In a Hemingway’s short story he showed the way to escape the pain of the “nada.”
In order to survive with dignity, to cheat the “nada,” one has to find a place,
a pleasant place, “with the light, a certain cleanness and order.”
I am in now in a new place in this small city of Annapolis.
I like where I’m living. There is music in the many bars up and down West Street all through the evening. (Leonard Cohen reference.) Sliding doors open for me as I approach and the only thing missing is a doorman or the pleasantries of a young woman to say; “Good evening Mr. Brookman, have you had a busy day?”
(Simon & Garfunkel reference.)
I enter an elevator, take it to the top floor. The closest I had to an elevator since being in Annapolis, was when I had a dumb-waiter at an Annapolis restaurant … (Excuse the pun.)
Exiting the elevator and walking down the hall to my place, coming and going, it feels like a hotel. That’s a great thing to me because I always write well when feeling “on-the-lam.”
I spent 27 years having a home, a family, storm door, white picket fence, insurance policies, yard work, which I bribed my neighbor to do with gallons of wine and liquor.
Then, when it was gone, I disappeared for a couple of years to where no one knew me, and started writing again after many years where it had been a dream deferred.
I started writing when I was a teenager and was paid at the age of 17 for the first-rights to publish one of my poems. A hefty sum of $25 dollars and the Maryland State Poetry Award went with it.
I am much older now but worked on, studied form, writers, poets, and the art of writing over the years while I was living the so-called “American Dream” of a home, family life and responsibilities for others. I was still preparing for when I was “chosen.”
As I said, when I lost everything, what was left was the one thing that was always there.
My words took form and I found my writer’s voice.
My voice where a reader can say, “Paul or El wrote that.”
I write poetry and prose or things I consider throw away pieces like this that will not hold the test of time but are entertaining and are more conversational about me.
Yes, a few loyal readers and friends want to know what I am doing. Want to root for me and what I am doing with my art. Some want to know some questions about me such as; “Is wrestling really fixed?”
What I’m telling you is be aware, if you are interested, this is a promo for you to be aware of more things to look for from me to read during your summer.
Found I have many special readers, friends, and family. This is my small, smart growing audience, much like the audience built for young comics during those days at El Brookmans.
Now, I know how good I am and it is bursting out of me and I have been chosen. (Charles Bukowski reference) What was once free, I am ready to have a $3 dollar cover charge at the door (Another El Brookman reference.)
My apartment is a one bedroom, living room, kitchen, with 10 foot ceilings and plenty of space, where I escape the “Nada.”
When I look out my windows I can see many roof top buildings with American and Maryland flags to remind me where I am.
Joseph Campbell wrote and talked about following “your bliss.”
This feels more than right for me.
Words come easy here, feels very prolific.
This mundane task of arranging belongings and furniture has yet to be done, and may take longer than I expected.
As you can tell, the first thing I have unpacked, are my words.