Home Repair

How many times
Can a body be cut open?
How many times
Can that body bounce back?
What is the limitβ€”six times? Seven, eight?

A body is so much more than just a bodyβ€”
It’s a home.
It can grow other bodies,
Shelter them from harm,
Sustain them.
A body is a temple,
Made sacred by the presence of a soul.

But a body cannot be
Continuously sliced, sampled,
Diced, drilled into.
There is always pain attendant.
A body can only withstand so much.

Some pain never goes entirely away.

(c) 2022. All rights reserved.

Sleep Away

Sleepytime buds. πŸ™‚

It’s a beautiful day to be curled
Up beneath a cozy blanket with a
Good book in hand
And a mug of tea at my side.

But it’s been the same
Every day this week,
And I am so very tired.

I slip so easily into
Morpheus’ arms,
Regardless of hour,
Regardless of obligations,
And I linger much longer
Than I ought.

I cannot help it.
No matter how long I sleep,
It’s never enough.
Morpheus is impossible to resist,
And I would prefer not to most of the time.

(c) 2022. All rights reserved.

Time to Change

March might feel more like
Spring if it didn’t cram four
Seasons into one.

I miss the April
Showers of my youth, but not
The more recent floods.

Will these new April
Showers bring Mayflowers? Or
Will they bring more mud?

I long to witness
Springtime fieldwork once again.
Impossible now.

(c) 2022. All rights reserved.

The Zephyr

Well, it sure has been a while, hasn’t it? I can’t believe I’ve taken this long a break from blogging, but it feels like I’ve had so much on my plate lately, whether or not I actually have. Pero, asΓ­ es la vida, cariΓ±o.

So in order to help me get my blogging habit back on track, I’m going to start NaPoWriMo off right with a free verse poem on one of my favorite topics: Iowa’s crazy weather. I hope you like it!

Dying evergreens stand
Tall in the gale outside
My windows, but
Their remaining needles
Pay the price
For decades of fortitude.

Will I have the strength
To withstand the coming storms?
Or will I,
Like my home’s failing windbreak,
One day bow to the Zephyr,
Exhausted and broken-backed
From my struggle?

(c) 2022. All rights reserved.

It’s the climb

Well, November sure was a blur, wasn’t it? I think this is the first year I’ve failed at NaBloPoMo. Well, the first year I’ve signed up to do it and failed – the college years don’t count. πŸ˜‰πŸ˜„

It bothers me to start things and then not finish them, but I think I just needed to focus on other things in November, like catching up on the sleep I haven’t been getting. Not that focusing on my sleep deprivation improved things any. It probably made them worse. On the bright side, I’ve been doing a lot of writing… πŸ™ƒ

I used to love the holidays, but it seems like the older I get, the harder it is to find that Christmas spirit. This year, for whatever reason, it’s been unusually difficult. Maybe it’s because this whole year has been unusually difficult, maybe it’s because I’m once again in the midst of a writerly crisis of confidence – I don’t know.

I do know that I’ve had “The Christmas Waltz” stuck in my head most of the day and I am super sick of it. Maybe that’ll be the next Christmas song I parody…

My post editor has assured me that the last time I edited this post was at 11:40 p.m. on December 7 (“a date which will live in infamy”), 2020. Clearly, not finishing things I’ve started bothers me less than I want to admit, or I’d have posted this already.

Can I just blame it on 2020? I think I’ll just blame it on 2020.

😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁😁

At any rate, 2021 hasn’t seemed a whole lot better yet, but I’m holding out hope. I mean, things HAVE to get better, right?

Of course they do.

Anyway, I know I’m a little late to the party on this one, but I finally got around to watching this video of Amanda Gorman reading “The Hill We Climb” at President Biden’s inauguration last week, and it gave me chills. This is the sort of writing I aspire to produce: writing that speaks to people, that says something important about who we are and who we want to be. If you haven’t yet seen this reading, do yourself a favor and check it out.

And now, because it’s my birthday and I have the house to myself, I’m going to go and read more poems (and maybe revise a few of my own). Here’s to accomplishing more goals in 2021!

(c) 2021. All rights reserved.

