Dillard Days


I don’t have much time. I’ve stared the wall over and now the day, or at least, the light of day has passed. Now the dwindling decline, long past the hour of creativity. There is a car lurching outside. I wonder who mans or womans the wheel, but I don’t really. I couldn’t care less. All I have is the bare wall I’ve bored with my gaze all day and the computer screen filled with half-finished documents and a deadline for a not-too-far-in-the-distance dissertation that I haven’t got the heart nor muster nor thrust to write. There’s just the long blank white, that I have wretched upon, again and again the day through.


Now that the sunlight is a memory, and returns only tomorrow for another go-around I have nothing but the darkness falling, the darkness staying, nothing but the darkness now to turn my mind to and hope to some extent it carries some other shade I can nip myself into, burrow a little space for to burn some hope, to hold my hands around – to warm, to feel. It’s been a while since I wrote anything of any sense, nor anything that was even half-good; and this feels like only reaching, reaching for that goodness and that clarity that always feels beyond, somewhere in that vacant space, somewhere in that long white wall beyond the foot of the bed.


I am in bed, have I said that? I’m lying in this bed, duvet over my legs, quite warm. I’ve been here for hours. And I’ll be here for days, forever. I don’t know you Annie Dillard but I know enough to know you as a truth person – when you said that how we spend our days days is of course how we spend our lives, I felt I would carry that around forever. And forever I have, but it’s been more a noose to me than a call to arms. As the day splits beyond its zenith and I’m lying in bed staring at a white wall, my fingers unmoving above the keys, I see only that my life is spent like this because my days, my days are, my days are spent like this, and your ever-so-perfectly-spot-on truth reminds me I’m sleeping through it. Soon it will actually be time to sleep, but I won’t. I will only breathe the air dying slow.


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