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A life spent staring into space. A life in which the imagined is, much of the time, more real than the real. What writing asks. What it costs.

I am not the most social of human beings. Never have been. I don’t seem shy…I am…although, at times, I have learned not to mind. Whether the writing came about as the result of my emotional pathology or the other way around, I will probably never know. I will probably never care. But it doesn’t stop me from wondering about this writer’s life, sometimes.

Man-woman relationships come easily, come readily, to some people. For others, those relationships are difficult; impossible. For yet others, they never seem to happen at all.

For me, finding The One—that strange confluence of luck and intention—has not happened. Opportunities have not offered themselves. After a while spent in the silence of self, one wonders what door one must open in the universe to let others in. One wonders why we don’t entirely mind.

Part of the trick is isolation. Truth is, I’m not likely to stumble over the perfect relationship out here in the country; odds probably won’t get any better on a once-weekly trip to town. Part of it may be an invisible and unintended curtain I’ve raised around me. Part of it is certainly my completely unrealistic belief in love itself.

We hope for the impossible love. The magnificent love. The giving, open, emotionally generous love with no downside. The love that is given as unreservedly as it is accepted. The love that lasts. The love that probably does not exist, except in the heart. Which is why I have written mine.

I have written a wonderful man. He is based on a real person—a man I do not know. The not-knowing makes him a fiction, the expression of a dream; I don’t pretend that my knowledge is otherwise. And I adore him without reservation.

And in this act is another danger. Perfection is a tough act to follow. Finding an accepting, open-eyed, fully aware love is a rarity in life. Recreating even a fraction of that sweet fiction in a flesh-and-blood being? May as well wait for the sun to rise on the other side of the planet…it could happen, it probably won’t.

This love will not be warm at my back. He will not meet my eyes in the morning. He will not touch my hand. He won’t comfort me or be comforted. He will not cook me a surprising meal. We will never make love.

I have experienced the reach and height of what love can be. And, even knowing all that, I’ve been lucky enough to have a love like this in my life. Even if I’ll never be able to touch him. Sometimes, knowing is enough. Sometimes, it’s got to be.


All respect to The Decembrists for the use of their title, but this is a topic much on my mind. Again.


Some find it, easily; the universe sends it their way on a well-marked path. Others find it serially. And others hold the hope in their hearts, but never seem to find it at all.

Without being too disclosing here—without telling tales of past woe—I am in the last category. The wanting. The not finding. The knowledge of much to give but, for now, no one to give it to.

I have not found that great love. So I wrote mine.

David Emory in The Spiritkeeper. The level, steady guy. The love that discovers itself in the quiet of ordinary days. A perfection in small moments. An investigation of what love can be.

In that decision to write a love story—albeit an unexpected one—was the expression of a desire, the overcoming of a thornier me, the creation of a reality that I believe in but cannot see. The story is not a girlie-girlie bodice-ripper…I am not capable of writing a book like that; not willing to. This is a story of the soul.

A dangerous thing, to create a world when the real example is nowhere in reach.

It is an understanding that raises a question. It raises several…

Can one write of a love like that from a place of comfort? Can one write of perfect love when actual love is comfortingly present? Or is longing the ground from which the beauty grows?

And the toughest questions of all: Does the expression of love-on-the-page push to the background the possibility of anything less? Can one write happy?

So far, the questions are theoretical. I have written a world, a love, that takes my breath. It will have to do until the real thing comes my way.

For the writer who creates in isolation and offers her emotions into silence, these are the hazards of love.




Oh my.

The writer lives in long stretches of exhausting effort and heady moments of hope. Sometimes—much of the time—that projection of hope into an essentially indifferent world is like throwing one’s voice out into an empty room. The echoes in the emptiness are terrifying. And defeating.

But sometimes. Sometimes. Sometimes a comment will send you reeling with joy and gratitude. Sometimes a review will take your breath.

Both those things happened last night.

Got an email from Jo Bryant, multi-talented kiwi-Aussie, a woman who writes beautifully and may be even better as a photographer. She read the first part of The Spiritkeeper on its site, The, and read the rest when I sent it to her. She emailed me immediately upon finishing—once she could stop crying, she said. And last night, she sent me a review of it.

I wanted to share it with you….  Jo’s Review

The kindness of another person; the generosity; the incredible good fortune to realize that someone else has understood your work in precisely the way you intended it. How can one not be grateful? We write to be read. We speak in the most intimate voices of our hearts. And, as we do that, how lucky we are to have found a reader like this one!

I invite you to visit her site here:

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