Tuesday, June 7, 2011

who'd wanna be...

that narrow rectangular box on my fb page is always there, beckoning me to tell what's on my mind. i frequently oblige. however, in particular moments, i find myself typing and retyping, trying to condense my overflowing thoughts into — what is it, 420 characters? i could do it. after all, finessing words is what i do for a living. but this isn't work; it's life. and in those particular moments during the tug of war between my fingers and the backspace key, the writer in me comes along and beckons me elsewhere. so i come here, to this forgiving rectangular space that stretches as long and wide and deep as my thoughts. this space, where i can be that "jug filled with water both magic and plain...only to lean over and a stream of beautiful thoughts flows out of me." that quote is taken from too loud a solitude by bohumil hrabal, a czech writer whose tiny little book is so simply, beautifully written that it doesn't matter that in real life we are far less inclined to see beauty or find depth in the life of an aged, lonely drunk. unless you buy into bukowski's brand of smug self-satisfaction disguised as literature. i do not. hrabal and bukowski are both dead. but if hrabal hadn't ended up in a pile on the pavement — just like the droppings of the pigeons he was supposedly feeding that day in 1997 from his 5th-floor hospital window — he'd be doing the world more good. as for bukowski, modest mouse says it best — who'd wanna be such an asshole?

i've no reason to write about hrabal or bukowski today. they crept in unexpected, just like everything else that ends up making sense to me later. today my mind was pacing back and forth between wondering why i never know when to give up and knowing that if i knew when to give up, i'd be somebody else. and i like being me, even when i want to not like being me. did hrabal and bukowski like who they were? doesn't seem so. the former internalized it, to the point of suicide; the latter externalized it with women and booze. so they both got it, it being life, horribly wrong. what a waste. i think about things like that...how i never want to feel like i've wasted an opportunity...to speak my mind or go after something i want, whatever it may be. lately my life has become immersed in things absolutely heart-making and utterly heartbreaking. so i held my breath and dove in, looking for whatever opportunity i shouldn't waste. so far i've found myself nothing but out of breath. i told my mom today that i'm fed up and frustrated and tired of false starts and dead ends and really, mom, i think i need a miracle. and she said they're still out there. miracles. hmm. i can't say i believe that, or at least not in the sense of something wonderful happening without me doing a thing to facilitate it. you give good; you get good. that's how it works. so of course i knew there would be no miracle, that i'd have to fill up my own little jug with more magic. and to hell with bukowski.

1 comment:

  1. what do you mean to hell with buk? he was a good writer, not as great as Hrabal but still.