You ask whether your verses are any good. You ask me. You have asked others before this. You send them to magazines. You compare them with other poems, and you are upset when certain editors reject your work. Now (since you have said you want my advice) I beg you to stop doing that sort of thing. You are looking outside, and that is what you should most avoid right now. No one can advise or help you – no one. There is only one thing you should do. Go into yourself.
__Rainer Maria Rilke
Letters To A Young Poet
Although I had read Rilke’s Letters, I’m not sure I grasped what he was saying, other than on some sort of surface level. Once I started doing the Morning Pages, I understood a bit better, but I was still a long way from real comprehension. Like most individuals, I was uneasy about searching my own inner being, afraid of what I might find, if I were to find anything at all. But, I had committed myself to these pages, and was determined to do them. I even think that back then, I thought I could simply fill those pages with words and somehow avoid that more personal contact (it is only the fool who begins the journey).
In the classic story of the Hero’s Journey, the hero finds, and meets, many different people and beings. The most important of these might be the one called The Companion. That’s the person, most times the hero’s approximate age, or younger, who becomes his stalwart friend, watching his back, willing to give his all, a source of humor and fun, as well as a sounding board and balancing checkpoint in the decision making process. Think Ron Weasly to Harry Potter’s hero role.
I have already said that I found a gold mine in those twenty year old morning pages. I also found a companion who played all of the above roles and more. The story of how I came to know her and the wealth of inspiration she brought to me and that solitary endeavor, may be found here: http://1sojournal.wordpress.com/2009/04/17/the-wild-child/