What is art anyway except not pounding on walls?
This line jumped off the page of this book last night, just before I dozed off to sleep. At first, the meaning didn’t quite sink in. After all, I was tired from a day of working and practicing, my cheeks were flushed and warm after sitting on my back porch in the sun (yes! Sun!)
But suddenly I understood, you could even say I had one of those Aha! moments.
So that’s what you’ve been doing lately, I said to myself. You’ve been not pounding on walls.
Here’s the thing ~ in the past few months, my life has just exploded with artistic activity. My rehearsal schedule is so complex I resorted to printing out monthly calendars for the next three months and color coding the different activities so I have a visual picture of where I’m supposed to be and when. I have three authors who have emailed me with books to review, all hoping to do interviews/guest posts on Bookstack. And completely unbidden are all these wonderful writing ideas that keep popping into my head at the most inopportune times, causing my fingertip to itch for a pencil and paper.
You might think juggling all these balls would be overwhelming. On the contrary, I seem to have more energy than I’ve ever had before, as if all the neurons firing in my brain are recharging my metabolic battery rather than draining it.
This activity – the playing and writing, the going and doing – these are the things that have kept me from pounding the walls this winter, a season of frustration and disappointment and loneliness and distance and detachment. It’s been art that has kept me sane.
We all need life preservers from time to time, something to hang onto when people fail us or life throws us for a loop, when happiness appears as a small speck on some far horizon, when plans go awry and the world goes mad. At times like those, we can pound the walls in fury and frustration, or embrace the things that make life worth living, plunge headfirst into activities and passions that fulfill those empty places.
I’ve been lucky to have a bevy of life preservers tossed toward me this winter.
And I’m hanging onto all of them.
How about you? What keeps you from pounding the walls? What are your life preservers?