Monthly Archives: April 2013

Thirty Days Hath September

…..April, June, and November.  Except in 2013 when Mother Nature decided to skip the month of April altogether and put a super long extension on to the end of March instead.  By my calculations it is now March 61st.  We had a lovely little blizzard on Monday.  I have a funny feeling March may continue to hold on for another couple of weeks.  I don’t know what month it’s going to be next.  Hope we don’t jump straight into October.

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This is the scene that greeted us from our kitchen window on Monday morning.  Where has all the green grass gone?  Ah well, no point in obsessing about the weather, right?  Might as well make a pretty picture and carry on.

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My Inner Emily

Emily dickinson
Emily dickinson (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Daily Prompt:  Unleash Your Inner Dickinson.  National Poetry Writing Month is nearly at an end. To celebrate it, try your hand at some verse.

Huh.  I thought I just did that.  And how come I didn’t know it was national poetry writing month?  Do you suppose I wasn’t informed on purpose?

No matter, another poem probably won’t kill us.  Well, me, anyway.  I don’t know about you.  I just hope poor Emily doesn’t roll over in her grave.  Or come back to haunt me.  Because I am about to update one of her poems.

A Day! Help! Help! Another Day!

Emily Dickinson
Emily Dickinson (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

by Emily Dickinson

A Day! Help! Help! Another Day!

Your prayers, oh Passer by!

From such a common ball as this

Might date a Victory!

From marshallings as simple

The flags of nations swang.

Steady—my soul: What issues

Upon thine arrow hang!

A Prompt!  Help! Help! Another Prompt!

by grandmalin

A prompt! OMG, another prompt!

Give me a break you guys.

Such a seemingly simple request

Might cause INSANITY!

You prompt and prompt and never stop

The stress is making me mad.

Hold on, my soul:  No worries

Just write something really bad.

The only thing I like better about Emily’s poem compared to mine is the use of the word “swang”.  That is a truly awesome word.

And this post, my friends, should prove once and for all that poetry writing and appreciation is really not my strong point.

elders
elders (Photo credit: sbpoet)

Broken

Broken chair
Broken chair (Photo credit: Martin Bartosch)

See these beat-up pieces, this broken-down chair?

Bedraggled, battered, neglected, bare.

Like me it is wasted,  the worse for wear,

Hurt and defeated,  filled with despair.

We are worn out, broken, beyond repair.

 

 

 

 

The Trifecta Challenge this week is 33 words about anything you want.  Your piece must include at least one
hyphenated compound modifier.

Now see freaked-out me completing a first draft which ended up being exactly 33 words.  So it’s as is, with very little editing.  Why mess with a happy accident?  Next time I will try to be more cheery.

trifecta button

Something in the Air

Woman sneezing
Woman sneezing (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I have good news and bad news.  The good news is:

1.  There’s green grass here.  Really!  I saw some.

2.  The snow has all but disappeared where I live.  All that’s left is what remains of our backyard snow mountain.  And it’s looking pretty pathetic.

3.  Today it rained!  You might even say poured!  For roughly  45 seconds.  Hey, it’s a start.

4.  The wind picked up and blew stuff everywhere.  Sorry,  I can’t remember why I think that’s good news.

5. I now have two days off in a row.  Be still my heart.

Spring-ing
Spring-ing (Photo credit: mountain_doo2)

 

 

The bad news is:

1.  My eyes are itchy and weepy.

2.  My sinuses are giving me grief and we will soon be out of kleenex if this keeps up.

3.  I am trying to sneeze my face off.

4.  My throat feels all scratchy.

5.  Snow mold is brutal.

It seems like such a shame to have to close all the windows when the weather is finally getting nice.  I go through this to some degree every spring.  I look a mess for several days and then suddenly, as fast as it comes, it goes.

Allergic rhinitis – harbinger of spring.  I would prefer birds, actually.  But whatever heralds spring this year is fine with me – I’ll take it and be glad.

 

 

April Friday

In my mind, April is my brothers month, just like May is mine, and June and November belong to  my sisters.  He was born on the 19th, a Good Friday in 1946.  It’s been half a year already since he was ‘stolen’ from us, no longer a child of course, but still a child of the earth and the universe and lost to us much too soon.

So here’s a rather melancholy tune for our last April Friday.  Poetry set to music.  I guess I’m still in my saudade mood.  Bring on the rain.

A fairy offering wishes, illustration by John ...
A fairy offering wishes, illustration by John Bauer to Alfred Smedberg’s The seven wishes (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Stolen Child

(Words by W.B.Yeats-Music by Loreena McKennitt)

Where dips the rocky highland
Of Sleuth Wood in the lake
There lies a leafy island
Where flapping herons wake
The drowsy water-rats
There we’ve hid our faery vats
Full of berries
And of reddest stolen cherries

Come away, O human child
To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand
For the world’s more full of weeping
Than you can understand.

 

Where the wave of moonlight glosses
The dim grey sands with light
By far off furthest Rosses
We foot it all the night
Weaving olden dances
Mingling hands and mingling glances
Till the moon has taken flight
To and fro we leap
And chase the frothy bubbles
Whilst the world is full of troubles
And is anxious in its sleep.

Dream Fairy
Dream Fairy (Photo credit: Alexandria LaNier)

Come away, O human child
To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand
For the world’s more full of weeping
Than you can understand.

