Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Refraction

It's hard to come back from it, the edge of whatever your hope once was, to overcome the impetus that made you lose your footing and dangle from precipices to begin with. Harder still because you put yourself there, in some misguided, self-affirmative step toward individuation. Grimacing through the pain of it all, your mantra: all for the best, all for the best. Words ring empty--if at all--when vocalized, but still, must be repeated for continuity's sake, must be repeated ad infinitum, must be repeated until you start to believe it. You stay active in body and mind, so the totality of you will persevere, past bumps in the road and rough patches and stormy seas and a thousand other cliches. Slowly, you claw your way back, because you want to or because you have to. You seek redefinition of what you'd perceived, and recontextualize yourself within the new construct. Although you've swept them up before, shards of shattered hopes remain, insidious, piercing your bare feet just when you thought you'd found them all. But you're tough. Callused, in protection from renegade vestiges of something you thought was possible. In daily life, you cultivate steeliness, deny your warmth and flexibility. You're still you, craving the clamor of contact, the intensity of perceived or actual intimacy. But it's safer here. There's no room for interpretation in metals and no heartbreak in stone. It's only temporary. You know it is. As if there were an expiration date on sadness. You feel it in the air like pollen, an irritant that heralds the spring thaw. You rotate, earthlike, on your axis, yet not feeling like the world does or should revolve around you. But the motion is constant, and constitutes progress. There are others now, refracting prismatically, sometimes dazzlingly shiny. Shielding your eyes, you wonder if you'll ever see inside, and if the interior is as opulent as the exterior seems. But at least it's something new to look at.

9 comments:

Chutzpah said...

AWESOME!!!

annabel lee said...

From the song that's been in my head for the last few days ("Full Monty" original cast recording):

When evening falls, and the air gets colder
When shadows cover the road I am following
Will I be alone, there in the darkness?
No, not alone, not alone and I'll never be
Never alone: you're walking, you're walking with me.

hap said...

So eloquent, so true. Jumping off the ledge might hurt, the shards might linger in your bare feet (heart) for a while, but you heal, and learn, and eventually stepping up to the edge again seems doable, even if it's still scary.

Needsabetterjob said...

I do admire that your skill in putting together prose is very good indeed, but I would love to see a more inspirational and positive message from this. That this is an authentic composite of where you are at is OK, but like the train that comes on time, it doesn't matter that much if you've been waiting awhile already.

I suffer from a similar predicament as a writer, that I have allowed the negative circumstances of my world to affect my entire thought process, so what comes out is more of a rant, a whine, a ahem kvetch.

Where I would like to join forces w/ others and produce optimism and a positive light.

Can this happen, tha is, can I write on the level of the actor who is playing a successful role, or is a writer limited by anything?

Esther said...

Needsa, I'm not sure I understand your train metaphor. This is not meant to be a proscriptive post; it was a portrait of my internal life, which is not meant to be anything other than what it is.

As to your question about writers, I think every writer operates under different principles. I don't know what you can and cannot write, or how you can or cannot write. I know that for me, right now, here, this is how I write.

Gatsby said...

Beautiful Esther. I particularly liked "refracting prismatically". I've never heard prism used as an adverb.
I'm sure that every time you jump and fall you'll find your feet eventually.
Eventuall you'll get higher than when you started.

Lyss said...

Love your wording

The First Date Chick said...

Beautiful.

Shoshana said...

You are an amazing writer.