Aug 12, 2014

Two Years !

Two years ago today, I posted my first Verse In Progress update.  

Back then I was keeping track of two blogs, one for the visits to Ghana and one titled, Poetry Repair. I knew long term that didn't make sense. 

Why writing, when did activity start, how come ? 

Did the love of writing grow over time? 

It started in 8th grade at Pitcher Junior High School in Miss Young’s English class.  The assignment to keep a daily journal for a period of two or three months; the thin yellow spiral notebook on the bookshelf right behind where I'm typing these words now. 

Horray for wonderful English teachers ! ! ! 

The first entry on April 25th 1973 and they continue until June 5th  of the same year.  

The mind of an 8th grader; when I read over some of the entries, most are floods of emotions soaking the paper. I make many references to my Mom being sick, but never is there consideration in these entries that her illness is terminal.  

Perhaps the practice of writing emotions, spilling fear, expressing anger and many times documenting adolescent immaturity did indeed help with what was to come less than a year later.  

The daily observation and recording of life helped me, it provided comfort. The practice of observation, the act of recording what was in my heart and mind,  my attempt in 1973 to understand and cope. 

I had no idea at the time that this English Composition assignment would become a significant part of who I am, what I love and am grateful for in life. 

Certainly the birth of poetry in my heart came with the life changing experience of my Mother's death. The first significant poem I wrote, Forever She’ll Be Gone, was in anticipation of her death and read by Father Ponce at her funeral mass at St. Joseph’s Church in Barstow, CA.  

Life certainly is different for all, what is consistent is that we all experience love and loss, we all know black and white, hot and cold, truth and lies. We all know up, down, inside, out, humor, anger, bitter, sweet, calm, rage, wisdom, foolishness, and on and on and on. 

What we don’t know is each other’s perspectives and priorities of this shared universal humanity. 

What matters, what is important, what brings joy, clarity, inspiration, humor to our lives ? By writing I am observing and always learning, it helps me understand and appreciate, it certainly helps me connect and share. 

Some people play tennis, some grow rare orchids, others dance, some restore and sail old boats that belonged to their Fathers, for everyone it's different.  

For me the written word, ideas, thoughts, observations, poetry, perspectives,  stories, essays, I love all of this. 

The practice of writing, the daily appointment with the blank page or screen, an invitation I extend to myself and accept with great joy. 

I look forward to many more years of posts.  Thank you Miss Young !