 

 

 

Where the wandering water gushes
From the hills above Glen-Car
In pools among the rushes
That scarce could bathe a star
We seek for slumbering trout
And whispering in their ears
Give them unquiet dreams
Leaning softly out
From ferns that drop their tears
Over the young streams

The Visit (Loreena McKennitt album)
The Visit (Loreena McKennitt album) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Come away, O human child
To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand
For the world’s more full of weeping
Than you can understand.

 

 

 

 

Away with us he’s going
The solemn-eyed
He’ll hear no more the lowing
Of the calves on the warm hillside
Or the kettle on the hob
Sing peace into his breast
Or see the brown mice bob
Round and round the oatmeal chest.

For he comes, the human child
To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand
For the world’s more full of weeping
Than you can understand.

The Storyteller Review

the storyteller

Sage Singer befriends an old man who’s particularly beloved in her community. Josef Weber is everyone’s favorite retired teacher and Little League coach. They strike up a friendship at the bakery where Sage works. One day he asks Sage for a favor: to kill him. Shocked, Sage refuses…and then he confesses his darkest secret – he deserves to die, because he was a Nazi SS guard. Complicating the matter? Sage’s grandmother is a Holocaust survivor.

What do you do when evil lives next door? Can someone who’s committed a truly heinous act ever atone for it with subsequent good behavior? Should you offer forgiveness to someone if you aren’t the party who was wronged? And most of all – if Sage even considers his request – is it murder, or justice?  (Goodreads)

This is no quick and easy read – it’s a complex and compelling one about good and evil and everything in between.  There are stories within the story that are horrifying, sickening, and unbearably sad, and yet I became immersed in every one of them.  There is guilt, grief, despair, hope, mindless cruelty, emotional scars, remorse and the lack of it.  The main story is told from several points of view, with a vampire tale woven in just to keep you on your toes.  Sounds confusing, but ultimately it’s not.  It’s gripping and grim, and still remarkable.

Normally I read a book in a few days, but this one took much longer to digest and absorb. It starts off slowly, then nails you to your chair, and finally ends with a twist.  If that didn’t hook you, perhaps these quotes will.

“Inside each of us is a monster; inside each of us is a saint. The real question is which one we nurture the most, which one will smite the other.” 

“I don’t believe in God. But sitting there, in a room full of those who feel otherwise, I realize that I do believe in people. In their strength to help each other, and to thrive in spite of the odds, I believe that the extraordinary trumps the ordinary, any day. I believe that having something to hope for — even if it’s just a better tomorrow — is the most powerful drug on this planet.” 

Forgiving isn’t something you do for someone else. It’s something you do for yourself. It’s saying, ‘You’re not important enough to have a stranglehold on me.’ It’s saying, ‘You don’t get to trap me in the past. I am worthy of a future.” 

Jodi Picoult, The Storyteller

Saudade Happy Sad

It’s another lovely Prompt for the Promptless from Rarasaur, and another lovely word for which there is no exact translation into English.

Saudade is a Portuguese word that describes a deep emotional state of nostalgic longing for an absent something/someone that one loves. Moreover, it often carries a repressed knowledge that the object of longing will never return.

Saudade was once described as “the love that remains” after someone is gone. Saudade is the recollection of feelings, experiences, places or events that once brought excitement, pleasure, well-being, which now triggers the senses and makes one live again. It can be described as an emptiness, like someone (e.g., one’s children, parents, sibling, grandparents, friends, pets) or something (e.g., places, things one used to do in childhood, or other activities performed in the past) that should be there in a particular moment is missing, and the individual feels this absence. It brings sad and happy feelings all together, sadness for missing and happiness for having experienced the feeling.

Above text and lots more information at : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saudade

visiting aunt may 001

This fuzzy picture to me represents a saudade feeling or moment, because it elicits memories and emotions which are both happy and sad.

Let’s get the sad parts over with first.

1.  Mom and Dad have been gone for almost five years. They aren’t coming back, except in my head.  I miss them.

2.  I miss wearing pink pants.  Come on, you have to admit that pink pants and missing wearing them are both incredibly sad things.

3.  This was my Aunt May’s house.  She’s gone too.  And for all I know, so is her house.  Perhaps the world misses her decorating skills.

4.  I miss having dark brown hair.  But my old face and aging skin doesn’t.

And now for the happy stuff.

1.  I was going to crop off those crooked pictures at the top of this shot, but decided not to.  There’s a weird kind of symmetry going on here – three pictures, three pillows, three people.  One crazy couch from the eighties.  A happy little moment in time.

2.  I remember mom was always smiling and laughing.   Unless she was sleeping.  Although it’s possible she smiled and laughed in her sleep too.

3.  My dad was a handsome man his whole life.  He often put on a serious face for photographs.  But he was rarely serious.

4. There was a whole period of my life when my kids were growing up that flew by in the blink of an eye.  I don’t remember being unhappy, so I guess I wasn’t.

I don’t long to go back in time, although I’m glad to remember the happy times.  I don’t think remembering should make a person sad.  A little nostalgia is fine, and knowing what your journey was like to get to this point is great knowledge to have.  But it’s today that’s important.  The here and the now and the joy of this exact moment.  Being exactly who we are.  Making happy memories with the people we love.  The love we share now will be the love that remains tomorrow.

Life is short – I don’t want to waste a minute of it on emptiness and longing.