This one is for Marc, with thanks for the loving, generous, encouraging email I found waiting for me this morning.

Woke today with the same boulder-on-the-head feeling that I’ve been carrying around intermittently for the last several days; the weight of a head that refuses to soar.

It is not that the days have been unproductive. I had quite a lovely weekend, quiet, peaceful and filled with thoughts. I did my research-reading on the balcony, from the special comfort of my new foldable camp/guest bed on a gently cool day. The second notebook is begun; I am nearing 300 pages of notes. Scenes are creating themselves.

Why, then, the case of boulder-head? Why, as an infamous Batman villain asked, why so serious?

Damned if I know.

My head has not picked me up in a fireman’s carry to spirit me away. It will. It hasn’t. I think back to the graces of six months ago, in which my days were filled with created worlds. This day is not that one.

And yet.

All things are trades. The universe is careful not to give us too many gifts at once: We do not take one without laying another down. And maybe that’s okay. In the act of love that is the act of Creating, there is beauty in the trade. If we are wise—even for a moment—we let ourselves see that. We use the act itself to soothe and stroke ourselves. We see the small nobilities in the dedication that keeps us moving forward. We remind ourselves of the grandeur of the choice.

This is one of those days for me. It must be. If I can’t touch the universe in one way, I will try to touch it in another. I will hope that, by being in the room, at least, the right door will open. I will use the time to do what I must as financial fuel to do what I will.

I write. That’s who I am. The struggle is the thing that comes with it, as tied-in as breathing. I could not imagine living any other way.