Thursday, December 27, 2012

Another Instance of Run-On Love

I can't manage to write, on time, 5 lines of verse for Limerick-Off Monday, 17 syllables for Sensational Haiku Wednesday, 33 words for Trifecta, 1 minute's worth of writing for One-Minute Writer, anything at all for Poets & Writers, or any of the other 38 challenge/prompt sites bookmarked in my browser*.


I can write a 46 word, run-on sentence describing my surprise at enjoying the nail salon trip on Christmas Eve...

Well, I would "commit" to writing as a New Year's resolution, but I think I've already "committed" close to a dozen times in recent months, and we all see how well that has worked out for me!

*I just happen to have these five open at the moment.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

What a Christmas!

Did you say you were interested in a play-by-play of my holiday? That's great, 'cause here it is!

Yesterday, my sister and I went to the nail salon, with my almost-4-yr old, courtesy of my husband. He decided that the best gift he could give me was another excuse to spend quality time with my sister.  It was a surprise for both of us.  And it was actually kind of fun--I had my doubts since I don't do the whole nail salon thing, a couple swipes of whichever random polish I have in the house once or twice a year is the extent of my nail-pampering regimen.  It was Emma's first time also, and while she definitely proved that she should've had a nap prior to an afternoon at the salon, I didn't have a meltdown.

We managed to top the great afternoon with an awesome family dinner. Gina, her husband and their four kids all came over, as well as my dad and one of Jason's brothers.  Ham, chicken, homemade macaroni salad, baked reds and a stuffed mushroom-french bread hybrid comprised the menu, and it was super yummy. And everyone had a great time. And no one fought. And no one pissed off the neighbors. And we sent a plate home for my mom, since she was stuck working. Even the kids managed to get along for the most part.  I still have a mound of dishes to wash but they'll hold another hour*.

We attempted to finish the night off by driving out to look at Christmas lights in one of the show-offy neighborhoods, but the kids fell asleep so we just came home and watched Christmas movies and just hung out for a bit.

I went to sleep last night worrying that something had to go wrong today, since yesterday was the best Christmas Eve I can remember. And I've had 31 of them so far.

But today was just as great a day.  Aside from my militant awesome husband waking us all up at six because he was just so excited for the kids to open their gifts, I have no complaints.  We spent the morning at my sister's eating Eggs Benedict and opening gifts and hanging out; both of my parents and my previously mentioned brother-in-law were there.  We followed that up by driving to various other relatives to drop off the above Christmas card of my incredibly adorable kidlets. And we spent the afternoon watching Christmas movies.  

It's a quarter past ten and nothing tragic or even remotely lame has happened. Knock on wood - Check. 

Merry Christmas :)

*Or another day.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Another End of the World Poem

There has been a ton of hype this week regarding the end of the world. There are dedicated websites detailing why today was the day-the Mayan calendar, planetary alignments, misc. religious prophecies, etc.  I didn't buy into any of it, but I had considered posting REM & Europe music videos.  I also thought about getting up at 3 am and mocking all the doomsdayers on Facebook, but sleep was far more important last night.

Of course, the world hasn't ended yet and it's December 21st everywhere by now. I'm sure the folks at knew this would be the case since they posted a poem today, a rather fitting one, I might add. Today's Poem-A-Day is Robert Frost's Fire and Ice

Some say the world will end in fire, 
Some say in ice. 
From what I've tasted of desire 
I hold with those who favor fire. 
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate 
To know that for destruction ice 
Is also great 
And would suffice.

(I like this widget so much I think I may add the daily one to my main page.)

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

"Family" Haiku

This week's theme for Sensational Haiku Wednesday is "family". I'm sure my haiku aren't exactly what Jenn had in mind, but I was a bit bored and December 21st has been a hot topic at home, at work and on Syfy.

I find myself a little amusing, and hope you do as well.

Forgotten during
the zombie apocalypse
Move on, form new bonds.


One percent survive:
dreams of repopulating
dance in Jason's head.


What Mayans predict
Fools may believe; my babies
and I sit back, laugh.

Join the fun!


Monday, December 10, 2012


I have numerous posts waiting to be written out. I have rough draft entries for a couple of the challenges I like to follow and sometimes take part in; as well as several new challenges I'd like to start participating in; all the deadlines for my entries have passed, so they will continue to sit in my WIPs folder.  Tonight, I mentally drafted a post about how I like to instigate drama, and just sat down to type it out for you.  But, for now, for tonight at least, that post has been back-burnered.

Every time I log in to blogger, (a couple times a day 'cause I like to check my non-existent stats) I try to catch up on new posts in my reading list. Tonight, there was a post by a woman who is days away from delivering her second child. The post started out as a touching reflection on her first child's growing acceptance of his role as a big brother. Reading that brought a bit of dampness to my eyes. Then her post linked to a man's blog about being his wife's caregiver, as she is slowly succumbing to cancer. A brief look at his blog increased the moisture in my eyes, but I managed to move on without actually shedding a tear.  She finished off her post by offering to pray for anyone that had prayer requests; she has a list of people she will pray for while delivering her new baby.  She is an American Muslim, and according to her blog, there are people in her faith who believe that the prayers sent up by a woman delivering a child are especially important.  For a moment, I considered emailing her and asking for her prayer. And suddenly the floodgates opened.

It could be my own wavering faith in God. It could be my wavering faith in miracles. In invisible cures.  It could be my own denial--we need modern medicine to force the cancer into remission, if I ask for anything more than a general prayer am I admitting to myself, and to whomever, that maybe we do need more than medicine to save my sister?  That scares me. Or maybe it was that this woman truly believes in the miracle of life, and believes that her prayers may make a difference. I know any and all prayers can make a difference. But reading her words made me believe that her prayers truly would make a difference. That immense hope was immediately crushed by the fear that her prayers won't work.

Maybe all of these things were at work in that small instant when I thought about asking to her to add me to her prayer list.  Whatever the reason, I was certainly not expecting the enormous wave of emotions, or the quiet tears, when I innocently opened my dashboard. 

Now that I've pretty much recovered for the moment, I'm going to bed. I'll be back later this week with my instigator post. 

Goodnight :)

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Reaction Haiku

Fear, frustration, heartache. But...
Never acceptance.

She's making new friends,
Fending off her depression;
For me: jealousy.

Countless feelings tucked away,
My heart, a black hole.

But wait! The Mayo?
Experimental treatment?
Sparking a glimmer.

This week's theme for Sensational Haiku Wednesday is "Reaction".

The range of reactions I have felt, even as an outsider, surprises me at times. I can't imagine what my sister is feeling; I think she, too, internalizes. But, I'm sure if I were to take what I feel and amplify it quite a bit, I'd probably only have a small fraction of an idea. 

If Gina is accepted into the Mayo Clinic's treatment program, I will post more details on it. I'll probably still blog about it if she isn't accepted, but with fewer details and more whines.

Join the fun!

PS--I quadruple checked my syllable count, but if I'm still off please let me know!!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Crazy Quilt Journal Project 2013

One of the many crafts I daydream of wasting spending all my time on is quilting. I have never actually pieced a traditional quilt block, although I have hundreds of patterns and numerous books for when I am finally ready to tackle one (finally ready=purchase a new sewing machine). I have, however, made several crazy quilt blocks and have even crazy quilted a small purse. And I have mass amounts of fabric so that I can continue to crazy quilt whenever I get the chance.

And that's the problem. "Whenever I get the chance". Since I hand-piece & embellish the CQ seams, I don't have the no-sewing-machine excuse. Instead I use the "I'm too busy" excuse, even though the majority of my free time is spent reading blogs and cyber-stalkinglooking up old friends on Facebook. Which is bogus. So I am going to participate in a challenge that will force me to be creative!

