Creek: A recess or inlet in the shore of the sea.
Despite common perception, or preference, that bigger is better… I’ve come to view creeks as particularly special. Not quite wide enough or powerful enough (or even fast enough) to be deemed a river; not nearly as expansive enough to rival a lake, much less a sea. And yet, these thinner streams of water cut through islands. They distinguish themselves in hidden coves and ravines. There is something to be said for the gaudy-less water that still carries world changing impact inherently within its own flow.
Distinctly connected to the dreams and aspirations we carry in our hearts and minds are they not?
Deigning creative work as a means to a viable career or fame or fortune or any of those material things is often where things begin to go awry, even if we can’t necessarily see it right away. We forget that industry, ANY industry, is simply that… industrious. Industry is neither inventive, nor imaginative, nor compassionate, nor humanitarian- its sole purpose to generate income. Income is generated, in essence, by popularity. The creative content of our ambitions has infinite potential to become popular and that’s what industry is after. They don’t see Cardi B, they see a lake they can capitalize on. They don’t see Black Panther- they see a river of money they never believed was there. They didn’t see Aretha Franklin, they saw saw a vast sea of earning opportunity.
Dream catchers of a different sort. That’s what industry is. They don’t want to nurture dreams or have dreams themselves- they want to ensnare those of us who do. They can’t see the creeks properly. Any tiny flow of water, they immediately insist must be a lake, or a river, or a sea. And that’s what we intake. That’s what we begin to believe. And that’s when we begin to lose ourselves to their machine. We stop pursuing our dreams for the love. We stop being able to perceive the nuance of our ambition. We value ourselves and our dreams less when they don’t quickly match up with the myopathy of the industry our creations are supposed to fit in. And why wouldn’t we?
Discarding creatives is what this industry does. When they’re done with you, they toss you out. When they feel like they can’t profit off of you anymore, it’s like you never existed in their world. Imagine being courted by royalty: the food, the sights, the eye contact, the people, the clothing, the sweet nothings! And then a few months later, the Prince/Princess will barely meet your eyes from across the way as they parade down the boulevard in broad daylight toting their chosen lover. And you realize, you were a product of nights and secrets and shadows. Always promised a platform in the spotlight, never tasting the sun.
Dry creeks are a terrible thing and can be caused for many reasons. Listen to me closely. Please. Do not let anyone dry your creeks out. The potential of what your dreams can become or instigate is not at the expense of where it begins! It is because it hails from the creek that it carries so much power and magic. Maybe one day it becomes a river or a lake or a sea, and maybe one day it doesn’t! It still carries the power to cut through islands. It still carries the energy to establish sacred ground in hidden places.
Don’t cede your dreams to anybody. And don’t sneer at their creek origin story either. Do what drives you. Let your love and passion fuel you. Work hard through the blocks. Take advantages of opportunities, but don’t let opportunities take advantage of you. More opportunities will come in this life. There’s only one of you that this world will ever get. That your dreams will ever get. You are the magic- any magic that your dreams and creations have that draw people is solely because of you.
Drip cleanly and elegantly. Follow the rules and flow of your creek. If you can build a living around it? Generate income from it? Impact tens and hundreds and thousands and millions in the process? AWESOME! But it’s still your creek. Never lose that. If your creek grows, joins, and morphs into something bigger that is okay. Some creeks do evolve. Just stay close, so you can make sure it’s still you. And when you feel alone in your mansion of unkempt aspiration, head craned towards the attic, and hear your dreams creak?
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