There is No Drug Whose Name is Not Pretend
by Andrea Rubin

Mustn’t reveal anxiety the kind like a fetid galaxy that is writhing like maggots the pointless kind you can’t reveal like a pit or pool of boiling and motion a slow motion sped up because if you reveal it, even the best people try to correct it which only makes it worse how they tell you things you already know or have heard about how “it will be all right” but those words those pale wet flaps of pasta and language have nothing to do with what you must sit and attend to while at the same time you must go boldly forward through your day. What you can’t say about a candle that has no wick, a flame without any candle aside from your own observation and your continuation and endurance you mustn’t say because the thing and the words that you or they might use as approach they are not cosmic enough for spinning and writhing as when you stub your toe the intensity and the event are out of sync the pain quite private though quite universal. Avoid all pronouns and corrections, reductions, adjustments when you are speaking simply walk around the perimeter in other words expatiate. Pretend you have never met anyone before and make us all anonymous; erase all of our edges slightly so we shimmer with our same basic outlines. There is no virtue and no honor for traversing miles of debris there is no drug whose name is not pretend.