Saturday, February 27, 2016


There are times when you want more than anything to go off on the equivalent of a camping trip with you and your components parts. Mountains or country setting will do, seaside is even better, but at such times, you'll settle for your studio, possibly your bed, possibly the corner reading chair.

At such times, although music would not be unwelcome, it is not necessary, nor would a novel or story by one of your favorite writers be a requirement, although, once again, you would not mind, The key for dealing with such times is to experience the presence of as much of you as possible, to acknowledge the entire you, allowing it to seep through you.

There are also times when you want more than anything to be alone with the current project, the vision that has come to you, day or night, which you then attempt to attract toward you in order that you might experience it, merge with it, exchange ideas with it. 

Such times are memorable for the joys and insights inherent in the connection. This is among the best moments of being. These moments are celebrations of yourself and the equivalent of the paper gliders and model airplanes you constructed as a boy to send forth into the world.

There are also times when you enjoy the classroom sense of becoming lost in the subject you are teaching, finding an energy of enthusiasm for and connection with the material at hand. At such moments, you are indeed the product of all your composite selves, made somehow more accessible because of your regard for the subject. 

You are you, but you are also at the same time the subject. At such moments of the subject and the object becoming one, there is some possibility that you can pass along the techniques for storytelling you've worked so hard to achieve, page after page, deletion after deletion. Even more, you are aware of sharing the material, sending it forth as more than bundles of information, rather instead as clumps of dramatic data. This is sharing at its best.

Over the years, you've worked to bring speaking and writing together so that you speak as you write and write as you speak, Similarly, you try to capture that sense of sharing with a class, incorporating it into something you've written so that the reader catches more than mere information, in fact links the enthusiasm and devotion with the information. You are thus sharing more than yourself, you are offering and sharing yourself as transformed by your appreciation of the material.

And of course there are times when you wish to be out among your brother and sister humans, watching them, listening to them, taking in something you've often tended to take for granted, the sheer joy of celebrating the species of which you are apart, the river and ocean of which you are a drop.

There are times when you are the windshield, other times when you are the bug. The car is moving across a stretch of terrain or it is standing still. You are there, a part of it, impacting it or being squashed by it as you have impacted before and been squashed before. Being in any of these times, whether wanting the solace of yourself or the windshield of the witness, has no connection with passivity. All these things are difficult. You have spent years investigating the techniques by which you can become one with yourself during these moments.

When you can achieve any of these states, you experience a complex cocktail of feeling, layered with grief, nostalgia, elation, curiosity, thigh-slapping amazement. Times when you thought you were happy pale in comparison to your experience of these states.

You are often at work or thinking about work when these times come to you, beckoning to you as the Sirens did to Odysseus's sailors, making their way back home.

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