Taming the Monster

I write for the sake of sorting it out. Sorting out the mess in my head, the rumble of emotion, and hopefully be left with enlightenment.  Putting the words together, hoping for some ease in the process.  I believe my voice is simple with descriptive interchanges, sometimes sarcastic and funny, but hopefully having some deeper true meaning that touches all our centers.  That’s the goal.

There’s many days though that I can’t put two words together.  When I look at the blank page while my mind becomes enemies with my typing fingers.  “Who are you kidding?” it cries out to me.  I open writing websites for inspiration and come away agreeing with those cries.

Listen to those that read your work, I plea.  You hear over and over you have a gift.  How talented you are.

My critical voice looks at the simplicity, the absence of vocabulary and poetic creativity, and I account for my friends’ bias and politeness.

Isn’t that like so many things we’re passionate about?  That despite our God given drive, our very soul sustaining desire, we’re hampered by human doubt and fear.  Fear that it’s just not good enough.  That we’re deluded by momentary thoughts of grandeur.

And really, what does it all matter?  We’re all just sharing small pieces of our soul and putting it out there.  Reaching for that universal connection within.  Even in speech, we all carry a different voice.

It’s the same with singing, another passion I crave without possessing a professional talent.  I admire the amateurs that do and ache for that same skill.  Our church gives me the opportunity to live within that dream for a moment or two.  To stand in the spotlight for just a second and believe that it’s possible.  That you got it.

And then you listen back to the recording, knowing the truth.  You carry a tune, you’re better than average, but give up all hope of professional ability.  With practice and training, you’d improve.  But you’re fooling yourself to think that anyone is telling all their friends what artistry they heard in church that morning.

Shucks, throw in painting.  Making jewelry.  Throw in every last piece of my creative soul.  All the same.  Feeling that vision from deep within yet squelching it in the ongoing commentary of your mind.  Allowing it to throw road blocks to your imagination, the free flowing spirit that churns below.

In church, I’ve been able to smile to myself, knowing this is a gift to God after-all.  That She doesn’t require professionalism.  She celebrates the passion of that fuzzy pig-tailed child singing with gusto in an ear-splitting tune, as She welcomes all our varying alms of voice.  Its the vital force churning within all of us fighting its way to the surface.  Why not let it break free no matter its artistic value?

Because it *ours*.  Uniquely ours.  And that is precious.  Because it fills us with deep joy.  Peace that allows all else to fade into black.  And because it speaks to us in a way that nothing else can.

Professional value is merely a matter of marketing and business.

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