Sunday, April 29, 2012

A Word In The Hand


Sometimes, the best things are written when you have nothing to write about.  When your fingers ache, but nothing comes.  So you just move them.  Let it go, the walls and barricades.  Imagine the way your brain sits inside your skull.  Imagine that you can move it.  Move it with your mind.  Just a little.  Maybe a little push with a finger.  Trying to loosen a word.  Any word.  Push here, push there, until a word pops out. 

Needling.  It's been on my mind for half an hour.  That word.  Needling.  But it doesn't mean what I want it to mean.  It can be a verb.  A generic thing you do with a needle.  Or it can be what someone does as he squeezes himself between your "not" and "now."  Among other things.  Needling.  It starts as a want, the seed.  It grows into a need.  But in between, it's a needling.  So many of them are planted.  Not all of them mine.  Yet I am the little garden, the place for planting, the nursery- warm and soft- to grow them tall.  The sun teases them.  My breath waters them.  And when they've grown big and strong, they are plucked, leaving eensy weensy holes for another want to germinate. Needling. 

Sacrosanct.  My favorite running hill.  I run up lots of hills.  Steep hills.  Gradual ones.  Ones so slight you can only see them against their relative periphery.  But my favorite running hill.  That one.  I only run down.  Never up.  I keep it pure.  I keep it perfect.  For running down only.  A perfect little cul-de-sac juts out in its middle.  A perfect cul-de-sac waits at its end.  And from the top, to its juicy middle, to its swirly end, I smile.  Breathe.  Feel.  Move.  An afterglow lingers.  It starts just below my skin and radiates in loops around me, as though it is dancing in a magnetosphere all my own.  My hill.  For down-running only.  Sacrosanct. 

Pressor.  Often used by doctors to indicate a course of therapy to increase a patient's blood pressure.  Usually a medication, or a combination of them, combined with a normal saline IV, and sometimes also including respiratory support.  Low blood pressure usually is not a cause for concern in most people.  Mine has always run low, 80s over 40s low, very, very low.  But it is normal for me.  Patients who require pressor support, more often than not, are dying.  Perhaps from shock or sepsis, heart attack, stroke, cancer.  But I have never known it to be used for a broken heart of the self, the spirit, the soul.  What would be a pressor for a breaking heart?  Surely just one smile is a band-aid.  A quick shot of adrenaline, nothing more.  But perhaps a gift.  A string tied on a finger.  A flower in your hair.   To remind you of a promise.  The promise of a smile every day for forever.  Yes.  That might be a brilliant pressor.

Manganese.  Mn.  Number 25.  A word that floats upon my magnetosphere at times.  A wicked thing.  Without it, our buildings would crumble.  Bridges wilting into the river.  Our moving things would flake away on brittle frames and axles.  Carnegie would have been just another fool with an office.  Tools, weapons, machines would crumble between our fingers.  An alloy.  Toughness.  Strength.  Standing against wind and rain.  Against time and use.  Would that we all had a bit inside us.  In our bones.  Our noggins.  Our hearts.  Knock me, push me, try to break me.  I'll never founder or fall.  Manganese. 

Silly words.  The sturm and drang in a crashing wave.  Eyes locked in syndyasmian dreams.  Toes tipping on an old hardwood floor.  Legs brushing under a blanket.  A mother's finger pointing toward Venus; her child's smile as he takes his first tenuous steps into understanding. 

Silly words.
________________________________________________________________________________

Saturday, April 28, 2012

In The Produce Aisle


Oh, please.  My lovely boy. 
Whom I birthed sixteen years ago. 
So brilliant and beautiful,
your words shine and shiver like a ruby in a tide pool.
BUT DO YOU EVER SHUT UP?

I know that face, when she’s had enough
and just wishes I’d give her peace.
But I hope she knows
this venting of thought, word, and soul
makes me love her the more.

How she does it, I’ll never understand,
that mother there with her boy
in the produce aisle.
I’ve not heard him pause for breath once,
yet she stands ready,
answer and ear undaunted.

