Betty Duffy


Monday, December 6, 2010

Submission Poetry

Bearing writes:

"When I try to write about specific ways I "submit" in marriage, I feel unacceptably laid-bare -- I am not writing about sex, but it feels as if I am trying to write about something equally interior and private. I don't have the right to explain how it is between us."

I could not agree more. The first post I wrote on the subject, I had to delete, and the second one feels so strident--it's obviously protecting the "how it is between us" that I don't have the right to share. I actually wrote a poem once that's sort of about wifely submission, but even that I don't want to share--maybe because it's mostly about the speaker not submitting. It's also a dumb poem.

So I'm going to share someone else's submission poetry, even though it's not directly related to this particular subject--you may interpret it however you like.

Go forth and read Meredith


mrsdarwin said...

I think there's a core of privacy at the heart of every marriage that needs to be protected. Take note, William and Kate! I wonder if some of these ideas are best explored in fiction.

I can't remember if I was talking with you about Acedia and Me by Kathleen Norris. Overall I found it a very gripping book about sloth, but I had a hard time with the biographical sections about her relationship with her late husband, simply because it was so different from my own -- and more than different, alien. I felt the same way about the popular Catholic mother's planning book, A Mother's Rule of Life. There was plenty of fine advice contained therein, and yet I couldn't get past the way she related to her husband.

Paul Stilwell said...

Yes, there are things that cannot be spoken about without them being altered and deranged in the speaking - or the writing.

How does one get others to experience one's own experience? It is impossible. Every person is going out fresh.

But one's experience can be "transliterated" to others into something else. Which is a far more beautiful form of communication, for sacrifice goes into it. Speaking of submission, it is precisely that which is required when approaching any medium, isn't it? The things in one that announce themselves as the most imperative are told to hold back and fall silent, while some other word comes through.

I guess these are some of my initial thoughts on the "creative process" more than anything else.

BettyDuffy said...

Mrs. D, for the most part, I enjoy looking in on other people's relationships--for entertainment, for affirmation--whatever. I don't particularly enjoy the idea of offering my own marriage up for the amusement and affirmation of others--but sometimes I do it anyway, in grossly abridged forms.

But I think Paul, and you are correct, in that these intimate and also deeply enriching aspects of the human experience can and should be communicated somehow, somewhere through a different medium than my blog. And also probably not by me.

Paul, I enjoy what you've added to the discussion on submission.

Paul Stilwell said...

Yes, they should be communicated somehow - absolutely!

But you say: "...somewhere through a different medium than my blog."

Not "in addition to" your blog (which is very enriching)?

And you say: "And also probably not by me."

I think you're absolutely wrong there.