To The Nineteen Seventies (first letter)

Dear You,
I suppose all births can be seen as the beginning of an end.  With us this view has seemed favored.  It’s not as if I knew this from the start (and if I did I don’t remember it).  It’s taken a lot of time and experience to sense how I’ve been inscribed.  I’m still figuring it out.  Writing this not sent letter (and perhaps the entirety of the project that it’s a part of) is an attempt to understand and surmount this realization.
We know how you’ve been characterized since your passing.  You’re supposedly what came after the promise of the Nineteen Sixties, when people stopped imagining the future, sought authenticity in what came before, and, when that was unavailable, severed or destroyed, embraced imaginings and simulations of whatever they believed to be lost.  The industrial oil party of the West, built on theft, murder and slavery, was forcibly introduced to its limits and ignored them.  Fights for a better world were displaced by competitions for rights and privileges within the existing order.  Market logic absorbed all other ideological constructs while allowing their likenesses to persist as political theatre.  All of these generalizations are inherently problematic in their scope, omissions and assumptions, but remain irksome considerations for me because of the truths they still seem capable of intimating, the sense they suggest of the present moment and immediate past, the breadth of my lifetime so far.
I return most of all to the supposed replacement of historical agency with inward reflection, of refusal with its performance (perhaps your greatest cliché) – reconfigurations of consciousness and notions of self-realization fueled by utopian and careerist desires that have remained impossible to distinguish from one another.  Does this persist in what I am and do?  Are these not sent letters an unintended perpetuation of the homespun philosophical diatribes and advice initially propagated by your explosion of self-help authors, cult leaders, new-age charlatans, conspiracy theorists, autodidacts and mystics?
Are these not sent letters merely Notes to Myself that dramatize my struggle to become a person?  Do I write because I feel?  Do I make them public because I want others to know how I feel?  Are my not sent letters requests or questions, and if so, are they really just disguises for statements?  Are my subjects a plea?  Please see me as incapable of that.  Please respect me.  Do my not sent letters insist?  I want you to show respect for me by agreeing with me.  This is the way I say it is.
Of course they’re not – not solely.  You have marked me but I continue on.  My life extends far past your demise.  Your reach in death is formidable, but I still detect the possibility of freedom (whatever this might be).  I write these not sent letters in the hopes of giving it form, definition — existence.  Every instance defies the neuroses that fester and spread from your beautifully complex, melancholic corpse.
I’ll write again of course.
jeremy