________________________________________________________________________________

Your task, should you choose to accept, is to take a scene that involves (or affects) at least three people. You should then write this scene from the point of view of three of the characters, using 33 words for each character.

________________________________________________________________________________

Friday, April 27, 2012

My Son Saw A Man Die Yesterday


He was at a friend's house down the street, sitting on his back deck talking.  They heard the crash but didn't think much of it until they heard the sirens and saw the lights.  Ran around to the front yard and saw the man sprawled onto the street.  The blood trail began several feet behind him.  Paramedics were already tending to him, suctioning blood from his mouth, trying to secure an airway.

My son distinctly saw blood coming from his eyes and nose and mouth and ears.  He was that close.

The man was broken all over.  The ATV he was riding was halfway up a tree.

My son saw him take his last few breaths.

He's been talking about it a lot.  He is very, very much like his momma.  Easily capable of compartmentalizing such a horrific thing into a very specific place in his brain.

He is also a 17-year-old boy.  He says that part of him feels guilty for thinking it was a cool thing to see.  I assured him that I totally get it, and that he is normal.

He is also a writer.  And as he tells this story, his eyes light up like only a writer's would.  And he says, "In part of my brain, all I can think about is how much I can get from this.  How this will affect my writing. (He writes sci-fi, crime dramas, war dramas)  How awesome is my writing going to be after having actually seen someone die?!"

My husband has been talking to him a lot.  Making sure he is okay.  Telling him that if he needs help sorting it out, if he needs to talk, that we are here for him.   My husband has been in the Army for 18 years.  Combat tours to Iraq and Afghanistan.  He knows death.  Up close.  Of friend and foe.

Both of my sons are amazingly grounded young men.  They have a self-awareness, an understanding of life and their place in it that is so rare in teenagers.  They are not afraid to talk about feelings.  But my oldest has such an incredible vocabulary, such that he is able to talk about himself and all of those feelings, lay it all out on the table, really examine and dissect himself, with unimaginable skill. 

He said, "seeing something like that changes you.  It's changed me, no doubt about it."

He told us that he feels a bit more humbled by the fragility of life and how small we actually are.

The man was apparently not wearing a helmet, was speeding and reckless, and at the time that he crashed, he was actually reaching to catch his hat that was being blown off by the wind.   My son found it bit upsetting to admit this information made him feel less sympathy for the man.  Or, as he put it, "My give-a-crap meter kinda went down a little." Although, he says that if it had been someone he loved, then those things would not have mattered. 

These are all concepts he has the voice and the cognition to express to his father and me in words, and without prompting. 

Jake is the kind of kid who you cannot wait to see what he is going to do with the world once he has it by the tail.  You want to give him the keys to the kingdom just so you can sit back and watch. 
Maybe even follow him around so you can learn and take notes.

I see a lot of myself in him.  I see a lot of his dad in him.  But most of him is pure Jake.

I see a lot of myself in my youngest son, as well.  His dad's silent indignation.  But again, he is pure Andrew through and through.  His brilliance is the quiet kind.  He speaks when his words are perfect on his tongue, and only when his words will matter.  When he speaks, you sit up tall and listen, because he doesn't do it very often, and when he does, it will matter.  Though I am afraid that if he'd been the one to see such a sight, it would have affected him much differently.  He cried when his parakeet died.  Last year.  He's 15. 

I am humbled by both of them.  Every day.  And if I never make another mark on this planet with my name on it, it gives me more than enough gratitude to know that I made them. 

Jake went back today to look at the blood stain that still lingers on the asphalt in front of his friend's house.  He said, "I stood there, mom.  Just stood there.  Staring at this man's life spilled on the road.  And all I could do was breathe.  And be grateful I still could."

My son saw a man die yesterday. 

And I am okay with that.

