word herding

[wearily] Who’s in charge here?…if indeed anybody should be in charge. The words won’t do what I want them to. The writing is becoming nominal much too quickly; there seems to be a lack of revelling in the (verbal) process of writing. The words have lost the freedom of the hills. The fun and excitement have gone and we (the words and I, and, unfortunately, you the reader) seem to be trapped in a rigid process of ordering and prissying. The atmosphere has become turgid. Insipid. Stultifying.

Maybe the desire to write what I think I should be writing has overwhelmed the writing. Maybe the preconceptions have become all too convincing and the words are jumping immediately into a traditional frame of reference; the writing has been bypassed. It is a curious thing for sure. The sudden jolt between the thinking of the typhic quotidian and the thinking of the writing does not help…the transition takes time (and the reverse of the process happens later in the day, equally painfully). It seems to be the thinking equivalent of an ecotone but the integration is not a fruitful one (it is more like a worst of both worlds situation). The days press in on me and the words sense it; they become nervous, skittish and unhelpful. They will hide. How to find the hidden herd?

I should walk or run to set the words in flight from their hiding places, to get the words fluid again. But the amount of information I need to retain for this to be worthwhile is beyond my capacities. I need it to hand. Am I being lazy? You see the flight of the words is their writing but it is subtly managed. Not by them or by me; instead, we are constituted by the writing. It is a joy when it is working. It so rarely works.

The green of the park trees is becoming heavy and the housemartins are flying amongst them; flying low. There will be rain soon. Let us hope that it is a fresh, revitalising rain.

2 thoughts on “word herding

  1. I can so much relate to that, from my experience as a designer, when having to design something for a job, and having to produce quality in doing so. Out goes the feel for the flow of the work, in comes scrutiny before I have put down the first pencil line on the paper. Having to deal with expectations? Above all, one’s own about the work we do…
    With my own work as a visual artist who uses running to generate an experience on which to base my work, …it has happened a lot, that I went out on a run, being all too aware, that I was wanting to instigate ‘an experience’, and a worthy one, if possible, that I could then, later use for the next step in my work,…..
    ….Working through it all or trying to forget …?


    • Yes, absolutely. It is that problem of intention and preconception leading the way…getting in the way. I’m also increasingly finding the analogy between writing long and running long very near the knuckle. Where the running sometimes requires a simple commitment to keep putting one foot in front of the other so the writing sometimes requires that stubbornness to put one word in front of the other.
      Keep running, keep writing!
      (How was Bala?)


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s