Tuesday, August 17, 2010

to sleep perchance

What is it about writers and sleep? Are we afraid of missing the most needed story in history, or staying awake mulling over details... Is it the consequence or concern bled from too much reading by torchlight, an over-active imagination, or being hard-wired to dream awake...
Being a night shift worker I am more concerned about being woken by ring-tones, as normal people try to call me in their daylight. It's a strange world where some fall off the wall of consciousness at the mention of sleep, and others remain awake for nights on end. Nobody will die from insomnia, and possibly the greatest fiction lurks like gemstones in the harsh darkness of a weary mind. No grief, pain, excitement or suggestion can burn the soul like endless hours of pondering and oblique distraction.
So with frazzled distraction, you finally decide to stay up and write for a few hours but some far off rooster will call you to the real world two hours after you have fallen from chaos. 
Consoling yourself that you are not average, destined for greater things is some comfort until you land in a zone where days, weeks and years have been swallowed by bright headlights and snoring neighbours...and no great things are on the horizon other than reality.
And then, there is that sweet possibility that the next page written erases the distraction of blurred faces, missed appointments and bumbling though daylight hours. The warm buzz from realizing your words work, even for some. Maybe the savour of a life inside life, eyes into the other worlds is its own reward, to be cherished rather than chastised and dismantled.

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