The Crazy Quilt Journal Project-2013 challenges participants to complete one 6x6 block per month. The end goal of the CQJP is to bring more awareness to Crazy Quilting-which is great. The side effect, me not being able to always be lazy, is also great!

If you happen to be interested in joining me in this challenge, the details and registration page, which closes December 12th, can be found here:

Friday, November 16, 2012

Treat Limerick

I was awake at midnight last weekend when MadKane posted her new Limerick-Off prompt. I thought I was going to be the first one to post my limerick but I was only able to write the first four lines that night and ended up posting it Sunday afternoon.  I'm still not completely satisfied with the last line-my first two tries were too long syllable-wise; this one has a slightly better rhythm and syllable count, but still isn't my favorite way to end it. 

This week's first line is:

A fellow would frequently treat


A woman would frequently treat

Luckily, we're allowed to modify the first line just a bit, as I subbed in "lady" for "woman":

A lady would frequently treat
Her man to a rub of the feet.
But returning the favor,
he didn’t quite savor,
To change his mind would be quite a feat.

I think I should've used "take" instead of "be" but I already submitted it to MadKane's site on Sunday so I'll keep it the same here.

I actually meant to write this up on Sunday but forgot. You still have a day or so to join in the fun, and a new limerick-off starts on Sunday.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Life is Fine

While digging through one of several still-unpacked boxes looking for a picture, I came across this poem by Langston Hughes. My first year of college, 1200 miles from home, I had taped this to my dorm room wall, but haven't really thought about it in the last ten years or so.

I never found the picture I was looking for tonight, but I'm glad I stumbled across this poem. I thought I'd share the poem here, not for inspiration or anything really, but just because I like it and don't want to wait another decade before finding/remembering it.

I went down to the river,
I set down on the bank.
I tried to think but couldn't,
So I jumped in and sank

I came up once and hollered!
I came up twice and cried!
If that water hadn't a-been so cold
I might've sunk and died.

     But it was     Cold in that water!     It was cold!

I took the elevator
Sixteen floors above the ground.
I thought about my baby
And thought I would jump down.

I stood there and I hollered!
I stood there and I cried!
If it hadn't a-been so high
I might've jumped and died.

     But it was     High up there!     It was high!

So since I'm still here livin',
I guess I will live on.
I could've died for love--
But for livin' I was born

Though you may hear me holler,
And you may see me cry--
I'll be dogged, sweet baby,
If you gonna see me die.

     Life is fine!     Fine as wine!     Life is fine!


Good night :)

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Fake Funeral

I originally posted this on Blogher back in April, when I thought I might be active enough to have two blogs. It didn't take more than a post or two to realize that one is enough.  I posted this the same day I posted the funeral poem here, since it reminded me of the memory:

"In 2000-01-ish, my younger-by-a-year sister got it in her head to throw herself a funeral.  At 18 years old she wanted to take part in the festivities while she was still young and alive enough to enjoy them, plus it gave us something to do on a boring Saturday.

First, we went dress shopping-she wanted to be laid to rest in somethin' fancy! We drove around to several department stores, checking out the leftover prom clearance. I think we went to three stores before finding something that was both pretty and affordable. We also had to buy a black and purple velvet top hat-I can't really remember the justification behind the hat now, but it was necessary for the ceremony to be perfect. 

Then we had to get a copy of "Painted Black" --the theme song of choice for our impromptu funeral--and of course we needed flowers! My grandma was not very pleased when we cut a few choice stems from her garden, she didn't quite get the whole "fake funeral" thing.

After my sister was dressed in her gown and hat, she stretched out on the couch while the Rolling Stones played in the background and we stood around staring at her clutching her bouquet of peach roses.  My mom took pictures to commemorate the funeral, and I think between the escaping giggles (we all HAD to be straight faced, this was a serious funeral and we wouldn't laugh if it were the real thing would we??) my mom may have had a bit of moisture in her eyes.

Even if it is a bit on the morbid side, it still cracks us up to talk about it. I would say it is one of my favorite memories--although I say that about most of the good ones!"

I'm not sure right now if this memory is still a favorite. In fact, because of the "what-ifs" I almost wish I could forget it completely.  But at the same time I want to remember things like this, because of the what-ifs. 

I am likely going to post random tidbits related to my sister, mainly for my own memory-keeping but also so everyone else can get to know her a bit.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

It's gonna get whiny 'round here...

Remember when I whined and cried for a month over my moving predicament? Yea, well, that was nothing. 

This is going to be a short post. I have written half a dozen posts and none of them seem right. I feel like I have another elephant in the room, so this post is to clear the air and in the weeks and months to follow I'll elaborate, and whine and cry and yell and rage and if you choose to stick around great. If not, I'm sorry.

My sister has Small Cell Lung Cancer.

She doesn't smoke, not that it matters in my opinion, but that's another post.

She has four small children, one of whom is battling her own neuro-degenerative disorder.

She found out two weeks ago that it has spread from one lung to the other, in spite of the two rounds of chemo and month of near-daily radiation. It is no longer classified as non-aggressive; it is now classified as moderate-aggressive.

I am so angry and sad and scared and everything in between. I don't know what to do with my thoughts or feelings--I feel like I can't talk to anyone-I'm already over the "have faith" garbage that I once spewed myself to people in similar situations. I can hardly type out these few sentences without tearing up, but I am hoping I can use this blog to get my feelings out and keep them from spilling over into my QT with my sister.

I'm going to try and keep every single post from being about this, and I'm going to try and write more frequently. But for now this is all I have. Good night.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Random Forgetfulness

For some reason, the "tab" key takes you directly from the title box to the "publish" button now. The older version of Blogger went from the title box to compose section. Which makes sense, why would someone type just the title then hit publish?! Besides me, tonight, since I hit tab then the right combo of keystrokes to equal enter, thus publishing an empty post.


Today I made cookies. I want to enter a contest so I am tweaking a chocolate & coconut recipe.  I accidentally forgot a cup of flour. Which should've meant two dozen cookies were headed straight to the trash can, right? Nope. I decided to bake them, just in case I didn't really forget the flour, and they came out with a brownie-like texture and my husband loves them. I have another, correct, batch chilling in the fridge, but I am definitely going to add my screw-up to my recipe box.

I know that the mind works in mysterious ways. Well, at least mine does. But I am always surprised when something strange happens to me. I was finishing up an hour and a half round of grocery shopping at Walmart, when out of nowhere I thought it would be hilarious if I forgot my debit card and had to go home. I laughed out loud, luckily the aisle was empty, then all of a sudden realized I didn't have my card! I used it earlier and put it in the center console instead of my pocket, so at least it was in the car and not at home. But I am sure I wouldn't have remembered until I was checking out, if it hadn't of been for that random thought. Sure, most people would remember stuff like that, or would check to be sure they had whatever they needed, but I am not most people. I let my husband keep my driver's license in his wallet because I have lost it 4 times in the last two years. So remembering or checking for my ATM card before starting a grocery trip just isn't part of my M.O.

In another example of my poor memory this weekend, I found out the hard way that I forgot to update my Facebook account with my new phone number.  I don't rely on the mobile updates to keep me updated as much as I did this past summer, so updating the phone number wasn't something I thought of right away, then I completely forgot about changing it.  Apparently someone has activated a phone with it though...I logged on yesterday afternoon to see that "I" replied to a bunch of posts saying things like "I don't know you" & "My name is Sean, quit texting me!"  At first, I thought I was hacked, obviously I'm not Sean, and I do know my sister and my friends.  After a minute or two or re-reading all the texts I realized what happened, and called the kid to apologize then updated my Facebook account. Then I had to explain to half a dozen people what happened.

