JusJoJan Day 18: “That’ll Take Eighteen Thousand Years”

Jottin’ Through January!

So, here we are, back to Sunday again. How are you spending the day, today? Here in America, it’s Martin Luther King Jr. weekend (the official observance of his birthday will be tomorrow, even though it’s not actually his birthday, because government..).

It’s not a holiday for our family – my Accomplice left for work about half an hour ago, because chefs don’t get Saturdays and Sundays off. He will have tomorrow and Tuesday, his regular weekend. The kids don’t have school tomorrow, that’s true, but since school has never been part of the equation by which they live their lives, it doesn’t matter.

What’s relevant to us is that our credit union will be closed, and the Y might be, which will put something of a kink in our usual Monday schedule…

But that’s tomorrow, and, right now, that might as well be eighteen thousand years from now.

Or, at least, that’s what Annalise would have said, when she was four….

Not an 18,000 year wait! Taking the Metro into Washington D.C., September 2008, ages 4 and just 7.

All people have their quirks, and our children were no exception. For reasons I’ll likely never understand, when Lise was small, tired, and impatient for something, her exasperation at any delay always included some mention of the number eighteen.

Always.

“But it’s going to be eighteen minutes before I can see my show!”

Eighteen minutes can seem like a very long time…it’s longer than a human can hold their breath, after all. It can seem like an even longer time, maybe, when you haven’t lived all that many minutes yet, and most of the world you live in is too big for you, and you don’t have a lot of power in your own life…

Maybe, if she’d been treated with respect and parented peacefully from the beginning of her life, instead of from the age of four, she wouldn’t have said it. Maybe she wouldn’t have found waiting so intensely frustrating and discouraging…

When her patience was the most frayed, and she was nearly at the end of her tolerance for something that was unavoidably going to take far longer than she wanted it to – like, for instance, her birthday, she would half-wail,

“That’ll take EIGHTEEEN THOUSAND YEARS!!!”

It’s not easy, this waiting game…

And she had a forceful way of expressing that reality.

It took my considerably longer, if not quite eighteen thousand years, to understand that there were ways I could help her.

  • No, I can’t make time go faster. But we can celebrate her half-birthday, and that makes waiting for her actual birthday a bit easier (and gives us a bit of excitement a week after all the Christmas and New Year’s hubbub is over. There are other things we can do, too:

  • Netflix and Amazon are excellent ways to have many shows she wants to see available when she wants to see them.

  • Lines are a wonderful place to have a chat, with each other or other people in the queue.

  • Long car rides are great for exploring new music, deep conversations, word games, making plans, and reminiscing.

  • Video chats can cushion the wait when friends live too far away to see as often as she’d like.

  • Saying yes to requests throughout the year makes it easier to wait for those extra-special gift-receiving occasions.

  • Free access to the internet means a lot less time spent waiting for answers to all the many questions a ten year old mind can conjure.

  • Doing something else that doesn’t require waiting can help to pass the time pleasantly…and she might even forget that she was waiting!

Waiting with heart, on her half-birthday.

And perhaps more importantly than all the others:

Having power and autonomy in her own life, the freedom to make many choices for herself each day, and the ability to spend most of her time just as she pleases, means that there is a lot less waiting time in her life these days, because the waiting is seldom arbitrarily imposed. Rather than living her life by the clock, she is free to eat when she’s hungry, sleep when she’s tired, and wake up when she’s rested. If she wants to spend her day reading, or an afternoon on the trampoline, or hours making a movie with her Monster High Ghouls, her guinea pig, or her Furbys, she generally can.

When she was small, and ‘eighteen thousand years’ of waiting was a part of her perceived reality, I didn’t understand these things. I didn’t take her words seriously; I treated them as an exaggeration, and generally pooh-poohed them away, as though they were only words.

I wasn’t until I realized that she meant them, that the waiting really did feel like a long and hopeless distance to her, with no end in sight, that I was able to help her discover that there can be a tremendous amount of living held in waiting times.

