Of siblings and time

Please note: this is not a carefully crafted piece of writing.  Today, I have come here simply to think out loud.  You are free to join me if you wish…

I have been reflecting on the nature of shared experiences recently, about how there are people in our lives with whom time can ‘concertina’.  I guess you know the kind of people I mean.  You will have shared a significant portion of your life with them, both in terms of time and location, and also your hardships and celebrations.  These are the people that you can sit down with, after many years have elapsed, and speak as if you last met only yesterday.  I love having those people in my life, there is something very special about that kind of friendship.

I took this thought a bit further today.  I found myself musing on the fact that the people who know us the best are often those with whom we have shared the most.  I used to have a sister. I say ‘used to’, because sadly she died over two years ago.  She and I had shared experiences which spanned our respective lives.  Experiences from childhood and memories which would only make sense to ourselves, and perhaps also to our parents.  I am the youngest repository of those memories now, the other two being my Mum and Dad – who I am fortunate to still have in my life.  This won’t always be the case, though.  Eventually, my parents will go the same way as my sis, and I will be left.

This thought makes me feel a little bit adrift in this world.  It is not only the fact that these shared memories will ultimately be shared with no-one else, but also the realisation that these people – who have known me the longest and to some extent know me the best – will be gone.

Which brings me full circle, to those friends with whom time concertinas.  As I said, I am grateful for these friends.  I am also very glad of those with whom time has no need to concertina, because we have managed to keep in touch during the intervening years. My longest-standing friends are probably those I first met at Uni, when I was all of 19 years old (a mere *ahem* years ago).  These people will eventually become those who have known me for the greater part of my life, and the only ones who have really known me since I was that young.

I’m not sure what this means.  I know it means I am very blessed to have such friends. Perhaps it makes them sort of ‘time-siblings’, though I’m sure there is a better way of saying that.  I guess, if you read this and realise you are one of my concertina friends or ‘time-siblings’, I would like you to know that I am glad to have you in my life; you are precious to me and you are loved.

A Launch from 10.

I was privileged to be able to attend the launch of a book called Ten Swansea Writers earlier this month. Two of these writers are good friends of mine and, in the wake of such a great evening, I hope I may be able to count a few more of these talented folk amongst them now too. (Please?)

One windy Swansea Wednesday, I joined a horde of happy people who were gathering in Tino’s on Wind Street (appropriately). I was met with a voucher for a free drink (always a good start) and proceeded to mingle. After a time, we settled down to hear the work of the aforementioned ten writers, many of whom turned out to be very fine orators too. The range of writing was as broad as it was deep, spanning the wonderfully absurd to the deeply personal and moving. An eclectic mix of talent.

These writers could justifiably have filled the whole evening with their own readings, but were generous in giving the middle slot over to Open Mic. Here the variety of talent continued. At one point, however, a strange woman leapt up to read her poem about wearing a hat. She was caught on camera below. (If you see her, do not approach; she is not armed, but is known to unpredictable, erratic and possibly dangerous.)

Other pictures from the evening can be found here.

https://m.facebook.com/WelshWritingDesk/photos/?tab=albums

Do go and take a look, and perhaps find out how to purchase a book. I can thoroughly recommend it.

Flowers and Fruit

Allegorical title, that.

So, aeons ago, it would appear, I blogged about forthcoming plans.  As it stands, only one of these is in the process of coming to fruition, another is still gradually growing and yet another has unfortunately had to be pruned away.

In reverse order, the FaB Intervention has fallen under the secateurs of necessity.  The day when this event is due to take place coincides with my need to be doing something else entirely.  This something appears in the form of project management for the community garden of Sustaining Life, another of my ventures.  (Take a look at http://www.facebook.com/sust.life if you want to know more.)  Mel Ezra, co-host of FaB, tells me that it is likely to be an annual event, so Blue Morpho could still be spreading her wings again in future.

The fruit which is gradually growing is my intention to put pen to paper and write a book.  It’s happening.  Sporadically.   That’s better than not at all, right?

The plan which is coming to fruition actually features flowers.  Thus:

resilience

This was produced for the forthcoming Art of Caring Exhibtion, a response to the theme of Resilience.  (More details here: http://www.caringandcare.blogspot.co.uk )

So, yes.  Flowers and fruit.  Hope you have enjoyed them.  As always, please let me know what you think.  If you leave me a comment, I can also drop by your virtual residence too..

Dith x

Forthcoming Attractions

Man, this blog needs a dust! It has been neglected for so long. Time to put that straight, or at least make it less wonky.

Well, the Art of Caring Exhibition (which I blogged about here ) and A FaB Intervention (blog here ) are both approaching again. I need to get my act together and work out what to do for each of these fabulous events, curated by equally fabulous folk. (Waves at the curators, you know who you are!😉 )

The Art of Caring is on the theme of Resilience this year, and a few ideas are sloshing about in my head at the moment. The strongest at present is the image of plants pushing their way through cracks in paving, but I think the character of people who keep getting up, day after day, despite chronic illness is also worth exploring. One, the other, both? I guess something needs to be put down on paper in order to answer that question.

By contrast, I’m reasonably sure that Blue Morpho is going to make a repeat visit to Bath this year. I have not yet decided what my alter ego is going to do exactly, but encouragement and leaflets are likely to be involved. Not vastly different to last time, but I’d like to add a twist to my complimentary compliment slips. Perhaps with some element of paying things forward being included.

I’m also putting pen to paper these days in an attempt at longer form prose writing. Oh, okay. I may as well say it. I’ve finally started writing my first book. 40-something years is more than long enough to just think about doing it, the thing isn’t going to write itself!  My discipline is appalling though, I have no schedule or routine. I suppose I should instigate one really, as carrying a notebook in which I write when the mood takes me is only going to get so far.

So, there you have it. Some forthcoming attractions from the fertile soil of my mind. I just need to tend these seedlings and produce something now. Did I say just? Hah! Having the idea is the easy bit! Wish me luck…

 

A Poem about Poetry (for National Poetry Day)

It must be lovely
to be free
verse.
Free to do
as you please.

Free from the tyranny
of rhyme
and reason.

Free to stay out partying until the wee small hours
and not emerge from your bedroom
‘til after lunch.
Two
days
later.

Actually, no.
That’s nonsense
verse.
(How could a poem even do that?)

There may be
no rhyme,
but there must be
some reason.

There may be
freedom
from pedantic iambic pentameter
– and the need to rhyme all of the time –

but

boundaries
must
be
respected.

Even
in freedom.

Especially
in freedom.