(I have another kinda funny story about Facebook but rather than bore you, it can be summed up with the following bit of advice:  "Don't Facebook stalk from your cell phone if it is prone to freezing, as you are likely to start tapping in frustration and sending out a bunch of random friend requests to people you don't know". I'll leave it at that for tonight.)

Have a great week!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

What's in a name?

Once a week I get a meme in my email that I never fill out. I know, I know, I'm never going to get kissed, someone's going to die, and I'll be poor forever... One of the first questions is always a variation of "what is your nickname".  Some of my friends have really awesome or funny or fitting nicknames. Mine are: Maria, Bagel and Raquel.  My middle name is Marie but my dad has always called me "Maria", so much so that I call myself Maria weekly.  "Bagel" is my sister's favorite name for me-it kind of rhymes with Rachael. And "Raquel" is just Spanish for "Rachael". Which apparently isn't common knowledge since I had to explain to the new kid why my co-worker calls me Raquel. Oh well.

Over the years, I have collected at least a dozen email accounts. My very first account, circa 1998-9, is a weird-ish spelling of twilight eyes: my favorite time of day + my best physical feature (well besides my big ol' booty, but twilight ass isn't something I could write my grandma with).  I loved that handle so much that I have used variations of it in several of my other email accounts. 

It would probably still be my favorite user id, except for the whole Twilight saga thing.  I didn't hate the books or the movies, but I certainly hate the snickers I get after giving out my email address when I call various customer service depts.  Obviously, I am such a "twihard" I had to put my love for the series in my email account; there is no way I created my account before the books/movies came out.  Unfortunately Yahoo doesn't have a "member since ##" like pretty much every other email hosting service. So I have zero proof. And no choice but to suffer through the lame jokes.

Anyone else out there have an email that they can't get rid of but aren't always proud of?

Another name I have gotten a couple questions on is my blog name. "Angle 949" is pretty random. No, really, it is. I picked it from a list of captchas I liked enough to think they would be usable one day. (In case you're interested, three have been used-this one plus two others have shown up in WIPs (the plural of WIP seems odd to me-it seems like it should ve WsIP!!)).  And since my interests are all over the place, I figured hundreds of angles would cover it!  So far, I haven't really covered many of my interests other than writing. And I've done quite a bit of whining. But eventually I'll post other stuff, and then the name will fit a little better.

Hope you're all having a great weekend!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Limerick Feud

This week's first line for the Limerick-Off on MadKane's Humor Blog is:

"A man was involved in a feud"
"A gal was involved in a feud"

Here's my entry:

A man was involved in a feud
Over the new 'do his wife debuted.
His word choice was poor,
Now his bed's on the floor
'Til his sense of style's less skewed.

I'm not satisfied with the last line, but I've run out of revision ideas for it.  I really, really want to use "skewed" and this seems to be the best I can do with that word this afternoon.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Whiny Limerick

Soon, I won't need to start every post with something along the lines of "this summer I missed *** because I didn't have Internet". Tonight, though, I am excited to finally be able to enter MadKane's Weekly Limerick-Off after my summer hiatus.

This week's theme is whining, with the given first line choices being:

"A fellow who tended to whine"


"A woman who tended to whine"

The theme is fitting for me right now, as I feel like three-quarters of all my mental posts are whiny, which is why they are only written in my head at the moment.  Anyway, here is my entry for this week's Limerick-off.

A fellow who tended to whine
Sure his stars would never align,
He'd bitch and he'd moan,
"a dog can't catch a bone"
While buffing his Porsche to a high shine.

I'm not altogether satisfied with this entry; if I come up with something more humorous before the week is up, I'll post it as well.

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Altered Text Poetry

Several years ago, I came across Tom Phillips' A Humument, and instantly fell in love. The way he transformed a random book into a completely different piece of art is incredible. And inspiring.  I have bought several books with the intent of emulating Phillips, but an entire novel seems daunting, so I have started creating altered text ATCs*-much more manageable.  I don't make them very often, part of me almost feels like I am cheating somehow, but I really enjoy the process when I do sit down to make them.

Here are two of my favorites:

 Out of the smoke
She returned to herself
but she was altered
morning and night
by the relentless question:

Shadows kidnap her,
his one pale eye
memorizing the brief moment
The raven recognized it.

As stand-alone poems they need some work, but as miniature artsy pieces, I think they are pretty good. Sometimes, when I am having trouble focusing on what I want to write I will work on this type of thing. Like I mentioned above, I kind of feel like I am cheating when I create these; I'd love to get some other opinions on the matter, if anyone would care to chime in-even to agree that it is cheating.

*ATC=Artist Trading Card, a 2.5 x3.5 piece of art. I first found out about these when I used to participate in swaps on Swap-Bot. That's another item on my "get-back-into-eventually list"' it's a very long list!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Escape Haiku

One of the things I missed most about having unlimited access to the Internet was participating in writing challenges. I spent the summer torturing myself: each week I would sign on to various sites and read the weekly challenge, even though I knew I would not end up participating. I must say, I had some really great entries for some of them written out in my head (I'm sure you would think so too, if only I had typed them out to prove it...).

Tonight I am recommitting myself to taking part in at least one challenge a week, starting with YouKnowThatBlog's weekly haiku challenge. This week's theme for Sensational Haiku Wednesday is "Escape". Here's half of half a dozen entries:

Stuck at the in-laws-
No access to the 'net;
Books: my only escape.


Longing to escape
monotonous eight to fives..
Damn, Facebook is blocked!


Emma caught on film:
She's locked out of the kitchen,
longing to escape!

This evening's Inspiration!

Be sure to join the fun!

 Join the fun!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Hello, Stranger

I have written several dozen different posts this past summer. All of them in my head since my only Internet access prior to this weekend was at work. I can't promise that this will be an altogether coherent post since I have just so much to say and I want to say it all and keep some of it to myself and tell you all everything all at once!! Yes, I am a tad bit excited to be back at my blog!

For now I'm going to just do bullet points and later on I will write out additional posts on things I need or want to discuss further. I apologize for the run-ons and poor sentence structure, bullets just seem to call for poor grammar sometimes ;)

  • June 8 we abandoned the majority of our belongings in Florida, rented a car and spent three days driving back to Nevada. It was so much better than I expected, and regardless of the circumstances it was actually kind of fun and I want to take more road trips.

  • Immediately returned to work that Monday. Not nearly as good as I had it in FL, but it is familiar at least.

  • Bought a car, since we left ours to be sold, eventually, in FL. One week later the car was vandalized and we spent a month waiting for the insurance company to pay to fix it. That is probably the only positive to this summer being unusually dry in Northern Nevada-my daughter would not have appreciated the rain pouring through her missing window if it had rained at all.

  • Signed up for a new cell phone service and received awesome new phones-with Internet access and potential bloggy access. One week later my phone was stolen (well first it was left on my car, then a stranger picked it up and proceeded to use the Internet and make long distance calls, which were free, luckily. Yay for signing up for "unnecessary" phone insurance! That is until I found out you have to have the phone for more than one month to make a claim, and making a claim prior to that one month means you void the possibility of making a claim on the same phone after the month has passed.

  • Summer was otherwise uneventful, quite boring in fact. We stayed with my brother-in-law, his wife, and their five children. They did not have wifi, and the only computer was in their master bedroom, so I rarely ever used it.

  • September 1 we signed a lease for an awesome apartment in an awesome neighborhood. It's right at the edge of my comfort level as far as affordability goes, but its cheaper than some we looked at and it is in the part of town we wanted to live in.

Now that I have that all out of the way I can go back to writing randomness here and there and writing here and there and not feeling like I need to catch myself up completely beforehand. I missed it more than I expected to.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

A New Future, in 33 words.

