Inspiration is jumping on bubble wrap. There is the sudden simple delight of discovering that unbroken sheet—and to think, Dad was about to throw it away! I mischievously glance over my shoulders before I mar the silence of the clean page. I slide my bare foot to the corner of the plastic and apply pressure, more pressure to the first bubble: the light turns green and I ease onto the accelerator.
It is here that impish grin becomes unabashed smile, and before the childish joy escapes me, I’m jumping up and down. Words burst from my pen in popcorn staccato. I find myself laughing out loud as my dancing feet search out every inch of the story.
As quickly as it began, it is over—the last puff of air squeezed out between hungry toes. Emptiness remains, not the barren emptiness of the parched desert, but the satisfying emptiness of my dinner plate at 3pm Thanksgiving Day. Because in that emptiness, there is the strange hope that someday all that stale air on the page might mean something.