Zephyrs & Value (in a world of paper)

I find it quite interesting (by which I mean annoying) that when I play a piano piece I used to know very well, but which has – through my recent abandon of it – started the gentle cascade towards only semi-memory, it is the old favourite parts that I mis-play, or forget completely. I get to the most beautiful part of a piece; the section I would once have felt my way through with my eyes closed, or while gazing absently at the blue picture frame in front of me (which used to belong to my Grandma and contains a poem about how much more we would value the world if it were small enough to fit in our hands), but this time my fingers freak out and have no idea what to do.

The problem is, I think, that this now-mis-stepped part of the piece is one I historically found intuitive or easy. I never put any work into it. The right notes just happened. They came out of my hands because I loved them. The bits I originally struggled over and exerted focus and discipline over (the bits which were difficult and forced me to actually practise, not just play; a rare event for me if I’m honest, a shirking which works well sometimes and awfully other times), are the bits I remember perfectly, because my fingers remember the repeated dance of self-enforced mechanics (the isolated hand hammering out the notes, the drills, the whole-brain enquiry into which fingers in which order make that particular run of notes easiest; the laboured scribblings in pencil to emphasise the finger-choices made). Maybe to learn something from scratch is to possess it more fully; increase its value. The things which float easily to you can easily float away again.

They say that money comes when you bring unquestionable value to the world. If you have something of value, monetary reward floats on back at you. Easy as that. You need to work out what other people want, and give it to them. Preferably on a self-marketed, social-media-loving, dancing plate.

I’m both very invested in what people want (or need) and utterly uninterested in it. I find it difficult to see how to package up the skills and talents I have in a way that will translate to receiving money. I’m interested in learning things, and experiencing things, love both comfort and novelty, and am driven to see how far I can go. I’m greatly interested in helping other people, incidentally and purposefully. I want to inspire and soothe people both immediately and in abstract ways which last… (Oh God, this is become a Miss World speech, and a cheesy one, and I don’t much care for cheese. Nevermind, self; I probably won’t publish it as public) …I want to leave the world more healed than I found it. I think I can do a lot of things. But the things I want to do are zephyrs in a world that wants hard facts and goods-for-money. In short, a lot of things float easily towards me; skills, interests, ideas – but worldly value is elusive, perplexing to me, not gentle, and what I want is really to please myself and be as free as possible. I would like to live in a way that makes me the best person I can possibly become, making use of the talents I have, seeing truth and sweeping people up with me. What I crave is connection; to myself and to a writhing, breathing, faceless (not faceless), nameless (not nameless) sea of others.

Stories (words and images) bring me closer to people that I imagine and know through sylph-like portals of ludicrousy; other people’s pens tell me things I already know and would never have thought of; and when I put characters on a page (both the individual letters, and the individual personhoods), I trust there must be an energetic response, even if I don’t feel it; even if I don’t see how it can come to me, even if it’s ultimately only within myself (Oh God, will it be?). I want there to be money, but I want more for there to be connection. Value isn’t only related to money. Maybe it might also one day be something, made of paper, that fits into a stranger’s hands.

RHCP: ‘The Zephyr Song‘:

Can I get your hand to write on
Just a piece of leg to bite on?
What a night to fly my kite on
Do you want to flash your light on?
Take a look it’s on display for you
[…]
R e v  i t  u p  t o  l e v i t a t e  h e r

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