Had another idea for today’s post. But as happens when I come away from the company of my highly intelligent, soulful, heartfelt companions of Friday’s eSalon, I’ve found myself with another idea altogether. So, on this day of blue sky, brisk air, and a river that has fallen back behind its lower bank at last, a different post than the one I started.

The idea of self-defeat. The idea of outer-reality vs. inner. The idea of how we hang on.

We write, we make music to a particular conceit: the belief that we have something to say worth saying. The notion that, given enough exposure, our audience will find a critical mass of acceptance. We may not become rich; we may just become recognized.

A fragile world, that one. A belief assailed from all sides by the harsher truths of the world and the sheer odds against us. It is a world filled with storms and quicksand, rushing floodwaters and tiger traps. Staying creative, productive and alive there takes, as someone once said, all the running I can do just to remain in place.

For me, a writer who vacillates daily—sometimes hourly—between a faith in my work, a head-down determination to continue, and an utter panic that it is nothing more than crap, I know how easy it is to fall off the world…to fall into the quicksand…to get swept under the ugly waters.

And yet, not today. Not right now.

Chalk it up to contrariness. Write it off to my willingness to do the opposite of what I should. Today I will keep my eyes on the path. I will climb the hill one limping step at a time. I will force myself to understand that we can, we must, live the journey, not the destination. We must find the crystalline note of word or music and hang onto it for dear, dear life.

To Marc and Donna, to myself…to all of us who struggle (with whatever degrees of talent and luck visit us in this fickle existence) to find our readers and listeners and viewers…I wish you the joy of the steps themselves. If we never get where we’re going, may the trying be enough.

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