Monday, November 28
She's her melancholy. I've not my words. And there's a ghost come calling from the dark.
I'd a wholly unreasonable pledge made, true - but still I've every intent of keeping it. We'd these drinks down, of course, more than several, maybe - but still, the drinking doesn't matter. I'd promised them I'd apply for an MFA program, a program in particular, a program across the pond. I'd no good reason to make such a pledge, in truth, no good reason except perhaps their words and the bolstering booze flowing so freely and this pride I'd been trying on as if it were a second skin I'd someday wear. Here a clarification may be in order: this isn't a cry - oh, praise me, praise me! soothe this ego! - but a matter of observation instead. It's not that I haven't communion here, in words; it's not that I haven't desire of words that are mine alone, my blood in typeface; it's not that I haven't a yearning for greater skills than these meager tools I call my own. Rather, there's this: I haven't the confidence and less so the skills. Instead, I've these exercises I've begun, carved out for myself - and these exercises alone. Daily I say I'll write - and near-daily I do. Several submissions I say I'll each month compile - and thus far, I have. Even if for each success there's a dozen failings, this routine I'll still call success.
Except.... except most often, it feels as if I'm trying to sculpt without touching the clay. Except most often it feels as if I'm trying to skip stones across a river run dry. Except most often it feels as if I've forgotten, as metaphors go, how to throw at all. Still, I'm trying... and maybe somehow that'll be enough?
Other worlds I lose myself in too: I've been running more again, and all the more aware I am that I've not so many years left on these joints, their aches perpetually and infinitely spilling forth. On account of these aches I'll train all the harder, trying to squeeze more out of the years I do have; I'll reach for the slights that spurred me on in years before, press on for the motivations I'd in these past few years allowed myself to forget. If I'm to ever realize whatever potential may or may not in these legs rest, I've a limited window, it's true. Of such truths I'm all too aware - and for it all the harder will I run.
'You're a better writer than I am,' she says. 'I'm not shitting you rainbows. You are.' So she says, earnest and plain-speaking, but other truths I've argued and will continue to argue: most of those who'll call themselves writers oughtn't, haven't any notion the gravity of such a name. And this is what I think of as I watch her parse phrases. She's writing the jumbled thoughts before the jump, of the long descent - to madness, to redemption, to death - and as she writes her face draws taunt with the sort of thoughts that precede tears, so personally does she take the story as she crafts it. And yet, this is what I think of: I think of what happens when a volcano meets a tornado and I think of what happens when circumstances meet a dreamscape context, all of it blurred by the moment and yet equally detached from past and present. A river of time washes over all of it, and for all practical purposes, words are useless. So too, maybe, are senses. I don't know what to think and I don't know what to say and I don't speak because I haven't a thought to give voice. Maybe I've been running too much - or maybe I've still too many to go, having not yet found my enough.
So I've finished this second round of drink, realizing that if I'm drinking more often it may yet be I'm drinking less. Perhaps this is moderation - what a foreign word! - or perhaps it's becoming habit. So many things, I think, half-drunk and happily aloof, are more a matter of perspective than definition; this, I think, is probably one of them. Likewise, she's a knack for running down - long limbs leaping miles forward ahead and down with each and every stride - and I for the climbs. Another thing I'm realizing: the way we'll tread this earth's as much a matter of genes as anything, maybe.
Or: I'm once more writing more and saying less, probably. Alas, I don't know how else to translate these living beating breathing jumbled days. In other words, your guess is as good as mine.