Do you ever wake up hating yourself? Not the self-pitying, I’m worthless kind of thing, that sad dope we sling to friends and family in search of sympathy and validation. There’s a place for that woe-is-me junk, I use it often, but that’s not what I’m talking about here.
Yesterday I wrote a post that was going to be this post. I worked on it off and on between baseball games, cleaning, and thoughts of abandoned love. You know, when folks don’t walk away from a relationship, they run like Carl Lewis straight to the Witness Protection Program. They leave behind a wounded bird. I’m veering into that woe-is-me territory rather quickly. Focus!
Anyway, yesterday I was going for a humorous post. I set it up with a pretty solid opening paragraph. It worked. Some dry humor, a dose of self-deprecation. There was potential there. Until I carpet-bombed everything with a ridiculously stupid scene. A stranger knocks on the door, I answer. We engage in a weird conversation. I really thought I nailed it at first. It read funny to me. I was like I am a WordPress God! I knew that digital pink carnations would be tossed at me like I was the lead singer of Winger. I would win back the girl, solve world poverty, and sail a yacht to Greece with Victor, my pet Red-Tailed Hawk. My post would win a Grammy. Maybe a Golden Globe. A Purple Heart.
Until I read it this morning with fresh eyes.
My goodness. It was an abomination. I literally cringed as I read it. Even my coffee cringed. It was a horror show of amateurish humor and juvenile writing. I deleted every word within minutes of waking up. And I wrote this version instead. Wait, what if this post is just as awful as the first attempt? Welp, back to thoughts of abandoned love…
Welcome to Sunday Prose 3. As always, I’ll provide links to three stories that I find to be outstanding and worthy of sharing. The first few weeks I’ll most likely link flash that I’ve shared on social media at some point in the past. But I’ve never posted them on the blog.
As Shakespeare once sang: “If my rhyme was a drug, I’d sell it by the gram. Keep my composure when it’s time to get loose. Magnetized by the mic while I kick my juice.”
We eat with our eyes. Fill your plate below.
Tiger Blood by Bud Smith (Hobart)
Give me weird flash with a heart all day long. Phenomenal writing.
What There Is To Be Done With This Silence by Janet Frishberg (WhiskeyPaper)
Loss and art are truly compatible. This one landed in my throat.
Life by Donald Ray Pollock (PEN America)
I’m cheating with Pollock, as he’s pretty well-known and I’m a huge fan of his style. This is just a taste of his genius, but his bleak world draws me in every time.