Saturday, May 28, 2005

More gifts

To those googling chicken-eating spider, there are none here. It was a reference to a potential poem, so off you go!! Hee. Sorry for the interruption in your googling.

Yesterday was a full day. I was inspired in so many different kinds of ways. I let my life inspire me. I let it flow to see where the river leads. I was given a gift from a response elsewhere that has led to me to know in what direction I am going to take a certain character in my story. I was inspired with newfound energy from friends. I think much of the need of the writer is to let his or her life inform what they write. I haven’t decided if I believe in muses or not. I think it might just be a willingness to allow life around you to affect you. The muse is the guiding hand that lets you see, lets you be.

Gratitude is what you give yourself when you are glad. It is what you feel when you see the light of the wider world. Those that cannot be grateful are doomed to never see light in their world. What a tiny little dark place where I never hope to live.

Writing has been a way for me to express me. I didn’t write for a long time, other things took up my time. But now I have a chance to do this, and it allows me to feel more complete. I have the opportunity to do this and for that I am grateful too. I used to think feeling humbled was giving up control, giving up strength. I don’t anymore. But then again, I used to feel that way about gratitude too. Funny how things change. Perceptions about the wider view are absorbed …like a conk on the head.

My story has several conks on the head. One a tragedy, one a gift. Two sides of the same shiny coin. There is value accrued in everything if you let it shape you.

Some Larkin because I like Larkin:

Philip Larkin - To Put One Brick Upon Another

To put one brick upon another,
Add a third and then a forth,
Leaves no time to wonder whether
What you do has any worth.

But to sit with bricks around you
While the winds of heaven bawl
Weighing what you should or can do
Leaves no doubt of it at all.

Brilliant poem. Have a great day!

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Burning

It doesn't happen very often, but I am swirling now. I wrote a poem. Yes, one of those ordered groups of words that I wrote so many of a month ago. But this one has me burning. I am almost afraid of it. When one goes to the center, one can be burned. How is that for removing myself from my own poetry? Wow, sometimes it just happens. The muse, whatever you want to call it descends and starts that fire. Not Joel, but little old me. Sometimes it just happens the way it should.

Maybe it was the James Joyce I was reading. Don't know, but I am very glad.

Mood: thrilled

Friday, May 20, 2005

Update?

I have been thinking about what to post here for a while now. I haven’t come up with much.

I printed out my story and I have to say, seeing it after an absence of a few weeks has been good. The offline off-paper mulling over of this story, coupled with new eyes has made me see its strong points and its many weak points. I need to add much more detail in the early part of the story.

I had planned on not having any dialogue until Trapper meets Iris but now I am not so sure that will work. It sounds too telly rather than showy. And with all of the readings I have done recently on the writer’s process, I have realized the holes the story has in technique. I have so much to do with this story. It is really boggling to see that. But… it is not a problem. I accept that aspect. I guess the problem would be if I could not see where I need to work on it. Even, in many years (ha) when this is finished, it will not be finished. As I realize what I need to do, then I want to go back and fix. I don’t see that ever ending. That is ok too.

I have realized a few other plot details too. Those were lacking for a while but now they seem to have evolved.

April’s poems took so much out of me that I hope there is stuff left. I am sure there is, there always is, but finding it, retrieving it may be the challenge.

I also find myself being lured away by other novels. I am looking at them differently now. I am looking at style, technique something I really never did so purposefully before. Plot, theme, and characterization were what interested me. Now I want to see the structure. How the heck did he/she do that? The quilting of words and the fine detail of choice is what is fascinating me now. As my view changes, so must my words. I wonder if anyone but me can tell? I have no idea about that. In some ways the process is so personal, that must inform that what is born from this process.

This is what this is really about. My story. Everything I write seems to circle back to this.

So I keep writing.

Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Britain, UK news from The Times and The Sunday Times - Times Online

Britain, UK news from The Times and The Sunday Times - Times Online

Is this too cool or what? From Choriamb. The Donne love continues. Sigh. So much complexity.

Friday, May 06, 2005

Regrouping

No poetry for you today, just a few thoughts about the month of April. As my icon says, it wasn’t cruel. It was beautiful. It was challenging and thought provoking. Mostly challenging, as the thoughts got a little thin by the end. The NaPoWriMo diet. It revealed more than just poetry, it illuminated who friends are, and conversely who friends aren’t and that surprised me. But that is always a good thing because better not to expect anything from people who don’t want to hear from you. Knowing is always better. Cleansing breezes that bluster resulting in refinement and editing to discover the core. We do this with what we write, so maybe best to do it with friendship too. Winnowing and gathering.

I can’t believe I wrote 30 poems. That was the challenge and I am happy to have completed it. I know there are tidbits amongst those poems, bits that will go on to be better poems. That will be my challenge now. I had said that I would try to write at least one line a day. Well I am so poetically spent from April that even reading poetry is difficult right now. It blurs. I refuse to cheapen the experience by skimming. So I haven’t read much. I want to get back and do crits of other’s poems at the PFFA but I haven’t the heart to skim. Those writers deserve more than that. I will allow a few more days of refilling, for that pool is bottomless, before I head over there. I get the impression that is what many people are doing. Refilling.

I have only written 4 lines of poetry since the end of April. I did write a fairy tale for the first time. I enjoy that the word to describe these tales is Fairy. The imagined lightness with wings yet they contain so much weighty darkness. Mine does. But I do think that the ending is uplifting. Not happily ever after, but maybe a challenge to see things differently, thereby allowing the potential for a happily ever after. That is all we can ask.

Trapper has been sneaking around too. He keeps visiting me, and I am going to have to do something about him soon. I need a new printer cartridge and that is the only reason I haven’t printed out all of those words. I can’t even remember how many now. 15K, 20K? Boggling numbers to me. I am looking foreword to rediscovering those words, those characters.

I went to my book club last night. Willa Cather’s The Professor’s House. We were lucky to have the husband of one of the women attending give us a mini lecture on Cather. He is the leading Cather scholar here at the university. She was a fascinatingly complex woman whose personal life is under much speculation. Not one to see novels as strictly autobiographical, I think this novel certainly seems to fit that bill. It is a complex and interesting description of aging, memory, and loss. Especially loss. Technically this was an excellent novel, the structure fractured just like the memories of the characters in the book. Margaritas were had by all. Fun evening.

Thanks for reading!