Incongruous

A trellis of verdant roses
creeps slowly
up the knobby ridges of my spine
Clinging fast to empty spaces
where the heart’s grandeur, like brilliant stars, would shine
Every night I traverse this Rorschach devastation
To die of grief in the light of day
Leaving fodder for the wild roses
plucked at will by all who pass this way

*One of my favorite poets is Robert Frost, and to this day I still love to recite his Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening poem every time we get the first snow of the winter. I was reading his Desert Places poem and was inspired to write something similar to his style of poetry (even though I actually dislike rhyming poems if they’re written by anyone other than Robert Frost.) I drew on my own experiences for this poem, as I’m sure Robert drew on his for his poems.

Updates and Check-ins

I haven’t checked in in a while and I’ve missed you. I’ve had multiple people reach out to me and ask how I am doing since I have been very touch and go with my online presence lately and I can’t begin to tell you how much that means to me. 

There are so many things I miss now that the pandemic has robbed me of them. Little, odd things, like the Northwest Sound Men’s choir who rented out space at the place I work to be able to gather and rehearse every Wednesday evening. I miss shutting down my office at the end of the work day and hearing them practice their songs in perfect and jovial harmony down the hall. I miss putting together my powerpoint presentations for people who would pass by and stop for a few minutes, attention snagged, to view them. Something about knowing that people are going to be present to appreciate your work makes it so fulfilling. 

I could go on and on, and so could you because we have all lost something. There are days that are incredibly rough still, and others where I feel that I have made so much progress and growth as a person. Recently, I had to have a tough conversation with someone where I had to lay down my boundaries. Always such a pleasant conversation, sigh. But I resolved to myself to be fully present and not give an inch even in the inevitable face of their hurt feelings/pride. It’s always that much more tough when the offending party encroaches on your boundaries and into your personal space from a place of overeagerness and wanting to insert themselves into spaces in your life that you never asked them to. Giving advice that was never sought after, sharing too much personal information out of nowhere, unburdening themselves to you without asking if you’re even okay with it. Finally I had to tell them they were making me uncomfortable. I wrestled with all of the feelings that came along with the whole scenario, but the relief in my soul was absolutely worth it in the end. The art of saying no to people, not maliciously, but out of self care, is a powerful tool in our arsenal. Sometimes it takes years of courage to learn how to wield it properly. 

There are moments that I cherish that are made even brighter in the face of all the tragedies that keep unfolding on the world stage. One of my best friends at work sent me and our other best friend (yep, at work) a Charlie’s Angels mug as a celebration of our friendship. That made our day. It’s gestures like these that keep me going when I just want to lay down and give up sometimes. 

Not all has been difficult and I would be remiss if I weren’t going to touch on the parts that remain shiny, faceted gems in the caverns of my mind. Before the pandemic hit us in full force, the start of this year brought with it unexpected adventures and little surprises that were cool to experience. The University of Washington had found my blog and contacted me to see if they could interview me about it. I had agreed, of course, and had a lovely interview at a coffee shop on a rainy, February evening. I had also auditioned for and won a part in a show that I flew out to California to film. (Don’t ask what show, I will never reveal it 😉) I was also scheduled to go on a vacation to Scotland in May, but that’s when all the borders had shut down and I was never able to go. But sometimes, just remembering the track record of neat things I was on the path of experiencing this year helps me to get through the parts that are lonely and remind me of how fragile we are. 

Anyway, with all of that being said, I’m going to have to wind down and head out for my massage but I can’t help but be wildly curious to know what things have you unexpectedly missed during this pandemic that you never thought you might miss? What has been helping you to stay sane and grounded when it seems that all else keeps failing?

2 out of the 3 “Charlie’s Angels” cheesing with our mugs (there’s a pun in there and it wasn’t even intentional.)

Pretending at Living

Is this who we are, then,
choreographed echoes of moments
long since faded,
like the photographs in the stack of
albums hidden in the bottom drawer
of the china cupboard,
where we still remembered how to smile
in the way only a child can.
Before disappointment came and
leached the glittering hues of innocence
from the years wrought with failing
and flying, and the terrible sepia
that stole in with the loss of childhood.
A chorus of repetition greets the day,
where mimicry is mistaken for flattery
and empty words fall like spent
bullet casings. I string them together
and loop them around my neck,
try to remember how it felt to embrace
a kaleidoscope of living color.

Leaving Eden

Silence descends heavily in the wake of
your retreating footsteps,
desolate,
cruel in its unrelenting neutrality.
My thoughts are a startled murmuration
of starlings
with desperately flapping wings
resounding mournfully into the middle distance.
They settle delicately on my shoulders,
unable to bear the weight of our
existence.
We were the beginnings
of a dream,
a building crescendo,
the first strokes of a masterpiece
that fate or folly deemed never know
the fulfillment of completion.
A bitter wind sends its piercing cry
through the spaces of my ribcage.
Cold as a January frost.

