Sunday, October 17, 2010

intimidation

i was once told that there is no such thing as intimidation.
the person who told me that was the most intimidating person i ever met.
she was my high school playwriting/acting teacher
perhaps one of the greatest minds i will ever know and she became an incredible mentor.
a few years later, at NYU, i would meet a similar teacher who to this day tells me to
"Be Aggressive!"
whenever i feel the cold sweat of panic coming from a moment of insecurity drawn from a very deep well,
i remember these women
or at least today i did.
i started an advanced poetry class with an incredibly respected poet.
as the class began to discuss each others' poems i felt myself sinking
actually, rewind
from the moment we handed our poems out and i realized that i was the only person
to pass out a three page poem
i began to panic.
then when that one woman who i know i've met before began to discuss the poems with literary terms,
terms i assure you i have only heard once and never myself used in a sentence,
i began to feel that feeling.
that feeling of i don't belong
the same feeling i felt on my first day at nyu.
 as the class ran out of time and i thought i had skirted my way out of a potential lions den,
someone suggested for the people whose poems we did not get to discuss, we should read them aloud.
asshole.
so when it came to me, i breathed and decided to read the shortest one i had and the oddest thing happened.
they laughed.
i never saw the poem as funny.
if anything i see my poetry, mostly featured on this blog, as depressing.
a part of me thought that they had missed the point and another part of me was okay if they did.
who doesn't like to make people laugh?
if i look at the many teachers and bosses i have had, they all have one thing in common:
the ability to combat fear with everything they got.
there must be a reason they find me or i find them.
in the words of jim whitaker, "fear is as real as this table."
fear is the most powerful emotion in the world because it knows how to disguise itself.
and for a writer, how you handle fear is what makes all the difference.

1 comment:

Carmen said...

fear is such an interesting feeling - it's amazing how quickly and in how many ways your body physically reacts to it...