Insomnia is the best way to stay alive

They don’t tell you these secrets before the cameras start rolling.

They don’t tell you much of anything, really.

You’re thrust on set, all pink and crying like it’s the role you were born for

(You were born for it actually. You just don’t know it yet.)

So you figure it out yourself –

Trial and error, guess and check, try and try again.

But be careful.

Once they yell “action!”, there’s no “cut!”

Not until the very end – “that’s a wrap.”

Here’s what I’ve learned:

When the sun goes down, the cameras turn off.

Not for long, but that time when light and dark stop fighting, when day recognizes defeat and retreats to reassemble for the next day’s battle –

When Night claims victory, even the film crew goes to bed.

Then you’re free.

Forbidden love happens here.

In whispered words, light laughter, secret susurrus

The softest touch, the lightest skim of hands and knees and shoulders and who knows what else

The tastes of sweet adoration, the slightest spice of lust

The smells of exploration, obsession, completion.

Never was there a greater love than this, which is blind.

Savor it

Keep your mouth open to drink in the night sky

With stars in your gut, you’ll have freedom on the inside.

Desperation happens here.

When hatred without source or target finally finds its mark, cutting deep,

And you bleed despair from every wound

Sadness wins here.

Hearts feel heaviest in the dead of the Night

Blocks of ice weighing down your chest, enlarging the cavity and stretching your ribs apart

Choking the life that you can’t live anymore

The part you can’t play.

It all happens when no one is watching.

And when the sunrise begins to bleach the heavens

(Believe me, it will become your least favorite shade of sky)

Stars recede, and the whirr of the cameras starts up again

(Inconspicuous, but not silent enough)

You will remember your lines, step into character as if you’re well-rested and sober

Play the part you didn’t choose, but stay awake

For midnight, moonlight will come –

Sooner than you expect it, and just when you need the respite from all the shows and games and make-believes and hiding,

You will find in darkness

The life really worth living.

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