Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Is it even okay if I don't paragraph my letters?

Writer's block is an issue here, in my world. I'm sure I'm not the only one who loves to write, but runs out of things to say as soon as there's a blank window open. For me I gotta say that writing, in this sense, is a lot like life. I am full of fantastic ideas right up until the second that I want to present them, and then they are gone. I am also full of lines and ideas as soon as the moment for them has passed. I know I'm not the only person with this problem, but at the moment I'm reminding myself of Jon from the Garfield comics.

Here I'm hoping to take the pressure off, chill the heck out, and write what I'm thinking. Originally I was planning to title this "what to expect (when you're expecting)," meaning not in pregnancy, but in life. I don't have a good reason for changing my mind, except that it felt too strange. Despite the fact that I hope to be a mother someday, thinking of pregnancy (and especially childbirth) makes me rather nauseated*. Euphoranges was the next idea, and bleuphoria, bluephoria, bleuphoranges, youfouryeah, youforyeah, oophoria... I'm already embarrassed by them--I try to remind myself (when I remember) to stay the hell away from title gimmicks. It's obviously a serious weakness of mine. The thought, though, was that I love orange, I love oranges, and I was thinking of Anne Sexton's poem, "Words." The line "daisies and bruises" is from that poem:

"Be careful of words,
even the miraculous ones.
For the miraculous we do our best,
sometimes they swarm like insects
and leave not a sting but a kiss.
They can be as good as fingers.
They can be as trusty as the rock
you stick your bottom on.
But they can be both daisies and bruises.
Yet I am in love with words.
They are doves falling out of the ceiling.
They are six holy oranges sitting in my lap.
They are the trees, the legs of summer,
and the sun, its passionate face.
Yet often they fail me.
I have so much I want to say,
so many stories, images, proverbs, etc.
But the words aren't good enough,
the wrong ones kiss me.
Sometimes I fly like an eagle
but with the wings of a wren.
But I try to take care
and be gentle to them.
Words and eggs must be handled with care.
Once broken they are impossible
things to repair."

But to explain why I liked the idea of euphoria, I'll show you some definitions from dictionary.com:
1. a feeling of happiness, confidence, or well-being sometimes exaggerated in pathological states as mania.
2. A feeling of great happiness or well-being.
and my two favorites,
3. 1727, a physician's term for "condition of feeling healthy and comfortable (especially when sick)," and
4. a feeling of well-being or elation; especially : one that is groundless, disproportionate to its cause, or inappropriate to one's life situation.

I feel that a lot of the time, this could be applied to me. And at times when it couldn't, I wish it could. I pretend or tell myself that it could. I am thinking, though, particularly of a migraine I had a couple of weeks (or so--my sense of time in these situations is horrendous) ago. I didn't vomit that time, which was nice, but I was utterly miserable for an evening, and then suddenly the skies cleared, and the headache was gone. (This is usually how my migraines go, I think.) I felt completely fantastic. I felt like I could fly. I felt like leaping off the sofa and dancing around the room, but in the interest of caution, I stayed on the couch and finished my tea. My sister laughed at me. Incidentally, this is also my reaction when my liver finishes (or, possibly, nearly finishes) metabolising all of the alchohol that has been deposited into my bloodstream. I have been known to spring at 4 AM from my spot on the floor, accidentally waking those around me in my--you guessed it--euphoric state.

The blog url I have now explained, and the blog title (which took even longer to settle on) is from an E.E. Cummings poem:

"i am a little church(no great cathedral)
far from the splendor and squalor of hurrying cities
-i do not worry if briefer days grow briefest,
i am not sorry when sun and rain make april

my life is the life of the reaper and the sower;
my prayers are prayers of earth's own clumsily striving
(finding and losing and laughing and crying)children
whose any sadness or joy is my grief or my gladness

around me surges a miracle of unceasing
birth and glory and death and resurrection:
over my sleeping self float flaming symbols
of hope,and i wake to a perfect patience of mountains

i am a little church(far from the frantic
world with its rapture and anguish)at peace with nature
-i do not worry if longer nights grow longest;
i am not sorry when silence becomes singing

winter by spring,i lift my diminutive spire to
merciful Him Whose only now is forever:
standing erect in the deathless truth of His presence
(welcoming humbly His light and proudly His darkness)"

As you may have noticed, I have a thing for poetry. Other poems considered for the title and url include "Michelangelo's Seizure," "Monet Refuses the Operation," "God Says Yes To Me" (which furnishes the title for this post), "My Grandmother Washes Her Feet," "This Is Just To Say--," "Still I Rise," "Phenomenal Woman," "anyone lived in a pretty how town," "The Force that Through the Green Fuse Drives the Flower," and "If a poet should ask me how I make a poem," which I like to refer to as "the pterodactyl pie poem." I never have been able to find its real name. By the way, all of the above, excepting "My Grandmother Washes Her Feet," are in the public domain. And you should read them.
I really do have a thing (for poetry. And parenthesis**). I like to write poetry too, and people say it's good, but who's ever written a poem and had their family and friends tell them it was terrible? I mean, really. Anyway I'm lazy and shy, and generally self-satisfied whenever I'm not battling--or buried in--self-loathing a-la Anne Lamott. That was a lot of dashes and hyphens and Ls.

I've taken all afternoon to write this entry (off and on) in Notepad, and now I've forgotten what else I wanted to say. But, read poems! I guess I can settle for that. Or just READ, in general.

*Despite the popularity of (and my love for) the word "nauseous," I have had to essentially drop it from my vocabulary since learning that it actually means "causing nausea." Ignorance is bliss. Misery loves company.

**Sometimes I am embarassed by this, but you know what? I am in good company***. I hear that Tolkien was parenthesis-obsessed, too. (So there.)

***While I'm on the topic of obsessions and good company, I'd like to say that I have gained my love of tangential footnotes from the great Terry Pratchett. Please, if you only do one thing this year, read him.

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