I’ve got too much on my mind just now to write even a sentence, let alone a post. I know, because an hour or so ago I gave it a go and—well, I had to leave that sentence be. One or the other of us—the sentence? Its author? Hardly matters, other than that one or the other of us is a half-brick shy of a full load. In a better time and place that sentence (and a caboodle of others) will (presumably) match up again with something worth saying, but the time, the place—ain’t now.
So … how to keep my hand in? I mean, I’d hate to have it slip away all over again. (I did, after all, begin this year with “For pity’s sake. It’s time to just write.” But methinks I need to take the easy way out and borrow someone else’s words. Having now just landed, half by accident, at a Goodreads page devoted to Walt Whitman, I offer this:
“This is what you shall do; Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to every one that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy, devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown or to any man or number of men, go freely with powerful uneducated persons and with the young and with the mothers of families, read these leaves in the open air every season of every year of your life, re-examine all you have been told at school or church or in any book, dismiss whatever insults your own soul, and your very flesh shall be a great poem and have the richest fluency not only in its words but in the silent lines of its lips and face and between the lashes of your eyes and in every motion and joint of your body.”
That’s old Walt for you, all right.