Child, 2010 (tiny)

Waiting. I am waiting. And I have never been good at waiting. It is the space, you see, that emptiness, that room. That waiting room. Time without obvious purpose, a void into which anything might come, anything might happen. This is good. I know. Creatively, it is important. But it scares me. It is unknown. And yet I must wait. Wait for something new. Something unforeseen, unimagined.

There are all kinds of waiting. One can wait impatiently – drumming fingers, jogging legsĀ or biting nails. Or one can wait expectantly – certain of a positive outcome. Or one can wait with grace – open to all or nothing. Happy with the nothing. And there may be nothing to wait for. I wrote before of the poet who said she was waiting to become herself. To become that self she always thought she could be. It may never happen. This may be all there is. Would it be so bad? I am smaller than I thought. At least on the outside. Inside, I cannot see the end of me. This is a good feeling. As my outer world shrinks my inner world increases. Does it matter that no one sees it but me? Does my inner, shining world seep out into my outer one? I’d like to think so.

Can I learn patience? Can I learn to sit quietly, peacefully with the nothing, theĀ nothing-ness of my present creativity? I don’t know what I want, what I need, so therefore I should do nothing? Right? And yet life happens still. It does. See. What do I see?

I thought it was a cat. In the dark. Running ahead of me up the hill towards Constitution Hill. It wasn’t. It was a rabbit. On the road. Bounce. Bounce. It’s white bob of a tail flashing through the blackness. Later in the kitchen a moth flew onto the window – attracted by the light inside. I peered at it. A rare view. It stretched its legs. Stuck like glue to the glass. Held by impulse.

Waiting. I knit. I am re-learning. Nanny taught me years ago. I remember the sticky fingers. I think I told you. Already. Expecting. Expectant mothers used to knit. Did they all know how by instinct? Possibly. It is just what you did. Sit and wait but keep your fingers active. Sit and wait. Wait. Wait and see.

By Ellen Bell

Artist and writer currently living in Aberystwyth.