Blood, Ink, and Nightshade

I’m going to pick my brain a moment. Prick it with a pen until it absorbs the ink and makes something beautiful. Blood and black blending into deadly nightshade.

Creativity’s a tricky beast. It haunts you, stalks you, makes you feel. I’ve been lured in by its intoxicating scent for more than a decade now. I can track my life back through all that it inspired me to produce and the tortured things that never got the chance to grow.

Creativity slips away. Or that’s how it feels like sometimes. That’s how it feels now. I call but nothing answers. It doesn’t speak to me how it used to. My mind buzzes with the effort, my fingers go numb with the strain, my eyes drowned by the emptiness in front of me. I’m stalling. I flounder. Nothing works.

But creativity is only lost when you don’t chase after it. It never willingly came to me. It never put in the work to stay. Like a light in the dark, it shines brightly. It warms the room. Gives you comfort. You’re surer in your footing as you walk forward. But it vanishes just as quickly. Forces you to stumble and trip as you claw your way out of the abyss. You have to force yourself forward hoping the light will come to you again.

I hope that this small offering, this bit of effort, will bring it home again.

Photo Credit: elqu @ Wallhaven

Wishful Thinking

Very little is accomplished just through wishful thinking. I wish a lot, inspired by the fairy tales I drank in hungrily from Disney movies and fiction. The notion of simply believing in something hard enough would make everything work out, in the end, was a belief sewn into the fabric of my being. If I wanted my happily ever after I had to believe in it. Like really, really hard!

Of course, now I know that wishful thoughts can only be made a reality through lots of sweat and optimism. If you have a dream, you have to put the effort in. You have to be willing to swallow down failure and learn from it. You also have to accept that failure will be more constant companion than your successes worth all the more.

I’m no stranger to failure. I often wear it like a cloak, bearing down on my shoulders as I make my way through the world. It has a bitter tang and weighs on the heart like a damp towel. Despite these feelings, I do believe in my heart that I am better for them. They make me want more. To do more.

But then there’s wishful thinking. A part of me still clings to the idea of a happily ever after but at the current moment, I have no idea what that looks like. There are so many things I want to do with writing, in particular, but I don’t really know where to start. And so I close my eyes and hope that something works out. But I know it never works that way.

And so I’ll offer up this promise to myself. To stop wishing. To simply do. Knowing that some things won’t work out but other things will. Nothing will be done if I don’t muster up the courage to do it.