Archive | Quoth the Raving

December Runneth Over

I always forget this time of year is so inhospitable–in its quality and duration of light, in the dread it evokes that is only occasionally contained, in the anxieties masquerading as shared joy. Now that climate change is writ large, we contend with cold rain rather than pretty snow, to boot. Not to mention those tides of change finally, finally rising in Ameriker. Sexton said, “I know that I have died before–once in November.” Amend that to December, please, and pass me an umbrella. Rebirth is very messy.

Alone, Not Lonely (‘Tracks’)

I’m knee-deep in writing a review of the film Tracks but had to share a passage from Robyn Davidson’s eponymous book, which doubles as a brilliant anthem for electively loner ladies everywhere.

I had always supposed that loneliness was my enemy. I had seemed not to exist without people around me. But now I understood that I had always been a loner, and that this condition was a gift rather than something to be feared. Alone, I could see more clearly what loneliness was. For the first time it flashed on me that the way I had conducted my life was always to allow myself that remoteness, always protect that high, clear place that could not be shared without risking its destruction. I had paid for this over and over with moments of neurotic despair, but it had been worth it. I had somehow always countered my desire for a knight in shining armor, by forming bonds with men I didn’t like, or with men who were so off the air that there was no hope of a permanent relationship. I could not deny this. It lay, crystal clear, beneath the feelings of inadequacy and defeat, the clever, self-directed plan that had been working toward this realization for years. I believe the subconscious always knows best. It is our conditioned, vastly overrated rational mind which screws everything up.

I Am Capricorn, Hear Me Toil

Whenever someone asks me how my summer’s been, I say it’s been worky.

It’s not a complaint. I come from people who have a hard time finding employment–let alone employment they dig–and it never ceases to amaze me that I get paid for what I’ve dreamed of doing since I was small. Not to mention the tremendous satisfaction I feel as a woman, even in this day and age, that I have earned every cent in my bank account (though I wish it were more). Sometimes I want a time machine just to travel back to the ’70s and assure the worried girl I was that she’s going to pull it all off.

So the look of pity my reply evokes always makes me feel both misunderstood and a strange reciprocal pity. I could never exactly articulate why until I read this passage in a Werner Herzog interview: I’m no workaholic but a holiday is only a necessity for someone whose work is an unchanged daily routine. For me everything is constantly fresh and constantly new. I love what I do, and my life feels like one long vacation.

Maybe next time someone asks about my summer, I should just sing this quote.

"All, everything I understand, I understand only because I love."
― Leo Tolstoy