The wave

This work is an act of fiction and I take no responsibility for the untruths herein. Any resemblance to the truth is completely intentional, and the truth may contain both horror and love. This sentence was written last.

Dear god, esmerelda, I offer myself unto you, to do with me as thou wilt, release me from the bonds of self, that I may better do thy will.  Take away my troubles, so that others may bear witness to the power of your love, your power and your way of life. Forever and ever, amen.

I’m in vijournal now. Trying to write the truth. I have lost my ability to override the inner critic. The inner critic is always there in my head, now multiplied by an unseen audience. Before, I wrote for an unseen audience that was imaginary. Now, I write for an unseen audience that is real. I have nearly 200 followers on my blog. This will sound like a few to some and a lot to others. I remember when I first started on this platform, and someone liked my post, I looked at that person’s blog. The platform showed  how many followers. It was around 194, the number my blog now has. I remember being in awe. Also that this blogger had consistently around 20 likes per post. Now I am writing for the audience again. I started out writing for myself but here’s the audience. I’m trying to explain, to teach, to tell the truth in minute detail to someone who is just beginning their writing. To show how everyone starts somewhere. How everyone may feel the same in the beginning. I’m no magician and never have been. My sister was the magician in the family. I was the explorer, the researcher, the documentarian. That feels wrong to categorize and dichotomize that way. My father always said, in his booming voice, flashing the peace sign with three fingers instead of two, Don’t Dichotomize, TRICHOTOMIZE. A flash of his Chilliwack teeth. Any categorization or dichotomy is a fiction. Now I have gone back and trichotomized myself but not my sister. That is not fair. Now this sentence was written last. Of course I am a magician in some ways. I was when it came to boys for example. I seem to materialize men wherever I go. I have even birthed four boys myself. I have no idea why this is. Yes I do. That was a lie. The truth is I’m on a different subject now and finding myself back in the middle of a paragraph that I have no wish to clutter up with an explanation about men. But my sister was given a magic set. Perhaps she asked for one. She received one and she performed tricks. I begged her to tell me how it worked. But she never would tell. So I lost interest completely. To me there was no magic. I understood it was a trick. I felt the trickster was a liar and hoarder of knowledge. If I could not understand how the trick was done, there was no magic for me.

Now I am writing for a new audience. Who is it. I do not know. I was reading Robert Coover and his magic show story. I was wrong again before. There is horror in this book.  As well as rape but that is in another story; not the one I will speak of immediately. I have added this sentence and the last one later. Like the last horror-laden book I accidentally read, many many years before, I cannot seem to ignore the book. The book is there on my device, sometimes I pick up the device and I am mesmerized. Coover I mean his character performs some magic tricks. He has a lovely assistant help him as well. The lovely assistant gets killed in the end by accident, in a rage by the magician when he can’t pull her out of his hat. Her hips get stuck. It is comical at first. The audience loves the assistant, who is lovely and flirtatious and keeps bringing other murdered subjects back to life within the magic tricks. But there is no one to bring her back and she dies, stomped on by the magician in his frustration at her hips. Of course now that I write this we can see the ultimate metaphor. We have man’s frustration at not being able to give birth. The magician’s frustration at not being able to control the hips, the pelvis, the portal of birth. He is trying to pull the assistant out of his own fabricated portal — the hat. But the hat, which has done a lot throughout the show, ultimately can’t birth this woman, no matter how hard the magician tries to pull her out, because her hips get stuck. The man stomps on the hat finally, with the woman inside, there is the horrific crunching of bones and the audience is horrified. There are no refunds.

This next part was written earlier. There are others who read the blog and make themselves known in likes or comments, but do not follow. There are still others that lurk, the platform shows this to me in a world map, though not in much detail because the platform wants me to pay for for the detail and I rather not know the detail in this case. That was a lie. I would love to know the detail. The power of the crystal ball, to understand the world from afar, using a one-way mirror. No that is not true. Now that I write it I can’t stand the thought. I have had a glimpse of that power and that power only destroys. It is useless to have that power for the power itself destroys from without. The only true power, the only bright power, the only power for good, is the power of the present moment, which is the power that comes from within. Yes that’s what I wanted to write. This morning I woke up. It is the first day of the kids going back to school. They have been on holidays with me this past two weeks, and yet I have not been on holiday. I continue to work, though mostly in my head. I wrote one trillion words in my head but only about 20 thousand on paper. If you are reading this and think 20 thousand sounds like a lot, it’s really not if you understand that it is mostly waste. So many words that will never see the light of day. Why? Because I simply cannot organize them.

