Saturday, August 25, 2018
I could ask you to be more careful. I could ask you to choose lovelier words. Take a pause. More poetry, less logic. See me in three dimensions. See me, period.
I'm not going to do that.
Say what you want.
You said some words. I wanted to brush them off, but unfortunately they stuck, like lint.
Here's what happened next.
Every color on the street looked brighter. The skies opened up and I captured what I could, me as photographer, me as artist, leaving the rest for next time. There will be a next time.
The sadder I got about what you said, and I did get sadder and sadder, the better the palette, the bare, brave branches, the hero plants in the cracked sidewalk. This went on for a while.
I rode the subway and nobody's talking to me and we sat together in convivial silence, the strangers and me. It was glorious.
I borrowed the words of Henry David Thoreau to help my child, via text and I will save that exchange forever.
Then I employed my own imperfect, true words, crafting them this way and that, writing prose and poetry, waking up in the middle of the night to get it down, then deleting it and writing something better in the morning.
There was quite the prolific 24 hours that followed. It might not be over yet. I didn't plan it that way, but that's what happened.
It's as though something inside me needed to prove you wrong.
But alas, something else happened. You were right after all. I wish it were different, but wishing doesn't make it so.
And really, what does it mean that there were crystalline moments inside this brain of mine? It means when something bad happens I make good art. That's it.
Say what you want. Most of what you say is kind. Nobody listens better than you. Is there room for improvement? I don't know. I don't need you to be a saint.
When you say something that sounds like air being let out of a balloon or falls with a thud, know this.
It's okay. It will work out. After a time, I'll want to talk with you again. If you hadn't said what you did, I would have never written this. It wouldn't exist without you and your crappy words.
From the archives:
The other than
Saturday, August 11, 2018
Like when you make new friends but keep the old and the cream always rising to the top, things have their way of sorting themselves out.
But at two o’clock in the morning, when one door closes and another one hasn’t opened yet, you’re thinking that when one door closes it stays closed and another one closes and another one closes.
What if what doesn’t kill you doesn’t make you stronger but kills you just not all at once but a little at a time? And then once you’re good and awake you realize that what doesn’t kill you does makes you stronger and it will still kill you a little bit at a time because that is what life is and we all have an expiration date.
And then you manage to fall asleep but damned if you can remember the transition or what worked and what didn’t. The alarm goes off the next day and you’re tired from time spent awake last night but you have rested and slept some of the time and there’s some magic in that. And wouldn’t you know the very start of some burgeoning sorting is evident and you know that sleep, a little or a lot, is a sweet elixir. What life has taught you, namely to take what you get even if it’s one step forward, two steps back is doing its thing and lifting you, if not to seize the day, at least to meet it where it is.
From the archives:
These Books Carry Me