I just attended my third consecutive Write on the Sound writer’s conference in Edmonds, Washington. These gatherings always bombard me with new thoughts and ideas while stirring up my mind. The conference mental rush undoubtedly causes plenty of thought, the trick is to get some to flow out of the hand and onto the page. One of my chosen sessions started with three writing prompts (none of which did anything for me, so I wandered off on my own a little).
I often lay awake recalling how good it used to be.
The days back in time when with no effort, no thought, nothing – it just happened.
At the end of a day I could just turn on the radio, lay down and drift away… for hours.
Very different from my current life – I could stay asleep.
The question comes up, “Do writing conference’s help you become a better writer?”
For me sharing time with others interested in learning about writing, from other writers, charges a battery (that for many years I didn’t know that I had). So as long these gatherings stir something in me I’ll go, as for becoming a better writer – who knows?
August 22, 2015 I attended another Writing Workshop taught by Matt Love at the Fort George Brewery in Astoria, Oregon.
This was my second time in the former car dealership showroom turned brewery conference room, sitting amongst some kegs of aging beer and learning more about writing.
From the various prompts, discussion, breaks to walk around Astoria and a strong beer – I ended up with this:
I usually walk with purpose (I have a dog) and out of necessity (my back chronically reminds me) – I do this daily. Often I simply wish to walk for no reason, to range about. Today my purpose was to unwind my mind and let my feet range.
When walking I typically try not to think – it is my escape. I am however easily distracted by people (not today) and architecture (Astoria has plenty worthy of noticing). While glancing at older buildings (more refreshened since my last visit) and ruins of pilings wobbling in the river, I noticed something new. Colorful bits of random display, knitted patches of several different people’s artwork twisted, wrapped and tied around posts, benches and a gate. Public displays of an orchestrated effort to grab attention and brighten the day for those who notice.
Today my mind was bombed by yarn.
How do they steal hearts?
Miniature versions of promise,
rapid growth and gradual change.
Soft souls wrapped in warm fur,
kind spirits oozing through soft eyes.
Overflowing with delight,
playful creatures learning and teaching.
Twitching whiskers move wild tails,
quiet walks find peaceful sleep.
When the thievery stops,
a piece of heart dies.
Seeing them standing under their umbrella as we walked by; feeling the rain made me wonder if they knew what they were missing…
Mist in their hair, drops hitting their faces, fresh water running down their necks – No they missed all of this.
The Magic of Rain isn’t for everyone rinsed through my mind every time I said, “Come on, let’s go get wet” as we headed out the garage door to walk in our weather.
When conversations not yet had
Let others Down
Becoming – Missteps
Feelings get Tarnished
Rumor has it there was a small town brothel located somewhere in the Oregon Territory with a need. Business was growing and they wanted a place for visitors to sit while they waited in the parlor. Some kind of deal was made and a few sections of chairs from the church were relocated. As times and hypocrisies changed these easily recognizable seats became a bit of gossip around town. Apparently the folding furniture was the same as that used by the funeral parlor and often shared back and forth to accommodate larger crowds, rendering it unclear exactly where to place the blame.
When the town died all of the seats were acquired by a man on the board of directors for an insane asylum and a prison. The seats typically sat in an auditorium where doctors and scientists smoked and discussed the abnormal and treatments for those afflicted – on the occasion of executions, sections were loaned to the prison for the witness room spectators.
As times changed again the asylum closed and these seats made their way to Seattle to be used in a theatre.
All of these institutions and the characters involved are long gone; no one can confirm any of this story.
Is any of it true?
How did this section of garish seats end up in an eclectic household?
Does anyone even care?
Insomnia is frosting on the turd cake of Chronic Pain
I don’t even remember the first Time that I did it.
It was no big deal, not like forming some kind of habit.
Over Time I did it a little more often, I quietly killed some.
Sometimes it was fun, mostly just doing it out of occasional boredom.
Suddenly one day I was driven to obsession.
Murdering in mass and serial slaughtering consumed me.
Death now burned my eyes as they opened in the early hours.
Random methods to choke, smother and drown Time became routine.
Driving the need to kill Time and feed my aging Dragon.
The lines have cut deeper into my face,
I have a few more fights left in me,
Maybe one more Crash.
Yet I still don’t have some answers, the answers, those that make me talk to myself.
When I wear my Grandfathers’ clothes: it is a hug from the past.
I proudly wear the coveralls of one and the winter jacket of the other.
These Giants of my youth quietly surround me.