I’ve been working on a manuscript for several weeks. The story behind my experience with those “15 minutes” of fame that altered my entire existence. Attempting to fill three or four pages a day. It’s coming a long quite well, but I hit a snag this morning. Not a major one, but enough to make me realize it’s time to take a break and just breathe for a few moments. So decided to come here instead, and fill this page.
The photograph is one I took in my sister’s backyard several years ago. A frog, taking a siesta on a hammock tied between two ceramic mushrooms. Don’t have a clue who actually made the arrangement, but it makes me grin whenever I pull up my files and see him there, taking a breather.
I very seldom know exactly what I’m going to write about when I come here. And this morning, all I knew was that I needed a time out. All I had was the title of this article and went looking through my files to see if I could find some sort of appropriate image. Mr. Froggy seemed an excellent choice. If I had a real backyard, and a hammock, that’s exactly where I’d be, if I owned the physical ability to climb inside such a contraption without harming myself for the rest of whatever time I might have left.
So, now I’m here grinning for two reasons. Mr. Froggy is the first one. The second one is that it was probably important to walk away from that other writing. Didn’t realize, when I started it, that it would turn into a biographical thingie that would take me on a roller coaster ride of emotional impact, the likes of which I haven’t experienced in years. And, just for the record: I hate roller coaster rides. All that speed, the ups and downs, the curves and only that narrow and remarkably thin metal bar to hang to as one races through space with a seemingly out of control precision meant only to make one wet ones pants? No. Thank You. Would far rather continue in my slow, sometimes halting manner.
Which brings me back to that other manuscript. I have no intention of quitting. It is far too important to me to think in that fashion. I have a good solid reason for writing it and a premise that is close and dear to my heart. But, I also know that the next part of the story is probably the most important one for me personally. I need the space and time to just settle down so that I can do it justice. And I will do just that.
It might sound a bit crazy to stop writing by writing about something else. But, I actually started writing in order to see what the hell I was thinking, and if my thoughts really made any kind of sense at all. There were some questions about that, mostly my own. So writing has come to mean several things to me. It is a means of slowing down my thoughts and the emotions that often accompany the words I choose. I write both poetry and prose, and far more poetry than prose. This current manuscript is prose, so my desire is to be clear and yet precise.
As I mentioned above, the next part of the story is perhaps the most important one to me personally. I need to be clear and not rush in and miss the most important details. So, I am deliberately slowing myself down, spending time just breathing. And, for me, that means writing. Writing is a creative process. The original meaning of the word create, was to breathe life into. We breathe in and are inspired. We exhale and release that inspiration. And writing out that statement has allowed me to do just that. Slow down my breathing. Slow down my own emotional response. The words themselves become my hammock, and I can rest easy inside their comforting support.
Mr. Froggy has nothing on me. But, I will gratefully thank him for the inspiration.