My Fate Creeps Along

My Bildungsroman

Questions on Criticism

I as a creative writing major, I have to take seminars as part of the requirements to graduate. This semester I am taking a course called The Modern Arts Writer, where we read and discuss criticism as a medium and ultimately write a few critiques of our own. So far, I have been finding this course incredibly troubling. Why are we examining criticism? Is supposed to be its own art form? Is this just a course to expose us to practical criticism if we would like to become critics ourselves, or are we supposed to regard these articles as something more? I mean what is the point? Not to mention that the whole idea of criticism itself makes me uneasy. I understand that it is needed to provide some sort of accountability in the arts, but I hate the idea of someone passing judgement on another’s work which may effect the power and influence of the work itself. Art is so personal and subjective I often find critiques disconcerting. Who is anyone, to pass judgements on another person’s expression of the soul? The conceptions of “high art” and therefore conversely low art is just another power dynamic that I just wish we could get rid of, especially because art is such a uniquely human quality that is within of all of us, it’s on our genes. Why should what defines us be up for criticism? But perhaps I am just idealistic, I am young still.

Setting an Intention

Last winter I started practicing yoga, and at the beginning of every class we are told to set an intention for the practice as a way to focus our energy. For my first post, I am setting the intention of this blog to be a place for me to explore my writing, my identity and my ideas about the world. I hope I will feel comfortable to explore and chronicle what goes on in my mind, and pursue my thoughts to some sort of completion.

I named this blog after a phrase that stuck with me from one of my favorite books, Cervantes’ Don¬†Quixote. At one point in the novel, Quixote is describing one of his wild fantasies to his sidekick and companion Sancho and imagines a battle scene between two neighboring towns, when in reality he is seeing two separate herds of grazing sheep. As he is relating his vast imagination to Sancho, there was a detail that caught my eye. He describes the shield of one of his concocted¬†knights and rendered on the shield is a phrase, “Rastrea Mi Suerte.” While this phrase has many translations, my favorite is “My Fate Creeps Along.” While I am unsure why this has stuck with me through the years, I have found the personification of one’s personal fate creeping along the course of one’s life to be both beautiful and haunting, and somewhat reassuring. I am constantly envisioning my future and often get lost in my own imagination and ignore my present, but Rastrea Mi Suerte reminds me how no matter how much I imagine what lies ahead I must accept and follow the creeping and slow path of life.