Saturday, May 29, 2010

The Floating World

Under my wiper blade this morning, this message, ink bleeding through the restaurant napkin from the night's humidity, a watercolor conveyance of this koan:

the moon:
I wandered around the pond
all night long


Now: night breezes stir gauze curtains into a small dance, round and round, playing to the windowsill audience. Sultry. Cicadas sing their call and response love songs above the thick air. The napkin crumpled on my lap, almost forgotten except for the faint scent of her infused into it. From her purse? Her hand? Like charged particles, we attracted one another at this restaurant two months ago. She has carried its napkin this long. The logo in kanji reads:

The Floating World.

Then: she had me floating dizzily, my thoughts an unrepentant fantasy as I nodded my head toward the caress of her conversation, acting attentive while blood rushed in my ears, through my belly and even lower like a Shinkansen of sensuality thundering over me.

Meet me, I whispered as I brushed her cheek goodbye. I thought…no, I wanted to see that slight nod, that affirmation within the black slate of her eyes. The pond, I breathed, then turned to leave, my heart pounding so loudly I was certain everyone in the room could hear it, especially her husband.

Walking back to the hotel on the soft path, which dances beside the edge of the very pond I had intimated, I realize my folly. She would not show. How could she break away? Get control, I admonish myself, hands still shaking as I meander the dark path to my room. A cold shower. An X-movie. Relief.

I’d almost forgotten my proposed rendezvous. No, that's not the truth. I’d not forgotten, nor could I. Then this morning the note on my windshield. In a game of Go she has informed me it’s my move now.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Unwanted Vows of Silence

I've apparently ended a one month vow of silence.

Actually, I didn't realize I'd taken one, but ever since the AWP Conference last month, blogging has taken a backseat. I finally started another novel, so the time has not been wasted by any means, but I could be more productive.

There are times we need to simply stop our daily grind, to step off this treadmill we accept without question. In this multi-tasking, 24/7/365 madhouse, don't we deserve a little time to decompress? To quote the Pogo comic strip: We have met the enemy and he is us. I have filled my life to the overflow scuppers with inane tasks that keep me from shifting into 5th gear and entering the autobahn of proliferation. The paradox is that to achieve focused proliferation, we must first empty the rain gutters of the prolific flood of information (which we shall call "rain" in order to keep this metaphor flowing) that inundates our creative processes. Whew. That was a mouthful.

So, take a break people! A friend just returned from Italy, amazed that everyone there was so happy. I'm envious. Weren't Americans the happy people not that long ago? Who stole my cheese and all that? Sometime in the past twenty years, while nobody was paying attention, our inalienable right to laugh, to relax, and to take a f**king break were hijacked. How did that happen? It was like we woke up from a long nap and they were gone. Our collective mojo is gone and we want it back. Writers can't write without mojo. My mojo is now only a mojito. We call him "Junior".

Hey, we can empower ourselves. It's easy. Let's just say no. Step away from the cell phone, Ma'am. Just walk away, Rene. Let's do whatever it takes to clear away the brain static of too much "stuff". It's what I need to get back my focus for writing.

If you need a getaway place, here's one I suggest:

I suggest it because I'm self-serving and small. Of course it's mine! But it's a good place nonetheless. You should see for yourself.