There are different kinds of joy. There’s the soft sticky suffocation of melting chocolate, the bracing kiss of lemon, the imagined gliding on wings, the comfort of line-dried duvets in front of a fire with a hot mug, the satisfaction of a kitten choosing your lap in which to sleep.
Fear comes in many flavors, too. The dry grit of not breathing, the black licorice of the unwanted surprise, the copper whiff of a fight gone wrong and the slick, sharp brush of truth unwanted. Sometimes, the two intermingle, playing off each other like cat and mouse, with neither sure who is the cat. A little salt of fear brings out the complex notes of caramel. A lot make the gourmet dulce de leche inedible.
(Sharp. Bright. In focus. Breathe. Look what guts can do. Feel alive. Acknowledge your lack of birdness and the bitter taste of gravity.) (The rain patters overhead while the fire crackles. The musty scent of a well-loved books mingles with steam from a cup of perfectly prepared tea.)
I prefer chocolate and you choose vanilla. I like my joy fresh and brilliant and spicy to the touch and you like gentle and enveloping. A craving for coffee is not satisfied by banana pudding.
Re: Why can’t you just enjoy something safe? Please see above.