NaPoWriMo: Day 18

Coffee

It was ritual;
Rising long before the sun,
Winter sky still dark;

Color diffusing
(Black to purple to pink)
Until golden light

Flooded the kitchen.
There was magic in the first sip,
Sitting cross-legged

On the kitchen bench,
The newsprint, dark and pungent,
Staining my fingers black.

The smell of coffee
Like a promise to myself;
“Today will be okay.”


Prompt Day Eighteen:  As ode to something mundane; an example given was a cup of coffee, so here we are.

Quarantine Brain (A-to-Z Challenge)

Here’s how my mental state has been:  I forgot that A-to-Z Challenge ran all month except Sundays.  I thought it was all month, except weekends.  So I am technically behind; I posted K today when I should be on M.

Which is not a problem, per se, because I can simply do an entry on the next two Sundays.  But I thought — ugh —  I’ve got to at least acknowledge my flub.

It’s been a long few weeks, everyone.

NaPoWriMo: Day 13

Windows Open

With windows open
The breathless whisper of leaves
Carries through cool air

The porch light beckons
Sallow moths, beating pale wings
To rattle the screen


Day Thirteen Prompt:  Off-prompt.  Thought about waking up at my sister’s house in the middle of the night after a drunken night out.  This was pre-kids for both of us, so the house was generally quiet except for one or two familiar sounds.

A-to-Z Challenge: Engine Driver

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Today was the best day Bear has had in a long time; since the start of quarantine, his mood has been volatile, and he’s become hugely argumentative.  Which is not surprising, nor do I blame him, but dealing with my own internal struggles (quarantine-related and otherwise) coupled with the fact that I am now alone with Bear for the entire day while also trying to work/conduct some classes and tutor him means I, myself, have not always acted or reacted in the most positive way, and the onus for changing this whole dynamic was on me.  I made a very conscientious effort to not lose my temper or raise my voice, and while it was not a perfect day, it did run a lot more smoothly, and we managed to both be very productive.  Bear got all his school work done, a number of enrichment activities, and I got a lot of chores done, as well as my A-to-Z challenge.

Ink and colored pencils.

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The Engine Driver

I’m an engine driver
On a long run, on a long run
Would I work beside her?
She’s a long one, such a long one 

And if you don’t love me, let me go
And if you don’t love me let me go 

I’m a country lineman
On a high line, on a high line
So will be my grandson
There are power lines in our bloodlines 

And if you don’t love me, let me go
And if you don’t love me, let me go 

And I am a writer, writer of fictions
I am the heart that you call home
And I’ve written pages upon pages
Trying to rid you from my bones
My bones
My bones 

I’m a money lender
I have fortunes upon fortunes
Take my hand for tender
I am tortured, ever tortured 

And if you don’t love me, let me go
And if you don’t love me, let me go 

And I am a writer, writer of fictions
I am the heart that you call home
And I’ve written pages upon pages
Trying to rid you from my bones
I am a writer, I am all that you have home
Home

And I’ve written pages upon pages
Trying to rid you from my bones
My bones
My bones 

And if you don’t love me, let me go
(And if you don’t love me, let me go)
And if you don’t love me, let me go

A-to-Z Challenge: A Bower Scene

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Some houskeeping first:

I realized at some point last night — because of course I did, any earlier would have been entirely too convenient in these circumstances — that essentially all of my micron pens are running out of ink.  While I intend to do a quick run through our office supply aisle at the grocery store to see if they carry them, I am not venturing, nor sending anyone else out to the grocery store until it is absolutely necessary (as in, until we actually really need more food), so that may not be until this weekend or later.  There’s also a (decent) chance that they won’t carry them, at which point I may try ordering them online, but with everything going on, who knows how long they’ll take to arrive.  So be prepared for micron sketches peppered throughout pencil sketches, colored pencils, watercolors or acrylics, et. (I’m working them out of order, so even though I’m running low today at “A,” micron might still show up much later in the alphabet).

Now, onto the challenge.  I don’t care for this drawing at all; in all honesty, left to my own devices, I wouldn’t even share it.  I wanted a sort of whimsical, storybook sort of illustration, but the loss of my finest tipped microns means this was done with much thicker lines than I would have liked (her face and body I would normally have done in 005, and instead I had to use a 03 and a 05).  The loss of the fine-lining ability of the microns means, given how this drawning turned out, that I’m going to have to rethink some of my ideas for my illustrations.  I got disheartened with this one as soon as I entered the inking stage, and it shows for how I rushed it (basically, as soon as the face turned out like that, I was like, “Welp. No hope for it now,” ha ha).  Not my best start to the challenge.

Still, onward and upward.  So many more chances.

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Thou unconsolable daughter
Said the sister

When wilt thou trouble the water
In the cistern

And what irascible blackguard
Is the father

And when young Margaret’s waistline
Grew wider

The fruit of her amorous entwine
Inside her

And so our heroine withdraws
To the taiga

A Break (31 Day Blogging Challenge: Days 20 & 21)

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20.  Difficult Time in Life

Ha, I kind of think I’m going through one right now.  My anxiety has never been higher, and for the first time in my life, I can’t really talk myself donw from thinking that my anxiety is misplaced or exagerated.  The silver lining on this is, this is it – this is the hardest time of my life.  I feel like that probably means I’ve been incredibly fortunate.

21.  Favorite Books

Ugh, I was away from reading for so, so long.  I don’t even know what my favorite books are anymore.  One book I normally name, which I did legitimately enjoy, is Audrey Niffenegger’s The Time Traveller’s Wife.  Beyond that, though, I think realistically I more have favorite authors.  Augusten Burroughs, David Sedaris, Terry Pratchett have been pretty perenial favorites, but right now I’m trying to read more frequently and more broadly to discover new favorites.


Saturday means a break from homeschooling.  I’m not going to lie, that almost makes me sad.  Doing the homeschool routine gives my day a bit of structure and gives me time with Bear, but by the same token, I recognize that he needs a break, as well.  We go pretty hard for him being only five; we do about 2 or 3 hours of pretty rigorous academics that includes two Scholastic lessons (including assessments), YouTube videos and do-alongs, Kahoot reviews, and Khan Academy.  He needs time to decompress and so do I.

It feels weird to just have time-upon-time.  Up on today’s roster is a ton of reading, working on some art (I started two sketches yesterday just to get the juices flowing again, as it were), and trying to prep for April’s challenges (I am having a harder time than expected finding songs for certain letters; that being said, I’m okay with branching out to Decemberist-adjacent acts, but I need to take the time to sit down and figure that out).

In the midst of everything, I am finding myself excited to have time to work on projects, but I’m also going to be honest ad admit that I’m still looking for new things I can do to pass the time, and I’m wondering if other people are feeling the same way.  I have plenty of things to keep me occupied for the next couple of weeks, but let’s be honest — I’m pretty sure the lockdown s going to last longer than that.  Anyway, I’m wondering if there exists or if there is a need for a “hobby exchange;” a place where people can say things like, “hey, this is what I’m already into, here’s the stuff I have access to (internet, fancy paper, yarns, etc), what other things are there that I can do with what I have?”  Or even more specifically, “hey, I’m in search of new point-and-click online games/Steam recs/Netflix shows/family activities/social or creative forums, etc., here’s what I already like/have/do, what can you recomend me?”

Does such a place or post exist, or is it a niche that needs to be filled??

Also, I updated my Art Gallery with the Birds of Black acrylics, for those interested.

It’s Saturday.  Take a breath, take a walk, take a stretch.  Settle in.  There are no expectations on you at the moment except to try to stay safe.  In the midst of a lockdown, there is some strange freedom in that.