Sunday, October 4, 2015
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.
Wendell Berry, "The Peace of Wild Things" from The Selected Poems of Wendell Berry. Copyright © 1998.
Friday, October 2, 2015
People judge you by your writing, so getting a word wrong can make you look bad. Be sure to avoid these common writing errors in your next email:
Affect/Effect: Affect is a verb; effect is a noun. It affected him. The effect was startling.
All Right/Alright: Although alright is gaining ground, the correct choice is still all right.
A Lot: A lot is two words, not one. Allot means “to parcel out.”
Between You and I: Nope. Between you and me is the correct phrase.
Complement/Compliment: Things that work well together complement each other. Compliments are a form of praise.
Farther/Further: Farther is for physical distance; further is for metaphorical distance. How much farther? Our plan can’t go any further.
Lay/Lie: Subjects lie down; objects are laiddown. He should lie down. Lay the reports there.
Thursday, September 3, 2015
Tuesday, August 25, 2015
By Rebecca Faust
letter to my transgender daughter
I made soup tonight, with cabbage, chard
and thyme picked outside our back door.
For this moment the room is warm and light,
and I can presume you safe somewhere.
I know the night lives inside you. I know grave,
sad errors were made, dividing you, and hiding
you from you inside. I know a girl like you
was knifed last week, another set aflame.
I know I lack the words, or all the words I say
are wrong. I know I’ll call and you won’t answer,
and still I’ll call. I want to tell you
you were loved with all I had, recklessly,
and with abandon, loved the way the cabbage
in my garden near-inverts itself, splayed
to catch each last ray of sun. And how
the feeling furling-in only makes the heart
more dense and green. Tonight it seems like
something one could bear.
Guess what, Dad and I finally figured out Pandora,
and after all those years of silence, our old music
fills the air. It fills the air, and somehow, here,
at this instant and for this instant only
—perhaps three bars—what I recall
equals all I feel, and I remember all the words.
Copyright © 2015 by Rebecca Foust. Used with permission of the author.
Friday, August 21, 2015
I'm sorry if I caused confusion.
Yes, everything is OK. The regret was about missing the flexibility the old job gave me to be where I was, when I wanted, which is impossible now with days just filled with meetings.
I missed being able to play with the kittens, sleep in with D. But I don't miss the anxiety and bullying and intimidation at the University. As dysfunctional as the public service may seem at times, it matters that you're not alone in it, and it isn't personal...
I know I made the right move. It's a forward in life, not work.
No regrets, just this temporary tinge, and then it passed...
Wednesday, August 19, 2015
"A tinge is to be expected. There are few decisions that come completely cleanly - most have pros & cons. Important thing is to learn from past & look ahead ."
Shared with me by J Aloisi this unsettling morning.
Monday, April 20, 2015
I found this beautiful so am sharing 😊
My child isn't my easel to paint,
Nor my diamond to polish!
My child isn't my trophy to flaunt,
Nor my dummy to taunt!
My child isn't my badge or my honour,
Nor my respect that he/she must protect!
My child isn't an idea or a fantasy,
Nor my reflection or legacy!
My child isn't my puppet or my project,
Nor my pawn or my cadet!
My child is here to fumble & stumble
To get in & out of trouble!
My child is here to try,
To fall & to cry!
My child is here to unravel the mysteries,
To educate oneself & rewrite histories!
My child is here to make his/her own choices,
To exercise his/her freewill & experience the consequences!
As a Parent,
My task is to make my child able & capable,
To keep aside my ego & be by his/her side!
My task is to guide & educate,
To let be & not frustrate!
My task is allow him/her to ponder,
And see my child grow into a Wonder!
Friday, July 25, 2014
there is that question of how to love,
how to bundle yourself against the frosted morning—
the crunch of icy grass underfoot, the scrape
of cold wipers along the windshield—
and convert time into distance.
What song to sing down an empty road
as you begin your morning commute?
And is there enough in you to see, really see,
the three wild turkeys crossing the street
with their featherless heads and stilt-like legs
in search of a morning meal? Nothing to do
but hunker down, wait for them to safely cross.
As they amble away, you wonder if they want
to be startled back into this world. Maybe you do, too,
waiting for all this to give way to love itself,
to look into the eyes of another and feel something—
the pleasure of a new lover in the unbroken night,
your wings folded around him, on the other side
of this ragged January, as if a long sleep has ended.
The long sleep has ended. I have stepped back into, no, I have been startled back into this world... I can see you, fingers red with strawberry juice.
Sunday, July 13, 2014
Tuesday, June 10, 2014
"I saw a movie with my parents earlier today called Enough Said. It was a pretty good film. A few lines in it stayed with me though. It was one of those moments that something holds you, because you're open to it, and perhaps you need to hear it.
The female protagonist in the movie is symptomatic of our generation. She's single, divorced, a wonderful person, searching for a partner, smarting still about her past, trying to live her life fully... but in her effort to protect herself, and a few bad miscalculations, she fatally undermines a very promising relationship. (I'm not a movie buff by any measure, but I wanted to give you a bit of context.)
After the she's messed up their relationship, her now-former love asks her
"why?" [she acted out the way she did]
"I wanted to protect myself", she replies
"and what about protecting us?" he asks back
and therein lies the heart of the human condition
what about protecting us?
We go to great lengths to protect ourselves, and with each hurt, we tend to find more ways to protect ourselves-- financially, physically, recreationally... but the one that is possibly the most important-- emotionally. We hesitate to give up that fear, lest we get hurt again. We are our worst enemies.
In my last relationship, I think I tried, in all that we went through and experienced, to "protect us". What I didn't realise was that I was the only one doing that. When we ended it, the hurt wasn't about regretting that I didn't protect myself, but about being disappointed at the end that I hadn't been protected, and more importantly, had purposely ignored that reality. We might have loved one another, but we were not right for each other. More importantly, he was not the right person for me.
I look back, and there are many points at which I should have known. I can't do it all over again, and I can't absolve myself of responsibility either, but I know what I need to feel the next time around-- "protected", by my partner, too.
One can never measure these things, or value them, or weigh whether it is enough, but one can know the presence of it, and learn to recognise the absence of it too.
To sleep at night, knowing that you're looking out for the people you love, and as you drift to sleep that you're looked out for too, especially by the person who lies beside you, and breathes gently into the space, and into the memories, and into the life that you share."