Thursday, May 23, 2013

Walking in the in between

For the last few days, I've been in this in-between state, between depression and not depression.  It’s a weird state, an interesting state, and not one I remember spending much time in before.  Everything is suddenly symbolic.  Like the hummingbird that helped to pull me out the door, everything I see takes on meaning.  It feels like a good place from which to create art, and is giving me theories about the link between creativity and depression.  I bet a lot of cool shit was created in this weird in-between state. 

I walk into the kitchen and notice that the compost canister is full.  OK, actually I notice that it was full days ago, and now there is also a mixing bowl next to the compost canister overflowing with banana peels, strawberry leaves, and dead flowers.  I pick up the canister and bowl and think about taking the rotting cast-offs in my soul and trying to turn them into something rich and life-giving. 

I walk outside with the compostables and a light rain is falling.  I have always loved rain, especially spring and summer rain that’s not too intense or stormy.  Actually, I like stormy too.  If it were safe to be outside in a big storm, I would be totally into it.  Being outside in the rain is weirdly a mood booster for me.  For most people, it’s the sun, but I don’t really like the sun that much.  Sure, I’ll take a gorgeous blue sky on a perfect fall day, but there’s just something about rain.  I turn my face up to the rain and think about my tendency towards tears, about how antidepressants made me unable to cry, about how much I truly enjoy being moved to tears by something.  I like to cry.  Not sad cry.  I don’t like to sad cry, but I’m not willing to give up tears of poignancy and beauty in order to get rid of tears of sadness.  I embrace the rain.  Even the storms. 

As I walk back with my empty canister, I notice that the lawn service mowed down my tiny baby fig tree last week.  The fig tree that I planted outside a little bit too late this past fall, that probably froze too soon and went into shock, that had no leaves this spring.  The fig tree that I had given up for dead, but which was still surrounded by a protective ring of rocks and mulch so the kids wouldn’t step on it by accident and the mowers wouldn’t mow it.  [Seriously, mowers, a ring of grapefruit-sized rocks with mulch inside.  Don’t mow cavalierly over that shit.  That dead leafless stick is symbolic of someone’s soul, assholes.]  But here’s what happened.  From the root of the cut-off stick, new leaves had emerged.  Life.

New leaves grow from the half-dead, frozen, cut off stump of my soul.
P.S. If these are not fig leaves but are, in fact, a weed, please don't tell me.

In this in-between state, taking out the compost becomes a poem.  Or maybe three poems.  I’m not a poet, so I can’t write them.  They would come out unbearably cheesy and overbearing. I’ve tried.  Once I put the word “poem” on something I’m writing, it instantly turns to crap.  Prose is my poetry, so I wrote them my way.  Laundry next.  Hoping I can keep this state going, because chores are a lot more interesting when I’m wandering around with poet brain.  Maybe I should ditch the vacuuming of the living room that is on my agenda and instead go weed the front garden in the rain. 

Oh no, “weed the front garden” just became a symbol for grooming my hoo-hah.  Aaaaaand I think poet brain might be done for now.  

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