I’m glad we’ve made that shift, because the adult world isn’t free of waiting. Someday, when she’s awaiting the birth of her first child, maybe, or stuck in traffic, or living with a four-year-old who finds waiting almost impossible, she’ll be better prepared, and she’ll have tools she can use and share with others.

Are you good at waiting, or do you find it frustrating? Have you ever had that ‘eighteen thousand years’ feeling? Wanna talk about it?

I’ll wait for you. =)

Got a few minutes?  Check out other Jotters here!

Waiting together for The Phantom of the Opera, age almost 10.

SoCS and JusJoJan Day 17: Measuring Up

Merrily down the Stream of Consciousness!

So, you know that old saying about killing two birds with one stone?

That’s what this post is intended to do. I’m continuing on with the ‘rithmetic theme for JusJoJan, and adding in the theme for this week’s installment of SoCS: “heal/heel. Actually, I’m not sure I’ll get that second heel in there, but I’m a feeling a little sleepy, a lot creative, and the house is quiet with the kids visiting their grandparents and cousins, so I just might.

What do you think of when you hear the phrase, “Measuring Up?”

To me, as a child, it most often had to do with standards I hadn’t set for myself. My parents set very high standards, in many areas. In some senses, they were Tiger Parents long before there was a fashionable name for it. If I got a 99% on a school test, my father would demand to know why it wasn’t a 100%.

The obvious answer was that I missed something, and hadn’t memorized or understood exactly perfectly. Human error. And, after all, most kids didn’t get 100%’s, or even that just-less-than-perfect 99% very often. I happened to be very good at playing the game called school with as little effort as possible expended, so that I could get on with the business of living and learning – on my own terms as often as I could manage.

A less obvious, but perhaps truer answer was that I didn’t WANT to get 100%s. First off, as most people who passed through (or were failed by) the American public school system, doing well may or may not endear you to the teachers, but it certainly doesn’t have that effect on the other, less fortunate, students. I was already a ‘weird kid’. I’m a weird adult, too, but that’s far more socially acceptable, and fits with the writing and the Trekkiness and the unschooling a lot better than it did at Stillwater Central School all those years ago…

There was another reason, too.

I like the number 99 a lot better than I do 100. It’s far more interesting. It’s 3 – 33 times over! And I adore the number three, and have for most of my life. Getting a 100% was boring. But a 99%? Made me smile every time I got back a paper with those magical digits on it!

Of course, I couldn’t say any of those things to my father. When he asked why it wasn’t a perfect score, he really didn’t want my answer; certainly not an honest one. There wasn’t much patience or tolerance for the value of a child’s own priorities or perspectives in my family or origin. I was expected to want to get 100s, because I was deemed capable of doing so. That I hadn’t was clearly, to my parents’ minds, my own fault, because I was lazy, or off in a dream world, or disorganized, or hadn’t worked hard enough.

There was a lot of that, in my childhood – in many, many ways, I was told and shown that I didn’t Measure Up. The stick impacting my upturned hands, or my bottom. The cracking, whiplash-inducing sting of a sudden backhand slap across my cheek. Standing in the corner, holding up the wall, being forced to listen while I was berated at a yell, with no right to yell back, or even attempt to defend myself.

Those were the big ways I knew, but there were lesser ways, too. Humiliating nicknames. Teasing comments. Belittling insults. “Physical Wreck”.”You do everything backwards.” “You couldn’t carry a tune in a bucket.”

It was clear.

I didn’t Measure Up.

Fast Forward about four decades. I’m the parent, now. I have a daughter of my own. She’s ten and a half.

How do you measure moments like this?!

Last night, she put her heels as near the hallway arch as she could, and asked me to see if she Measured Up to the mark she put there a few weeks ago.

She’s maybe a quarter of an inch taller, now.

For her, that’s Measuring Up.

She’s never gone to school; never had a parent demand to know why she didn’t do better on that test. We support and mention the many things she’s good at. Nobody’s good at everything, though, and we make sure she knows that we don’t need her to be. We love her, like her, and respect her as she is. Where she flounders, we try to be there to offer assistance and support – and acceptance.

