Trusting in the possibilities

The possibilities are endless.

I look around my room and part of me is overwhelmed. How does it always get this messy? I’m like a kid who doesn’t know to put away his toys, leaving a pile of stuff everywhere I turn.

It’s like that when I sit down to write some mornings. What could I possibly write? It’s not: “I got nothing.” No, it’s: “So many choices!” How do you pick just one toy?

What wonder have I assembled within a couple of steps and an easy reach. Here are books collecting the first 50 editions of Fantastic Four, the first 40 editions of Spider-Man, similar collections of Batman and Captain Marvel and Zot. Not far away are A Treasury of Sherlock Holmes, a collection of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow poetry, all of Edgar Rice Burroughs’ John Carter stories — right here at my elbow is the Emily Dickinson paperback I pulled off the shelf a couple of weeks ago, and Carole King is singing “Smackwater Jack” from the turntable.

Is there a more perfect album of songs than Tapestry? OK, Blue and Judee Sill are also within reach, so I can think of plenty of contenders just in my own collection. But still … “When my soul was in the lost and found, you came along to claim it …”

The robin eggs under our back deck have hatched, and mama is tending what were little fluffballs not long ago but this morning look, amazingly, like little robins.

And what a few weeks ago was a white landscape is now awash with green. It has always been my favorite color, green, speaking as it does of life and warmth and growth.

Sometimes I sit in my chair, pen posed expectantly over the page, and my fingers just hover. It’s not that I don’t know what to write. It’s that the possibilities are endless.

At those moments I have a choice to be frustrated, or I can remember the story of a friend who needed to start work on a promotional video for his nonprofit, but so many things called for his attention, he didn’t know where to begin.

“Just get started,” smiled the renowned actor who had agreed to appear in his video. “The rest will take care of itself.”

And so I send my fingers across the page — or the keyboard as I’m doing now — and see what happens. It’s not magic, it’s just trusting in the possibilities.

I suppose I should pick up some of this mess. What would company think? If I keel over unexpectedly today, how rude of me to leave this for someone else to pick up. It’s like wearing dirty underwear to the emergency room.

Even more important, though, there may be something miraculous waiting to be rediscovered. How cool is that?

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