Wednesday, January 21, 2009

rain, dry spells, and empty wells

Rain moves you. Makes you want to create. To sit in your office, classical music on the iTunes, and write. Something profound. Poetic. Something that might move others, just as the rain moves you.

Rain features heavily in works of longing reaching redemption.

(Does this, by extension, mean all of your stories take place on rainy days?)

Songs about rain abound. Songs about singing dancing walking in the rain.

In movies, epiphanies happen in the rain. So do break ups, make ups.

(Yes, come to think of it. Or, a good many of your stories, or scenes within them, anyway.)

Rain evokes place, the poetry of places discovered, or yet to be. Maybe that's what makes the Irish, with their rains-every-day island, the poets that they are, or were. Yeats. Joyce. Swift. Wilde. And, following in their footsteps, Frank McCourt, U2. Even Lennon and McCarthy, both of whom were Irish grandsons. However they express it, whether through song or story, they are all, in the end, poets.

There are others, of course. Many others. Too many, after all, to count.

3pm on a Wednesday in SoCal, and you're waiting for the rain. Waiting for the inspiration that will come with it. Waiting to create. Bernstein wrote, "Inspiration is wonderful when it happens, but the writer must develop an approach for the rest of the time."

This is your rest of the time. This is your approach, what you use to jump-start the muse, maybe, if she exists, and if she's amenable to being jump started. Which you doubt.

But it's rare when it rains in this part of California, so you know to take Bernstein's observation to heart. Because most of the time, it's a desert out here. Dry and arid and... yeah. Dry. Which means that, if you're waiting on the rain alone, your well of inspiration's gonna run dry, too.
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