I had this idea the other night when I couldn't sleep, that the dog, with her head pressed up against mine, was actually trying to soothe and ease my thoughts. I'd worry about money or the future, or I'd just be remembering the Spanish word for something, or thinking of an article I wanted to write, and she'd burrow her forehead into mine a bit more and I'd go marvelously blank for a bit. I needed that. A warm pug mind eraser.
The problem with having a good memory, is that everything comes back to you from time to time. The problem with being a writer, is that you suddenly feel like you should write something about what is suddenly coming back to you.
Over the weekend, I read this wonderful essay in The New York Times (T Mag) about two writers meeting, falling in love, and parting at a well known writers' colony. I have an idea about who the man is in the essay, and it felt both exhilarating and wrong to be reading about the intimate details of their relationship. I also had this overarching concern: What if all of us writers suddenly started writing about what goes on at colonies? (Beads of sweat. Dry throat.)
I've long believed it's best to keep some secrets. I can be confessional to a fault for sure. Hell, I've kept this blog for almost a decade now and most of my life can be skimmed through by scrolling down the sidebar. But, some things I vow to stay silent on. Until, perhaps many years have passed or a new door opens in the mind.
I loved the story of these two writers, the colony, the aching, painful beauty a new heartbreak gives the world. I guess what I'm saying is, it made me want to share some of my own. But, let's be honest, most of my relationships have already been pinned like the butterflies and beasts they are to the pages of my poetry books. What more can one say?
A lot. That's the thing. When you get into a writing jag, nothing feels off limits, or over; everything feels ripe for the plucking and thick with sticky wine only the years can perfect. But when do you hold back? When do you stuff your old losing tickets back in the drawer where they belong (because we would never actually throw them out, nothing gets thrown out)?
For now, I guess my sometimes loose lips are zipped and old flames and flickering wicks can live on in their shadowy world. Besides, it's almost dinner time and we're going out to a friend's house. My man is getting ready and I am too. I'm sure, at dinner, we'll tell some secrets, that not even The New York Times could pull out of us.