Writing has been a part of me for a very long time, but for most of my life it was a private thing. It is how I deal with things, process them, make sense of them. It is also the place where I am most vulnerable, for there is nothing to hide under in words, despite what writers may tell ourselves. I suppose if one writes fiction, there might be more there to shelter behind or under. Poetry, essays – autobiographical simply by their form and function, leave little to the imagination. Writing is dangerous business for sure.
When I made the commitment to pursue writing with intent, it dawned on me that I am consigning myself to putting my personal life on hold by active choice, since I also work full-time in a demanding job. In the past, I wrote well while married. But I cannot give myself to writing and a new real, living person without one suffering, unless it is a very special and already established connection with a deep appreciation for the creative endeavor of writing. It takes too much energy, both the writing and the being, to split myself so. Which leads me to some writing humor…
An Ode to my Laptop
If my laptop were a man, he’d feel most attended to, lavished upon even. My hands are upon him every single day. He receives an inordinate amount of my time, attention and focus. I talk to him, coax him, cajole with him, share music with him and laugh with him. I stare deeply into his eye-screen, even though my vision is more likely to be inward than outward. Inside of him, he holds precious parts of me for safe-keeping; things not ready yet for visibility to others. By joint effort between the two of us, I bring things to life – people, emotions, places. He travels nearly everywhere with me. When his brain gets full, he has a spare brain that I can dump things into, so he never gets overfilled with my words, my photographs, my music – he is always willing to take on more of me. If I want to be with him in the middle of the night, I don’t worry about interrupting his sleep or being selfish taking up his time, and he awakens easily without a murmur.
And on my part, when I tire of looking at him, I just turn him off and walk away; I don’t even have to give an explanation, say where I’m going or feel guilty for leaving him alone. He rarely complains, except during an occasional power outage Of course, he also has to be near me when I am sick, sees me without makeup or even presentable clothing, puts up with my off-key singing, and yet still never, ever leaves the toilet seat up!
He never stutters when I am looking for a word, doesn’t mock me when I am trying on prose out loud for weight and tenor, he is steadfast behind his screen when I am overly emotional, frustrated, silly, tired or even angry. The time flies by in his company, and feels productive.
He asks nothing of me except to handle him with care and keep him turned on.
If he asks me to bring him a beer one day, should I consider it a committed relationship?