Is there a danger to weaving words to accompany half-formed thoughts? Is there potential for something to slip through the holes in the net where the edges don’t meet, and the words soldier on regardless, trying to crochet their way valiantly around the nothingness? Everything is something (maybe) but time is money and money is time and I sometimes wonder which it matters more to waste.
Regardless, the words keep wending onwards, flitting through my mind with the alacrity of shadows leaping up a vertical surface, bird-shaped yet distorted by the planes of obstacles in their path. This, perhaps, is one of those posts which should give pause – one which I may later regret or wish I had done differently. The kind of sharing of rolling thoughts perhaps better contained within the drafts folder I never use, or swept into the corners of my brain to gather dust and wither through lack of attention. The kind of writing which causes more discriminating writers to quaver before hitting ‘publish’, agonising over whether or not it will give credence to their claim to the title ‘Writer’, or undermine it.
In the ways traditionally used to measure ‘Writer’ness, I’m credenced to the hilt. Nothing I write here will undo the facts of past writings, and whilst it’s tempting to rest on the laurels of achievement, nothing I write here will undo the complicit lack of self-belief in my status as ‘Writer’, nor my should-be-mutually-exclusive-but-isn’t innate arrogance in my own ability.
Tell me I’m wrong?
There is leeway in artistic licence (which, I read tonight, is no excuse for an abominable surfeit of ignorance, rather something which should be played with, for fun, when one is appraised of all the facts) and the knowledge that everything’s subjective, and one person’s favourite is another’s worst nightmare. One only needs to see the much-vocalised black/white divides in opinion over books publicised as anything but…
This isn’t where I was going.
I wanted to take you to a few of the places my mind’s been this week, which weren’t big enough places to stand alone, but small thoughts – snippets, if you will – of thinks which may or may not have greater importance than that to which I attribute them…but equally might remain small. Yet small can be mighty, as Persil adverts and ants so often serve to remind.
I read somewhere that it’s no good to go out and try to make friends. That to build successful relationships you need to go out and BE one. In the spirit of which, I feel I’ve possibly made new friends and somewhere along the way managed to wayside the old, especially in the Blogosphere. Things change, I know, and times and people and priorities are all always in flux, and in the end it’s what’s maintained by both parties that counts. One-sided relationships rarely bring joy, and perhaps this is something I should factor into that other oft-quoted adage, about loving people and letting them go (if they’re for you, they’ll come back of their own accord). That, or ‘flogging a dead horse’, which whilst base, is remarkably apt.
This still isn’t it. Not *it* it…
Holding books in my hands, with my name on the cover, another collaboration, a beautiful, tangible truth of poetry and effort on the part of my 1000mile heart…that was beautiful and soul-piercingly sweet, and also achingly nothing, because once more (in spite of my arrogance and the forgiving nature of poetry) I still feel I’m not there yet. And where, precisely, is there? No idea. Only that I’m not at it, and perhaps that’s cause to keep striving.
Poetry, though, and its forgiving nature, can cover all manner of sins and intentions and things best left unsaid but which must *must* somehow be expressed or else they’ll rupture the soul trying to hold onto them. Admittedly not all poems, though there are those which begin in the brain and just beg to be written for the sheer writing of them. Those others, though – the ones imbued with heart-blood and visceral need – can be allocated clean space and given breath as the letters build patterns build words, drumming rhythms where given and rhymes which might not, taking portions of soul and slices of time, secreting them in plain sight for all to see through dark glass and bright light, never showing their whole truth, whilst simultaneously dazzling with verity.
Love is a stranger in an open car; to tempt you in and drive you far away…
Would you consider yourself driver or driven? Faux or ungiven? Wholly committed or never-quite-fit-ed, or something else entirely?
But good, and something I think can win battles and battles and battles, if not the whole war, definitively. I love the concept of #LoveWins, and I love the idea that people doing small things, with love, can one-at-a-time begin to tip the balance in its favour. I’m not obtuse – I know it’s an uphill battle and one which persists, but so too does love persist, and persisting, loving persistently and giving it our very best shot, we can continue to know that every shove we add to the boulder takes it onwards and upwards, and with more of us ever committed to shoving, perhaps the crest may one day be in sight, if never truly achievable in this life.
Especially as, with stunning forgetfulness, so many of us remain the centres of our own worlds (I know I do, most of the time). I’m reminded of an essay or an aside, I think by Lewis Thomas (a relation by choice, ish) whereupon he placed the tip of his pencil to the page, and sat, absorbed, calculating what it would take to make that point of contact the very centre of the universe, and how the orbits of the planets and stars must swing off their axes and follow new routes to manifest the new middle.
Aren’t we always doing that, in a way? Railing (though carelessly) against a world which thwarts us by not putting us at its centre. We struggle to accommodate the mind-boggle of an existence where the planets are constantly spinning off their arcs, no longer concentric, as they battle to circle ever-changing points of contact, of selves not yet aware of their true place – crawling on the surface of a relatively miniscule dot, a green and blue miracle amidst the vastness of Everything – oftenest leaving naught but a shadow climbing across the planes.
The bird whose shadow climbed the fence and set me thinking, after a flash in my peripheral alerted me to its presence, had fellows or brethren a day later, in a similar skyspace, who flew in an almost-perfect circle across the blue overhead. The circle elipsed into the shape of a disgusted mouth, as I watched, and was lost to view in the treetops, casting its sneer across the pathway of other eyes. I thought along a pathway of thinks I’ve thought before, and felt the simultaneous draw to the idea of being a bird – of that freedom of flight and aerobatic ability, and distaste for the outsidiness and all-weatheriness and predicament of being so low in the chain of beings.
All in all, on the whole, I’d rather be able to ponder the complexities of birds and universes and poetries, even if I make little sense and leave this place as off-kilter and wordy as I arrived. But having arrived, having written, having shared the somethings and nothings of my mind and admitted to things which perhaps I should not have, whilst never outright acknowledging what they are…is a privilege I rather appreciate.
In the meantime, amongst the somethings and nothings, lies love. And the centre of the universe.