So, to her, Measuring Up isn’t about us being proud of her, or about her winning our love and affection. It’s more important that she be comfortable with herself, and she has our love and affection no matter what – even in her least shining moments.

Measuring Up, for her, is all about those marks on the wall, and what she can do today that she couldn’t, a year or a month or a week or a day ago…

And there’s something very healing in that, for the little girl who still lives inside her mother.

What does Measuring Up mean to you? Does it evoke childhood memories? Make you consider your professional life? Your love life? Your bank account? How tall you’d be in those heels in the store window, and if they have them in your size?

I’m listening, and I promise not to grade your response!

Jottin’ my way through January!

January 11. 2015: Renewed Clarity

Come ROW with us!

So, how’s the weather, one week in?

It’s pipe-freezing cold here, and that leads me to new ways of doing and seeing…many revelations and insights. A half-birthday for my best girl. Many projects, many ideas. Lots to write, not much to say…so on with it!

January Update #2:

  • Goals attained: blue with strikethrough: 14

  • Goals in progress: green: 24.5

  • Goals-in-waiting: red: 19

Focuses:

  • Revisions: Chameleon’s Dish; The IDIC Romance; and “Morning Coffee”.

  • Write1Sub1: Terrance’s Story (for Kifo Island Chronicles);“Morning Coffee”.

  • Oregon Trip: Planning and preparing.

Writing with a generous heart…

Writing:

Write1Sub1:

Write rough draft of Terrance’s story (for Kifo Island Chronicles).

  • Reread backstories for two related characters.
  • Reread Barry’s Cheat Sheet.

Submit “Morning Coffee” to World Unknown Review.

  • Reread draft.

Kifo Island Chronicles:

Sort stories into novella threads; choose three.

Complete background information for at least one, using Cathy Yardley‘s Rock Your Plot.

Star Trek Chronology Project:

Complete current viewing of Star Trek: Enterprise.

  • 11pm Saturday.

Rewatch Season 1; taking notes and beginning story list.

  • 1/31 stories.
  • Several ideas percolating.

The IDIC Romance:

Research fan fiction sites.

Choose one for first submission.

  • Saved Rules for W5C; skimmed.

A-Z travel posts:

Create list of A-Z post topics.

Trueborn Warp/Weft series:

Sketch notes for next volume in each series.

  • Ideas forming for Warp volume.

Write at least 750 words daily:

Use 750words.com for freewriting and to chart progress.

  • 10/31 days.

Where “A Splash of Red” now lives!

Editing:

Chameleon’s Dish:

Revise all plot points for Chameleon’s Dish (6.5 scenes).

  • Completed final resolution scene.
  • .5/6.5 January scenes completed.

  • Began Midpoint scene 1/3.

The IDIC Romance:

Complete revision pass for “Tigress T’Pol” as WIPpet project.

  • Revised “Whatever This Is”, and posted.
  • Extenuating Circumstances”: Rough revision and highlighting.

Combine “Breaking Protocol”, “Mystery Woman”, and “Magical Possibilities” into new rough draft.

  • Combined stories – precursor to rough compilation draft.
  • New, pregnant plot tribble!

Write1Sub1:

Revise “Morning Coffee”.

  • Reread draft materials.

Choose at least 1 more story for 2015 revision.

M heart has her name written on it!

Social Media:

Blog Maintenance:

Maintain regular posting schedule, comments, and visits.

  • One late JusJoJan post.
  • Some comments answered.

Build blog queues:

Write at least 1 general queue post:

  • Epiphany! I know how to get this done!

Write 1 “special” WIPpet.

  • Selected snippet; created rough template.

Blogging Action Plan:

Review Blogging Action Plan; highlight for revision.

Review Lovely Chaos Sidebar; make list of desired changes.

Twitter and Facebook:

Visit at least twice weekly.

  • 1 /2 – Twitter.
  • 2/2 - Facebook.

