Saturday, December 19, 2009

A Thing About Muses

Writers rely on more than just their own collection of thoughts, experiences and individual souls when they create. We also rely on outside inspiration that can come in a variety of forms. These sources of outside inspiration can be people, songs, films, fictional characters, memories of lucid dreams, nature, whispers from consciousness and countless other possibilities.

The thing about muses is that they don't RSVP or announce their appearance. No, muses prefer to ride in on the breeze of serendipity. You don't know when they're going to sprinkle their stardust into your fingertips. You may very well be taken in by their presence, but not realize they have seduced you into a dance until the last note is written.

The good muses, the ones who become pivotal to our creations, even our existence, return to us at least once or twice. Some of them, we discover, never really left us. The illusion that they left in the first place can leave us feeling empty, frustrated, disillusioned, and spinning in a circle of unfulfillment. We then go about looking for some sort of enchantment, a substitute, an imitation. The problem is you can't control inspiration. It comes when you least expect it.

Muses are, by their very nature, "sneaks." They're disguised, they're shadows that we don't always see, they're contained in things or faces we already think we know. They suddenly appear in moments of reflection or while we're exploring what we assumed was a new discovery.

Muses usually get what they want. A little narcissism doesn't elude them. The wrath for not complying with their wishes is typically abandonment. The jestering ones come back later, taunting us with the "I told you so's." Those of the more benevolent variety wait until you are ready for their message, softly reappearing as a whispered reminder. The ones who in time we realize are but extensions of our own souls, come whenever we call them.

These types of muses are the ones that reside within us. They're never gone, but merely silent observers when we're too busy to appreciate their wisdom, their hope and their magic. They communicate with us in ways we never thought possible. We meet them in dreams, sharing experiences that only time reveals were indeed mutual. We've known them from the beginning, somehow inexplicably. We feel their presence even when their physical form, if they happen to have one, is not before us. Their energy is recognizable only by faith and intuition. It is a familiarity that sweeps its comfort into the depths of where we think we begin as a separate being. It is a hypnotic submission which overcomes our ability to question why. We are simply in a form of obsessive attraction that owes neither an explanation or a resolution.

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