It’s been hard to write this year. It’s not that I’m not learning. It’s not that I’m not solidifying. Nor is it that my beliefs aren’t crystalizing—it’s been hard to sit and write one thing, when there are so many ideas and pathways swirling about.
It has felt like attempting to write in a flood. Have you ever been in a flood? With water up to your thighs and rain pouring from the sky, you learn that water has a life of its own. You become mesmerized. There are not words big enough to capture the feeling of weightless fearlessness.
I wonder now why I was not afraid in that flood. My mom warned me of walking down the street, that man-hole covers could dislodge and I could slip beneath the city. I took what she said to heart, but noticed even then, that the thought was more intriguing than alarming.
That was New Orleans, ’98 or ’99.
The city painted in shades of watercolor grey.
I’ve always liked grey.
One color whose shades speak more boldly than most.
One color can convey a range of extremes from warmth and comfort to bitter cold.
The flood was the color of peace, perhaps because I hadn’t lost anything,
moreso because even if I had, I couldn’t do anything about it.
I’ve longed to write. When I catch a thought and ride it for a bit or two.
I have voice-recorded clips of strung-together words that perfectly highlight the idea-drop I’m on. Small jots in the notebook app.
This morning’s waking felt like God calling. A peaceful tug from dreaming to awareness. So, I thought I might try to illustrate the glorious absence, because the absence hasn’t been about the absence of thought, rather the bombardment of precious rain overflow.
What shall come forth from here?
It was the same question then.
It was so hard to imagine such a familiar landscape covered in water, that it soon became hard to remember what it had been.
Yet, the water receded, our lives resumed and the memory of the flood was nowhere to be found but in our minds.