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Dream: 1.2.2017

January 2, 2017

I’m a freshman in high school. The school year is drawing to a close, but I’m panicking because I have a paper I haven’t even started writing that’s due soon. I haven’t carved out the time to write it because I haven’t been able to settle on a topic; I keep getting busier, with everything else that needs finishing up, so I never have the breathing room to think about what I’d actually like to address. So if I were to talk to my teacher, to ask for an extension, I don’t even have a tangible reason why I’ve made no progress. I’m stuck, but time is moving forward.

+++

NOTES:

2012–2015, on this blog, I averaged 109,055 words per year, in an average of 115 posts per year. In 2016, on this blog, I wrote 35,414 words in 50 posts.

I’m writing less.

Some of that is due to spending a lot of time reading (as I always have). Most of it, isn’t.

I’ve been keeping myself very busy doing things that don’t further any of my own aims. And then, when free time surprises me by appearing, I dither it away.

=

I’ve been reading too much. Not too many books, so much as… too much time spent suspended in someone else’s life, being someone else.

=

It’s only in dreams that I interact face-to-face meaningfully with anyone who isn’t Spouse. I miss that, but truthfully, it was almost-never very satisfying. Reading fiction, I get to participate in social situations that are interesting.

Probably some people’s real lives are like that, but mine wasn’t. People at work could sometimes be interesting, but often, outside of the job, they were utterly dull. Which makes it seem like it was the job that was interesting, not the person doing it, but that’s not quite right either.

On a job, you can talk process, because you’re all invested in getting things accomplished, and process is part of problem solving. Off a job, other people don’t seem to think about process much at all. But I do.

I enjoy hearing other people discuss processes I don’t even understand. If I can somehow participate, even better. (But then, why would such people listen to me, if I don’t ‘know’ anything? Well, they wouldn’t.)

It’s not just talking I miss. It’s being listened to. It’s being sought out as a subject expert. It’s discussing things of interest (with someone besides Spouse, as I have many more interests than he does).

=

But I’ve spent… months and months, maybe even years, trying to recreate something like what was available when I worked. And I have utterly failed.

People don’t enjoy talking to me. And they definitely don’t enjoy listening to me.

=

I need to try something else.

Here’s an image I thought of recently: I’m like a fish who’s been spending increasing amounts of time in marsh when the tide’s out. I’m gasping in the air, I’m suffocating, I can’t swim because there’s air where there should be water. But I keep trying to talk to… ducks. And they don’t understand me, and they don’t care, and I’m slowly dying, but I’m just so lonely that I keep trying, all day.

Instead, I should spend tide-out time buried in mud, waiting for the tide to come back in.

I’ve gotten my own rhythms all out of whack. I need to relearn what being a fish is.

+++

I think my dream was alerting me to how all these activities I’ve been doing have been like air, displacing my water. When I’m back to swimming freely, surrounded by volumes of water and space to move around in, my whiskers will again pick up electrical signals, I’ll again hear whispers. I’ll find subtle rhythms that are my own, long lost.

And I’ll write.

Creative Year in Review ~ 2016

December 30, 2016

Writing poetry

  • First poem published by a lit journal! Spiral Orb, issue Twelve
  • People in 16 states + Washington, DC / 21 watersheds [HUC8’s] have read or heard my poems.
  • Wrote my first poem mixing English with Spanish (title is in Spanish), plus a word or two in Anishinaabe, Gaelic, Lithuanian, Maltese.
  • Wrote a poem whose title is a created compound word in Gaelic.

 

Conceptualizing

  • Began a spatial–dispersed poem {emergent, constellation}
  • Have a name for what I’m doing ~ vallo
  • Re-imagining how I number poems.
  • Section separators in daybook => sketches of my moods. Noticed I’m incorporating a lot more white space into my entries.
  • Feeling rhythms of time differently. Becoming aware of (personal) fluctuations, subtle patterns, formerly overlooked.