Pinterest, LinkedIn, WANATribe, ect:

Visit at least one weekly.

Share posts – mine, and others’:

Share at least 3 items a week.

  • 2/3: Facebook writer page; ROW80 group with hashtags.

Blog views and followers:

Increase blog views to 25 on a semi-regular basis (at least 10 times this month).

  • 9/31.

I wrote this!!

Hometending:

Family room reset:

Clean the three toy bins (trains; gears; misc.).

Clean the Lego and battle game drawers.

Kitchen reset:

Clean all kitchen counters to left of sink.

  • Did a bit.

Rehome pans and serving dishes to pantry.

Inhabit my study:

Clean and organize floor.

  • A bit.

Replace calendar and candle.

  • Both in use.

Use the space at least once per week.

  • Warmer than my bedroom Wednesday night. Spent several hours.

Personal Administration:

Clean, organize, and backup Desktop and Writing Bullpen files’ sort Leisure Time Reading file.

Maintain inbox below 100 messages at least twice weekly.

  • Yes. Twice this week.

Homeschool Administration:

Complete second quarter homeschool reports for both kids, due March 15.

Photo digitalization:

Scan Oregon travel photos; save in organized files with backup.

  • Nothing new.

ROW80:

Submit sponsor post.

  • Began drafting.

Keep visits up-to-date.

  • Caught up.

Goofy for fries!

Lifetending:

Oregon vacation:

Make list of what needs doing.

  • Developed rough action categories.
  • First steps taken.

Make schedule for accomplishing list items.

Do what can be done in January; evaluate weekly.

Kindle ebooks:

Read and write reviews for 2 books on my Writers I Know list.

NNWM local group:

Continue attending write-ins whenever possible.

  • Attended latter part of Sunday’s write-in.

Interact at least weekly online.

Meditation:

Experiment with guided/unguided meditation at least once a week.

  • About 10 minutes attending to thoughts/experimenting with mantra.

TBR Stacks:

Read 1 book bedroom TBR pile.

Smart Change:

Make a list of goals to focus on, using the methods in this book.

Starfleet:

Reconnect with USS Albany group.

My beloveds:

One on one time with each, at least twice per month, doing something of value to us both.

  • Workout, snuggles, and couple time.
  • Lise half birthday Girls’ Day.
  • Miah late-night snack and conversation while watching Friends.
  • Movie w/Accomplice.
  • 2 /2 for all.

Paying it Forward:

Complete at least two beta reads and promotional blog posts for other writers as requested.

  • Read first scene of beta read 1 /2.

 

Kindle Girl

Fitness and Nutrition:

Workouts:

At the Y or a strenuous activity at least weekly.

  • Done Tuesday.

Wii Fit at least once weekly, for 15 minutes minimum.

  • 17 minutes, Saturday night.

Walk, dance, swim, or physical play:

With children, spouse, and/or dog at least weekly.

  • Workout with Jeremiah.

Practice:

Find out t’ai chi and yoga class schedules.

Intuitive Eating:

Read.

Cooking/ Food Preparation:

Develop a repertoire of 4 self-made food options that support my nutritional goals.

Maintain weekly nutritional quotas; adapt as needed.

  • There will be a post about these tomorrow!

Weight:

Maintain or reduce weight; continue monthly checks.

Take a ride on the ROWboat!

Ten and a half years of this suits me fine!

SoCS and JusJoJan Day 10: To Read or Not to Read – Is There a Question?

 

Come join the flow! =)

 

Jottin’ through January!

 

Today’s Just Jot it January entry is also my Stream of Consciousness Saturday post, with the theme ‘opposite’, because they do seem to feed one another, and because I have a lot of other projects in the works, so any time I can make one piece of writing do two things at once, I count that solidly in the ‘Win’ column of life. 

One problem, though – I’m feeling the need for a fresh cup of coffee before I really get into this post, so, if you’ll all kindly excuse me for a minute or three, I’m going to go tend to that need, and then get back to this….

Drat! Need to wait for a fresh pot; we were out…

So, where was I – oh, yes. That’s right.

