Saturday, April 7, 2012


Smiles depress me,
--every bit as much as the obsequious "sir" at the end of everything.

So, too, the ready use of my first or given name.

When my friend smiles and calls me by name,
well, that's something.

When an unknown person does so,
that's something else altogether.

I don't mean informal social relations are bad.
I'm not against informality.

But, this is another thing:
the pretense that we are all friends when we are not,
and we are not going to be.

There is tremendous social pressure here.
In my own life it has been destructive of the ability to think things through,
or to recognize the utter ugliness of it all,
which would be a cleaner, clearer starting point than a false smile.

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