This week's prompt at the Trifecta Writing Challenge is "new"; as always, we are to use the third definition in a 33-333 word response.

The third definition of new:

3: having been in a relationship or condition but a short time

Not surprisingly, at least to me, I have created a 33 word poem for your consideration:

I cannot see,
     only the dark remains;
once startled,
     cold sorrow awakens.
Selfish, empty words:
     the object of once
          pure hearts.
I resign.
Now to face
     a new future,
A life without light.

Friday, June 1, 2012

A Decision

Sometimes the best decision isn't right or wrong, it just is. This is hard for me to believe, no matter how often I have been saying it recently. It is just a decision. There, I've said it again. And yet, I still can't quite shake the feeling that maybe we are making the wrong choice. To go back to Nevada, that is. Just like when I was pushing hard to stay here in Florida, I felt that that was also the wrong decision. No matter what I do, I'm choosing poorly.

The other night, after I told my boss that we would be leaving, I had a meltdown. An uncontrollably-sobbing on my husband's shoulder type of meltdown. I usually cry silent tears, unless something dreadful has happened and then they may be a little more vocal, but, Ever. In the last ten years it has probably happened two other times. Not only because I think I look funny, but also because I like to keep the majority of my emotions well contained.

Since the thought of leaving is nearly devastating, and the thought of staying is overwhelmingly stressful, I just have to keep telling myself that it is not about right or wrong--good or evil--it is just a decision.

Monday, May 28, 2012

A Wedded Limerick

For this week's Limerick-Off Challenge over on MadKane's Humor blog, MadKane has given us the line "A fellow was planning to wed" (as always we can sub for the fem).

A fellow was planning to wed
a gal to keep him well fed.
But oops! Guess again
She only "cooks" ramen,
Each meal he now faces with dread.

A young lass was planning to wed
a boy who filled her parents with dread.
So they hatched a great plan
to be rid of the foul man:
They gave her a year at Club Med.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Trifextra-a poem hesitantly titled "Emptiness"

This weekend's Trifextra challenge at Trifecta is simply to write a poem, in 33 words, 3 lines, or 3 stanzas. I went for the 33 word option.

What now?
What if?

A mistake
to ask.

We would.
We could.

A mistake
to suggest.

She left,

The sunlight
was cold,
The memory
small, dark.

The price:
Nothing at all,


Hitting A Wall. (literally, not figuratively)

(Although figuratively it would also be true in several areas of my life.)

Unfortunately, my son also hit a wall. Quite literally:

As you can see in this crappy cell picture, J got quite the knot from running into the corner of the wall yesterday. He wasn't a fan of the ice, but somehow the 10 or so times I was able to apply it to his head, even at only five seconds each, reduced the swelling. Today he only has a nasty blue bruise.

Apparently the advice to just 'push through when you hit a wall' only applies metaphorically.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Sunburnt Limerick

I missed entering MadKane's Limerick-Off last week. I would say I just wasn't feeling the first line, but really I was just too lazy to put in the necessary effort needed to create something decent.

This week, she chose the first line just for me though! Well, she didn't actually think "Hey, I'm inspired by Rachael's post on her poor sunblock application skills, so I want to make this week about her!" (Or did she...?)

First line choices this week are:

"A gal with a very deep tan" or "A guy with a very deep tan"

She also notes that minor variations to the first line are acceptable, and this week I'm taking her up on that!

A gal longing for a deep tan,
skipping sunblock was her bright plan.
Now she's laid up for weeks,
rudely dubbed "Fire Cheeks"
Super red burns now gracing her can!

(This really happened to me when I was ~20 years old; unfortunately the nickname outlasted the burn...)

Just checking in

Over the past four days I have written and deleted three posts, not counting the additional ones I have drafted in my head. Lately, I have been lacking confidence in my opinions and ideas, even over trivial matters. For example, I started to write a book review, which I normally have no problem with, but I broke my own rule and read other reviews first. Now I don't know if my feelings about the book are valid. Maybe I was just emotional when I read it, maybe I have a poor taste in literature...These and other doubts make me hesitant to commit my review to the Internet. I also wanted to share my opinions on a couple of things that have popped up in the news. And my opinions on other things. But what if no one agrees with my opinions? Half the time, I don't even agree with my opinions!

I was also going to talk about why I deleted my last blog in its entirety, without saving copies of any of the posts. But it's a lengthy explanation just to say "I am a coward". I am going to try my best to not delete this blog, even if I abandon it for days at a time.

Thursday, May 3, 2012


Hidden in darkness
she waited,
every footfall brought panic,
but she waited.
Held her breath
dreading they would hear
the thunder
of her heartbeat.
The closet door creaked
"Kelly, quit hiding from Momma!"

This week's Trifecta Challenge is the word "Thunder". The third definition is the noun used for the sound--"the thunder of hooves" etc.

This little poem is an image that has been rattling around in my mind the last few days.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Introducing Kylie

I have previously warned you that I ramble and tend to write in run-ons. I am warning you again.

My niece Kylie, practicing her "big eyes"!

Yesterday one of my nieces celebrated her eighth birthday. I cannot believe she is that old! I wanted to write about her last night but didn't prioritize like I could have. And I have gone back and forth about how anonymous I want to remain, and introducing Kylie to you will be a large step away from anonymity, and while I don't really mind you knowing about me and my family, I haven't really told anyone besides my husband that I am blogging and it seems like I could lose that bit of security I have in keeping this blog to myself.

Anyway, back to my introduction! You may have heard about my niece already. At eight years old she has already been featured on Anderson Cooper! You see, Kylie is a bit of a medical mystery. Her working diagnosis is "Neuro-degenerative disease of unknown origin". She has seizures that aren't "normal", constant tremors, numerous things that I cannot pronounce or definitely can't spell correctly. She has been to Stanford, UCDavis, UCSF, Shriner's, and at least one other that I cannot remember. And she has been seen at the NIH.

Kylie developed normally, above average even, and showed no signs of illness until she was 3, when she developed Type 1 Diabetes, then at 4 she started having tremors and seizures. She regressed physically so fast that the doctors started warning my sister and family that she may only have months to live. She has beaten the odds but there are still no answers and she is not getting better.

Here are several links to find out more about my niece if you are so inclined:

Anderson Cooper 360 article and video
Sanjay Gupta video from AC360
Another Sanjay Gupta video from the Anderson Cooper segments
Kylie's Caring Bridge Page-most complete source of info, you may need to connect with Facebook or enter an email address (sometimes it loads automatically after sititng on the login screen for 15-20 seconds)
Kylie's official .com, it's a work-in-progress
Kylie's official Facebook page-updated most frequently

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Trifextra-an untitled 3 person POV non-poetic piece

This weekend's Trifextra Challenge is to write a scene from the point of view of at least three different people. And each POV needs to be exactly 33 words.

Here is my entry:

Shifting to her side, she gave him her back. She was tired of listening to him. She was a Lamb of God now; she knew He would make miracles happen with her money.
He heard her mumble something ludicrous about lambs and God. But she was nothing more than a sheep. She was signing her money away to strangers, money he had counted on for years.
It barely registered when the mother and son quit bickering; the minister was so caught up in processing the old woman's donation. Already, he could hear the waves lapping the beach-he couldn't wait.

I really wanted to make three poems, but I couldn't do it this weekend. Well, I probably could if I tried harder, but I like how this turned out as it is anyway.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Limerick Quest

Usually when I wake up in the middle of the night I have one or two lines of a song stuck in my head. No matter how long I am awake, or what else I try to think about, the song plays incessantly in the background of my mind. But the other night it was different. The other night I had the beat of a good limerick playing instead. So, in my half-asleep, still feverish daze, I tried to make every thought I had fit the pattern of a limerick. It was at the same time awesome-I wish I had thought to get out of bed and write-and annoying-it is much harder to go to sleep when your mind is actively working in such a way.

