Sunday, April 10, 2016

Gumption

A to Z Challenge: G

What it takes for some of us to wake up every morning.
To keep going when we can't or don't want to.
What it takes for some of us to pull out in front of that car traveling down the road at 89 miles per hour.
To think they will stop for us.
What it takes to not make everything about us and we don't mean to do it but we do.
To think the world doesn't revolve around us and only us.
What it takes to hope for a bright future when the light is so dim that you can't even see your breath in front of you on a cold night.
To think it's not what's owed, it's just what we want and what's wrong with chasing what we want.
What it takes to live because to figure out why we are here is beyond what we can comprehend.
To think it's just silly gumption
that keeps us going.

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Fartin' Around

A to Z Challenge: F

Well, it appears that while swimming in my angst and conflict this week, not producing the letters on the days necessary did, in fact, get my booted for the blog sign up list for the A to Z Blog Challenge. No one to blame but myself for that. I knew that missing five letters in a row would get me booted. I guess I had hoped that while I had a chunk of time to sit down and catch up, I'd actually be able to catch up.

Hmmm. I am continuing anyhow. Being a former journalist, deadlines and the importance there of, you think, would resonate with me. They have, but I am also a procrastinator. I've spent too much time as of late just fartin' around, not doing what I should be doing, not doing what I need to do, and now here I sit, shaking my head.

I'm not one of those writers who "write every day," as if you can't already tell that. Shameful, I know. The first thing you'll learn in any creative writing class, in any workshop, by any famous writer, is that you have to write every day.

Me? I chose to fart around every day. I get too caught up in my thoughts, trying to logically sort stuff out that I have to fix, and that taints my ability, more often than not to actually churn out productive writing stuff.

How I've managed to even get published is beyond me. How I've won a few contests, I'll never know. At some point, I've sat down and obviously written every day; edited, revised, had beta readers and all that.

This was not my original F topic, but I felt suspicious in my lacking of producing the scheduled alphabet, and upon further research, I called myself out with my lazy behavior (checking the blog list to see if I was removed).

I guess it doesn't matter to note that the last week, I've spent it teaching, working, and job hunting? And yet, it only takes a minute, doesn't it? To sit down and type out a blog post. Sometimes a minute; if you are like me and write on the fly most of the time.

The blogging gods are shaking their fingers at me. I get it. Lesson learned. I suck at committing. I should be committed, speaking of that word. Ha. Not really, but yeah, lesson well learned. I need to be more diligent, as I once was in life, at following through with stuff.

My original F was failure. Being one. Becoming a. The essence of. The concept of. I guess the same applies here: fartin' around can lead to failure.

Okay, done beating myself up. Time to dust off the stones and dirt and just continue on. I'll finish out the month because now I have to. I'm pissed enough at myself, and while I've mildly failed at this point, I don't want to fail altogether. I don't want to fail so much and so deep that I can't pick myself back up and dust off the stones and dirt; and yes, this is a small comparison to my actual life as well and where I currently am.

And spellcheck will highlight "learned," but not "fartin'"... interesting.

Envy

A to Z Challenge: E

Perhaps a little poem for the letter E? I try not to envy those around me for the things they obtain, own, have, or work for. One man's treasure is not mine to want. However, I have, at times, spoken out about the means one might use to gain something because it appeared they earned what they did because they were a favorite, or they felt they were entitled to it, or because it was just given to them "because...".

But, I learned the hard way that those "treasures" and how those people gained such treasures are not mine to judge either. And being vocal about any of it will get you no where. People will take your outspokenness and use it against you; put words in your mouth that you didn't say, call you jealous. Again with the conflict.

But we don't live in a world where we are treated fairly and equally, do we?

So, envy... not usually a thing with me, but speaking my mind is. Regardless, I guess envy is a wasted event, as is speaking your mind too often, so how do you know you need to step back?

When you look in the mirror and notice that your eyes have changed...


Envy the Exterior

Hear the humor in our lies
What we tell ourselves to get by

Drink with me good fellows:
Let us sip of God's sweet wine
What sins must we create
before this glass breaks?
(and we bleed)
The cavity, this pain...

I walk the streets of this dirty town,
damning the beast who created me

Had he no faith that I couldn't breathe?
Tragic misfortunes -
we've all got a story to tell and a story to sell
but nothing is worth more than this broken dollar
I've got in my pocket
(with In God We Trust embossed in green)

Green, like the color of my eyes
(and I swear, I could never lie)
A lone girl steps in front of me
(she's crossed my vision once before)
“She's a statistic waiting to happen.”
Am I the next Jane Doe?

Yesterday, I checked the gas station mirror
to make sure my eyes had not changed

This is what we have become
Spare me your pity and Christian lies
I've been hungry a time or two
Have you?

Hunger:
frames the mind
and thickens the blood
Throw your Bible books out the window
and go pray on someone else's shame
(or is it prey?)

Sip of the sweet life, good fellows
Is this all there is?

Yes, lone bleeder;
this and what we tell ourselves to get by

Dedication

A to Z Challenge: D

I don't speak or write about my college students ever, or college students in general. Maybe once or twice I wrote a blog post about one class and their reading list midterms one semester. I don't make social media comments about teaching or students in general. I'd never do that anyhow, target one student by name or otherwise. To avoid anyone ever thinking I am targeting them, should any of my students come across anything I do write and or post, I'd rather they find nothing at all so they won't think "it's about them." I might "like" a teacher oriented meme or something like that, but that's rare. So I just keep my thoughts on education, teaching, students, all that, to myself. It's easier.

However, when thinking of the letter D, many words come to mind that I want to write about, but each word I came up with would mean I have to dive into personal things that I just don't want to do right now.

So then, the word dedication came to mind. And while it applies to me and what I'm trying to achieve at this point in my life, I want to focus on the student aspect of that word and maybe share a general thought or two about it.

Conflict

A to Z Challenge: C

Well, that's great. Two letters in and I drop the ball. I'm not surprised. I've been dealing with much conflict and it has not proven to be productive. So now I'm trying to catch up.

Conflict is something that all writers should be familiar with. Conflict is the driving force of any good story. Characters have conflicts with themselves, each other, mother nature. Characters have conflicts with things out of their control.

Real humans, us, writer or not, have the same conflict. Right now I'm struggling with myself. I'm not usually a person that will speak of my faith or religious beliefs in a public forum. Suffice to say though, the last few months, I've been praying. Crying, praying, crying more, praying more. Looking for that light. The conflict is that I made a choice several months back to do something, and since, the struggle to try to achieve what I wanted or hoped as not gone at all the way I'd hoped or even somewhat hoped.

Brick walls everywhere. Come the beginning of May, and this is the truly fearful part, it will most certainly all crash down, what's left of the walls. They've been crumbling, but I haven't broken through. Come May, I fear they will crash down but not because I finally broke through, but because there is nothing left.

So now I wrestle with decisions I've made, paths I've chosen. There's no quick fix. There's no looking back. I'm both my own protagonist and my own antagonist, battling myself.

May's around the corner and I've run out of time. The conflict will climax, but what will the results be? I almost don't want to see. I anticipate the worst of course, and my hope and faith cups are pretty empty at this point. But there's always a "maybe things will work out."

Right now, all I can do is move on to letter D.