“Absence thinking.” Now there’s an interesting sounding creative writing exercise: to think and write about what is not there. Its purpose is to maybe shake something loose and get something down on that empty screen. But one has to wonder a little something about that. How on Earth exactly does one go about thinking and writing about something (something?) that is not there? Puzzling.
The answer (or at least the answer that finally shakes loose) is: brainstorm a little! Do the stream-of-consciousness thing by poking around in the shadows a bit and putting down on that big empty screen there in front of you whatever comes to mind. Your readers ought to understand by now how you roll.
Okay, dig in. So for example take…
No, let’s not so for example take. Let’s not so for example go down that old, well beaten time worn path because every time that path is taken by going on about her and how she has been absent just leads to absolutely nowhere. Yes, the hell with all that. A mental image of a cop comes to mind waving people on past a terrible car accident on the freeway advising move along folks! Other than the morbid curiosity of witnessing something gone horribly wrong there’s nothing to see here at all.
Uhm…yeah. But meanwhile, back at the ranch (as they say in the old ‘B’ westerns): the brainstorming stream-of-consciousness thing beat goes on...
1. the state of being absent; "he was surprised by the absence of any explanation"
2. failure to be present
3. the time interval during which something or somebody is away
4. the occurrence of an abrupt, transient loss or impairment of consciousness (which is not subsequently remembered), sometimes with light twitching, fluttering eyelids, etc.; common in petit mal epilepsy
“Absence from those we love is self from self - a deadly banishment.”
“Absence is to love what wind is to fire; it extinguishes the small, it enkindles the great.”
“Absence makes the heart grow fonder.”
Question: Why is it that this little creative writing exercise is so hard when it is abundantly clear that so much of life has been consumed in this very act of “absence thinking?”
Answer: because to love is what wind is to fire and in this particular case it enkindles the great.
~insert deep sigh here~
Here I go; traveling down that same old well beaten time worn path yet once again that leads to absolutely nowhere. So move along folks, because there’s really nothing to see here at all.