It's hard to know what to write these days. I have a half-dozen drafts sitting on my computer, partially finished — or rather, partially begun. There's a poem about a dear friend. A self-analysis during a particularly hard week. An attempt at humor. But none of them came together to my satisfaction. None of them seemed worthy of publishing on this seldom-read blog of mine. And so they'll sit until I try them again, or discard them, like so many others.

I suppose I write because it is therapeutic. It is my creation of choice. And sometimes I even feel like I'm good at it, really good. But even though I'm proficient, I'm still limited. Writing, itself, is still limited. I could be Shakespeare, Dickens, Hemingway, Twain, Tolkien or any other great writer, and still be halted in creation. Writing, for all it's beauties, fails to capture being. I've gotten close at times, so close to expressing exactly what is feels like to be, but there is still a lacking, because writing, reading, expressing, it is part of being, but it is not being itself.

This thought was brought on the other night as I attempted to write about a series of experiences I had within a span of two weeks. I tried to write with language that was strong, that evoked poignant emotions, that pricked and stung. Things like "suffocating." "Hopeless." "Gasping." But even with these words, with the descriptions and metaphors, I was stuck in my thoughts, unable to write. I could only think, remember, replay, and then suppress. Nothing I typed came near what is felt like to be. To be in those circumstances. To fight those emotions. To give in. To rise out.

And that's really what I wanted to write about: The rising out. The point in which my head burst through the water's surface. The point where the sun rose. That sweet moment when I lay on my bed and let a melody wrap around me, engulfing my aching and peeling it away. There are no words to adequately describe those moments of finding relief amid the roar of battle.

Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe there is a way to write in such a way that another can feel precisely how you do. Did. But then, there would be a hollowness. For to be is to live, and living is not found in reading about another's life.

So it seems there is a protection in limitation; my life is my own. You cannot understand it perfectly, nor I yours, but we can share them.

And that, that is truly being.


  1. Yes, I agree. And for you to see and understand that protection is a blessing.

  2. I have had similar thoughts on and frustrations with language. One of the strangest aspects is how the “being” self and “writing” self are influenced by time. In life, time seems to move faster and slower, but sometimes when I'm writing, time seems to skip out all together. I think this enhances your point about experiencing life, but also shows that sometimes life needs meta commentary, a place to pull way from the experience in order to understand the experience better. So... I guess I think it is a good thing that writing doesn't capture reality : ) Sometimes I just need a place away from reality in which I still have influence.