“Buildings and bridges are made to bend in the wind. To withstand the world, that’s what it takes. All that steel and stone are no match for the air, my friend. What doesn’t bend breaks. What doesn’t bend…breaks.”
-Ani DiFranco, from “Buildings and Bridges.”
I write about you. I make you “immortal.”
You are *already* immortal.
You think poetry, prose, pretty pictures, peinture, pointillist psalmsongs are something special? Romantic?
But your creative babies, they’re transitory, too. Your creations can be off-putting to some, confusing to others. We’re all magnificent creatures who at once remember everything and suddenly nothing, on and on, again and all over again.
Capture those moments in time, savor the morsels. Yes.
Yummy up on times relived, and keep in mind what sings to you, right now, about those nanomoments. Sure.
Wanting to be immortalized, living for legacy (yours or theirs), it’s a gorgeous hobby and it’s tricky business. It can take you out of the present, it can force you into making different choices in your life and art.It can come off as forced and fake (I mean, are we statues in Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum, or cells in constant motion?).
So I can’t create these things for you, so that we’ll always remember or I’ll never forget. I can pen a little ditty you might sing along with now. I could write a little poem that could ignite little heartsparks now. It might even blaze on up again, just when you need it.
Even the most elegaic novels and podcasts, nostalgic oceans of fiction and facts, always tie right back in to what you’re thinking, now, about them. What’s creation all about if not the back-and-forthing of ideas, right now?
Don’t write those songs for him. Don’t program those beats for her. If the cut of that minimalist sarong you designed’s inspired by that girl from that soiree that one night, that’s cool.
If you tell her and she’ll always treasure your mango-honey-licious rendition of her sweet sashay, so much the better (she might even let you put a ring on it when she finds that out)!
What happens when memories fade and colors run? You’re stuck holding on to what’s ephemeral. Meaning, nothing. Holding on to nothing is a structural impossibility and an exhausting kind of art project.
If you aren’t creating your own work and play for your own pleasure, right now, you are making an appointment for disappointment.*
…which, then, of course could… be metabolized into more art.
*Note: these tips do not apply to goths, punkers or Morrissey.