For this session of #5for5BrainDump I am experimenting with including poetry as a supplement to the standard #5for5BrainDump content. Each day's session is thematic. Each livestream day includes a writing tip and each day has a poem or two. Each summer session follows a theme. This theme is "Journey" which we will take metaphorically and/or actually. The choice is for each person to choose and then follow our word-flow.
One of today's poems is NON-Commitment by Chinua Achebe. My reading of the poem and video may be found underneath my writing, which was done #5for5BrainDump style which means no editing, no forethought, just throwing down words on the keyboard or written on paper stream-of-consciousness. Today's writing was done at the keyboard and took me by complete surprise. (In other words, delightful.)
Read on, beloved, read on...
June 27, 2018: Five Minutes After Chinua Achebe
My heart isn’t cautious at all.
It leaps, willy nilly, constantly if I let it my heart would become the Greg Louganis of..
Wow, really? Am I being honest here?
What has shaped my life the most? Stillbirth, dead-before-arrival and ever since I have dug my heels in and done anything, absolutely anything, to prevent stillbirth again so much so that conception is altogether impossible for me and has been for a very long time.
My heart is so prudent it is asleep.
My soft-intellect, the one most closely related to the heart space is angry now. How dare you, she rears her head and starts pointing that damn finger.
No, she’s right, says the most child-like of the bunch. She’s woefully right. I have been petrified of stillbirth, worst has been since 2011 which she just finally committed to believing this morning when she sat on the porch and wrote her morning pages.
Now the writer me takes over and says, “Friends, this is more than a bit ridiculous. I am now writing of me in the third person from several different self perceptions. The writer me is confused and wants her hands chanting, ‘be specific, how many times must I tell you to BE SPECIFIC!’”
I almost stop writing.
I didn’t expect reading Chinua Achebe’s poem would incite a riot in my head AND heart, my intellect AND spirit it is no wonder I am teetering on the edge of depression daily. Sleep, depression, mania, what shall it be today?
I pause to be sensible and get a prescription filled. At least that is a measurable milestone I can check off my to-do list.
Done and done and I have a choice.
Do I publish this mis-mash of written non-sense or do I act like I’ve got everything under control?
If Chinua could write so beautifully about seminal rage and Biafra and get all those honorary degrees and really, I have no connection with him except reading that one novel back in 1982 and yes, I know more about Africa than most white people, sure.
I’ll hit publish and birth this wackiness and will leave my questions half answered because at least I can make the choice. And show my eccentric side. And smack depression (and her partner-in-crime, my motivation) on the forehead.
For now, I’ll take happy mania and life, thank you Chinua. Thank you.
Julie Jordan Scott
is the founder and creator of 5For5BrainDump. She has been inspiring artistic rebirth since 1999.