________________________________________________________________________________

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Timekeeper

Grandpa’s clock
is stuck at 9:02.
Such a brave little thing
to stand against dawn.
Hands sure,
copper fingers brushing
the tip of dusk.
The will of time a whistle-
a song it will not sing.
An arcane verse wrapped upon a gear
is the story of 9:01.
Perchance it fancied love
in a farthingale,
waiting with her parasol,
ever biding hours
counting down to 9:03.
Yet the sundial turns its nose;
The hourglass, its head;
The metronome perpetuates
and bristles at the thought.
Just a withered piece of time-
springs and pulleys
punched their timecards ages gone.
A grayed and hoary chap-
playing bridge each Sunday morning
on the porch with pendulum-
war tales be the currency of the day.
Grandpa’s clock
perhaps not stuck,
but waiting, turned to stone.
Its legend set upon a nail
standing watch for a noble key
to set it lithe on a dragon’s back
to rage through frost and fog.
To turn its heart
entwined with breath,
and a kiss to break the spell.
________________________________________________________________________________

________________________________________________________________________________

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

100 Word Song- Feral Friend

The breath on her ear she'd felt before.  A distinct flavor.  A warmth of its own. The words swirled in shapes she'd painted before.  But not ones she thought she’d paint again.  The want steadied, braced itself on a crutch.  Taunted fire stifled with a finger on pursed lips.  To tame it on a whole note is a tease she’d never pass.  To lasso round the storm, absurd.  To stoke the coals to a lackluster glow, futile.  The smell, breath, flavor, warmth, words but a feral friend.   All or none.  Whole or naught.  For savages don’t sip tea with royals.
________________________________________________________________________________
 
Playing Lance's game when I should be working.  The story of my life.  The 100 Word Song this week was Rolling Stones- Waiting On A Friend.  
 


________________________________________________________________________________

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

will-o'-the-wisp


He sat in the rain
on a many-ringed stump.
I watched as he wrote his name.
His finger pen dripped
with ink from his brow,
making valleys
cross, dotting, rays.
“Call me this,” he asked.
Then I saw what he wrote.
His name, in the rain, was the same.


He was sitting on a park bench,
reading a newspaper found
in the trash where he looked
for the gold broken men cast away.
His finger pen circled
a pale yellow shine
and he smiled
warm, slight, brushed aglow.
“Listen here,” he said.
So I gave him my ear.
His eyes, as he read, closed instead.


He flies for a time
in and out of my sight,
whether dreamwalking days
or at night.
His finger pen traces
a secret locked tight
and he whispers
gold, inked, words
“Don’t forget,” he winked.
And I knew he would stay
on the stump, in my eyes, at sunrise.
________________________________________________________________________________

This was written for the Studio 30+ prompt "He was sitting on a park bench reading a newspaper."
It is also my first time linking up with dVerse Poet's Pub on Open Link Night.  I'm super excited to have found a "poets only" linky thingy!  Now.  Go ahead.  Tear me to shreds.  I can take it. 
________________________________________________________________________________

Monday, April 23, 2012

Rungasm

Something really screwed up happened to me today.  This morning, actually.  While I was running.  Just a short run.  I'd just hit mile 4 and was on the way back home.

I'm not really sure how to even explain it except to just say it.

Ugh.

I started crying.

WHAT.  THE.  FUCK.

It was right in front of the other homeschooling family's house.  They are the weird religious kind.  They think we're the weird slacker kind.  We totally are.  But that's beside the point.  Actually, all of that is beside the point.

Yeah.  I tried to stop.  Let me see if I can explain.  It was spontaneous and intrinsic.  Native.  Primitive.  What else do I say?   Hmm.  There are only 3 other times in my whole life that I remember crying like that.

Time #1 was April 30, 1994.  I was 17 years old.  I was supposed to be getting married.  And I had no idea what finger the wedding ring was supposed to go on.  Right in the middle of the ceremony.  Yeah.  Seriously.  I think I actually said "Mommy!" Which made everyone laugh.... and made me cry harder.  But it was not sad.  It was sort of like.... elevated.

I'm not doing a good job explaining this, am I?

Time #2.  I was in a wheelchair looking into an incubator which held my 2-pound 13-ounce son who had an IV in his forehead and a blood pressure cuff on his arm that was so small, it fit on my thumb.  But I wasn't sad that day, either.  I was.... enchanted.

