Roman Numerals: On Inspiration & Creating

I.

Ideas come to me directly from the showerhead.

They also sometimes grace me out on walks,
the morning in the bed,
and sometimes from the walls of nonsense that I have splayed around me like some elaborate spider-square that only I know the purpose of.

Inspiration is an investigation;
except the ones investigating aren’t me.

They are stout gremlins,
goblins and faeries who spring out of coffee cups,
couch cushions,
flies that get trapped in the house and beat against the glass,
and sometimes,
just sometimes,

me.

II.

Go on walks. Trust me, though I know we do not know each other, but walks are good and you should take my word for it.

No, don’t have anywhere to be. This is important. Just go. Put on your shoes, a coat (if the weather say), grab an umbrella for the unexpected and something to keep your hands busy. Coat pockets work fine. In fact, pockets are ideal. If you haven’t got many clothes with pockets on them, you have a supreme lacking. Head out your door. Let the wind pick a direction. Your feet have one purpose. Make sure they fulfill their purpose that day. Walk. Walk. Serpentine your way throughout the alleys, the sidewalks, the roads, the woods; visit any body of water that permits. Walk in the water, if permitted. If not permitted and you want to do it anyway, do it anyway. Take off your shoes. Find some grass. Now lie in it. Look at the sky.

If you are still wandering at this point, you’ve done something right.

III.

If you get the itch it will nag at you until you scratch it.

Scratch it,
with a pen.

Feel that?

What a relief.

IV.

When you have dreams, we all have our guesses.

Jung saw the mystic, and Freud thought the repressed mind.
Some say we are learning, and others say we are forgetting.
The gypsy will whisper, Prophecy,
while them jailbirds only wish it were so.

The Sumerians said Shamash, the Egyptians said
the dead time.
The Taoists say that the eight plus six bring truth.

My favorite, is China.

A dream is an adventure lived by the soul.

When I hear this, I feel things move.

V.

Stuck. Blocked. Spinning wheels. Lost. Caught. Going nowhere. Trapped. Maddening. Fury. Toss something. Hit something. Have a good cry. Do nothing. Watch television. Read a book. Sleep. Wake up. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.

Strike.

VI.

People make good muses.

Not everyone thinks this.

One man I met, said that the only inspiration he ever needed was himself. It’s all him. All the time. All of it comes from his belly, so bloated and overwhelmed that he doesn’t need anybody to inspire him.

So, what I said was, “So you aren’t interested in anything unless you think of it.”

He said that’s not what he said at all. I said, “So, what are you saying exactly?”

There was a pause. Then he said it’s not like he didn’t enjoy peoples ideas; after all, he loved learning new things, but that art was different.

“And then what’s art exactly?”

An expression and interpretation of the self through the world.

“So the world has nothing to do with you?”

Of course it does.

“So people aren’t included in the world?”

That’s not what he said at all.

“What are you saying then?” Then it hit me.

He’s just a liar. He doesn’t know.

I felt a sadness then.

“You are missing, so much.” I said, and paid for his latte.

VII.

Four walls. Four walls. Four walls. Four walls.

Square.
Square.
Square.
Square.

Snow
Quietly
Undulates
Auroras
Riveting out
Eternities, that shiver in flight across the void, expanding all the unknown into known.

I’m out.

VIII.

Not thinking about thinking leads to clearer thinking. Not feeling about feeling leads to less quicksand, more fluidity and water. If one is constantly wrapped up in the thought of how one is doing, it is two steps forward, three steps back.

Anxiety is not usually good for art. However, mess is.

How does one get messy?

Think while you feel and feel while you think.

Fire and wind leaves all the forest in fear.

IX.

Things that make us frightened; now, that is something. Fingernails that glide across the blackboard thin, shrilling out some hammer that will pound the nail in with nothing but the nail’s fear of unguarded-ness. In a twist it darts in, straight for the mind; clanging quick like Paul Revere, riding rapid in its fear. Suddenly all the dark has every devil there, of every hunching jaw and barrel chest, of every moon shaped fang and claw that leads to every night of unrest. Things that make us afraid; now, there is some imagination! Silence becomes a howl, every pop a monster. A slight creak sends one reeling, and should a doorknob turn we stagger. Nightmares leave our beds unfamiliar; scary stories strip us of our sense. We beat the heart back as it beats us, but nothing we carry give rivalry to that grand towering horror; all the blood vessels pump to fed it, so while we weaken, it grows stronger.

When I am afraid, my fingers run like hell.

X.

We all wonder:

What must I do to create?

I am unsure exactly how to go about this. Even so, I have noticed, that a good starting point, is simply to ask:

What must I do to create?

Then, my desk drawer slides open, and a little fae-like being flutters out,
and starts whispering.

I do not know this creature, but,
she seems to know me.

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