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Has writing arrived in search of you?

Do you remember the time
you wrote a sentence, a line, and realized that this is exactly what you wanted to do?
What you had to do? That writing was
the only thing that made your heart feel that particular way? I remember saying
to my husband once--It’s almost like
falling in love. And once you find that love, you wonder--where have you been
my whole life?
I mean, for some people, they always know. They’re 5 years
old and writing stories for their parents, whole novels by the time they’re 10.
And then there are others who have always loved to read and write, but struggled before realizing that writing could be bigger for them, that they had
the permission to really pursue it. Perhaps people encouraged them, but they couldn’t
quite hear the encouragement over all the noise in life. Or perhaps it
was what they kept coming back to, but their eyes weren’t open wide enough. But
once you do realize it’s what you’re meant to do, you’re just so thankful for that
arrival, that it’s finally clear. That you no longer have to bartend or substitute
teach or sell software. Or maybe you still have to do these things, but at
least you know that you’re doing them with a greater end in sight, you’re doing
them so you can afford to do what you really must do, which is write.

Okay, Mr. Neruda said it so much
better than me. I just love this inspirational poem.

POETRY

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And it was at that age...Poetry arrived

in search of me. I don't know, I don't know where

it came from, from winter or a river.

I don't know how or when,

no, they were not voices, they were not

words, nor silence,

but from a street I was summoned,

from the branches of night,

abruptly from the others,

among violent fires

or returning alone,

there I was without a face

and it touched me.

I did not know what to say, my mouth

had no way

with names

my eyes were blind,

and something started in my soul,

fever or forgotten wings,

and I made my own way,

deciphering

that fire

and I wrote the first faint line,

faint, without substance, pure

nonsense,

pure wisdom

of someone who knows nothing,

and suddenly I saw

the heavens

unfastened

and open,

planets,

palpitating plantations,

shadow perforated,

riddled

with arrows, fire and flowers,

the winding night, the universe.

And I, infinitesimal being,

drunk with the great starry

void,

likeness, image of

mystery,

I felt myself a pure part

of the abyss,

I wheeled with the stars,

my heart broke loose on the wind.


-Pablo Neruda

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