Well Up / by Melanie Ida Chopko

Last night I went to listen to Anaïs Mitchell at the Freight in Berkeley, and filled up my well again. I'm trying to make space for the unmapped, incoherent process that always eventually coalesces/congeals into a song. But this is pretty uncomfortable, and it sometimes feels like I'm scrapping the bottom of a well that is dry for good. Luckily I have drawing to distract myself!

And last night I remembered Julia Cameron's notion from the Artist Way that this is the moment to "fill the well" - to go back to what we most love, to the people and pieces that called us into this commitment in the first place. And I hear that call so clearly through Anaïs' songs - to sew together my personal story and the deep story of my time, the personal and the political. To make the familiar mystical, to use poetry and melody to soften borders and turn faces back to look at one another. 

And I remembered how that call is so much more important, sacred, than my anxiety, the imperfect song written so much more contributing than the unwritten perfect song in my mind.

So I'm off to walk around the lake with the dog and make another draft.