There’s a chill setting in, drawing out an amber palette which lights up for a moment golden before it smoulders to a brown. There’s a rain coming down, transforming the world into a muted darkness suffused with potent measures of melancholy and romance. Für Elise in the key of G. I welcome it.

I know I’m not the only one. If I was, I probably wouldn’t be able to communicate this…this ubiquitous autumnal feeling. Well, not without you concluding I’ve lost my mind.

How many times have I written or read about those flame-colored leaves? Gone on and on about those burning sunsets, those elegant dark trees, love and inspiration, dreams and hope. Writing and reading incessantly as if one could contain all those precious things in words and in so doing own them. All the while, I am all too aware of being one among many, of being a drop in an ocean, of the utterly unremarkable banality of being human.

I could write about the things I am most familiar with: plastic bags, grey carpeted cubicles, made-to-assemble-particle-board furniture, plastic packaging, asphalt parking lots, ugly architecture, litter, the unrelenting conspiracy of dirt, of ignorance, of mistakes. I could write about being the fifth of seven children in a house with too many worries and not enough kindness; of continuing that lifelong lesson of humility at school, feeling even smaller, somehow even more insignificant. Of working for years in corporations, putting off dreams indefinitely, until they started disappearing one by one. Of the disinterest or contempt I am not surprised to find in a stranger’s eyes.

All this as I sit here and write like I’ve never known anything other than lush forests and sunsets and love and a captivated audience. Writing like everyone wants to know what I know, even though I am constantly humbled by how much I have yet to learn. My old posts look so solid, so stationary, museum objects encased in glass, but I know they are more like bubbles that once floated up with the wind, more ephemeral than a memory. And most of all, none of them stand alone, they are mere fragments of a much larger, more complicated story. One I may or may not be able to tell.

The more I strive to be better at it, the more I am convinced what a gift it is, not merely to write and be read, but to write well and be truly understood. And what a rare honor it is to be allowed to explain things better than you have before.

I hope that you, dear reader, and time (perhaps with substantial effort and luck) will grant me this: The ability to shed anything inadequate or burdensome, to be among those who breathe life into that which needs constant breath, to transform like some winged invisible creature who speaks at once and directly to the heart.


Text and Pictures by M.P. Baecker 2019.

8 thoughts on “Fall Circle

  1. I will grant you all that and more, my friend. And if you choose to write about plastic bags, asphalt parking lots, or flame-colored leaves (replete with amazing photos!) you always have my attention. Continue to to shine, sister!

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    • Thanks so much brother! 💚 My favourite authors manage to write about harshness, pain, ugliness and indifference so well that it somehow becomes a pleasure to read, I can only guess that it must have been a pleasure to write as well despite!

      To be honest, I don’t know how long I can continue this venture…this year especially feels like so much effort down the drain (4 drafts in now) and isolation…I used to think effort was a reward in and of itself or that the talented were always rewarded, but I no longer believe the world is “fair”, especially not the business world, and I say that with no bitterness: I don’t feel entitled to any recognition, I can only try for it, hope for it. Writing is a career that requires an audience, otherwise the words are just dormant. All I want to say myself in a few years: You know what, I gave it a good try.

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      • It is such a hard road to travel, sister. Like any type of art the thing must be done for the love of it. Like any form of art the thing must be done for your own appreciation. Like any form of art you can probably, though there are no guarantees, eke out a living doing it every day. But like any form of art the chances of that home run success is truly not up to dedication or talent, but a lot of self-promotion and a great amount of timing and luck.

        I couldn’t do it. I tried a couple of times, but it doesn’t take me long to realize I don’t enjoy the PROCESS of dedicated writing (as I intimated in my latest post It’s like gardening; fun to do on the side for me but I’d hate to have to make a living at it.

        But you must try. You have that itch. Maybe you learn, like I did, that it is too time-consuming and not personally rewarding enough to encompass you. Maybe it becomes an aside as you do other things. Or maybe you find that high and learn that there is nothing you’d rather do, every day, than write. If so, then write.

        For me, I’ll be here to watch you learn. If I have learned anything about you it is this: you will evolve, either way. You, like me, are not one to be satisfied with who you are. As wonderful as you might be (and you are!) you know you can be a better version of yourself tomorrow. As we build passions and careers, families and networks, we are always still building us.

        This process, this year, isn’t just about writing. It is about you. What emerges on the other side is undoubtedly a great written piece, but also a more fully formed MP!

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