Tuesday, February 02, 2010

"Empty of Inspiration"

. . . if the emotions are sometimes so strong that one works without knowing one works, when the strokes come with a continuity and a coherence like words in a speech or a letter, then one must remember that it has not always been so, and that in a time to come there will again be hard days, empty of inspiration.  ~Vincent Van Gogh, 1888

 I am casting about, hoping for something to moor me, but I suspect that I just need to resign myself to feeling what I feel without the need to transform it.  Somehow, it seems like that process--of making art from pain--is dishonest to the emotions I am moving through. 

There is no shortcut to living.

If there is no story compelling my attention right now, it is probably because I must pay attention to something else. 

I am working on the small, concrete things that make up a day.  Putting away the dishes, folding laundry, sitting with my son and helping him with homework, listening to beautiful music, walking the dog.  Staying in the moment, not trying to push my fear and sadness aside, but not letting them drown me either. 

And I am still creating.  But it is art without expectations.  Ceramics class continues to be a place of solace for me.  The writing seems confined to these blog posts, which are more in the way of journaling, and the poetry challenges posted at Wild Poetry Forum.  These are less threatening expressions of self, because they are simply for me the equivalent of a musician's scales.

This is not 'writer's block,' but an acknowledgment of what Van Gogh understood.  There are productive times and fallow times. 

Right now, I need to be emotionally available for my parents, to be honest to the feelings their shaky heath stirs in me, to accept their frailty and their mortality.  

To do otherwise, feels dishonest and disrespectful.

So bear with me as I write these posts about family, life, and death.  That is where I am right now, and I have always striven to be honest here.

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