 

Emotion~color~flavor Synesthesia

  • Blue and Orange are a significant colorway related to my genders. (I’ve been wearing a lot of outfits including both colors, but the combination also appears in many of my photos this year.)
  • Custom coffee mix: varying amounts of clove, nutmeg, and (freshly-ground) black pepper, added to freshly-ground coffee beans. Sometimes cinnamon; zests & peels of Meyer lemons, clementines.

 

Interior Design

  • Studio design beginning to resemble a forest outright, not just metaphorically:
    • Streambed lined with polished stones;
    • Storage structures of various heights, as symbolic trees;
    • Tree branches, from various types of trees, scattered throughout;
    • There are several more living plants (3 transplants, and 1 grown from seeds), plus a pot full of cacti with pink flowers.
  • Fabric for studio color scheme purchased; contents of some shelves concealed with tissue paper, in blue-green and yellow-green.
  • Writing nook now has a color scheme: shades of blue-green and yellow-green, accented with purple and pink. Contents of shelves concealed with fabric; chair has been slipcovered. {Amelia-friendly}
  • Bedroom now has a color scheme: robin’s-egg-blue and spring green, accented with orange. {Amelia-friendly}

 

Travel

  • Chincoteague Island, VA ~ April
  • Harpers Ferry, WV ~ June
  • New Mexico ~ northern and Albuquerque ~ September

 

Photography

  • Took photos with main (red) camera, and phone all year.
  • [[Spouse had a solo show of framed photographic prints at the Delaplaine Arts Center, Frederick, MD.]]

 

Friendship

  • I’ve been corresponding with a poetry penpal since March.
  • Sent out 12 Winter Holiday cards, mostly to Twitter-friends (who span 11 time zones).

 

Visual texts

  • Watched 73 feature films, including
  • 14 foreign films.
  • {Spouse is making videos, and} I’m thinking about making videos.

 

Reading

  • Read 332 books all the way through;
  • Read (at least) 53 books part of the way.
  • 6 periods of non-reading.

 

Writing prose

  • Wrote 35,435 words in 50 blog posts (including this one). This year had the fewest number of posts, and the second-fewest number of words.
  • {10.19.09–12.30.16 inclusive, have written 568,734 words in 730 blog posts.}

 

Health

  • {Red§cted}
  • My GI issues are being managed fairly successfully.
  • B: 13.5 (9), 25; P: (4), 5

 

Potager [balcony garden]

 

Social Media

  • Still on Twitter.
  • Joined Instagram.
  • Currently supporting 12 creators on Patreon.

 

+++

Reading List 13 of 2016

December 28, 2016

Covers the period from 12.1.2016 through 12.28.16

I/we own 11 of these items. I saw 3 movies in the cinema; 1 on my phone; 4 on Netflix. Baltimore County Public Library system supplied 19 of the books and movies; libraries in other parts of Maryland, via Inter-Library Loan, supplied the other 28.

 

Films, chosen by me:

  1. Annie [2014], dir. Will Gluck
  2. Arrival, dir. Denis Villeneuve
  3. Bend It Like Beckham, dir. Gurinder Chadha
  4. Hail, Caesar!, dir. Joel Coen and Ethan Coen
  5. Love at First Fight, dir. Thomas Cailley
  6. Oppressed Majority, dir. Eleonore Pourriat
  7. Pitch Perfect, dir. Jason Moore
  8. The Secret Life of Bees [director’s cut], dir. Gina Prince-Bythewood
  9. Sirens, dir. John Duigan
  10. Today’s Special, dir. David Kaplan

 

Films, chosen by Spouse:

  1. A Royal Night Out, dir. Julian Jarrold
  2. Cake, dir. Daniel Barnz
  3. Certified Copy, dir. Abbas Kiarostami
  4. Fantastic Beasts…, dir. David Yates
  5. Frozen, dir. Chris Buck and Jennifer Lee
  6. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, dir. Mike Newell
  7. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, dir. David Yates
  8. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, dir. David Yates
  9. The Imitation Game, dir. Morten Tyldum
  10. Pitch Perfect 2, dir. Elizabeth Banks
  11. Rogue One, dir. Gareth Edwards
  12. Tracks, dir. John Curran

