Sometimes I hear faint echoes of lives I might have lived, not when summoned, because those are more properly classified as fantasies, but unbidden. Occasionally they’re catalyzed by conversations or actions I observe from others, interactions among couples, or when I run across a career that seems interesting. I could have done anything, but I didn’t. There’s still time, but not much, and I sense the end of it. Numbers have always seemed real not abstract to me and I see my own fading in the near distance. When my time ends, all time ends: the solipsistic universe of me.
The Daily Prompt: Faint
I use everything in my writing, like a depression era cook. Nothing goes to waste. While juicy bits might be served immediately, scraps and fat are not tossed out, but flung into the pot on a slow simmer. Bones and beaks will be cycled back in someday, just wait and see. Feathers float around the stove whispering poems as I stir the plot. Little feet line up on the windowsill awaiting their turn as I sweep broken shells into a corner. Oh, I haven’t forgotten what you’ve done. You’re just lucky my weapon is a pen and not a gun.
The Daily Prompt: Simmer
Some of you are probably going huh, wut, November? It’s the middle of the summer!
But a few of you will know exactly what I’m talking about.
November is coming.
And I’ve spent couple years faffing about writing poetry, NTTAWWT. Poetry is nice and all. Sometimes you just need to write poetry for a while… well, I do anyway. But then you get tired of creating adorable appetizers and delectable desserts and you want to make the main course again… you need to tell a story.
At some point in the near future, I’ll be organizing the poetry I wrote over the past few years, together with some relevant material from the distant past, into a new themed e-book available for purchase. I may also have one or more of my works narrated into an audio book and see how that goes. Dunno if I’ll do that with a poetry book or one of the romance novels; need to look into the whole dealio first, but it seems like a neat idea.
Aside from all that, however, the story drum is beginning to beat, faintly now, but slowly and steadily growing louder. Tell a story, beginning to end. So, savor my whimsical poasts and musings on social media for the moment. Soon it’ll be time to get serious again.
November is coming.
The Daily Prompt: Savor
You know you’re old when…
You get excited about the drugstore’s BOGO sale on vitamins and supplements. Used to be that BOGO’s got my attention when they were about cute shooze or yummy cupcakes or lacy lingerie or sparkly doodads, but how far we’ve come from all that nonsense.
A friend recommended the lipo-flavonoid supplement for my inner ear issues, and I found the CVS equivalent on BOGO day. I also found zinc, which was recommended for the same issue, and turmeric pills, for achies. A while back, I bought a vat of turmeric spice, on the advice of other friends, with the intention of adding some to all my foods, but it made everything inedible. I like my food to be yummy ~ it’s one of the last few pleasures I have, besides reading. I sound just like my father! Hey, how about that New York Times, greatest paper on earth, eh? (Inside joke, that no one gets but me.)
I made a lovely omelet: eggs, perfectly beaten; shredded cheese; veggies, etc. Sprinkled in salt, pepper, a tsp. of turmeric. Cooked it all up perfectly. It looked beautiful… and it was totally awful, not edible. I tossed the entire thing in the trash. Anyone need a giant bottle of turmeric? Come ‘n’ get it! Anyway, now I have it in pill form, hurrah.
My kitchen counter definitely looks like grandma central, which doesn’t bother me at all. I find myself embracing my elderliness, rather than fighting it. Why fight? Stressful, not to mention expensive. Besides, being old is the perfect excuse for not doing anything. I’m old, I’m tired, I’m staying home. Who can argue with that?
The Daily Prompt: Edible
It’s after 9pm and I’ve accomplished nothing tonight.
Well, that’s not precisely true. I spent time calling and emailing peeps in attempts to fix mistakes and figure out confuzzling stuff. But there’s so much more. I feel completely stressed out by all the things. I haven’t written any poetry lately, though I’ve scribbled down ideas when I’ve thought of them. That’s not the same though, a couple words here and there. You lose the mood, the feeling, the gestalt of the piece.
I didn’t do much over the long weekend because I didn’t feel well. But that’s not really true either. I cleaned a bunch, hung out with friends, watched fireworks, crossed a lot of items off my list. I keep adding stuff to the list though! I’ve been reading a good book (Ted Chiang’s Stories of Your Life), but I wasted some hours watching bad movies too. 😦
It seems as though all these electronic time-savers just gobble up more and more time. I long for the days of the checkbook and pencil ~ I am officially old now. So many of my hours are eaten up by “helpful” technology, a sparkly illusion of convenience. No, I’m not giving any of it up or asking for advice; I’m just complaining, right here on my laptop connected to the internet. It’s what I do.
