“Sit there and describe. And because the detail is divine, if you caress it into life, the world lost or ignored, the world ruined or devalued, comes to life. The little world you alone can bring into being, bit by broken bit, angles into the great world. It’s voice, your style. Or, call it what it is—your integrity.”
~ Patricia Hampl, The Art of the Wasted Day
note: I’m currently reading The Art of the Wasted Day by Patricia Hampl. I just finished re-reading the Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes.
Ride the wave one writer says
Pretend every word you have written is true
The stone arrangement has meaning
Messiness is a word seldom heard
A childhood of uncoordinated colors
Always there and barely noticed.
Soon it will be New Year
Another node in a chain of changes
Like looking forward to frequent distractions
Errands to make, barrels to blend
Will it be jazz or folk songs?
Should I invite her to watch the sunset?
There will be time for silhouettes
I have to remember to adjust the aperture
Light and time are never still
There are other more dangerous propositions.
note: Books I’m reading:
The Practice of Contemplative Photography by Andy Karr and Michael Wood
The Creative Artist by Nita Leland
Abandon by Pico Iyer
Still Writing by Dani Shapiro
The sound of whipping eggs
Energy mimics chaotic emotion
Of misplaced photographs
Critical point of dominance
Of contemporary thinking
And concepts emerge in avalanche.
You carry your imagination everywhere
Enduring the questions of survival
Writing stories in long hand
In the backyard full of bougainvillea
After driving through a dense traffic everyday.
Not a sweeping change
But a foray in symmetry in life
That is common and unnoticed.
“Neglect nothing that will serve to make you great.”- attributed to Stendhal
“Laziness is a sign of mediocrity.”- attributed to Voltaire
note: both quotations are quoted by Julian Barnes in his book, Keeping An Eye Open, Essays on Art.
Today the ashes from last night’s grilling
Of eggplant, chicken, and asparagus
Today is the gathering of heard stories from yesterday
Like remains of a town buried by rising ocean tide
I’m collecting them in a brown bag
They are read and being written.
I’ll try not to drop any portion on the ground
It’s not edible but may pollute the air
Shall I read it loud while gathering
Maybe the scattering will nudge late sleepers to rise,
Their existence acknowledge?
Both are bound to certain collections
A place for nourishment, for strangers.
I’m fascinated by possibilities,
They are concrete numbers, abstract in the mind.
They are bells to arouse a village
They create a sound, tuneless to melodious tune
How to find the thread through the eye of a needle.
The ordinary things that sing and comfort
The birds and my sandals
My morning walk expands my morning
Carrying a book and stopping
and sit on benches along the way
to read and maybe write a note or two
my feet and pages get along
like kindlings to start a fire.
My voice bounces in greetings
when I meet other walkers
their dogs running towards me
I walk and read and say hello
what other wonders do a day offers
to lift the spirits?
note: photo of the palm tree in front of the door of our condo.
Every morning she opens her bedroom window
scatter her seeds of thought
words will bloom in the garden
or birds may spread them further away
you may have to travel to find them.
“DON’T WRITE WHAT YOU KNOW, WRITE toward what you want to know.”
“Step out of your skin. Risk yourself…”
“A writer is an explorer.”
-Colum McCann, Letters to a Young Writer
note: quotations from the book, Letters to a Young Writer, by Colum McCann, which I’m currently reading.
note: Mrs. Abstract and I with 2 friends toured the Huntington Library near Pasadena,CA. yesterday. The 2 captions are by Octavia E. Butler. She has an exhibit there in her honor.
The walking distance covered today
Is more than yesterday
The weight of creation
Is heavier every day
To bloom and to prune
Is an effort, work is always incomplete
You don’t have to apologize
You will finish it one day.