Monday, May 31, 2004

tiptoe thru rain drops.

Well it IS raining today.

I've been pondering as I often do. I spend way too much time on it occasionally.
But nevertheless, here is what I'm wondering today....How do you find a fine balance between the need to seek and/or create some kind of beauty in your life and the feeling that you should give some of your time and energy to actively making the world a better place. I realize there are some very subjective statements there but I think for the purpose of argument I can leave them. I mean, really. How do you figure this stuff out?

I know intrinsically that creation and an appreciation of creation keeps the gears oiled. But since we seem to be living in such a volatile time, exacerbated by the widening gap between the "haves" and the "have nots" it seems important to work towards peace and quality of life. I am not entirely sure how to do this. I try to take some action online politically when an opportunity presents itself, I try to speak up, clearly and honestly when narrow mindedness is blatant in my midst. I genuinely try to count my blessings, which sometimes has the undesirable effect of reminding me how little some folks have but...I still try. I genuinely make an effort to be a good human being. Its not routinely easy. I try never to lie. It keeps life simpler. I don't have very good short term memory so if I were to lie in layers or anything I would soon get caught in my own web.

But I seem to digress. Maybe the short question here is this: is it fair or correct or appropriate to plan to just take all your time to wrestle beauty from pathos? Is it practical to spend my time in a selfish quest to create stuff? Wether its writing or collage or a quest for an elusive personal aesthetic? How will that promote goodwill towards humanity? How will it slow global warming? How will it end hunger? How will it patch the hole in the ozone layer? How will it improve our education system? How will it stop the unnecessary slaughter of wildlife? How will it rescue our oceans? I could go on and on and on? I think I really need an answer to this...even if its not the "right" answer.

Sunday, May 16, 2004


I am "In Praise of Slow". The title of a book talked about on NPR the other day. I was comfortable being slow today. Too often I am distracted, rushed, my attention splintered.

I am learning, paying attention to my clear thoughts.

It has been particularly hectic and busy lately. It has been both pleasurable and maddening. I am trying to decipher what is pleasurable and fulfilling from the blur. I need to choose how to spend my time and energy rather than falling into an activity.

I've been feeling like I lack faith. Well, that's not right, I lack a vehicle, a ritual to connect me with the powers larger than myself. I have isolated myself. I have not prayed for ages becasue I have lost access to the words.
As I struggle to carve pockets of time to write I realized that was the vacuum. Writing is my relgion and I had discarded it. I am unable to subscribe to an organized religion, an authoritarian system of belief. Writing is my connection to the universe. It is the umbilical cord tethering me to everything. I haven't been tapping it. And my equilibrium has tangibly suffered.

I get overwhlemed by the multiple voices clamoring for attention. Mostly they are versions of my voice telling me all thats wrong and what I could/should be doing instead of what I'm doing. A self flagellating merry go round. I am certain that giving my writing an open page will open my heart.

Friday, May 07, 2004

a work in progress

I started throwing images on paper to deal with some's what's
working itself out.

The blunt ache
of raising a son
Whose father
abandoned him
seeking gold and Nirvana
of the needle
the snort
the comfort of hops.
We ride a roller coaster
Subtle undulations
of hormones
the mistrust of age.
There are moments
each day
my heart is delicately
sliced open
lemon juice
dripped dripped
into the wounds.

I forage
thru my experiences
to find a salve
a reckoning
a bread crumb trail
of reasoning.
I implore
the forces larger
than myself
for strength
for tenderness
for the right words.

some stuff

I so often get wierded out by the full moon and don't realize its the full moon until I see it glaring at me from the sky.

It gets me all jittery with an erratic energy. It makes me want to produce and be creative and productive but its also distracting. It makes me want to party and dance and flirt. Its a disturbing mixture. But once I realize its the moon then I can calm down and try to channel it a little bit.

Its particularly intense this phase becasue I'm charged up from the fairy festival. There is something so welcoming and restorative about the festival. I don't know what it is. I know its partly because its staged on an organic farm and its very rural and unsophisticated, the grass is untreaded and wild and the trees are full and unmulched and there are little groves and streams and it retains some wildness.

