Worked for a solid month, three to eight hours a day, every day before I wrote the right sentence. I’m not exaggerating. I was starting to panic near the end. But then the door opened, and the story that made sense occurred to me (while walking Doe in the park). It came to me piece meal, one bit leading to the next, and now all I have to do is write it, which I have been doing.
I had the sense that if I kept trying, kept writing, trying different things, it would break open, the way it does. I have a lot of experience with it happening in my songwriting. You know when you haven’t hit the spot with a lyric, or melody. There’s a sense that if you can just get a little deeper, or not deeper, but more true, you can do something that takes your song to the next level.
Interesting how it’s all the same. Creativity, in whatever form. Beauty exists beyond us, and we access it through art, as artists, and as viewers/listeners/readers. It exists beyond us, and as artists, we have to find a way to let it come to us, because it can’t be forced. On the other hand, it won’t come if I’m not not completely focused and prepared (by working). Mysterious process.
Whenever I write anything like this, I read it back later and think I’ve sounded pretentious, but I only want to describe it because it amazes me, and I don’t claim to know more about it than my personal experience with having the door open, and that’s when it feels like the song or story, or whatever comes through me, more than from me.
Lost a friend from high school this week, and because of Facebook, I was immediately connected to the whole group of friends I ran with then. We shared our sadness, and memories, and it’s been quite moving. I don’t know why it amazes me that actual connections, relationships, were made. My sense is always that I am on the periphery of everything. It was a revelation, as I searched for the photo album full of the group of us as teenagers, to feel the love I have for these former-friends of mine.
I was thinking about how I have probably mistaken my feeling of separateness as something unique when, in fact, human beings feel this way. We long to connect, and at the same time, fear a loss of individuality. I think it must be in our DNA, and tied to survival of the species.
I once saw a Buddhist therapist (for a year or so), who told me that my romantic pain was actually the pain of having been separated from every other human being at birth. He thought in another realm we were all one. I’ve always viewed spiritual talk as magical thinking. I’ve been dismissive, but more and more, I can see the connection between us is magical, and very real.