Place of my Mind
Where there is no space, everything happens at once.
The stipulation for writing about a place according to Professor Dickson is to write about “places that are considered travel worthy by more people than just you.” In the past two months over two hundred people have traveled to the places my mind writes out. Yes this is a cop out, yes I’m meeting a quota. Yes I’m writing this for a grade. But it falls under the requirement of the syllabus. So bare with me. You have done such a good job so far.
I am utterly exhausted. I haven’t slept in a week. My roommate can tell you that’s a lie. All I do is sleep. I am lethargic. There is a devil on my chest and a black horse in my room. Yet I have given you all. I have spent the last few months in a de-sedimentation process. Like a deep sea diver looking for treasure, I have removed rock after rock, finding not turtles upon turtles, but my very self. I have sold everything I own. I have bought my field. I’ve given you all of me and now I have nothing left. I don’t think anymore. I only see faces. Mostly Maya’s. If I don’t write it I don’t think it. It sounds sad but it isn’t, words aren’t sad. People are sad. Faces are sad.
I am completely scared. I shake and cry out, “What is expected of me?” I am completely contradictory. Oh Lord, let it be me, oh Lord, let it not be me. Will I always be lonely? Do I have to go blind before I begin? Will I aspire to the second class poets of Rome, all the while knowing that I will beat Virgil himself? I begin here. He who is faithful with little will be faithful with much. Will I finish my race with pride, or fizzle and pop like my contemporaries? I am horrified by most everybody. I am alienated, I am angst. “If the world hates you, it’s because it hated me first…” And, none of you know what I am talking about. I am the biggest believer in making my writing for me. I put jokes in my work because it amuses me. I don’t do it for you.
That said, I do it for you. I have this burning desire to teach what I know, to show what I see. You wouldn’t know this by talking to me. That’s because I can’t bring what is in me, out. I de-sedimentize my heart on this paper. This screen; your mind. I repeat myself, I write the same thing over and over. I throw myself violently into these words. I vomit. I hurl. “It is not what goes into a man… But what comes out.” What goes in are books, your lives, light, the beach. I devour what I see, I eat it up.
I have nightmares all the time. I’ve already said this up above. Is this what I want to say? Am I making the most of these evil days? Don’t worry, I edited this. There was much more. This is stream of conscious, but it’s still art. It is highly processed. Anyone who tells you art naturally comes is a liar. Flee from that man! Get your money back! Resist him and he will flee from you. I was not visited by a muse, not even Urania.
“I am shamelessly self-involved // I spend hours in front of the mirror making my hair elegantly disheveled.” I worry that no one will like my writing. I know nobody will. All my best work, people hate. All that I hate, people love. Or is that really what is going on? This is the turn. Maybe, I overvalue my own work. An article I spent months on got little views. I was only proud because it took so long. It really wasn’t that interesting or clever. Another essay I wrote in a hurry, barely edited, got more views than anything I ever wrote. Yet another, written in the same way, got nothing. Does not chance happen to all? Maybe, art is inspiration, even a heavenly muse.
What then am I to do? How should I then live? Keep on writing, I hear. I also hear he who is skilled in his work will stand before kings, he will not stand in front of obscure men. The work excites me. So does my place in it. Here it is. I have given you all. Thank you for reading about a giant sign, a sunrise, a pier, a walk, a camping trip, a desert, a tree, a valley, a coffee shop, a library, a bird. I hope it all meant something bigger, something eternal.