I am what they call a “Wanderer.”  Not exactly a social pariah, more of a curiosity.  My disdain for social conventions puts me upon a lonely path, but I am not alone.  There are others like me; dark, brooding, faithless.  In another time we were called Writers.  Much like spiders who craft intricate webs to ensnare their prey, Writers painstakingly spin intricate phrases with the thread of words designed to trammel the unsuspecting Reader.

In another age, Writers were revered.  Turned and examined, magnified for detail, polished until their inherent nature shimmered in the light; their words lovingly bound in the finest of leather and placed high upon shelves as a beacon guiding the lost through the fog of Human condition.  We were Artisans and verbal Musicians, who, with the careful stroke of the pen cuts through the suffocating haze of uncertainty and lays straight the path toward true understanding.  But that was then.  Today, we are held in much lower esteem, not quite reviled, but avoided nonetheless. And so we Wander.

We Wanderers toil in the wee hours of the morning, honing our craft for eyes that cannot and will not see.  Our books, our life work, are used to prop open unruly doors and to serve as false counter-balance to the plasma screens and the computer monitors.  In a pinch, they still serve as excellent mortar to chuck at the wayward spouse.  Few of us who remain still wield the courage to load the printer with paper and actually print out that which we write.  As  long as our words remain framed in the relative safety of the Internet or the hidden Journals, no one can do more harm in their criticisms than the “delete” button or the roaring  fireplace  will allow.

We exist in the sharpened edges of social relevance, often cut asunder beneath the weight of the smart-phone and the IPad. We subsist by prostituting our vocabulary for a few meager coins of acknowledgement, often to our fellow Wanderers.  Yet we remain shackled to our craft and devoted to that slim chance that we might one day rise again in ascendency.  Like Moses, we roam the deserts of art with our tablets tightly tucked beneath our wings, searching for the promised land.

Until that day, we Wander.

12 thoughts on “THE WANDERER by D.L. McHale

  1. I’ve often had similar thoughts about the writing vocation. Especially with books like Fifty Shades of Grey outselling Harry Potter, sometimes I wonder if the present society has any need for us Wanderers. 😦

    • Every great (and bad) work has its time on earth–or on bookstore shelves; but Wanderers are exactly what society needs. We are the last vestige of hope for romance and adventure that people desire–yet not willing to seek–for fear of leaving the safety net of their own fearful mind.

    • It’s quite simple, really. If my writing can touch just one soul profoundly, I will have arrived. I would love to publish, but finding an editor when you are cash strapped and word heavy is a challenge. Some day.

  2. How lovingly penned (or typed) these words are. They do not strike me as pessimism or a ‘poor me’ attitude, merely a heartfelt reflection. I am touched. Consider that one more rung on Jacob’s ladder. 🙂

  3. Here i want to share with you my own perceptions about writer’s of today’s world.. Some 3 months back I started blogging for sharing my writings with the world, I was of the view that writers are some people with so many writing skills which make them distinguished from other people who are just skilled in changing their FB status and doing some tweets, but to my wonder everyone who is just capable of doing the latter things is called a writer especially in this cyber world.. I feel this is one of the valid justifications that most of us are really wanderers.. I appreciate your writing skills, Keep sharing 🙂

  4. I plan on sharing your thoughts with my writers’ group tomorrow. I feel as you do in your comment, if my words can make a difference to just one person, then I feel I will have succeeded. Here’s to hoping that the promised land includes the printed word as an honored, cherished art, and not a lost one.

  5. I agree. Writers are Wanderers…Vagabonds….who live their lives in many folds, in other people’s shoes—never committed to specific ideologies or way of life. This is the essence of writing about life from various perspectives.

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