I try to be one of the exceptional people who can live with the complexity of things, who are at peace with the unknown and the unknowable, who leave all the cages open. I tell myself: There’s so much that you don’t know, you can’t know, you aren’t ever going to know. I beg myself to stop forcing narratives. I remind myself, repeatedly, that real life doesn’t conform — or it does, bending perfectly to your idea of what is right and fair and good, leading you to believe (again) in a logic that will later unravel. 

Do you work, I tell myself. And after? Find a patch of lawn and sit down and hug your knees to your chest and let everything you’ve ever been told and everything you’ve ever seen mingle together in a show just for you, your own eye-popping poignant pageant of an existence, your own twelve-thousand-line epic poem. The tickle of the grass on your thighs, the sky moving over you, sunless or blue, echoes from a homily or a wedding toast or a letter your grandmother sent. Remember something good, a sunburn you liked the feeling of, a place you liked the feeling of, a place of homemade pasta. Do your work, Kelly. Then lean back. 

-Kelly Corrigan