Yesterday, I had to do a lot of driving around. A collected 2 hours’ worth of freeway traffic, which I hate, especially now that I live out here in the Hinterlands, where “rush-hour” means maybe 10 cars…
But because of that impending awfulness, I was hyper-selective about what music I wanted to listen to, and, out of the blue, I chose Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers’ Greatest Hits.
This collection has a lot of really early songs and, as each song’s intro would start playing, I was amazed by how familiar those intros were down in my very bones, and it would immediately take me back to my old apartments in NYC. I was so young.
When I learned, back in October, that Tom Petty had died, I was shocked and really sad, but it wasn’t until yesterday, when I started listening to Free Fallin’ and then repeated it over & over & over for the rest of my driving around, that it really struck me that Tom Petty was dead and I had that keen sense of sadness that you finally get when you realize that someone you love is really gone now forever.
It was so sad — but then suddenly, I was struck by this overwhelming desire to make love to Tom Petty. This is not something I ever had the slightest desire to do while he was alive, so this was quite a huge and sudden step into the realm of utter impossibility.
And it was so vivid, if you know what I mean. I could actually see it in my mind, all this lovemaking with a decidedly not dead Tom Petty.
Certain meditation practices teach to ask yourself “What do I want?” and then to lean into your desires without supplying yourself with any answers. Let the questions just “be there” and the answers eventually surface.
I don’t believe that any desire on earth is as keen as wanting to make love to somebody that you simply cannot have. And there’s that added edge of frustration when you never even realized you wanted to make love to that person until it was just too late.
I’m not saying that making love to Tom Petty was ever in the realm of my possibilities, I’m just saying how intense it was to suddenly be overwhelmed by these keen desires (and pictures in my head) that were utterly impossible to fulfill. Least of all, when I was driving around in a car, in 96-degree awfulness with unbearable humidity, in the middle of nowhere, 9 months after he was dead.
What’s also strange (I chalk this up to the Muse’s recent return into my creative life), is that I’m finding , to a much lesser extent, I’m having those feelings about a number of people. Total or near-total strangers. I’ll see a person and suddenly find that I’m really impressed with the beauty of their humanness and then I get the vague feeling that I want to make love to him or her. Not anything like what happened in the car yesterday; but more a deep appreciation of their humanity and their unique beauty, and then the response is “wanting to make love.”
My long-time readers obviously know that for many decades, my Muse was an incredibly erotic one (for instance: see everything I ever wrote between 1985 – 2010, including personal letters, private diaries, scribbles on scraps of paper, you name it.). So I guess that none of this sudden Eros should be surprising to me, and yet it kind of is. I seriously don’t want to spend the last half of my life walking around in that same cloying haze of relentless erotic desire that I spent the first half of my life in, thank you very much! It was certainly fruitful, but it was exhausting.
This morning, as I was getting ready to meditate, I decided to do a “What do I want?” meditation and lean into my new Tom Petty desire and see where the questions took me.
Part of my question was simply about loss and about “what is life, really?” and that kind of made me cry. At least, tears came. The answer that also came was simple, but profound, I suppose. What all those years of writing erotica taught me about the Muse, is that all of creation, and the creative process, comes from the Higher Source, a place of nearly indescribable love — the Muse is, in a spiritual sense, making love to you and then you conceive your creation from it — and therefore the creative process comes with an intensely erotic energy when you allow yourself to tune in it.
And I think that while I was driving yesterday, and zoning out on Free Fallin‘ and tapping into the entity that had been the physical Tom Petty, I was also tapping into the fact that he had been created at all, as a human being, and that he had been so creative while he lived — and so I’m guessing that in the after-world, his energy is just as creative, still. The creative processes don’t stop just because you cross over to the nonphysical. I think I was tapping into the creative essence of Tom Petty that was simply eternal and that’s how the Muse chose to show it to me — with all those pictures in my head.
Anyway, thanks for visiting, gang. Have a beautiful, beautiful Tuesday, wherever the Muse takes you. See ya.