Monday, April 7, 2008

Some Restraint Is At Work Now

As usual, I leave myself with only a few hours to meet a deadline, despite having had weeks to work on a piece. Even insomnia, constant companion allowing me to write in the dark hours of the morning, disappears when I've got an actual deadline. When I actually have to finish something.

Yet this morning it occurs to me that this may be a matter of form - not of the piece, per se (seventy or so paragraphs on the subject of mud) - but of the writing itself, the space in which the writing takes place (needs in order to take place). The looming deadline drapes itself over the morning, fences it in, and directs nearly all my actions to the end of a particular and necessary writing.

Who said - as always, paraphrased - "there is nothing like a sentence of death to concentrate the mind?"

Well, anyway. The pigeons were lovely against the morning sky a few hours ago, the white undersides of their wings like heavenly scythes. The new ones are bright-eyed, their murmuring audible even from the office (the home office) as I checked emails, put the needed data on a USB key. The sound of pigeons talking to one another is a sweetness, a marked contentment, evidence of some peace.

Sophia enjoyed being outside with me - a lightness in her step, the way our eyes met, and then disclosing her thinking about these new birds. "I think they're making friends." Her pleasure was pleasing to me, also a puzzle, though I don't know why exactly. When I went in "to get ready for work," she followed and we talked about what to name the new pigeons. She hasn't named them yet, which I find fascinating. The last time we added animals - maybe six months ago? nine? a lifetime to a nine year old - she had them named in minutes. Some restraint is at work now, a sensibility that testifies to "growing up."

"Growing up." More like "growing outward," or whatever word or phrase contains the sense of blooming, and alighting on the blooms, and then floating beyond known borders, all at once. A redefining, a life inside the new definition, or life becoming known, being accepted, as a continual defining.

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