I wanted to tell you something

I wanted to tell you something in order toexplain the way I feel about the Universe,its workings, etc. But I couldn’t yesterday—I’m sorry—I wanted only to ballmyself up and cry all day. It was the sixteenthday in a row this happened to me, and to be

more than two weeks waiting to cry is,especially when, the whole time, I wasn’t able to,absolutely horrible. It was no sweet sixteen,I’ll tell you that much. Unless at yours, the Universekept telling you to quit having such a balland that you should have died, like, yesterday.

At first, it feels like you’re winning—that yesterdayyou really were meant to die, but since you still are,you beat the system somehow. But the Universe bawls,“No, I meant you should’ve crawled intoa hole and fucking died!" And then the Universepunches you right in the gut, something like sixteen

times, and all you can think is, “Some sixteenthbirthday! Maybe I will go die in a hole." Yesterday,at times like this, is a luxury the cruel Universerefuses to give you. This is when it’s a pain just to be,when that Marvell line about “rolling our stuff into one balljust seems glib, when you don’t want one body, let alone two.

Something else that may come as a surprise toyou: over the past more-than-a-fortnight, these sixteendays, I’ve had nothing to eat but crackers and a cheese ball.(That’s not entirely true—yesterdayI had some candy, peppermints and Jujubes.)Maybe this is why I’m so mad at the Universe—

because all it has ever wanted, this Universethat gave me life, fed me from its breast til I was two,and even before that, made a place in which I could be—all it’s wanted was for me to take the sixteensteps to sobriety, fold the Eight-Fold Path over yesterdayand step around it lightly, as I would an exercise ball,

but the problem is, dear Universe, there’s no way I could besomething as hard as all that, to wake up yesterdaymorning, stretch over my sixteen selves, bound out like a ball.