Sunday, November 21, 2010
Stones and Story
November brings stillness to the lake: tourists are gone and boat traffic is down to the occasional fishing boat. It's a good time to work, and sometimes 'work' entails loosening or emptying the mind, or, what Grace Paley once referred to as 'sitting like a dope in a chair time.'
If it's possible to be outside, that's where I'd rather be. I could sit here:
But I am unable to sit for very long in a chair and do nothing, so my empty-the-head time is down by the water's edge, poking through the rocks, walking the shore.
No matter how many times I walk the same stretch, I always find something new:
That something 'new' might be something very old and much like the 'new' stones uncovered in writing a story. There is this one, that one, and ah, look what's under here. And in that one stone are dozens of new pieces to explore. Sometimes the most challenging part of writing a book is not what to include, but what to leave out. There is so much world out there.
Back up the hill now, mind refreshed. Pause here at the swing:
And now: ready to get on with the story . . .