I did not ask

I did not ask 

After the sun had left

For anything

Not in the darkness

Or the darkest part of the night

As the rain fell outside

And sirens wailed

Somewhere in the streets

I did not ask one word

In the stillness 

Within the walls of

Concrete and plaster

But I lay within listening

To the wind dance 

With autumn raindrops

Waiting for sleep to steal in 

Between one breath

and the next

The weight of knowing 

Like pouring honey over

A hornets’ nest

until no longer 

Can I stay in place

To receive the consequence

Or help those

Who must bear it

I should have asked 

To be taken

Like a leaf newly turned

Dropped from the limb

Swept up from the ground

By the wind then left

Plastered by the rain

On some other window

Waiting to be seen

To be discovered in time

Then discarded long enough

To return to the soil

I know well

I should have asked 

To scream my silence

Pierce the night

Until dawn broke in 

And let the light reveal

As it could

I should have

But could not

Instead in the darkness

Waiting 

Wrapped in blankets 

against the chill

I listen to the rainfall

And imagine parts of me

Washing away with it

Into the deep night

Hoping dreams

Will take me there

~

my voice

my voice has grown thin in this storm

with the coming and going of waves

the rising tide

and boats crashing in the harbour

you will continue to tell me 

how to feel 

though you are dressed now 

in different clothes

fighting for annihilation 

of what you have sewn up 

into justice 

for those you hate

toes in the sand against the shoreline

I watch the sky for glimpses of stars

through broken clouds

the storms breathes to gather strength

debris litters the beach 

as the waves crash in front of me

I have been kissed in awkward silence

an impuslive unwanted moment that ended

when I went home alone, unharmed

I have been asked to do something 

I did not want to do and no was enough 

I have been touched when I have not wanted to be

I have been raped and no was not enough

I have been beaten by one I loved

until bruises filled my chest and arms

were filled with sleeves of black tattoos 

knowing that difference 

has now not become enough 

for you

Any Ordinary Day

I was thinking earlier today that it is time to start working on a new book. I put together this book in October 2008 – my first foray into putting anything anything into print. I did it for myself, for my daughters as well. It was good work, a fun project to work on and a push for me to do something more with my writing and photography than keep it hidden (which was essentially what I had been doing prior to that). I don’t know what I will create from the scads & scraps but, it will be fun to think about. I have a couple of ideas kicking around in the old brain socket though…

You can still preview the first fifteen pages of Any Ordinary Day here if you like. Creating this book was such a positive boost for me personally. I know that it doesn’t count in the actual publishing world – which is just fine. I didn’t work on this project for that reason. Sometimes, I just need to do things for the sake of doing them – to say yes, I can do this. I think I have another go and unleash my creative self! One of my May projects just decided. Whoooo!

{imagine.create.become} day 31 of my inspiration project

It’s the last day of my 31 day inspiration project. I have been sitting quietly at my desk, catching up on emails, paperwork and  phone calls- everything that piled up over the past two days that I was off sick (it piles up so quickly believe me), and in foothills of the mountain that I am sitting in front of, I can’t help but be thankful that every day this month I was able to find something to inspire me. Even in the most difficult and darkest times in my life, I have been able to do this. In fact, this is why I wrote this:

We must find the beauty in the darkest of days,
find laughter in the deep silence of the soul
to truly understand the great gift that this life
brings to us each and every ordinary day.

I wrote it to remind myself that every day, it is possible. It is possible to imagine, to create and to become. Those words together, imagine.create.become , I have adopted as a kind of mantra. I adopted them years ago in fact after receiving gift of a silver bracelet with those words stamped on the band. It is possible each day to tune in and be inspired. It is possible to find something that moves you, evokes some emotional response (from happy to furious), that makes you comfortable or very uncomfortable. The what isn’t good or bad – what is important is that it pushes you out of your seat, pokes at your brain, makes you think, makes you start to see the world from a different angle, triggers a spark in you that allows you to be creative and express something.

Someone once said to me a long while ago: “I am not creative – I can’t paint or draw or write or dance or play an instrument or sing.” I will say now what I said then (and have said many times to different people since). Being creative, being inspired, does not have to result in picking up a paint brush or a guitar or a pen. I know some amazing people who are artists with a blow torch, a wrench, a computer keyboard and so many other traditionally “unartistic” things. What does it really mean to be inspired? Does it have to be only about art? Why limit yourself? Why limit your thinking?