Unfortunately, all the extra practice I put in that night into limerick creation did not help me with this week's Limerick-Off over at MadKane's humor blog. As I have mentioned, I'm generally not ever funny on purpose. Sometimes I accidentally come up with something pretty good, sometimes my limerick efforts can even bring a small chuckle, but a lot of the time, like this week, they just aren't funny. This week's first line is: "A fellow was off on a quest" or "A woman was off on a quest". I couldn't resist the cheesy, obvious "chest" rhyme, if you don't mind I'll blame the extra lameness this week on the side effects of my antibiotics. ;)

A woman was off on a quest,
for he who the stories professed,
would dance upon strings,
and buy her nice things,
for the promise of glimpsing her chest!

I could promise that next week's entry for the limerick-off will be both funny and creative, but all I can promise is I won't be on any meds so I'll be able to try harder to avoid the obvious rhymes.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Misplaced Confidence

It's amazing how you don't realize just how awful you've been feeling until you start feeling good! My meds have lame side effects: nausea, dizziness, upset stomach, tiredness. Basically I have felt no different since starting the meds. But tonight, in that little window of time when the last dose of antibiotics was wearing off and the new dose hadn't fully kicked in, I felt amazing. Like I haven't felt in weeks!

I felt well enough this evening to actually sit and think and write for a bit. Tonight I decided to focus on the current Trifecta challege. The word count limitations are 33-333 words; I really like cutting my entry down to exactly 33 words, especially since I am still on my poetry kick.

This week's chosen word is "confidence" and the third definition is "a relation of trust or intimacy" and here is my entry:

Her voice rasped,
rattling on and on.
The younger girl waited,
She was close,
closer than ever.
Soon she would have
the old woman's confidence.
Soon a fortune would be hers.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Procrastination is not always for the best.

I procrastinate on many things in my day-to-day. It's always easier to put off what can be done later. And if it that something is optional it may be put off quite permanently. I even procrastinate on issues involving my health.

I put off going to the doctor over my fever and chills this weekend because I knew it was a virus. There is nothing that can be done for a virus; there is no point in seeking medical care. Especially when you are uninsured and funds are already tight. Even when your husband insists day after day that something is wrong. "When the Tylenol doesn't work anymore," was my response Friday night, Saturday all day, and most of Sunday.

When my fever returned Sunday evening I decided to go in, even though I didn't think it was as high as it had been and the chills had not come with it. This made me think I was getting better but I still felt really crappy and I had to work all week and the pressure from my husband had finally gotten to me.

I checked into the hospital with a 102.8° temperature (if this was my temp when I thought it wasn't so bad I wonder how high it was earlier when I was hot to the touch?!) and they ran some tests and suspected the flu. Which required a nose swab--a 4" long stick that was put in both sides of my nose way up into my sinuses. Ouch-I told her that next to childbirth that may have been the worst thing I had ever experienced!

Oh, one of my other symptoms that I have had for a couple weeks, therefore obviously unrelated, is a cramp/pain in my left side, which fluctuated from barely painful to fully immobilizing at times. Dr. Google suggested indigestion and gas pills would occasionally relieve the more severe pain. More proof that this was unrelated to my current virus. I did mention it to the doctor, as well as the fact that I had had three bladder infections in the last month, the first I self-treated with amoxycillin, the other two I caught early enough to flush out with cranberry juice (as I had been advised to attempt numerous times in the past since I get at least one if not several a year).

Turns out I have a severe UTI. I have no symptoms because it's not in my bladder, it's in my kidney but luckily the blood tests showed it has not progressed into the dangerous kind of kidney infection. It is severe enough though that they had to give me a shot of antibiotics as well as a 7-day script of pills.

The nurse asked me which side I wanted my shot. I told her I am right-handed, so the left side please. To which she replied: "No dear, it goes in the cheek-not the arm, and from what I've heard hurts like hell". Wow. She was not kidding. I mentally took back my earlier statement about the nasal swab being second only to childbirth. My ass hurt like hell!! And true to her word, it hurt all day today as well.

So the point of all this is to say not to procrastinate where your health is concerned!!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

I survived...Barely.

That shouldn't be in past tense, but I'm wiped out so the day is pretty much over for me--it's six and I'm officially old now so it's okay to call it a day, right? Anyway, today is the big day. 30. It sounds so weird. Up 'til yesterday I could still call myself a kid and now I probably can't.

I wish I could say I was spending my non-blogging time the last couple days doing something productive but aside from some blog reading, browsing Facebook and finishing the book I was reading, I haven't done crap! I have a valid excuse (still just an excuse though). For the last three days I have ended up with a high fever, chills and a headache. Then once the Tylenol kicks in I feel like I am dying from the heat. I am sure I have some form of the nasty throat virus my husband just got over, but I have had no pain or issues at all with my throat. Very weird. Very annoying.

Since I feel crappy we stayed around home all day today. My cousin and his family brought over pizza and cake, after hanging out and bs'ing a while they had to leave, and my daughter went into hysterics! It was hysterically funny and awful and sad all at the same time..She ran up to their son, who is 7 I believe, and clutched his waist, shrieking and crying. And we let it go on for at least two minutes. Because we are all mean adults. She probably needed a nap, but she also loves her little cousin; I'm not sure he's always as thrilled to have a three year old trailing him when we're all together though.

I also received some exciting news as far as my writing goes, but I heard it third party so I'll wait until it is confirmed to commit it to the internet!

Tomorrow we are attempting the beach again, I will be wearing at least a t-shirt and maybe full pants. Since obviously putting sunblock on often enough isn't a strong point of mine. Plus I'm still suffering from last weekend's sunburn. And after that I am picking up a case of books to distribute for World Book Night, I'm very excited about that.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


I didn't have a post last night, I was working on my Trifecta entry. The term this week is "observe", using the third definition which is to celebrate or solemnize an occasion (that's obviously a paraphrase, you can find the actual definition on Trifecta's page).

I'm feeling a bit narcissistic and instead of creating a fictitious poem or short story I'm writing about my upcoming birthday. Last night I made quite a few starts but they all sounded depressing or depressing, none of them seemed to fit a poem-not without cheesy rhymes (who hasn't seen some variation of the dirty/flirty/thirty combo on a "For Her" birthday card before?). Tonight I started over and began with a lame paragraph that fit the requirements but certainly didn't please me, then out of nowhere this came to me:

The edge of thirty approaches,
How crazy anxious
I am becoming,
Random failed feats are finding me.
This day I no longer want to observe
Yells: "only a few short days left to go."

It's still a bit depressing, maybe a tad cheesy, but trust me-it is way better than what I could've posted! I don't know why I didn't think of spelling thirty vertically sooner, it made a huge difference in my thinking process tonight.

Thanks for reading :)

Annoyed, in haiku

After last week's embarrassing screw-up, where I miscounted my syllables several dozen times, I made sure to count these a dozen and one times!

This week's prompt for Sensational Haiku Wednesday at You Know That Blog is "Annoyance".

Here are three things that have recently or are currently annoying me:

Green lights equal go;
If the road is clear, don't drive
under the limit!

There's one little hair
Refusing to stay put; it's
Always in my eyes.

For lack of sunblock
I dealt with nasty blisters
Now it's time to itch.

Have a great night!

Join the fun!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Woebegone Limericks

Limericks seem to have a bad rap. They rarely get face time in any of the serious creative writing classes-the only time I ever heard about them was on random St Patrick's Days in grammar school and maybe once during high school. I have always enjoyed a limerick when I came across one and since I recently found MadKane's Humor Blog I have been submerging myself in them! She is so incredibly crafty with these things!

