But then I think about all that is unsaid. The space between the superlative language of acknowledgements pages.
I have written and rewritten these fragments over years. Slashed away at these scraps, re-ordered them, put them away in a drawer for years, my book of disquiet. Sent out this manuscript in its differing variations to contests, editors, presses. I have been told this work is too—explicit. Not subtle and lyrical enough. Too much telling. Much too long.
I have been told, by one award-winning press, that people are only interested in the memoirs of famous people.
I have been told, by many—we just don’t publish—memoir.
(Is that what I was doing I wondered?)
Do I thank them, for their dismissals? Do I thank the silence? Do I thank the alienation?
Do I thank the pedantic poet who did read the manuscript years ago and offered his notes? (first I thought your use of the Barthes, the Butler, the Sebald, was so cliched). Of course I didn't take a word of his notes.
Paging through my inbox, thinking of those writers I have been in contact with who I don't speak to anymore. Who have disappeared, either with a harsh flourish or simply fading. How these accumulate to something like heartbreak.
The sense of community in that first year here, the writers and readers I still thank in my books, because they were the ones who believed in me, still believe in me.
All that goes into writing a book. The silence, the silencing. And how one must write over that silence.
Out of wreckage, perhaps, comes writing.