Practice New Beginnings In Your Creativity

I had set up a weekly get together at a local establishment. I would arrive early, get a table, and while waiting for people, I would write. I often write while waiting, so that was nothing new. However, what I did with this particular time was just to begin things. Since I wasn’t working on a project, I used my senses and made notes of my surroundings. It’s quite the opposite meditation, where I’m asking the mind to quiet down, to follow the breath or a mantra. Here, I let my mind roam wildly and recorded what I saw, heard, smelled, and felt.

With pen in hand and spiral notebook open, my eyes roamed the interior as I waited until something was novel enough that they lingered on an object or person. There was a stack of ashtrays that a waitress had set down on a nearby table that were waiting to be taken outside to the smoking patio. As a single ashtray filled my vision. What I wrote was something like this:

Stained fingers, the stench of a three-pack-a-day smoker clinging to his flesh, snuffed out yet another stick that simultaneously brought calmness to his mind and anxiety to his bloodstream.

And this:

Snugly held in the divot of the mass-produced, plastic tray, a newly lit Marlboro smoldered, its cherry glowing a deep red in the darkened room, blue-gray smoke wafting steadily away from the white paper, pale ash beginning to collect underneath.

And this:

Four carats of white ice winked in the neon flash of the OPEN sign as an expensively manicured finger tapped the ash from the end of a Menthol, as she remembered the days when being caught smoking behind the barn in rural America was a punishable offense.

I also caught snippets of conversations or interviews on television, an exp