Tuesday, January 20, 2015

EDITED: What Rhett said

Frankly, my dear, I give zero damns

Perhaps you were unfortunate enough to have read the post about Blank Spaces -- and no, it wasn't about Taylor Swift, smarty pants. It was about some quiet we found on Christmas night and the poem that didn't get written about it -- you're welcome.

What was self-edited out of that post was the idea -- still rattling around in my head -- about how that 'blank space' -- the dark, quiet night, the still air, the sense of everything and nothing in the calmness of Christmas evening -- held all the poems I'd never write, that all the words and ideas and lines lived somewhere in the emptiness, and that for a breath I knew them.

Even I can spot hyperbole when I throw it up.

I write that idea down now only to get it out of my head -- you, dear Readers Reader, have been the recipient of more than one persistent bad post and/or poem for that purpose, for which I thank you -- and because it made me think about Rhett Butler.

Because isn't he the embodiment of how a writer should be? He was very brave in the way a real writer is brave. In a time and place that cared way too much about one's name and one's occupation (or lack of it) and one's antecedents and one's manners and one's looks, he gave zero damns about any of it. Not his family in Charleston, not the plantation owners of the county, not Atlanta society. He did want he wanted (hello, Belle Watling!), he fought the war on his terms, and by God, if he wanted to dance with Scarlett O'Hara at the fund-raiser for the glorious dead (or whatever), he would, because he just didn't care about Southern approval.

But what did Rhett Butler care about? Say, on a scale of one to ten damns, what did he care eleven damns about -- because, it seems to me, to be a really good writer, that's how much you need to care about what you're writing?

Well, duh, GWTW fans. He cared eleven damns about Scarlett -- and later, Bonnie Blue Butler. And honor, too -- as evidenced by his eleventh-hour (speaking of eleven) defection to the retreating Confederate forces. (Pissing Scarlett off royally.)

When Rhett Butler cared about something, he cared about it all the way. He cared all the damns.

Although by the end of Gone with the Wind, Rhett tells Scarlett he's going home to Charleston to his family, to make peace, and maybe find peace. His daughter dead, and his love for Scarlett with it (thanks loads, Ashley Wilkes), he's back to square one in the caring department; as he walks out the door on a sobbing Scarlett. (But Rhett's a survivor; my money has always been with him to find something new to give damns about. Maybe it would even be Scarlett [bad sequels notwithstanding].)

I'm a coward, and lazy, and not very patient, which is why my blog metrics are closer to the zero end of the scale rather then the ten end. And why, out in Nowheresville, Ohio, on Christmas night, in a place as quiet as the battlefields after the Yankee victory in the battle of Atlanta, I'm hearing the ghosts of poems that never were written. But we're persistent here at CathyBlogs, if nothing else; maybe we're a little more like Scarlett that way (given our language, we're sure no Melanie). Tomorrow being another day, and all; we'll just click 'new post,' and begin again.

I really wanna care / I wanna feel something / Let me dig a little deeper / No, sorry, nothing

The last couple of years I've kinda had a theme-of-the-year. I kinda do this year but you can figure it out as we go along. 

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