Inspiration and humidity

by MB


I'm writing because I haven't had the will to write. To prove that I can, that thoughts on paper (or thoughts and words entered mechanically into the unknown) can soothe me despite my mind's persistence that they cannot.

Overnight, a layer of humidity settled into Manhattan, taking up residence as if it were another eager seasonal occupant, subletting a stranger's oddly-lit and erratically-furnished space in the city from June to August. I've found its presence to be both inspiring and burdensome. Brimming with the eagerness of renewal, as if life begins again two times, once on the first of June and again on the first of September, but already filled with the sorrow of the realization that its presence is only temporary. The knowledge that it will not last.

I have spent the past few days feeling incredibly nostalgic for a place that exists only within the confines of my own mind, searching for the entryway to a dimension I cannot fully articulate. It's not homesickness and it's not mourning, and it's not a dredged-up-and-previously-repressed prototype of summer camp. It's that feeling of being settled. That, in spite of its transience, it is all going to be o.k. 

Books have provided only limited relief, temporary stasis from this unstoppable loneliness. We read to know we are not alone, and yet, in doing so, we articulate the very reality we are running from. Perhaps I've overdone it on this practice of trying to be present, straining the muscle that enabled me to lose myself in someone else's reality. Emotional burnout weighed down by physical fatigue.

If I had the patience or attention span I'd write every day, responding to prompts in a studious fashion with perfect cursive penmanship. I'd enumerate everything that I do not have, and ask openly for advice on how to mourn it all.