Tuesday, July 12, 2011

I Digress... The World of the Essay

I notice while writing essays my mind enters fully, another landscape. I am not talking about essay, essays—but the true essay, or personal essay, as Montaigne would have it, the essay as an attempt, a try. “I am myself the matter of my book,” he said. And, oh, let me digress…

I notice my mind is filled with thought—as though in trance—sky, bird, cloud, nothing. Rhythm. Silence is selected above all noise. Digress, digress, which is to wander amid the lines as they pile up, as I attempt to get at something, I don’t know yet what. This is essay. Let’s essay, Patrick Madden said during one of his lectures at VCFA, perhaps his first, perhaps it wasn’t even him, but none of this is about the facts, all of it is about experience, existing, being, and the way the work of writing can envelop us so completely that we forget we are merely crafting essays, finding meaning from the layers of our lives, we feel instead like we are more alive somehow, like we are poetic beings floating over summer streets, drifting amid the scents of greasy diner food, Chinese, hot-dog stand and the odd wafting sugary smell blasting out of the Ben & Jerry’s like a fog machine of scent.

Oh, I digress.

Ben & Jerry


Kris Arnason said...

I miss writing. I don't mean writing, writing. I journal daily because I need to be loyal to my wanting soul. I haven't written an essay since the last time an essay was assigned to me. I loved that. I'm thinking about writing a book titled, "The Bright Side of Cancer" and fill it with the perks of cancer (you have to really just make these up but maybe it would cheer someone up some day) The first perk is that you don't have to worry about getting cancer.

Kris Arnason said...


Angela Sparandera said...

Emily! I love this post. I didn't even know you had a blog. I love it.