It is impossible to truly love and keep the soft fragile center of oneself, that part so much like an egg, but not an egg, safe. (Of course, not an egg.) A person only begins with an egg. Once born, this beginning person is meant to be joined. Arriving in a self folded upon a self, a person is a vessel meant to be unfurled and accompanied in fly. One does not place an egg on a feather and expect it to fly. But that is often what we do in love. We stay inside our shells, content with fluff and the proximity of other shells, worry about being broken and forever cease to fly.
Os Guiness speaks about freedom, virtue and faith. Very Very
“’What do you fear my lady?’
“A cage. To stay behind bars until use and old age accept them and all chance of valor has gone beyond recall or desire.’”
“God utters me like a word containing a partial thought of himself. A
word will never be able to comprehend the voice that utters it. But if I am
true to the thought in Him I was meant to embody, I shall be full of his
actuality and find him everywhere in myself and myself nowhere. I shall
be lost in him. In patient endurance, we wait for God to make clear
what he wants to say through us. Such waiting not only demands alert
attention but the courage to let ourselves be spoken. Such courage
arises from unfailing trust in the wisdom of God, who utters no
My favorite time to write is in the late afternoon,
weekdays, particularly Wednesdays.
This is how I go about it:
I take a fresh pot of tea into my study and close the door.
Then I remove my clothes and leave them in a pile
as if I had melted to death and my legacy consisted of only
a white shirt, a pair of pants, and a pot of cold tea.
Then I remove my flesh and hang it over a chair.
I slide it off my bones like a silken garment.
I do this so that what I write will be pure,
Completely rinsed of the carnal,
uncontaminated by the preoccupations of the body.
Finally I remove each of my organs and arrange them
on a small table near the window.
I do not want to hear their ancient rhythms
when I am trying to tap out my own drumbeat.
Now I sit down at the desk, ready to begin.
I am entirely pure: nothing but a skeleton at a typewriter.
I should mention that sometimes I leave my penis on.
I find it difficult to ignore the temptation.
Then I am a skeleton with a penis at a typewriter.
In this condition I write extraordinary love poems,
most of them exploiting the connection between sex
I am concentration itself: I exist in a universe
where there is nothing but sex, death and typewriting.
After a spell of this I remove my penis too.
Then I am all skull and bones typing into the afternoon.
Just the absolute essentials, no flounces.
Now I write only about death, most classical of themes
in language light as the air between my ribs.
Afterward, I reward myself by going for a drive at sunset.
I replace my organs and slip back into my flesh
And clothes. Then I back the car out of the garage
And speed through woods on winding country roads,
Passing stone walls, farmhouses, and frozen ponds,
All perfectly arranged like words in a famous sonnet.
“Since I cannot mend the book, I must add to it. To leave it as it was would be to die perjured; I know so much more than I did about the woman who wrote it. What began the change was the very writing itself. Let no one lightly set about such a work. Memory, once waked, will play the tyrant. I found I must set down (for I was speaking as before judges and must not lie) passions and thoughts of my own which I had clean forgotten. The past which I wrote down was not the past that I thought I had (all these years) been remembering. I did not, even when I had finished the book, see clearly many things I see now. The change which the writing wrought in me ( and of which I did not write) was only a beginning – only to prepare me for the gods’ surgery. They used my own pen to probe my wound……I looked at the roll in my hand and saw at once that it was not the book I had written. It couldn’t be; it was far too small. And too old – a little, shabby, crumpled thing nothing like the great book that I had worked on day after day……There was utter silence all around me. And now for the first time, I knew what I had been doing. While I was reading, it had, once and again, seemed strange to me that the reading took so long; for the book was so small. Now I knew that I had been reading it forever, quick as I could, starting the first word again almost before the last was out of my mouth…..and the voice I read it in was strange to my ears. There was given to me a certainty that this, at last, was my real voice….there was silence in the dark assembly long enough for me to have read my book out yet again. At last the judge spoke, “are you answered?”
“Yes,” said I. The complaint was the answer. To have heard myself making it was to be answered…..’to say the very thing you really mean, the whole of it, nothing more or less or other than what you really mean; that’s the whole art and joy of words.'”