Time #3.  I was lying on a bed in an OR with my stomach slit from hip to hip, my OB's arms elbow-deep in my guts, and begging my husband to divert my attention away from the fact that I could see the entire surgery taking place in the reflection of the OR lights on the ceiling.  I was convinced that if I actually saw my own uterus or intestines or blood or fascia, I would probably vomit.  And I was scared that if I vomited while my stomach was gaping open, all of my guts would fly out.  Seriously.  I really thought that.  I'm not trying to be funny.  So anyway.  I'm trying not to look, right?  My husband is telling me the "Whoooooo's gonna stay with me this looooong, looooong lonesome night?" ghost story his Mammaw used to tell him when he was a little boy.  And all of a sudden, I hear this rabid cat squeal coming from my nether regions.  Well, a momma just knows when that rabid cat squeal is coming from half of her DNA.   So there came the ridiculous tears.  And then my husband shows me this little nasty blob of baby that was producing said squeal.  He was huge.  He had these gigantic fat fingers poking out over the top of his blanket.  A head full of black hair.   And I said, "Nooooo!! I don't have fat babies!  I only have 2-pound, 13-ounce babies!  Where the hell did that thing come from??!!"  Apparently, it was really mine.   But even these were not tears of sadness, but rather.... elation. 

So.

Ahem....

That is the way I cried this morning.  Mile #4.  Right in front of the weird family's house.  There was snot and sniffling involved.  And then I came home and Googled "crying while running."  Thankfully, I am not the only one this has happened to.

My husband says it was endorphin overload. 

I say it was a Rungasm.

I am sure I just took a nosedive into the mosh pit of Psychotown, but there ya go.

Feel free to poke me and laugh.  I deserve it.

________________________________________________________________________________

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Prosy Mumbling

My story is changing.  I can feel it.  My main character is changing.  Not "maturing" or growing in response to lesson or moral silliness.  But what she stands for in the story is changing.  The point of her existence.  Can you set yourself apart from your characters?  Or are they all reflections of different parts of you?  Can you dislike one of your characters yet still see the benefit of them in your story?  Or have you come to dislike a character so much that you do cruel things to them just so that you can laugh, like poke them in the eyes with a stick?

Have you come to care about a character so much that it is difficult for you to hurt them, even though the story calls for it?

Hmm.  My mind has been busy torquing of late.  Tightening.  Points meeting points.  Characters originating from a place that matters, ending at a point where another begins.




I steer clear of female machinations.   Such a convoluted, ridiculous industry.  Female empowerment.  'Anything you can do, I can do better.'  You know what happens when we travel that road?  This. 







Women are women for a reason.  Because the natural world requires us for 50% of human reproduction.  And men are men for the same reason.  We are different.  We think differently.  We look different.  We approach things differently.  We have different purposes.  And one gender will always have capabilities that the other does not.   There is nothing politically incorrect about that.  It is just natural fact. 

But it doesn't mean that a female, when cornered, cannot plunge a screwdriver into the base of someone's skull without pause.  It does not mean that a woman is incapable of purposely disposing of a weaker human in a survival situation because that human's weakness has become a threat to the lives of the group as a whole.  It does not mean that a woman is incapable of making the very inhuman, caustic, and primal decision to lay aside her own domestication in order to save her life.

But would readers see her as a hero?  An antihero?  A threat to the reader's sensibilities and therefore must be discounted?  Or would they be insulted that the author has attempted to push this unrealistic, disgusting female anti-archetype onto their morally righteous consciousness?

Men are not bad guys.  Women are not damsels in distress.   But the alternative is not a middle ground or the forcing of unnatural gender neutrality.  The alternative is a transcendent state where their strengths and weaknesses create an entirely new and different symbiont zeitgeist.

Not idealism.  Just a different reality. 

Or am I just totally full of donkey shit?   That's a serious question, by the way. 




________________________________________________________________________________

Thursday, April 19, 2012

You Deserve Better


I read an article today.

http://bekindrewrite.com/2012/05/18/47-words-and-phrases-that-slow-...

