Suck It Up

Something really cool happened that I think relates to creativity. I was vacuuming the fruit flies. I have been vacuuming the fruit flies periodically throughout the day. They are a nuisance and must go. While planning their ultimate destruction, I accidentally cleaned my kitchen.  If you know me, you will know that this is significant. If you don’t know me, know this: Cleaning is not terribly important to me, in that I don’t like to do it. I do enjoy a clean house, though.

So, in the process of sucking up flies, those fuckers hide everywhere, I vacuumed everywhere. It turns out the vacuum is also a good tool for sucking crumbs out of toasters, cobwebs from window ledges and I’m not sure what from behind the fridge. The coffee grounds under the sink near the garbage can, sand by the rocks collected over the summer, something fluffy from the corner- all gone. Thank you fruit flies. I did rip the leaf off of one of my orchids, suck up a quarter and a pencil–Why is there a pencil under the dishwasher? And a bit of vinegar from the next to useless, do-it-yourself trap- not working- at all, I am sorry trusty vacuum for this. Though completely focused on ridding the house of these wine ruining pests, I managed to do something else, equally awesome. I cleaned the kitchen with enthusiasm and without being aware that I was working on the less than favorite task. I did it with gusto because I wasn’t cleaning, I was hunting and killing. Brilliant.

What does this have to do with creativity? You ask.  I’m not sure, remember I said, “I think relates to creativity”. But, hear me out.

Whether you have decided to create as a way to serve others or because you’re called to it or both, whether you’re writing, designing, sewing, growing, teaching, whatever your craft. If you’re an entrepreneur or an employee, a parent, a human who is here to make shit, than you have an obligation to do so and this takes some discipline and inspiration. After today’s fly exercise, I’m thinking it might not require, for me, sitting at a blank computer screen with the flashing black line, forcing words. Great work can come from playing, walking, sitting and staring, vacuuming fruit flies.

I do realize this is completely contrary to my last post, where I said, ‘I had to just DO IT’. I still think that is also true. Both are true, sometimes you have to just create because there is a deadline, or you promised or because you must and sometimes you have to do something else because forcing it doesn’t work. The cool thing is that the something else can lead to the thing you needed in the first place. Today, I felt mad inspiration come from housecleaning and pest control that no amount of willing creativity would have achieved. It just took listening. So, when has  going off path worked for you? I want to hear your stories about great work coming from play, times when you surprised yourself because you thought you were doing something entirely different from the resulting product. What have your accidental achievements been?

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The Mystery

The Mystery

Fill your pockets with rocks,

Take the ocean home

a

drop

at

a

time,

Reel in the moon

And the stars

Of a million-million years.

You are alone.

Shovel sand into a hole

That won’t fill, forever

And haul all of the twigs

From all of the forests,

From all of the places

You Must See.

You are still alone.

It will remain unfound, unsolved,

No answer. Though much effort expended in looking.

Alone.

You may find

After all of this busyness, bewilderment,

Exhaustion,

Along side you,

Me.

Creatively Lost

I have a confession to make. I am guessing it will come as no surprise to you, my 5 readers, that I have been feeling creatively challenged. Or maybe it’s creatively misdirected. Or maybe it’s creatively drained. Anyway, I’m certainly lacking in clarity and this is effecting my ability to create. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been plenty productive professionally. I just haven’t been here writing. I haven’t been in my journal writing. I haven’t been scribbling little bits of nauseating poetry on napkins. In fact, I haven’t even written a grocery list in ages. I did however, find one in the parking lot of the local grocery store. The list had a little cherry sticker on it and ordinary items. I think the list maker was having salad that night. I hope they lost the list on the way out and not on the way in. I always find that to be frustrating, when I take the time to write the list and then misplace it. We all know how winging it in the grocery store goes.  When I picked the notepaper up, I looked around to see if anyone was watching. It felt valuable to me.  I picked it up, read it , shoved it in my purse, thinking it might inspire me to do something creative. But, I have since lost it. I thought I would write something about lost things and then I lost the thing. ha.

I digress.

I saw a snippet in passing on twitter or somewhere that writer’s block is a myth. Where was that? Ahhh, it was here on WordPress, writelarawrite. (She has made some lovely art to illustrate the point. You should check it out.) I didn’t really want to read it. I knew what was coming. I’m not creating because I am not creating. Simple as that, not because I had lost my need or lost the ability but, because I was being lazy. I thought I would just wait for inspiration and genius to strike.

Hard work is involved? Commitment? Consistency? I, somehow thought loving it would make it easy. What the hell? Where did that come from? Aren’t I the mother of two teenagers, married for 20 years, sharing a home with a bull terrier?  If you love it, if it’s meant to be, it will be easy. I have to laugh. How could I think it would just happen? It seems to be a recurring theme in pretty much any ‘I am successful at (fill in the blank)’ story.  You have to put your time in, keep doing it until you get good at it, do it when no one cares or listens or reads. I’m here to write because I love it and because maybe other people get lost or lose things and they shouldn’t feel alone.

So, I’ll just write and maybe you can find whatever your It is and then share it, with me.

Today's Writing

Today’s Writing