 

SFF:

  1. A Taste of Honey by Kai Ashante Wilson
  2. Babel–17 by Samuel R. Delany
  3. The Geek Feminist Revolution by Kameron Hurley
  4. Mother of Souls by Heather Rose Jones
  5. The Stone Boatmen by Sarah Tolmie
  6. The Sorcerer of the Wildeeps by Kai Ashante Wilson
  7. Tomb of the Fathers: A Lydia Duluth Adventure by Eleanor Arnason
  8. Vermilion by Molly Tanzer
  9. The 2015 Rhysling Anthology, edited by Rich Ristow
  10. The 2016 Rhysling Anthology, edited by Charles Christian

 

Latinx:

  1. Afro-Cuban Poetry de Oshún a Yemayá by José Sánchez-Boudy, tr. Claudio Freixas
  2. FSG Book of 20th Century Latin American Poetry: An Anthology, edited by Ilan Stavans
  3. Looking Out, Looking In: Anthology of Latino Poetry, edited by William Luis
  4. The Place Names of New Mexico, revised edition by Robert Hixson Julyan

 

Thinking about glyphs:

  1. Alphabetical: How Every Letter Tells a Story by Michael Rosen
  2. Cuneiform by Irving Finkel and Jonathan Taylor
  3. Essential Swahili Dictionary by D. V. Perrott
  4. Farsi–English / English–Farsi (Persian) by A. M. Miandji
  5. Hindi, Urdu & Bengali phrasebook and dictionary by Lonely Planet
  6. Reading the Mayan Glyphs by Michael D. Coe
  7. Say It Right in Thai by Clyde Peters
  8. Visual Bilingual Dictionary: Arabic and English
  9. Visual Bilingual Dictionary: Mandarin Chinese and English

 

Poetry:

  1. A Long High Whistle: Selected Columns on Poetry by David Biespiel
  2. Compass Rose by Arthur Sze
  3. Green Movement Poets, edited by Rosemary M. Canfield Reisman
  4. The Nesting Ground by David Wagoner
  5. On the History, System, and Varieties of Turkish Poetry by J. W. Redhouse {published 1879}
  6. The Poet Speaks: Interviews with Contemporary Poets… [1960s, mostly English poets], general editor Peter Orr
  7. Soviet Poets and Poetry by Alexander S. Kaun {published 1943}
  8. The Space Between Our Footsteps, selected by Naomi Shihab Nye
  9. Through the Forest: Poems, 1977–1987 by David Wagoner
  10. The Voronezh Notebooks — Poems, 1935–1937 by Osip Mandelstam, tr. Richard and Elizabeth McKane
  11. Who Shall Be the Sun? by David Wagoner

 

Memoir:

  1. Balsamroot by Mary Clearman Blew
  2. Coast Range: A Collection from the Pacific Edge by Nick Neely
  3. The Narrow Door: A Memoir of Friendship by Paul Lisicky
  4. This is Not the Ivy League by Mary Clearman Blew

 

Miscellaneous:

  1. [Fiction] Age of Consent by Marti Leimbach
  2. The Bloody Crossroads: Where Literature and Politics Meet by Norman Podhoretz
  3. Give and Take by Adam Grant
  4. Visual Language for Designers by Connie Malamed
  5. The World Beyond Your Head by Matthew B. Crawford
  6. Wrestling with Moses [Jane Jacobs] by Anthony Flint

+++

Reading List 12 of 2016

November 30, 2016

Covers the period from 11.6.2016 through 11.30.16

I own 5 of these items. Baltimore County Public Library system supplied 2 of the books and movies; libraries in other parts of Maryland, via Inter-Library Loan, supplied the other 23.