I have a million tabs open up there… mostly poetry sites I want to check out, maybe to submit stuff, or to get ideas, or whatever. They’ve been open for days, maybe a week. But I’m not looking at them tonight ~ I’m too tired now. W10 wants to update again, but I can’t let it cuz I’d have to close the tabs. These tabs, and the whole North Korea problem… it’s all making me very anxious.
Happy belated 4th (USA readers), day late, dollar short.
The Daily Prompt: Illusion
I create best in silence and it’s easy enough to turn off the sound on all my devices. OK, maybe not the meowful one, but at least he goes into snooze mode frequently. ^..^ When I’m feeling especially creative, sometimes I even drive without music on. Weird, I know! But I absorb so much inspiration from my surroundings that even a bit more data can overwhelm me and paradoxically cause a creativity halt. I’m constantly bombarded with new ideas, almost all of which will turn out to be meh-sauce, but still… ya never know until you explore one a little.
The one noise I can’t turn off though is the ringing in my head. Twenty/four/seven my left ear vibrates with tinnitus and there’s nothing I can do about it. Incurable. Occasionally both ears are affected. I’m used to this, since it’s been going on for years, but the sound does interfere with writing now. Some days I simply can’t do much creative writing at all and have to be content with reading and/or watching movies. Not that this is so terrible. Love reading! Love movies!
If I get super excited by a new writing idea and think it’s the best thing ever, which hasn’t occurred in quite a while, the tinnitus volume appears to automagically dip by itself and I can focus 100%. Part of the problem may be that I remember getting excited by writing ideas in the past, and they mostly turned out to be nothing, so it’s difficult to summon up that kind of enthusiasm again.
The Daily Post: Volume
I have two kinds of poems in the pile: those based on a truth, however faint and hiding behind paint and glitter to make it more interesting, and those based on nothing. Often the nothing verse is technically better because I wrote it in school, carefully, for a grade. One of my nothing poems that I’ve lost now was about a beach in Rhode Island, where I’ve never been, and the professor, an acclaimed poet, said it was good. When I revealed the lie (because someone said the color of the water was wrong), he laughed and gave me an A. I felt good about that back then; I don’t now. (I wish I still had that pome however.)
The reason my poetry was often based on lies/nothing in the early years is because I hadn’t done anything yet. I hadn’t gone anywhere. There was no drama in my life, no big heartbreak. The poetry professors agreed with me that poetry could be fictional; only other students thought this was breaking some rule. I never questioned my own stance back then, since the professionals were on my side. And yet… and yet…
I’ve changed my mind, at least with respect to my own work. When I reread my old poems, I immediately know which is which. The false verse is hollow and dead on the page, no matter how “good” it is. It has no emotional resonance to me, no layering. But when I read one of the truthy poems, I feel the truth again, however old and buried. I know exactly what inspired me to write that pome. Of course I don’t know what someone else would feel reading it (maybe nothing ~ maybe they’d feel more reading one of the false verse poems), but the point is that I know.
I haven’t written false verse since I began writing poetry again several years ago. No matter what I write about now, something in the pome is true, even if it’s just one line or one emotion. These aren’t just words strung together for a grade ~ they actually mean something. Also, the old pomes I poast here for my loyal blogfans are the true ones only. No false verse for you.
Happy May! ❤
I am the desert:
My skin is swept with sand
Across a shelf of stone;
My hair is spiked with thorns.
Daylight bakes me into crust;
I release the warmth at night
To a spangled, velvet sky.
I wait for candy-drops of rain,
When scarlet will erupt
From shriveled fingertips.
[Revised from 1989 version]
The Daily Prompt: Pause
The search for nuance
Came up nil–
Not a single folder spilled
Out a poem or post
In all these years,
Not even a ghost;
No evidence I ever
Used a subtle, filmy
Of a word,
A mysterious trail of lace,
Leaving a coy, flirtatious trace,
Instead of my usual
Bludgeons of bluntness.
But it is this, dammit, I scream:
Can’t you see?
My shrieks echo ’round the mountain,
But Narcissus long ago
Fell into the stream,
And everyone else has
Packed up their picnics
And gone home…
It looks like rain.
It’s time to stop yelling, Paula;
Whisper your pain
To the slowly swirling clouds.
The Daily Prompt: Nuance