When I am allowing myself to become inspired by something – it isn’t necessarily to do anything traditionally ‘artistic’. Instead, for me, it is allowing myself to become more open to something new, even just for a few moments, in such a way that I may just have the opportunity to experience the world in a new way. That direct experience, and its expression through my own eyes, fingers, voice… that’s what makes inspiration have meaning for me.It is also what pushes me to share it.

Now that the month is over, I have thirty-one little pebbles jingling around in my pockets to remind me as I walk on.

~

{imagine.create.become} day 29 & 30

Been out with the flu the past couple of days but am on the mend now I think… I didn’t want to miss posting the inspiration from the time I’ve spent resting and essentially doing nothing (which is very hard for me to do) I did read a bit in between sleeping and came across this passage by Deng Ming Dao about views:

Red sea through pine lattice.
Islands kneel like vassals before headlands.
Rain clouds snag on coastal ridges.
Yarrow stands spectral in the lighthouse beam.
~

“our view of any one subject if it is large, is never whole but is a composite image in our minds…”

I would also say that this is true of small and medium sized ‘things’ too… Everything depends on the view to be ‘known’ and even then what do you really know?

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{imagine.create.become} day 28

 

bad wolf.

Lately, my daughters have become flashed with Dr. Who. I will admit, I am thrilled. You see, I grew up with the Doctor (original Doctor with the beautiful long scarf that I so wanted to have as my own) but for whatever reason – never made the time to watch the new series, at least not often. It wasn’t until I went to see an old friend at the beginning of this year – he and I watched a lot of season five almost that week… and well obviously I was hooked again. I have been talking with my girls since about watching the series… but it is impossible to rent the dvd’s. We tried to no avail.. instead we had to resort to buy them… but just before we did – Space started show them from the beginning of season 1 – which is how my daughters became hooked. Whooo. Tonight we watched the season finale of season 1… the Daleks vs. the Doctor. My youngest declared that the Daleks are a bunch of grade 8 girls (it’s ok – she’s in gr. 8 and knows what she’s talking about)… Rose and the Doctor… the bad wolf. The inspiration today is a speech that Rose gives when the Doctor sends her home and she is sitting in the diner with her mum and Mickey. The Doctor taught her how to live each day – not to sit and do nothing, let life happen – instead he showed her a different way – to do something, fight for what you believe in, stand up and be heard. It’s like a bloody kick to the chest but it’s true. There are moments when you just have to stand up and be heard.

There’s that – and also a quote of Deng Ming Dao that is sticking in my head. He wrote once about how vomiting is an action of the human body that allows you to be completely present, in the moment. When you throw up, you can’t be anywhere else.

Today – both of these concepts inspire me…. thought quite honestly I could do without the vomiting.

{imagine.create.become} day 27

I loathe the expression “What makes him tick.” It is the American mind, looking for simple and singular solution, that uses the foolish expression. A person not only ticks, he also chimes and strikes the hour, falls and breaks and has to be put together again, and sometimes stops like an electric clock in a thunderstorm.
~ James Thurber

 

Today my inspiration comes from being complicated. 🙂

{imagine.create.become} day 25

Today my inspiration comes from reading… to be more specific from reading my friend Stephen Hopson’s new book “Obstacle Illusions”.  I started reading last night, and then finished reading the entire book this afternoon. The last chapter of the book made me tear up. There were other stories that made seeing the words on the page a challenge because of the tears. I don’t want to give any of it away – I encourage you to buy his book and read the stories for yourself.

What I can tell you is – Stephen relates interesting, inspiring and moving stories about his life in each chapter, demonstrating how he has overcome obstacles in his personal life. I found the stories engaging, and I liked the way he spoke about the people in his life who helped to shape the person he is today. It is hard not to be inspired by someone who refuses to be limited by anyone or anything, regardless of the situation at hand. He reminded me, as I was reading, that anything is possible and trusting your instinct is paramount.
There is much more that I could say right now, talk about what has sparked in me after reading his book, but instead, I am just going sit here smiling and let things percolate. I can “see” something that his words have inspired for me. When it’s ready I will share. Thank you Stephen for the gift of your words and for sharing about your life.

🙂