Friday, April 21, 2017

wild sky writer

Most of my favourite authors have earthy, root-rich, forested voices. I wish to sound like them. I dig up old broken tales of winter hags and tangle-haired women and bone singers. I lay the words infront of me and try to work out how to fit them together with mossy dark conjunctives and beautiful sentences. And then, restless, uncertain, I seek inspiration from the woodlands and meadows and feral magics those authors write about.

But the truth I keep bashing up against, falling apart against, is that I am not an earthy woman. I don't live like one, parent like one, comprehend the world like one. And I don't write like one either.

If I'm being honest, I don't really find comfort in the forest, or sitting amongst wildflowers in long, fragrant grass. I can not abide the sea. What I want is distances.

The idea of the forest.
The silence between said things.
The space between text and understanding.
The faraway hills.

And the wind, the rain, the rivers in the sky, moving through those distances and suggesting stories that do not need to be told to be powerful

I don't mean that I am an edgewitch or that I live or work in the liminal spaces. Absolutely not. Infact, I believe they are sacred spaces in which the wild god dwells, and as soon as we step into them we change them - fill them.

I think its good for writers to understand about the timbre of our voices, but I also believe we need to consider too what we hear, and how we hear it. What kinds of conversations do we have with the natural world, the spirit-filled world? Does the earth drum up stories for us that we eat with wild acorns and medicinal weeds and teas of flower and smoke? Or does the wind drift poetry into our eyes and our hearts?

Never mind if all our favourite people are writing about earth and wonderful old fables that enchant us. Perhaps there are readers out there wishing to read about storms and dreamy horizons and profound night silences and what lies between stars and candlelight. If we know, we can speak it for them in a way earthy people can not.

I suspect it may be harder for sky-spirited writers to settle easily into writing, simply because of the nature of their kindred element. They are always being blown this way and that. They are always left feeling just outside of belonging. Earth writers have the advantage of being grounded. Perhaps that is why most windswept stories are actually poems. We catch their threads on a passing breeze and weave them quickly, instinctively, into words that do not often need composting or pruning. But oh, imagine the book that is a wild storm ...

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