What is the question you want to sow in your broken-open life, to water and wait, and to see what grows?
Ursula Le Guin writes,
‘All of us have to invent our lives, make them up, imagine them. We need to be taught these skills; we need guides to show us how. Without them, our lives get made up for us by other people.’*
Our story can only use our words, and the number of these words increase as we practise what we want to do n exploring the question.
In so doing, we overcome the tyranny of the others – the story others want our lives to be about. This is like the voice in a movie, coming from off-screen, talking over the action so that the characters stop and begin looking around to see where the voice is coming from.
Seeing life as creating stories will ensure our “phrases” and “sentences” and “paragraphs” won’t become all stiff and formalised and bothered by change. They’ll be infinitely adaptable. Here are some more words from Ursula Le Guin about words that shape our imaginations, and then some words from James Carse about the plasticity of our imaginations, comparing the finite artist with the infinite artist
‘Words are what matter. The sharing of words. The activation of imagination through the reading of words.’*
”The earlier artist worked within the outlines of their imagination, the latter reworked their imagination.’**
And the question? It’s what enables us to throwaway the script and enter into the unfolding drama.