This week has been composed, somewhat, of a comedy of errors. Trying to attend a reading happening on a different night. Bursting into tears while watching a car commercial. Perhaps it’s a permeable time of year: we’ve just had Halloween and the Day of the Dead, and seen the thinning veil between the worlds. The news is full of people resolutely denying things they know to be true. My dog can’t decide if he wants to come inside or go outside. There’s confusion all around.
Like many people, I am sifting through the emotional sludge that comes from hating almost everything I read and write on social media, and yet being painfully addicted to social media. If I quit, I sometimes think, how would I find car commercials to cry about? Which is addict behavior. If I quit the bad thing, how could I keep doing the bad thing? I don’t say this thinking myself to be revelatory. I say this thinking Uuuuuuuuuuugh.
I feel like my mind has been split into a huge number of micro-consciousnesses, some of which are diligent and productive, and some of which are floating in a tepid and unearthly sea. Just like, hanging out. Last night, when I finally, successfully, went to the reading Aimee Bender did at the University of Arizona Poetry Center, in one of the stories she read (from her newest collection, The Color Master), a character stares out the window at some mountains, and when asked why she devotes so much time to doing this says, “It empties me out.”
Which pressed my heart like a finger on a bruise.
Anyway. I still have need of some fullness of mind at present, but I am thinking about how to make space, where to make space, what space feels like. How long can I stare, just stare, out a window, and if the time became long enough, what might I see?