In this state, post-flu, headache, I refuse to take another aspirin from the box, and I don’t care who wants to tell me to, now the fever has burned itself out. I’d rather gripe in my ruins, confused, a little curious about the vagueness of the world and the obscurity of my own thoughts, not caring if I offend. But why do I keep apologizing to myself, as if the apology were a thing to press my miseries in, a reliquary of the chambered soul, a gilded chest I use to preserve a fake, the sense of my finesse, a sweet indulgence, my secret excuse, a guarded answer to the question of evil, all in an unopened Pandora’s box, a trap for all the sprites and gnats that torment my more sane and likeable self.

12 February 1976