After a long swoop of house cleaning, I turned to Nadeem and said, “No more kidding around. I am going to write that book this time. I am going to finish three paintings. This is the last straw.”
A woodpecker came to visit me later this evening. The fella followed me for three blocks, an impressive feat for an urban jungle. Around this time last year, I started delving into the distractible idea that I write a book. When I got myself started after much internal deliberation about just what I thought I knew about, a woodpecker broke our window in our Medford apartment; then, proceeded to peck at the tree outside. For hours.
"When the woodpecker knocks, so does opportunity. The woodpecker makes use of dead wood, of what would appear to be old, diminished, useless. When we encounter the woodpecker, we are to evaluate old projects, we are to find the things that sustain ourselves that appear to be gone. We are to persist in them and make a little noise while doing so."