Arisa White Recommends...

“When I hit that point where a wall is met with my writing, the sensation is gone and the train is gone, and my immediate environs lose their contemplative harmony. My focus is broken, so I find some pleasure. A heavy indica hybrid like Bubba Kush, a handblown glass pipe made by a local Maine craftsman sits perfectly in the palm of my hand. What I need is to get the language out of my head, which cycles in cynicism and judgment and too little trust for the flow that’s always on time.

What I’ve come to realize is that I’ve neglected a whole assortment of needs and promises before I’ve gotten to that point of difficulty in the work. Being a people pleaser, it takes up psychic energy to keep record of that debt, and now I’ve put my writing in antagonistic relation to these things. All of which is unfair because I haven’t given the work its proper space.

I need to relax. And at some point, my stomach reminds me it’s been hungry for hours. I prepare a meal, brew some Rasa, and delight in what I’m eating. I wash the dishes and wipe down the counters. I chat with the wife and we walk the dog and let the dog lead us around the block, past the lawn signs still embroiled in political protest. There’s something about the way the signs inch closer and closer to each other, day by day, that brings my wall down.”
—Arisa White, author of Who’s Your Daddy (Augury Books, 2021)