Dried up. That's how I feel. I've drained my pools of creativity. Like sponge fingers soak up hard liquor, or earth when it's parched and the first rains after a dry spell fall. A drought, not one brought on by climate change but of my own making, which came on too sudden. I wasn't prepared for these arid plains. And yet I could, at any time, have slowed my pace, locked in moisture.
have foretold its coming...
I strode ever onwards until my brain was a fevered hive and my body
cried for water. The last drops gone. All gone. But to make it clear
you tell yourself so in a loud firm voice “All Gone. No More.”
The small child dismissed, the still staring dog less patiently told
“Be off with you.”
child will forget immersed in play, the dog will pass the hours in
sleep then wake and again pad to the kitchen for scraps, but when the
drought is within the dryness lasts. And lasts...and lasts. It is not
dispelled by external hands, nor by substituted juices. Nothing
abates this thirst except knowledge. The knowledge that most often
comes unexpectedly, the unlooked for moments that causes questions to
flower into a bed, a lawn, a wild meadow, which you admire like a
painting from afar, or twirl in the centre with one arm outstretched,
and the other bent so your hand keeps your straw hat from flying off,
as your skirts flap at your ankles. The mental image that of a
combined Monet and Degas.
and drunk on the sight and scent of flowers when your land before was
stark, do you pluck and try to keep them alive, or let them wither
and die naturally? A profusion gathered in your arms must be arranged
in a vase and placed in a sunny spot you can see, whereas those in a
meadow must be walked through as much as convenience allows. With
either you never know when the bloom will fade, when the petalled
heads will wilt. Nature, especially that of the mind, is an inexact
can flood. Abruptly. The dripping tap becomes a tap you can't turn
off; the trickle then turns into a steady stream, and when turned on
full to a ferocious gush that sprays. This is the peak of creativity,
and as the feeling is one of ecstasy you lack foresight. The moment
is all that matters and being in it. Nothing is allowed to interrupt
or slow that frenetic flow. The deluge lights wild fires rather than
douses their potential to ignite, which goes against logic and
chemistry, and you so enjoy the rush you don't think to build a
dam or moat, or even to collect some in a pail for lean times.
burn: your face flushes, your lips redden, your eyes sting, the heat
seeps through and engulfs you, but you don't stop. You would rather
drown in this body of fire-water, than let its tide go out. But it
does go out, like a light, not like a flood. There's no standing
stagnant water to be bailed. Nothing needs to be aired, there's no
dampness anywhere nor any signs of rot which in extreme
weather-related floods would be a relief. The overhead blazing sun
would also be a welcome sight but here it is prophetical, though too
late as always in its warning, as when you try to fetch water from
the pump none comes.
None. Not in the air, not in the usual crevices. Areas that were
previously plump are deflated and shrivelled, and incredibly dry and
flaky. Everything works but at a tired befuddled tempo. What organ am
I? What do I do? Even those that have autonomic functions, that work
independent of thought, now require belief in their existence. Your
liver makes you feel sick, your kidneys don't give you the urge to
pee, and your heart pumps the blood around so sluggishly that your
toes develop chilblains and itch. Your pallor has turned a pasty grey
with a tinge of yellow, and your eyes are so dry tears cannot be made
and so cannot fall.
will pass, or so you tell yourself, and it will as all phases do, yet
the cycle must repeat.
meadow, flood; drought, meadow, flood. How I long for a meadow,
Picture Credit: Field of Wild Poppies, 1873, Claude Monet