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On Connection

Hi all. This is not so much a blog post so much as a collection of thoughts; I think there’s a difference. Lately, I’ve been thinking about connection, and its tenuousness. We form relationships out of convenience, out of proximity (dating apps of today are a testament to that feat of engineering,) and it’s been hard lately to really get outside of my immediate sphere. This semester was an exercise in brutality, and it was difficult, especially difficult, to maintain connections to the people nearest and dearest, my friends in my program, who all had their own lives to attend to as we descended into the maelstrom.


And this is not to ascribe blame anywhere: I myself have been remiss in replying to people, and that’s taken its toll on some of my more distant friendships. Lately, a ball of anxiety has sat smugly on my chest, delighting in the discomfort that comes from potentially ruining something by accident. It doesn’t seem enough to say “I’m sorry, I’ve had a lot going on,” because while true, that doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon. Next semester is a hodgepodge of commitments: three graduate classes, an internship, teaching a class on writing and the arts, and more I’m probably forgetting. Is it even fair of me to promise something I know potentially will not change? I’ve been on the receiving end of that particular promise before, and it never ended well for me. So, I remain at an impasse, the anxiety still on my chest, all over my fingers.


And still, yet, there are new connections to be celebrated, chief among them a new friend who talks to me about literature outside of poetry, and is genuinely interested in my takes on everything, from DeLillo to Russian autocrats. It feels like new ground is breaking, just as winter has begun in earnest. I feel like someone actually cares about me and my opinions for the first time in a long time. As I write this, the snow plow is clearing my parking lot outside. I can hear the scraping against the pavement. And maybe what’s being uncovered out there can be spun into a metaphor later (will be, in fact,) but tonight, I’m content to let it be what it is.


Just a thought for your Sunday night.


Kat


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