Success, or…

Samain                                                                                Stent Moon

The post below, written before this one, has pushed me to finally get this out, down. Success. That bitch goddess. That awful demanding god. Subtle. Get good grades. Make a difference. Make a name for yourself. As if the name you already have isn’t enough. Graduate valedictorian and have expectations laid on you, absorb them, make your own. Don’t slip up. Don’t fail. Don’t succumb. Keep at it. Do well. Do better. Do best. Do. Do. Do.

Here’s the rub for me. I set myself up when I left the Presbytery. Success now would look like published books, a little shelf beside all the books by others that I’ve collected. My own shelf. My name on the spine. Money. Maybe a touch of fame. Hasn’t happened. At least not yet. Will it? Probably not, but, you never know.

Are the only two options success or failure? Don’t think so, but it feels that way. A binary choice means if not this, then that. No publication, no success = failure. Maybe.

No question I’ve failed at getting books published. That’s the facts, not fake news. At all. So. Let’s assume I don’t ever succeed at getting a book or books published. I’m not conceding, not at all. This is both a hypothetical and the reality for me right now.

Just reread my Percival post, A Fool On The Hill. Can’t seem to shake this question. Does not publishing mean I declare my life, at least the last 30 years, a failure? I failed at publishing. Yes. Does that somehow stain me, all of me? Make me a Self no longer able to put a trophy up on the shelf? Doesn’t seem to make sense, but my mind keeps circling around, circling around, gathering my long-winged feathers, gathering my long-winged feathers.

Wish I could put this matter to rest. It bugs me, keeps returning. Should I just yes, I’m a failure, now I’m going forward anyhow? Or, should I reframe success? Abandon the idea as a bourgeoisie conceit? Figure out why the subject continues to resurface?



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