The process of writing, any form of creativity, is a power intensifying life.
Rita Mae Brown, Starting from Scratch
You’ve certainly heard about this past weekend’s mass killing at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida.
My Facebook feed was filled with reports, anger, rants and weary pleas for change.
Too many events in the recent past leave me feeling frustrated, sad, depressed, and worried for my grandsons’ futures. But most of all, they leave me feeling helpless.
Helpless to make a change, to fix it, make it better, or just plain make it go away… But other than sign petitions hold congressional representatives to account, and vote, can I–or you–do?
In moments of rejection, loss, grief and helplessness, it is easy to end up feeling like the woman on this 5 of Cups card, with her back against the wall, gripping tightly the two cups that remain whole while mourning the three broken ones on the ground before her.
Why would this card show up as the Gift, especially after the events in Florida?
Because of those two remaining cups that she grips so tightly. For me, those cups are hope and imagination.
Even as you and I mourn the loss of life, grieve the violence and hatred that so mars each day, we are gifted with the power to make a choice…
To remain huddled with our backs against the wall, grieving and bitter, protecting what we can hold onto, OR…
To step out and into the world with the hope and imagination of our creative gifts.
It starts each day in your studio or office. You work your creative magic—whatever it is—creating with deep commitment to what you have imagined, moving idea or inspiration into form. You work at it consistently, competently, compassionately. Each day, every day.
I don’t care whether you write silly sonnets or impressive sagas, paint icons or draw cartoons, compose symphonies or film trailers, act in comedies or act as parents.
Every time you step away from the wall, holding out those cups of hope and imagination, each creative act pushes away the broken glass and holds out two cups filled with imaginative ideas and inspiration for compassionate, clear, constructive solutions to the challenges of today, and with the hope and potential for a better tomorrow.
After you’ve given blood, donated money, signed petitions, written or called your congressional representative…
Refuse to sit with your back against the wall. You have the power to make a difference. With your stories and pictures and songs and whatever way you express your unique self in a world that sometimes seems to have gone mad.
Start there—doing your creative work.
Even as the tears fall.