Poems: A Reading of the game of boxes

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A book purchased at Indy Reads. I like her style, voice. Poetic fragments of stories told in concise language, with much left to imagination. The subject matter of relationships, both with lovers and with children, give reason to celebrate our excess and absence of connection.

Chorus (p.19)

The ones we love fall asleep
to our abandon,
we are always abandoning them
and then finding them,
we’d be lost could we not
abandon them, could we not
find and abandon them.

Tell no one where we go at night
in our sleep, how far we walk,
toward what, but accompany us
to the soundings, the quicksands,
and the rocks.

Her average rating on Goodreads is 3.69. One critic gave her zero stars, stating he “was pretty unimpressed by this work…nothing challenges, nothing is unique or traditional.” He goes on to say “it reads like someone who wanted to write what she always thought poetry was but never considered what it could be.”

Another reviewer gave her one star with “reading this collection is the limited range of poetic resources on display…the plainspoken voice can only carry a reader’s interest so far.”

For those who enjoyed her poems, one reviewer was “won over by the plainspoken…playfulness and the repetition.”

Susan said “you need to read if you are of this century but also a little bit lost in the past.”

Other words to describe her were “abstract but not over the edge”, “easy to read with a density to them”, “Surprising. Haunting in a delicious way.” and then “the language of the poems…often felt unfinished or like they were missing something or like I was missing something.”

Poetry, for the consumer, is really about the pull into the story far more than the textbook understanding of what a poem is or could be.  The Game of Boxes is 4/5 stars for me, but then I am not a critic of poetry, but rather a consumer. So really, what do I know about critically assessing others language other than if it moves me, like a man leading in dance, then I confess my love.

Indy Reads

Indy Reads is a nonprofit bookstore run to support literacy programs for adults and families in Central Marion County and the City of Indianapolis.  This was my first visit and well worth a trip from anywhere in Central Indiana.  Paperbacks are $5.99 and hardbacks are $6.99 and they have rare books for sale as well.  Currently (1/12/2018) they have a complete set, five volumes, of Virginia Woolf’s Diary for $60.00.  And they have a great collection of Poetry….

I ended up purchasing some modern poet’s books I had never read before and whose style I enjoyed by a quick glance.

Nicholas Christopher The Creation of the Night Sky
Carolina Ebeid You Ask Me to Talk About the Interior
Chuck Carlise In One Version of the Story
Catherine Barnett the game of boxes

Indy Reads has a quality children’s book section. Do note the children’s books are not organized in any fashion so you should plan on spending some time looking through the shelves of books.

They have a Facebook page, a website, and always need volunteers.  Oh, not to forget, they enthusiastically support local artists and writers with ongoing programs and opportunities to display works for sale.  If you ever find yourself in Indy, do stop by.

A dream project

It really hurts to pack my books away. I dream of August or September when I hope to be in a new house. Make it my home. And put all these books back on a shelf.

And then I hope, a new scene (maybe Boston, hope I have not jinxed my future by saying it out loud) means a new thought process and all these hidden projects sitting on my shelves will come to life.  I have wanted to write children’s books for quite some time.  My favorite children’s illustrator/author is Lois Ehlert.  I love her folk art style and the color that embellishes her pages.  The simple stories she writes captures a child’s imagination.  And mine. (Some day I hope I can organize my collections as she has done below.)

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That really could be me pictured in her book.  I spent every summer riding my bike to the library.  I would come home with a pile of books, weighing more than I did, and would sit in my tent in the backyard, reading and dreaming of the world.  To this day, I still have no clue what life means, other than love is precious and relationships are what keeps us from falling too deep into despair.  Oh! if I only practiced my wisdom.  I often find myself sheltering from the world still…. hidden in my writing room dreaming of possibilities.

img_3213-1The above illustration is quite helpful to me.  To plan the whole book at once… ah! makes so much sense!   This will take a whole lot of discipline on my part, as I often write everything without planning.  My learning to become more intentional in creative habits, will be a positive step in my growth as an artist.  (I said it! Am i?)

Although, I do need a sense of mindless space to generate ideas but then will utilize her method to organize my chaos.  🙂

If you have children in your life, I recommend this book highly.  She had an exhibit at the Milwaukee Museum of Art a while back and I was able to purchase it there.  I am sure it is available on Amazon if you are interested.

Happy writing, Jeanne

There must be more… margin release

Indian Rocks Beach FL 2017

That would be me, reading Sebnem Sander’s new book “Ripples on the Pond” published December 4, 2017. Here is my review…

Brought a book along, to read, while on the white sands of the Gulf of Mexico. From Clearwater to Venice, Sebnem travels along, telling stories the waves often whisper and the gulls cry out loud. This book is for those who oft think and find beauty in everything or yearn to live mindfully. Each story has you linger a bit longer, while waiting for a sunset… or perhaps you are the person anticipating the sun rise. A real treat! A fantastic beach read!

