I’ve been working on a major project, moving my bedroom upstairs to my attic space (where my office is). I’ve got the bed upstairs now, and I’ve been working on organizing all of my books and clearing a small storage space, so I can turn it into a walk-in closet.
In the process of going through my books, I’ve been finding old journals. Beautiful journals, most of them — leather embossed with detailed Celtic knotwork and animals; dark brown leather deeply embossed with the three Graces, voluptuous and elegant; a hardback journal with bright flowers; an old leather journal from my teenage years embossed with a unicorn, and more.
Many of these journals have a few pages of writing, most of it rather embarrassing. But the majority are completely blank, untouched.
I’ve never been good at keeping a journal in the first place — one only has to look at the dates on this blog to see that (I’m embarrassed to say).
But part of the reason these elegant little books stay blank is their beauty. The loveliness of the journals themselves is somehow daunting, overwhelming.
It’s an insecurity, I suppose. I guess I feel that the special-ness of the journal somehow seems to demand special writing, important writing, beautiful well-written text or poetry that does justice to the loveliness of the book itself. I am humbled by the vessel, unsure I can live up to it’s precious elegance.
So instead I fill up pages and pages of cheap spiral notebooks, humble books that don’t care if my writing is as mundane as the cheap paper.
And yet I’m drawn to these lovely books. I wander back and forth in front of the journals at Barnes and Noble, the Renaissance Festival, online at Amazon, or especially Oberon. I want to put my words in these lovely books. But when the moment of truth arrives, clutching my best fast-moving rollerball pen, I am at a loss for words.