Today I was stumped into writing silence. I didn’t know where to begin my writing. I didn’t know what I wanted to write about or how I would come up with anything at all interesting as all I felt was tired.
I felt worn out like frayed denim or all strained like a washcloth full of snags and rips once drenched and now left to dry in the hot California sun.
Like these examples, I felt so cliché, so trite, so devoid of anything interesting or original to say so I chose to do one of my favorite mundane tasks: look for quotes as writing seed starters.
I googled “peace quotes women” and the quotes which came up were perfectly fine but mostly about war. I meant more like inner peace, since I am working with anxiety - and minimizing it - this week.
I morphed into “contentment quotes”. I decided not to rule out quotes from men this time and once again, lots of wondrous words magically arose. I laughed and decided “This one, yes….this… is my most fertile writing seed.”
The most fertile words?
My beloved poet “friend”, Allen Ginsberg, reminded me, “We're all golden sunflowers inside.”
Laughter, that ever repeated “carbonated holiness” space as Anne Lamott describes it, is exactly what is missing inside me right now. My anxiousness seems to be a combination of lots of details, short time to complete my tasks and generalized angst.
Oh, the thought of Ginsberg’s words being so: “We're all golden sunflowers inside.”
I can’t help but smile. And that makes me happier, instantly.
“We're all golden sunflowers inside.” I can hear it being said in a variety of ways which makes the actor within me happy, too.
There is a story I have heard and have no idea of the facts behind it.
It goes like this: Buddha arrived in front of a gathering of eager students, waiting to hear wisdom. Buddha had a sunflower in his hand as he approached the students.
He didn’t speak a word, but he held the sunflower aloft for all to see and explore visually. He left without saying a word. He gave no narrative or discourse. His only commentary was silence.
He just held a flower: in my mind’s eye, a golden sunflower.
Jack Kornfield wrote this: “If we could see the miracle of a single flower clearly, our whole life would change.”
I would agree and add to Kornfield’s words. If we see the miracle of any single thing clearly our whole life would change.
What if we morph the three gentlemen, Kornfield, Buddha and Ginsberg together. Take the serious spirituality within “If we could see the miracle of a single flower clearly, our whole life would change.” and the wacky spirituality within, “We’re all golden sunflowers inside.” and the single flower sermon of Buddha and blend it with our laughter and perhaps sarcastic or unwilling incredulity and what would we find?
Just sit with that a minute. Miracle. Sunflower. Golden. Within us.
Maybe Jack Kornfield and Allen Ginsberg and Buddha and You and I are onto something.
I know I am smiling more now than I was when I sat down to write feeling stuck and wishing I had something to say.
Perhaps I still have not said anything helpful, but three gentlemen did.
Right now, that is more than enough.
Plus I’m starting to believe you and I are indeed golden sunflowers inside.
Once again, that makes me smile.
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Julie Jordan Scott inspires people to experience artistic rebirth via her programs, playshops, books, performances and simply being herself out in the world. She is a writer, creative life coach, speaker, performance poet, Mommy-extraordinaire and mixed-media artist whose Writing Camps and Writing Playgrounds permanently transform people's creative lives. Watch for the announcement of new programs coming soon!
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