Writing my way through the A-to-Z blogging challenge, I’ll be using manicules (those pointing finger symbols) to direct your attention to something I’m pondering that delights or interests me. Each entry is somehow related to an unusual, obscure, or simply charming to me word.
D is for…
daedal – 1) ingenius, skillful, intricate, artistic. 2) adorned with many things. From Latin, from Greek, first recorded English usage 1590.
Obviously this is a tip of the hat to Daedalus of Greek mythology, the genius architect and creator. Daedalus was basically imprisoned by King Minos after creating an inescapable labyrinth for a Minotaur. He eventually planned an escape with his son Icarus using wings made of feathers and wax.
I had a pretty superficial grasp of Daedalus from basic mythology study, but my interest and curiosity deepened after reading Jennifer Saint’s novel Ariadne. I confess I’m really happy to see the interest and current popularity in retelling foundational stories from the female perspective.
But that aside, I’m fascinated by highly creative, multi-skilled people and always delight in peeks into their minds, and maybe if possible, their diaries, journals, and studios. I know I’m not the only one curious about this – almost everyone I know is. I’m always interested in the creative process of others – not just what they’re creating, but how they view and experience their creativity.
Friends who have known me for any length of time know I’m passionate about many things, and love having multiple projects going at once. To me that feel like an abundance of wonderfulness, allowing me to choose to follow my heart in any direction it wishes to go in the moment. And I confess, too, that I have far more inspirations and ideas than time. Which is why I also keep idea journals going. The biggest delight for me is that I set them aside when full, and then “re-discover” them later, and it’s like finding treasure anew.
Some time ago I uncovered an idea journal that I hadn’t seen in years. What a delightful find. Here’s a peek at it.
Just the sight of it delights me. Battered and worn and stuffed beyond belief – filled way beyond capacity and therefore needing to be tied. But oh, the fabulous ideas that are housed in there. To give you an idea of how much I treasure my idea books, it’s with only a small amount of tongue-in-cheek that I call them Idea Reliquaries. Some of the ideas are as sparkly now as they were when they first occurred to me. And some feel more like core seeds that I’m a few generations from at this point, but I can so see the connection. And of course there are some ideas for projects that just don’t delight me anymore. The energy isn’t there. Now those I’m willing to release. But even thinking about that makes me smile at myself. I’m willing to release an idea for a project that I haven’t yet begun. I don’t think that counts for much of a release.
So you see how slippery this is for me.
I don’t want to release projects, just push them into the not-yet-completed pile. I can laugh at myself about this, but I can also wonder about the graspiness of it. The greed of having a stash of projects so large that I can’t possibly get to them in a reasonable amount of time. I wonder what this need of surplus says about my fear of creative drought.
Rather ironically one of John O’Donohue’s poem showed up for me recently, and this bit is so relevant:
In the out-of-the-way places of the heart, Where your thoughts never think to wander, This beginning has been quietly forming, Waiting until you were ready to emerge. For a long time it has watched your desire, Feeling the emptiness growing inside you, Noticing how you willed yourself on, Still unable to leave what you had outgrown.
The photograph above is an extreme closeup of purple milkweed. According to floriography, the Victorian language of flowers, butterfly weed, a type of milkweed, meant “let me go.” My hope for all of us is that when it’s time to release things, the result is more grace-filled and with less drastic results than feathers melting off soaring wings.
And what about you? Have something daedal you’re celebrating? Have something you’re ready to release? Ever wish to have wings? Do tell – you know I love to hear.