Writing Prompt Mysteries

Sixty minutes might not have been enough time for me to come up with an idea and write a short narrative. A black hardcover was in my hands, which might have made things easier. It was one of my special books. There were twenty of these black hardcovers in a row on a shelf, and they were expensive, many of them around seventy or eighty dollars, one around two hundred. One psychological thinker wrote them all. I bought most of them back in 2000 and 2001, one after another, as if they were part of my destiny. As the years have passed, they have become an integral part of my reading life, along with around seventeen other volumes of C.G. Jung. The black hardcover in my hands, volume five of Jung’s Collected Works, of more than 550 pages, would hopefully provide the inspiration for whatever I would write on the page. My hands opened the book, a page found me, then five sentences, and soon images for a narrative arrived in my head. In those five sentences, Jung seemed to write about the dangers involved in living in external objects from the past instead of looking inside and facing one’s difficulties in the present. These sentences spoke to me because I knew of these dangers from firsthand experience. Many years ago, I became obsessed with a cabin from my childhood, lost to me, and I would drive the ninety or so miles from Seattle, head east toward the North Cascades, and drive almost to the front gate of the property before turning around and heading home. Although I was already in my late twenties, I’d yet to start living my own life. The past must have seemed safer, but I knew that in reality there was nothing there for me. My life would have to happen in the present. And since then, hopefully it has for the most part. Had an hour passed since I’d started writing these sentences? Writing is never without mystery.


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