I’ve never been asked to write an essay about why I took a particular class before, but I just did— 2,000 words worth. Still fighting the depression. Writing workshops tomorrow, in the classes I’m teaching that I need to produce handouts for. More material to read for other classes. Got up early and did laundry, oh joy.

I hesitate to tell people what I’m feeling when things get this dark. Synthesis has his fingers on the pulse of many threads regarding self-reflective blogging. There is an aspect of “writing oneself into existence” but there is also an element of “exorcising the demons.” Both elements are a part of the writing process itself, not just blogging. So the web has the potential to make people more scattered and chaotic than ever before— if this is the case, why did it take the addition of a temporal element (blogs) to make it come together as a mass communication medium? Writing is usually an attempt to force cohesion where it didn’t exist before. It summons the angel in us all, in the desire to reach out and touch our fellow humans. But what if you don’t want to summon your demons?

“If I exorcise my devils, my angels may leave too”

Tom Waits has his finger on that. Most of my essay dealt with issues of displacement in writing. We displace ourselves from reality when we use metaphors to describe it. We displace ourselves from reality when we make up stories or allegories based in real experiences to give them closure, to force them to make sense. We displace ourselves from telling people what we think when we do little more than link, either by quoting or hyperlink, to the ideas of others. In an odd fashion, we bring ourselves closer to becoming by separating the knower from the known. But there are different levels of displacement. Teasing out the levels of displacement may be part of my project for the class. I haven’t quite figured it out yet, but there’s got to be a way to codify it, to compare types of displacement on a more abstract level.

But maybe not. After all, consciousness is a sort of magic. That’s why I often make comparisons to poetry. A great poem, for me at least, is a poem that is barely held together by the relationships which it attempts to contain. At any moment, it can fly apart into incoherence, if only the slightest link is broken. Nobody likes things that are too easy. The obvious isn’t much fun.

Time for a drive. Over six hours of writing in a row is just too much. The magic idea, however, is neither freaky nor too much. Sometimes, there just isn’t any other explanation.