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The Practice of Method and Madness

We pass down a street. There, the seventh house sits where Uranus and Mars are ajar to one another. You can hear the shifting shelves of the grieving soul of one writer who’s trying to come up with the perfect piece for his Expressions blog, scouring to look at past influencers from Hemingway to Poe, but they have grown silent to him.

The writers he had delved into have receded into their closed pages. How must he make a fuzzy approach to his work! What balance could be found again? His friend, the filmmaker, reached out to him. He was happy to know that someone was in the same boat. But what next? He sat down at his computer, hands at the keyboard. Best be careful, he thought. These keys bite if we don’t watch it.

He began to type a recommendation for certain books he had read recently. But where did that lead him? Another dead end to the endless corridors to his ever-condensing room. No moon shone, the voices had stopped, there was a reason why. He rose from his desk and searched his room for a sign.

Hoping for a ghost or monster to creep from behind his walls, he was met only with rubble. Stone crumbled in his hand. A broken heart and stress. He sought to find his way again. The trail that the writer walked was a foggy path that he carved for himself, now lost.

He heard the shrieks of an otherworldly being trying to find his scent. He knew what it was. He ran down the corridors and castle walls of his room, looking for the gothic he craved. But the writer found it difficult to keep the walls from imploding.

Screams from those he once loved, the terror he bore. Where was he to go next? The whispers of a new title for a project crawled into his ear. He heard the advice of so many pulling him down. The voices… they were back with retribution.

They walled him off. Like the four walls before, the ones he put up for himself. Now he bled with sadness. Then the silence took shape with eyes to glare and elongated fingers pinning him against his wall.

Looking into its eyes, the silence heard the lion roar within and a crayfish creeped onto the bed. “With pride comes caution,” they both said. The silence let him go, and the writer opened his eyes. He was there in his study. His journals were still there. The books of Fitzgerald and Abbey and Snyder lay on top of his desk.

It was time to come out of hiding again. To open the door, he turned and looked at his walls. He called to the genius that watched over. “This is a job for both of us to do. But with or without you I’ll do it.” The genius made its presence known. “If we’re to strive, we are to combine.” He stretched his arm out. “Now take my hand.” And he felt something take hold.

The silence was answered, the cold washed over the room, a smile, and he began to write. Not of damnation, but of a method. One where he could understand the grounding to keep up with the clouds and not lose them.

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