 

Poetry:

  1. Collected Poems by Robert Hayden
  2. Contemporary Polish Poetry, 1925–1975, edited by Madeline G. Levine
  3. Dying for Beauty by Gail Wronsky
  4. Like Water on Stone [Armenian genocide, in verse] by Dana Walrath
  5. Lunch Poems by Frank O’Hara
  6. Micrographia by Emily Wilson
  7. The Redshifting Web: Poems, 1970–1998 by Arthur Sze
  8. Selected Poems by Diana Der-Hovanessian
  9. Unseen Hand by Adam Zagajewski
  10. What I Say: Innovative Poetry by Black Writers in America, edited by Aldon Lynn Nielsen and Lauri Ramey

 

History:

  1. And the World Stood Silent: Sephardic Poetry of the Holocaust, translated and with commentaries by Isaac Jack Lévy
  2. Anthology of Armenian Poetry, tr. & ed. Diana Der Hovanessian and Marzbad Margossian
  3. The Captive Mind by Czeslaw Milosz, translated by Jane Zielonko
  4. The Human Tradition in the Black Atlantic, 1500–2000, edited by Beatriz Mamigonian and Karen Racine
  5. Notes from No Man’s Land: American Essays by Eula Biss
  6. Onions and Cucumbers and Plums: 46 Yiddish Poems in English, edited by Sarah Zweig Betsky
  7. Proletpen: America’s Rebel Yiddish Poets, translated by Amelia Glaser
  8. Revolutions in Reverse by David Graeber
  9. Warsaw, Lodz, Vilna: The Holocaust Ghettos by Linda Jacobs Altman
  10. [Film] Woman in Gold, dir. Simon Curtis

 

On Writing, on Living:

  1. About Writing by Samuel R. Delany
  2. Body of Work by Pamela Slim
  3. How We Learn by Benedict Carey
  4. The Motion of Light in Water by Samuel R. Delany
  5. On Living by Kerry Egan
  6. Upstream: Selected Essays by Mary Oliver

 

Miscellaneous:

  1. The Art of Movement by Ken Browar and Deborah Ory of NYC Dance Project
  2. From Mouse to Mermaid: The Politics of Film, Gender, and Culture, edited by Elizabeth Bell, et al.
  3. How to be a High School Superstar by Cal Newport
  4. [Fiction] In the Language of Miracles by Rajia Hassib

 

+++

More on a dream, 11.25.16

November 25, 2016

META-META NOTES:

Imagine the people in the dream who were members of the exclusive writing club: they attend meetings every week, where they do writing exercises. Presumably they also attend competitions with writing students from other schools (a la Harry Potter 4).

They have special teachers.

And yet. Dream-Mea shows up, not knowing anything about any of that. Not even knowing this ritual is related to writing. She sits for an unknown exam — no studying, no practicing — and she passes.

Her results card contains (at least) 4 letters. They all indicate… something of interest.

Why would I need the super-special-exclusive club?

Why would I want it?

Maybe sitting the exam wasn’t to show them I belong with them so much as… show me we’re already peers, however I got there.

And having gotten there — to writing (well), by my own devices — what could they provide me that I could use?

=

I wasn’t accorded the lovely calligraphy, you’ll recall: I got block letters. And since I never actually saw my name spelled out, I’m not sure I even got that. All I saw for sure was the card conflating me with my friend, as if we were one person.

Maybe we were, at that. It’s clear to me that Cathy Fj was a trickster figure in this dream. How did she know about the exam at all? Did she sit for it? Was she just there to convey me to the right place at the right time?

Which perhaps argues I have within me what I need to hold my own.

Why Father Lennon then?

Well, who else would’ve brought to mind exactly “Glen Ellyn and Naperville” without any excess emotional baggage? He wasn’t a proctor; he wasn’t a student. He didn’t speak to me at all.

He was familiar, which was grounding. But he didn’t ask anything of me. His presence just signaled… you know who you are. You can do this.

=

I did well on the exam.

=

A week or so ago, I suddenly realized the name of a former blog… should be a glyph. Except how would I construct a glyph? I searched Inter-Library Loan for any book that mentioned glyphs, and have begun reading. I was reading about Mayan glyphs before bed last night/this morning.

