On one’s journey of individuation, one journey’s away from the collective into an inner landscape that tests one to the limits. There is no one to stand in front or beside to offer help and protection. It is a solitary journey filled with all the hazards, ghosts and monsters that have been buried, denied and forgotten. There is no suit of armor that one can wear for protection. It is as though one is forced to venture forth naked.
I want to look at this Jungian view of becoming a more conscious individual in the microcosm of myself as author here in my tiny community of just over 500 souls. Some of the community, not many, have known of my nude tendencies for a few years. The rest of the community simply know me as a quiet person who once was the principal in the community’s school. With the sale of my “Broken Road” series books, many now know so much more about who I am and my history. Almost fifty books have sold in this town, including a few copies of my Naked Poetry books. And now, three of my books (not the Naked Poetry books) have been placed in the community library.
The neighbour who lives in the house to the right of the driveway outside of my garden gate owns all of my books including the poetry books. She wants to arrange for a few local and regional papers to meet with me in order to get my stories out to more people with the idea of having more of my books sold. There is a slight hesitation on my part as it would mean that my quiet, almost invisible existence in the community would be over.
And so, I find myself standing at the gate wondering if I dare to step out of the safety of my private garden and let everyone see all the warts and wounds that have carved what has become the man I am today.