This week's the Limerick-Off theme is "Woebegone Limericks" and the two first lines to choose from are:

"A man was recounting his woes"

"A gal was recounting her woes"

And here are my entries:

A gal was recounting her woes,
a fancy rhyme she tried to compose.
The pen wouldn't move,
A fact that could prove
She ought to be writing in prose.

A man was recounting his woes
As he sat on the street with no clothes.
His girlie was livid
the foreplay too vivid:
A vulgar man reaps what he sows!

Be sure to check out the other great entries this week!

I'm Not (very) Sorry. *Edited

I should be more apologetic for missing my post yesterday, but I'm finding it hard to muster much remorse this morning. I wish I had some awesome reason, but I really only have a few lame excuses...My husband's caught a nasty virus in his throat, my sunburn is killing me, the kids' sunburns are killing them which means they're bugging me, the dishes needed washing. Although all those excuses kept me from writing something worthwhile, they didn't stop me from playing mindless games on Facebook. While surfing the net last night in the hopes of finding inspiration for a creative blog post though, I came up with a character I want to explore. So in some small way my Sunday night failure wasn't that much of a loss.

One of the sites I like to play on is the Internet Anagram Server. I enjoy finding anagrams by hand, but this website is way better at them than I am! So when I am bored or searching for creativity (or working on the previously mentioned Mother Goose exercises) I browse through the search results to see what they come up with. Last night I plugged in my name-probably for the hundredth time since I discovered the site a few years ago-to see if anything new stuck out at me. Two words caught my attention--"Calla" and "whore". I'm no stranger to either word, but for some reason I kept coming back to them.

Now I have a new character and a bit of a story started in my WIP folder. Maybe now that she's on paper I won't return to her for months, or years, but I was so enthralled with her last night I even dreamt of her.

I'll be back later today with something of interest, I hope. The new Limerick-Off is up & the new Trifecta will be up soon, so I may work on those this afternoon.

**Edited to add: I have figured out why the name "Calla" continued to catch my eye--She is one of the main supporting characters in a book I started then set aside over a week ago!!! Here I was thinking that my Calla chose her name because of the calla lily, with Lily being too "pure" for Calla to keep a straight face when being introduced. Now I know for sure she will be set aside in my WIP folder for months or longer, so I can shake any connection in my head to Calla Moses in Jenny Wingfield's The Homecoming of Samuel Lake!**

Saturday, April 14, 2012

A Short Set of Cause and Effect Examples

Cause: I chose to be frugal with the SPF.
Effect: I may now be buying market shares of Aloe Vera.

Cause: I am nearly burnt to a crisp.
Effect: My brain is too fried to write anything intelligent today.

Cause: I signed up for the April NaBloPoMo.
Effect: I am forcing you to read several lines of junk to lessen my guilt.

Hope you all had as fun a Saturday as we did...Hopefully you all wore sunscreen though (snow can cause sunburns too!).

Friday, April 13, 2012

Finally Friday!

It's been a long week, I am glad it is the weekend. My cousin invited us to go for a ride on his boat tomorrow--I'm excited but a little nervous because of the kids...My husband joked we could get the kid leashes we always make fun of other parents for. My brother-in-law is coming to visit, possibly to stay. He arrives Monday or Tuesday, I need to find out since I am his ride home from the airport, it will be nice to have another familiar face around here for awhile.

These pictures are from our trip to the beach last week, I try to be the only one to control the camera otherwise we end up with at least five pictures of my cleavage as I bend down to play with the kids!

Have a great weekend!

A Letter of Apology, in 33 words.

This week's Trifextra Challenge on the Trifecta Challenge site is to write a letter of apology in exactly 33 words. Salutations, addresses & closings do not count.

It's Friday the Thirteenth, and I wanted to go with something more Jason-ish rather than black cat-ish. Not counting the greetings or closing this is exactly 33 words.

Dear Mr. McAllister,

I feel I owe you an apology for
the death of your wife.
I cannot say I feel
any remorse for killing her,
only that I regret
you weren't available
to watch it.

With Deepest Regrets,

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Storms Brewing

Sorry in advance for the potential rambling...And the run-ons, if you have read my profile then you have already been warned.

When I was younger, my sisters and I would lay out on the grass and watch the storm clouds-dark, swirly, angry-and count the seconds between lightning strikes and thunder claps to guess how far away the lightning was.

I still love a good storm, especially if there are strong winds involved. Everyone says storms bring change with them. But I feel like the recent change in my life is bringing the storms.

My husband and I thought that this move would be the best thing for our family, but we're almost two months into our new life and he is overstressed, I am overstressed, he is lonely, I am homesick. I keep warning everyone how much my husband doesn't like that he is stressed here. If we end up moving back the blame will fall on him, regardless of whether it is rightfully placed. The guilt of this fact, added to the stress and loneliness, weighs on me constantly. While I am at work I completely enjoy myself-I love working with my cousin (my boss)-and I am grateful for the opportunity we were given with the transfer. Outside of work though, I am not always so happy. I know there is always an adjustment period, I just hope it only lasts a short while longer.

There are so many things up in the air--every decision brings its own storm with it...To stay, something has to change for my husband and our stress situation--that alone is a storm to battle. To leave, a dozen storms will result! Just thinking about the fallout makes me anxious and depressed.

So instead of laying out and enjoying this storm, I'm trying to lock myself someplace safe where I don't have to think about it. It's not working well for me so far.

"Limerick-Off" Challenge

I have discovered ANOTHER fun poetry challenge to take part in!

Each week Mad Kane hosts a "limerick-off", where she provides a limerick and those entering the challenge respond with their own limerick using her first line.

For this week, you can choose between either of these gender specific first-line prompts:

"A fellow was starting to snap"
"A woman was starting to snap"

I love limericks so when I first found Mad's site I was excited, especially when she told me about the challenge. Then I felt discouraged today because I'm not too good with the funny. I can bring a random one-liner to the conversation once in awhile, but a whole 5 lines that have some sort of humorous kick? Ha, that alone is a challenge! But I am actually pleased with the two I came up with.

A fellow was starting to snap,
The others beginning to clap;
A girl they called Honey,
She danced for their money
Batting stray hands with a slap.

A woman was starting to snap,
The pea pile growing tall in her lap
The kids bitched and moaned
even the husband he groaned
"Why do I have to eat that crap?"

If you want to join the fun this week, visit this week's challenge post!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Sensational Haiku Wednesday-"Happiness"

I have written two haiku for today's Sensational Haiku Wednesday on YouKnowThatBlog. I know, what an overachiever hahaha!

My first haiku:

Both children napping
time enough to sneak off and read
just a few pages

My second haiku, and the eye candy that inspires it:

her face lighting up
smiling up at me

Two completely different things that make me happy on a regular basis!
I don't like the double use of "up" in my second one, but it works for the form.

Thanks for reading ;)

Join the fun!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Trifecta Challenge

One of the things I miss most about school is the assignments. I enjoy the pressure of a deadline, the forced focus on a particular subject. I have tried giving myself "homework" in the past, but it just doesn't have the same feel for some reason. Before I started blogging again I would look at challenge blogs-not just writing but crafting blogs too-and wish that I could participate. I probably could have taken part on my own, but like the self-assigned homework, it just didn't feel the same.

But now I have a blog! Now I don't have to sit on the sidelines! Now I can participate!

One of the challenges I am going to do is the Trifecta Writing Challenge. A weekly challenge with a single word prompt, your use of the word has to be based on the third definition of said word and your response needs to be between 33 and 333 words. Fun, right?

