One of my other blogs got lonely today. In order to keep it from gathering dust, I wrote a piece that talks of obligation, creation, writing, and put it all in a package that takes its inspiration from the manual on poetry.
Calliope is one of my several personalities. I figure if you’re going to go to all the trouble of having more than one persona, you might as well give each one room to spread out.
So, if you’re bored, have time on your hands and just want to see something different that you get over here, pop over to Calliope. The fare over there has a different flavor than Claudsy’s Blog; at least, most of the time.
Enjoy yourselves. Comment if you desire.
Have you ever begun a project only to find yourself on a journey to a place where you discover as much about yourself as you do about the place where you stopped?
If you don’t remember, were you paying attention? This isn’t an idle question: truly. I’ve just found more of myself because of a place where I stopped.
The new site where Meena Rose and I have taken up part-time residence is stretching me in ways I never anticipated. I had my expectations of what would be required of me, and I had dreams of what I could contribute. I think that’s true anytime one launches a new project that will be shared with others.
During the past couple of days, I did necessary research in order to put together a post for this morning in the “Two Voices, One Song” Garden. Research is a normal part of writing. Ask any good writer. What surprised me was not my distraction quotient, but rather the depth of the distraction.
Surprise came with the reviewing portion of my research. I admit it; I got lost inside all of those videos. I watched the woman speak to a workshop group, not once, but several times on several videos. I listened and recalled what it was I’d put aside when my copy of “The Artist’s Way” was relegated to the bookcase.
My morning pages had become a thing of the past, no longer creating an advantage to my work and personal understanding. I’d given up that portion of my intent when I got too busy with daily tasks to remember that my inner self was more important than my public one.
When I finished commiserating with Muse concerning this lack in my daily routine, I went on to enjoy watching several videos of Dr. Wayne Dyer as he presented the Tao Te Ching and its use today. I’ve seen Dr. Dyer before and thoroughly enjoy his presentations. Beyond that enjoyment, I absorb the teachings and what they have to offer me and my life.
This stolen opportunity to take time for my inner self screamed out for more regular visits to a place of personal learning and expansion. I’ve been neglecting it for well over a year. I know, in my heart of hearts, I need to go back and pick it all up again.
Not only will backtracking help me personally, it will help my writing and my journey forward on this path I’ve chosen. This new/old exploration will solidify both my philosophy of life and my attention to living it. I believe that to be the most important use of my time when I’m not pounding a keyboard or nubbing a pencil.
Some celebrate new beginnings with parties, giveaways, and additional hoopla. I’m one of those who makes more time for thinking, studying, and exploration. Please join me in new wanderings both here and at “Two Voices, One Song.” I don’t know where this is taking me, but I’m sure going to enjoy the ride.
Until later, a bietot,
Small excursions energize me most of the time. Over the weekend Sister and I took a quick trip to Central Washington. This was a trip planned for a couple of months. I could hardly afford the time away, I thought.
I did have numerous projects clamoring for my attention, things pushed aside or in need of initial contact. By Friday I’d concluded how much I really needed time away from computer and familiar surroundings.
I know we just had a break away with the Mountain Man Rendezvous, but what I didn’t need was stimulation and the constant movement of people around me. Instead, the need arose for personal quiet and peace, to allow me to recharge my internal batteries and my Muse.
The five hour drive Saturday morning began the recharging process. I sat back, listening to Sister’s running commentary of locations and wildlife passing by along Highway 2.
Mule deer and whitetail waited politely until they appeared in the rearview mirror before leaping across the road. Bald eagles kept pace with us from above the asphalt. Red-tailed hawks and osprey watched from their sky-scraper perches to make sure we left their territories quickly.
Rivers and small lakes rested in stillness, reflecting the forests lining their banks or the mountain summits that cast massive shadows across the sun-kissed mirrors. Canada geese nested with goslings yards from the blue heron and mallards, while red-winged blackbirds swayed precariously on last year’s cattail stalks.
The Kootenai River splashed along its bed heading back for the Canada. Clear skies colored with the peculiar shade of pale French blue spoke to us a warm temperatures and luscious clean air. The relaxation began, even as conversation flowed between us and the radio played softly in the background. There were no expectations other than our own. We were free for a little while.