Its also becasue many peple are uninhibited in their dress and freely express themselves. Its wonderful. There are folks who sort of "cheat" and wear their renaissance fest outfit and just add wings. There are people who have clearly spent weeks plannig and designing theie outfit-spectacular fabrics and textures and makeup and wings that express some element of their personality.
There are the most folks who maybe purchase bits and bats pre-made but try to make it their own.
There are club kid fairies and goth fairies and Mary Engelbreit fairies and wiccan fairies and "ren fest" fairies. Old, young, men, women, transgenders, children, farmers, yuppies, crazy is really the most diverse mixture of people I know of.

The majority of the crafts are high caliber and express originality. Fabric work, painting, ceramics, stained glass, jewelry, leather craft...a good selction. And of course food.
I take 1 or 2 quick ganders of the merchandise,than find a good shady spot and park myself to watch the delightful parade of humanity.

It invigorates me, it makes me want to create myself. It makes me want to make stuff. I unfortunately don't have an art work space at the moment and most of my art supplies are scattered haphazardly around the house. I want to consolidate it but I seem to keep getting embroiled in daily house maintenance and not these projects. Do they have a creative people maid service? One that knows what piles to move and what piles to keep? A maid service that just vacuums, cleans toilets and mops and doesn't try to dust around the found fabric flowers, the dishes of beads, the rocks my daughter collected, the dozens of snipped magazine pictures, the stacks of hastily scribbled notes that aren't organized yet, the handbags that dangle from the banister, the mushroom birds and insects that are waiting for their purpose, my tiny stuff collection that spills out of its shadow box, the baskets of junk that haven't been sorted yet? Is there a maid for this kind of household? Because if there is I would hire them immediately and get to work on creating the dining room table/work bench I just dreamed up.

Holy Grail

of people watching today-the Faery Festival. Think cross section of humanity with homemade wings. Also some cool art work/craft work.
PArt of what frustrates me artistically/creatively is a craving for instant gratification but I think this may be rooted in my self esteem/insecurity issues.

I have some ideas for some cool jewelry sculptures. I just don't know how I'll undertake them with Sophie wanting to "help". I want ot play before I lose the images.

I am a little behind on my writing schedule but i gave my self permission. I will get back in the saddle now that Carm's schedule isn't so wacky this week.

And since I don't have anything else to do i've decided the living room needs to be a different color. But that will only be two full days of work at the very most. I think it will be worth it.

Today was also a reminder that caffeine really screws with my mental balance. I drank two cups and I am just whacked. I wasn't thinking since the hot sun was beating on me and the frozen mocha cappucino machine was calling my name...


I'm sunburned, stiff and slightly disappointed. The festival is over. It ran as smoothly as roller skates but there were only about 20 guests there to enjoy it.
Weather was superb, the live music was a real treat and all the vendors were delightful to work with.

It was much more like a a party than a festival.
I have little doubt that next year will be a much different event. Everyone was adamant about returning next year and bringing friends. That did make me feel better.

All the vendors I contacted at the last second who were uable to attend also intend to set up next year. We'll see what happens.

I've hatched another idea for a couple months away. I think it will be a lot of fun. I still need a good name for it. It will be an extreme cuisine/Iron Chef sort of deal to kick off our BugFest. We'll invite half a dozen reknowned local chefs to prepare meals in front of paying guests. There will be some mystery ingredients. The mystery ingredients will be insects!
Of course we'll also offer some "traditional" food but I thought that would be a unique event.

I've got some paperwork to follow thru on this week. Boring data entry stuff and then my nights will be for writing.

The computer issues seem to be sorted out now thankfully! It was getting extremely frustrating.

This not a rhetorical question

How! do you find a balance between the "passive", independent nature of a writing life with a need to be a human being engaged in life?
They seem mutually exclusive.
I know writing requires a life lived or one's writing has no energy or vitality.
But how do you manage time for the solitary work and "daydreaming" that writing requires and interactive, social, goal oriented endeavors?
When I am in the midst of event planning, for example, my mind often feels like its in a state of quiet clamoring. It is much more difficult to find the subtle focus that channels my quality writing.
My writing is important and satisfying but so is the feeling of being engaged in an active project. I want to find a way to become more focused and organized in my "chaotic" work and use that sense of accomplishment ot help propel my writing. USe it to give my writing vim and vigor.