Monday, 18 March 2019
Over the last couple of months, I've read lots of short stories of various genres and watched a mega load of movies. When I'm not at my best I find that my mind is all over the place and sitting down for hours to write is not possible. Even if I have an organized workplace and the correct tools to hand, I can only concentrate and focus for an hour at a time, tops. Therefore, to occupy my mind, I have taken the opportunity to emerge myself in other peoples work.
I didn't realise since I'm not a regular movie goer, or TV viewer, that there were so many movies alike. Duh. Yes, I can hear you ask where have you been? But, it's not until I've watched so many, one after the other, that it has become obvious as to how similar all stories actually are.
"So, if it's already written, been dramatised, why should we read another fiction piece, go to the movies and theatre or watch TV?" I asked myself. The thing is, each of these creations has a uniqueness. That special twist, or turn that makes the piece stand out from the crowd.
Just like this ironing-board standing in the middle of nowhere! Definitely standing out from the crowd. Unique!
Monday, 11 March 2019
The last week I've been trying to get my life back into some resemblance of normal. Yes, I wake up in the morning and have a plan for the day. However, the simplest of tasks seem to take forever and my imagination makes mountains out of molehills.
Take Friday past for example, it was the first time I had ventured outside since my accident, other than going to the hospital for check-ups. Now, I was very excited about this outing, because I was going to the hairdressers. Something that I normally do every four weeks, but it had been eleven weeks since I had visited and I had taken on the trait of a vampire in this time. No, I wasn't biting necks, drinking blood, or light was passing through my body, but I was avoiding mirrors.
My appointment was made for ten o'clock and for a week in my mind I had been planning my outing. Firstly, going out in public with my now very grey hair was a concern. Wearing a paper-bag with holes cut into it for my eyes was an option. A stupid option sure, but it was an option.
Seriously though, I was rather anxious about the two stairs that I needed to negotiate to enter the main area of the salon. In my mind the stairs were fairly steep and I couldn't remember as to whether there was a handrail, or not.
After a short walk from where the car was parked, which was another new experience, I entered the salon. Did I have a mountain to climb to get my long awaited cut and dye. No, it was all in my imagination, I now feel a new woman and I'm strutting like a peacock.
Friday, 8 March 2019
Today is, International Women's Day, and there are so many women who are an inspiration to us all. One such woman who impacted women's history is George Eliot. Don't let the name mislead you, because the name was used by the English writer, Mary Anne Evans.
A novelist, poet, journalist and editor, Mary Anne wrote seven novels under her pen name. She was a writer who wanted to be taken seriously and in Victorian times that was hard for a woman, therefore the pseudonym.
So, here is a poem by this leading writer, who did it for the girls.
You love the roses, so do I. I wish
The sky would rain down roses, as they rain
From off the shaken bush. Why will it not?
Then all the valley would be pink and white
And soft to tread on. They would fall as light
As feathers, smelling sweet, and it would be
Like sleeping and like waking all at once!
George Eliot 1819-80
Tuesday, 5 March 2019
It's 'World Book Day' in the UK, Thursday 7 March. A day for readers, authors, illustrators, editors, publishers and all things in the writing world to celebrate stories.
www.worldbookday.com is a charity whose mission is to give every child and young person a book of their own and their website has fantastic ideas as to how to get kids involved in this celebration. From readathons, designing a National Book Token, to being a guest of the BBC for a WBD live lesson and all school children will be also given a book token.
One other activity is for children to dress-up as a favourite character from a book, which I am all for. However, there is one thing that is getting on my nerves and please forgive me while I explain myself.
The fact is that lots of supermarkets and various online retailers are now selling an abundance of costumes for adults and children alike to wear on this day. What do I have against this? Well, the problem I have with this is that there are so many children living in poverty all over the world, many of whom will never be told stories, or own a book. The retail price of some of these outfits are from £15.00 upwards. Hell, that could go a long way to providing reading, and writing materials for children in many classrooms. As well as filling little empty bellies in a time when we have seen a rise in food banks in the western world.
Making costumes is fun, seriously, recycle old clothing, get out the bin bags and duct tape. Forget lining the coffers of the retailers, remember some of these outfits on sale will be made in conditions we could never imagine. #FairTrade
This day isn't about making profit, it is a yearly event organised by UNESCO to promote reading, publishing and copyright. We're now in danger of forgetting what the whole day is about, as is happening with Easter and Christmas, commercialisation is taking over.
World Book Day is all about demonstrating that #Readingispower.
Friday, 1 March 2019
I will soon walk among the trees
Listen to the songful birds and the buzz of the busy bees
Stroll along the meandering path, edged with a variety of flowers, orange and white in hue
Where I might end up I haven't got a clue
I'll appreciate nature's beauty with every step I take
Dazzled by the Spring sunshine, sparkling like diamonds on the surface of the lake
I'll fulfil a longing to take a deep breath and fill my lungs with fresh air
And be thankful that I live in this world so fair
Tuesday, 26 February 2019
Friday past, it was time for me to visit hospital once again. Seven weeks have passed since I fractured my ankle and I had no idea what was in store, meaning I was rather anxious.
Initially, on my arrival I was sent for a couple of x-rays. They would give the consultant all the information she needed to hopefully set me free of my cast.
The orthopaedic clinic, waiting-room was jam-packed with people of all ages, from schoolboys to great-grandparents. Their injuries varied from fractured ankles, legs, wrists, spines and ruptured knees.
Long waiting times at these out-patient clinics are to be expected and the strangers you find yourself sitting beside, or opposite can easily become short-term acquaintances.
Friday was no different and a chap fitted with a back brace was the first to break the uncomfortable silence. For the next two hours stories were exchanged of how injuries occurred. Some of the stories were on the tall side and laughs were raised. Others, were possibly too graphic and gasps of astonishment reverberated around the room.
The thing that was clearly obvious was that the power of storytelling brings people together, whatever misfortune they are faced with.
Cast off and this boot is made for walking! Yippee!
Monday, 18 February 2019
Tomorrow, February 19, many of our skies will be lit up by a full moon (snow). I'm featuring a poem today by New Englander poet, James Russell Lowell, because his words conjure up instantly a picture in my head of me sitting alone, looking up into a starry sky, dominated by a full moon.
The moon shines white and silent
On the mist, which, like a tide
Of some enchanted ocean
Over the wide marsh doth glide
Spreading its ghost-like billows
Silently far and wide
A vague and starry magic
Make all things mysteries
And lures the earth's dumb spirit
Up to the longing skies
I seem to hear dim whispers
And tremulous replies
The fireflies over the meadow
In pulses come and go
The elm-tree's heavy shadow
Weighs on the grass below
And faintly from the distance
The dreaming cock doth crow
All things look strange and mystic
The very bushes swell
And take wild shapes and motions
As if beneath a spell
They seem not the same lilacs
From childhood known so well
The snow of deepest silence
Over everything doth fall
So beautiful and quiet
And yet so like a pall
As if all life were ended
And rest were come to all
O wild and wondrous midnight
There is a might in thee
To make the charmed body
Almost like spirit be
And give it some faint glimpses
James Russell Lowell 1819-1891