Reading. Or not reading.

When I first thought of today’s post, I thought of this:

Time stamp 3:44 for “The Line”.

I met George Takei once, decades back, at a Star Trek convention’s Ten Forward lounge – OK, a room with tables, chairs, beverages and snacks, and Trek-oriented art. Of all the celebrities at the event, he was the only one who mingled with the fans. It’s not really accurate to say I ‘met’ him, either, since I was much shyer and less confident in those days.

But I sat and listened to him chat amiably with others for close to an hour, and I soaked up his deep cultured voice, his joy, and his stories. If I had the chance again, I would join the conversation, but, even as it was, I was glad for the opportunity.

But I’ve gotten tangential, and I’m going to blame that cuppa I haven’t gotten yet, and go see if I can take care of that now – please feel free to chat amongst yourselves about how scattered I am today…

OK! I’ve got some sweet caffeine in a mug, and I’m ready to get back to this post.

George’s line, “I read,” has cracked me up since the first time I heard it. So much in those two simple words. In the absence of personal experience, George reads – and he knows, because of that.

But are those the only ways of learning?

My daughter is fascinated with wildlife. She spends considerable time observing nature in our yard, and in the places we go. But her passion goes much deeper than her reach can extend. We don’t live on the shoreline, at the poles, in a desert, in a rainforest, on a mountain, underwater, or in a different time. She simply can’t get to all the places where the creatures she wants to learn about live.

Annalise’s nature art, created during a performance of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, August 2014.

She can, of course, read about them, and she does. That’s been a constant in her life since she needed others to do the reading. Years before she could do the reading herself, she was memorizing information about mastodont, gorillas, aye-ayes, and many other species.

But simply reading about animals, or looking at images, leaves a great deal unexplored. A book can’t give the sound or feel of the animal’s life – its movement, its voice, the immediate reality of its existence. Books are limited in that way. They’re static.

My daughter watches many nature documentaries, uses voice and tracking applications on her Kindle, explores their anatomy, and live web cams. She plays as wild animals in different simulator programs, and all of these things feed her play, her imagination, and her learning. She builds herself habitats in the yard and in her bedroom. She is a mother animal who must tend to her (usually stuffed) offspring. She speaks confidently with the staff at pet stores, where she has a particular interest in exotic animals – snakes, sugar gliders, scorpions, and tarantulas.

Yes, reading is a wonderful means of learning – but it’s not the only one. Learning and growing require a rich stew of experiences and information, well seasoned with thought, observation, and experimentation.

So –

To read, or not to read?

Why not both?

Watching (not reading) Hamlet, at ages 6 and almost-9.

#SparkleFriday, With the Kids at a Toy Store

Are you tired of the Black Friday hype? Have you sparkled lately?

I’m not sure about where you live, but here in upstate New York, the “Black Friday” push started over a week before Thanksgiving…way too early for us, even with a generous dose of snow to beautify Wednesday, and give a Christmasy feel to things. I’m not a fan of the rush to buy, buy, buy, and I tend to balk when marketers try to get me to do it on their schedule. Coercion isn’t big in my world…

But a few weeks ago, my friend August McLaughlin came up with a wonderful idea that sparked my holiday cheer – #SparkleFriday. What’s that, you say?

Glad you asked! It’s a simple idea, really. Here’s what August has to say about it:

Many of our friends and most of our relatives live thousands of miles away. *cue Beatles music* So in lieu of a conventional housewarming party, we’re asking our family and friends—including you!—to join us virtually in an act-of-kindness celebration. We’ve chosen Black Friday, a day on which it’s easy to get caught up in or disgruntled by commercialism, figuring we could all use some added cheer.

Here’s how you can participate:

Between now and 11/28, conduct an act of kindness.

On 11/28, share a description and/or a photo on Instagram, Facebook and/or Twitter using the hashtag #SparkleFriday. (Writers, feel free to post yours on your blog!)

Check out others’ posts by searching for the hashtag on the 28th—sharing, liking/favoriting and commenting on your favorites.

