Life in the Lost & Found



It happened. My newest blog was complete, I had read it through twice. Spellcheck, a few grammatical corrections, image ready to be inserted- I was in business.  My finger clicked the wrong button. BOOM. About 700 words of carefully phrased text lost in the wind. Retracing my steps was futile, no amount of backtracking or denial of what had just happened was gonna get it back. LOST IN THE WIND. Just like that.

I cried. Straight up. I know it sounds childish, but I wept like a 5 year old in frustration for those words I’d never re-utter, at least not the same way, and certainly never as eloquently as I had crafted them originally.  We’ve all been there in some form or another, and it’s certainly the nightmare-plight of every writer since the invention of computers.  Before technology there were pens and paper- I guess the biggest threat to writers then were hungry dogs and hurricane winds. I would’ve even accepted some regurgitated paragraphs at that point.  Who cares about a little saliva? As long as they were legible.

After my blubbering session, I pulled myself together.  There was no other option.  These moments prove to be incredible excercises for the Art of Letting Things Go.  FACT: the words were gone and impossible to retrieve. Embracing that rather than resisting it was the Universe’s push n’ pull way of giving me a little cuddle, and then I had to laugh. C’est la vie.

Being a documenter and a songwriter for so many years, I’ve run into varying degrees of the 1,2,3-GONE effect. You’re working out an idea on paper, you’re on a roll, you’re hot on the trail of what you think at the time is the most profound, perfectly worded phrase you’ve ever recorded to date.  It’s there in your brain, just about at your fingertips or captured in ink and POOF! It dissolves like salt in a glass of water.  Next comes that empty space in the gut, and we mourn what we may never articulate in the same way again.  It’s the unspeakable fizzling out of a firework-thought, and it happens more often than I care to remember.

Once the initial loss is grieved and accepted, there’s nothing left to do but throw up our hands and say “oh well”. Right? I mean we can’t get it back, and maybe that’s ok.  Perhaps it’s just as perfect a thought or an idea having never manifested itself in print. I like to believe that it is still floating there in suspended glory, being absorbed by the collective, forever-illuminated in the boneyard of lost words.  It makes you wonder what worlds of thought and expression have slipped through the cracks of peoples memories.  There is something beautiful in the wondering…

That being said, while writing this I’ve pressed “save draft” about eight times.  Live and learn.


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