Self and reality. Symbol and language. Myth and image. Memory and consciousness.
Dream and unreality: locus communis.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

moment.01 || free write exercise-part 1

A moment of confrontation: me and the blank paper. The page’s presence overwhelms as an impossible task, or a tight damp knot in my gym shoe laces when I was in the fourth grade, and my fingers clumsily stumbled with the braided cotton strands and the damaged, plastic aglets — until frustrated I finally gave up and wore the shoes anyway for half a day, tripping, falling over every time I tried to run and keep up with the afternoon.
What can I do but shift to present tense and breathe for a handful of seconds. Adjust the placement of the pen in the hand. Stare at the lamp for a heartbeat or two.

Or simply wait for inspiration to arrive as a figure of Hermes, Greek god of messages and proclamations — young, dark-haired, olive-skinned. The eternal youth appearing as my son with unkempt hair, a rough unshaven face, brimming with assertiveness after soccer practice, smelling of green boyhood and confidence— I want this to personify my work, my athletic poems stacked in slightly disorganized piles on my desk. I want my boy to represent an appropriate, valid body of work which explains my creative process, my desire for writing, my raison d'être.

I want too much actually, as I daydream, glancing outside my office window, watching my neighbors settling into their lives and their chores, sorting trash for the weekly pickup or sweeping their wet driveways clear of leaves floating around the subdivision.

So here I am falling into images of the mundane in order to complete a word count, in order to fill out the page with material that may turn into something other when the mood returns, a time when Brandon is less averse to fatherly affection, his facial expressions laughing, slightly wind burned with the rush of falling through the skies, wings on his ankles, a figure of mid-summer himself, god of thieves and alphabets, delivering me a note from the Muses themselves offering a stronger sense of direction and greater awareness of my writing career as it stumbles along with my notations, as I jump into the deep end of the pool without paying attention how deep the water actually is.

That explains me best, leaping headfirst into a project without scoping the territory or the exact limitations of theme or topic, dreaming of the unknowable future—which brings me back almost full circle, of me merely wanting. Only wanting my son to turn around and understand me without further declarations from the world or the heavens above.

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