Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal (Gayelene Carbis)

Verity La Heightened Talk

Lessons On Life From My Sister In First Year

I just want to enjoy things I don’t want to think about them. don’t you do anything for fun you can’t help yourself you have to deconstruct everything. you have to talk about the ultimate meaning of everything you can’t just watch something and enjoy it. ok yes there’s The Sound of Music I’ll grant you that yes you love it and you enjoy it but I’ll bet. see there you go you don’t love it just for the music and the story here you are. you have to analyse it and deconstruct it through some particular perspective and now it’s feminism of course. I just want to enjoy the fucking movie I don’t care if Maria’s some feminist heroine (or hero) refusing and resisting oppression and how she has her own autonomy that won’t be squashed by man or nun or even God Herself. why do you do that. can’t you just take anything on face value? what do you do sit there in the theatre tearing it apart ripping it to shreds every little bit every tiny part till there’s nothing left. can’t you just. shit. it’s not that. I’m not against thinking. I just don’t want to do it all the time. I don’t want to think or talk about the meaning of everything. I don’t see why you have to deconstruct everything and not just take it more lightly or something. you take it all so seriously. if you think about what it all means you’re going to end up being critical. you’re going to end up liking nothing. you’re not going to enjoy anything. that’s what happens if you try to work out things and the meaning in everything. and it will get in the way of having a good time. you’ll drive yourself crazy thinking about what it all means and everyone else. otherwise you’re just going to make yourself unhappy. all of us. love you. hey, you know helping me with my essays I couldn’t have done it without you. yeah well meaning really mattered then. but that’s what you have to do at uni. it doesn’t mean you have to do it all the time and everywhere with everything. dad says you think too much. mum thinks you’re full of shit. sometimes. I just think people who don’t think too much are happier. that’s what life’s about, right? I mean thinking like that. you’d be happier if you didn’t think so much, don’t you think? does it make you happy? yeah well, what was that thing you told me about? some title or book or something? oh yeah — why be happy when you could be normal? exactly. I mean like — really. you’d just be happier if you could be more normal. don’t you think?

Gayelene Carbis is an award-winning writer of poetry, prose and plays. She was shortlisted for the Montreal International Poetry Prize, Fish Poetry Prize (Ireland), work & tumble Chapbook Prize and recently, the Adrien Abbott, Martha Richardson and MPU Prizes. Gayelene was awarded a poetry scholarship to Banff in Canada and read poetry in Canada and New York. Her new one-woman show won Best Premiere Production in the US this year and will premiere in Melbourne in 2018. Gayelene has taught creative writing, Australian Indigenous studies and script writing at Melbourne University, Deakin University and RMIT. Gayelene’s first book of poetry, Anecdotal Evidence, was published by Five Islands Press in June 2017.