Pop back to my blog the following week where I’ll share highlights and give away prizes for the most creative, impactful and entertaining acts!

See? Simple, sparkly, and powerful!

We decided to make an event of a donation to Toys for Tots, with Jeremiah and Annalise each choosing a nice gift that would add a little sparkle to another child’s Christmas of Hanukkah.

Below, in images and captions, is our happy foray into a seldom-explored realm for our family- a big toy store on Black Friday. I was not only thrilled to see the consideration the kids put into the gifts, but the happy way they interacted with others along the way. It’s also interesting to me to see the way their approach to toy stores has changed, since they were little…and that led to the realization that, in what might seem like the blink of an eye, to me, toy stores aren’t going to hold nearly the same allure for either of them.

But today, these growing-up kids gave me a #SparkleFriday, and now we all want to share it with you!

A bit of exploration and debate…

 

Jeremiah chooses a physics-oriented gift…

 

Annalise chooses some scary fashion!

 

Anonymous Donor?

 

#SparkleFriday is for sharing, and scaring!

 

A little #SparkleFriday in our cart….

 

A Helpful #SparkleFriday Spirit.

 

A double shot of generosity…

 

Giving with her whole self!

 

#SparkleFriday grin!

I hope you enjoyed watching this as much as we did living it!

If you missed #SparkleFriday, why not commit an act of kindness today, tomorrow- or anytime? You’ll add a little more of this to the world!

A JOYful August!

Coffee and Conversation: Jo’s Monday Walk to the NY State Museum!

Grab a cuppa and a comfy seat, and let’s chat a while! It’s time for Coffee and Conversation!

When I was six, my family was driving on a highway late at night. Streaks of headlights and taillights painted the dark. For the first time, I realized that each car held people living lives as important to them as mine was to me.

I wanted to know what those lives were, and to share my own..

Yes, I’m getting to this a little late in the day. It’s been a little odd today – normally, my Accomplice in Mischief, who is a chef, has Monday off.  But today he worked a local food festival, and, for the first time, our 13 year old son went as his assistant.  I’m also experiencing the distraction of having written over 10,000 words of my NaNoWriMo novel in a single day – a personal best for me!  

So, I’m a little out of sync…but I’m hear, making this post while watching Castle and contemplating the next scenes of my novel. But I am here, and I’m inviting you to come along with the children and I as we visit the New York State Museum, in Albany. Originally, I was going to share the entire visit – but, well, this is our favorite museum, and we make the most of every visit. Today, we’re just going to walk from the parking lot next door, around the corner, in the door, and as far as the rest rooms…I promise, future walks will carry us into the museum proper, to explore…as a matter of fact, I’ve got many photos, from many trips, so we can go back again, and again, and…

Oh, look.  There’s a parking space.  Let’s pull in here, gather up our stuff, and get ready to see how much fun we can have with two unschooling kids and their mom, just walking in to the museum…

It was a lovely October day, and a pleasant, familiar walk…

 

 

Sometimes, you’ve just got to cozy up with a shale wall….and give it a nice snuggly hug.

 

 

The thirteen year old in my life makes me work for photos…

 

Okay, we’ve seen some wall-hugging and camera-dodging, and now we’re ready to continue on, through the parking area and around the corner. While the kids lead the way, I’ll snap a few pictures of the trees, with the first hints of fall color touching their leaves, the museum against a gorgeous early fall sky, and the skyline beyond the Empire State Plaza.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And now we round the corner, and the museum is just ahead. But…

 

 

That’s apparently the perfect time to hug your brother – whether he especially wants you to, or not…

 

 

 

Of course, when your sister is your friend, you sometimes go along with these spontaneous public displays of affection.

 

 

 

And then, with walls and siblings and Mom (not pictured) feeling happily hugged, we arrive at the entrance – yup, a bona-fide revolving door which beckons us in…well, eventually. I mean, this IS a revolving door, and what would be the fun of not taking an extra spin or two….?

