Posts Tagged ‘The Writer’s Almanac’

The center of a Blow Pop. That’s what it’s like to hold my breath. The uneaten half of a Tootsie Roll. I’ve got candy on the brain. Substantial unanimity. For the good of the whole. Holding my breath.

Swimming across the pool. Remember that John Cheever short story where the whole story is about him swimming from pool to pool to pool in his neighborhood? But then when you read further about his life, you find out he lived in a groundskeeper’s cottage on a wealthier man’s estate.

Puddle to puddle to puddle.

The story about the pool, what was the name of it? There was one about a radio, too. They stick in my mind like white on rice. Like white on rice; the rice can’t shake it. I prefer brown rice – more vitamins and roughage. I switched over a long time ago. Unless I’m going to have barbecue hash, Southern style. In which case, I go for the white rice every time.

I have to get Mom to go to that barbecue place in Georgia we always go to. I can’t remember the name of that place either. Just that they have green rocking chairs and a creek running under a bridge you walk over to get to the restaurant. And then you dive up some stairs and it’s always real crowded. And they give those peppermint soft sucking mints at the end to freshen the breath.

Holding my breath.

I hold my breath when I am afraid. And then again right before I’m going to blow the seeds off a dandelion. Remember Ray Bradbury’s Dandelion Wine? When I was a freshman in college an artist friend named Anne introduced me to Ray Bradbury. He wrote a great book on writing. I like to read what famous writers have to say about writing.

I think I like it because I know they are going to say the same things I already know. Practice. Write a lot. Tell the truth. Write every day. Don’t mince words. Keep your day job. Find community. They never talk about the money. I wonder why they never tell you how poor you’re going to be in the early years? Maybe your whole life.

How many writers do we hear about that die before their work really hits the big time. I have heard of writers who become famous and then quit and go back to their day jobs because writing is too much work. That one on The Writer’s Almanac that Garrison Keillor was talking about in the background one morning when I was making a bologna sandwich to drop into my purple lunch bucket on the way to my part time day job.

Holding my breath. I used to take pride in diving into Granddaddy’s pool and being able to swim the whole under length without coming up for air. Sometimes that’s how I feel. Like I want to come up for air. But I’ve already broken the surface. And I know I’m breathing in.

Friday, May 4th, 2007

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