I winced.  Almost disgusted.  The piece means well, I am sure.  Pressure-washing the adjectives and adverbs, scrubbing redundancy, cleaning sentences to evoke more meaning and less misunderstanding.  Absolutely.  But encouraging sterility of imagination and the razing of entire rainforests of words simply to tell the story in the easiest and quickest way possible?

That is scary.  Sad.  And disheartening.  Our beautiful language and our beautiful minds are being cast out of the roller coasters in favor of the merry-go-round.

Is this what we have been reduced to?  Are these the confines in which storytellers must now be bound? I can appreciate technical writers.  Magazine-style articles.  Journalists.  As a medical editor, I am also bound by a style guide.  My husband is bound by an entirely different style guide as he writes for the military community.  I can appreciate these niches.

But storytellers?  Word-dancing raconteurs?  Weavers of shine and magic, creators of a world in which readers can lose themselves completely?

Writing is an art.  The spinning of the story, the brush.  To tickle a fancy on a syllable requires knowledge of the human mind and heart.  Knowing, as though you were born with a seventh sense, the perfect word, with the consonants and vowels in just the right spot, drawing your reader gently behind you as you soften their synapses with a graceful S or W at the perfect time.  Jerking them in a clonic fit as you bite on just the right crushing K or X.

It is a ride.  From the first word to the last, my stories are a ride.  Strap yourself down.  Buckle yourself in, sweet lovelies, and be prepared to scream on the downhills of a sliced and gushing femoral artery.  Let yourself sway upon a cloud with the memory of collecting a Radio Flyer full of black-eyed susans with grandma.  Be ready to dance to my beat.  Rise up, or read something else.
Is this pretension?  I don't condescend.  Not to my readers.  Never.  I grab their hand and let them fly with me.  I dare them to be better.  To allow their imagination to fold itself in a prism and let my words be the light which throws dazzling color in every corner of their whole self.

I will not follow the silly rules of humans.  I will never write to the lowest common denominator.  And I will never assume my species is as droll and dead as the writer of this article implies.

I shall take my sentences fragments and beg you to eat them.  I will lay my metaphors at your feet and ask that you squish them with your toes.  Wrap yourself in a conflict you can touch and smell and get in a gritty bar fight with.  Cover yourself in a vignette whose peaches you can taste right at the tip of your tongue.

Embrace your language.  Love your words, the way they sound and feel.  Be cognizant of every rule you break, every period, every comma, every invented word.  Realize that breaking those rules is just as powerful a tool as the size of your vocabulary. Realize that the human mind settles so much deeper into the syncopation of storydancing-  And that is the time when losing yourself begins.

I'll never eat the stale potato chips of threadbare prose when there is key lime pie to be had.  Absolutely.  Unacceptable.

You see, I am a storyteller.  I am a writer.  I am an artist.  What I do is art in every sense of the word.  It gives color to a bland world of easily palpable paragraphs and independent clauses.

Slow your reader down! Please! Make them stop and see the world in all of its filth and joy.

Oh, yes. A storyteller, indeed.  I tell stories to those who want to live them.  I give life to fantasies spinning wheels in a dream.

I refuse to write down to you, sweet reader.  You deserve better.
________________________________________________________________________________

Head Closet

Ever found stuff you've written and don't remember writing it?  Whether you found it stuffed in couch cushions or the floorboard of your car or an errant file in some forgotten folder on your computer.  And then, even as you read it, you still don't remember writing it.  As a matter of fact, you aren't even 100% sure you wrote it, although you're 100% sure you did.  And not only that, but you still have no clue what it's about. 

Anyway.  I'm sure I am probably the only human on Earth who loved the movie Return To Oz.  The whole thing was just bitchin', with Dorothy in the psych ward, the wheelers, the super badass smokin' hot Fairuza Balk, and Mombi with her head closet.  Super fucking cool, man.  Just.  Cool.  I know, I'm probably the only human on Earth who loves Fairuza Balk, too.  I always have, though.  Seriously. 

I found this the other day.  Checked the time/date thingy stuff on the file and it says Dec 30, 2011.  I  have no clue what the fuck it is about, but it made me think of Mombi. 


