Compelled- #AmWriting


It’s the time when people should be asleep, washing away the worries of the day and letting Sleep do her task of gently caressing our tired heads in her loving lap. It is time for me to switch it all off- the kitchen light, the whirring fan in the living room where the blare of the TV has filled the tiny space with its flurry of laughs, crimes and drama for the past two hours. I walk past the tiny altar in my home, waiting for the lamp to flicker softly and die out on its own as I pause to bend my head in prayer and gratitude for the day gone by.

Some scattered laundry calls my name as does the smell of freshly bought brown cover for my daughter’s school books as they lie in gentle disarray at the foot of my bed. I pause to think if I should cover one more and I realise that it can wait till tomorrow. Tying my hair up in a bun, I blink and peer into the mirror to check for dark circles, the ones that never really seem to go away, not with all the laughter in the world. Sighing, I tilt my head forward, splash water on my face and turn to switch off the lamp above the sink. The bed beckons, with its warm sheets as the howling wind outside picks up in crescendo to a raging gale now, rattling the window shades and slamming forgotten doors across homes in my building. Shrugging on my robe, I stand by the window and gaze into the pitch black of night, wondering at the souls who lie with no shelter above their heads.

Then, when I should be crawling into bed, I turn and stride into the next room, push my chair back and feel the words flowing out of my heart and head. There’s a need to sleep and a need to say something, all at once. A dam will burst, gushing forth in glory and grace, as I lay my heart out on these blue screens.

And I realise, writing doesn’t follow the earth’s rotational rules. Sometimes, we are just compelled.

To write.

I can sleep now.

pen image

37 thoughts on “Compelled- #AmWriting

  1. Every now and then I have a “why are all my ideas coming to me at 2am” kind of night, and I’m always exhausted–yet somehow creatively rejuvenated–the next day.

  2. There are so many ways one could have written about the compulsion one feels to write… at odd hours or in the shower… But the way you have put it across is just so beautiful, so lucid. I am in love with your words! <3

  3. I am compulsive writer myself without writing anything I can go crazy.It probably genetic too .My mom has the habits of scribbling /drawing somethings on the notepad.A inspiring post to read.:-)

  4. I rarely write late at night. Though sometimes the thoughts go crazy in my head. But the warm bed with the partner is always so inviting. πŸ™‚ But I can understand where you are coming from. Sometimes you just can’t stop.

      1. Yes, you have to. I just can’t because I have to wake up by 6 every morning as husband leaves early. And, I am a zombie if I don’t catch enough sleep. Just make a note and let the thoughts brew till next morning. πŸ™‚

  5. Damn thing be so unpredictable, I’ve had to stop eating, watching a soap, a bath, and work. And the words that come out aren’t in the least bit related. Inspiration herself is a muse.

  6. Oh, I hear you on this one Shailaja! πŸ˜‰ How many posts I have written late at night, not to mention reading and commenting on other posts AFTER that! πŸ˜‰ And yes, when my body and I thought mind is so fatigued. And yet the words need to be written…the need is so great! Compelled is the perfect word and the one I would have chosen too to describe such an experience. BTW, now you know what it was like for me during some of the challenges, up till 1 am, 2 am, even 3 am at times! No kidding! (And BTW, I love these two lines in particular: “…letting Sleep do her task of gently caressing our tired heads in her loving lap” and “Some scattered laundry calls my name as does …” – such poetic phrases and imagery. I felt I was right there with you! <3

  7. The muse comes on at all the wrong times, right? I was once addicted to this late-night writing but I found it chased away sleep. Even after I’d written my fill – my mind would be too active to fall asleep for a long long time. Not a nice place to be in.

      1. And yet you amaze us with new posts so deliciously coated with your thoughts every day, Shailaja. I’m sure your book will have a lot more to say, and a lot more for us to read. πŸ™‚

  8. Sometimes, I get them in the middle of completing a deadline. And I know, I just need to write it down, so I can concentrate on other stuff. But, thats what I love doing!

  9. you and your writing madness. So, after our little chat, this is what you did? Nice work, by the way. But keep the inspiration in a box. Some of us lesser mortals have a complex with the rate you’re churning out amazing posts πŸ˜›

    1. Yes, I knew you would say this after seeing it and I was dreading it, to be honest πŸ˜› But, honestly, it just came bursting out! I had no control. It was like another creature inhabited my body! I need an exorcism, I tell you πŸ˜›

  10. Hi Shailaja

    I enjoyed reading this so ooo much. So vivid, I too walked with u Β sharing yr feelings n thoughts as u moved thro’ the kitchen, Β ……


    Rajeshwari Mohan

    Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android

    From:”THE MOVING QUILL” Date:Thu, 28 May, 2015 at 0:22 Subject:[New post] Compelled- #AmWriting

    Shailaja/ The Moving Quill posted: “Midnight. It’s the time when people should be asleep, washing away the worries of the day and letting Sleep do her task of gently caressing our tired heads in her loving lap. It is time for me to switch it all off- the kitchen light, the whirring fan i”

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