Morning, Muse

Aahhh sleep. Escape hatch from the world. Bestower of fresh perspectives. Solver of riddles too elusive, too complex for open eyes and active brains.

My sleep reveals nothing so dramatic as Einstein’s (theory of relativity) or Watson’s (double-helix DNA structure) or my brother’s (legendary in the family for his vivid nocturnal adventures). I only get the odd encounter with David Duchovny to solve an X-File or countless puzzling wranglings with malfunctioning elevators and unclimbable stairs.

But that first, early morning awakening is a revelation. That drowsy slumber, though often rudely evoked by pestilence in feline form that is only briefly daunted by curses and swats, is where my muse likes to visit, whispering ideas, reminding me of what the day ahead might bring, helping me put life in perspective. Most of my post inspirations come from the morning muse, so I try to entice her to stay as long as possible. That requires walking a fine line between not getting too engaged by the mundane — that article I need to write or that call I need to prep for or those walls that still need painting — and staying cognizant enough to hear what she’s telling me. Often I forget what she whispers. Trying to scribble it down only means losing her for that day, which I am loathe to do.

Fortunately, she’s patient, sometimes murmuring the same message over and over each day until I finally absorb it. But she’s also fussy. She hides from alarm clocks, yet disdains late, sleep-sated risers. It must be early morning. It must be naturally (or cat-devil-) induced half-slumber. It must be dark or with only the faintest hint of dawn. Cold air is better than warm. Silence is golden.

I love her so much, I’m willing to accept her terms, grateful for whatever advice she has to give, whatever creative energy she’s willing to spark, whatever realization she bestows of how truly blessed I am.

What are your muse’s terms? Does she come when you’re running, driving, lost in knitting or raking or chores? Is she so demanding? Do you have ways to encourage her to come more often? I’m always calling my muse, but she doesn’t tend to answer when I ask, only when I’m least able to resist and most open to accept what she has to say.

Hmmmm, that last bit sounds familiar. Kind of like another spirit force I can think of whose name I often call but who prefers to answer in His own sweet time. Are they one and the same?

This post sure took an unexpected turn…I better sleep on this one.

And if tonight my soul may find her peace
in sleep, and sink in good oblivion,
and in the morning wake like a new-opened flower
then I have been dipped again in God, and new-created.
                                                          ~ D. H. Lawrence


  1. Mel L said,

    Friday, November 16, 2007 at 10:13 pm

    I don’t think I have a muse. If I do, I didn’t recognize her and kicked her out for her insolence and laziness years ago. A shame, really. What have I missed?

    Re: that other spirit force–yep, I can’t help thinking they’re inextricably linked. I can only hear Him when I’m being still, patient, and actively listening. So difficult a state to achieve in today’s world! Yet absolutely necessary.

  2. WritingbyEar said,

    Friday, November 16, 2007 at 11:03 pm

    Well, you must be something special if you can do all the creative things you do without a muse! Must be that other spirit force at work.

  3. Mel L said,

    Tuesday, November 20, 2007 at 9:19 pm

    You are too kind. I’ll start trying to re-establish contact with the muse, if she’ll still speak to me. ; )

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