This is the first installment of a ten part poetry/prose series I wrote a few months ago titled Hours. I wrote the series over the course of one night into the next morning as a project. Each individual part is titled according to the time at which I began writing the piece and makes for a kind of documentation of my thought process throughout the night. And after much editing, here it is.

Full disclosure: I did not write continuously during that night. There were plenty of breaks for walks, music, YouTube, and, of course, food. 🙂

I hope you enjoy reading each new installment and possibly catch the inspiration to try this for yourself. It was certainly an interesting exercise.

9:48 PM

There was some piece of writing advice I read somewhere that urged, “Write what you fear the most.” I’ve always assumed this simply meant to write in such a way as to be transparent. Honesty has never been much of an issue for me. It’s how I was raised. Well, withholding information isn’t really lying. Story-telling is lying, right?

I’ve always appreciated the complexities of a good story. There has to be a balance of truth and falsehood. Too much truth results in mundane and trite reports; too much fabrication and it becomes unrelateable, valueless. Yet it remains a mixing of dirty water with pure water. Pour the pure water into the dirty and it’s still dirty; pour even a drop of dirty water into the pure, and it’s wholly tainted.

In a way, I’m learning to lie effectively in my studies, convincingly. I’m practicing weaving these two strands into an enveloping blanket held suspended between chair backs in your childhood bedroom, a fort set in another universe.

I also read somewhere that “a writer is a whole world trapped inside a single person.” How much of that world did I write? The saying goes we humans have a story we tell ourselves about ourselves in order to make sense of everything: what we’ve experienced, what’s been done to us, who we are…and hope to be.

So, “write what [I] fear most…” How good am I getting at this story-telling thing? How tightly woven is the canopy of my universe fort? I’m afraid I’ve cast myself as the protagonist to cover up my antagonism. But an antagonist doesn’t have to be wrong, right? It’s just the other side, an opposition, not necessarily bad. Right?


Photo by Larm Rmah on Unsplash

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