Monumental Expressions: A Growing New Yorker Times Collaboration

What is life about?

What is life all about? What is the most important thing individuals seek? Two different questions that frequently intersect the imagination with potential to engender a wide range of answers. One person might perceive them as notes in a chord from the same song, while another perceives them as two different songs provoking different emotions. Truly, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and yet the bolder eyes are beholden to authors that inform and form individual paradigms. Thus, this document is a monumental expression of authorial diversity on the subject of life and its quintessential importance. You may see metaphors, and some answers that are profoundly optimistic, some are simple, while others will appear refreshingly innocent; but make no mistake, this document communicates reality. It is the unaltered expressions of a culturally diverse authorial community. It is one question, many answers, from one community. It’s a 21st century rediscovery of truths, old and dear, articulated by men and women, women and men, who have answered the New Yorker Time’s clarion call to action; action that will form the foundation of a collaborative artistic association. This document transcends the minutia, aiming to peel back the facade that distracts away from our true artistic talents. It’s a document that will ultimately define the artistic community of the New Yorker Times. So don’t merely ready it, write it, as you too can be part of the solution by contributing to this Monumental Expression. Read, and then ‘act’ at the close of this document.

The Most Important Thing Individuals Seek



Maudie Marin Biggers-
Is the best form of therapy.
Making things flow in harmony-
even if the bars don’t rhyme.
Even without the dime,
people try to pay just to listen.
If they only knew what they were missing
when they should be hearing more
within the depths of these words.
Maybe if people listened, or read,
other subjects instead of money, cars, clothes and hoes.
I suppose, that’s what our society says is important.
That’s what you’re supposed to adore,
That’s what you’re supposed to have ambition for.
But in the end- is it worth it?
Can those things mend
what’s really troubling you tonight?
If that’s what you believe,
I’m apathetic to why you grieve.
The society we live in deceives
your mind, and if you just took the time
to review and rewind,
maybe youd be like me.
Writing things that matter,
stressing things that are bigger,
striving for something better,
within your heart.
Don’t fall apart because you dont have what they do,
or because you were built with different screws,
Don’t feel guilt because youre not them,
feel guilt because you try to be them,
and not you.
Do things that make you smile,
and keep that smile even when your sky isnt blue.
I promise, fate will carry you home.

I wrote that poem a couple weeks ago and posted it on my tumblr, because I was asking myself the same exact question. I have found that the most important thing individuals seek is love. With love comes respect, honesty, and acceptance. In today’s society, people feel more love on a dance floor than they have ever felt in their own homes. This is why I’m going to school to be a psychologist. I will lend an ear, and show my love, without the money. I hope to lead as an example, and I aim to write until I get arthritis. One day, I will be appreciated. Accepted. Loved. Until then, I’ll be preaching FOR the choir, WITH the choir.


Justine Haney
People are searching for all sorts of things in life, but the the most important thing all individuals seek? Acceptance. As beautiful as it is to stand out and be different, people crave the opportunity to be who they are without being judged for it. Be black or white; be gay or straight; be thick or thin. People want to not feel like they have to change to be accepted. To be relevant. To be loved unconditionally. People just want to matter. To someone, anyone.
I don’t know who you are. I don’t know where you’re from. I don’t know what you’ve done. But you matter to me.

Lorraine Mellendorf-Oxley
The most important thing individuals seek is self–his individual, unique identity that is an expression of his truth, his inner light, his soul. Many will say that the pursuit of wisdom is most important, or that one must seek intelligence to become wise, and that truth is the foundation of these. What is truth but an effect of individual experience that is the cumulative value of “self”? Every man, woman and child awakens everyday to self and spends every moment thereafter improving upon it. Through trials and triumphs he makes his way believing in the only truth he’ll ever really know with any certainty–self. All other pursuits are subject to “self” and cannot be superseded by “self”. Therefore, no other pursuit of man can be more important.

Kristen Hawley
As individuals we all seek validation. Whether we seek to fit in and be part of the majority, or we seek to fit in on the fringes of society, we still hunt out our place in this crazy world. Some look to others for validation, while some look inward for it. Each quest for validation is as distinctive as a fingerprint. Though our journeys may be entirely different, we share a desired destination — validation.


Charles Pleasant
I really can’t speak for (individuals) collectively. I can speak for myself. As I awaken each day of my life I prepare for pray five times a day, that allows me to get closer to my Lord. As each pray gives me or allows me expiation of sin. This is my gift from my Lord.


S. Kodejs
Fulfillment. Each individual follows a personal quest to seek fulfillment. It may take the form of finding success, achievement, love, power, wealth, health or spiritual enlightenment. Fulfillment can be sought in the most minor of triumphs that weave the fabric of our days, or in goals that take a lifetime to achieve. Without achieving fulfillment, our accomplishments – large or small – are meaningless.

Importance: (To Matter)

mebestMary J. Staller
What does the young woman entering a beauty pageant, the politician running for office, the baby throwing a temper tantrum and the terrorist planning a bombing have in common? They are seeking recognition. It may take the form of a simple birthday card, an employee promotion, a college diploma, a diamond engagement ring or something goes terribly wrong and it takes the form of something horrific. From the time we are children and all through our lives the most important thing individuals not only seek but need is recognition.