Rise inside
Lift the head she chose today
Replace her baubles and shine
Screw it down
Snap is tight
Smile for the camera,
my little glass angel.
Cover your shame
Your cogwheels and gears.
Touch him slow
Soft voice, easy eyes
Keep your sparklers unlit
Today’s head carries vague whisps
Of her god in the box

________________________________________________________________________________

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

reconnoître

My husband told me the other day that I sometimes write like a "broken woman."

If you've ever spent any time reading my other blog, or spent any time with me in person, and having read this blog, you will probably see that there is a bit of duality.  Oh, hell.  It's probably more of a septality.... or maybe even an octality.... and all of it is me.  In one way or another, all day long.  There are people who only know one side of me.  There are a few of those people who have been in the wrong place at the wrong time and have seen glimpses of another side, but only a flash, before I reel it back in.  And then there are those who've seen it all.  All my dirtiness, all my hypocrisy, all of it.

I do lots of dumb shit.  I say lots of dumb shit.  I laugh at the wrong things.  I don't laugh at things that were meant to be funny.   I use self-deprecation to make people laugh because it's foolproof and takes the least effort. 

I have unreachable expectations of myself.  And very, very few expectations of others.

I cling to routines and familiarity like a security blanket.   I spit and fight and beg when I have to let them go.  And then, like flipping a light switch, I forget they ever existed.

I have had some fucked up shit happen to me.  I have been the fucked up shit that happened to someone else.

I have had some amazing things happen to me.   Though I am not quite sure I have ever been anyone else's amazing thing.

I asked him if by "broken woman" he meant that I made myself sound like a victim.  Because aside from "enliven" and "handsome" and "menstruation" and "guffaw," the word "victim" is right up there as one of my least favorite words.

He said no.

And drawing on the knowledge that men usually say exactly what they mean, I can then assume that he probably meant that I write on this blog with a voice that gives the impression that I am mentally or psychologically broken. 

Aren't we all in some way?

But I think his point goes a bit deeper than that.  I think the "brokenness" for him comes from the fact that as a person, in person, at home, with him and my boys, for the most part, my personality is a bit more like the me who writes on Pleasantly Demented.  I laugh a lot.  Joke around a lot.  I am loud and obnoxious.  I have a filthy mouth and a filthy mind.  I am uncouth and so unimaginably politically incorrect that the ACLU would probably try to sue me just for breathing.  I have very, very few personal boundaries and even those rarely get used. 

So I guess for him to read my writing here, not only the topics, but also my voice, it's something he isn't used to.  Because I write much deeper than I speak, with an emotion that comes so much easier through my fingers than out of my mouth.  And, well, because I am a writer, period.  That is what we do.

I love telling stories.  I have a lot of them to tell. 

And, as a writer, if you aren't exploiting yourself in some way for the sake of a story, you're doing it wrong.

I wouldn't say I am a broken woman.  I'm just really fucking good at what I do.

Or something like that.


________________________________________________________________________________

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Naked Raconteur Beguiled

Writing a novel feels like filling an ocean one drop at a time.  Truly, it does.  I guess you could say I actually started with true intention around the beginning of January.  I'm halfway through chapter 2.  Yeah.  Most of the story I already know.  I've already written the last few paragraphs.  I know most of the plot twists and some of the Easter eggs I'm hiding.   But telling the story, for me at least, is like sculpting some brand new masterpiece for every single paragraph.  I'm a perfectionist.  I know I am just supposed to let go and write.  I know I need to just take off all my clothes and pop some stream of consciousness until I fall asleep.  I should do that.  I agonize over almost every word.  I have even been known to sit for 20 minutes waffling over "a" versus "the."  What the hell?  I get paranoid that I am repeating words, especially when I get a kickass one stuck in my head.  I get paranoid that I am rambling.  I get paranoid that I am allowing my main character to ruminate too much instead of barreling through some fast-paced action.  Then I get paranoid that my main character isn't showing enough emotion or the right emotion.  I am thoroughly concerned that my main "bad guy" isn't bad enough, horrible enough, scary and cruel and sociopathic enough.  Or perhaps it's too much, making the story unrealistic.  Oh shit.  The one thing I do know is that I am passionate about the story.  I have had many story lines in my head over the years.  None of them got very far until I lost the passion and found that I no longer even cared about my main character.  With this story, I am completely invested.  The story is there.  Somewhere.  It's percolating.  I feel it.

