Thursday, January 15, 2004

I Try Harder (Second Best) part 2

Last night at youth group, a 15-year-old girl summed up what haunts my every hour, enervates me to a point of artistic paralysis and yet whets my anthropologic appetite all in one simple sentence: "Every thought I've ever had and everything I've ever done was someone else's idea." The simple thought that who I am is an accumulation of every person and idea since the beginning of time. The knowledge that ideas, just as matter, cannot be created nor destroyed both dehydrates and quenches my creative juices.

This thought nearly crushes my will to write. Anything I could write about has already been said. Every idea has already been expounded upon. All attempts to express my ideas or myself result in merely rearranging the dictionary. Why, then, should I even endeavor to produce anything at all when authors from the beginning of time have only been writing from the knowledge left to him or her by their predecessor?

And yet, if we follow the trickle down effect throughout time, we find gullies and culverts along the way. We find deltas, brimming with fertile silt from converging concepts, running over one another, mingling notions, birthing hybrids, stronger and steadier still. We find separate constellations and solar systems of thought, stemming from a wayside brook. We find new inventions, new ways of saying things, new translations and configurations to match our ever-transforming society, our respective cultures- new every day thanks to the constant battle between conformity and deconstruction.

So, why should I bother writing? Because maybe, just maybe, there is one person out there who teeters on the brink of understanding. Maybe, just maybe, stepping into my random rivulet will wash away the remaining groundwork, allowing them the freedom to topple with reckless abandon into discernment otherwise unattainable. Maybe, just maybe, that person is you. More than likely, that person is me.