So…nothing. Blackness. Dark. Just nothing there.
It is the dark of blindness. I cannot see anything.
In the desperate need to find something to write about, I think of black some more. This makes me think of Suzanne Vega’s song “I Never Wear White.”
What an awesome song.
It just sort of rips out of the starting gate. I wear black, she says. Black, black, black, black.
Standing beside Vega as she rhapsodizes about black is Gerry Leonard, who has these great little guitar solos throughout. It’s just such a great song.
Blackness also makes me think of “You Want it Darker,” by Leonard Cohen. It was one of the last things he released. He was over 80 when he recorded it, and it’s just such a great meditation of facing death.
I remember, years and years ago, when I went to the planetarium with my grandmother, and how a sky show began with total blackness. I remember my grandmother saying “wow…I can’t even see my hand in front of my face.” Those were good times; my grandmother always took me to great places when I stayed over at her house for the weekend; she was always thinking of new places for me to go, new things to do, and when I think of great places I went as I child, I’ll always think of her.
Nothing to write about. Blackness. Darkness. Or maybe not darkness. Maybe bright, bright white.
Maybe this nothing is the blindness that occurs in the book and movie “Blindness,” in which people succumb to an illness that makes their entire vision become a sea of white.
Or maybe this nothing is the prison in the film “THX 1138,” a vast, endless sea of white, stretching to infinity, in which people wander for the rest of their lives, meeting people ever so often, and then continuing to wander. Just an endless sea of white, this prison. Nothing there but white…no words, no sentences, no paragraphs.
Or perhaps this utter lack of anything to write about is a small point of blackness.
A smudge made by a pencil point. A spilled bit of ink. A piece of cigarette ash.
Or maybe it’s a bright point of white light. Maybe the zone of nothing to write about is actually the beginning of the universe, where all things begin. Maybe, in fact, this nothingness is just a sort of compressed somethingness, where the right catalyst can cause an explosion of ideas.
Maybe it’s necessary, when I’m in this world of nothing, to look around and see if there is indeed nothing. When I am in this blank space, alone with myself, there are often places that my mind goes where it doesn’t go when I have something specific to write about. When I have nothing, little things take on significance, and sometimes become the springboard for ideas.
I walk around in this world of nothing, and have nothing but the things I’ve brought with me. No, there are no words here, but I have words in my mind, and ideas. Free of any distractions, I can hold those ideas, take a look at them—for I can see them, even if it is dark here—and think about how I can turn them into something worth writing about.
Maybe there is something in nothing.