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Posts Tagged ‘poetry’

These days I have dozens of magazine articles and several books under my belt. I have signed contracts for more books to come. I am considered to be a serious writer by my friends and family. So when I say I can’t go somewhere or take part in some event, because I have deadlines or edits, they accept it peacefully.

But that hasn’t always been the case.

Back before I ever had an article or story published, I was mostly a closet writer. Few people other than my immediate household knew I wrote. Many knew I loved to read, but no one put a connection between the two. Writing remained a secret endeavor of mine.

adult frowned male writer working on typewriter at home

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

When I was working on something great and was asked to attend something, it would be awkward to find excuses not to so I could stay home and write. Sometimes I really didn’t want to attend the function. I wanted–needed–to stay home and write but the explanation would go over as well as saying I couldn’t go out because I was washing my hair. Without published clips, I lacked the credibility to say I had to stay in and write.

But the fact is, writing those early “learner” stories, short shorts, poems, articles are all just as important as our tenth or twentieth published, or “real” book or article or poem. They all need to be drafted, written, revised, polished, etc…. Whether they make it fully through the road to publication is immaterial to their value–even in the eyes of our family and friends.

crop woman with coffee writing in notebook on bed

Photo by Ketut Subiyanto on Pexels.com

The ones that end up in the bottom of the drawer are just the necessary stepping stone to publication. But are they valid “writing”? Enough to be used as an acceptable excuse to avoid temporary socialization? Can we say we need to research now or have edits due back to the publisher Monday or submission deadline and be viewed as legitimate? Or just using a lame excuse?

woman in gray sweater sitting on wooden floor typing on portable computer

Photo by bongkarn thanyakij on Pexels.com

When do we become the “writer” or “poet” or “artist” who can use our craft as acceptable validity to remain in and work just as any other real work worker? The lawyer preparing for trial, the student studying for finals, the medical professional, the self-employed person who has after hours admin. All of them are excused because they have “work to do”. When does the literary artist cross that line and join their ranks?

 

 

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Today, January 27th, is National Chocolate Appreciation Day. This could be like a nation-wide holiday. To celebrate, I thought I’d recycle a page someone featured on their blog earlier this year.

 

Cake Therapy

birthday-cake-2

choc cake finished productThere was a time when Ryan Jo Summers didn’t know if she was going to live until her next birthday. Undergoing surgery after surgery on her pelvis, only to suffer from an abdominal condition that nearly killed her.

After a two week stay in the hospital in a drug induced coma, she was finally able to go home.  She’s here on Fun Friday to share her sweet poem, Cake Therapy, and talk about a lovely recipe about the cake that she had to bake as a symbol of her year of suffering. The cake was difficult to bake, but well worth it.

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Cake Therapy  by Ryan Jo Summers

 

I had wanted to bake a cake, a hard one

a challenge, meant to be both therapy and fun.

A ‘difficult’ rated birthday cake, chocolate of course

To mark my birthday this year, my forty-forth.

Good intentions, I thought, to bake a grand layered cake

for my hard fought birthday, take to work, and celebrate

This year has brought many ups, down, trials and changes

and therapy I find often comes in phases.

 From measuring, leveling, mix and stir

until all the ingredients begin to blur

 A certain sense of unity

can be found by following the recipe

 Next into the oven, then the washing up

bowls, spoons, soapy water and the cups

Except something went unexpectedly wrong

overflowing, the pans set off the smoke alarm’s song

I know it’s part of what I had asked for—the challenge

so gamely the cake base I did try to salvage

 So tonight the failed effort goes into the trash bin

And tomorrow I shall attempt to bake a cake again

 Perhaps this foiled start is a symbol, a sign

Of the journey this year I have taken, the hills I have had to climb

 

So that is the poem I wrote while recovering. That was a few years ago, but I’ve never tried the cake again. I still have the recipe, so if you’d like a copy, just mention your contact method in the comments and I’ll get it to you.

Happy Chocolate Appreciation Day!! Go have a bite of your favorite chocolate treat and celebrate all the hills you have climbed.

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Greetings. Yesterday I had the sudden thought to add some poetry to my website. I am still learning how to build the site and have just discovered I can add pages as I want. My last effort was trying to add video to a specific page. I gave up and have not gone back since. That was last week.

So today I added a Poetry page and wrote down two short poems to share. I have learned something in the process. Most of my poems tend to be lengthy and thereby won’t fit on the website unless they are the only one listed. I might do that later, take down the new ones  and just add a single long one.

I might have mentioned it before that writing poetry is therapy for me, cathartic when I need to work through something. Much like the pages of my journal, sometimes filled with angst, pain and puzzlement. A measuring stick or snapshot of my life at that moment. What is going on? How far have I come? How good am I doing? What path am I following? How much further do I need to go? What changes should I make? All questions I ask myself in the form of regular check ins. Which ironically is often times supplied in the form of trials and testing. Funny how that happens.  When we feel the stress of the storm, we learn the strength of the anchor.

Poetry and journaling is my anchor, keeping me grounded as I weather the storm. It is an inherited trait. Apparently my dad’s aunt used to do the same thing. Though I never met her, my dad said she used to tell family and friends writing poetry was her way of dealing with the heartaches and losses in her life. I have to agree it is effective.

So hop over to the website and check out the new additions and please be sure to let me know what you think of them.  http://www.ryanjosummers.com

 

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