I will treasure new stories this whole week, recklessly abandoned to my self… let each tale immerse into me, along with my tequila sunrise. You are a true delight to read Sebnem!

Here is her WordPress blog. Her book is available on Amazon now. Join me on Goodreads as Jeanne Elizabeth.

And to inspire your next write… a little music from Sebnem’s short story “The Typewriter” in memory of Sam Shepard.

(Day Two of White Sands)

going through this frenzy

purchasing books

every title imaginable about

suicide and why, these voices reside

build a home, hoping to rest -a while.

A while later, it all starts again,

depression, anxiety, r.d. laing…

this divided self reads jung and admires van Gogh

the Plath’s and Woolf’s of this world

we meet-up, browse universal thoughts, written in black

being ghosts of past

haunting our minds today.

Six Word Story

Without readers, what are writers worth?

May i say, it seems only natural to thank all the lovely people in the blogosphere. This blog was started as a conversation with the vast unknown. The surprise is the connectivity that slowly occurred. And occurs.

I haven’t bothered to count the years. It’s been many. I allowed a small piece of me to emerge. People are much too complex to truly understand another. We cannot possibly hope to solve our problems, in ourselves or around us. What i found is we spread peace by listening.

I hear you read my words, as i read them back to myself. There exists a glimmer, a smile, a tear. On occasion, a cringe, or no interaction at all. I ask, where is the meaning here?

As i consider tomorrow, i cringe. If i am alive, i will continue to write. To write is to breathe for me. Each word alive until it lies on the paper. Once laid, resurrected or buried.

I admit, i am a lazy writer. Whatever pops into my head i lay down. Give it away. Extend permission to you, to do with it what you must.

For me, I acknowledge past words can (should) be crafted better. Or omitted all together. I believe i am growing as a writer. I am learning to ask myself “Did i solely write this to release emotion? Or is there a greater message?”

My writing challenge for 2018 is to be more cognizant of my thoughts. Do my words help or harm, me and you? Are my thoughts rubbish, even worth penning? I admit, the words i write strike fear in my heart. This is my journey. After all. Thank you for inviting me in.

i hope you continue to read my words, often raw and unedited. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Happy writing, J ✍️

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e, with no name, is one of my companions along for this ride. On his wings he holds a few American authors. Dickinson. Alcott. Wharton. Frost. Missing would be Plath and Henry James. And then there is Woolf.

Absence (makes the heart grow fonder?)

These two books just appeared in my mailbox a few minutes ago. They are still cold from the frigid air, but it won’t take long to warm them up.

I have not had a new Yalom book to read, in forever!! I was beside myself to order these books (published 2015/1996 respectively) and I am off to read…

Let you know when I come up to breathe. 😁 And if you are on Goodreads, lets connect. Here is where I am

Each book, a door. A door I never want to shut.

Putting me aside, again

2017

Expressing my desire to find rhythm in my words, Rita Dove was recommended reading for a poet who dances on paper.  Early this year, when I finally got around to seriously read her work, I preordered a new publication, a recent compilation of her 30 years of writing and dove in, head first.

Ars Poetica

Thirty miles to the only decent restaurant
was nothing, a blink
in the long dull stare of Wyoming.
Halfway there the unknown but terribly
important essayist yelled Stop!
I wanna be in this; and walked
fifteen yards onto the land
before sky bore down and he came running,
crying Jesus — there’s nothing out there!

I once met an Australian novelist
who told me he never learned to cook
because it robbed creative energy.
What he wanted most was
to be mute; he stacked up pages;
he entered each day with an ax.

What I want is this poem to be small,
a ghost town
on the larger map of wills.
Then you can pencil me in as a hawk:
a traveling x-marks-the-spot.

I actually needed to be resuscitated after I read that.  I got lost on a lonely road and was found by Rita Dove.  I suppose now, only now will I never look back.  Again.  Praying I never veer too far away, again.


2016

Claude Wilkinsen, in his own right, dances, and taught us to dance, during a poetry workshop in Santa Fe, at The Glen. This was my first, get down and dirty, learn the craft of poetry and get stuck in the mud, fall in love, and let the words become your destination, workshop.

Midsummer 

The rain stops. It’s dusk
and the sky is a foreign tangerine;
the only music is huddled doves,
frogs wanting more rain. Mimosas
and roses regain their composure.

Steam rises like a herd
of souls. And just over
the electric next ridge,
a raven-haired gypsy
sends her charms for me.


2018

Will I ever put myself aside, long enough to not be known, but be read, and the only thing seen is your dream?  Happy writing, J