In his Netflix comedy special Equanimity, Dave Chappelle describes how he writes jokes backwards: "I will write a punchline with no particular setup in mind." He'll write the punchline on a slip of paper, drop it in a fishbowl he has filled with other punchlines, and occasionally pick one out and try to make it work.

Sometimes the Muse will whisper a phrase to me that's an absolute bar. I'll jump out of bed and write it down in my notebook. I'll run out of the shower and text it to myself.  I'll meditate on the phrase until I find a post that it belongs in.

This situation is perhaps the most exciting part of being a creative person; I know the bars are coming, and I know you won't expect them. It doesn't even matter if I tell you the bars beforehand; I know they'll still surprise you.

Here are some bars that you can expect in the future:

Summoned like a song and gifted like a dream

You can create magic by believing in it

Truth-telling is redemptive

Here are some bars from the past:

Accomplishment is only an illusion that makes us pant.

I wonder what comes first: a way with words or something beautiful to write about.

Sometimes "I love you" means "I forgive you." Sometimes "I love you" means "are you okay?" When Meghana looks up at me, and I see two moons twinkling in her eyes. Sometimes "I love you" means "you are the most beautiful thing I've ever seen."

I collect whispers, cobble together thoughts, and beg for a central thesis. There are times the combination reveals itself, a sequence of words that refutes my inadequacy. That's when I feel like I'm weaving magic. That's when I know I'm spitting bars.