When she had first brought the new journal home, the empty pages had
made her think of fields of fresh snow, those white expanses that she
had awakened to as a child when they visited the countryside in
winter, flat white surfaces bordered by stark lines of brown and black
trees, and stretching out on all sides to meet the white of the winter
sky. She had run her hands along the clean surfaces of the book’s
pages and imagined that words would flow easily onto them, would mark
them with the evidence of her continuing life as inevitably as those
fields of snow had been marked by her footprints when she crossed
them. A page for each day, the filling of it as straightforward as
walking across a field—but as she had faced the first page with pen in
hand, she had hesitated, hadn’t known how to start. With the details
of her daily life? The time she awoke? The dream that woke her? The
egg that she had eaten for breakfast? And if so, in what language? The
languages of her childhood? The English of all that stretched ahead?
The pen hovered over the page but didn’t land.
~from Nancy Richler’s forthcoming book, The Imposter Bride
January please me. It offers unlimited potential and possibly. It
promises all that and more.
Beginnings, though, terrify me. Striving for perfection often
paralyzes me with a kind of numbness. I won’t attempt something if I
think I will fail. I buy journals and leave them blank. I wonder, when
will I learn that my ink marks and snow tracks matter? Yet there is
beauty to be found there. My marks say I was here. Blank pages and
pristine snow banks are not gifts you can pass on.
So here I am saying goodbye to an old year and welcoming in the new.
I’ve written the first post and with that we’ve started our fourth
year of collaboration. This year I hope to write with abandon; fill
every blank page I can find with paint, ink and crayon. I want to know
the shimmer of a good photo through my camera lens and live with that
feeling for awhile. I want to let go of what weighs me down; stop
perfection’s strangle hold. And at the urging of my son–take a risk.
May this year be inspiring for all of us.