~I write because I could not live in any of the worlds offered to me — the world of my parents, the world of war, the world of politics. I had to create a world of my own, like a climate, a country, an atmosphere in which I could breathe, reign, and recreate myself when destroyed by living. That, I believe, is the reason for every work of art.” – Anaïs Nin
I cry over a dead cat all night long.
His black and white fur is dirty and sticky and bloody right there in the middle of 61st Avenue. Flattened, lifeless, & nobody gives a damn, not even bothering to move him to the side of the stupid road.
“Doesn’t anybody care?” I ask my mother. “ Doesn’t anybody love him?”
I am seven years old. Old enough to recognize that life can be unfair and stink, stink, stink.
Yes, I know, I said it three times just so you hear me.
When I arrive home, I curl up inside my bubble-gum pink blanket and write a poem about the ill-fated creature. At an early age, I know that words calm me the way nothing else can—as if syllables and sentences embrace every organ within my body causing me to let go, release, breathe, and ultimately live.
After all of these years, nothing has changed.
When I feel I can’t go on, I grab a pen. When I am out of control with mourning and melancholy and misery, I run to my tablets and begin scribbling unrecognizable words until every shadow empties out.
God meets me inside the pages.
I experience things so powerfully that I can literally feel the blood pumping thru veins, my heart thrashing outside my chest, and my ovaries performing flips-flops like a fish desperately seeking water.
I believe all writers must suffer in such a way. And “suffer” is the appropriate word because it would be SO MUCH easier to be anesthetized, unsympathetic, indifferent, and wingless.
A butterfly pinned to a border.
It would be so much simpler to declare, “I Don’t Give A Damn if people are starving, oil is spilling into our oceans, poachers are killing elephants for ivory, 18,000 women are murdered by domestic abuse every year, and unwanted cats are dead in the middle of suburban streets.
So. Damn. Easy.
To bury my head. To cover my ears. To clip my wings.
I write—I tell my story—I tell my sister’s story—I scream out every word like it’s the last thing I might every say…
Because I know if I can’t change the entire world, I can change some of it.
That is not enough.
*****I watched “The Misfits” when I was a young girl & this powerful scene w/ Marilyn Monroe epitomizes what I would do ( many days ) if I did not write******
—-Dear, Readers, what do you do to escape and breathe? What do you do to make the world a better place?