“I wanted a perfect ending. Now I’ve learned, the hard way, that some poems don’t rhyme, and some stories don’t have a clear beginning, middle, and end. Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment, and making the best of it, without knowing what’s going to happen next.
Delicious Ambiguity.” – Gilda Radner
I fell last week. I was walking in my neighborhood after dark, tripped on the curb, and went straight down on an unwelcoming sidewalk, bracing the fall with elbows, wrists, and knees — things not padded for such tumbles. It’s curious how many fears can fit in that split second between the beginning of the fall and when I actually hit the concrete.
Shook up and scratched up, I was reminded that I don’t bounce. Disappointing. The aftermath wasn’t too bad though, plus it gave me an additional reason to get a massage.
For me, the massage table is an ideal location to relax into the world of ideas while captive to a nurturing person kneading areas of my body where inspiration gets stuck in the tightness of stress.
During sixty minutes of a massage high that had me staring at the carpet through the head-hole, I sank into an Alice in Wonderful meets Goldilocks meets Raiders of the Lost Ark daydream. I was in the land of Non-sequitur — combinations of unrelated subjects, most from childhood, conspiring together to bring home the fact that sometimes ideas DON’T always go one particular place.
Much of writing remains in a notebook, drawings don’t always meet expectations – some make us squirm. Music is often only heard by the composer, creative work can sink into the quicksand of oblivion.
This truth comes with the territory of creativity and in order to stay devoted to all the wonders of the process, we need to tolerate work that seemingly doesn’t go anywhere – but is in a face filled with fringe benefits – like practice with non-attachment, resilience, and patience. The alternative is to avoid, quit, and procrastinate, and these choices are often more painful than the requisite frustrations that are natural to creating.
The trick is to allow the frustrations, framing them as necessary. And then just enjoy the ride: the amusements, the ability to skirt reality, the genesis of absurdity, poetry, philosophy, metaphor; the freeing of lurking opinions, ponderings, puns, and profundities; the ability to parade the power of creation even if it’s just for ourselves. If any of it brings us amusement, that in and of itself can be a reward.
“We may have no idea where the process will take us, but if we relax and take the first small zag, modify it along the way according to our instincts – something we like might may come out of it … Or not. “
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