project thing-a-day: 3. the gates

"...[W]riting every day is easy enough."

Except when it's not.

"...[A]ll you need to do is open the floodgates and pour words on the page..."

Except when the gates are so warped and rusted that—although you're pushing so hard you feel the skin on your shoulder catch and crush between your bones and the unforgiving metal and wood, feel the violent blossom of a bruise welling up—all they do is scrape and shriek against each other for a single earsplitting inch. Except when it's been drought season for so long that the words are stuck and stagnant in the stinking mud and slime caked at the bottom of the gates and every attempt to dig and loosen them just releases another noxious flume, another rasping whisper that you're not a real writer, who the fuck do you think you're trying to fool, you're not even good at writing for yourself, you have so many half-empty journals left broken-spined and bitter, whirlwind flings that end dog-eared and smeary for a few dozen pages and heartbrokenly pristine for the rest, all the possible stories left dormant and untold and useless.

Except when the page is blank not as a smooth new beginning but as a reminder that your biggest and most consistent failure is not finishing what you start.

I didn't even publish this entry—bitchy and empty and meta as it is—yesterday when I should have.

(there's that "should" again)

I don't know why "better late than never" seems to be the hardest lesson for me to learn.

Here's proof that I'm trying.

-b