Begginnings

Begginings
"I will be further from home than I've ever been …"

I can see the impending ending much more clearly than the new beginning, though neither have arrived. The impending ending casts a more believable story, as if the current plot line could not possible be broken between here and there. The following new beginning seems barely notional from here, and could turn out to be a simple extension of what I already know or could manifest as a sharp break, or even as something somewhere in between. I don't know. I do know that an opportunity for a sharp break lies just around the next corner. I'm not quite ready to let go of the current status quo, which has grown to serve me very well. I'm likewise uncertain of my ability to grasp onto a fresh thread, but then I never am.

I some days ache for change but only rarely ever try to treat those symptoms.
Even when I'm aching for change, it usually seems far beyond my pay grade to imagine what sort of change might suffice. Sitting down to write a poem, as I will be doing later this day, I try to empty my mind. I might start with little more than a preliminary title and pray that the balance of the piece will emerge through constraining association. Image might well spawn image, leaving a chain I tell myself that I could not have possibly planned beforehand. I tell myself that I simply must start nearly empty in order to properly fill the page, though I might only still be railing against my fifth grade teacher exhorting me to outline first.

I enter the new as a beggar, panhandling for a premise. I rely upon small kindnesses extended by strangers, ideas I had no notion of knowing before I entered. I suppose that I resonate the context, vibrating to the frequency I stumble into there. I can't credibly care too much what inspires and connects my ideas, for that would too closely resemble planning ahead when there is not yet any ahead to credibly plan for. I suppose change is more like opening a door, the patterns ruling the space within will quickly enough inform me of the game.

The first few tentative steps should seem awkward. The initial ideas shouldn't make much sense. Making sense starts out non-sensical before evolving into any coherent form. Before the change, my discriminators have matured into fine guides. After, those same wise counsels prove unreliable. I will rely upon their guidance anyway, wrong ways being perhaps most informative when newly arrived. I learn where to go by going nowhere at first. I'll reliably turn the wrong way when exiting the subway and walk three blocks before realizing my error, then struggle for a full half hour to reorient myself by redrawing my erroneous internal map. I might feign a casual stroll, hoping that nobody else knows what I just did to myself. I will hide my mistake even from myself for a time.

I might feel oriented for less than half the time I inhabit the space, a disorienting quarter on the front end and a similar quarter or more on the tail. Once the goody starts giving out, the popsicle seems finished before it's gone. Before the goody starts giving, my tongue sticks to the damned thing and I am speechless for a spell, warily circling it for an obscured entrée. In the middle of the snack, I progressively master consuming it, cleverly anticipating and capturing almost every drip. Next time, I seem to simply start all over again, as if my prior experience had erased itself since. By this time next week, I will be further from home than I've ever been, almost a quarter of the way around the world. I wonder if I'll be FindingHome there or if I will have moved beyond my searching into a new Beggining by then.

©2019 by David A. Schmaltz - all rights reserved









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