I must say a word about fear. It is life’s only true opponent. Only fear can defeat life. It is a clever, treacherous adversary…It begins in your mind, always … so you must fight hard to express it. You must fight hard to shine the light of words upon it. Because if you don’t, if your fear becomes a wordless darkness that you avoid, perhaps even manage to forget, you open yourself to further attacks of fear because you never truly fought the opponent who defeated you.
Mark Rothko, Blue and Grey, 1962, oil on canvas
“I’m not an abstractionist… I’m not interested in relationships of color or forms… I’m interested only in expressing basic human emotions—tragedy, ecstasy, doom and so on… The people who weep before my pictures are having the same religious experience I had when I painted them.”—Mark Rothko, 1956
Lately, I’ve been thinking about who I want to love, and how I want to love, and why I want to love the way I want to love, and what I need to learn to love that way, and who I need to become to become the kind of love I want to be… and when I break it all down, when I whittle it into a single breath, it essentially comes out like this: Before I die, I want to be somebody’s favorite hiding place, the place they can put everything they know they need to survive, every secret, every solitude, every nervous prayer, and be absolutely certain I will keep it safe. I will keep it safe.
These are the first publicly available photographs of newborn giant panda triplets born to giant panda Juxiao inside an incubator at the Chimelong Safari Park in Guangzhou, Guangdong province, China. According to local media, this is the fourth set of giant panda triplets born with the help of artificial insemination procedures in China, and the birth is seen as a miracle due to the low reproduction rate of giant pandas.
Highly sensitive people are too often perceived as weaklings or damaged goods. To feel intensely is not a symptom of weakness, it is the trademark of the truly alive and compassionate. It is not the empath who is broken, it is society that has become dysfunctional and emotionally disabled. There is no shame in expressing your authentic feelings. Those who are at times described as being a ‘hot mess’ or having ‘too many issues’ are the very fabric of what keeps the dream alive for a more caring, humane world.
Side doorway of el-Khazne, Petra
You go away, and I seem not to exist for you. I don’t understand. I don’t know what you want, or what I am! You write to me like a lover, you treat me like a casual acquaintance! Casual acquaintance, no; but a friend, yes. I’ve always told you I foresaw that solution, and accepted it in advance. But a certain consistence of affection is a fundamental part of friendship. One must know what to hold on to. And just as I think we have reached that stage, you revert abruptly to the other relation, and assume that I have noticed no change in you, and that I have not suffered or wondered at it, but have carried on my life in serene insensibility until you chose to enter again suddenly into it. I have borne all these inconsistencies and incoherences as long as I could, because I love you so much, and because I am so sorry for things in your life that are difficult and wearing—but I have never been capricious or exacting, I have never, I think, added to those difficulties, but have tried to lighten them for you by a frank and faithful friendship. Only now a sense of my worth, and a sense also that I can bear no more, makes me write this to you.
The important thing is that you all keep searching for your own answers. I’ll tell you one thing about the universe, though. The universe is a pretty big place. It’s bigger than anything anyone has ever dreamed of before. So if it’s just us… seems like an awful waste of space. Right?
I don’t want to stand before you
like a thing, shrewd, secretive.
I want my own will, and I want
simply to be with my will,
as it goes toward action.
And in the silent, sometimes hardly moving times,
when something is coming near,
I want to be with those who know
secret things or else alone.
I want to unfold.
I don’t want to be folded anywhere,
because where I am folded,
there I am a lie.
Lauren Bacall - 1924-2014
Just because you fell in love with the river
doesn’t mean you must feed it your bones.