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    LithubT Kira Madden3/22/1916 min
    10 reads4 comments
    10 reads
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    • DellwoodBarker6 months ago

      First off, WOW. One of those reads where A Moment of Silence to quietly sip and sit is rather simply and profoundly an honor to this writer.

      Admittedly, I went into this with a crusty old judgement (which might say more about the morning of working with some surrounding anger internally and then allowing waterworks to stream forth in cleansing movement prior to this Wonderful Morning of reading and a Great Cup of Coffee from Our Local Favorite Family) in regards to the headline : “but, of course, writing is therapy!”

      I am thoroughly obliged and grateful to say the writer annihilates that crusty old stuck in the mud “don’t judge a (article) by it’s (headline)” fuddydud that was briefly barking from within.

      A phenomenal and remarkable read.

      The writer acknowledges everything that was in my preconceived judge mental arsenal like this wonderful paragraph:

      An incomplete list of what has actually been cathartic and healing for me: dancing, saying No, sex with women, masturbation, driving through Central Park on 86th Street with my windows down—the slight temperature dip that comes over my arms first, just by being near green, therapy, hypnosis, teaching, activism, feeling spellbound and outside of myself in any movie theater, anywhere; driving parallel to powerlines (especially when they silver like needles in the sun), Charlie Parker and Tracy Chapman and Lester Young and Billie Holiday. My fiancée, Hannah. Road trips with the people I love. Making soup—completing every step until those steps add up to something surprising and nourishing and accomplished.

      The writer makes the opening powerful, empathic and reflection all as does the end.

      In closing, having gloriously been presented a valid perspective in very real, slow, deep fashion: I do really, slowly, deeply believe writing is healing therapy (as is any art - the safest space to unleash what is often deemed unsafe emotions, shadow work, fear filtering, narrative healing) and I believe it is also important to remember (especially with mysterious memories that are left in tatters and questions or seeped in hurt and trauma) that (speaking from experience with my own therapists) We Have the Incredible Healing Power to choose the writing of unsolved mysteries. We can choose which narratives are false or true while being Real and Brave and Visionary and Authentic in Storytelling. As painful as not knowing the ending of the boy left behind banging on the window is in Reality ~ there is an Incredible Balm that pours out when we choose how the Reality of the boy ends. There are psychology books about this and I am experiencing this in Real Life, as well. Finally, it is important to remember that while fiction is often discarded as untruth…there is a Human Being Storyteller behind that who is taking moments of Presence, past, culminating triumphs, suffering, joy, pain, yin, yang - morsels of nonfiction and fitting it All Together in a unique way to make sense of and release the going-ones of the inner and outer worlds.

      I often get chided about “getting lost in too much fiction” and I have gotten angry over it. In my personal experience I can be just as Present dropping into a Fiction book as much as a non-fiction book. It is possible to be Present and Healing and In Therapy when dropping into any book read or art form experience whether critics judge the final product as “good” or “bad”.

      • Peachy
        Reading streak
        6 months ago

        “Writing—both fiction and nonfiction—is simply an attempt at translation”.

        Madden’s article is beautiful in its discussion of writing—and later—magic. The notion of “illusion” was beautifully built upon these two ideas. In the end, I am left with the screams of the boy. This is a reality that is now shaped by my response.

        What an insightful—and painful—read.

    • Pegeen
      Top reader this weekReading streakScoutScribe
      6 months ago

      I found this article very well written. The opening scene is brilliant and a set up for this author’s hypothesis that writing is not therapy. Exceptional explanation.