the crows: quiet as shadows

Posted by Daniela Elza on Nov 15 2009

The trees outside my window have lost their leaves. The rain drips down the gutters and eves. I have not heard the crows today. It is foggy and quiet. I have tried and am tired of looking at my manuscript. And I could feel like I am at a stand still, and stuck. But I will not let it get to me. I know this November time— with its quiet rains, its short dimmed grey days that can last for weeks, this premonition of winter.
A day like that can be very productive. You can be productive in an unproductive way. Like sleep while listening to the rain and resting in the certainty that something is cooking, something is bound to come through. Or get lost in some poetry, a novel, music etc. Just as I am writing this post a friend related how he got jump started to write some more after a soak in the tub and reading Neruda’s “new” book World’s End (originally published in 1969; published this year again by Copper Canyon Press).

Or you can be productive in what we tend to consider productive ways: whip up a submission to a place you have been meaning to send to. You can write. Yes, write. Something. Anything. You may be surprised. I have not done enough of that lately. In October pretty much every weekend was so busy that it felt I kept going for three/four weeks in a row without a break. And that is the way we break. Toward the end of the month I really could feel it.

I have felt the need for the unproductive productive time. The time where we re/juvenate, re/charge, re/claim silences, and spaces that nurture us. So that is what I am doing today: inbetween the raindrops and the kids’ calls.
I am also trying to get one submission out a week, if I can manage. I have not done too well lately, but knowing I should be doing one a week keeps the pressure on. That way I may end up with two or three a month. A couple of places I ran into this weekend and wold like to share with you. The Raven Chronicles: A journal of art literature and the spoken word and Full of Crow. The Raven Chronicles does themed issues. Full of Crow/Poetry does not need to be about crows. I did send them something with crows, since I am minding my crows these days. With a name like that how can I resist the temptation? And then there is R.A.I.N.

The rain drips and drips down and down the gutters and eves. And the crows have been quiet all morning. What do they do on a day like this? I want to know. And I also want to know what do you do on days like these? Beautiful, dark, mixed up, as if morning is already night, as if we will never climb out of bed for being sick, or tired, or discouraged, or just refusing to get up because it feels so good. Or maybe you are like me still in bed with coffee and computer writing into the void of grey. And hey, I just saw two crows take off from the bare trees, quiet as shadows.

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