Monthly Archives: June 2012

This is mundane

I’m peering over the top of my monitor, looking at the back of the monitor two desks away. It’s a Dell. I’m looking at the silvery, shiny elevator door and the white up and down arrows above the door. Neither arrow is lit. The screen between the arrows is displaying a number one. This is the first floor, so I guess the elevator is right here.

View from the desk

This is mundane. Mundanity isn’t such a bad thing is it? There are people living in war zones who have to hide from gunfire everyday. Some people are finding out this very minute that they have Cancer, or that a loved one has died, or that they’ve lost their job or home.I’m looking at an elevator door and writing about it. Things could be worse.

It’s 102 degrees outside, but I’m inside wearing a sweater. I’ll have to go outside soon and walk through the hot breeze, but I’ll get into my air-conditioned car and drive home to a house that my husband keeps colder than I would prefer.

I’ll eat my dinner and hopefully remember to think about those who won’t get an evening meal. I say that now, but I probably will forget, because eating dinner in my air-conditioned house is mundane.

Monday

-Describe each day of the week as if it was a person.

A writing prompt found here:  http://writingprompts.tumblr.com/page/3

Monday has a bit of an attitude problem. He hates everybody and everything (including himself). He grips his coffee mug as he stomps around the office. If someone says hello to him he pretends everything is fine and chirps a greeting in return. All around him are reminders of injuries he’s endured over the years. If he hears laughter he is annoyed. He wonders how anyone can bear to be in this place, or in any place for that matter.

He feels sorry for himself even though he knows there is nothing really wrong. He wants to scream, break  things, cry, or just lie down and sleep for a very long time; but he keeps going. He sits down, grits his teeth, and does what he has to do.

Monday is a trooper slogging through the swamp, swatting mosquitoes, expecting his enemy to creep out from behind a bush and cut him down, leave him for dead. But he prevails. He makes it back to camp. He sits down and removes the boots from his aching feet. He takes a picture out of his pack and gazes at it dreamily. The picture is of Tuesday. She’s beautiful, and he knows he’ll see her very soon.

Sunday

-Describe each day of the week as if it was a person.

A writing prompt found here:  http://writingprompts.tumblr.com/page/3

Sunday is sleepy. She turns on the light in the morning, but she doesn’t get out of bed until it is time. Only she knows when it is time. When she gets up she thinks about making breakfast, but it’s probably too late so she’ll have Saturday’s leftovers.  She thinks about going to the garden to pull weeds, but she isn’t dressed, and she won’t dress until it is time.

She thinks of yesterday’s missed opportunities and feels a little bit ashamed of her weekend sister. She thinks of Monday who postures pompously, but is ultimately lazy to his very core. She wishes he would try harder, and she makes a list of things for him to accomplish, but she knows better.

Sunday is lonely. She doesn’t have as much company as the other days do.  She doesn’t see this as an advantage, as having time to herself to meditate and just be. As the years go by, she’ll learn.

Close your eyes, think of an object: writing prompt

The black chair

It’s not leather but it’s supposed to look like leather. Cammie, our chihuahua, has claimed the chair as her own. She sleeps in it everyday. When she’s in it, all curled up, you almost can’t see her because her dark brown (almost black) fur blends into the faux leather.

Cammie in the chair

Cammie in the chair

The chair has a matching foot rest that can be shifted forward and backward. The chair rotates on its base. Sometimes it starts the rotation seemingly on its own, and you see Cammie slowly going around. She doesn’t seem to mind the ride.

There was talk of giving up the chair after the other dog, Sadie, demolished the back of both armrests with her teeth. It looks terrible, but it’s not like we’re going to be featured in House Beautiful any time soon. And besides, what would Cammie do without her chair?

Cloudy Images

I saw big, white, billowy clouds in the June blue sky today. They were like giant soft stones, hovering above me, still and silent.

I wanted to take a picture, but I didn’t think I could do them justice. A picture can’t capture the essence of a cloud. A picture doesn’t really capture anything does it?  It lasts longer than a memory, but it’s false. If I’ve ever been moved by the sight of a beautiful flower, and I mean moved almost to tears, if I took a picture of that flower, all of the emotion I felt for it was absent in the resulting photographic image.

I want to talk about beauty, because sometimes I think it is what matters most in life.  Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything beautiful, for beauty is God’s handwriting.”  Now, I’m not a practicing member of any religious sect, but I do believe that the universe didn’t just come into existence for no reason. I see God and the universe (as we know it) as being one and the same. Every cloud, every flower, every tree, every animal, every natural thing spills from God’s pen and fills our minds and souls (if souls exist) with what I think of as God.

I’m not sure if I put that as eloquently as I wanted, but words are like photos. They aren’t enough to capture the essence of what we want to express. I’m compelled to keep trying, because I’ve read beautiful poetry and prose. I’ve been moved to tears by the words of skillful writers. When that happens to us, we become more than what we were before.

I don’t think that human beings can create beauty. We are not God. We can’t bring things into existence out of nothing. What we can do is illuminate beauty. We can describe it to others so that they might appreciate what we have experienced. When we do this we get a little closer to each other, and we perhaps find our own way to God, or to the universe if you like.

Remembering

I remember my childhood in snapshots, and I’ve been seeing those pictures in my mind a lot lately. I miss those days. If I could go back and live again in that simpler time, I would. In my memories it’s always spring or summer. Colors were brighter, days were longer, everything I had was given to me. I’m all grown up now and sometimes life feels like a struggle. Is it wrong to wish for a return to childhood? Or does wishing for the impossible fuel my feeling of dissatisfaction with my current reality?

My Snapshots

  • The yard across from our town house had a pretty big kiddie pool. It was big enough that they had a slide for it. I don’t know that I ever got in that pool, but I remember seeing it.
  • Some pink plastic high-heeled shoes made for little  girls to play dress up. I got it for my birthday (maybe the 5th). I think it came with a little pink parasol too.  I loved umbrellas when I  was little. I remember having a clear plastic dome type umbrella with Peanuts characters on it. There are many pictures of me holding an umbrella.
Laura with umbrella

Laura with umbrella

  • I see myself riding my new bike around in circles in our two-car driveway. I think I remember cutting the corner too close and falling.
  • My best friend Carrie and I would go up to the creek in the woods behind our houses and catch salamanders. We felt like real pioneers in those woods.  We would even swing across the creek on a vine that hung over it. I’m surprised it never broke and sent us crashing onto the ground. We always came home safe.
  • I remember going shopping with my mother for a pair of clogs. I guess clogs were all the rage, and it was important that I kept up with my peers.  It seems we drove quite a distance to another part of town. I loved those shoes. They were brown with leather uppers and the rest was wood.
  • It seems that Mom and I once went to a Hardees, or some similar place, on that side of town. We got our hamburgers, got back in the car, and I started crying. I had ordered a plain hamburger. but they gave me one with ketchup and mustard. I was devastated. Mom, who thought I had perhaps been stung by a bee, was quite worried. I’m not sure if we took the hamburger back or not.

I could go on and on recounting these memories. but I won’t. There are more of them than I realized.

For now, I suppose I should focus on the new memories I’m making. I think I’ll try to keep writing about them.