Saturday, April 07, 2007

The Wall

There is a wall where my inspiration is. It's built up tall and thick and strong. It is standing between me and my words, me and my art, me and my designs. I don't know what to do about the wall. I want to hit the wall, I want to fight the wall and have it fight back. I know the wall will not respond, it will merely absorb my anger into it and build up further to rob me of my expression, my outlets, my vents. Since I cannot get through this wall, I shall embrace it. Perhaps by forcing it here, into words, into descriptions, I can tear it down or if not that build a door into it through which I can pass.

The wall is made of my anxieties. I've half a dozen if I have one. Anxieties are what one will make of them. Some of it is stress. Stress from work, stress from the kids, stress from life. I've overextended myself with professional commitments this year. I'm a popular lecturer on the teaching circuit and this year I have already four presentations scheduled in Korea, plus one in Kuala Lumpur, and several dozen others that I won't get confirmation about for at least another two weeks. All the traveling makes me a bit antsy. I like doing this little talks, these discussions were people come and listen to me and take what I say seriously, but it wears on one. Last year I did almost one a month, and in some months two. I decided that was to much and this year I would cut back, but already I've broken my word to myself. So it goes.

Maybe it's just time that is built into this wall. I've been in Korea a long time. I'm a month away from the sixth year anniversary of my arrival in Korea. This makes Korea the single longest place I've ever been settled. Maybe I have itchy feet and I want to shake up my safe and solid existence and go somewhere else. Maybe I am too comfortable. And what is wrong with all that comfort. Comfort can be good, it can be happy, and it can be inspiring.

I look at the wall in my mind and it stand solid and firm and I've not hit on this thing yet that it is constructed of. I see memories in it, I see pains, I see fears, I see all those things that make up who I am and I see none of them that I want to pull on, to tug at, to expose. I see my family, the family that no longer exists for me. I miss that family, from once upon a time. A child's hope for something simple that will never be simple. For something uncomplicated that has been complicated by my own actions, my own selfishness and my own deceit. I have said goodbye to that family that I was borne to and instead made one that is more comforting, more accepting, more understanding of who I am. And yet the loss of that biological tie haunts me still. I see the faces in the wall and they stare down and me and they are angry, mocking, hard. I see them and I want to turn away from the wall and just disappear.

I see my wall and it is built up nice and solid and strong. I know what things will tear it down and these are the things I will go out and seek today to find my inspiration. To find a way to get back to who I am without this feeling of insipidity that I am full of now. I need spring, and warmth, sunlight, sex, talk, adventure, birds, a dog, love, happiness, freedom, randomness, Korea, America, friends, myself, breakfast. They don't know what breakfast is in Korea. For breakfast here people eat things I would label soundly as lunch or even dinner meals, strong soups with enough pepper to scorch the tongue, rice, ham, fish, peppers, seaweed. All of these things will cover the breakfast table, but my western stomach balks at it so early in the morning. Maybe breakfast will be the lever I can wield against my wall to tear it down.

I will make pancakes.

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