A cottage in the woods

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“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.” ~ Henry David Thoreau

I am going to make the gross assumption that everyone has thought, at least once, about what they would do if they won a big sum of cash.  I just had a dream the other night that I was handed a cheque for $500,000.00.  When I woke up, my brain rapidly began to compile a list of my desires and the list was (not surprisingly) simple.

Haliburton

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I want this house on a big piece of land that affords me privacy, sunsets and a vast array of nature.  I want the peepers to chirp me to sleep at night and I want the caress of the morning sun to touch my cheek while I rouse.  I want to sit on that top deck and enjoy my morning coffee while I watch the dogs chasing squirrels.  I want to glance to my right and see the roof of my garage which also houses the space I can use to dabble in wood-work.

This house has always been the house I want to build.  It is small, charming and has a big kitchen so I can cook and bake to my heart’s content.   A picture of this house is pinned to a board on my refrigerator.  Each time I look at it, I send that wish into the universe hoping that some day my wish will be turned into a reality.

Many times I have closed my eyes and pictured myself sitting in my eclectic, but not expensive, living room.  The candles on the dining room table are lit, soft music plays in the background and the smell of roasting lamb permeates every room in the house.  The wine is a perfect temperature and every now and then I urgently run upstairs to my writing room to document my latest burst of creativity.

My happiness is not waiting for me in distant geographical locations.  My happiness does not consist of collections of things.  My happiness lies within those four walls and the grass and trees that will surround it.  I want to love everything about my life, I want to live deliberately and I want to do it in this house.

What would be your wish if you were able to afford anything you wanted?

 

Maybe I should have paid more attention in my high school Physics class

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It never ceases to amaze me.  The amount of hours one works in the real world is directly proportionate to the eradication of the creative mind in the artistic world, especially following a long weekend of working in the hospitality business.

I remember my Physics teacher in Grade 11 throwing around words like ‘inertia’ and ‘for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction’ but I don’t remember studying the direct correlation of physical exhaustion and prolific brain death.  Sure, the basic functions in my body still happen – I breathe in and out, I walk and talk, but the rest of me seems to be on autopilot – like that object in motion that tends to stay in motion.

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I want to be that object at rest.   I want to remain at rest (for at least 24 hours).  I want to have my brain back – the brain that wakes me up at night, swirling words around in circles until I can grab them all from those cartoon word clouds above my head.  I want the ability to form those words into whimsical, thoughtful or romantic lines and be able to feel that creative flow coursing through my veins.

I wonder what Newton’s theory would be on my chances of winning the lottery and being able to spend my precious moments writing a best-seller?  Time + creativity = true bliss.  Until that moment, I shall struggle through the hours required at my job and hope my brain can keep up the frantic pace.

Rekindling your first love

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There are not enough hours in a day to do all of the things I love to do.  I have always had a talent for artistic things and have dabbled in many different genres of craft since my early days.  I have painted, sketched, enjoyed calligraphy, I have carved wooden signs, done needlepoint, sewn clothing, holiday gifts and teddy bears, decorated birthday and wedding cakes.  I have even reinvented some pieces of furniture.

This world of creativity is my happy place.  It allows me to play by my rules and recreate the world I see in my head.  Sometimes that world is edible and sometimes it merely hangs on a wall but that portal of imagination opens and allows me the freedom to choose how I portray my vision and the medium transforms as time goes on.  But the one outlet I seem to consistently rekindle a relationship with is writing.

I may cycle through my repertoire of inventiveness and hastily spend my time with one art form or another but I always come back to the written word.  It has been my staple.  It has been my constant.  And it has been my comfort zone because it was my first real love.

hugged by words

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I know words will always be there for me.  I learned at a very early age that I could freely express myself through my writing.  I could vent frustrations, express buried emotion and free the feelings that yearned to be expelled from my head and my heart through composition or poetry.  Words permeated my brain.  Words soothed me.  Words helped me escape.  Words encouraged me to love more deeply than I ever imagined I could.  And even if those words did not come from my brain, words still connected me to a world beyond the world I live in every day.

There will always be moments I cheat on my true love with other avenues of creativity but I will always come back to the truest art that knows me better than any brush stroke or any jagged seam.   Words reassure me and always have the ability to welcome me back into their world.   Words will always be the embrace in which I find the most comfort.  Words will always be my first love.

