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June 30, 2008
Sometimes an eMo dies before it is born. Sometimes a good first paragraph stubbornly refuses either to marry or reproduce; it just sits there on the screen.

As we prepare to move to Italy for a year, things which have been out of reach are becoming possible. Like taking my Martha Stewart Living collection to the recycling center, for instance. I can do that. I save them, but I don't use them. Maybe I'll read an article about making my own marshmallows, when I'm in that mood, but I know the truth: I will never make my own marshmallows. I don't even like marshmallows. I can let them go.

Now, that's a decent beginning. But I wrote one about tying up loose ends not long ago, and I don't like to repeat myself. Today, I can't seem to get beyond the marshmallows.

Mary is all legs and blonde wig. Her German accent and the timbre of her voice are a riot. Her eyeshadow is turquoise. She owns the stage whenever she appears. Did you ever think that she could do this, all those years ago? Q asks me after the show. I tell him that I've always thought Mary could do anything.

Well, that's an intriguing beginning. I could write an eMo about Boeing Boeing. About watching an actor I directed as a teenager on Broadway as an adult. But then what?

Well, there's always the weather.

I slept through a heavy storm last night, I guess -- I must have been wearier than I thought. This morning, water stands in little puddles on the flat roof over the kitchen, and the Black-eyed Susans out front lie flattened against the ground.

But somehow I feel a list of garden casualties coming on after this beginning, and just thinking about it makes me tired. Maybe that's it; maybe I'm tired. I've barely had time to set down my suitcase since returning home on Friday. Maybe there's nothing left inside until some rest and some space enable the production of more.

Of this we can be confident: there is always more. Maybe a little rest is needed, but the well never runs dry. As long as there is a world and people in it, as long as there are things for which to be grateful and things for which to long, as long as there are things in which to rejoice and things to regret and things that are just plain weird, there will be words to write about them. If not today, tomorrow. So we pick up our pens every day, just in case, and we don't fret much about our Muse and her whereabouts. We cut her some slack. So what if she's an allegorical figure? She just needs a break sometimes, like all the rest of us.
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