Writer’s block can be hard to break
by Rick Watson
Apr 03, 2011 | 1761 views | 0 0 comments | 19 19 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Today I spent most of the morning tapping keys with no words appearing on the screen. That’s what happens when you have writer’s block. I get afflicted from time to time, and normally I can dip into my bag of tricks to tickle the muse and I’m off to the races but that didn’t happen today.

I put on my muse cap, I put on my Space Command 3D glasses, I looked at old photographs and I flipped through my trusty book of quotations — nada.

So I decided to get up and go for a walk. The sun had made a brief appearance but the breeze out of the northwest was chilly, which made goose-bumps pop out on my bare arms, so I stepped back inside and grabbed a jacket.

The dogs were beside themselves because with all the rain, they have not had a decent walk in days. When I opened the back gate it was like the sound of the bell at Green Track, except all four dogs headed in different directions.

The fresh air felt good, especially since it wasn’t heavy with pollen. I got a little pang of guilt when I walked by the creative space and barn because there’s still a lot of work left to do before they can be called “finished.” I picked up the pace and moved down the trail toward our meditation rock which is about 300 yards south of the barn.

As I rounded a turn in the path, a splash of pink caught my eye. It was a wild honeysuckle bush basking in the morning sun just off the trail. The wild honeysuckle is a member of the Azalea family, but these wild plants put the tame ones we planted in the front yard to shame. With only Mother Nature tending them they survive and thrive. I nurse the Azalea’s in our front yard like a sick baby with colic and still some years they are just sad.

The first time I can ever remember seeing a wild honeysuckle was when I took my Grandma Watson to the cemetery to clean the graves. As she sat on a tombstone to rest her legs, and to get a fresh dip of Bruton Snuff, she pointed her long twig of a finger at a beautiful pink bush near the edge of an embankment. It was the color of a chiffon prom dress from 1961. “That yonder is a wild honeysuckle,” she said. “I think they’re the best part of spring.”

I took a photograph of the wild honeysuckle today before walking on. I sat on the meditation rock for a long time, listening to the sounds, taking in the sights and smells of spring. For a while, I didn’t fret about having writer’s block. I thought about lying back on the bed of moss, but I was afraid I might fall asleep and not wake up until summer.

When I made my way home and sat down to write, this story flowed out. It was almost as if Mother Nature had planted the seed herself — well actually, I guess she did.