When the moment gets real and gut wrenching, I take out a notebook and pen to write down the bones of my feelings. Perhaps it is the flight in me to draw inward, away from the world towards freely expressing what’s in my head. Then again, it may be the fight in me to wrestle with complicated feelings, chronicle moments of joy, or create a sense of peace and calm.
Summer got real five months ago in western NY like the long anticipated smile from an infant gazing into his mother’s face. Clouds like tiny fists tumbled across blue skies. A warm breeze beckoned the ash’s feathery leaves to bow and bend. White blossoms danced across the great lawn, open to new beginnings.
As days grew longer, lilacs and peonies bloomed like children swelling with delight to begin summer vacation. The time of brightness and warmth had finally arrived for real and I couldn’t wait for the grass to tickle my toes and gaze into starlit nights. Music and laughter drifted over backyard patios while crickets buzzed, chirped and hummed to their lovers.
By October, the insect chorus fell silent; their love dead and gone. The Autumn Applause had burst into brilliant hues of red, orange and yellow. In the blink of an eye, the moment was whisked away by icy gusts – nothing gold can stay.
Outside my window, November snow falls gently on the majestic blue spruce; pine cones lie scattered in frozen patterns on the ground. I am stunned by the cold, starkness of the real scene.
My desk light casts shadows upon my notebook. Doubt rises like water boils for coffee. Surrounded by great literary minds, my prose pales to the likes of Shelly, King and Dickinson. Wise teachers reach through tattered pages with sage advice for writing practice. Strunk and White, Zinsser and Goldberg urge me forward.
Masters and humble practitioners grace my shelves and fill my mind with more ideas than I can keep up with. I hunch over my book and squeeze my pen, choking words and phrases that leave me sore. I give in to the moment and give it all I can. But is it enough? This moment is uncomfortable, exciting, and real.
What do you think?