Thank You Tim

I’ve been thinking about this post from the moment Tim nominated me on his blog. It was such a beautiful thing of him to do because I’ve unintentionally been so absent from the blogosphere that I thought for sure everyone forgot about me. But this was a post in the back of my mind that was like a little beacon of light consistently calling me to return. I don’t usually participate in blog awards on my blog because I applaud everyone who is brave enough to take up the pen and write down their most intimate thoughts to share with passersby, but the questions Tim asked intrigue me and I find I am curious to answer them. So without further ado, let’s dive in.

  • What is your favorite Star Trek episode? All spin offs, generations and films count.

I feel like the following will be an admission of guilt, but it’s the truth so there’s no getting around it. I’ve never watched Star Trek. Not even a single episode. But in my defense, we didn’t grow up with a TV so you can usually catch me reading something..

  • What line from a song makes you say, “I wish I had written that!”, every time you hear it?

To be honest, it’s not a song that comes to mind, but rather, two of my most favorite poets that I happen to know here on WordPress. Rachel and April bring me to tears with their poetry and each time I have to sit back and dream of what it would be like if the enchantment they weave flowed from my pen instead of theirs. Sigh. ErroneousChoices is another WordPress siren whose words ensnared me forever into their depths. 

Oscar Wilde is another favorite of mine. I wish I said a lot of whatever he said first. 

  • If words could only be written a finite number of times, would you write them not knowing if it they could be written again?

Yes. I would. Words deserve to be given life, whether shouted from the rooftops, or whispered in the dark of night. Perhaps the written word would be all the more eloquent if they could never be penned again. 

  • If you could walk a mile in someone else’s shoes, who’s shoes and why? (any person, any time, any reason)

This one is so difficult to answer because there are so many many people I would love to walk with for a while if I could. But if I were forced to choose, I would choose to walk in the shoes of one of the men on the road to Emmaus.

  • If you find yourself standing at the intersection of ‘Right’ and ‘Legal’, which path would you choose?

Right. By the grace of God. 

  • Dogs… or cats?

Cats. Without question. If you argue with me on this you are wrong. So sit there in your wrongness and be wrong. 

  • Is is okay to benefit from knowledge, technology or skills that were gained by morally questionable means?

The jury is out on this one. I mean, advances in medicine could not be accomplished without men and women practicing on cadavers or people who were close to death, and in those times, that was very questionable indeed. 

  • How much better, or worse, is your singing voice than you believe it is?

This is timely 🙂 I was belting along to a country song this morning at the tennis academy and a stranger told me she really liked my voice. I often get complimented on my singing voice but I don’t actually have the talent for it. So my answer is it is worse, and people’s answer is it is better. 

  • Where do you think all the lost socks went?

They return as tupperware lids. But really, I have absolutely no idea where they go. It frustrates me to pieces.

  • “I think, therefore, I am”. I feel, therefor, I _______?

Can enjoy carnal pleasures… yep, my mind went there. Not sorry. 

  • You have a magic wand, you waved it. What happened?

World order was restored. Coronavirus vanished forever. The stock markets skyrocketed. All the racial injustice stopped, utopia commences…

I know the rules list a few things that I am supposed to do and I’m also supposed to nominate others who I feel are amazing. But to be honest, you are all amazing. So I nominate everyone who comes across this post. Feel free to answer the above questions in the comments section if you are so inclined. 

BE91D0E2-F03D-4229-B53D-6455927F49DC

 

My Love Is Like The Fragrant Myrrh

My love appeared to me in the hour
before sunset,
in the dusky hour heavy with the
weight of unspilled secrets. Tell me,
my love,
where do you gaily frolic in the hours
you are apart from me? ‘I toil ‘neath
the scorching sun,
weaving love’s incessant yearning like
the beams of bridges to find my way
to you.’
My heart is made of sandalwood, I trail
myrrh and fragrant spices
with abandon.

You are a city I cannot breach

You are a city built of shadowed corners
and mysterious alleys
I long to explore them with my fingers and my tongue
Trace the fine veins in your marble walls and wrap myself in your tapestries
I look at you and I see a dark and sweltering night
pregnant with heat and a full moon
and all the little things I want to reveal
in hushed whispers and languid caresses
But you keep your secrets close
and your walls maintained
with the sharp arrows of your archers
that are careless sometimes
with where they choose their target
And I wonder
if you are even aware

Uncertain

Is there anything

that is inherently

beautiful

all by itself?

Or do all the

beautiful

things

wrap themselves

in

thorns

to guard

from being crushed

by overzealous ardor?

Photo by *andokadesbois on We Heart It