word. (on the exaltation found on the other side of writer's block)
It's been a long time that I've been looking for you. I understand that looking for you isn't like looking for something tangible; I really can't expect to find you under a pile of magazines or behind a sweater in the closet. When I was first started searching, I looked out. When that didn't work, I started looking in, but the problem was that when I looked in, I didn't sing to you. I clawed at you to come out. For years I did that, while you were hibernating. The wielder of a perfect combination of words, a message worth repeating, worth sharing. I tried, again and again, but it seemed that the more I tried, the less I actually liked what came out.
At one time in my life, I thought, I was a writer. It was what I did. Whether on a home turf beach, or as a silent stranger in a voluptuous city, or with orphaned chimpanzees on the rim of the Congo basin, where rainforest lightning storms pulsated the same electric heartbeat into every denizen in the jungle, I wrote. I wrote for the enormity of deafening sanctity, weeping in the pew of a humble village church up Keauhou mauka, and for the delicious, beckoning Kona sunset, still unmatched in the things that even its memory does to my heart. I know that I wrote because I have the journals to prove it, some stashed in Hawaii, some in Chicago, some in India. They may not weather the storm of forever-ness, but for a lifetime or two, they are there, my temporary mark on the world.
Then one day, I started writing less, and I discovered the very reason Buddhism says that detachment alleviates suffering. Why did I start writing less? I have no answer other than the one that says that change is inevitable, and no one thing will be that thing forever. But as I watched you slip away -- I am talking to you, writer -- my panic grew. Who was slipping away? Was it me? And if I slipped away for good--
Who was left?
I fought this, which seems silly in retrospect. A struggle against the current. Oh, if you spoke to me, I would have no hesitation telling you how important it is to surrender, really surrender. And yet, here I was, fighting what was happening, and in the process, living inside my tidy little lie.
I am a writer.
I am a writer.
The problem with living inside a lie is just that -- you are living inside of something. You are cloaked and suffocated, in a latex suit, fit perfectly to your own body. You never forget you are inside this suffocating thing. And the problem with the Truth is that it doesn't go away.
Still I sat in front of this same brick wall, rubbing it mercilessly, maniacally, forming blisters and then rubbing some more, thinking that if I worked at it hard enough, eventually I would release the storm that was building behind it. Blowing a sailboat across an ocean. Stretching a lifetime to an eternity. The dust fell softly at my feet (the sad degeneration of a fair queendom), fine white powder dust, ancient sands wrung through volcanoes and time, and with the dust accumulated the eventual shards and slivers.
And I kept cutting my toes.
The Truth was that it was all a mess of white smoke and I couldn't see a damn thing, but as the curtain began to clear, I realized that I could actually see something. There was something there. It had two legs, two arms, a heart, and it wanted to go somewhere. It wanted to sing something or maybe even yell something. It had blonde hair and a host of thoughts that jangled from one end of her head to the other.
My, oh my. It was me. And I was writing.
Well written piece of truthful introspection! Self discovery is part of the raison d'être.
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