A Journal

"I'm going to come back to West Virginia when this is over. There's something ancient and deeply-rooted in my soul. I like to think that I have left my ghost up one of those hollows, and I'll never really be able to leave for good until I find it. And I don't want to look for it, because I might find it and have to leave".----Breece D'J Pancake, in a letter to his mother. 

Geramee Hensley

Four Ways to Kill Yourself


Live a happy and fulfilled life. Find a nice girl (or guy or toaster, whatever) and kiss said person (toaster) on the mouth. Grow your lungs’ peonies in a vase of hair every night when you go to bed. Spend all your money on planting peach trees—seriously—have a lawn of twenty-five to thirty peach trees. Let every noise be a harp-note, your morning jog a playful storm of staccato against the chords of wind.


If you must, be dangerous. Skydive, bullfight, touch your boss’s wife’s heinie with your groin, while neither of you wear pants. Eat so much calzone you become one. You will suicide; do so with style. Risk your skin, get fired, walk the bad parts of town and bring your muggers flowers, because even a mugger deserves to feel pretty every once in a while.


And yes, sometimes your little heart will be a silo bloated with raging glass-liquid and to speak or move is to flood ignition. Getting out of bed will feel impossible but grab that feeling and Jiminy Cricket its ass. Never forget that it rains melted glass on planet HD189733b, and when you rain melted glass on Earth, we will glassblow you a new heart.


When you’re ready, pick those peaches ripe as tombstones. Give them to your family, friends, or to the toaster. Then, cut down all your trees and from the lumber build a store where you sell apologies—here’s one for not killing yourself better—or slower—or surer.

In a drawer, I keep all of these religious items from a time when I was not living a life of sin. There are a few crucifixes, prayer cards, prayer rocks, and even a card from my first communion when I was seven. They don't mean what they used to to me, but I still hold on to them. Honestly, I'm not entirely sure why I keep them, but getting rid of them now would feel like a partial funeral. Maybe I'm not quite ready to bury that part of myself.

Geramee Hensley was born in Cleveland, Ohio and studies creative writing, professional writing, and philosophy at Capital University. His work has been featured in The ReCap, a magazine for which he also edits poetry. He has also taught poetry to a creative writing class at Capital.