Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Meeting My Muse

I finally got in contact with my Muse the other day. I know she’s imparted many things to me over the years, but I’ve never seen or spoken with her. After I read this post at Sharon Lippincott’s wonderful blog I decided it was time.

I used an hypnosis-like method of relaxation and deep exploration to find her and told myself before I went in that I would meet her. It’s similar to contacting guides and the higher self, and I’ve used it during other procedures including meeting my writing self, younger self, working self, physical self, etc.

My Muse is mute. She’s a strong empath. And she’s a gamin-faced French woman of indeterminate age. Her name is Marie–Josee and she lives in an apartment, it’s practically a garrett, with a view of the Paris streets out the window above her desk. Any time she wishes she can return her quill pen to its holder and stare outside.

It looked idyllic and rather clichéd until I looked closer and realized the scene out the window was a drawing. I’ve no idea what’s really out there, but I could hear the clippety-clop of horses and carriages rumbling over cobblestone streets. I had the distinct sense it was nearly two centuries ago. I also know Marie-Josee had a cell phone. What the hell. My Muse can do as she pleases.

She has soulfully deep, wide, warm, chocolate eyes. Her kind, expressive face tells me she had to close off from the world. She is too sensitive. Life two centuries ago is much easier for her, and by extension, me. The constant bombardment of energy from electricity, cell phones, radio waves, and everything else that we need to survive in the 21st century sickens her soul. The cell phone reminds me all time exists together. She does not use it.

She is telling me something. I can hear rapid French in my mind, but I’ve no idea what she’s saying. I don’t speak the language.
She smiles. She has reminded me the spoken word is an inefficient way to communicate. You can hide what you mean when you speak. No so much when you have to use body and soul to make your thoughts known.

Use all the senses in writing, she tells me. They work best when together.

We are face to face. Her hand lightly caresses my cheek and stays. Her gaze goes beyond my body into my mind and heart. Marie-Josee will neither blink nor turn away. Neither will I.

A quick smile teases her lips and then blooms. She has perfect teeth.

Outside a carriage passes and a man shouts. Random noises fill the air briefly and pass. Her gaze remains. It is the frank and open look of an eternal love; the soul who returns with you each lifetime for growth, for change, and for experience until you’ve each learned enough to stay home.

If you have anything to hide do not write.

My hand rests lightly on her cheek now. Her smile widens.

Feel what you write.

She leans in and kisses me. Her lips are warm and soft on mine and then gone. She has told me something. I do not know what it is.


I’ve visited her twice now. Her obvious advice about writing is good, but I haven’t sorted out what else she’s telling me. My guess is Marie–Josee wants me to forge an emotional connection to my material, especially the memoir. It’s difficult. It takes objectivity to put it down, but I see her point. If it’s not emotionally true, then there is no reason to write it and no reason for anyone to read it.

What about you? Have you visited your Muse?


Reb said...

Wow! Must think on this more and get back to you.

Sharon Lippincott said...

Oh my, Leah, merci beaucoup for the compliment. I'm so pleased that Sarabelle helped lead you to Marie-Josee. She is truly a treasure. May her spirit guide your heart through your fingers, onto the page, and into the eyes and hearts of your readers.

the Bag Lady said...

How lucky for you to be able to find your muse. You have always been more receptive than the thick-skulled Bag Lady.

Leah J. Utas said...

Reb - I'll take the "wow" as a high compliment.

Ritergal - Thank you for your kind words. I need to let Marie-Josee guide me more.

dfBag Lady - Relax and let your Muse flow to you.

Clare2e said...

M-J must be your Muse, because this scene is so beautifully and tenderly told.

Leah J. Utas said...

Clare2e - What a lovely compliment. Thank you.

Crabby McSlacker said...

I'm afraid I'm Muse-less, which is probably just one step short of being Use-less. I don't have the patience to wait for her arrival, but perhaps I should work on that.

Terrie Farley Moran said...


This is totally fascinating. Like Reb, I am going to have to think about this. In fact, I think I'll print it out so I can reread in a comfortable spot and thanks for the link to Sharon.


Leah J. Utas said...

I'm sure you're not Muse-less Crabby, and you're by no stretch Use-less.

Oh, dfTerrie, thank you.

Reb said...

I think it is fabulous that you were able to meet your muse. The manner in which you write about the meeting is so inspiring. I have a feeling that I will not meet mine - I suspect she has given up on me.

Leah J. Utas said...

Oh, my. Inspiring. Thank you.
Muses don't give up on us, Reb, we abandon them.