My fingers, my hand muscle, once so easy to scribe words on lines, now must be forced to push forward. The habit of writing is meditative; it is ritualistic; and yet broken. By me. I have broken the habit of writing. I have killed the relationship of paper, pen, and my mind. Each one now single, lonely, wandering pages of books, thinking up ways to bring things back to the way they were.
What was “the way they were?” When were you a person with strength and regiment? It must have existed in the past. It’s much like losing a watch, or your keys, and rewalking your steps till you stumble over what has fallen away from you. Can you find your craft in the same manner? Can I trinkle back to months prior, before all creativity was sucked from my insides and outsides?
I want to skip all that. Fire the journal – flame it high till it is smoke and dust and the remnants of my lack of talent cannot leech to my bedroom floor where this journal lives. A few weeks ago I traveled to the Boundary Waters. The forest greened our eyes and we canoed as far as the green would take us. And then it greyed. There had been a fire, stretching miles and miles. Post-apocalyptic almost. Turkey vultures hung from branches, waiting for prey below, not knowing there would be no prey for a very long time. And the burn, it frightened me, it made me feel so wintered, which is to say, so dead. And yet, I could think forward, fifty years, to fallen buds treeing first softly, bush-like, and then tall and skinny and old. And the fire would not be remembered. And the turkey vultures would wing high above, dive low to find food, to find life.
So this is how I must find my writing. Going back, restepping the same steps – I have tried this, tried sifting through boxes, only to rebox it up, messier than before. And now, it must burn, as Lake Insula, as the turkeys, as the North.