 

The prodigious exultation of being a word-nerd

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Blogging has allowed me to become a true, and very contented, word snob.  I have always loved words.  As a teenager, I kept a duo-tang (who remembers those?) filled with lined paper and would make note of all the unfamiliar words I came across while devouring all the books I used to read.  Those words that eluded my pubescent mind became a staple of my vocabulary once I had defined them and cemented them into the library of my brain.  They circled my imagination and urged my cerebrum to come out to play.  They tickled my tongue and they began to flow like blood in my veins.

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(look at how lovely my penmanship was in high school)

I assiduously began to incorporate those words into as many scenarios as I could.  My teachers were duly impressed.  My fellow students merely looked at me like I had three heads.  My flamboyant wordiness was an ephemeral fantasy and I had to tone down my elevated rhetoric to become a conventional high-school student filled with angst rather than synonyms.

Today I still continue to incorporate those words into my daily conversations, not to sound more intelligent but, because I enjoy the way those words sound when I say them aloud.  I relish being able to use the phrase ‘alarmingly verbose’ instead of just saying “he talked a lot”.  I enjoy describing winter as arduous and not just “shitty”, although shitty can truly encapsulate the past six months.  And I will forever want to be mystified by language and not speak simply to communicate.  I want to thrive in my love for words.

My enthusiasm for articulate phrases has never waned.  It has followed me throughout my journey.  It has haunted my sleep and clandestinely pursued me during my conscious hours.

May those words forever churn in the maelstrom of my imagination and may I always be able to maintain my romance with the language of expression.

 

Taking a breather to chase some tail

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Now before your mind wanders into dangerous territory, I meant the Easter Bunny’s tail.  I am taking a brief hiatus from blogging this weekend to enjoy some much-needed R&R – Red wine and Rabbit (of the chocolate persuasion).

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Hopefully a few days of not pressuring myself to write every day will ease the feeling of having a deadline and coax back the enjoyment of the creative process that I seem to be missing.  This weekend signifies rebirth and I am taking the meaning of the holiday to heart.

I wish all of you a very Happy Easter weekend.  May your days be filled with the love of family and friends, and maybe a little bit of tail for good measure.  The chocolate….I meant the chocolate!

Ashes to ashes – fiction

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heart-ants

She knew his heart would crash, landing right at her feet the moment she told him it was over.  What had been a fairy tale beginning had quickly turned into the twisted relationship only Dean Koontz could do justice in one of his macabre stories.  It had been tumultuous, to say the least, and she just needed to be free of him.

Over the course of their relationship, he had retreated into a cocoon inside his mind, fueled by the haze of booze and cigarettes.  She had not realized his heart had shrunk to such a miniscule version of what it once was until she saw it laying before her, cold and lifeless on the stony ground.

His face seemed to become more emaciated the longer she looked at him.  He had not reacted verbally to her accusations.  He could only nod in sullen agreement because he seemed to have lost the ability to speak.  She berated him, lashed out for each minute she spent wishing her life with him had been different.  With each bitter word she uttered, her Machiavellian intention became clearer to him.

She couldn’t tell if his eyes actually became bigger when he realized what was happening or if it just seemed like it because his body was withering at such a rapid rate.  His hair-line seemed to recede as she watched and his gaunt complexion resembled more of a skeleton than a human body.  She pulled the small doll from her pocket and lingered before she pushed the last pin into the woven material that covered its chest.  A small sigh escaped her lips and she plunged the final pin into the doll.  What remained of his skin and bones hastily turned to dust and fell to the cobblestone street.

She stood idle for a few moments and watched as the ants began to march single file through the crack in the stone.  Like a well trained army, they worked as a team to circle the tiny carrion and haul the remains of the lifeless heart down the hole to take home as a trophy.  Little did they know, the spell she had created would only allow that heart to exist for mere minutes after the rest of his body had disappeared.  The ants would get it into the hole but it would never remain solid long enough to present it to the colony.

As she walked away, she carefully removed each pin remembering the outcome that each jab had on his physical being.  She tossed the pins in the gutter and placed the doll safely back in her pocket, hoping, once again, this would be the last time she would need it.

~~

mutant750-wk

Written for the Grammar Ghoul Challenge – to use the picture above – Just a lonely heart by Marina Carvalho
is licensed under CC by 2.0
,  and the word crash with the following definition – Move or cause to move with force, speed, and sudden loud noise