Before I started this little game of writing I was only an editor. I say “only” an editor because at the time that seemed natural and easy to me. Now I am “only” a writer. I have a natural understanding of language. There is no work in editing, or there wasn’t for me, back then. I could read someone’s paper and immediately understand what needed removal, moving or changing. I was obsessed with it, I could not read without a pencil in my hand. Now I switched to becoming a writer. I have a different mindset now and I cannot switch properly to editing. Yes of course I can correct this or that here or there but I cannot see my own work objectively. If I try to edit, as in if there is some external pressure, even generated by me, to deliver the work to another person, I turn and turn in editing circles and never get out. One time I was on a beach in California. I was there with my sister, my future husband and one of the amazing boys I wished would become her future husband at that time. That is irrelevant. Why am I putting him in the story. My sister shall be angry. I know she sometimes reads the blog though does not acknowledge it, like many others I know in so-called real life. I do not like that. It’s as though they are using a crystal ball, they consume my activity, my thoughts, my emotions but do not reveal themselves. It gives me a bad feeling. It makes me want to delete myself, so that I cannot be seen. I can’t see you you can’t see me.

I can see them only in the stats. So technology has shown me, in any case, that I have a real audience now.

In the olden days, before the Internet, an author would have to publish his or her work somewhere in print to have it read. Here again he or she would then have an unseen audience. Unless they also ran a bookshop, and only

I’ve been editing and

Those lines above are orphaned lines. The are lines that started somewhere as an end-thought near the beginning of this document, then for some reason I went back and added more lines between them. So you see the beginning comes first, the end comes next and then the middle is filled in and then it’s completely mangled and I have to start again. I lost the train of thought because I started writing for the unseen audiences. I will try to resume my precious dear thought from this morning.

I woke this morning and realized none of it mattered. None of it at all. This interview I have been chewing on, this strange beautiful beginning that suddenly became so impossible the minute it became an assignment rather than a movement, has become a lovely assistant in a hat. I am the magician. I cannot pull the lovely assistant out. I have materialized her five, six times, all in different outfits, shapes and sizes. Sometimes she is short and compact, like tinkerbell. Sometimes she is long and strong, like a lumberjack. Sometimes she is shaped like a helix, in and out and in and out, ever spiralling. But she always, when I try to pull her out, gets stuck at the hips. Why is this? I can sit here now, in this moment, and type 1577 words and there is no magic. There is zero trouble to it at all. I just begin and I try not to stop. But the minute I think of delivery, of delivering this thing to the world, well, there is a great fear that scrunches down upon the uterus of this hat and closes the cervix of its opening, and I can’t get it out. I can’t deliver it. I fear the death of the assistant, I fear the death of myself, I fear the death of the audience. I bypassed that fear by same-day publishing, before. But now that I’ve sat on and written and lurched in the mechanics of the interview for two weeks I have lost all interest in publishing it. If I do not publish this piece of writing here, NOW, I shall never publish this either. Or perhaps I will, one day; I will think, just as for that piece “the arena,” “here let’s clean up this messy drafts folder.” That means either delete or publish or archive. I never delete. I only archive or publish. So sometimes I publish. Later I feel it was for nothing. The piece was not worth the mental energy. So I experience something akin to regret. Regret that I cannot get my life back, the part of my life that was spent worrying about that thing.

The interview is the vehicle I am using for this discussion (to whom am I speaking now? I am speaking to anyone who will not understand my neuroticism. In fact it is not neuroticism. There are no facts, there is no neuroticism. Nothing exists except in this moment. The moment I wrote “neuroticism” has passed. The neuroticism has passed with it. So there is no neuroticism. Do you understand? Perhaps you don’t like to see the banality behind the magic.) But I could use any piece of writing, or even any project YOU have been working on and not letting go of, in its place.