Once we arrived at our destination, we had extra time to have a picnic. The city park in Connell was, as always, well-kept and ready for use. Under the shade of cottonwood trees we opened up the stocked cooler in the back and filled our plates. Sesame Garlic Chicken made room for homemade potato salad (a once monthly treat), and a stack of cut celery mingled with split baby carrots and sliced zucchini that kept the ranch dip separated from the rest. Zucchini nut bread waited for its chance to stand up and be counted as our dessert.
After our lunch left us ready for naps, Sister needed to take me down to one of the local eateries so that I had a comfy place to wait for her. She was going to be visiting her eldest son. I was going to work until her return that evening; a plan that suited my writing needs wonderfully.
From eleven thirty until seven in the evening, I worked with paper and pencil to catch up on work without the distraction on a computer or constant interruptions. It was bliss in so many ways. A low murmur of voices crept into my hidden corner on occasion to remind me that others shared the space.
A lovely young waitress slid in every other hour or so to refresh my ice needs or top off the iced tea picture. Otherwise, I was left alone to work. They’re used to me doing a day’s work there, which is a good thing.
By the time Sister returned for me, I’d filled dozens of pages with work. Editorial calendars for the next two months filled their section. Goals lists snuggled close by. A list of prompts to be used for a friend’s book of poetry waited for typing and a send-off. A guest blog was finished and awaiting the same fate.
Four new poems—three for publication submission and one for my poetry book “Ancient Reflections” filled their portion of my notebook. Notes on the epic fantasy I’m writing sprawled across their own pages.
I’d been on a writing, planning, calculating day’s journey and had tangible work to show for it. I was feeling smug, for my own sake. It had been one of the best writing days I’ve had in months, and I knew that I needed to plan at least one of these days away from home at least once a month.
The return journey was long and tiring. We got halfway home before fatigue forced us to sleep. Yesterday morning we continued home, where we crashed and burned completely.
Was it worth it? Oh yeah. BJ got great nature photos for use later. I got more done that I had much of the week before. And along the way we’d rediscovered what we’d enjoyed so much about traveling. I figure we did well, all things considered.
Today began the new schedule for me and one filled with even more than the previous week. Now, though, I have the key to getting it all dealt with. Re-energizing is necessary for both mental and physical health. I hope everyone can get renewed as often as I intend to in future. Be sure to comment with your own measures to re-energize. I look forward to seeing how others do it.
- Mixing It Up with Poetry (claudsy.wordpress.com)
- Makinson Island – A Peaceful Retreat in Kissimmee, Florida (betterinbulk.net)
- Some Much Needed R&R (weddingbee.com)
- Turkey and Bald Eagle Sitings (jbense.wordpress.com)
- Sit Back, Relax, and Enjoy the . . . Salt Cave? (bellasugar.com)
Today’s poem challenge is to write about an animal, addressing any aspect desired. Okay, I can do that. Like most people I’m fond of animals. They serve so many purposes within our lives that to have a world devoid of them seems sacrilegious.
Growing up in the country guaranteed that I knew and appreciated the roles of animals in our daily lives. So many years later, I still consider them the gifts of the earth, put on loan to us; teachers to teach us how to be guardians. You can decide for yourselves if we’ve ever learned the lessons.
Some creatures inhabit our dwellings as friends and family members. Others enrich our lives with their colors, textures, uniqueness, and myriad dimensions. The poems I’ve done today for this challenge are from both sides of the animal question; in house and outside it.
As always, I hope you enjoy these small efforts of mine. Take the time to comment; share some of your animal tales with others, if you wish. Above all, take a good look at what your life would be like without the non-human inhabitants in your life.
Brandy orbs trusting, I see
Filled with love looking at me,
Gentle power of loyalty
Ever near, ever dear sentry.
Raise the call with nose held high
Licker of feet for miles gone by,
Pass this way my care to enjoy
Walk at heel my life an envoy.
© Claudette J. Young 2012
Screams fill the night,
Terrorizing the listener.
Finger hovers over 911,
Until reason asserts truth.
Her annual mating ritual begins
With blood-chilling siren song,
Seeking company for the nonce,
The vixen readies to entertain.
