“A man can dream,
give me a min-
I’ll have to face
my thoughts and
I’m no longer
fine. I feel like
I’m just not sure.“You don’t know until you know.”
– people who’ve gone from
not knowing to knowing
No matter what I’m doing or not doing right now, it feels like a period of flux and evolution. I mean, I basically haven’t had a project like this one since I was making WalkLeft, the Podcast on a regular basis. I’m in Washington, DC as I type this – I know, I know, I may be patting myself on the back for commitment prematurely, but I’m pleased with the longevity of my enthusiasm for this pursuit – and it feels good to be creating something even if it never really finds an audience.
The audience thing is the main hump I have to get over right now. I need to not care if I’m the only one who ever reads these words. Not because of any bullshit of it being “my story that needs to be told blah blah blah” (I’m just another [insert privilege here]) but because making theatre so sincerely for so long has made me accustomed to collaboration with other creators and, ultimately, in a special but equally necessary way, with spectators. This time it’s just me and a book and a marker and then me again.
It feels indulgent but important to take the time for this – which is why the poem’s first sentence jumped out at me. The rest of the unredacted words summed up introspection nicely. And from there, I hope that, with discipline, this process will reveal something. Even if it only reveals that I can do this, that’ll be something. Though, I’m hoping to get more out of it.
I often reflect on my time in theatre school when my classmates and I were doing strange acting-related exercises on a daily basis. The purpose of those activities wasn’t apparent to me until years after I’d graduated. The important thing was that I’d developed those preparation and performance habits (which later proved to be good ones). As a director, I’ve introduced some of those techniques to the actors with whom I’ve worked. I can’t always explain why, but I trust that once something works for an actor, the underlying minutiae don’t matter.
So, yeah. I’m just going to trust that this slightly random project and process have lessons for me. Hopefully, I’ll be able to articulate some of them along the way. And then, perhaps, I’ll know.
You can learn about the impulse behind this project here.