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Category Archives: Writing

Identify yourself, blog.

In my loooong spell of not writing, one of the things I did (besides hiding and wallowing incessantly) was read blogs upon blogs upon blogs (Of course doing this led me to more wallowing and self loathing, but let’s not talk about that now, shall we?)

This sick habit brought upon me the stark realization that most blogs had some sort of identity; for example, they talked about travel, writing, houses, business, food… you know– topics. I quickly realized that mine was sort of like a lost dog (without a name), wandering aimlessly in the night, far, far away from home, without one of those creepy GPS chips that would bring it home safely.  I realized it was sort of the Seinfeld of blogs… meaning, it was really about, well, nothing in particular. Oh.

Really, this shouldn’t have surprised me in the least bit, because frankly, I’m a bit like a lost (nameless) dog wandering aimlessly in the night (and there is no way I’d ever have GPS implanted under my skin). I like to think about a lot of things (sometimes obsessively). How could I limit myself to just one topic? The horror! The—GASP– commitment!  Run, run quickly!

And run is exactly what I did for oh, about 9 months (ONE baby comment on that line and I’m hunting you down and kicking your ass, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back style). When I finally sat down to face writing again, I realized this blog is simply about life. Uh, obviously, right? Ok, fine.  I know that’s a broad statement, but that’s what life is—a broad variety of ‘topics’ flowing together. Some days, it’s about nothing. Some days it’s emotional, some days it’s funny. Some days you take trips, others you sit at home and wonder what the hell went wrong.

So there you have it—my blog’s identity is that its identity is ever changing, much like its writer. There will be bullshit, travel, nothingness, observations, and maybe sometimes an inspiration or two (of the most cynical variety, naturally). So there it is– my blog’s identity is multilayered— sometimes I travel, but mostly I just think, observe or write. What more do you need?

(That is, of course, a rhetorical question. I fully understand cheese, bread and the movie Goodfellas are essential to life)

But Elephants are SO Cute.

Sure they are.

Unless, of course, they are standing in the middle of your room, and you try to ignore them. Then, they tend to be a big ol’ problem.

Don't blame your failures on me, woman!

Yes, I suffered a serious lack of writing.

What are you, my boss? No? Then leave me be! I’m kidding. Please don’t leave, because then I’d be down to 3 readers, and I hate things that are uneven.

Let’s just say I’ve been…. Underground. No need to bore you with the details… I mean, it’s not like I’m a storyteller or anything. Wait, what? Oh, ignore this whole line.

I wish I could promise I’d never leave you again, but that involves commitment, something which I’m really not good friends with.  But seriously, this should make you like me more, what with the whole ‘she might not be around forever so read her while you can’ thing floating in the air.  It’s like being a ‘limited edition’ or having an expiration date.

Regardless, we shall resume from here and pretend like nothing ever happened, because that’s what old friends do.

The truth is, sometimes artists suffer at the hands of their own craft. The muse becomes the tormentor, the art becomes a plague, so we avoid, avoid, avoid.  I found myself avoiding, but you can’t ignore your love forever, right? (What’s that? You can? I must have missed that option. Damn. Oh well, on with the writing!)

As they say, the only way out is through.

Just Before Sunset.

The air is soft and comforting; a soft  blanket of breeze flutters the hair, caresses the face. The earth is covered in peaceful silence. An occasional bird sings, perhaps a love song to its mate; inspired by the moment.  The dropping sun emits a soft glow like candlelight, soothing and romantic, like golden liquid dripping from azure sky.  The color of the grass is meandering… retiring summer green, paving the way for a cascade of colorful leaves. The wildflowers are shrinking, but no less radiant—fading purple flowers on fading green grass, a perfect compliment from the paintbrush of Mother Nature, a final goodbye to the season.  I feel compelled to linger, to feel the fresh air delight my skin; make my lungs feel pure and refreshed.  I stare at the trees, which in days will sport the decadent colors of fall before giving way to the stoic skeleton arms of winter.

What Aisle is the Inspiration On, Please?

Writers are usually keen observers of life. You will often times find us just sitting and staring, semi-detached and apart from life; an outsider looking in.  We usually prefer it that way… just stick us in a comer and let us be—don’t talk to us, but make sure to talk around us. We are typically great listeners with 24/7 thoughts. Sadly, though, those 24/7 thoughts sometimes keep us locked in our own heads (there is so much there to entertain us!), desperately trying to catalog chaotic thoughts and harvest only those that inspire and move us. Sometimes, the harvest is rotten, and we are forced to go back and listen some more. And more, and more, and more….you get the picture. It is, honestly, exhausting at times.  At times, there are many thoughts, but nothing inspiring, leaving us desperately searching for something inspiring, which is a problem. Inspiration usually comes when you least expect it, when you are most free from the obsessive qualities that inhabit a writer in the everyday world. 

Oh, how I sometimes wish they just sold inspiration in a pretty little box at Rite Aid.  ((Sigh))

Ode to Pablo Neruda.

