Tag Archives: dreams

Deep in the forest

The Clearing

Deep in the forest there’s an unexpected clearing which can be reached only by someone who has lost his way. The clearing is enclosed in a forest that is choking itself. Black trunks with the ashy bear-stubble of lichen. The trees are screwed tightly together and are dead right up to the tops, where a few solitary green twigs touch the light. Beneath them: shadow brooding on shadow, and the swamp growing.

But in the open space the grass is strangely green and living. There are big stones lying here as if they’d been arranged. They must be the foundation stones of a house, but I could be wrong. Who lived here?

No one can tell us. The names exist somewhere in an archive that no one opens (it’s only archives that stay young). The oral tradition has died and with it the memories. The gypsy people remember but those who have learnt to write forget. Write down, and forget.   The homestead murmurs with voices, it is the center of the world. But the inhabitants die or move out, the chronicle breaks off. Desolate for many years. And the homestead becomes a sphinx. At last everything’s gone, except the foundation stones. Somehow I’ve been here before, but now I must go.

Tomas Transtromer, The Clearing

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Dreams remind us that there is a treasure locked away somewhere, and writing is the means to try and approach the treasure. And as we know, the treasure is in the searching, not in the finding. Hélène Cixous

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fear of writing

I am afraid of writing . . . because when I write I am always moving toward the unarticulated, the dangerous, the place where the walls don’t hold. I don’t know what’s there, but I am pulled toward it. Is the wounded self the writing self? Is the writing self an answer to the wounded self? Perhaps that is more accurate. The wound is static, a given. The writing self is multiple and elastic, and it circles the wound. Over time, I have become more aware of the fact that I must try not to cover that speechless, hurt core, that I must fight my dread of the mess and violence that are also there. I have to write the fear. The writing self is restless and searching, and it listens for voices. Where do they come from, these chatterers who talk to me before I fall asleep? My characters. I am making them and not making them, like people in my dreams.   Siri Hustvedt A Plea For Eros

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