The recent freak snowstorm brought silence to my house in the form of power losses: no refrigerator humming, no dishwasher or washing machine, no furnace fan, no well-pump running, no electronic sounds. After working outside to clear fallen boughs and cut back broken shrubs, I felt physically tired each evening.
I find that physical exhaustion often inspires me to write because I am mentally alert but able to find physical stillness. I can pick up a notebook and a pen and stay in a cozy chair–or under a pile of warm blankets–and jot down poems and ideas. I don’t get as “antsy” as I do when I have not exerted myself so much.
Today, the power came on again after almost three days. I had cut back the broken buddleia stems and cleaned the house. I had a few quiet hours for reading and concentration.
I was interrupted by picoides pubescens, the downy woodpecker. A pretty bird that hammers at our wood-sided house, especially when the weather’s been nasty. I find it difficult to get my thoughts onto paper when a one-ounce feathered creature is pounding away at the cornerboards, drilling 2-inch holes into the cedar and distracting the writer at her work.
Blame the bird for my lack of productiveness today? Well, maybe I needed to mull over my ideas a bit longer.