I’ve been feeling off for quite a while lately. Nebulous. Fragmented. Dissolved. Dwindling. Disassembled. I cannot harness the energy to pull myself into a composite, a whole, a grounded being. And so I faded. Floundered. Drifted. Do I feel any better today? Well, it’s taking a tremendous amount of energy to force these words down. I’m not all the way there yet. But in writing this, I am putting forth an effort to bring something to completion–unlike myself, unlike my life, unlike this definitonless quasi-existence I seem to have found myself in. A sort of limbo, perhaps.
I have a lot to get done today. At least, I feel as though I do. Certainly a fair amount of writing–and I shall warn you now that much writing will be underway in the near future, but more on that later. There’s another aspect of writing I want to focus on, at present. I wrote a poem over the summer called Blacksmith, and the title of this post comes from the last line of said poem. I’ve many times mentioned (and probably complained–or shall I say lamented?) the difficulty I find in speaking. It takes a sort of energy that I usually don’t have, and so I tend to be a bit of a hermit, a recluse, or simply just quiet. I can do great one-on-one conversations, face to face. If there are three people, I say about 25% of what I would say one-on-one. Groups of four or more, and I generally just stop talking–I can’t contribute to the conversation and track where it’s going at the same time. Anyway, why all this? Well. I performed Blacksmith as a spoken word poem this past Thursday.
I griped a good deal about it, complaining that my friends had somehow twisted my arm into getting me to do this. I grumbled and muttered and groaned. It’s generally what I do when I end up doing something I know I need to–and really want to, deep down–but never actually get done unless I’ve got friends who love me enough to drag me, kicking and pouting, into it. Sometimes I need a good shove…or kick in the ass. But I did it. Honestly, I was never nervous about it until 30 seconds before I went on stage. And then there was no reason to be because these were my words; this was my voice. I could believe what I haven’t been able to really grasp lately, due to my disembodied state. I could ground myself in old truths, in knowledge I’d discovered deep within my own soul. You go deep enough, dark enough, and through the other side you see everything with a strange and inexplicable beauty. Hope is irrational.
After the performance, I did a bit of noise-making. Not anywhere near the audience, of course, and not of the coherent type either. I have a habit of making noises when I have a bit of excess energy–although my roommates usually have to ask if it’s of the benevolent or angsty variety. Mostly, it’s just a strangeness I don’t know what to do with, so I try to force it out. Much like the pain, the joys, the confusions of life. I distance myself from pulling things into coherence–even a messy one–until I think I have the strength to wrestle through it. Sometimes, you have to wrestle through even the good things. How can you not, when you have received immeasurably more than you know you could ever earn or deserve? But for all the distance and every shortcoming, for all the fragments, every disassembled and disembodied part and piece, there is grace.
I can’t say where I am now, save a new place than I was before. Better? Perhaps. But I chose to write new in that first sentence rather than better. Why? Well…better by whose standards? Mine? The world’s? Religion’s? Psychology’s? Nothing seems to fit as a standard of measure. The simplicity of it is this: I’ve never lived today before. I was where I was yesterday, last week, this past year–I was in those places because I needed them to get to here, to now. I will see much that distresses and delights me. I will face more sorrows and more serenity. But I will be where I need to be then, and I will face them as the person I am becoming, the person I already am. I’ve seen glimpses of her, and I must say–she is strong, and her embers burn the most beautiful colors at night.