The loss of a good idea is like losing a good woman.
Ideas come to me in fleeting moments. Sometimes it's when I am in a compact subway car with a rank odor floating around. Or it comes to me when I engage in a conversation that is droll and boring. That idea comes to me as a welcome diversion. Or sometimes it occurs in a tranquil moment, when I sit and observe in Central Park. Massive skyscrapers stand as a rude contrast to the majestic trees and everyday people milling about.
The idea swims and wriggles her way past your defenses like a slippery eel, giving you that electric charge. Some lack substance and are easily flushed away. Some are a bit more substantive, but then they become corrupted and become too ludicrous, too taxing. A faint imprint is left, but is easily covered up and its on to the next.
Then those real special ones burrow deep within you. You are unable to let this one go. She is tenacious and warm, muting the din around you and encapsulating you entirely. Soon, you can't let her go. She threatens to take over you completely. She is so good that you want her for yourself, no one else. When someone wants you to divulge exactly what's back there, you glare at the person and let them know that she is MINE. You know people would steal her and treat her badly. They would run away with her bearing good intentions but end up ruining her, eventually either discarding or pimping her.
You can't keep her to yourself. You have to put her into words, draw everyone else a portrait, make music with her or dance with her or maybe do it all. People look at you with admiration and envy, and there you are, reveling in the laudation, all coming to you because of your idea, your woman. Because without her, none of this would have been possible.
But that's in the distant future. That's hoping you get an idea as good as the one you had that one time. That one time when she came to you, raw and pure. Willing and ready to be plucked. She nestled deeply in every crevice and pore, waiting for your response. But you were too selfish, too cold, to give her any serious thought. Surely another will come like this. They always do, you say to yourself. You never bother to nurture her, giver her any real thought. She is just in the back of your mind, and when you are ready, that's when she can come out.
But then she is gone. No warning, no sign, she just isn't. Your brow is severely lined, your eyes are squeezed tight, trying to get her back. And you know she was so good. She was set to change everything. You watch old TV shows, you walk by the same parks, you try and retrace your steps, anything to get that old feeling back. That memory, that spark back in your head. You can't even describe her to your friends anymore. They had been asking you about her, trying to at least admit her existence. Now you can't even be sure about that anymore.
As the days wane and the nights darken, so does your mind. It's not all over, by any means. Many fine pieces come to you and the praise is still high. But all that truly know you, will always see your loss. As you near your end, you will always remember that one that was once so hard to find, has now finally left you with a destitute mind.
This post was originally published in the Black Star Blog