Three years ago, I was told stories about a ninety-year-old man’s first memory of crying, about a wise crone and her sisters using hot water bottles to warm the winter, about a painter who claimed his roots through ghostly images on canvas, about a mother metamorphosing into dragon and knight in the eyes of her youngest son…
Naturally, the tales stirred my Muse. Her whispers filled the hungriest parts of my mind… reminded me that we feed on words and delight in the preservation of memory. I plotted the story of their tales that same night, while everyone slept and frogs sang of summer’s end.
I’ve written different versions of the story, and they all feel… wrong. Last night, as I ran fingertips over the soil of my potted plants and listened to the mechanic roaring of Broadway, I finally figured out what kept diminishing the tales: I’ve been trying to bring a story to life, while writing it almost 3,000 miles away from its soul. The scrawling of those memories yearns for frog song, for bat wings speckling the night sky, for the prickling of the blackberry bush.
So, the Witch/Piano Man household flies off to Friday Harbor, where I aim to write a whisper… while communing with frogs, bats, deer, and eating more blackberries than it’s probably healthy.
I usually plan to blog little while I’m away from home, but I suspect that the telling of this tale is going to fill me so much that I might need to share some of the process with you. I’m looking forward to it—the telling and the sharing… Also, it has been quite a while since I’ve written about the writing process, from beginning to end. I kind of miss those posts.
Well, I better stop here. I need to have one last conversation with our house sitter, and I must revise my green babies’ watering chart—I’m quite enchanted by cemeteries, but a potted graveyard in my living room has never held much appeal, if you know what I mean.
What about you, my Wicked Luvs? Have you ever wrestled with creative work that won’t come to life until you allow for specific conditions? Do tell…
Edited (8/20/2015): there was a typo in the title (I wrote commuting instead of communing). So yes, there were lots of jokes about cars, trains and planes full of frogs. I enjoyed every one of them. 😀