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Help. I Can't Stop Writing Sonnets. 

Here's a work in progress. It hasn't got a title yet. 

I tried ignoring them, the moonlit calls  
The clawing, howling pack outside the gates,  
Who laugh at silver bullets and at walls  
And, waiting, set up camp, like restless fates.  

They’re nowhere near, and yet I feel them breathe.  
If I dared move, would they pick up my scent?  
They’re pretty unimpressed by my bared teeth  
And merely sneer at letters of intent.  
   
There’s nothing else to do but to surrender  
And wait for claws and teeth to tear my flesh  
And feel the deathly wave of painful splendour  
Like some rabbit caught in a barbed wire mesh.  

There could be worse ways, I guess, to be ruined,  
Than with the feel of soft wolf fur against my wound.

Great Artists and their Working Routines 

I’m just reading a book called “Daily Rituals”, about the working routines of more than a hundred and sixty of the greatest minds… and it had the strange effect on me of making me panic about how little I feel I achieve each day - even though routines varied so much for each of them, and some didn’t even have one at all. But for some reason, unless I adopt the most grueling, discipline requiring routine, I always feel I’m not doing it right. 

Anyway, here’s a tiny selection of ‘tried and tested’ ways of handling it: 

Stravinsky could only work once he made sure no one could hear him. After an hour of physical exercise he would work from 9 till one. When he felt blocked while composing, he cleared his head with a headstand. 

Voltaire liked working in bed. He even dictated his new works to his secretaries while lying in bed. He rose at noon, recieved visitors, and skipped lunch in favour of coffee and chocolate. In total he worked about eighteen to 20 hours a day. 

W.H. Auden was of the opinion that to “discipline passion” you had to “discipline time”, and therefore had a really rigid schedule starting at 6.30 am sharp - until cocktail hours at 6.30 pm. He tried to maintain this pace with alcohol, coffee, tobbacco and ampthetamines.   

Sylvia Plath never had much of a routine, except for at the end of her life, when she got up at 5.am and wrote till her children woke up. 

Ann Beattie’s favourite working hours are from 12 am to 3 am. 

Although I still feel the panic of not achieving all I want to accomplish, at least my own routines seem less crazy to me now.

I Won't Have This Arrow Taken Out.  

(Frida Kahlo, The Wounded Deer)

Last night, when I sat down to write a blog post, all that came out was a new song.

This Arrow

I won’t have this arrow taken out until I understand this.
I won’t have this arrow taken out until I know,
Until I’ve learnt the name of the man who wounded me, 
And all the details of his family tree. 

I won’t have this arrow taken out until I understand this.
I won’t have this arrow taken out until I know ,
Until I know the trade of the man who wounded me, 
Whether he’s selling arms or herbal tea? 

I won’t have this arrow taken out until I understand this.
I won’t have this arrow taken out until I know,
Until I know if his hair is black or fair ,
If his clothes are fancy or threadbare. 

I won’t have this arrow taken out until I understand this.
I won’t have this arrow taken out until I know 
If his bow was made of cherry or of ash,
Bought with credit or with cash. 

I won’t have this arrow taken out until I understand this.
I won’t have this arrow taken out until I know
Whether his bowstring was of silk or of nettle,
Used to kill or to unsettle. 

I won’t have this arrow taken out until I understand this.
I won’t have this arrow taken out until I know 
Whether the shaft was made of bamboo or of plastic, 
Was ungiving or elastic;
Whether it was feathered from the wings of a vulture or a peacock 
Whether the bird was bred in Florida or in Bangkok.

I won’t have this arrow taken out until I understand this.
I won’t have this arrow taken out until I know for sure,
Until I’ve learnt if the man who wounded me was in actuality good. 
Maybe, just maybe I just misunderstood.

Do We Need Border Controls in Our Personal Life? 

Image: Security Girl by Banksy

I love people.
I love seeing other people’s worlds, I love diving in to explore them, and I love coming back to my own space where I can put what I’ve seen and felt with all my other treasures that I’ve collected throughout the years. 
I feel gratitude for everyone who shared bits of their world with me, and the memories will stay with me forever. 

I love my own world, interconnected, and yet my very own dominion - the only place from which I can be happy and function. 

It’s a strange thing, the need to protect the borders of this world so fiercely, while still allowing traffic in and out… realizing the need to set up border controls and sentries, to let nothing sinister in, and to try not to let harmful things come out… 

I feel strange writting this, considering how irritated I feel  just walking through the security check at the airport... and even stranger that it's taken me so long to realize this. But only by knowing my boundaries will remain intact, can I feel safe in my interactions. Only by knowing where my weapons are at all times can I actually be vulnerable with others.

Sometimes I wonder, does it only take women that long to figure that out?

What's your thoughts on this?

 

 

Joy 

One of the songs from my show I’ve enjoy playing the most, is not one of my own.  

Strangely, it’s Ode to Joy.  

I know, a strange choice of cover song.  

Made popular by Beethoven’s setting, and by its adoption as European Anthem, the poem was not so highly regarded by its author. Schiller felt it was a failure. In later life he considered it as “of no value to the world.“  

A good reminder not to judge our creations.  

Because, regardless of how Schiller felt, it’s been of value to me. Joy is underrated. Joy is crucial to happiness. Joy is the antidote to whatever threatens to crush our spirits. Joy deserves a song.    

And had Schiller not, in a youthful fit of idealism,written it, I might have been left with the impossibly difficult task to write my own.