Magic nostalgia time

I’ve been working on a poem lately about how different this summer was compared to summers past. And as I was pondering exactly what I was trying to get at with my poem, this came to me:

Summer is a magic time, full of nostalgia for the bygone days of my youth. But as summer fades inevitably into fall, I find myself growing wistful, for summer lasts but a short time, and it seems to grow shorter with each passing year.

Covid time has transformed ordinary seasonal longing for carefree summer fun into a yearning of the acutest kind; I crave a true return to normal life, the kind that will not be possible for some time. With fall fading fast into winter and case counts rapidly rising, it’s hard to hang onto hope.

I wish I could cast all my doubts and fears aside as easily as if I were tossing an anchor over the starboard bow; I wish I could pluck hope from the lake as easily as master anglers pull fish from the deep; I wish I could read the world’s future in my cards.

But since I can’t do any of that, I’ll keep writing about it all instead.

(c) 2020. All rights reserved.

Writer’s life

I’ve been working on revising a novel lately, and these made me laugh:

I relate to that first one so, so much, and I’m pretty sure this entire series falls squarely into category 3 (aka a bit feral still). But I also kinda relate to the second one, because I enjoy handwriting my drafts (and usually, my revisions), and I write mainly in cursive. While I have enough practice at cursive (and handwriting things in general) that I can write both quickly and legibly in both cursive and print, sometimes it’s easy to mistake one letter for another when glancing quickly at something. πŸ€¦β€β™€οΈπŸ€·β€β™€οΈ

Then again, I haven’t summoned lemons when I meant to summon demons, so there’s that… πŸ˜‚

(c) 2020. All rights reserved.

Revisiting the past

Another unfinished bit that shows promise:

He saw her from across the crowded restaurant; a forgotten melody tinkled softly in the background. But it had been too long; their ship had sailed a long time ago, with him on board and her crying on the shore.

Or had it?

Someone always asks what the one thing is that you’d do over again if given the chance, and people always seemed to answer differently each time they were asked. One day, they’d have tried out for their high school play, or stayed in the dorms when they left for college, or had more fun in school. But for Rian Baley, the answer was always the same: he’d have stayed in Park East instead of running.

He was back now, of course. And he hoped that this time, things would be different. But like his father always said, Wish in one hand, shit in the other, and see which one fills up faster. Hope wouldn’t get him very far. Especially not after the way he left.

It’s kinda fun to reread some of the things I haven’t finished, especially when I love the characters so much (or at least love playing with them). Do you ever reread your old work?

(c) 2020. All rights reserved.

Raindrops keep fallin’ on my head

This is something I’ve been fiddling with a bit this weekend:

The steady ratta-tat ratta-tat ratta-ratta-ratta-tat of autumn rain on my roof, on my windows, in my downspout, is almost hypnotic. If it weren’t just above freezing, I could almost mistake it for a summer storm. Lightning flashes nearby; thunder ripples, then cracks, in the distance. The wind begins to howl as it whips through the trees, littering my yard with cornstalks from the neighboring fields.

The drive-in scene fromΒ Twister flits through the movie screen in my mind. I pull the blanket a little closer.

It’s not finished, but it has promise, like the sky after a storm.

(c) 2020. All rights reserved.

Say something, anything…

*taps mic*

Is this thing on?

Is anyone still listening?

As I glanced through my previous posts, I realized that it’s been three months since I last popped in, way back on the inaugural Pepper Day (check out some more recent entries here, and click here for an excellent earworm). Three whole months! It’s crazy how time flies, and the past few months have been a whirlwind as I’ve struggled to get back into something resembling a normal routine.

I’ve been writing a lot lately, though I haven’t been doing it here. I’ve been working on expanding and revising a novel, and it’s taken so much of my mental energy. I’ve also been trying to get back into keeping a diary. I did really well with it when I wasn’t working, but it’s been a struggle to keep up with it now that I’m working again. There are so many things I want to get done each day, and not nearly enough time in the day to squeeze them all in.

But today I wrote a wedding, and it was wonderful. And with any luck, tomorrow I’ll get to write a honeymoon. It’s wonderfully gloomy tonight, full of thunder and lightning and inspiration, although maybe not for honeymoons. It feels good to be creating again.

It feels good to be living again.

How about you? What is life like where you’re at?

(c) 2020. All rights reserved.