Tag: life

Now

Pocket watches hanging on chains
You can't get ahead
It's not possible
Not in any lasting tangible sense
You may think you're ahead
But you've only caught up
Because the thing that is finished
Must be replaced
With something fresh and new
Sit back and rest for a moment
You have to rest
Breathe for a minute or two
It's what you must do
But realize that time is always marching forward
You are losing ground
Now
Now
And now
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Writing on a Timer

I set the timer for 20 minutes. I was afraid to make it 30. The goals is to just write. It occurred to me yesterday that I could surely make myself take 30 minutes each day to write. I’m starting with 20. A start is a start.

A co-worker of mine died last week from something unexpected and rare. He was 33. I’ve known him only the two years or so that I’ve worked where I work. We weren’t friends, but we talked from time to time.We communicated in the project management software environment.

I didn’t know him well, but I knew he was one of the good people in the world. I’ve been thinking about him a lot. I dreamed one night that I was weeping for him.

I believe that he may have planned to end things this way while he was on the other side, between earthly incarnations. Now that I believe in reincarnation and pre-birth planning, I see death in a new light. I want everyone to read/listen to the books I’ve listened to on this topic. In fact, I’ll give you a list right now.

I managed to use most of the writing time making that list. That’s okay. It needed to be done.

This wasn’t much of a writing exercise. Don’t worry, I have more to say. I always have something to say.

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

East could be West

Life as a human is strange

There are certain obligations

Things we’re required to do

What happens when we just don’t?

What if we all just decided to stop?

What if we turned around and walked in the other direction?

We could turn our backs on what we know and let night be day. East could be west.

We could set normal aside and embrace the unknown.

We could be human in different ways.

Would it all add up to the same amount of strange?

Would we simply be walking in circles?

Digital collage
By L.M. Reed

Defeated

When you challenge yourself to do better and then don’t

You decide to try harder the next time

You say, “this is the weekend I’ll get things done”

You say, “I’ll schedule my time”

You say, “I won’t sleep in”

“I’ll go to the gym”

“I’ll clean the bathtub”

Suddenly it’s Sunday and you’ve done none of it

And you ate badly

And you feel defeated knowing that it will happen the same way next weekend

Tiger on its back

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.

Focus

I have pledged many times to stick to one or two spare-time activities. I can’t do it. Last year I was obsessed with making digital art. I even had an art show in October. These days I’m not doing much art at all.

Writing should be my main thing, and I’ve been posting to my blog pretty regularly for the past few months. I had some momentum going for a while, but things are dragging.

I have been doing more yoga. Yoga makes me feel good.

My new thing is trying to sell my photos on Foap. I have thousands. of pictures on Flickr. Some of them seem sale-worthy. If that’s a term one can use.

It takes a lot of work to pick images, edit them a little, upload them with the Foap app, and then add descriptions and tags. The activity consumed a large part of my weekend. Foap says that your photos are more likely to sell if you have a lot of them. I am looking to supplement my income, and so far the blog has made only $1.06 from WordAds.

In my dream world, I would quit my day-job to blog and do photography full time. I’m not there yet.

I won’t go into my story of relearning the guitar to get my skills back to sub-mediocre. That’s for another day.

Acoustic guitar