I am still being chased by the same assassin. This assassin is relentless and I have had not one moment’s rest since the hunt begin last spring. I’ve tried to make peace, call a truce, end this meaningless war, but you can’t reason with this assassin. More machine than man, it finds me every day. Maybe that’s because I won’t give up my position. I am stubborn, yet unarmed. I am vulnerable, yet unconscious. The assassin comes for me in my sleep, and it is not Teflon. It is not any toxin on planet earth, nor any of my many vices, nor any enemy I’ve inadvertently or deliberately made through anger or simple obliviousness. This assassin has mysterious powers. It can perform the elusive chemical reaction known as fusion, which, if we were to find it here on Earth, would solve all energy problems, end all oil wars, and make for a damn good action movie starring the starlet of your choice as the highly improbable scientist. This assassin, who is watching me, who is waiting for me, who wakes me from a deep slumber every fucking day (except the cloudy ones), is none other than the sun. Being prone to international travel and moments of reckless abandon, I’ve felt my heart tugged, if not entirely eviscerated, from thousands of miles away, but this assassin reaches me across millions. All it would take to make me less vulnerable would be one late stoned night and a spontaneous desire to move the furniture, but the thing is, I like my bed where it is. And so I remain the unwilling, tortured victim of this impassive, inhuman ball of fire, which, like so many forces in my life, adheres to no laws and defies all rules. It is simply there, in a constant state of explosion, giving us all life and asking nothing in return. I can hate it, I can love it, I can live by it, I can shrink from it, but it cares not. Each morning, until some indeterminate day in October when I am granted reprieve, it shines through my shades and curtains and reminds me I am not alone, I am not in charge, and I am not asleep. Cruel and harsh and sharp as its light may be, it says, “awake, and begin, and begin again, it’s too late, I’ve shined through your shades, I’ve pierced your filmy veils, and there’s no use pretending you can’t see me or all that I illuminate. You can’t go back to the strange beauty of your dreams, you are here, and I’ve brought you, and I give you light, and life, too.” You can’t argue with an assassin who’s also keeping you alive.

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