1Although, this of course raises the question of “what is an essay.” To which there is no good answer, and to which there are many good answers.1a, 1b, 1c, 1d, 1e
1aA good essay is like a lonely cat: it rubs up against everything, until it finds something warm.
1b Or a good essay is like Thomas Edison, playing with filaments until something lights him up.
1c Or a good essay is like an unremembered injury, which seems to throb only until its cause is remembered.
1d Or a good essay is like your mom.1d†
1d† Or a good essay is really like your mom: warm and loving an comforting, but resolutely insistent that you own your shortcomings.
1e Or a good essay is like a writer with no paper and no shoes: too many footnotes.