a few days ago, slightly wacked-out by jet lag (blessing in disguise), i awoke at 4:30 a.m. with a wakefulness that offered no room for negotiation. i tried to appease the wakefulness with a by-the-light-of-the-street-lamp tour to the bathroom. “please believe my sleepy eyes!” i said to wakefulness, looking myself in the mirror. but, saggy eyes or not, awake was in my left shoulder and in my right, and there was no tossing or turning that would shake it out.
at 5:30 i gave in. i got up. toted my computer into the kitchen, closed the door, and had just started catching up on some over-due correspondence when my friend r.b.c. showed up in a chat window. the talk at that pre-dawn hour went straight to the heart. recent life circumstances, hopes & desires, relationships & changes… the kind of talk that made you want to crash your big sister’s slumber parties.
along the way, i mentioned that i had been dealing with some anger in my life – apparently unaccounted for by any real, present circumstances, therefore ubiquitously available for equal dispensation. i believe this is commonly called: being cranky.
i was sick of it, i told her. didn’t want to be that way in my life, letting so much energy go towards negative shit rather than creation. i had other values, better impulses to illuminate. but, r.b.c., in her striking wisdom and good big-sisterly sense, said something important. something really, really important… which will bring me to how much i love my guitar in just another moment.
she said: anger can be a catalyst. and, all of a sudden, the shameful weight of feeling like a big-fat-jerk started lifting… and, underneath, i started seeing the edge of something solid – a scrap-pile of robotic talking heads with wire-brained mantras, repeating the crux of a dozen bad endings, of a hundred confusions and misanthropic tales.
when the sun had risen & the rest of the day begun, i took the guitar with me into the kitchen where the walls are bright and the tile floor and high ceiling make sound boom, and, instead of playing music, i started taking the scrap-pile out, letting it ding against the metal strings and hollow body of the instrument, which vibrated, in its turn, back into my hands, filling my head and my chest and thighs and rotating in my ankles.
and when i was done, i felt good & wanted more & knew i could do it again and again.