thoughts on writing

I’ve been at this (TWSO) program since September, reading through the modules and attempting to keep up on the conversations flowing on the board (sadly, without contributing too much – which I feel is an integral part to the rich community building potential of the program).

One of the modules asks us to examine our writing habits and place(s) of writing, instructs us to look at ergonomics and long-term comfort, etc.

Of course I find this funny. [Insert my peals of raucous laughter here.]

I write on the fly most of the time, particularly my poetry – standing at the bus stop, waiting for the bus – while walking, even, because the words come when they come.

[Insert a link here – – to the story about the poet who sees her poems come like a storm over the horizon, and she must run, run, to pen and paper so that she can capture them as they course through her, otherwise she loses the opportunity and the poems move on to be captured by others better prepared.]

I sneak in words and lines, here and there, plugged into my iPhone notes with two thumbs. Then, when I have more time, I review what I’ve written and rework the words… usually while I’m laying in bed, supine, holding up my iPhone in the inverted cradle of my hands, two thumbs busily tapping against the glass – in the dark, with only the light of the phone puncturing it.

I’m sure that neither set up could be considered ergonomic.

[Insert more laughs… the rueing sort, that clearly shows I am not one of those writers who has lots of time to worry about the semantics of ideal location.]

I wish I was.

I wish I had time to focus on my writing, undisturbed.

Long sequences of time where my imagination can be let to fly along imaginal lines, like the geese in Mary Oliver’s poem, moving, moving, finding their way home, despite the diurnal variations in airflow reshaping their trajectory.

I get there, eventually.  My words arrive.  They just don’t do so in a way that I can predict or plan for.

My desk chair is a swivel wood-backed drafting stool, with a foot rest and a pneumatic handle that allows me to adjust its height.  I have on it an orange pillow, embroidered with bright colours – I had picked it up at a yoga studio in Irvine, had intended it as a topper to my meditation pillow.  It serves a different sort of meditation now, one filled with half-formed thoughts, groupings of words egged into being through the ingestion of copious cups of coffee, sometimes spiked with Bailey’s – all encouraged to come forth and be examined rather than flicked aside, as preferred during the practice of actual meditation.

The desk is an old Ikea birch veneered pressed board wood laminate number which has seen better days.  My son, who has an identical one -or they were identical when they first came out of their boxes- has stabbed gashes into the writing surface during a particularly ghastly phase of adolescence.  Clearly he doesn’t use his for the purpose of writing.

Mine looks worn, patches of the surface laminate worn away through copious use, along the edges and the areas closest to where my keyboard rests.

I suppose I’ve gotten my money’s worth.

My computer, though, is a dream machine.  Years ago (when I first got it) I wrote a blog post about it, how I traded in my car for another machine that I would certainly ride more than I ever did the car.  This still holds true.

I especially enjoy watching Netflix and Shomi streams on it.  It’s replaced another machine, as well: the television.

Time to write is squeezed through the noise of the daily minutia of chores and responsibilities (especially the one of earning our daily bread – which pays for food in our bellies and the roof over our heads.. and cellphone subscriptions, high-speed cable connections and the slack that allows us to fill our inner and outer spaces with the niceties that make life worthwhile).

So here I am, writing about writing, while my novel sits in my belly, a little over thirty-thousand words strong, continuing to gestate.

Today I’ll put my hand on my belly and see if I can feel it kick.

staycations and all that

the-universe-you-are-here (photo courtesy of

Today marks the end of my “staycation”, during which I did very little.

I worked two nights and two weekend days (though I will tonight as well, but have not counted it yet).

I nursed the wound of losing my Kittie to a sudden illness.
I rejoiced in welcoming two new (and very big) furry pusses into our family fold (not without some level of drama, I might add).
[I revel in the wisdom of my son and his lovely girlfriend who knew that these purring new additions would lessen my sorrow.]

I cooked for and entertained a handful of good friends.

I cleaned the fridge.
Did some household chores.

Slept (or tried to, despite bouts of insomnia compounded by construction noise).

Journeyed through ten days of a new(ish) meditative practice with Carrie Anne Moss via her Milk and Honey online course (which was delightful, though due to the aforementioned nursing of wounds, I must say I was less than focused on regular practice).

I spent some time thinking. Thinking about what I wanted (and didn’t).
I moved furniture around.
I read.
I unplugged.
I spent a lot of time musing about how fleeting all of this is.

I thought about how much importance we impart to our meaning.
I wonder at the dichotomy of finding meaning in all of this and our establishing self-importance through the act of finding meaning.
Does either serve us well? Do both, simultaneously?

I pondered on how “meaning” and my understanding of it has shifted over the years; what I thought meaningful at different stages of my life.
How the shift in paradigm could not have occurred by any other means but through the passage of time and experiential knowledge, the grinding away of my external “skin” to smooth away all of the edges that I held on to as parts of who I believed I was integral to the journey.

I considered that perhaps some of those edges were necessary (and, now that they are no longer there, have changed me in inexorable ways – not always for the better).

I considered ways in which I could tap into the juice that those edges brought into being through other means more aligned with who I am now.
And now.
And now.

I marvel at my ever-changing nature.
I honour her.

There is love in my heart. It flows through me and over me and out into the world. Our world.
This love feeds back into me in ways that I would never have noticed a decade ago… or perhaps even yesterday.

I give thanks.
I have much to do.

small art 7.1.15


My cat has suddenly morphed into a fierce huntress, bringing us not one but two bird offerings yesterday (bless her little misguided heart).

As of last 10:01PM last night, I have officially been on a three day long vacation (staycation?).

The humidity levels have thankfully dropped and there is a breeze flowing through the house. I look forward to meeting up with a friend this evening for a full moon gathering.