Now. Now.

on thehomefrontandbeyond:

okay, I will start now………

Originally posted on Live & Learn:

debbie-millman

As Robert Frost once wrote, “A poem begins as a lump in the throat, a sense of wrong, a homesickness, a lovesickness. It is never a thought to begin with.”

I recommend the following course of action for those, like you, who are just starting out, or who, like me, may be re-configuring midway through. Heed the words of Robert Frost. Start with a big fat lump in your throat. Start with a profound sense of wrong, a deep homesickness, a crazy lovesickness, and run with it. If you imagine less, less will be what you undoubtedly deserve. Do what you love. And don’t stop until you get what you love. Work as hard as you can. Imagine immensities. Don’t compromise and don’t waste time. In order to strive for a remarkable life, you have to decide that you want one. Start now. Not twenty years from now. Not thirty…

View original 32 more words

Published in: on March 31, 2015 at 8:20 am  Comments (4)  

NOT IN A BOTTLE

TIME REALLY DOES FLY
BUT NOT CAREFULLY CONTAINED ~
SOMETIMES IT STANDS STILL.

Published in: on March 28, 2015 at 10:23 am  Comments (6)  

Surprise

Early spring snowfall
Admittedly beautiful
Fairyland amok.

Published in: on March 26, 2015 at 12:17 pm  Comments (11)  

The Divine

Prosaic poetry
Turns banal into inspiring
Evoking hidden magic
In the baking powder

A tea canister
Holds warmth and comfort
Loosened by
Boiling water

Crusty French bread
Lathered in real butter
Heaven bursts forth
On the tongue

Lunch with friends
Or a favourite sister ~
Time stands still, waits
Leaving a crumpled napkin

Life delights
If you do not think about it too hard.

Nonsense makes sense
If you wait long enough ~

Published in: on March 25, 2015 at 10:14 am  Comments (16)  

Tit for Tat

The silence of the day
Broken by an errant car horn ~
The quiet of the morning
Splintered by a dog barking ~
The peaceful beginning
Violated by a hurly burly bustling day.

Convivial conversation breaks the evening gloom
And
Shared food revives the spirit
Then ~
Respite comes at the end of the day:
A glass of wine, a good book, silence restored.

Published in: on March 24, 2015 at 12:15 pm  Comments (19)  

Eat the COOKIE!

This week’s newspaper column (and if you are wondering, Ruthven is near my hometown):

Question: What do you call a story about a broken pencil?
Answer: Pointless

Most scribes fight against “broken pencil syndrome”. To have an article, a column, an essay or a book deemed pointless (useless, futile, meaningless, stupid, inane, needless or worthless) is a cut that does not heal. We combat this by trying to be topical, interesting, current, and sometimes an advocate on the side of the devil just to make things a bit more stimulating. I have oft been told that I err on the side of the angels, but so be it. I can be downright curmudgeonly, but I choose not to be (for the most part) in this column.

The source of my opening “quote” is the Reader’s Digest, a magazine I much maligned in my younger days for no reason other than that someone once made the remark that while the contents were not drivel, they were also not cutting edge. I now disagree with that assessment, not only because my oldest brother gifted me a subscription to the 5” x 7” tiny tome for Christmas, but because I really enjoy the articles and funny and thoughtful tidbits throughout.

In the latest edition I read with some interest an article called “36 Questions to Love By”; “The 2015 Trust Poll Winners”; “Body of Evidence”; “It’s Funny What You Remember”; “Gone Strolling”; and “13 Things You Should Know About Breaking Bad Habits.” And that is only about half of the titles that appeal to me. I learned a lot in those few articles—and found them stimulating and entertaining. None were pointless.

“36 Questions to Love By”, written by Mandy Len Catron tells the story of her experiment with social psychologist, Arthur Aron’s supposition that he could make two strangers fall in love, first by answering 36 questions, then staring into the eyes of the object of your affection for 3 minutes. Mandy called the exercise “accelerated intimacy” and admitted that she and her acquaintance did fall in love, but concluded: “Love didn’t happen to us. We’re in love because we each made the choice to be.” I think that the experiment though did “generate trust and intimacy, the feelings love needs to thrive.”

