Jacqueline Ross is a published author of fiction and non-fiction. She has had novels published for adults and children, including Messy Business by Simon and Schuster in 2001. Jacqueline has written numerous non-fiction books for Hyphen, feature articles for newspapers, and short stories for literary journals. She has a PhD in creative writing and a BA in Professional Writing and Editing. Jacqueline has taught writing at Swinburne University since 2007.

The Seasons of Ambivalence

You are the gloom of winter and the glare of summer. If you were spring and autumn, there would be breath and space. Spring and autumn make no demands - they are seasons that give back.

But you are all want and need.

In summer you spark. Creativity thrums though you, inspiration flashing neon in your eyes.  How seductive is the shape of that light, the generosity of curves and circles that promise forever but can only last one season. The words and music are all glare and reflection. Because neon shines too brightly, and although it promises to be real, cannot be sustained. Like summer, it flares but then flickers, and is gone.

You  are never autumn, tumbling instead into the bitter rut of winter. Autumn could be your transition. A time when your eyes see amber, russet, gold - a kaleidoscope of colour and possibility to store away for sustenance before the instant fall of winter’s dark. In autumn you could let those fat words languish. Left alone they might find a way to illuminate another season.

Now you are winter and creativity has fled. There is not even a wink of light.  Your eyes turn inky black in the smothering fog, and there is nothing but surrender. When you are winter, words and music have disappeared, and you cannot imagine a time that they were ever yours.

But eventually the season turns. Now you face an impossible task, turning into a neon summer once again, without pause for spring. And this is your greatest loss. Because in spring stories abound and the world hums with music, for this is the season of beginnings. In spring, your imagination would roam, free from the demands of summer brilliance. Your eyes would see budding stories and fresh tunes that sing of the future - and how clear that vision would be.

Because in spring, want and need are gone.

There is only love.