© Claudette Young 2012
I begin my day like most people. Yet, within ten minutes of getting up the computer is one and I’m in my chair beginning the day. The time of day varies according to the hour I got to bed the night before.
This month, which is winding down and has many of us scrambling to complete writing challenges accepted twenty-three days ago, has forced me to accomplish at least four things each day that wouldn’t have been there otherwise. That’s a huge change, but a welcome one. Even as I feel harried on occasion, I also feel vindicated in my belief in self. If nothing else has come of this month, I have that for however long I choose to remain true to it.
Since I’ve already announced the poetry prompt of the day, let’s get on with it. I hope you enjoy these offerings for this Monday morning.
God’s Alarm Today
Ribbons of ethereal light-splashed color
Pour out their hearts for my sake,
To bring me back into this waking world
Without need for jangling noise
Or mind-bending musical accompaniment.
© Claudette J. Young 2012
A moan, a stretch, each signals awareness
Of body, long seconds before mind is engaged,
Just before spirit reclaims thought to realize
Your presence is gone with night’s dream.
Wonderment at spirit’s choice of companions
Floods the body, releasing joys at reunion
With one absent so long from life’s path,
Giving solace with knowledge of future visits.
© Claudette J. Young 2012
Participants were handed an interesting writing challenge this morning. We were asked to write an “under the microscope” poem; either literal or metaphorical.
I doubt many of us can leap into our labs, scan a few slides and take up the scientific poetic slant, but you never know. I may try one later today; I do have a couple of ideas that travel that path.
My first attempt to satisfy this challenge is below. I’m not sure why Muse took me on this tangent, but it was the first thought to jump up and demand my attention.
I hope you enjoy the resulting fare.
What Price Celebrity
What price paid for fame
That we seek this scrutiny?
What price extracted in a game
Of hide and seek and infamy?
What price do innocents pay
For camera shots at school,
Where others are brought to bay
And thrill-makers stand to drool?
What price for bodies abused
For weight, highs, lows, or sleep?
What price to be so pursued,
In the name of love, admiration deep?
What price paid for a moment’s peace
Within the fish bowl of personal making?
- A to Z Challenge ~ “O” over here… over there… places to play (haikulovesongs.wordpress.com)
- First Award (littlefurrow.wordpress.com)
- A Thing of Beauty (littlefurrow.wordpress.com)
- A Poem We Will Go (claudsy.wordpress.com)
Serendipity waves her wand across our lives on a regular basis, whether we realize it or not. I read Robert Lee Brewer’s Poetic Asides writing prompt this morning and thought, “Yep, I can do that one and had a title immediately.”
It wasn’t an original title; so few really are original. On fill-in-the-blank prompts, Muse either slips you filler quickly or not. I took an unconscious page from my old IBM days and did an “if, then else” statement in my head after I wrote the title. **For those unfamiliar with old programming code, an “if, then else” statement is one which is a prompt in itself. “If X happens, then what will happen next. If X does not happen, the what will happen next.”
For Robert’s Day 20 Prompt—Use “Let’s (blank)” as title. Fill-in the blank with word/phrase, use as title, and write the poem to it, my mind went to an old roommate back in the seventies and how things went from there. I called it–
Let’s Dance the Night Away
Two AM call caught us finally sitting,
A pair of disco addicts who came each night
To crowd a small floor, meet with friends
And laugh with others in new steps.
You faded from my life not long after,
A need that required distance to perform
Without recriminations or ever-afters,
A fact you could never appreciate.
Two to tango was never the real problem,
Though taking advantage was your forte,
For a con man needs only a woman’s faith,
Never was my enjoyment at issue.
Frankly I outgrew your need to mooch and moan;
Now my life and resources are my own.
© Claudette J. Young 2012
Along the same lines but with different outcomes, just a couple of days ago, I reconnected with an old friend with whom I hadn’t talked since the mid-nineties. This was a person for whom I’ve searched for years with no success. He, too, had searched for me. Now that reconnection has ensued, life seems smoother than days before.
There’s so much to catch up on, so many personal travel logs to read. As I look toward this acquaintance process, I can’t help but look at this poem as a kind of letting-go of unfortunate experiences and a taking-up of those which uplift and secure.
