2011, it seems, brings the inundation. It’s the stormiest spring I can recall, with thunderstorms and the threat of tornadoes — tornadoes, here!!! — in the forecast every other week, at least. It’s a far cry from past years, soft rain and snow even in April, mild weather throughout 2009 followed by last year’s long, hot, and dry summer. Used to be the weather was one thing we could, to some extent at least, count on. Is there no consistency anywhere to be found?
My struggles with words. This is consistent. So, yes, there is some strange comfort in that, perhaps.
Spring drags on sometimes, more for some than others. My little sister, Halle, is desperate for summer, the end of seventh grade, some freedom of her own. I remember those days. It’s different now, in this thing we call real life or adulthood: there is so little change with the seasons, sometimes it’s hard to tell that anything is really changing at all. Sometimes I miss the definitive framework of the school year, which makes it more or less impossible for events and occasions to sneak up on us. Is it May already? Nearly mid-May? If not for certain earmarks on my time — Halle’s bemoaning her last few weeks of school, Mothers’ Day — I’d not have noticed.
This makes me wonder if I’m missing something, if there are things I should be paying attention to that I miss on a regular basis.
I miss Molly, that I know. (And no, this isn’t pandering, though I’ve already said this blog is for her in the first place — it’s true.) Without someone here to drag me out on the town occasionally it’s far too easy for me to get lost in my own world, my own thoughts, locked up in the world of the mind that I construct for myself. I don’t know that it’s an entirely healthy place; I need someone to bring me some semblance of balance. For the past few weeks I haven’t spent a great deal of time with anyone outside my own family, and not enough time with them, even, seeing as I sleep into the afternoons and spend most of my waking hours alone, in the kitchen till dawn, waiting for someone to ring the bell. Lately, no one comes.
I’m alone here with my music, intentions, myself. I listen to words better-written than my own, and think of what I mean to accomplish here.
So, Molly: what now? What purpose does this exercise serve, when I’m just brain-dumping onto the screen, getting nowhere? I feel like I must have something in me worth saying, worth sharing, or at least I know you believe I do. So how do I access it?
Alright, how’s this for a start: I’ve begun writing poetry again. Not the sort of thing I was ready to share until I felt I had composed something worth sharing, worth putting out into the world, however small my world might be, right now.
Sonnets are out of fashion nowadays, but they were my first love. Is that unusual? It was Shakespeare who first reeled me in, taught me the power of a well-constructed line, made me want to construct something, similarly magical, of my own. Not to the marriage of true minds… I don’t know how far I’ll have to go, how long I’ll have to strain and fumble with syllables, to achieve something modestly akin to that. But here you have it: my best effort, to date.
Sonnet for the Smoldering
The first time is the hardest. Wrapped in flame
and bellowing like a furnace, acrid smoke
and an exquisite ache razors your frame:
you are reduced to ash. You might invoke
the name of something sacred: it won’t change
anything. When the embers cool, you start
your slow reconstitution. You trace the strange
new boundaries of your desiccated heart.
And so you burn. Time and again you burn,
and each time you return from ash, it is
as something far more delicate. You learn
to make do with your diminished self. You miss
the losses less each day. That is to say,
you began with too much of you, anyway.
I’m putting my ideas out into the world, and learning that some people like them, which is a strange and wonderful feeling. The encouragement I dearly need. Stats show me that I have readers, though nobody comments; that means I have an audience of sorts, and maybe an anonymous audience is a good thing — after all, that’s what most writers have had all along. It’s a strange and wonderful feeling, too, to know that people out there are listening. Whoever you are.