I am so grateful for these quite, warm mornings nestled in bed. Today I read Rainer Maria Rilke’s counseling on one’s pull to writing:
Go into yourself. Search for the reason that bids you write; find out whether it is spreading out its roots in the deepest places of your heart, acknowledge to yourself whether you would have to die if it were denied you to write.
From this, I ponder 2 questions:
1. Would I rather die if I was forbidden to write?
2. What is the reason that bids me to write?
#1. Well initially I think, “Of course I’d rather die!” Then I think, “Well that’s dramatic.” Death? End me now because I can no longer record the world as I see it and write of impossible things?! Would I have some days or weeks to spill all of my autobiographical insides and dreams before my literary demise? This isn’t an easy answer. I have questions. Could I create in other forms? Through paints and películas, song, dance, and charades? It seems some of these require precious words. And then I think of the sadness I would feel to not articulate the beauty of waving yellow-orange-red-brown leaves, the smell and contentment that overtakes my heart and mind while breathing in a natural setting. Watching blades of grass from the ground, being awestricken by life’s simple perfections… I suppose I could still experience these fulfilling pleasures, just not reflect of their impact through written word. It almost seems to me, that the circle of satisfaction would not quite be complete.
I do not write of such things daily and it also seems I could go in circles around this very question. Maybe I am not a genuine writer since I cannot definitively say, “Kill me now if you take my pen, MacBook, and iPhone!” Or maybe I’d just make do and utilize other sources of expression.
#2. What bids me to write? What has spread its roots to the deepest places of my heart? Why, love, beauty, and pain, of course. Everything I write is not so personal, yet most is. Characters I’ve created, stories I’ve told, sceneries I’ve described, all contain a bit of me because well, my experiences are what I know best. It is my humor and days for which I base these creations. It would be difficult to write and leave nothing of myself. Likely a good writing practice…
The roots that have hold of my heart are made of love. My desire to feel love, to give love, the trauma from its absence, and how and when we provide it to those we do not know.
I can be consumed by hopelessness for our kind. Look at politics as a done deal. A festering sore that will never heal because it continues to be picked at, only making it ooze and hurt. Disgusting, right? There is so much blight and inequality in our world and I feel hopeless by this administration and the adherence of so many to laws and “norms” that no longer serve our day. The sense of security these racist individuals must now feel to be emboldened with hate. The divisive, detached, distracted society we have coddled.
I guess this is why I write. To understand, reflect, and to feel hopeful once again. And to always remind, that just because the world’s pain makes the daily headlines, I should never discount or forget the change and intense love that beats on. And so I write.