- a hope or ambition of achieving something: the needs and aspirations of the people[mass noun]:the yawning gulf between aspiration and reality
- Medicine: the action or process of drawing breath.
- the action of drawing fluid by suction from a vessel or cavity: bathing solutions were changed by careful aspiration
I love that a single word can have very different meanings. I also love trying to make connections between those meanings.
As I sat down to write this post, I knew one thing only: That I wanted to start with a word. I wasn’t sure which word, as I wasn’t sure what I really wanted to say. The word “wine” came to mind, as in “I’ve had a few glasses,” but where’s the inspiration in that? The interest? The idea? Which leads me to ASPIRATION.
For months I’ve been thinking about what I wanted to accomplish vis a vis an MFA. Initially my desire to go back to school was threefold: To learn to be a better writer, to be in communion with other writers, and to not go insane. Words have always been my savior, 2010 was no different. But now it is 2012. What’s next?
I cannot count the number of disdainful glances I’ve received upon saying, “I’m going for my MFA,” or more recently, “I’ve just completed my MFA.” For sure, most people are supportive and congratulatory. But there are also those who have read too many trade magazines–which run articles against MFA programs almost as often as they do for MFA programs. “Mmmm,” is always the first part of the reply. Then, “Don’t you think MFAs are over-rated?” Or, “I thought about getting an MFA, but decided I already know everything I need to know about writing.” Or, “MFA programs turn out cookie cutter writers.” Or, “MFA programs teach people how to read, not write.”
And like a progressive at an NRA meeting, I jump to defend my position. Except, lately, I’ve decided to stop defending. Which leads me to ASPIRATION:
“the action of drawing fluid by suction from a vessel or cavity.” The cavity being my brain, my being, my heart and lungs and liver. The fluid being stasis. The suction being progress. Progress leading to ASPIRATION:
“the action or process of drawing breath.” Made possible only by forward motion, made possible by education, made possible by words (Naropa. Modernism, Surrealism. Time. Space. Stein. Oliver. Ginsberg. Akhmatova. Contemplative. Activism. MFA), leading once again to ASPIRATION:
“a hope or ambition of achieving something.” Leading once again to, ASPIRATION:
as in hope. As in ambition. As in desire. I have all three. Like a drug they creep about in my veins, whispering to me. Inviting me to play in the street, run with scissors, drive under the influence.
So what are they. these aspirations that came about due to an aspiration (medical) which makes aspiration (physical) possible?
1) To get myself published, once and freaking for all.
2) To publish others, via WordJunkies Press.
3) To earn a few dollars—not many, just enough to make filing my taxes less humiliating.
4) To learn letterpress.
Aspiration: February 18, 2012