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Amber Paulen


When in the beginning I gave myself a typewriter and sat myself down to write I struggled. I was writing a book and I was also writing page long treaties most days which were my bread that kept me going. As always true to form I will transcribe as typewritten five years ago.

july nine
full tummy, heads all empty and i don’t care
i haven’t been writing very much lately, some words here and there, but nothing sustaining. if i’m feeling hopeless and shiftless it’s my own fault. but i shouldn’t slack on my writing. if i want to stay alive i have to feed myself, keep my mind healthy which is best done right here. maybe i’m scared of the solitude i endure when i sit here hour after hour, scared that i’ll lose experiences if i remain; when nothing else should be as important as what i can create with my mind, the words i can let flow. so, drown, submerge, whatever must be done or i will no doubt loose what i started. i felt alive when i first started writing, empowered by my creating, but then i felt this was not sustaining enough, but it is. true, my money is running low, but where did the term starving artist come from? i can’t subject myself to the pointlessness of getting a job, then i shall surely drown, surely loose what i have started. i will loose the belief in what i am doing for a fucking lousy buck. i can’t think it’s me vs. society, that does me no good either, well, it’s not that i’m against society for that’s the best point of reference, the best launch into myself, a reflection of a high degree. (Henry Miller says: Everything external is but a reflection projected by the mind machine.) and it’s not as if i need to embrace society either, all i need to do is to reap from it. be the gypsy, take and take, so that one day i may give. i have my own answers, i can’t be afraid to look them in the eye with a penetrating realization. i need to breathe through my words, inhale, exhale, i am. to loose this power would be self-defeating to give in to the other powers without the strength of this one would be just as bad. as much as writing requires that i live inside myself i need to live outside, i need to find the correct balance. i’m 23 years old, living in rome with the infinity of my life before me, limited and unlimited and only the realization of it as such is standing in my way. today i knew i was going to write, yesterday i wanted to but the world got the better of me and then i feel bad, like spending my last money. i can traverse through foreign countries, thinking and self-reflecting all the while but when i choose to settle down, to own things, to have constants, i get lost. when i see a number of things on a continuum of static being i fall into the same. i forget my own becoming, it becomes less important and it isn’t. it is all that i have, however intimidating and tedious. when the outside opposition dwindles, i give in and pronounce that there is nothing to be opposed to because i have failed to see that the biggest opposition i face and will ever face is myself. so, as i wrote in tunisia, here is my bucket. my well is open and tumultuous and all i have to do is to face it, eyes wide shut.

Rome Italy
July 2003


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