Friday, April 06, 2012

unrequited & insatiable

me, circa 2005.
photo by Gary Quick.
For years, I wouldn't admit that I wrote.  I would have words assault me like a lashing of a whip, caught unaware.  I would jump and the only way that they would stop the bashing inside my brain was to be set loose, fill my mouth, drip across my tongue, falling down on the page.  I wouldn't edit. These words were not mine to change. I would only put them on the page.  I shared my writing with Don Vish, a poet and friend.  He urged me to keep them.  To stop throwing them away.  You see, my family already had a poet.  I couldn't possibly be one.  I was merely neurotic.  I lived my life in scarcity.

Fast forward a few years, and I dared read them.  Out loud.  To another person.  This was again, a published poet.  I remember hearing the words get caught in my mouth.  They weren't mine to impart, you see.  I just was a conduit.

About this time, one person in my life who was occasionally on, asked if I was ever content.  At the time, I wasn't.  I was proud to serve as catalyst and conduit.  It wasn't that I was malcontent.  No, my state of being, although uncomfortable, was familiar.

Rodin: The Eternal Idol, 1889
my favourite statue
A regular visitor, my muse, and she was a rude bitch.  She would interrupt my meal, my sleep, and even sex.  :feigns blushing:  It was powerful.  I, a supplicant to my own written word.  Demanding.  Unreasonable.  Much of what inspired at the time was seeing misery I'd hidden for years under down of willful confusion and angry despair.

Time passed, and the anger turned to outward chaos and mess in my life.  My muse was active.  Words fell on screen, envelope, tossed on hands, cocktail napkins, whatever was within reach.

Gradually, the madness subsided.  I found peace.  It was then, that this familiar muse of misery found better accommodation.  I knocked on doors, I set my life up so she'd be comfortable.  I lay traps and triggers for me to scrape my knee and bitch... in hopes she'd visit me and give me a wordy high.

I longed for the promised days, unsure I dare name them.  I wanted something other than what I had, because what I had hurt.  But still, as I gained strength, my muse eluded me.

Her sisters, there were what?  Eight of her siblings?  Surely they must be hanging about.

Seems the happier I was, the more I wanted to get stoned and pelted by my old soliloquy.

first person
Boredom seeps into any dining table,
no matter the number in attendance
the first person must always be present.
/nam 16-08-2001

solitude in a crowd
I am never alone.
I have my own voice.
/nam 16-08-2001


common sense
Part of the charm
of one who disarms
is the very aim
to disclaim
any sense of commitment
/nam 01.2003


salt covenant
grappling with the undertow
  of yesteryears
filled enjoying extremes that
  stacatoed numb monotony.

I yearn to sense the subtleties
comprehend the nuances
beyond the wrath of damage, harm and hurt

the pull of sea at my feet and legs
draws me further out to miraged safety of horizon
to float, fatigued, above such dangers
and still the sirens call
drags me down ‘til salt scores my throat,
and lungs once filled with life sustaining air,

collapse

under the weight of so many pounds above me

so still I sit at sea floor

coughing up so many grains of currency for my soul
to patiently find enough from that which is so mixed.
/nam 11.2004


Once I named what I dared to want - husband, children, and here, now, I have it.  I realize that giving birth to character, to a thought, a glance, an act, that only exists in the mind of another because the muse empowered my pen, takes just as much as giving birth to our girls.  Greta Jo and Clara Lou are my joy.  I found the sister muses.  I miss the words that used to visit me, but realize the trade.  The words belong to them.  My creativity is expressed in the form of mothering and fostering who our sweet girls will choose to be.  So for now, instead of on pen to page, it's their mouths that form their words. It's their turn to listen and be inspired.

When my muse visits again, beyond the posts found here, I hope she comes densely packed, as I have designs to enjoy every luscious morpheme.  I will lash her for abandoning me and make her give me more.


*****
Written while those whom I love most sleep.  I had a soundtrack by Gotan Project.  And again, true to my personality... I just can't get enough.



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