Monday, August 20, 2007

Distilling Spirits


Are we so different from those alchemists
that turn sugar into rum, potato into vodka,
rye into whiskey or water into wine?

The stylus, the engine of spirits,
from which we give and we drink,
ferments and turns our thoughts into phrases.

Do we not become intoxicated in that rich trickle of the keys?
We taste and we change,
we add and we subtract,
measuring the weight of every syllable against the ideal.

Our patience allows the reaction to wait,
to ferment…
and age in its own time and distinct bouquet.

Folding the material into a drawer,
or oak barrel,
we wait until the yeast eats away at the pages.

With the passage of time, the script can fill with imagery,
caramelize and sweeten to the mind.
Then and only then, is when we open that cask,
pull that creation from its dark cell,
and taste.

For what can reading be,
other than sipping the mind of another?

Purity and potency are the maxims
of both the distillers of elements and language.

For when we believe we are done,
it when we are to begin;
perhaps even again.

While alchemists attempt to turn lead into gold,
distillers turn nature into spirit,
we turn gold into graphite and ink.

Whether shot glass or script,
tale or tankard, bottle or book-
we follow the same brewer's rules
for creating the uncommon from the common.

Collect, mix, distil, pour, and drink.

4 comments:

Charles Gramlich said...

This is a great extended metaphor.

No wonder I feel rather drunk at the moment.

OOC said...

Thanks, I did not write it while drinking. I do not know how some people do it while on the bottle.

People talk about the great alchoholic writers (Heminguey, Faulkner, F. Scott), but they wrote TO DRINK. They would hold off on the sauce until they sold their story.

Then binge in celebration.

Now THAT is motivation

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