This week's Five Star roundup is brought to us by an old insult, the many incarnations of the precious things we carry, the revenge of living well, by being for an art, defensive snobbery, the privilege of not always having to think about it, victim blaming and abuser apologies, laughter, and Herta Müller:
The words that make up those stories have become an indistinguishable part of me, like my crooked pinkies or my genetic predisposition for alcoholism. I rarely notice them any more.
I’ve been missing for awhile, but I’ve been trying to find my words.
Meemaw died yesterday, at the age of 80.
Who does he think he is? Who do you think you are? Who do I think I am? How dare we be bold. How dare we be ourselves, tell the truth, laugh, be happy.
"I Am For An Art: An Old Manifesto I’d Almost Forgotten I Believed In" by Jen Groeber at Mama Art:
I am for an art that witnesses moments of absurd despair and self-loathing. I am for an art that celebrates the gritty, fearsome strength of the obese woman living inside of small women.
Snark is a conscious attempt to cast aspersion for narcissistic reward. Writers who use social media, or other public forums, to dis other writers are seeking to convert resentment into attention. It’s a tool of self-promotion.
When I was in my mid-twenties, I made a mistake that seems unimaginable to me now. I went to a Halloween party at the home of a black guy I’d recently met… in blackface.
Such was the depth of my white privilege that it had not occurred to me that my makeup was problematic.
Enduring violence can do both to you, you know. Can attract punishment to you, can cause villagers to heap blame upon you. Can change everything, including your very DNA. Can steel your senses and your spine, giving you untold power. Can make you wild and monstrous in the best and worst ways.
I open one eye and examine the equipment in the room.
“Is one of these things a lipo machine? Maybe my pain is coming from a thin layer of fat,” I say.
Please come back and share good writing with us over the coming week to be featured on the next Five Star. Submit it by Tuesday at midnight CST to nominate it for inclusion in the next roundup.
And because you are a fan of finding good, new writing on the internet: