Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Something True

I want to write something true. It's not that I generally write or say or do false things. Rather, it's that I almost never share anything wholly true.

Sometimes a friend will see what I've written here and chastise me for what I write. Say that I shouldn't have written it or that I'm treading all too close to a line I should not cross.

But I write these things because they are the edge of truth. They are not the whole truth. They are not the thoughts I think in-between the things I do and don't do. They are not the true story, though they pass for it and make for occasional conversation. They are the almost-truths, the edges of my life that are more easily visible and more easily contemplated, the shadows of the rest.

The rest of what? The rest of me, of you, of the things that go unsaid and unwritten. Some are known but never consciously acknowledged or never verbally acknowledged, at least. Some are faint sounds on the wind – that almost-annoying almost-heard conversation that lingers as whispers and shadow. And some are the true truths, parts that may never be known, even to oneself.

But I think I know more of myself or at least I know some of the hidden parts, the unsaid parts, the shadow parts. What can be maddening, sometimes, is knowing that the shadow parts cannot be revealed. Those secret impulses, those hidden thoughts, the ones that if known or made public would almost certainly be injurious. And so they languish in shadow, in the in-betweens.

But I want to write something true and therein lies the dilemma of openness and consequences.

I would love to write about my fears, for although they are not exceptional, they are part of the shadow-me and often delineate the edges of action. I would love to write about my hopes and dreams, for although they are not unique, they are of me and by me and define me. I would love to write about my shadow thoughts, for although they can be dark or mischievous or scary, they can also be bright or productive or hopeful.

Not surprisingly, what I have written here is not the truth. Not the whole truth. I have not told you anything you did not know or could not have guessed. I have phrased the issue and identified factors but I have not revealed a truth.

And I shall not. For all the reasons above and for many, many more, the shadow truths remain as they have always been, shadows. You are permitted the merest reflections of self. And that has to be enough. It always has been and must always be. For if someone wrote what they really think, what paths through their mind during the in-betweens, when no one else is looking or knows, no one would want to know what was written. They might want to read it, to see it, to realize it, but not to know it. There are places within each of us that no one else dare tread.

That is a true truth.