I've tried distracting myself every once in a while.  Writing other things.  I thought it's what I needed.  Wrong.  Worst thing anyone can do.

I've been reading autobiographies of people who have gone through a similar circumstance as my main character.  I call it research, but I really think it's just another excuse for a distraction.  Now, I am paranoid that I am going to internalize it too much and, unconsciously, just retell their story.   Matter of fact, that is exactly why James Ellroy doesn't read.  I hear all the time, writers who say that you must read in order to write.  I always wondered about that.  I read for fun.  But I have always been concerned about the internalization and regurgitation problem.  When I read that about James Ellroy, it made total sense to me.  He also loves sentence fragments almost as much as I do. 

My writing style is very different.  Very different.  It is almost so unique to me that people can recognize it even without my name attached to it.  And I worry that it won't be accepted because it is so different.  Yet, I refuse to change it.  It is mine.  It makes sense to me.  It speaks the way I want it to, the way it sounds in my head.  I don't just want to tell the story, I want to sing it.  I want to paint it.  I want to push it at the reader, pour it on top of him, trap him in my mind until the last page.  Not many people write like that anymore.  The emphasis is on getting the story out, and writing down to the least common denominator so that it can be read and understood by a much bigger portion of the population.  I refuse to write down to anyone.  The delivery is just as much of an experience as the story itself.  I want the reader to feel smarter for having read my story.

I've never been one to take instruction gracefully.  But I have actually been subjecting myself to "how to" articles of late.  The Weekend Novelist- perfect little info bites for my flickering attention span.  I've been on Red Room, and a pretty funny article I read today The Ultimate Guide To Writing Better Than You Normally Do.   Sometimes, I read new and useful information.  Other times, I find that the techniques and advice I read simply puts a technical name to things I have done all along but didn't realize they were a "thing." 

Anyway.  I don't know what my point of this post was.  I have an awesome BFF and my son who have been tolerating my "read this and see if it sounds okay" emails with so much grace.  And I am eternally grateful for their ability to calmly read my bullshit without running away and changing their names.   My poor son.  Every time I get lexicologically constipated, I say, "Hey, Jake.  What should happen next??"  And 9 times out of 10, he busts out with some mind-blowing scene that I never would have thought of.  I am starting to feel as though I am just his ghostwriter.

The Word file stays open perpetually at the bottom of my screen.  I'll think of a great sentence.  Write a sentence.  Or fragment.  Get up and do something else.  I'll write something for a Trifecta or Write on Edge or Studio 30+ prompt.  I'll write something for no other reason at all but that it was begging to be written.  Then I'll write another sentence.  Minimize.  Watch a documentary called "Jesus Camp" about evangelical kids speaking in tongues (one of the most disturbingly exploitative things I've seen in a long time, by the way).  Write a sentence.  Minimize.  Read an article on the theories of the origin of the moon.  Write a sentence.  Minimize.  Scientists have proven through studies on the titanium found on both the Earth and the Moon that the Moon came from Earth alone, by the way.  No more 3rd planet collision theory.  Strange.  They're still working out the logistics of all that.  Interesting.

Distractions.

I think I am going to take my laptop and go hide in the crawlspace of my house for a while.  See what creeps up.  Creepy crawlies and whatnot.  Hot and dusty.  The sound of water running through the pipes.

Perhaps. 



________________________________________________________________________________

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Kar ō shi

To the wayworn,
Be still.
It creeps up on you and into your bones.
Settles heavy on your skin.
The force of gravity increases tenfold,
and the weight of some alien world begs for your affection. 
Ruminations become corporeal,
crow's feet tiptoe naughty in the dark.
The house falls silent, the plush beneath you soft,
yet your cognizance rests on lost intentions,
lest your memory march to meet the light of sworn fealty.
You vowed and forgot.
Promises broken.
Wished but locked it away.
In the hour before tomorrow,
drink.
Let it wash the wrong down smooth.
And again, with hands to heart,
eyes resting in the wake of an encore
pound your fence posts deep,
plant your Sharon rose to hide the anthills seething
know your light will bring the day
over and over
again.



