You’re Not Alone

When I saw this street art mural I was reminded of a comforting quote from the great writer Kurt Vonnegut:

Nothing I can say can have any effect, except to say to somebody else, “You’re not alone.” That’s as far as it goes.

Of course when I went looking for the specific Vonnegut quotation quite a few others popped up:

And how should we behave during this Apocalypse? We should be unusually kind to one another, certainly. But we should also stop being so serious. Jokes help a lot. And get a dog, if you don’t already have one.

We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be.

I want to stay as close on the edge as I can without going over. Out on the edge you see all kinds of things you can’t see from the center… Big, undreamed-of things — the people on the edge see them first.

Let others bring order to chaos. I will bring chaos to order. If all writers would do that, then perhaps everyone will understand that there is no order in the world around us, that we must adapt ourselves to the requirements of chaos instead.

We are healthy only to the extent that our ideas are humane

Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven’s sake. Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possibly can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something.

I urge you to please notice when you are happy, and exclaim or murmur or think at some point, “If this isn’t nice, I don’t know what is.”

And so it goes.


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