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Sunday, October 16, 2016

I Am Not By Nature

I am not by nature a person who likes to deal with confrontation.  I guess that is true of everyone. In a way, continuing to keep this blog going in the wake of negative and destructive comments is difficult.  Some people almost like negative comments on their work online, whatever that is. I don't.

It takes a lot of something--I want to say courage, but that sounds egotistical--to keep writing in the face of someone trying to settle personal issues publicly. God knows, in the middle of the worst grief I have ever known--or, more accurately, one of them--I made public comments on both Facebook and this blog which, when I settled down, took away. This blog is not for settling scores; it is for talking about my writing, my ordinary days, my dreams.  I have noticed that my writing outside of this blog is slowing down.  It is because I have not come here to share my thoughts.

There is a larger world outside of any conflict one might be going through in the rarefied world of a family.  I am old enough to know that these conflicts have a way of sorting themselves out and arguments end.  Sometimes it takes about 90 percent time and 10 percent willingness to sort things out.  I have no doubt things in my family will be set right again.

So, on to what I have been doing in the last few days or so.  Mostly, I've been sorting papers and setting up a better writing space. I feel like that behavior is a bit like a rabbit making its nest. I know I am gettting ready to plunge into the hard work again of Asha's book.  It really is her book, I think: I'm just the scribe who toils away and follows the path she unfolds. I also battened down the hatches for a rainstorm which is happening right now.

I dreamed about her last night in the place where I meet souls: a place in my dreams which is an ocean shore on the East Coast, though exactly where, I do not know. The sea is sometimes calm, sometimes less so. There is a stretch of sand and then an old-fashioned wooden sidewalk which looks out over the sea and sand.  There are arched gaslights on dark steel poles sparsely dispersed on each side of the bridge.

When I first entered this dream-landscape, I saw a boat out in the ocean, riding the crest of a slightly larger wave than I have seen in this place.  The boat was red and full of passengers, rowing with long oars.  Suddenly, a whale came to the surface and dived back down, its tail moving in that hypnotic arch, slowly.  I could see its outline in the water.  I remembered seeing them that way at Point Reyes, long ago, outlined in sheer blue water, like archangels made out of shadow and salt.

Then I saw Asha standing casually at the sidewalk's railing, looking out towards the whale.  She wore the white dress I have seen her wearing a few times in the dream-world, almost like a caftan, but with a somewhat tailored shape to it.  Sometimes there is a gossamer cape or veil trailing in the back of the dress, but not this time. The dress always seems to have some sort of radiance to it.  Her hair was dark brown-red and very shiny.  All she did was turn and look at me, but her expression was so kind and warm, her smile welcoming.  She simply acknowledged me and nodded, and did not turn her gaze away.  I felt as if she might be saying, "You are doing a good job.  You cannot stop.  You cannot leave me and Anina behind."

I must admit that every week, I feel like giving this book up, and every week, I find the strength again. Her appearance in my dream this week simply seems to say, "Keep going!"