You sit down with a glass of wine, red, nameless, indistinct. You twirl it in your grasp, yearning for the taste, wanting to get fucked up, scared of what might happen. You stare at the glass, your reflection, you. You sit, try not to think, and think. You think of marriage and kids and plastering and pain. You think of the future, and you drink. You know, honestly, that you’re not good enough. You know that all the words you write are worthless. There is a reason no one reads your work. There is a reason you have a job, in an office, at a desk, your manager, a mouse. Meetings and minutes and mornings consumed by something far beyond sadness, sorrow coursing through your veins, eternal sleep the strongest seed within. You think about the stories and settings and characters and chaos. You think about the people on paper who will never matter. Instantly you have an idea, and let it go. You light a cigarette and look up at the sky, darkness comforting your skin, a dog barking in the distance, alone. It’s your birthday tomorrow, tonight, now, and you have nothing to celebrate. Another year has passed, like those before, barren. Publication remains a puzzle, pieces missing, permanently. Agents and editors decide without you, your details shredded and disposed, nothing but dust, again. You wonder if a gun would make a difference. Would you pull the trigger. Would you watch your shadow fall away in the dirty glass of some shapeless mirror. You wonder how your flesh would feel, serrated and torn, trembling. The rejections make you sick, the damage no longer critical. One day someone will discover you, and look away, disgusted. Perhaps your child may read your words, intrigued, confused, lost. You think of a word; defeat, and let it linger. Your glass is almost empty. Ash has stained your trousers. This is what you are. Washed up. Withered away. Wrinkled. You feel something, sometimes. There is silence. The dog is dead. The night is numb. Water drips, the moment disturbed, gone. You think about your story, the life that beats beneath, bruised. You ponder on its purpose. You wait for answers, tense and tired. Why do you do it. Why do you bother. If you stopped, would anyone notice. Would anyone care. Would you. Is it worth it. Really. Truly. Worth it. A crooked nail scratches at your skin. There is something wrong with you. Something you cannot explain. Something strange and disconcerting. Something colossal. It is stubborn, insane and foolish. You can feel it. Deep inside, beneath your bones, burning. There is no escape. Ever. And you know this. It is the only thing you know. One thing, two things, all things. All the time. Everywhere. No words can describe it, but they will, eventually.