Dancer

Striking the ground:
A swipe of the foot.
Leg straight.

Stretch of the apposing arm:
Reaching out for
A faithful illusion,
A sentiment.

With a breath
Ripe berries–
Raspberries, strawberries,
Peaches, and cream.
Soft and young nature.

Through a curtain
A morning glimmer.

There’s a tension
In her eyes and brow.
Compression.

A lone violin laments,
In hopeful long pulls and pushes.

She takes deep inhales
For long exhales
to push them out.

Through movement,
She wades through
Past and future
For the present.

Adrenaline and exertion
Sweat out impurities
Leaving her
With a soft smile.

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Sweck Experience

I realize I never posted my second version of Sweck.
Warning: It contains sensitive content, and inappropriate language.

(The formatting was glitching for me, so please forgive any little blips)

A little backstory before you start to read. I wrote a poem, which I have as an earlier post. My classmates and teacher at the time found it odd, and couldn’t sink their teeth into it. So, I proceeded to do two very different versions as the term continued. The second version was critiqued as too many forms of writing in one piece, while the first was critiqued for being just generally too odd and abrasive.

At the time I got critiqued, I took it very poorly, not to anyone’s face, but in my own space. It meant a lot to me. (Though it was also a panicked compilation of old pieces, because I had hit so many creative walls). It addressed multiple issues, in my mind. For the second version, I was equally frustrating, with an idea that I was being so creative with the medium, using a format of a play, a poem, and a short story in one. For the final version, I still loved it, but it didn’t feel as raw as the other two to me.

These were written quite a few years ago now, so they aren’t perfect by any means, but they are still dear to my heart. It addressed a few issues some people close to me were having, and my own. I will say, they are pretty angst ridden, but what isn’t at least a little that I write?

If you’d like to read the versions in order:

  1. SWECK
  2. Sweck Experience (this post)
  3. Without a Shadow of a Sweck
Continue reading “Sweck Experience”

Paranoia

Jagged edges dance in silhouette:
A phantom beneath his feet.
Binding to ankles with pointed nails.

Standing still, a burning chest,
Gives leverage to climb.
Long needles puncturing muscle.

Clinging to the spine,
Up into the brain,
it burrows:
Slimy and warm.

He thinks it is him
As it speaks.

Placing traps, barricades,
and whispers,
It paints allies in black.

Colour drips into sewage drains,
Swift steps to the next routine.
Looking both ways,
Shadows lengthen
In day and night.
Black and white.

Smells drift away,
Replaced by stale air.

Shadows begin to mutter,
Just too quiet to understand.
Low rumbling laughter.

Walking faster.
Faster
A dog barks: Incessant.
Faster
Cries down the alley.
Faster
A man yells.
Faster
A glint of metal.
Faster
Smell of iron.
Faster
Dripping.
Faster

He screams.
All goes black.

A gentle laugh, like marigold.
Blind, he follows.
Arms reaching through
thick air, particles of water
Clinging to arm hairs.

A flash of green,
Grass pushes out.

Quickening pace,
a path bordered in daisies.
A gentle hint of sap
pushes out the stale air.

Warmth on his back,
A golden light seeps in.

Storefronts and houses
All shimmer into view.

A field in reach
Verdant with bushes,
spring grass, wildflowers,
And the marigold laughter.

Advancing,
People are in sight,
Friends and family.
Earnest smiles,
Almost laughter.
A surprise party.

A pinch in his shoulder,
A haunting tune:
It darkens the edges of vision.

He claws at his spine:
Ripping out wads of black.
Dripping.

Feet pushing against ground,
Running to meet them.

Waiting for him,
They place soft palms
on his trembling shoulders.

They never left.

It was never him.

Reading

Hairs standing, goosebumps: a chill–
Arms resting on a plush duvet.
With a smell of parchment,
A page flips.

A cocoon of feathered, and fuzzy warmth–
All muscles ease into the mattress,
Except those brave arms,
Diligently turning pages.

Glowing, a lamp directs its spotlight–
To illuminate each word,
To be followed down
The rabbit hole.

Looking Back to Look Forward (85-90)

Seemed like a good time to do another one of these. I worry if I leave them too long, my memory will be a little too fuzzy. If you haven’t seen one of these from me before: when I started this blog, I did daily creative writing posts for over two years. After that it was a bit more on and off. But, it means I have a decent amount of old pieces that I like to revisit, discuss, and maybe inspire myself with. I hope you can get something out of them, and maybe get the chance to see an old piece that would be a lot of work to find.

85. Dreaming

This piece was a filler, meaning, I wrote it way before, and used it because I was way too tired to write something new as I usually did. It shows its age, in my opinion. At the time I actually wrote it, I was living alone for the first time, in a house to myself with many pets that were abandoned into my care. There was a sense of new found independence, but also fear, anxiety, and depression. I would use writing, creating, and dreaming as escapes from how stressed I was about even figuring out what I wanted to do. It was a sense of being seasick, which this poem shows. Trying to make sense of myself as a fully independent human as both my parents had kind of vanished… no prolonged goodbyes because I was the last one left, and divorce still created a weird tension. Even as I was awake, I felt half asleep and like I was stuck in waves.

