Open Letter to Marc Maron (Day 14)

Maybe tomorrow I’ll write a list of what I need to let go of… maybe… cause who doesn’t love a letter that suddenly turns into a listicle?

Clearly what I’ve let go of is the need to write this letter. Okay, that’s not true. (Not much difference between a poet and a liar, I’m afraid.) I’ve been on vacation, too busy eagerly awaiting turn-down service to write. And spending time having these conversations out loud with actual human beings and not via a keyboard. I saw a play on Wednesday—Every Brilliant Thing—a one-man show about a son dealing with his mother’s suicidal depression and then his own collateral-damage depression. The drumbeat throughout the show was a list of brilliant things—things both ephemeral and physical that filled him with wonder and reminded him that life was worth living. I think that’s why I’m such a magpie—at home, in my cubicle at work. I need to inhabit a life-sized cabinet of wonder and curiosities that I can hang onto when I find myself listing toward despair. Despair that the narratives I tell myself refuse to tie-up neatly with a curlicued “The End.” Or perhaps, it’s less about tying up a single narrative and more about remembering that there are other narratives, not just the one my parents wrote into me. In the show, our loveable British hero (who had several of us close to tears including one young woman who was sobbing as we all filed out of the theater) penned his list up to 1,000,000. I can offer you this by no means definitive and only-a-starting-place list of 20:

Every Brilliant Thing

1. My sister’s smile

2. Photographs of my sister as a child

3. Virginia’s Woolf

4. the sound of rain late at night and in the early morning

5. the silence when you wake up before dawn and no one else is awake yet and it feels like the whole word belongs to you

6. laughter

7. French vanilla ice cream

8. that scene in Inspector Lewis “A Life Born of Fire” when Sargent Hathaway first kisses Zoe Kenneth

9. “Feel Like Making Love” by Bad Company

10. Maxim Vengerov’s interpretation of the cadenza in Tchiakovy’s Violin Concerto in D

11. when you make yourself giggle writing a status update on Facebook

12. the look on my brother Raul’s face when I make him laugh

13. how soft and drapy my favorite gray blanket is

14. that deep blue the sky goes at night right before it turns black

15. seeing the constellation Orion overhead

16. when the moon is still risen in the day time

17, Fage Greek yogurt

18. people who hold on to you with their entire bodies when they give you a hug

19. replicas of the Eiffel Tower

20. Michael Fassbender’s toothy smile

I should add that one of my brilliant things is making lists. But that one’s fairly obvious, isn’t it. As is, perhaps, that my heart isn’t quite in this right now. But you have to push through. We’re all phoenixing through our lives more times than we want to admit.

Posted on January 23, 2015, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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