all, prose & poetry

Anatomy of a writer’s block

You’re trying to say something and it’s not coming out.

Years after first realizing words are beautiful, powerful, amazing, that words CAN be thoughts, then discovering ways to put them together in better, more creative ways, scoffing at the results, learning to spot cliches and commonly overused, worthless expressions, later still beginning to birth your writing instead of just scratching it off the skin surface, expelling it from the deepest, bloodiest places within, and realizing even that is worthless, a mere ritualistic sham misused by millions of aspiring pretenders, by liars, ghosts and false idols, renouncing this tainted, false wit, discarding your own newborn.

And now, back to the beginning. Slowly, cautiously. Allowing the mind only the simplest of words, and the oldest. In directus veritas. In lacuna sententia. In bareness no deceit. Mistrusting and venomous, you spit out thin, transparent shells that pass for conversation. You judge them and mark down imperfection on score boards.

You barely notice as the imperfection chart grows and new columns appear. You are now judging and discarding people, essences, concepts, yourself. Words did this. Cliches and rotten sentences. You’re a troll, merciless, unable to breathe or stop. You sit in a labyrinth, beyond which is nothing. The walls are crumbling, old, eaten up by strange poisonous roots. The ground is dry and cracked. Everywhere in the maze is death, within, beside, over and above. There is nothing to do but think, speak, write. Words atop words atop neverending, miasmal words. Betrayed and disbelieving, you try to understand how you got here. You crawl under a pile of skeletons of the writers before you and scratch the ground with their dried, smooth bones.