I’ve know Rita Bregman for a long time, more as an online presence but we have met, and talked on the phone. A displaced New Yorker living just outside of San Fransisco, Rita is a talent writer and good friend.
On this, the last Bornstoryteller for 2011, Rita offers you a poem from her book: On Amethyst Glass: Two Voices, One Song
On Writing in a Cafe
In the process of reading,
you concentrate on the lines,
and the words filter through you
as though through a fine sieve.
You can see them; you can keep a few,
but you don’t really need them.
But the process of writing takes you over,
drives and tortures you,
lets nothing in to save you —
no noise, no time,
no pain, no hunger.
It’s not a casual pick-up,
not a one-night stand.
It’s a long-term, symbiotic relationship.
You are one with your words,
and they with you,
(although you fight a lot),
and it’s a restless world placing words over words, under words,
turning inside out the world of rhythm and sound, time and space
that lives inside.
And you’re never sure if you’ve found that one right word
that will stand-in for your feelings…
…but you damn well know when it’s wrong!
Sometimes in the oddest places
you will become so excited by the combinations,
and so necessary to you are they,
that you will grab a lipstick pencil and an old, used tissue,
or write all around the borders of a road map,
just to see how the words work together….
because they are gifts to try on,
be amazed by,
and held onto because they are yours.
And then WHAM! You’re jolted!
Because someone across the room has dropped a cup on the tile floor
and shattered your concentration in a million pieces,
and you slowly become conscious that you’ve been writing
with a pen borrowed from the waiter
on a napkin,
over a wilted spinach salad,
in a cafe filled with laughing, young men in shorts,
and young women with no make-up reading novels,
and that you are the fossil
they know they will become some day.
Rita Bregman, © 2011