I only need reading glasses when I wear my contacts. Somehow I feel compelled to explain that to people. I don’t need reading glasses, not really. Even though I’m 47. Like that’s something to brag about. Of course, I wear my contacts all day long, so the reading glasses find their way on my face fairly often. So often that sometimes I forget I’m wearing them. Then I look out the window and it seems that Monet has had his way with my backyard.
It’s the hills to the southwest of my house that have been blurred lately. The ones that rise outside the window of my writing desk. I keep trying to write this post and instead drift to the scene outside the window, fuzzy outlines of pine trees and houses and golden yolk of dipping sun through my reading glasses.
It’s always hard to write when you haven’t done it in a while. There was such a flurry of work in getting my book published, and then promoted, that I thought I’d lay off the writing in December, and spend the time crafting a few gifts for friends and family. I considered taking some photos and writing about those projects, but it didn’t feel right. It’s something I’ve done in the past, flirting with the crafty bloggers, but it isn’t what I want to do here these days. I thought about taking pretty photos of advent wreaths and fondue pots and a college kid come home from school, with a bit of poetic prose about family and traditions and light from candles. But, no. I just kept staring out my window, uncompelled to write.
Of course, when one hasn’t written in a while, and waits until the first day of the year to do it, all sorts of expectations cramp up the fingers on the keyboard. Should I write about resolutions for the new year? About how I want to write more this year–even though I write the same thing most every year, and there is something particularly tedious in the navel-gazing of a writer? Should I write about a few things that have captured my fancy at the start of this new year, like the irony of how the gorgeous new Flickr phone app has me smitten with my camera again after a year of shooting mostly through a phone lens, or how a book of recipes for greens and a smoothie challenge have me wanting to cram my vegetable drawer with green stuff? I could, but there you have the links, and what more is there to say?
Any writer, any artist will tell you that when the work doesn’t come easily, you must simply plow through and do it anyway. Make something bad and blurry and unrefined. So here you go, my friends, a crummy, unfocused post for the new year. Maybe it’s an inauspicious way to start a year–no goals, no focal point. Maybe, though, there’s something in looking out at a new year through the blur of reading glasses, and just reveling in color and shapes and light and hope and renewal and change. Let the details emerge when they will.
Happy 2013, dear readers.