I've been putting a lot of thought in to inspiration lately. I think, on a daily basis, things inspire us. We see, we acknowledge, we store it away. I am not above saying that by overhearing a discussion today, I was inspired to add a blurb to the training session I'm currently running.
It's more than that though. I think that there are certain events, books, songs, people that light that flame within us, and just the memory of that event, book, song, person keeps that flame flickering. It lights a passion within us, which, in turn inspires others.
My Flame Lighting Moments!
Inspiration #1 -
I remember being deeply inspired by Robert Frost. In ninth grade, we had to memorize - and then recite - the entire poem "Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening". It captured, for me, the beauty and quiet that I have always found in a snowfall. To this day, I can all but recite the whole poem. I remember putting a book of poetry by Robert Frost on my Christmas list that year. My mother thought I was nuts, and made a point of telling me that she spent $12.95 on the damn book, but on Christmas morning, I opened "The Poetry of Robert Frost". I still keep the book on my shelf. I've paged through it hundreds of times, stopping randomly and reading a poem. It still brings a smile to my face and joy to my heart. I love the way Mr. Frost takes just a few words and transports me to the snowy woods. Mom, I think you got your thirteen bucks out of that gift!
Inspiration #2 -
"Luck of the Draw" by Bonnie Raitt. Both the album, probably my all time favorite, and the song. Oh, I know everyone went gaga over "I Can't Make You Love Me", but the first time I listened to the son, I fell in love. Paul Brady wrote the lyrics, but Bonnie's voice made them come alive to me. Odd though, I just tried to link something from YouTube, and I cannot find her version of the song. I don't know that the single went anywhere for Bonnie, but her version still remains at or near the top of my favorite song list.
Inspiration #3 -
Dorothy B Hughes. "The Case of the Real Perry Mason". A biography of Erle Stanley Gardner. Yeah, OK. I hear you laughing. I saved for weeks, had my mom write out a check and had this book shipped to me when I was seventeen years old. I'd been a fan of the Perry Mason series since I was old enough to watch the reruns on TV. For YEARS, I thought that the inspiration here was going to send me to law school, returning as the lawyer no one could beat. In reality, the inspiration was Mr Gardner himself. His work ethic. His 'podunking'. His travel stories. I believe, and I would have to get the book to confirm this - yeah, it's on the same shelf as the Frost book! - that he said something to the effect of 'I figured out a long time ago that the only way I could travel was to be a writer. I could take my work with me, and still satisfy my wanderlust.'. It was one of the first times I had encountered the word wanderlust. Sigh. Probably one of my favorite words.
I think there's more inspirations that I want to share, but for now, I'm noticing that they all reference words. Lyrics. Poetry. Wanderlust. My mind wants to churn on that.