hiding the only light I have

It’s late morning here, and I’m sitting here drinking coffee and wondering where this day will take me. There is so much cleaning that needs done here, but what I want to do is go out for a drive, feel the wind pushing my hair back, maybe go up to the overlook and sit on the rock up there and look out across the fields below.

At the same time, I want to spend the day devouring poetry, dipping into Sylvia Plath’s journals, scouring my thesaurus for new words and feeding my muse. It’s been too long since I’ve fed her, too long since I’ve soaked up words that inspire me to write. I am reminded of Bukowski’s “So You Want To Be A Writer”, and I’m a little angry at him for what he says in that poem. What if the words don’t come bursting out of me? What if I have to struggle and bleed them out? Like Ernest Hemingway said, “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.”

So, here I am. I’m faced with the idea of sitting down and bleeding it all out. Indeed, writing has often felt that way to me. It’s so personal. I give so much of myself. What do I get in return? Does it matter? Do I dare write out the stories that are inside me? Do I dare expose myself in that way?

Poetry. It’s a way to take all the messy details of my life and lie them out in rows, a way to make order and (sometimes) meaning out of chaos. Maybe today will be the day I try to untangle the mess. Maybe today will be the day I start again, the day the poetry comes slowly bleeding out of me again. Would today be too soon? Am I ready? It scares me to open up and share myself. At the same time, it scares me to hide away the only light I have.

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