A Naked Truth

To fight for words
To stumble and lose
In my twisted tongue
Fragile words, and few.

Monday did not let me lose face when it let me pass through the day unscathed and unharmed. I scrambled for words at the back of my tongue, hoping to find a perfect kind of articulation for two class reports that was due that day. And I did find words, but only remnants from this self-made word wars in my head. And before my eyes I saw shards of glass, scraps of metal, bloodstains, bleeding.

Monday went as it arrived — completely forgettable, faceless, bland.
But Tuesday was a betrayer of trust.

I thought about leaving my paper empty as I stared paralyzed and defenseless at the sudden onslaught of questions. I thought about submitting a blank sheet before my professor, prepared with a perfectly resolute argument in my head as to why I refuse to translate Nietzsche into words, into anything close to intelligible, into any thing at all. It was not arrogance but rather something that persists at the opposite pole: repentance, or perhaps, self-reproach. I never understood him. He never wanted to be understood. I clenched my pen with my outraged fingers and hoped instead to write about the source of my irrational madness and my fuming rejection to answer the midterm exam. For a minute or two, I felt my professor’s eyes on me, and how his gaze made me hide in humiliation. There was no one but Nietzsche. My shame stripped me off of my defenses, of my excuses. My guilt, a screaming sea. For the first time ever I felt numb and naked like a newborn cursed with the consciousness of the world. With Nietzsche I felt bare-skinned, unconcealed, and raw. With Nietzsche I felt no need for words.

I don’t want to write. I never want to write again.

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