This week’s post at Bookslut is a treat: An interview with Jean-Paul Pecqueur, whose book of poems, The Case Against Happiness, came out in November.
What did happiness ever do to you? Why prosecute a case against it?
It eluded me for thirty-plus years. Simply put, for the majority of my life I did not know what happiness felt like. Then one day, I felt happy. I was living in Tucson at the time. Something lifted, dissipated, broke loose—and I was happy for the first time in my life. From this new perspective, I finally clearly saw the book of poems I had been working on. The title is reflexive. The book is a sort of testimony to living one’s life as if making the case against happiness. Unfortunately, having experienced happiness I also now know how fleeting the feeling can be. I’m not sure how it works for others, but for me it takes a lot of concentrated work to be happy.
As always, read the whole thing!