Saturday, August 09, 2008

Producing Vs. Learning

As an artist, writer, reader, and a human being who is desirous of becoming more, there is a terrible quandary like an ache in your chest, a shortness of breath, and a fit of panic that steals upon you. You have this need to produce, to say something that will mean something, to change people's thinking, and their lives, but all the while wishing to read or experience those things that will do the same for you.

You can be in the middle of some project, and someone will mention Edger A. Poe, and suddenly you wish you were reading, and have finished stories of his that you haven't. You will hear someone talk about a visionary artist, and want to run like a madman searching for the images to fill the secret gallery of your mind.

You find yourself wanting to know and learn and see so much, that fear makes visible the velocity of time. The very whiff of the juggernaut, makes you want to ignore sleep, food, and imagine building misters of salt water for your eyes so that blinking isn't a wasted moment. Time, the roiling darkness of it, is more dreadful than the heart of any darkness ever conceived.

But then you want to communicate all that you know and learned and have furthered. And you want to shout "Eureka!" like Archimedes at those bursts of inspiration and imagine your hands blurring like those of Data trying to save his daughter on Star Trek, to get it all down before it flits away like a fairy in an impossibly dense forest of thought.

And you realize, there is nothing you can do. Even if you focused solely on one pursuit, you will never get to the end. There will always be more. So you tell yourself, what I know right now is enough for what I need to do right now. But after this. Ah! Then, Mr. Poe, we have a date.

No comments: