Category Archives: Fiction

“I want a brighter word than bright.” -John Keats

I am imperfect and so are all of you. There is beauty and frailty in that. I feel beautiful and frail tonight. I have for several days now. I want a brighter word than bright, but I can also relate to how Keats felt here:

“I am in that temper that if I were under water I would scarcely kick to come to the top.”
― John Keats

I feel wonderfully stable in my personal life, yet my blogging life is giving me quite a bit of woe. This is the first time that is the case. This is me kicking to the top as best I can.

I have made mistakes. I have witnessed mistakes. There has been a lot of talk (read: disagreement) about what those mistakes are. Everyone has a piece to say and everyone feels they are right. There is listening and hearing and ignoring and criticizing and dehumanizing and pontificating and thoughtfulness and respect and anger and frustration. There is all of that and more, often studded with orange stars.

I believe in peace, compassion, understanding, and empathy. I know that my fellow bloggers do as well. So how can it be that we are all so sideways? We are imperfect, but that is no excuse. There are only a couple of people whose heads have remained completely cool. Other than those few, are we all just giving lip service to these ideals? Do we abandon them when push comes to shove?

No, it isn’t that simple. Still, there is a small fact that has been burrowing through my brain like a cancerous tapeworm. I do my best to be compassionate and empathetic in my blogs. I don’t always do this well, but I try. As a result, I don’t get controversial often. The one time I post something knowing it would incite controversy (but still believing it the right thing to do), my stats exploded. It was one of my highest comment days ever and broke my page view record.

Compassion and empathy are what I believe will make the world better, but they are all but ignored when standing beside controversy. This makes me sadder than I can possibly state.

There is but one small seed of hope. The page view record set by controversy was surpassed by something better, communion. Alan Rickman died and my post with Dumbledore’s quote about death was suddenly in demand. This wasn’t about me or my post, it was about people grieving a life well-lived and remembering a time when they read something that touched their humanity.

I watched the page views soar hopefully. I wanted so much for communion to beat controversy, even in this smallest microcosm. It did and I felt better.

The disagreements have continued and my reservoir of compassion and understanding is nearing empty. I know I do not understand you all perfectly. I know that we do not agree on all things. I don’t want that. I want honesty. I want recognition of truth and I am willing to fight for it. Compassion and empathy are necessary, but so are grit and passion.

I spent too much of my life smiling and saying things I did not mean for the benefit of others. Those habits are still with me, but I am breaking them down a little more each day. This week has not changed me, but it has shown me where my line lies. I champion peace and understanding, but not at the expense of truth.

There can be no peace or understanding where truth is forfeit. My mind is open to the fact that what I think of as truth is not always so, but I will drown if I sacrifice honesty for peace. I want a brighter word than bright, but also a brighter world, so you can find me kicking towards the sun.