Writers have great imaginations, or rather we all have great imaginations but in a writer the imagination is developed early somehow. I do not know how. Or perhaps yes I do but this will not become a discussion of nature versus nurture. But in a writer we can immediately understand metaphor and apply the pattern of the metaphor to any situation around us. This gives us an almost psychic ability to understand patterns around us and assimilate them. The best writers are synergists. We pull information from around us and we assimilate it into a new pattern. Charlotte in her web. Yes all these writers understand. Some deal in horror and others deal in love. It’s all the same. I prefer love.

But finish the thought. It is time for me to leave this page, I have other duties to perform, ones that actually matter. The thought about the seaside, yes, the ocean in California, the great waves crashing over and over on the beach. I never learned to surf. I only had my body. I watched a woman like a mermaid, standing in the shallows, facing the huge, great, waves, crashing on the beach behind her. She did not watch them crash. She faced the rising swell, the inner curve of each wave, which towered above her, and she formed a fin with her hands and dove beneath the wave. She did this over and over again. I thought it looked easy. I went into the water. I too would be a mermaid, showing my beauty to my future husband, and anyone else who would admire. I walked in to the salt laden sea. The sun was glinting off my back, my legs, my arms, which were finally bronzing from the sun. I too had to dive beneath the wave, imitate the perfection of the girl who had gone before me, who stayed ever in one place, facing the waves, the waves moving past her and over her. But when I faced the wave something terrible happened. I did not understand the wave and the wave crashed down on me. The wave did not understand me either but it had no need of understanding anything. The wave just was. The wave crashed down on me and then left to finish its life in the shells on the beach, and I was churned into the next wave. I was caught in the undertow, being washed around and around in a seemingly endless cycle. The sea floor rose to meet me, filled me with sand. To my horror the lifeguard came to save me. It was one of the most humiliating experiences of my life. He saved my life and killed it in an instant.

The finished thought is this…. I lay in bed this morning, worrying about all I had not completed in the days before, that I had very much tasked myself to complete. I realized this morning that none of it mattered, outside this moment. The moment where I reached my arms outward to my husband, who was generating a heat like a sun beside me. This moment where I felt a soft warmth which emanated from the centre of his being. I reached out my arms, felt the warm of his skin beneath my hands. I connected in that moment to the presence within

us all.

18 thoughts on “The wave

          1. Got a couple of academic pieces in the pipeline so hopefully something pretending to be intelligent will be up soon. Definitely don’t want to mislead you re the excitedness of my life Nadine – more of a desperate scramble for survival lol!

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  1. I didn’t know where you were going with this piece. Still, I read it. lines written last preceding lines written to some other audience. Still, I read it. Subjects changing like underwear. Time reference bouncing off the paper. Tenses, who knew what they were doing. Still, I read it. And, I am glad I did. What a great finish! Thanks, Dr. Bob

    Liked by 1 person

      1. HI Nadine, The doctor part is the ‘real deal’ I am a psychiatrist, retired. I use “Dr. Robert” as my nom de’ plume de artiste. Acquaintances call me “Dr. Bob” and everyone else, “Bob”. Dr. Tulpamancer, is a new one. Bob

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        1. I had no doubt whatsoever that the doctor part was the ‘real deal’! I remember you mentioning it in the 500 words group on Facebook, which made quite an impression in such a casual setting (and therefore an excellent pneumonic device as well, so perhaps I understand better, now that I think of it, well done if that’s the case). Sorry for teasing you a little. Perhaps I joke too much and most of all I love to have fun with words. Coming from a background of language study I might be over-sensitive to the sociolinguistic implications of personal titles in what feel (to me) like equal-ground settings. I really like the honest way you write, and was delighted by the documenting of your tulpa project and other notes, which is why I followed your blog. Forgive my jocularity? Happy to meet you at your boundary, or at my bloomin’ borderline, as the case may be, dear Dr. Bob. Very kind of you to visit here, and leave such honest feedback, which I truly value. I shall do my best to become a more gracious hostess, as well as guest. Sincerely, Nr. (Nondoctor ;)) Nadine.

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  2. Pingback: In conversation with Akarsh Jain (part 2) – Bloomwords

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