The words ooze sensuality on the page in a way so romantic, even the most cynical person (myself included) cannot help slowly becoming a victim of the swooning.  It’s steamy tropical heat rising off the pages. Lush lyricism enchants, the hands on the book begin to sweat. It mesmerizes. It’s the highest extension of passion on paper.  It’s at once heart melting, heart breaking, gut wrenching and emotional enough to make you want to find a lost love and pour out long held emotions at their feet. It removes all sense of logic and rationalization. The feelings are those of love, the pain that comes with love, and the all too familiar feeling of loss that inevitably follows true love. That is what is so special about Neruda; he writes of the knee weakening love that should be approached with relish and passion because he is certain that is will not stay perfectly unbroken forever. It cannot. No love ever does. And therein lays the magic of poetry, of Neruda. He loves with reckless abandon and suffers the consequences. 

Certain books, especially– 100 Love Sonnets and 20 Love Poems and A Song of Despair– should come with a warning: there is no telling what you may do once intoxicated.  

 

From 100 Love Sonnets

…I loved you without knowing I did; I searched to remember you.
I broke into houses to steal your likeness,
though I already knew what you were like. And, suddenly,
when you were there with me I touched you, and my life
stopped…

From I Like For You To Be Still in Twenty Love Poems and A Song of Despair

I like for you to be still: it is as though you were absent,
And you hear me from far away and my voice does not touch you.
I like for you to be still: it is as though you were absent,
distant and full of sorrow as though you had died.
One word then, one smile, is enough.
And I am happy, happy that it’s not true.

 From my personal favorite, Tonight I Can Write In Twenty Love Poems and A Song of Despair

Tonight I can write the saddest lines.
To think that I do not have her. To feel that I have lost her.
My sight tries to find her as though to bring her closer
My heart looks for her, and she is not with me.

 

 Unlike what you may think, I like to read Mr. Neruda when I’m floating on a sea of despair. He shows how pain can be lyrical, and also necessary.  I also know there are many unflattering things about his personal world, but they are erased from my memory the moment I encounter his words; an effect not unlike that which happens when you find yourself knee deep in love.

 

Gracias por mostrarnos su alma, Senor Neruda.

Happy Birthday, Blog!

 A year ago, I started out on this little adventure. Who would read? I thought… and I’m kind of still thinking that.

 Kidding!

It’s been a fun year of putting my thoughts out there, forcing me to be more disciplined about writing, the only thing that matters in life (Aside from travel. And cheese).

I don’t want to go all mushy and lovey dovey and all butterflies and baby kittens and all that, for fear it may ruin my surly and cynical reputation (What? You thought I was nice? You’re so silly!! Oh, wait, I want you to read my blog… ok, I am nice! Butterflies, kittens, yaay!!)

So, I’ll make it a quick little shout out.

Thank you to all my new friends who have said so many wonderfully kind, encouraging words as the days slipped off the calendar.  You really can’t imagine my joy at the positive feedback that you, my handful of readers, has given me (and seriously, the word “joy” and I don’t normally make appearances together, so really, thank you!)

 I enjoy your visits, your comments and your blogs, as I have been lucky enough to connect with some brilliant writers and artists.  Thank you!

Next post—travel back to Costa Rica with me for part 2 of my adventure!

Dear Writing:

I did not choose you; you choose me. Why I first picked up a pen and let my hand run rampant amongst my thoughts, I do not know. You put the thoughts, rapid fire growing seeds, in my brain. You begged my hand to feel the smooth caress of the paper beneath me, to throw you all over the page haphazardly and passionate or neatly controlled and organized.  You smiled when you saw the page filled in all its silky glory, didn’t you? My heart is tied by you, but my hands are not… they are set free and running, endless inspiration transferring from brain to hand and back. You have thrown me into the fire, hoping that I would unleash.
You were right.

You were there for me when I couldn’t speak. You set me free when my tongue was tied. You allowed me the freedom to scream, curse, cry, love, hate, feel indifferent, find comfort, and seek to change.  You let me reach others when they seemed out of reach. You have, at times, been my only friend, my only true confidant.

I have put it all on paper, the highs, and the lows. I have found endless inspiration and sprawled words on page.  I must yield to you, even though you don’t bring me riches or notoriety or fame.  I put it all into you, because it’s the only choice. I do this only for me, and for you.

There may never be glory, my name may never be spoken in any “circles” be they right or wrong. My words may never strike a person so deep that they feel as if I’m talking directly to them. No.  They may fall here now, on this page, and stay here forever, eternally waiting, eternally unread. And yet, writing, I cannot release you. I hold you, run to you every day, with a need to put pen to paper and let the words wash the page in whatever emotion the moment brings.

We are star crossed lovers, you and I, forever dwelling in unrequited love.

I will never give you up, and you will always hold me in your grip. You have plagued me, you have pained me, you have helped me…but most of all, you have set me free.