Thursday, April 9, 2009

village voice
I always thought I wrote to open the stop cock on the pressing, urgent overstock of inventory in my cluttered, disorderly, saturated mind. I always thought, in New York, that I wrote because I couldn't not write. My brain processed the world as a series of words, typed out onto a page. It never occurred to me that I needed the hard-pressed humanity, the the little sorrows, the accumulated enormous and tiny and bewildering moments in order to write.

Before New York I had bad boyfriends and big heart aches and an abundant, vaulting ambition. I worked long nights, late under the bright and flickering lights of blue buildings, tending to slow ailing and quick dying creatures--filled up behind their cages, eyes full of water and color--trying to breech the chaos and the calm of Emergency Veterinary Medicine.

Before New York I had a fierce and hard-beating heart full of sad ache for a boy who should have been a man, but wasn't. Before New York I'd run for miles and miles and miles along the green and golden ocean, trying to outpace my irrepressible insides. Before now there was much in my life that urged commentary, required compartmentalization, that I had to write it down,I had to place it some where else outside of me, in order to keep the sinew together, in order to quiet my unquiet mind.

What I am saying is that I am unaccustomed to such pedestrian complaints as the ones I have now. Sick from pregnancy and exhausted of the visceral constellation of maladies that seem to be unique only to me, causing incredulous speculation and vague disbelief whenever I try to explain them. Bored and tired of a job that reminds me daily that my talent and ability and ambition is disappointingly untended to. Facing the same redundant and thread bear sacrifices so many women have already suffered: careers for children, professional success for personal satisfaction. There is no new territory here, for me or for anyone. I embarrasses me almost to even give voice to it.

And yet, I still have this space. Am half-heartedly nursing it. Which is odd. This space that was so necessary to calm the chaos I urgently abandoned. This space that existed because of the hard and heavy heft of medicine and New York. And here I am now, in the quiet and the calm, empty and restless and wistful, wondering if I needed some of those small disasters to distract me from the echo and edges and dust in my heart.