I fear desiccating rhetoric, the evaporation of eloquence, a vacuum in my mind sucking my words dry, leaving my soul crumbling.
And the more I fear it, the more likely it is to happen. Most of the time it is self-inflicted. Lately, it is beyond my control. Grief has robbed me of creativity. All encompassing, smothering, confusing grief that makes me want to wrap myself in something strong and impenetrable, in the armor of Shotgun Sydney. Loss is not as debilitating for her. Why would it be? She is mostly imaginary.
I started writing my last post, the cemetery post, in February after the passing of an old friend. Our lives had once been intertwined, briefly brushing past one another in a friendship that didn’t last beyond high school. His death was an unexpected tragedy, but the grief was pushed aside by life. Life never slowed its pace.
The post was going nowhere. It was stuck between autobiography and ghost story. A few words here and there followed by bulk deletes.
Then someone else was taken.
It was senseless and cruel and is still incomprehensible. Life came to a crashing halt, but the cemetery post found its place. I still haven’t quite found mine. Over the last few weeks, her death has become more of a fact than anything else, a fact surrounded by questions and uncertainty, a fact that caused me to slam on my breaks and swerve so that I didn’t get sucked in by the grief, a fact that left me feeling bruised and beaten.
A fact that sucked my word well dry.
I had nothing. Where there once was a never-ending flow of admittedly annoying wit, there was something hard and angry. I suppose that might have been the influence of Shotgun Sydney. Hard and Angry is her forte, a fortress that protects me from empty sadness.
I didn’t realize it, but at some point, life started moving again. And I have a hunch that its pace is quickening. Hard and Angry and Everything Else are still there, but they’re getting pushed around. Life is taking their place and covering them up like green grass sprouting from murky marsh water. Spring is here. The air is starting to feel good again.