 

 

 

And now we’re inside, thinking about what to see first….take a look around the lobby, and feel free to offer your suggestions…we’ll be right back, after a quick visit to the rest room, which, after its recent remodeling, looks a little like a modern train car, to me…

 

 

 

So, a little birdie told me that that’s it for today….

But we’ve got a little bit of unfinished business, so let me refresh your beverage…

 

We’ve got a few choices for the next museum installment, and I’d love your opinion!

  1. Adirondack Wildlife
  2. Ancient Peoples
  3. Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries
  4. Epic Checkers
  5. Building Stuff
  6. Canned Food Scultpture
  7. Carousel
  8. Minerals and Gems
  9. Discovery Center  Just drop a number into that nifty little comment box down there!

 

How about you? Do you have a favorite museum or gallery? Want to chat about it? I’ll get another round; let’s talk! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

OctPoWriMo Day 23: I Forget to Write a Poem

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Hello, and welcome to OctPoWriMo, Day Twenty-Three!

What’s OctPoWriMo, you ask? Well, it’s a whole month of poetic creation – 31 poems in 31 days. It’s the creative baby of Morgan Dragonwillow and Julie Jordan Scott.

This year, I intend to follow all the prompts, and get the joy of discovery…

I hope you’ll stop by, settle in, and find a little bit of magic here!

Today’s prompt is “Another chapter begins”. There is a list of phrase prompts:

  • Another chapter begins…

  • Turn the page….

  • And then there was….

  • I begin again….

  • And then there was….

  • Now it is time to write….

I had an idea. But then something happened.

I forgot to write a poem.

It’s not that I meant to forget. A few times, I remembered. While I was in the middle of plotting a scene. When I was in the middle of untangling a revision passage. Just as my daughter came in to tell me that her tadpole, who recently sprouted four functional legs, wasn’t in her tank (a plastic bin with no lid, which was fine for a legless tadpole…but not a froglet who just learned how to hop…

She thought her new little friend was gone forever, and was so happy when I found one frightened looking wee amphibian behind the tank. So there was a slightly hurried preparation of the frog habitat, and now PomPom the frog has a new, bigger, safer home…

And I was writing – getting my gestating novel outline ready for NaNoWriMo, rvising a short story I will be submitting this week, answering blog comments….

And forgetting, again and again, to write a poem – until I looked at the clock, and it was almost 9pm.

And I remembered…

And found that maybe I hadn’t forgotten, after all.

So here is my rather tongue-in-cheek poem for today…

Image credit: Julie Jordan Scott.

And I Forget to Write a Poem

Another chapter begins…

And I move through my novel outline,

And forget to write a poem

Because other words and images

Dance through my head

Plots and subplots

Complex conundrums

Setting up for the third act

And I forget to write a poem

Turn the page….

I move through my short story revision

And forget to write a poem

Piecing together a world

Of stooping hawks and child selves

Each word polished

Seeking gleaming truth

Beauty brought forth

From ugly memory

The climax nearing

And I forget to write a poem

And then there was….

The memory card

Filled with pictures

And I forget to write a poem

Nightmare Fairy and Chica

Leaves a frost painted

Blanket on chilling ground

Edit to bring out the

Magic in each one

A thousand words

To describe them

And I forget to write a poem

I begin again….

Blog comments like a leaf pile

And I forget to write a poem

Conversations long and deep

With friends a world away

New folks stop by and

Spread new joy

I engage

And I forget to write a poem

And then there are….

Son and daughter who love me

And I forget to write a poem

Hugs and chatting

The tadpole turned into a frog

Horses killed by a were- cat

“Can I help you with anything?

I feel helpful today”

Bigger now than yesterday

And I forget to write a poem

Now it is time to write….

Yes, time to write a poem

Of plotting and revising and

Editing and connecting

And marveling at

My babies grown big

Now is the time to write

And I find I’ve written a poem

You mean you don’t have a Nightmare Fairy at your house? It’s OK, I’ll share mine! =D

Who else remembered to OctPoWriMo today?