EnergyJosee Honeyball
Love. Without Love we are not community, we have no voice, we have no power. Yet within Love we can achieve anything, we become limitless beings, we reach for more, we share a common goal and we do not settle for poverty, abuse and all inequalities. In Love we become a priceless, precious, propulsive force for all.

Stuart Aken
Call it naive, romantic, or what you will: most people seek love. They may call it affirmation, fellow-feeling, recognition, affection, or any number of things. But, ultimately, we all seek the confidence that accrues from knowing that we are loved by one or many. It drives ambition, accounts for compassion, fires lust, inspires courage and creates compromise.


Rachel Cunningham
I dreamed I was a lighthouse keeper, in a tower by the sea, And every night, the stars bloomed bright, and the moon watched over me. Though the wind it howled around my door, the gulls let a mourner’s cry, The night it was mine, the stars my wine, and the waves – my Lullaby.
I awoke to a city incensed, in a tower in a sea Of concrete faces, eyes of glass, as far as I could see. Yet somehow in that sleep-drugged state, I sensed a shift in mind. The future was mine and I knew in time, I’d hear that Lighthouse Lullaby…

monumental expressionsKarl Coates
The strength to face death without fear, to find inner piece in the fact that you have lived your life to its fullest potential, and to exhale your final breath with a smile on your face and have no regrets… that’s me fucked then !


Ashley Chapman
The most important thing people seek is a place for their heart to call home. As children and young teens, we dream of a perfect relationship. For girls, we dream of a marvelous white dreamland wedding, with the perfect husband to be. We seek to find the most important thing in life, a place for our heart, where we are loved, safe, comforted, trusted, and above all have our own perfect happily ever after. We each seek companionship with the perfect soul mate, that one person on this world. The person makes you forget everything else and you are inevitably consumed by their being. That is the most important thing a person seeks in life.

GeeGee Anton
Man’s greatest sorrow and joy comes from one fact: We as individuals need each other. Even individually, we must find Universal Truth not only in our work but in our presence among others. In this practice of acceptance we begin to ask the right questions. Ernest Mach, a philosopher of science, shed light on the process of how facts (which appear to be unrelated) are processed, understood, and eventually fully realized and expanded. The first time new information is presented to our minds it is seemingly unrecognizable, and alien in our cognitive realm. The details in which we grasp onto are merely pieces of a whole picture to which we don’t have yet. Frustration often ensues in those who seek higher knowledge because of the ever lingering fact that someone else has thought something (perhaps better) before them, that their knowledge, their instincts, their intellectual superiority is unworthy of celebration or cause. Mach explains however, that knowledge does not belong to one person, knowledge is a continuous cycle between people, so not only do we need each other, it is imperative to our individuality that we seek one another.


Monumental ExpressionsRachel Cunningham
I dreamed I was a lighthouse keeper, in a tower by the sea, And every night, the stars bloomed bright, and the moon watched over me. Though the wind it howled around my door, the gulls let a mourner’s cry, The night it was mine, the stars my wine, and the waves – my Lullaby.
I awoke to a city incensed, in a tower in a sea Of concrete faces, eyes of glass, as far as I could see. Yet somehow in that sleep-drugged state, I sensed a shift in mind. The future was mine and I knew in time, I’d hear that Lighthouse Lullaby…


Daniel Robinson
The most important thing an individual could possibly seek is the pure spring waters of truth. Once one can ascertain the difference between light and darkness, (the truth and a lie), then the whole world is one’s oyster. Many try, but the majority follow the lie blindly like sheep and go tumbling into the dark pit. What blocks the way to truth is doubt, and, fear. These are the biggest obstacles. One has to first learn to stand up on one’s soap-box grasping the truth by the neck, and, then writing it out thoroughly for all to hear. Then the truth becomes “NEWS!”


Brian Philip Craik Smith
Something new, something different and an integration of technology. thoroughly enjoyable prose, artistic and interactive content – especially in a group – my Popagami books have all that and more.

Glenn Kleier
The quintessential, all-encompassing aspiration: Happiness.

Donald Thomsen
To know themselves and to be accepted for who they really are, not only by others, but by themselves. Most of humanity dons a facade designed to help them fit in, but in reality hides themselves from who they really are.


The above contributions represent day one of the New Yorker Times collaborative foundational statement: “Monumental Expressions.” It is far from complete, and requires your contribution in order for it to become truly monumental. Please take the time to add your own submission in the form below. If you want to do more, you can also join our writing staff by visiting the following link: Frackle Media Group


Writers interested in having their ideas published in the Monumental Expression Of Writers (M.E.O.W.) can act by submitting a short, one paragraph answer to the question: “What is the most important thing individuals seek?”

You can enter and submit your answer to this question in the form below.

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M.E.O.W. Monumental Expression of Writers: A New Yorker Times Collaboration

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