Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Shedding light on difficulty

(and scraping the barrel for a relevant photo)

It’s proving such a struggle to try and post something here every day this November that my chief motivation has become defiance of its very difficulty. Why so hard? Why do my simplest words go limp and numb, with a single sentence sometimes needing endless revisions? I read a short poem – The Past is the Present by Marianne Moore on wood s lot (also here). The tone, the multiple allusions, the line-lengths and the rhythm: so small, deep, satisfying is a poem, such a complex dance with words both studied and abandoned. A poem, or a paragraph of crafted writing, may be a small thing but need quite a lot of space. The image comes of my mind stuffed and swollen, throbbing with facts and worries and ‘to do’s’. Thoughts and feelings jammed together in a tight, constricted exit, waiting, tiring, with no food, no light. Oh. Magnanimously granting them a daily slot for speech, I guess, is not enough! I shall keep trying: breathe, let in some light and space, but may have to stop and let my mind rest until the swelling goes down.

8 comments:

Lucy said...

I don't know why we feel the need to keep it up having committed ourselves, there's no real obligation except to ourselves I suppose.

I very much appreciate what you have been posting here, and even if you can only do photos sometimes it will still be well worth coming here, but don't bully yourself with it, give it a break if you need to.

Jean said...

Lucy, thanks. I'm really enjoying reading you and the Phoenix and Leslee and others every day in November. But, well, yes, my own daily blogging is a big deal only to me! I see it as a commitment to myself to make a little bit of space every day for something that isn't work.

earlybird said...

I like the image of you resting your mind until the "swelling goes down'.

I too have been enjoying your regular posts this month. Even if I don't always comment that I've been here. Your photographs often say as much/more than words.

liliannattel said...

Beautiful photo. I'm thinking of an interview with an elderly accomplished writer who said the one thing she wished is that she'd realized younger that lying around idly day dreaming is a good thing to do.

Beth said...

Yes. I admire your commitment to try to post each day this month, Jean. Didn't do it myself this year, obviously, but I'm glad to know you and a few others are here.

Jennifer said...

I made the same commitment, and managed to blow it on the second day. But at least it has gotten me thinking about writing every day again, even if I don't actually put pen to paper. Or fingers to keyboard.

Sometimes that's enough.

Vivien said...

I value your posts - you always have something to say which strikes a chord. Your photos are good and original too.

Daydream Believer said...

I should have been following you this month. How strange it is that once something becomes a commitment and less spontaneous in motivation, how difficult it becomes. I decided a post a day was too much (alongside the writing course I am doing). But yours seem fresh every day. And your images, both photographic and literal are a joy.

Now I shall come back and look at them all.