Passing Through A Cloud
by Chris de Serres
Writing is unpredictable. You never know what you want to say. You know what you think you want to say, but what comes out is just unknowable. The words come out and you think it’s a great idea to talk about your brother that you haven’t spoken with. Then you see where the smoke is coming from and you head there.
You have no obligation to portray events accurately because writing is all about emotion and feelings. This is what gets us into trouble sometimes. It’s why writers are misunderstood. Our reality is a confusing place. We are creating a world that only exists in our heads. It takes courage, ignorance, or stupidity. Sometimes all the above.
I feel more honest when I write. After I finish a blog or an essay I feel so cleansed. I say all the things I couldn’t put words to in therapy or in a conversation with a friend. Sometimes I write and send it to my wife. I need her to see a side of me that she doesn’t always get to see. My writing can be hard for her. I can be harsh and judgmental. I am also romantic and nostalgic about how we used to be. I regret. I celebrate what we have.
The thing with smoke is that every fire dies out. Writing is an emotion felt in this moment. When I meditate I am very still. I am like a watcher. I feel anger, sadness, and excitement. All of these thoughts and feelings pass through me, like flying through some clouds. Soon I come out the other end. When i’m writing, I am the cloud. It’s ephemeral. I can’t grasp it and maybe I shouldn’t, but I try. I can always tell when I hold on too long.
I’m not sure if you are like me, but I go back and read my writing and inevitable find the spot where I should’ve stopped. Then I snip off the waste product. That was the moment where I passed through the cloud back into open sky.