Unfinished Prose, Edition 01 / by Rebecca Tillett

Fear will drown you. Fear is the car you're locked inside of as it hurdles down toward the riverbed floor. Fear is a three-letter word written by our ancestors to justify humanity's existence and each other's condemnation of the differences among us. Fear is only as powerful as you allow it to be. Fear thrives in the dark, in the absence of love and light. Love yourself, love others and be fucking brave. No matter what.

Cobain and Staley and Weiland and Cornell. The pained wails of our generation haunt us from wooden boxes because they couldn't linger, and yet the discarded reverberations do. Such cruel parting gifts, don't you think? Are all the heroes dead? Or just ours? Will the melodies ever sound the same, as somber and fixed in time as they are now? Will they stay? Because your voice, when you're playing Nutshell and humming Layne's voice on my parlor guitar, and I'm reminiscing over dreams I stopped having years ago; your voice and your fingers and everything else that I love. They stay in that way; reincarnated. I miss the dreams and am in love with the cause; a quandary, because I see things in dreams. Now I just feel like life stops when I sleep. Like death. In backness and nihility. But I still haven't found our heroes there. Fuck me slow while the sirens sing in the background of this cursory concrete city, and the people waiting to die around us slowly plead for mercy to uninterested ears. The flashing emergency lights sometimes yank me from the blackness, from the nothingness, like being reborn, reluctantly. Living is always better than dying. Always. I think that's the tagline, anyway. Quantity cover quality for the masses. So American. So tragic. But no, god no, even nothingness is better than this. Maybe they always knew. We'll say our goodbyes and retreat into our own valediction before they can save us, baby, just like our wasted heroes. Until then, the way you push your whole self into me, the way you knead my back with the warm palms of your hands, the way you squeeze my thighs and wrap your legs in mine. The way the light from the tv ricochets off the skin of your eyes and into the lingering summer air; my refuge from the sirens, from the emergency lights, from the relentless street lamps crucifying the dark they won't let us have. And your voice when you say baby, your voice when I hear you singing quietly to yourself, your voice when the first leaf falls off the tree of our balcony curtain. It lingers.