Who Are Canada’s most trusted influencers? The 2015 Trust Poll Winners counted down the top 20 movers, shakers and opinion makers chosen by Canadians. David Suzuki (who just happens to hail from Ruthven originally) was number one, and Galen Weston (of President’s Choice Loblaw’s fame) was number 20. Only 5 of the twenty were women, so I would say we have a little work to do there. I was surprised and pleased to see airwaves (both radio and TV) personality Marilyn Dennis as number 19, but as they explained, she has been doing her business for over 30 years and “spends more hours engaging the public than most people spend talking to their spouses or children.”

Respected author Jane Smiley penned “It’s Funny What You Remember” about catching up with a classmate she had not seen for over 40 years. She was surprised about what he remembered about her, but more surprised by what he did not know. She made this observation which is very telling: “…most of your life is hidden from people you see day after day…”

In the “13 Things You Should Know About Breaking Bad Habits”, I came across one that I found gasp-inducing. Luc Rinaldi, the author of the article noted in number 12 that: “Draining your energy by kicking one habit can make others more tempting. Case in point: a 2012 study in The Journal of Social Psychology showed that people in relationships were more likely to be unfaithful after resisting a plate of freshly baked cookies.” I am with Cookie Monster here when I say we should all adhere to his advice: “EAT THE COOKIE!”

I am an avid supporter of magazines and books and newspapers. And while I read online via my computer and my newly minted cell phone (yes, I am finally in the 21st century), and I have a kobo, I still love the feel of a book, a mag, or newspaper in my hands. They are solid carriers of the written word—and the smell of the printed word is one that should be bottled.

Published in: on March 24, 2015 at 3:31 am  Comments (28)  
Tags: , , ,

I need a belief system

on thehomefrontandbeyond:

This is wonderful and a great addition even if you already have a belief system………….

Originally posted on Live & Learn:

sleep-rest-light-sun-woman

Heather Havrilesky, Like a Prayer:

I don’t believe in God, but I need some kind of a prayer to repeat when things go haywire. I need a prayer because, as a writer with several unruly dependents under my roof, each day is a rollercoaster, a crapshoot, an exercise in uncertainty.

[…]

See how the tiniest events can shift the barometer just enough to stir up a storm? My buoyant mood sinks. The day that felt so full of promise sags, landing in a haze of exhaustion and niggling worries by the time I crawl into bed.

I need a belief system. I need a morning ritual. I need to say some bold and glorious words out loud at the start of the day, to remind myself who I am and what I’m doing and what the point of it all is. Unfortunately, I don’t like saying bold and glorious words…

View original 266 more words

Published in: on March 22, 2015 at 2:13 pm  Comments (2)  

Wearin’ of the Green

Leprechauns, fairies,
Four leafed clovers, pot of gold
All are hard to find.

Green beer, jolly cheers
A raised glass to the high road
Easy reach today.

Published in: on March 17, 2015 at 12:35 pm  Comments (14)  

Always Up

I dedicate this to David Kanigan who is my inspiration–this poem was on his blog–this is also my column for the newsaper:

“The second half of my life will be ice
breaking up on the river,
rain soaking the fields,
a hand held out,
a fire,
and smoke going upward,
always up.” – last stanza of Joyce Stuphen’s “Crossroads”

In her poem, Crossroads, Joyce Sutphen sets the course for the second half of her life. She vows to “dress for the occasion” and her hair will be “whatever colour” she pleases. In essence she is determined to be herself. I can relate to her poem, being in the midst of the second half of my life, but I do not want those who are still in the first half not to take the same advice. She counts birthdays not as other people do as the years piling up—but as the beginning of something new, something to celebrate. She says:

“Everyone will go on celebrating the old birthday,
counting the years as usual,
but I will count myself new from this
inception, this imprint of my own desire.”

She says that the second half of her life “will be wide-eyed/fingers shifting through fine sands,/arms loose at my sides/ wandering feet”. I say that we should approach all of life and all it has to offer with wide eyes, open arms, and wanderlust—not just the late summer, fall and winter of our lives.

