Tuesday, June 2, 2009

I’m on my Pooh Spot

Thinking, thinking, thinking…

I awoke today in a thinking mood. I usually am mulling several thoughts at once, anyway, but there is a certain languid, reflective quality to the thoughts today that usually come with a low pressure system, cloudy days and rain. However, the sun is shining brightly, so I don’t know what to make of this besides more lack of sleep.

I’ve always leaned more toward melancholia as my typical personality, and I don’t think of it as a bad thing at all. I think it’s important to mull and to wonder and wander in thoughts. It’s only beneficial to consider some of the heavier topics most people seem to do their best to avoid. It doesn’t keep me from smiling, make me depressed or anything, it’s just a simple fact of who I am.

Of course I used to obsess over why I did this or was like this - was I depressed? And largely, outside of particularly difficult phases of my life, I’m not depressed, just comfortable in being alone and musing over nothing or everything as the case may be. I think it’s what makes me a writer. I don’t just live life, I have to consider it. And reconsider it again. I wish I could remember who said this, but some writer wrote - once again, I paraphrase here, “Most people live once, but a writer lives twice, once while living the moment, and again when writing it.”

I think a writer lives a moment over and over, and adds it to repertoire in order to write it later. I think we also are in a moment as it happens and outside watching it at the same time. We don’t write a scene, we know why it has to be present in the book. We don’t just paint a pretty picture in a poem, there is a reason behind William Carlos William’s white chickens and red wheel barrel. Everything in the world is dependent upon them. Those are some powerful chickens! Or maybe it’s just WCW and his thoughts. I’ve found that the whole world can change because I watch a blade of grass twitching.

It may sound dramatic, but I think (there I go again) that if we don’t consider everything around us that is influencing us in any given moment we are not truly alive. I’ve been there, too, when day after day blends into each other as I walk through a haze of survival mode, not seeing the stars, sun, the change in color of season after season, the minute tick of time racing past, and me, oblivious to it all.

But it’s generally short lived. Then I’m back to feeling my toes, bare and bent back under my feet on the floor, sunlight streaking through the window, shining, warming my right side, the green framed in the window before me, undulating in the breeze, wondering, what does the baby dream right now, what are the boys doing in school at this moment. Is the sunlight making their mind wander from lessons, the way it is distracting me from my own thoughts? What will the world be when humanity is gone, what is on the other side of death? That low ache in my back is coming into focus, time to sit up straighter again, and a million to dos on the list for the day, what it means to do or not do them, and will the family survive if I wait another day on the laundry…

Thinking is not just an intellectual exercise either, it always has an emotional context and right now that emotional context is living and breathing, sitting in my chair typing away with me. Today the thinking is a little melancholy, but I celebrate melancholy as how I find meaning in my life and am able to share it with others. I am after all, a writer. I can’t keep this to myself.


  1. yes my dear, you are a writer indeed. enjoy your melancholy mood. however...have you ever stopped to think that your "Pooh spot" could be a happy place? i'm a big fan of winnie. :-)

  2. oh it is a happy place, but the personality type is known as melancholia. the thoughts are of a wistful dreamy nature, but often on dark topics like death. it just doesn't look as dark to me as it does to some.

  3. I'm so glad to see I'm not the only one! Gosh, Cathy, you could have been writing about me in this post.

    Creative minds think alike in so many ways. Literally.

  4. i think it's a writerly way of life.

  5. Yes, it's always these particularly penetrating moments that can also be maddeningly allusive, the most abundant, the most melancholy. It's difficult to describe it. I really like the idea of tides, washing and carrying away creativity and connection to what is around us.

    The time when I'm most in tune with - (for lack of a better word) - the universe, is also when I'm the saddest, or intensely pondering existence. It's also the time when I am the MOST creative and prolific. But sometimes that manifests only in my head, which can be VERY frustrating. And then, when it manages to finally show itself on paper, I can breath a sigh of relief that I got it out, and that I was able to communicate it in a somewhat lucid fashion (I hope).

    Writing is a trip, isn't it? I'm still not sure how it works. :-) xoxo

  6. Exactly! that only in my head part is a kicker. i know i come off rather bluntly when i speak or when i write in the blog or elsewhere, like emails, but in my head, it's all fluid and descriptive. it just rarely seems to come out that way...the pretty words get stuck somewhere before my hands.


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