Suspended Animation

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An entire storytelling/movie genre is devoted to suspense. That avid anticipation, tinged with excitement or fear, is such a compelling feeling that we go out of our way to get it. Do you enjoy suspense? How do you open yourself to surprise?

The feeling is that of being “hung,” suspended in air, in the absence of words when wanting to write. The urge engaged, but stalled, like revving the motor without being in gear. I rummage through topics, seeking novelty, against the background desire for profundity. Meanwhile, I linger with the feeling of suspense, on the edge of something about to happen. There is beauty in the held breath, in the space between urge and fulfillment,  in which I take delight. It sometimes thrills me to linger, to stretch out the yearning and ride that edge.

This post is adapted from my daily intent writing session for January 5, 2018. For more posts in this series, click here:

We put way too much value on completion, on accomplishment, productivity, and fulfillment. The time before success or failure, while the fire still burns, when the reach is still not quite long enough, can be a kind of "suspended animation." But I mean this not as a stasis, or a state of sleep, but as being animated, alive, while in suspense. I strive to live in this space: a space of eager anticipation, ready for surprise, and open to newness of life unfolding in the moment.  

That's where the magic lives: in that beautiful space between desire and fulfillment. When I step into that space in writing, I often get surprised by the words that appear on the screen or page. That's when the muse sings through me. That when I truly feel I am a poet. 

© Nick LeForce
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