Wednesday, April 19, 2017
Da book about the prison writing workshops is coming along. It aint half bad, and it's still waiting to take the next step, the final word on what the workshops mean, to the inmates and to me. The reality of prison terrifies me: deadness, violence, lowest common denominator, brokenness, loss. I question whether or not I can really, honestly make a dent in that. I question my motives, my understanding, my effectiveness, my tendency to deceive myself, to take shortcuts when it comes to easy answers. I don't trust myself to really look at what is happening and make something comprehensible out of it. Can anything I do really make a difference in someone else's life? And can I say with any confidence what that is or how it happened? I have hunches and want to make up tidy little theories about life narratives being re-written, about opening to new possibilities, about the power of literature and creative expression to foster empathy and wider horizons, but is all of that just wishful thinking, just smoke blowing out the ass a hopeful, lost, obscure dude who happens to love and respect the power of language?