Breaking out into a wild dance of joy. Thumping desks, mouth wide open in silent laughter. Hair in disarray, the theme is picked up, mutated and carried on. Dreams that won’t stop, reality that goes on. Waves wash a distant shore and the roar in a shell is ignored. Eyes meet across new media, seas of soup separate. Recognition is fear. Each search leads to shunya, but the quest is a path in itself. Why seek outside yourself? March on, and leaves on trees remain as in August.
The key to being happy is not looking forward.
This is not to say that you shouldn’t take time out at points, evaluate where you are and where you are going, and how that matches with what you want to happen. You should. Just not every time you make a small(er) decision or the sun sets, whichever comes first.
You’ve got to live in and enjoy the moment. That is never going to happen if you are constantly falling short of whatever impossible standard you’ve set yourself.
I love introspection. I enjoy talking about it too. But that is a black hole, and I feel that it is my responsibility to only flirt with the event horizon.
So these days I am in a state that I would have, two years ago, called superficial. I worry about the assigned reading, the assignments, the fact that I still haven’t finished a story I have been working on for two months now (forget the editing). But not too much. Instead I throw myself for one hour periods into classes, or research, or camphor-time, or planning-the-week-time during which I create a hard hours schedule that can’t be changed, and soft hour schedule that can, and for that one hour worry and think and love nothing else.
And the result?
I am told I look, sound, and appear more excited and generally happier. I don’t know if I am happier or not: that question prompts introspection and questions along the lines of what-is-happiness; this is not the hour for that.
So I’m declaring this experiment a success.
I remember a glorious time, beautiful, painstakingly wrought. It was not complete, but the foundations were laid and I knew where I was going with it. The story had begun. Then I lost it. After an appropriate period of mourning, I spent forever imagining it and telling everyone who would listen of its beauty. And it grew in the telling, until even in my mind, the pearls were turned to diamonds, the rough edges were smoothed away. Where there was age, I saw comfort. Where there were cracks, I saw character. Everywhere the work of the hammer was softened by memory to the delicate work of a GrandMaster’s chisel.
Today I pulled out that book. Flipped through the pages. Read some of those words that I thought were … just beyond description. And the pages crumbled beneath my fingers, and even my memory turned to dust. The words that remained were painstakingly put together, true. The attempt to be mysterious made them merely opaque. And none of it had the magic I wove into the memory of my beloved.
I found an old “manuscript” today. Needless to say, it makes my dead writing look good.