This week I’ve been sorting out the last loose ends in preparation for the new semester starting. (Much excitement, not a little stress, but overall quite a clean resolution.) I’ve also been looking at tying off the creative projects I started, finished and incepted during the summer, and next round of ideas as the year progresses.
Find following: a prose piece entitled ‘Candlesmoke’; a poem about the genesis of my creative practice called ‘That Which Must Be Done’; an observation on the naivety of the young; and a poetic fragment.
Does time burn? In its quiet corners, down long corridors, up on sturdy beams in draughty rafters. Does the smoke collect in the eaves? The soft weave of upholstery cloth slowly permeated with the rough tang of it. A tangible marker of the annals, the passing, the friction of years. Or is it the memories that burn? Smelling of old dust and regretful forgetting.
The smell no longer lingers, not truly, not more than a wisp of a memory. They were scented beautifully once. The candles we’d never burned. It was why they’d been bought, for the beautiful smells they might bring to our house. They are scattered now, and lit in some kind of effigy. Bright, greedy flame jumping from match-tip to fresh wicks, white and wax covered. Not the calcified, curled over things one re-lights a half-burnt candle from, but the kind found on a candle ‘fresh out of the box’.
Those boxes had sat, wrapped in plastic bags. Slowly dusty, then dustier, on various shelves and tubs and tables. They moved many more times than we did, truly. We never could decide them. Not to keep them, nor to burn them, nor to bin them. So they stayed, unburnt and neat in their boxes, dust working ever deeper into stubborn grooves. I guess they sit in an unresolved paradox now. Spread out and lit, by hands that don’t know the weight of our cumulative inaction. They are lit, they are being used, there is a joy in their purpose, in their fulfilment.
But it almost seemed as though they wouldn’t ever be lit, like their meaning had mutated. Like they should have been preserved as some kind of monument to busyness and forgetfulness and procrastination. I am unresolved. Am I happy they are lit now, burning away (into) the darkness? Or am I sad they are lit now, burning away (into) the darkness?
That which must be done
It has settled inside me
Started to grow shoots.
A clarification, a stark image
Of a potential I was already
starting to piece together.
It’s a ballsy, brilliant, beautiful thing
It’s going to rip
The whole world apart
As it grows.
The Naivety of Youth
The young are naive, so it is often said. Lacking experience, and the jading that comes with time, allows enthusiasm to spill forth unbound.
Rather than a thing to be derided, the naivety of youth is something inherent. What else can you do, when faced with not-knowing, than relax into that understanding and allow the knowledge you do possess to guide you forward. Youth may be naive, but it also has a journey, a path unfolding in real time as new things are learnt. As that naivety melts away, with age and hopefully wisdom, the path taken is far more valuable than the speed at which it was traversed.
From the past, the future shifts;
We time the swaying as they pass.