Mon, 16 Aug 2004


elusivity of the muse

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There are a million things I want to write about, things I need to put down into words simply to give my thoughts form. If I do not fix them down, pin them to cardboard like wriggling entymological specimens, they'll keep pestering me, flitting this way and that.

Some would counsel to leave well enough alone, and that would certainly be the easiest thing to do.

But I worry that my habit of ignoring my emotional reaction to events is leading to the calcification of my soul.

What worries me most is that I have not been able to write. Oh, the desire, the need to write rears it head not infrequently, and, dizzy with need, I will throw down ill-considered lines, as subtle as cinderblocks, and just as heavy and graceless, too.

I cannot make my words float anymore.

And this is where the self-doubt creeps in.

I can't help but wonder if I really ever had the knack for crafting the turn of phrase, of smoothing a thought into a lyric. Maybe it was all just a solipsistic conceit, and it's only now that I'm realizing the hollowness of my work.

Still, I must write, even if it is painful and forced.

I suppose I've always known that inspiration can only get you so far.

Saturday night I had this illusory sensation that the world was changing. This is where the words run out, and the closest thing I can turn to is the description of sci-fi motifs.

Like the raster line of a television set, a computer monitor, except three dimensionalized. The raster line of God. Photons, electrons, gravitons, focusing like a beam, refreshing every single bit of matter. Reaffirming its existence, lest it flicker and fade away, like the dying phosphor traces of a television screen turned off.

Say simply, that there was a glitch in the Matrix.

With my current obsession with quantum gravity, I can't help but think of it as an artistic representation of how Schroedinger's wavefunction collapses. As certain probabilities get ruled out, the nature of the world-at-large changes. Some waveforms disappear, and what we commonly call reality "crashes out" like precipitate crashing out from an overladen solution.

I want to say that, at last, I am free. That an episode of my life has finally and irrevocably come to an end. But I've said that before, a thousand times before, and I find myself dragged into loony-toon drama. So I say it with reservation.

I do fear that it will never end. That the repercussions of that deep, hopeless autumn will continue to reverberate and echo throughout all of space-time, and I will never be able to escape its ripples as long as I live.

It's like the surf, the flotsam and the jetsam of the quantum foam.

You ride the waves as best as you can, and sometimes you will wipe out.

Things really would just be easier if I became a monk.

So now I sit in the darkness, wakened from an involuntary nap spanning the waning daylight hours. I've sat and contemplated. I realize that, at least lately, I can only really do my deep thinking while I'm barreling down the highway at 80 mph, with my iPod providing the soundtrack for my ruminations. And I've had a lot of time to think. Nothing conclusive really. The only thing that really motivates me as of late is the avoidance of pain. Let sleeping dragons lie.

Maybe dragons really don't exist, but you still walk as if on eggshells.

In this stillness, letting the cool marine breeze waft over me, I ponder my solitude, wonder if this is the best I can achieve. If this is the most fertile state of mind to be in.

I begin to wonder if there is something masochistic about my need to write. How the words only seem to come easily when something inside me gets broken, crushed, or ruptured. In this state of dull, torpid contentment—I hesitate to use that word, but I will do so unapologetically from now on—the words come off my tongue like briars, having to be pulled off one by one, prickly with brambles.

Each word, which I felt I used to be able to freight with gravid meaning, each word, which was as precious as silver, as incisive and crystal clear as a diamond blade, is now nothing than its constituent pieces. It requires horrendous effort simply to string these little bits together, to fashion them with some meaning much less beauty. Little puffs of air is all I've got, and the wind just rips them apart. They dissipate in the void.

Is this just a function of where I'm at on my particular spiritual journey? Wandering forty days and forty nights through the bleak, hopeless desert? Is the promised land really just past that horizon?

Or should I just get used to this ascetic lifestyle of wandering around the desert, forever eschewing the fellowship of humanity, and the hope that the rain will soon come?

Decisions, decisions.

So mostly, I sit here worrying needlessly as to whether the next stage will suddenly creep up on me and possibly eat me, or whether that's all there is and there ain't no mo'. Am I to remain vigilant, waiting perhaps years and decades for something that I am losing faith in? Or do I just give in to the torpor, the ennui of existentialism? That this is all there is, and anything else is illusion and possibly lunacy.

I truly have very little faith these days. That in itself doesn't really bother me, but I kind of wonder if there will be horrific long-term sequelae for getting too used to not caring.

22:41:31 16 Aug 2004 > /soul > permalink > 0 comments


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