I was raised by a mother who was fond of advising me, when out shopping, that if a particular something—say a blouse, or once it was a mirror at a flea market—“spoke to me” then I should buy it. Worlds of meaning were enclosed within this simple phrase, worlds that came welling up out of her Argentine girlhood with all the force of a magical incantation. I loved my Latin-born mother for this; it was a side that made my American life just a bit different: more enchanted, more mysterious, more interesting.
Years ago, when I was struggling through a dry patch of writer’s fatigue after completing a particularly demanding feature story, my wise Jungian analyst remarked that “sometimes you have to take time to let the well fill up.” Like stones dropped into water, her words sank into my psyche and stayed there. Now and again, when I’m coming up empty with words or narrative, I practice waiting for the rain to fall and the well to fill.