am not origin but trigger, that I am someone they cannot know. They march forward to attach grievances to my clothes, except their post-it notes are permanent, like flags at cemeteries. I’m too confused to be angry, permit myself to be their white board (because, as one screams, I am white). So is she, but that hardly matters; judgment triggers dopamine as sure as a facebook like. The aftermath is ache, gateway drug to self-loathing. They nurse their anger like a baby’s skull, and like some skulls it breaks. It’s what you do with your trauma that matters. There was a blue design on a green dumpster I missed when I left my iPhone at home. But don’t throw it away. Sit at its charnel house and count your bones in prospect. The stink will fade. “Tragic optimism,” the article says, counter-acts “toxic positivity.” The Taliban fighters who whip women without burquas have their problems, too.

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