________________________________________________________________________________

Monday, April 9, 2012

The Writer's Lush All-Nighter

It was a dark and stormy night.
Wind, a dying shell of a man,
held bitter behind the prose.
New moon, shadow smile,
down, down, down among the lot.
Noise, a luxe alluvium
fell from dusk-dwelling, secret things.

There was monkeyshine afoot,
Leaping thumb to thumb.
A rapt reflection in the bones
of my pretzel-bending treacle-
candy melting down my chin
with a slow-sipping flute of rhine.

I laughed to spite the spiters,
Dancing sine-to-qua-to-non,
when a notion popped my cherry knot
and time then spoke for me.
He said,
“Go, and shake the fringe.
Make a mess with cachinnations!”

I then slipped my favorite tapping shoes
Upon my tapping toes,
twirled my ouroboros palindrome
and flew to meet my maker.

Drifting lithe upon my shoulder,
I watched her as she watched me
Drifting lithe upon the shoulder
Of the me
just watching her.

________________________________________________________________________________


Studio 30+ weekly prompt- The classic opener, "It was a dark and stormy night."  

________________________________________________________________________________

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Bad Mommy

Being a rather young mother of older teenage boys can get a bit….

hmmm….

….awkward.

Especially when your older teenage sons have…

hmmm….

….older teenage friends.

You see, I’m a rather….

hmmm….

…..different kind of momma.

Aside from retirement investments, there is nothing about me that remotely suggests I’m old enough to have 15 or 17-year-old young men. I’m the size of an 8 year old. With the fashion sense of a 13-year-old, the hair of a 5-year-old terrified of hair brushes, and the libido of an 18-year-old boy.

Which is why I find it rather…..

interesting...

...when little Devon rings my doorbell looking for Jake.

Little Devon was 5 when we moved in.

Little Devon is now 17 and built like a linebacker. With his jet black hair and Filipino complexion.

Little Devon.

Indeed.

I avert my eyes and pray my cacophony of pheromones doesn’t blast him clear off my front porch.

Then there is sweet Jacob. Jacob plays drums. He’s 20 and waiting for his Air Force basic training to start. Jacob rings my doorbell, too. Runs upstairs with my Jake to play Led Zeppelin and Green Day. Sometimes, sweet Jacob comes over with his shirt off. Five o’clock shadow. Beach bum kinda shorts and flip-flops. Axe soap and body spray wafting through my front door. I cross my fingers and hope I don’t look like a cougar at a meat market.

I was born to be the mother of boys. I know them. I enjoy things they enjoy and see the world through their eyes. I love loud, angry music. I appreciate a smoking hot female body when I see one. I catch and play with spiders, insects, and worms. I laugh at the word “vagina” and love a great “yo momma” joke.

But oh, sweet pubescent Jesus! I really wish someone had told me that those little boys ringing my doorbell and eating my cookies would one day turn into eye candy melting on my front porch.
________________________________________________________________________________

Trifextra Week Eleven:

The challenge is to write a response that is between 33 and 333 words long and uses the words listed below.  Use the words however you wish, but make sure that all three appear in your response.  Oh, and they must appear in order.
  1. cacophony
  2. soap
  3. insects

________________________________________________________________________________

Monday, April 2, 2012

Pimp Momma

The amazing imagination behind the blog Spawns Of My Imagination just so happens to be the spawn of my libidinous womanhood, my product of conception, my progeny, my firstborn child, my filthy little homeschooled heathen, my wittle baby boy, Jake. 

He's recently started participating in prompts over at Trifecta and Write on Edge. 

He also has an ongoing series he is writing about war, fatherhood, love, and bravery entitled Rogue Valor. 

He's a brilliant writer. 

Now go read his blog and leave comments. 

Go read his fucking blog and leave comments. 

Thank you. 

________________________________________________________________________________