Serendipity strikes again. Did she see it coming? Were the two events entwined on my star chart under a heading of “Let’s put things right”?
I hope you enjoy this day’s offering. Please leave a comment as you wish. Here’s hoping Serendipity waves her wand over you today.
Again, wide open prompts like this one bring out a creative spark in people who must be seen to be believed. Humor cuddles with inspiration; absurdity takes a swing at nonsense, at the same time that both end with profound observations; teasers dive off the board into a sea of emotive pieces that defy categories; and cento makes an appearance from a pro. You just can’t predict what you’ll find inside the prompt’s comment section.
Take mine, for instance. When I began writing this morning, I intended to write about having been given the wrong directions for driving to a specific location. Not a difficult assignment from myself.
I got eight lines in and realized that Muse was dictating again on a subject that paralleled my intent. It became inspirational instead, surprising me as much as anyone. And I allowed it. Here it is for your perusal. Enjoy reading.
Much Needed Surprise
I followed your directions,
Though there were missteps.
I’d begin once again,
Hoping to make no detours.
I left early but arrived on time
To your doorstep, a marvel sublime.
A picket fence greeted me,
Banking rivers of pansies,
Holding back a flood of color.
I didn’t think you’d remember
My favorite flowers and all.
You kept my swing company
Until I arrived to feel the peace,
Created for me by your side.
There, within your glory I’ll
Live for all eternity, a child
Learning To Be as one with thee.
© Claudette J. Young 2012
Below is the poem I wrote this morning for Poetic Bloomings, which required verse focused on “senses” in all their definitions.
We hear world’s echoes,
And see daydreams unfold.
Aromas fill our heads instead of humor,
With joys known or
Disgust at odorous repeats.
Fingers trace life’s passing,
While feet feel roads beneath.
And taste sensations
Keep our appetites replete.
© Claudette J. Young 2012
When the Poetic Asides prompt rose before me on the screen this morning, my mind began to whirl. With a prompt that simply said “Write about something from before your time,” multitudes of possibilities vied for my attention.
What kind of things from the past? What memories of family stories should I tempt with an escape path? Should I do a poem about an event that occurred just before my birth that I could not have witnessed, but which affected me in a personal way?
The poem that I chose to do is one which speaks to and of times in the dim past; time when gods walked among men and creatures of lore were commonplace; a time, whether mythical or real, continues to form much of the basis of literature today.
I hope you enjoy this small effort of mine. It will soon take its place within a book of poetry that I’m working on titled “Forest Primeval,” after I’ve done a thorough rewrite of it.
In The Beginning
When moss covered your stone walls,
And days crept to the staggered step of age,
Memories became legend,
Legend moved to make myth of history.
Horses flew, Olympus reigned.
Dwarves burrowed deep, hammers ringing against gold,
Forging palace treasures bright.
Giants walked and played with gods on this Earth.
Gods fought, jealous foes did war,
Gods’ magics did turn, slaying their jester.
Fist-held power strangled all,
Lightning struck both bearer and those fleeing.
Winged horses, heroes gone,
Man-eating play things making Earth their home.
Beware, Mighty Ones, servants
Who have power to shape the world they own.
For magic ones did travel,
Living where whim allowed for freedom’s play,
Cared not for old gods’ verdicts,
But for personal power gain in time.
Only time will show what prompt will appear for tomorrow’s test of poetic endeavor. Be sure to stop back by to see what time will bring out into the open.
© Claudette J. Young 2012
These are my efforts in Tanka today. Each follows the proper form of 5-7-5-7-7. Each attempt to tell a complete story in five lines. I hope all will enjoy them.
Poetic Bloomings Wednesday In-Form Poetry Challenge for April 4, 2012—Tanka
Drum beats bring dancers,
Prayers rise to Heaven’s gate.
Rain’s presence called forth.
Supplication pleases God
Who delivers needed rain.
When sight fails for speed,
Events scream for attention.
Metalic paint scrapes,
Tempers flare for all to see,
Solving problems with nonsense.
Strains, soft with whimsy,
Sliding behind closed eyelids,
Relax and write now.
Muse sends song’s delicate voice
To woo the vision within.
I’ll return this evening with my sestina for the day. Happy reading, all.
© Claudette J. Young 2012
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