Travel Minus Travel (or, Make Stuff)

For all you creatives hiding in your gingerbread cages, wake up and make your art. We need you.

And here’s a little poem because we teach what we most need to learn:




The choice is to write.

For all the times you didn’t. 

For when you turn out the light and the bulb

still glows for a haunted second.

For the teakettle building to a blow. 

For the life you might have lived

if you’d said yes

or no, 

or if you’d known all the outcomes, 

if you’d swallowed your screams

and had more babies, or less. 

The choice is to write 

because so many nights you

got drunk and listened to sad songs

and thought poetic thoughts, 

which did not suffice 

or serve to close the valve that

shuttles memory into your heart

to be salvaged, 

to be named. 

The choice is to write 

when you’re supposed to cook dinner

and sweep the floor and 

 make money,

 when you’re strapped and empty

and your mouth bleeds apology. 

Forgive me, it says, I was just about to—


The choice is unnatural because no one

has offered it. 

No one has applauded your sinister

sentences, your stanzas ablaze. Your 

travel minus travel. 

Oh honey, the people say, 

aren’t you creative. 

Aren’t you deep. 

Write, write, write

because you’re down there anyway–

mending power, reorganizing heartbreak, 

cooking up five courses of unmet desire. 

Write. Or whatever your heart asks for in that moment of longing between awake and sleep, do that.    ❤️Lindsey


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