Friday, March 12, 2010

Drafting in Knots: No Easy Breathing



53ยบ ~ cloudy with a few bits of sun & blue

Bah humbug! No new draft to speak of after two hours worth of work. ARGH!

I thought today would be one of those days where a draft or at least a solid line would appear as easy as breathing...not so. I managed to corral my wild thoughts of grading that needed to be done and other work related tasks. I turned a blind eye to the kitchen and the floors in need to cleaning. I took deep, calming breaths and opened up a book to slither into the world of words. Oh, and I was especially excited because I got a new office chair, which I was sure would make me happy. It's a kneeling chair. I had one years ago and can't remember why I switched to a regular chair. In any case, I've been having trouble with my lower back and since I use a kitchen table for a desk and I'm a bit short, I could never get myself raised high enough for comfortable typing. This chair is the answer. Apparently, it makes my body happy but does nothing for my poetic inspiration.

I drank my coffee and read. I scribbled down a possible line, but it felt off somehow...like a piece of bad meat. I read some more. I scribbled some more. I forced myself to type some of the "bad meat" lines into the computer in the hopes something, somewhere would save them. Frustration city. I ate some chips and read, and then I wrote some lines about tulips and salt. I thought I was on to something, but then I remembered that salt is not so good for flowers. I ate some candy. Nothing. I pulled out my inspiration cards and forced some lines about one of those. Again the stench of rotten meat. I never got to that moment where a line sang out to me (coalesced is another word I like to use).

Even these sentences I'm typing now are like composing in sludge and mud. The part of my brain responsible for words and syntax feels broken, rusty, pained. However, I do believe that art requires work, which is probably why I labored for so long this morning, all the while knowing today was doomed to disappoint.

This is Week 9 of the semester, and that means I've successfully drafted a poem in seven of those nine weeks. Not bad all things considering, but I can't help feeling bummed about a week without a draft when I'm healthy and have the time to work.

6 comments:

joehebden said...

A happy body might release poetic inspiration....

Sandy Longhorn said...

J. Usually so...but sadly not today. Thanks for stopping by!

Kells said...

. It's really helped my lower back. I've had issues since I was a teenager and it's amazing to me not to get up from a chair and not ache in my back. Plus, my shoulders have really benefitted.

Sandy Longhorn said...

I can already feel the difference, and it only arrived on Wednesday!

Only trouble...the cats hate it...no way to sit on my lap.

Jehanne Dubrow said...

Oh, Sandy. I hope you feel better soon (both back and writing-brain!).
Hugs.

Sandy Longhorn said...

J. Thanks for the good wishes!