Monday, May 18, 2015

Looking for the Way Home after Being out among the Stars

NASA has sent the Cassini Mission to Saturn.  You send short stories out as submissions to journals.  Home Again Pet Rescuers sends out a Missing Cat poster with a picture of your cat, Goldfarb, poised and stoic on the bed he has been away from for over a month.  

Last time you looked, there were eleven spam messages in your spam file, offering you inducements ranging from eager Russian brides to medical enhancements that would accrue to the benefits of these Russian ladies, were you to enter the precarious equations suggested.

Writers who have invested time and dreams in the preparation of a manuscript of a novel or story or essay often send them to you before sending them to literary agents or editors or publishers, hiring you to remove any traces or hints of unnecessary presences that will distract from the purpose of the novel or story or essay.

You subscribe to reviews and journals which arrive, bearing the news of books, plays, exhibitions, and forums, some of them related to subjects you did not know existed.  Pen in hand, you go through these publications, marking the books and catalogues you wish to order.  These, too, will arrive in the mail.

In a thought provoking and delightful way, not much has changed since the days of the ancient ones, moving about on foot or raft or some other water borne conveyance, trading, foraging, in constant search of things beyond immediate reach.  

At times in your early boyhood, you'd invent the conceit of going to a library in order to consult with some elder, meaning anything from a Greek philosopher to one of the wandering storytellers lumped together under the name of Homer,  From these consultations, you'd retain some lore or memory of story or poem, perhaps even some fact which might well be useful in current time.

You were then and are now a tiny point of light in a vast space of explorations and radiations, wondering when and if times would come when you would do more than seek consultation, in fact provide something to share with others who sought information or understanding or even experience.

At times, you feel dizzy from such awareness as you have from all these other points of light, reaching out, sending, converting information to other forms, being a part of a vastness that so beggars the imagination that you find yourself having to stop from time to time to make notes of the things you wish to remember, other things these new facts relate to and, by no means least, directions for finding your way back home.

Today, you were looking at paragraphs written by another writer, a well-traveled scholar, who'd managed to get an array of facts down on the page, so buoyed up by attempts to present clarity that she'd lost her way back home.  

Working away with pen in hand, looking to be sure you grasped this writer' purpose, you were caused to think of your late pal Sally, a thirty-pound herd dog, who knew the way home and would settle for nothing less.

Much later in the day, while working on your own materials, you thought about Goldfarb, still being a lost cat poster, you thought about Sally, and thanked her memory for the awareness of the need to find your way home after any venture outward, looking at the skies.

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