Authenticity

Words have always been my defense mechanism. If I could write it in a story or a poem or a journal entry, maybe it wouldn’t hurt so much. If I could write it, it would just be words on a page and I could find distance.

But that sort of writing is not good. Being an artist is about being authentic. My emotions and experiences are not pretty encased artifacts to be admired under flattering light. I should not feel that the things I write about were a dream that happened to someone else which I am now describing from a distance.

I’m not talking about cultural authenticity here; I’m not going to steal something from someone else just because I think it feels more real to me than my own life. That too is a way of lying to oneself. And I know exactly where I came from, the good and the bad. I don’t need to find myself a heritage. I already have that.

The authenticity I need is located within myself, or else it doesn’t exist at all. It’s honesty. When did I cross the line between lying to other people and lying to myself? I can’t remember anymore. The lying, like the words, was a defense mechanism.

Lowering my defenses in a world that has never been kind is an insane thing to do. But then, they do say writers are all insane (even the bad ones).

I’m tired of writing in a medium that provides distance. Paper, which used to be a living, vital tree which grew seeds every year, smashed up into pulp and pressed together into lined notebooks, a self alienated from itself, no longer living. And ink, what even is ink? What do they make it from? I know less about where ink comes from than I know about where the parts of my laptop and the electricity to power it comes from.

So fuck all that alienation, an alienated person writing dead words using things which were once other, more alive things. I want to split my torso open, crack my ribs, haul out my guts, and write in blood and shit.

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