This week's prompt is "Scandal" and here is my response:

Within an ebony interior,
the letters smoked and curled,
crumbling to ash
Flames consumed the proof
written with her father's blood

Hope for his lover's child,
The scandal,
Her legacy,

You don't necessarily need to write a poem, but since it is still poetry month and I am trying to stick with the poetry theme most days for Blogher's NaBloPoMo I decided to go with a poem.

Thanks for reading!

Monday, April 9, 2012


I thought I was going to to write about whether to blog anonymously or not, and how I am a little bit of a coward. But a quarter of the way into the post I realized it was about bullying. So I won't be posting about anonymity or bullying tonight--the latter definitely needs more time to write itself.

I don't have a back up plan for an alternate post tonight. Since I started this blog and jumped right into a poetry themed NaBloPoMo at the same time, my posts this month have been and will likely remain heavy on the poetry side. But poetry, and even writing in general, is not my main focus for this blog, and I plan on sprinkling a couple more random posts here and there in the next few weeks. Along with my post on bullying, I am hitting a milestone birthday this month and will likely post at least once about this. This post is kind of included in the whole "random" topic thing, since it is not about poetry or writing, or anything other than why I don't have a poetry-inspired post tonight.

(I can't decide how I want to or if I should close my posts.)

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Context/POV in my poems

I'm tired, I'm not sure that I am correct in calling this problem 'context' or not and it isn't important enough at this moment to research the correct term. But one of the things I have trouble with in my poetry is worrying that people will assume, correctly or incorrectly, that my work is about me. I don't seem to have an issue with this in any of the stories I write, I guess because they are longer and fleshed out more, maybe? Anyway, this is one of the things that makes me hesitate most often when it comes to sharing my poems.

In a lot of my writing I draw on material from my personal life, but in high school I didn't want anyone to know that (let's be honest I still don't want people to know that!), so I would try and make the poems more universal. Usually I would do this by adding in extra lines or stanzas that fit with the rest of the poem but were about situations that were obviously not my own. Here's an example from one such poem:

'Instead, I worry
how drunk my dad will be,
if my friends will notice the bruises on my back,
or if my boss will fire me
when he finds out
I am only fifteen
or that I am illegal.'

Anyone who would've read or heard this poem in my English class would know that at least two of these did not fit me, so I felt it would be unlikely for them to assume any of the rest of the poem was personal to me.

Another way I found around this was remaining gender neutral (well, back then I thought it was gender neutral, now I see that some of it could've been taken as a comment on my sexual orientation) by saying things like "my girlfriend or boyfriend", "my football coach", "my prom dress" all in the same poem. And I have several poems that are in second or third person instead of first person POV.

Even with all the work I put in to disguising the poems, I was still terrified someone would guess that some part of it was relative to me, even if only in a small way. I don't even know what I thought might happen-I kept to myself but wasn't picked on, I doubt I would become the subject of ridicule or anything.

I own several textbooks and handbooks that discuss this, and even though they explain it logically and I have heard people assure me that I worry for no reason, I still get nervous when my poems are read. If you happen to have a tip on getting over this, or if you do the same thing and want to share how you handle it in your work I would appreciate it!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Mother Goose Still Inspires Me

I mentioned the other day when I was praising captchas that I have a list of first lines from poems. I should have been more specific, because in reality I probably wasn't the first to come up with the idea and if I ever get popular enough for trolls to steal my ideas this one probably won't be thieved. I have a list of all the first lines of Mother Goose nursery rhymes. If I remember right I found the list through Project Gutenberg a few years ago-probably in the table of contents of one of the collections. I copied them into Excel so I can sort or search however I please.

So far I have only really worked with a couple of them, I was so pleased with the first one but then wanted to try different ways to explore the other ones instead of just transferring those same ideas from the first to the rest. I pick them randomly-first using the "close eyes and point" method, then using once I discovered it.

After I mentioned it the other night I went back and looked through the few I have so far. They are fun to play with and full of possibilities. Here's what I have come up with so far for I won't be my father's Jack:

I won’t be my father’s Jack

A fabric jest, woken myth
Two jets fire back a hymn
Brace whom a jetty finks

I twist and turn and
Won’t say a word but
Be assured that I know
My day is coming. The angry
Father’s twisting the handle.
Jack in the box. Pop

Jack is the favored son
Jackie should have been a boy
Jack is a feminine boy. Goes by Jackie

Won’t won ton two not now
Fathers father fat her stare hare hear hears share fare fares safe hate hater hates haters has
Sea seat feat fear fears ear ears are art heat heats heart hearts sear sat ate eat shaft

Some of it is just word play, random nonsensical lists of words. But some of it could be the start of an interesting piece of work. Inspiration can be found anywhere-even in silly nursery rhymes!

Friday, April 6, 2012

Favorite Poems

Lots of people can easily tell you who their favorite poet is or which poem they've read has made the most impact on their lives. I cannot tell you such a thing, because I can never pick a definite favorite anything. I love nearly every single book I have ever read. I love nearly every single song I like--if I don't like it I certainly don't love it. I love quite a few poems and poets and can't really say which would be my favorite. Well, I could say that I am my own favorite poet, but I have been slacking and am unpublished etc, so that would just be conceited on my part.

The closest I have to a current favorite is Langston Hughes' Evil. I have had it as my signature on one of my personal email accounts for a year or two. It is a short poem, a single stanza of four lines, but it is powerful. He was referring to racial injustice, but it can be applied to any theme in anyone's life..It's saying "Look this really pisses me off, and it may not piss you off yet but you're going to hear enough about it from me that soon enough you'll be pissed off too!" He just says it much better than me!!

If you've found your way to my blog today, what poem inspires or moves you?


Looks like what drives me crazy
Don't have no effect on you-
But I'm gonna keep on at it
Till it drives you crazy, too.

Langston Hughes

Tired of Being Good at the Good Show (my first bloggy rant!)

I am so tired of putting on a "good show" for everyone. I don't want attention, I just don't want to have to always pretend like everything is okay and that I'm incredibly happy all the time. Or, I'd like it to not be an act but I know that isn't the most realistic thought I've had.

We recently moved 3000 miles away from our hometown. The Internets were a little dishonest about the cost of living decrease, and we didn't do much more research than checking Sperling's and asking the one person we know who has ever been here before. So I under budgeted and now things are a little more stressful than we expected. A lot more stressful on my husband, which makes things even more stressful on me. But at work I tell everyone how great it is here, I tell my long-time customers how much better the weather is, I tell my family how excited I am for all the perks living in a major metropolis on the coast has to offer. I tell my husband when he says we should go back that I don't think it's a good idea, I tell my boss that it is just my husband who is unhappy and that it is mainly just a mix of stress and loneliness.

But I tell myself that I can't wait for the floor to fall out and we have no choice but to go home, and I tell myself that as long as I can make it through this moment right now eventually this all won't suck so badly. And I tell myself all the great things and reasons to stay and I want so desperately to believe it, because some part of me wants to stay here-I like it here. My over-analytical mind counters every point I make, positive or negative. One moment I will think that staying is the best choice in the long term, even if it is miserable in the short term--then I respond to myself (yes I talk to myself in my head, doesn't everybody?) with something about how it's just my pride not wanting to admit that we were too hasty in making this move, or how terrified I am of eating crow when everyone who advised us against the move laughs at me for returning. And in turn, I rename the good things.

I am just stuck on this mental merry-go-round and am helpless to get off and go straight. At this very moment I don't care if it is straight back home, or if it is straight forward in our new life, just as long as it was not up in the air.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Fake Funeral

I just posted a funny memory over on Blogher about my sister's fake funeral we threw as teens. While I certainly dread the thought of the real ones we will both have someday, this memory brings a smile to my face!