86. Soft Minds

With the stress of my job at the time, I was needing a tactic to get my mind started for writing. For this one I googled images, and found the header image you see with this piece. The calm of his face, I was trying my best to emulate it, and use it to trigger my own calm. Having grown-up with many acres of nature, when I’ve hit a limit of sorts, I tend to use it to soothe me. In the front field of our farm where I grew up, about 12-14 dear would hang out. They were always so full of calm. I remember, as I wrote this, I got to this point of a serene smile and my high shoulders finally falling as I made myself take softer breaths.

87. Bedtime Blues

The wonders of overwhelm and fatigue. On a brink of a migraine, I was really noticing how bright the bathroom light was. It was one of those nights that huddling up in blankets was pure bliss, resulting in me falling asleep right away. I wanted to create an off putting tone to this piece. Pretty sure I had been watching some movie or show with the listed colours. Maybe a Tron?

88. The Rainbow Man

Through the years, I’ve had spurts of this strong desire to try and do unmarked kindness, where no one knows it was me, but I can see it helped their day just a little. Maybe it’s because I feel so uncomfortable with thank you’s, or even just being noticed. There is a sense of wonder being anonymous, and getting to see reaction without having to truly receive them. Too much direct kindness from others, and I feel really uncomfortable, and like I owe them way too much, more than I can ever repay. This piece is an homage to that sentiment.

89. The Intellect

The amount I needed to learn for work at the time… I had no previous coding experience, and had to learn to build websites. It began to feel endless, and as if I knew nothing. Though, they still hired me. 

Simultaneously, this poem expresses anger towards how much sometimes intelligence is used to measure a person while praising intelligence. The general concept was mainly the idea of constantly gathering information and trying to stuff as much in one’s head as possible, but it never seems like enough because you need wisdom as well.

90. Cellophane Girl

Growing up, my family would criticize makeup, too much self-care, and focusing on visual presentation of one’s self. Though they wouldn’t stop you from doing it, there would be so many snide comments to those who did, implying they were whores, money obsessed, and dependent. It’s taken me a while to feel okay even having a skin routine, using lotion that smells nice when my hands are dry, and to sometimes wear some makeup.

This poem was about animosity towards the idea of women who specifically prime themselves to manipulate with their looks, body language, and diction. Though, it is almost praising for how in the end it really is a lot of work and dedication, and is hard not to notice.

91. Fishing For Dreams

Though I have a tendency for cynicism, at my core I’m a hopeful dreamer. I also have a love for surrealism, childish wonder, and simplicity. Imagining memories of being a child, I really did love being one. At times, I’ve been told I’m still childish, not in an immature way, but in the bubbly, sparkling eye way. Due to some traumas, sometimes I lose that, but it’s still there. I really am a child at heart. (Catch me dancing in my office chair, holding back giggles while no one watches).

Conclusion

Maybe not all of these pieces were gems, but feel free to give them a quick read. Of these, Fishing for Dreams and Soft Minds are the ones I still look at fairly fondly. Between all these pieces, it’s clear I was working hard to bring back my optimism between bouts of doubt and lack of confidence. I hope you got something out of this post, it was cathartic for me.

Early Nights

Shoulders pull down,
Body bobbing.

With long breaths,
Eyelids stick,
Peeled apart
With each blink.

Pondering releasing tears,
But don’t know why.

Dragging weight.
Dark thoughts of nothing,
Just fatigue draping over.

Overcast with a chill.
Smiling for energy,
Or as rose-coloured-glasses
To give hope
And not depression
For the season.

Note taking aspirations,
To pull out of the early nights.

Another Cup, Please

Ends of leaves wince into fragile, brown, shriveled gremlins, others just hang limply. Clinging to soil, small flies congregate. You stare at them blankly as you hold the thermostat button for a few degrees. Part of you still has a chill. A shiver rushing up, ramming its way up the spine. With a slight twist and pull, a crack or three sound.

Parked at the desk, you hunch into the keyboard and screen. Time passes, and your fingers lock, twisting on the light. Gotta get this done before getting up for the main switch. It’s only 4, but the sun’s giving up for the day.

Dragging toes on the office chair’s base to get them back in socks. Today, the music needs a few extra clicks up. Typing away, you tap your foot, impatiently waiting for coffee to be done. It’s almost in time, sometimes.

The air’s stale, not quite BO, but slightly sour. While using the mouse, you grab a few crackers with your spare hand, angling your head back just a tad, in case it helps with crumbs. It doesn’t.

Words of your mother in your head, you over straighten your back, just to ease back into a banana shape. You pretend you’re an expert with overly confident music. Your heart races like when you’re alone and can’t open that jar but have to. Pickles are important.

You shout, ‘yes I am’ to the music, “You’re the best around! Nothing’s gonna ever keep you down,” as you Google how to finish your job.

Phone chiming next to you, your heart does a little dance. More work? Hurriedly almost dropping your phone, you take a peak. An email. Dragging down the notification, it says “You’re phone bill is ready!” Putting your phone face down, you take a deep breath, filling your chest to look like Heman, and continue to sing “You’re the best!”

With gusto, you see ivories beneath your fingers as you type. Your black suit jacket with tails goes with your black underwear.

Peering into the base of your cup, there are only coffee rings. Still bringing it to your lips, there is definitely one last drop.