RESEARCH, PART TWO

August 5, 2016                                                                                               afternoon

 
Watching the clouds. There’s a tuft of a puffy one that is separating, like a bit of thin, still-cooking egg white. The clouds give off an air of stillness except for this.

Saw a hummingbird this morning. Fireflies last night. The air is warm. It carries the choir of living things, which includes the yells of victorious corn hole players. The stars are brighter here than most places.
I often listen to music when I write, but these sounds are better.

I wish I was writing this week – this is a great place to write, this farm I’m at with my writer’s group. But I didn’t meet my research goals last week at the O’Neill. Some of the books couldn’t get there in time. This is also a great place to read, of course, and to stare at sheep.

I got to chat with Alan, who looks after them. These sheep don’t earn their keep. No birthing, no shearing, no hay rolling, no bringing the lambs to the slaughter. They’re more like pets. Alan talks at length with very little questioning, because he loves his subject. I lean against the fence and enjoy the sound of his voice. Three of the sheep are curious and venture closer, the rest are skittish. Later, I watched YouTube videos of more sheep, faraway sheep in Northern England, very well groomed and attractive sheep on attractive hills divided by attractive stone walls. What do I need to figure out before I write like my inner life depends on it? I think, just this: What season is my setting?
Oh no. It’s raining. Big unexpected drops.

I made a little tent for my laptop and me, out of my sweater. Let’s see how long this lasts.

I for a little while had a fantasy of being a completely seasonal writer, who writes things set in spring only during spring, etc. Maybe when I’m old and become Wendell Berry. Can playwrights become Wendell Berry? The calm of a naturalist’s mind is so different from the playwright’s, which is engaged in the design of conflict bombs. Skill as a dramatist is in large part just the skill of dragging any situation from good to worst.

Farmland: such interesting space, in between humans and wilderness. It’s the pastoral vase onto which we paint our dreams of leisure and self-sufficiency. It is also where I am pondering immortality, alcoholism, home, and the eternal philosophical / psychological problem of desire.

Ok, it is really raining now. The clouds cracked open. I tried hiding under a small wooden table but no dice.

I’m not sure any of these blog posts should be about anything more than being alive.

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