In Loving Memory Of...

Today's prompt for NaBloPoMo on Blogher is "What poem brings comfort at a funeral?"

I have been fortunate in that I have only attended a small handful, maybe 5, funerals in my lifetime. In 2010 I had the honor of creating the memorial handout for the service of a close friend's wife. I wanted to choose a poem that was meaningful for her and her family, something that wasn't just filler in the handout. After reading through a dozen or so poems I came across "To Those I Love" by Isla Paschal Richardson. Sure, there may be better funeral poems out there, but I could almost hear my friend saying this to her family if only she had had the chance. In fact, if I wasn't worried about being morbid I would tell everyone I wanted this to be read at my own funeral-but I need to wait a few years at least before making funeral arrangements. (The fact that it was possibly read at Sinatra's funeral was an added bonus as my friend and his wife is/was a fan of Old Blue Eyes and love random trivia facts).

To Those I Love

If I should ever leave you,
Whom I love
To go along the silent way
Grieve not.
Nor speak of me with tears.
But laugh and talk of me
As if I were beside you there.

(I'd come. . .I'd come,
Could I but find a way!
But would not tears and
And grief be barriers?)

And when you hear a song
Or see a bird I loved,
Please do not let the thought of me be sad
for I am loving you
Just as I always have.

You were so good to me!
There are so many things
I wanted still to do
So many things I wanted to say to you
Remember that
I did not fear
It was just leaving you
That was so hard to face.

We cannot see beyond
But this I know:
I loved you so
'twas heaven here with you

by Isla Paschal Richardson.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

For love of the Captcha!

I have a lot of ideas for writing built up.
I have a couple different notebooks lying around with images or dialogue written down, usually the notebooks are well hidden when I need them but if I can remember what I wanted to write when I finally find one then I do.
I have a WIP folder on my desktop, most of the files only have a paragraph or two typed up but at least I know where they are.
I have an Excel sheet of first lines of poems and occasionally pick one at random to expand on and make it my own.
I have a dozen or so books on various creative writing subjects that I will do an exercise out of.

But my current favorite source of ideas is the annoying little "captcha" that so many sites use to verify you are a real person. I always see people ragging on them-because it takes an extra two seconds to figure out what it says and type it out. I love that you can refresh it as many times as you want-I'll flip through 5-6 of them for fun.

I have a list that I add every one that captures my attention for more than the second it takes to type it in. I especially love the ones that use real words that are randomly thrown together, but I also like some of the nonsensical ones too. There are so many possibilities in those little things! In fact, I chose the title of my blog from one of them-it just stuck out from the first few on the list. Others on the list seem like they would make interesting surnames or addresses. My absolute favorite one I am saving in case I ever become a food blogger or author. It's not terribly likely but I'm still keeping it to myself for now just in case!

So take a moment to think of me and the possibilities of those little words and numbers next time you are cursing the internet because you can't tell if it says "d" or "cl"!

No Sestinas, but here's a Haiku!

I am failing again at the sestina. Apparently my old college try isn't good enough, considering that my study habits in college were fairly typical in the whole "wait til 8 hours before the paper is due to open the book" method.

I did some googling to expand on what I already know about the sestina, but didn't find much other than the history of the form and a few suggestions on how to begin writing one from scratch. My typical way of starting, and never finishing, is the more common but least successful way: pick 6 end words and force them into line (haha). Several people suggest that a better way is to just write the first stanza of the poem and then the end words will be given to you by default. So I think I might try that method later this week.

In the meantime, I revisited 'You Know That Blog' for her weekly haiku meme. Last time I was blogging I participated a few times and decided now is the perfect time to start up again, what with my new blog and it being poetry month and participating in Blogher's poetry themed NaBloPoMo. If you aren't into her weekly haiku feature, the rest of Jenn's blog is pretty interesting. The lame thing about picking this week join in on the haiku fun is that it's an open theme week. I hate open themes. I prefer forced topics--sounds less creative but I feel like I get to spend more time being creative with my writing time rather than spending a chunk of it brainstorming. Even though I have a ton of ideas to use for "later", when I am actually sitting down none of them feel appealing.

Today, however, I wasted work time instead on brainstorming! This kind of reflects my mood this afternoon:

A complete lack of
Everything necessary
To survive this time

I'm annoyed with the "A", even though it works and if I was being objective could say it was kind of putting the emphasis on the rest of the line (it's a bit of a stretch but still). I feel a little like the "A" was a cop-out syllable. Oh and technically the second line is 8 syllables, but since I (and most everyone I know) pronounces it "ev-ree" not "ev-er-ee" I feel it works.

Now, back to the sestinas...

Join the fun!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Sestinas, Pt 1

Hopefully tomorrow will follow with a part 2.

I have until tomorrow night at 11p EST to write a sestina in order to enter it in the Blogher Poetry Contest. This is the format, taken from the post on Blogher:

"Stanza One: A, B, C, D, E, F
Stanza Two: F, A, E, B, D, C
Stanza Three: C, F, D, A, B, E
Stanza Four: E, C, B, F, A, D
Stanza Five: D, E, A, C, F, B
Stanza Six: B, D, F, E, C, A
Envoy: uses two end-words per line (with three lines total) with one word appearing in the middle of the line and the other word still being utilized as an end word."

I have attempted the sestina twice before, and I suck at it. I love the challenge of a fixed form, as much as I love the freedom of an open form poem. But the sestina can be SO tough! When I have tried in the past, I have always picked 6 random nouns-completely random-and tried to force them into a prosy story that fits the format. Both poems are left unfinished in a notebook somewhere, because they really did suck. This time I am still going to go with some random words, but I'm not going to go with just nouns. Maybe that will help. If not I will still force myself to finish, even if it is past the deadline for the contest.

Monday, April 2, 2012

April Challenges Bring...

...about renewed commitment to writing? ...a sense of accomplishment? ...a reason to search for excuses to get out of writing? ...all of the above?

My timing for getting back into the whole blogging thing happens to coincide with
National Poetry Month, and in honor means the NaBloPoMo theme for April is Poetry! So even though I'm a day or two late I'm going to attempt this challenge. Along with any other random post I write, I will also post something involving poetry.

There are daily prompts available on Blogher based on the monthly theme, and while I won't use them everyday I liked today's prompt:

"What was the first poem you ever memorized?"

While I may have memorized a few lines here and there before 7th grade, the first few stanzas of 'The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam' was the first I consciously had to memorize then recite in front of my 7th grade English class. I still remember the very first stanza, but since I haven't reread the poem in more than a decade I can't really recall any other lines. I was so nervous reciting it, which is funny because up until mid-Junior High I had never really cared about talking in class or anything, I even seemed to enjoy it. That time though, I was terrified, and have remained nervous and scared of public speaking ever since. While I could almost blame my fear of speaking on that one instance, almost, I defintely can credit my love of poetry to it.

"Hark, for morning in the bowl of night,
has flung the stone that sets the stars to flight.
And lo, the hunter in the east has caught
the Sultan's turret in a noose of light."

Complete and Utter Randomness...

That is what this blog will consist of. I have ideas for a handful of different blogs, each one devoted to just one topic. But I haven't the time or motivation to commit to more than one regularly, so I'm just going to post anything and everything here, and maybe one day I'll separate it all out. For now tags will have to do.

You will occasionally find posts about my life & family, photography, creative writing, crafting stuff, recipes, book reviews, rants, opinion pieces and whatever other random thing I feel like writing about.

This isn't my first attempt at blogging, my last attempt was a couple years ago but I overcensored myself because I worried what my imaginary audience would think, so I deleted the blog. Now, I am hoping to not worry as much and just write.