like that bobcat

bobcat at the living desert

I want to be like this bobcat.

I want to gnaw on something, to turn it over and over, to let that one thing consume me as I consume it.

I am easily distracted. Nothing holds my attention for long. I flit from here to there, making a note of something so I can come back to it. And then I forget. The notes sit untouched, unremembered, unthought in desk drawers, pockets, and journals.

As I’ve mentioned, the thought of writing more seriously has been niggling at me. Colin and I met earlier this week for the first time in months to share writing. We talked about how similar the practice of writing is to the practice of piano: I wouldn’t expect my piano playing to get any better if I sat down once a week and played a this hymn or that piece. In fact, I’d expect it to deteriorate. Without intentional practice—and intentional practice on a certain piece—my piano playing will drop off.

But that’s what I do in writing: I write what seem like petty little things, unrelated, inconsequential. I don’t spend time with writing. Revising—never! I don’t enter into a piece, feel the characters, the sentences, the themes beside me. They get one measly glance and then I’m bored. I turn the page, pick a different song, close the lid to the piano. Drop the piece of meat and let it lie untouched.

But what if I were like that bobcat? What if I couldn’t let go?

Can I sustain that kind of attention?

(This post is one in a November series for NaBloPoMo, National Blog Posting Month. You can find the rest here!)

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3 thoughts on “like that bobcat

  1. One word: Hagah.

    May you Hagah your writing! This is the Hebrew word that is used for the noise a lion makes while it devours it’s prey, and also the cooing of a dove. It is the word used for meditate in the OT. I’m sure you know this, but I just want to give you well-wishes on your Hagah-ing!

    Love,
    Mariah

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