I was heartened by a story on the television program Sunday Morning today. It was about Late Bloomers, and the fact that it is never too late to find your passion—or to find a new passion. A professor was interviewed and asked by the reporter if he thought it was ever too late to follow a new passion, and while he admitted that a 90 year old might not be able to fulfill their dream of being in the NBA, they could certainly be a poet.

Numerous examples were given of people who started a new endeavour at a later age—Julia Child did not start her cooking television career until she was 50; and Frank McCourt did not write his first book (Angela’s Ashes) until he was 66 and it turned out to be a Pulitzer prize winner. And of course let us not forget painter Grandma Moses. Anna Mary Robertson Moses did not start painting until she was in her 70s. Even Martha Stewart did not start her television career until she was 40.

Each of these people had a full first half of their lives—in fact, it was probably the first half that inspired the success of their second half. So take heart those of you who are still youngsters—enjoy setting the pace now, but know that the second half still has lots to offer.

In her poem, Joyce forecasts that in the second half of her life:

“There will be new dreams every night,
and the drapes will never be closed.
I will toss my string of keys into a deep
well and old letters into the grate.”

I am not so sure about dropping my keys into a deep well except perhaps metaphorically, but I love the idea of “new dreams every night” and drapes that “will never be closed.” New dreams, new aspirations, new imaginings, new wishes and desires, hopes and ambitions—these are the things we should never lose (along with the keys to our front door and car).

Not closing your drapes keeps you open to life. And is that not what keeps the heart beating?

Published in: on March 16, 2015 at 7:03 pm  Comments (15)  

Always Up

I dedicate this to David Kanigan–the poem I use in my newspaper column was on his blog:

“The second half of my life will be ice
breaking up on the river,
rain soaking the fields,
a hand held out,
a fire,
and smoke going upward,
always up.” – last stanza of Joyce Stuphen’s “Crossroads”

In her poem, Crossroads, Joyce Sutphen sets the course for the second half of her life. She vows to “dress for the occasion” and her hair will be “whatever colour” she pleases. In essence she is determined to be herself. I can relate to her poem, being in the midst of the second half of my life, but I do not want those who are still in the first half not to take the same advice. She counts birthdays not as other people do as the years piling up—but as the beginning of something new, something to celebrate. She says:

“Everyone will go on celebrating the old birthday,
counting the years as usual,
but I will count myself new from this
inception, this imprint of my own desire.”

She says that the second half of her life “will be wide-eyed/fingers shifting through fine sands,/arms loose at my sides/ wandering feet”. I say that we should approach all of life and all it has to offer with wide eyes, open arms, and wanderlust—not just the late summer, fall and winter of our lives.

I was heartened by a story on the television program Sunday Morning today. It was about Late Bloomers, and the fact that it is never too late to find your passion—or to find a new passion. A professor was interviewed and asked by the reporter if he thought it was ever too late to follow a new passion, and while he admitted that a 90 year old might not be able to fulfill their dream of being in the NBA, they could certainly be a poet.

Numerous examples were given of people who started a new endeavour at a later age—Julia Child did not start her cooking television career until she was 50; and Frank McCourt did not write his first book (Angela’s Ashes) until he was 66 and it turned out to be a Pulitzer prize winner. And of course let us not forget painter Grandma Moses. Anna Mary Robertson Moses did not start painting until she was in her 70s. Even Martha Stewart did not start her television career until she was 40.

Each of these people had a full first half of their lives—in fact, it was probably the first half that inspired the success of their second half. So take heart those of you who are still youngsters—enjoy setting the pace now, but know that the second half still has lots to offer.

In her poem, Joyce forecasts that in the second half of her life:

“There will be new dreams every night,
and the drapes will never be closed.
I will toss my string of keys into a deep
well and old letters into the grate.”

I am not so sure about dropping my keys into a deep well except perhaps metaphorically, but I love the idea of “new dreams every night” and drapes that “will never be closed.” New dreams, new aspirations, new imaginings, new wishes and desires, hopes and ambitions—these are the things we should never lose (along with the keys to our front door and car).

Not closing your drapes keeps you open to life. And is that not what keeps the heart beating?

Published in: on March 16, 2015 at 6:06 pm  Comments (14)  
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 656 other followers