Category: Writing

Butterfly whisper

Butterflies waft past the poet’s ear

They whisper rhymes in rhythm

She holds their ageless wisdom

Then breathes to life a song

Butterfly

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Writing Prompt: Everything Changes (from Aug. 2014)

August sneaked up on me. I should have known it was coming when the first day of summer happened. Well, I did know. The summer solstice, a day that I used to look forward to, has become a reminder that winter is on its way. The days start getting shorter, and I begin to feel like I’m running out of time. I am of course running out of time. Aren’t we all?

It’s hot and muggy today because this is August, and that’s what August does. It serves as summer’s next to last hurrah. The last hurrah is that week in October when the temperatures are in the upper 70s or even mid-80s. Nature is a tease.

I’m on the sidewalk on 10th street, heading toward the big empty bus shelter.  I’m wondering if the bus will be late again. I look up at the overcast sky and hope I can get off of the bus and to my car before the rain starts. It may not rain, but it looks like it might. Out of nowhere comes a surprisingly cool breeze. It blows my skirt up, and as I look down to make sure I’m not flashing my underwear, I see a piece of paper by my right foot. It isn’t an ordinary piece of paper though. It’s one of those origami fortune telling things that kids in grade school used to create.

I pick it up, stick the thumb and forefinger of each hand in the slots, and open and close the device to see what my future might hold.  It’s blank. There is nothing. No boys’ names, no cities where I might one day live, no numbers, no nothing. Is this a sign? Does this mean that the future is mine to determine?

I could tell you that from that day forward my life changed because I decided to take control of my destiny.  I could tell you that I quickly became successful and that all of my dreams suddenly came true. That didn’t happen. What I did do was begin to believe in myself a little more. I started working harder to achieve my dreams because the blank origami fortune teller showed me that nothing is specific. Success isn’t certain, but neither is failure. So why not give life my best try.

 

 

Oragami fortune telling device

With Words

I’ve seen many crows flying around in my town for the last few days. These are sizable birds. When I see birds I think they must have a message for me. Maybe some of them do. Crows are able to recognize people’s faces. Is there a crow out there that knows me?

My life as a normal person is not at all interesting, so I try and convince myself that the presence of these crows in the sky has some mystical meaning.

I could be expressing gratitude for the uneventful life I lead. I’m not in a wildfire, or getting tear-gassed as I try and cross a border with my child. I have food, shelter, a car, devices that can access the internet, and a lot of stuff that I’d like to get rid of because I have a problem with clutter. Still, it feels as if there is something I’m missing. There’s something that I’m doing wrong.

Sometimes it helps to escape into art making.

Digital mixed media picture of crow
Digital mixed-media collage by Laura McCain Reed

The act of writing a poem also provides relief.

Wouldn’t it be be nice to be able to eat a giant chocolate candy bar whenever the craving strikes? I understand people who use food as a drugs. I see why people get high and drunk. We all need to escape the mundane.

This existential anxt is likely a product of seasonal affective disorder. Things should get better when winter comes and days begin to get longer.

For now, I’ll keep looking for messages from birds and making meaning with words.

This life and others

Lotus blossom on pond
Photo by Diego Madrigal on Pexels.com

I feel I’ve lived a thousand lives

I wanted to write a poem about reincarnation.

About the knowing I have that this life, in this body is just one of hundreds. Maybe one of thousands.

I wanted to express, in verse, the joy of understanding that I am eternal. That we are eternal.

I couldn’t do it.

So I wrote a poem about writing a poem. That’s all I could manage. 

Save the world

Do you dream of saving the world? Do you draw up plans when you sleep at night?

Have you studied the heroes both super and mortal to learn ways to make things right?

Is your heart pure? Your aim sure? Can you toil in anonymity?

Do you compost your food? Avoid being rude? Ensure web accessibility?

So dear friend take heart, you’re doing your part.

Fight the good fight.

Keep shining your light.

Earth and angelic figure