Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Tuesday, November 19, 2013
Monday, November 18, 2013
There is a restlessness I feel. Uncertain whether it is the change of season or the fact that this time of year always seems to unearth projects like knitting, freshening up the interior of the house or tackling stacks of books or writing that novel. I become a tad anxious and overwhelmed, but immersion in nature, I believe will stimulate self-truth, upright the ship for a voyage to face whatever lies ahead in this journey.
Innately, I feel like running out into the wilderness of my backyard, touching every living surface particularly noting the sights, smells and feeling of nature. I wish to see the light of the sun through the paper thin bark of a white birch, the loose end unwrapped and flapping softly to mark a passing breeze. I wish to feel the cold under my bare feet as I race on a whim to the garden where the towering sunflower skeletons, hollowed and lifeless stand ready to catch the snow with petals shriveled and the color of creamy coffee. This is not the way one writer should experience life-sedentary from the arm of a chair, living life vicariously. I need to get up, out and move.
Sunday, November 17, 2013
When I visit home, I feel much like I did during those early journeys on my bike. It takes so long to get home, I am never able to linger, explore all the crooks and crannies to recall details of my past life in Biddeford. Not having lived there in over three decades now, the changes make it hard to remember. The big historic tree in front of my grandmother's apartment was cut down. The changes are not all bad, many once empty store fronts have new life now as restaurants have opened and my beloved city is being revitalized as a center for the arts.
When I was little, I would most often walk throughout the city with my grandmother Caroline. We would visit Butler's where extra attention was given to my grandmother's carefully wrapped in lamb skin feet. The shoe attendant would take great care in helping my grandmother get the perfect shoes with the most comfortable fit. I would walk up and down the sweeping staircase of this small department store slipping my hand down the shiny wooden banister my heels clicking on the large tiles as I landed at the bottom of the stairs. Once the shoes were purchased, my Grandmother would take me to Woolworth's a door or two down from Butler's for a whirl in the soda fountain stools while I waited for a sundae or a colossal banana split. The price was set in accordance with the small tag found inside the balloon of my choosing that hung like a bunch of bananas above our heads on each stainless steel column that lined the counter area. The draw of the colorful array of round balloons must have sold a number of banana splits each day, for while my Gram and I sat there we heard the pop of many a balloon the only way to pay for your split.
With a full belly, the walk home seemed long. Sometimes we would stop at a shop near the Thatcher Hotel where they just sold undergarments. My grandmother would pull a dark green curtain aside while a woman with a short, graying hair and a tape measure dangling from her neck would follow my grandmother. I would wait patiently until they both emerged. Everyone would talk in undertones, a parcel was quickly put into a brown paper bag and we would head for home. After a morning of running errands, my grandmother would arrange her bed for an afternoon nap. The coverlet folded down at the foot of the bed and then removed so it would not be dirty or wrinkled. I don't actually recall napping, but we would snuggle in her bed and she would listen to my hours spent with Sister Mary Natalie my first grade teacher at St. Mary's School and she would tell me of the two weeks she spent with my aunt as they traversed this great country with two little kids in the backseat. It sounds like an adventure, one that my grandmother cherished.
As I age, it is the moments spent growing up in a bustling little city in southern Maine where running ordinary day to day errands with my grandmother, buying shoes and spinning in a soda fountain chair are what I cherish. It is the slowing down and the taking time that help to forge the memories. I went cross country in a big old jet plane, but I don't remember much. Pardon the cliche: There's no place like home.
Saturday, November 16, 2013
Hues of color bleed through the darkness,
When not long ago,
Pricks of light shone,
Through black, nothingness.
Fresh memories empty into
Silence reveals the
Thursday, November 14, 2013
Wednesday, November 13, 2013
At one point in my life, I prayed, meditated and did yoga everyday. Recently, I have given renewed attention to my spirituality and I honestly crave meditation. yoga and long walks in the woods which I find to be meditative. When I review how I have spent my time each day, I am embarrassed.
I must evaluate the quality and need for the activities that eat up my time. Prayer, work, eating (all necessary), writing, reading and photography (also necessary) and then there's social networking. Do I have the discipline it takes to moderate this activity? I have made those promises to myself before, only to be sucked into the vortex emerging hours later with little accomplished. We got rid of cable TV because it did not contribute to my well-being or the well-being of my family. For the most part, I have replaced the nearly mindless chatter of the tube for the highly dysfunctional world of Facebook where dirty laundry is aired, people bash one another with no remorse and proper grammar is entirely ignored. Why, oh why do I not have better regard for how I spend my time? It is all about discipline, isn't it? Moderation in all things.