Here's a little post from last winter that slipped through my fingers. While the reminder of snow and cold may not be absolutely necessary, I think the struggle to be content with our fallow times of creativity is always timely.
This deep freeze that has settled into Toronto is not only the coldest winter in the last 20 years, this polar vortex is also a creative ice block. I haven't written in so long, which not surprisingly, really doesn't make me want to step up to the blank page, at least with any sort of confidence and energy. This self fulfilling prophecy is no strange occurrence for artists: the longer you are frozen the more difficult it becomes to move. The ice lingers, and then, just when you think it is melting and you might have something to say, another snow storm hits. This time it's turbulence in your relationship, or an injury, or feeling deflated because a client dumped you, or you can't pay your insane hydro bill and your cat is dragging his ass on the floor because he ate some of the flowers your friends sent to cheer you up because it's the week of the 7th year anniversary of your mom's passing and his stomach is upset and your cant even imagine having to bring him to the vet because there's now a fresh 15 cm of snow on and in your car because you left the window open to air it out because a jar of pickles broke on the way home from the grocery store.
SIGH. We can be artists all the time, but we cannot always be in a creative upswing. Being an artist means having times of zero creativity, and so the meaning of being a good artist, I think is not all about what you put on show but the equanimity you hone, day in and day out, staying level-headed about quantity and quality.
The writer's life, I've found is like being this struggling orange kitty over here: reaching towards the fish that's flipping and flopping towards you and then just out of reach and then leaps so far away your fear your will never catch him.
Sometimes you just gotta rest up and love the beauty of the blank page for what it is: potential. It will be scribbled on soon enough, so for now, enjoy it's zen like presence as a teacher of patience and trust that you'll feel the burn of the master's whip on your back soon enough. So for now, I am letting my writer baby sleep. And while it's resting, I am dreaming every night about my mom, my family, and of course tons of random desires and fears, the work is happening on another level, and that too is okay. Soon, the balloons around my furry orange belly will pop, and the proverbial fish, will be within my sharp talons!