The Yeats poem with the line, “the fascination of what’s difficult” occurs to me this morning, coming out of nowhere like the footsteps of the person who’s staying in the room above me. Such is motel life, in which the mind and body are both free and far-from-home, consequently finding themselves in circumstances that allow for strange clairvoyances and visitations that wouldn’t occur in more familiar territory.
Floors are cold here, that’s what I’ll remember, and the river of birds I saw yesterday on the beach near Nehalem. Not a cloud in the sky, sunshine all day and the day before that, rare in this neck of the woods. But the hell with memories, who wants memory when one can drive down the Oregon coast with the top down, metaphorically, and think about things that just seem to come naturally, like working out the logic of poems.
Motel coffee is better in the Pacific Northwest than it is California or Nevada or Utah. I’ve just made myself a cup, drinking it while sitting upright in bed, looking through my notes and then typing some of what I see. I see I’ve battled angels again, that goodness, not evil, is where I’ve always pitched my battle, that I have some sort of pre-destined instinct toward the good but find ways to interrupt, circumvent this instinct and instead turn it toward the less good, not evil just the less good, not wanting, I suppose, the burden of being a fine example of a man that other people might admire and instead trying to be the kind of man other people are…
The power on my laptop wanes, and I’ve forgotten the power cord: I can see the thing sitting on my desk at home, ready to be packed for the trip north but left behind. I only have a few minutes left here, and checkout is at 11 a.m. What else might I say? I look at my notes and find this:
The way the light moved through the forest as I drove from the coast over the mountain to Portland: like it was driving too…a note I made while driving.