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Thursday, February 21, 2008

Writing Practice: Prompt: What are the two places that pull you? 10 minutes

Pg: 204, Old Friend From Far Away, Natalie Goldberg's new book:

Often we are pulled between two places. They can be where you were brought up versus where you live now; a country place versus a city place; the sea versus the plains. What are the two places that pull you? (Of course, there might be more, but for right now distill it to two.) Often they are projections of our inner psyche.

Go. Ten minutes. Tell us about them. Give us the pull, the conflict, the desire. Write.

Note: *What I have written below came out in a timed (ten minute) writing practice. Other than spell check (and adding a few periods here and there) it is in its unedited, raw form. Please click on writing practice (in the archive) for more detailed information on writing practice.

I am pulled out of sleep this morning by a distant memory. There is snow on the ground. It has fallen thick through the night. I lie in bed and anticipate the day of fresh powder, fresh air, fresh laughter from young, exhilarated mouths.

There is no alarm clock next to my bed, no lunch packed full in a brown paper bag. There is no one to say good morning to. I stretch my arms above, way up, so they reach the white wall behind me. I stretch my feet and legs at the same time. I can take my time here, I can roll over when I‘m ready, eat slowly and deliberately.

I can take a long, hot, rejuvenating shower. There is no one that will follow. I do not have to save an ounce of hot water for anyone.

He does not wait for me to kiss him goodbye. I do not have to pretend I want to or that I care that he has not packed a lunch, that I have not packed one for him.

I do not have to make toast for the little ones, struggle to get tiny feet into tiny socks. I do not have to hold them to me, whining and wiggling, while I drag a thin comb through their tangled hair.

No, I do not. I allow the spray of water to soothe me as I hold my head up, mouth open, drinking in the moisture, the nourishment. I am in Fiji now, sitting in a warm pool, a waterfall massaging my shoulders, my neck, my back. I look beneath the surface. I see bright blue starfish there; they are still and silent and settled on the bottom. I sit in that warm Pacific until my body grows limp with relaxation, my mind grows silent with inactivity.

And then maybe I will crack open a pineapple, peel each layer of its hard skin and dive in, face first, to its juicy, sweet center. I will do this with my eyes closed and my body open. I am raw here on this island--raw and alive, raw and wide open.

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♥ Julia