Thursday, March 26, 2009

Zombie Mind

Of all the kinds of horror movies, zombie movies are the only ones that actually, truly terrify me. Ax murderers? Phfft. Vampires? No problemo. Little girl ghosts? Ha! Bring 'em on! But zombies are scary. You cannot reason with or outsmart a zombie. You can't really even outrun them. And if they get you, you become one of them.

You know how in Zen they talk about Beginner's Mind? Well, lately I have had what I call Zombie Mind. It's not as nice a Beginner's Mind, believe me. The part of my brain where all the poetry happens is being sucked out by a vortex of work, illness, and worldly worries. I have no mojo. I'm working on some things, but it's all sticky and rusty in there. Yet my heart is mopey; it just wants be home writing, while my brain lurches around in a drooling, mindless haze of to-do lists and extraneous worries and double-checking, as a big part of my job is to worry and double-check. And my body; yeesh. Let's not even talk about what's going on there. It's just wrung out completely. I've been guzzling Emergenc-C like crazy, trying to get some vitamins into me. I hate these times, when I feel so distracted and pulled away from what I love the most. On top of it, I feel guitly for not focusing enough time on my writing. If I were a true poet, I would be passionate enough to forgo sleep and sustainance. I would be able to stay up all night and write in a fevered haze with nothing but dry pretzels for nourishment, right?

When I am writing, it's one of the few times that I truly feel that belong in the world; that I feel at peace, like I am in the right place in the universe, doing the right thing; everything flowing; this enormous silence all around me. I wish it could be like that with everything. Sometimes it is. Sometimes if I let go of all of the worrying, things do fall into place; things are fine, just fine. It's hard to find the proper place between vigilance and faith. It's hard not to take a nap in front of the TV when I should be writing. It's hard not to get discouraged and wonder why I bother; it's hard not to think sometimes that poetry is an absurd thing to spend time on, and yet I am compelled to.

I read lots of poems about grapes, pomegranates, blood oranges. Maybe I need to go eat some fruit. Maybe the all that metaphorical passion juice will buzz me awake.

2 comments:

Dana said...

"If I were a true poet, I would be passionate enough to forgo sleep and sustainance. I would be able to stay up all night and write in a fevered haze with nothing but dry pretzels for nourishment, right?"

Not true. Nope. Not at all true.

Hi.

The Good Typist said...

Well, that's my fantasy, anyway. But I'm a poetry princess. I need sleep, color, nourishing food, calm surroundings, and long, empty expanses of time...I'm the Paris Hilton of poets!