Image by Rickiesha Deegan
Tell me you’ll come with me on the next part of the journey. Even if you are unsure, everything unfolds with inherent intention.
With the glorious task of commissioning writers for a new collection of sincere, heartfelt writing for Tell Me Like You Mean It volume 4, I found it took longer than usual.
All has been difficult. I have been struggling to write down any words at all.
Tell you like I mean it? I couldn’t tell you anything at all.
My whole apartment has become an extension of my consciousness. I ask myself why I would get out of bed when in the next room I walk into the contents of my brain’s mess, consciousness splattered all over the place. On writing this it seems clear why I am vacuuming every second day.
It follows, then, that putting words on page would be too concrete. It would be a validation of COVID-normal, validating the rupture in the way I was inhabiting the world before. Doing so would establish an after. Too much specificity. Me as a Someone, something corporeal, fixed.
A liminal space like this is what I’ve always thought I wanted, what I thought I was predisposed to, and where ultimate imagination, possibility might occur. But it seems like I’m stuck, incapable of saying. (Yet very capable of watching most of the Netflix lifestyle category)
Meaning is established in its own way, in everything it does. Something is meant, yet not always clear to you.
Bringing together a collection of writers should have been easier than the drawing blood act of my own writing. But it just wasn’t, like so many things haven’t been this year.
It was a privilege to work with writers whose work appears here and for all who I had conversations with along the way. Poetry is a living thing: conversations around this journal taught me grace, humility, compassion and openness. I thank the incredible folks who had, found or created a notch of capacity within themselves to tell us like they mean it.
Kiki Amberber: Two Scenes
Riley Daisy Francis: Little Animal
Amelia Zhou: This is where you hear the echo
Holly Friedlander Liddicoat: in/on/swamp
Lily Cameron: Generated I
Dominic Symes: Beginning and Ending with a Line from Hera Lindsay Bird
Lucy Van: Because It’s Slower it Races Away
Sophie Rasic: Intergenerational status anxiety is a pending job app
Hannah Donnelly: Soft Edges
Kaya Ortiz: Only Heaven
Arben Dzika: Untitled Grasp
Mitch Thomas Cave: when i tell you to run, you must run
Panda Wong: free meat on a suburban street
Anita Solak: this is just another receipt
Emma Rayward: The Camera Adds 10 Pounds: A Short Film Analysis
Shastra Deo: Love Carefully
It’s in the spirit of the journal for me to stand back and let the writers words speak, but just a small editorial offering: Rickiesha Deegan’s beautiful cover artwork came towards the end of the project, and is a visual summary of the words contained within as well as the process of editing the journal.
You haven’t travelled alone so far and you won’t go unaccompanied into the next movement. Does the future loom? Yes, but it’s also inviting. To go exactly where you’re meant to, a calm inevitability.