=

I had to leave it so I could love it, but there are many Indiana trees I still think of fondly, to this day. Not just types that I learned to identify, but individual trees that were my friends. If living in Indiana had been more Mea-with-trees, and less Mea-working-in-human-environments-where-she-is-always-a-misfit, maybe I could have stayed there.

Everywhere I’ve lived, I’ve been Mea-with-trees.

I’ve generally worked, too, though, so I’ve also been Mea-the misfit. But here in Maryland, I worked in 2 jobs, which comprised a little less than 9 months. By the time I began blogging in October 2009, 16.5 months after we’d arrived, I was (although I didn’t know it yet) permanently unemployed.

Here in Maryland, as nowhere else adult me has lived, I’ve been free to be Mea-with-trees.

Mea-with-(Maryland)-trees began blogging 7 years ago, and still blogs. Mea-with-(Maryland)-trees began writing poetry 5 years ago, and still writes poetry.

Since she began tracking, in 2011, Mea-with-(Maryland)-trees has read 600 books on literary topics, including 38 anthologies of essays, 106 poetry anthologies, 226 poetry collections, and 19 chapbooks.

Mea-with-trees, Maryland or otherwise, has a sensibility I’ve not seen anywhere else, including amongst nature writers or poets.

{{Mea-with-trees should probably be a glyph.}}

=

The last time I lamented on this blog that I didn’t receive the kind of feedback from other humans that I wanted, I received feedback that led me to stop allowing comments on this blog.

Maybe the D, L, E, C notations on the yellow card in the dream would’ve been similar.

{{Yellow is a power color for me.}}

What do I really need to hear from other people?

Um.

On the rare occasions that I’ve received positive feedback, it generally didn’t tell me what I actually wanted to know. So I had to try to contort how I asked for more, to hopefully receive a better class of data. People get tired of my questions long before I receive anything in the ballpark of what I was seeking.

What I would want from other people is data I can’t gather on my own. For instance, input from sensors I don’t have; streams of data I can’t perceive.

I’m not sure if I’ve ever received feedback like that. Instead, I get 1) what other people think I should want (possibly what they think they would want, if they were me), or 2) what other people feel is appropriate for someone-like-me. Often, the other person shames me for wanting things I don’t “deserve”.

Probably in the dream, I was supposed to feel like I should earn “deserving” to know the D, L, E, C results. But in all likelihood, D, L, E, C, would’ve been meaningless and irrelevant to me.

Why do I even want feedback on my writing? Well, largely because I want colleagues to “talk process” with.

Maybe I’ve been searching for colleagues for the wrong type of process: not writing process, but spiritual process?

Which perhaps frees me up from having to seek out human colleagues, with their clunky worldviews that I don’t understand.

Maybe seeking feedback at all is part of another problem I’m creating for myself.

+++

I keep trying to stay friendly and accessible before writing so that once I have something in hand, I can ease into showing more bits of the real me to people who think they know me. I spend so much energy on “friendly and accessible”, I have little left for, you know, the writing that addresses what I need to mull over.

I’m 50 years old, and I’ve just realized, today, that I’m Mea-with-trees?!? My priorities are a tangled mess.

All the people who aren’t going to take seriously 1) what I say/write, or 2) who I am, are people whose opinions about me, about anything, I can stop paying attention to. Now.

What would Mea-with-trees write?

Dream: 11.25.2016

November 25, 2016

I’m approximately 17 years old. I enter a large classroom with my [junior high] friend Cathy F. As we’re walking towards our seats, I notice many students’ desks display have square, cream-colored envelopes with elaborate calligraphy in green or plum spelling out their names. I wonder why.

It’s probably just another thing that won’t apply to me.

=

Later, Cathy leads me up several floors to an auditorium I’ve never been in before. I see some of the calligraphied envelopes at a few seats, many of which are unoccupied.

There’s a receptionist of sorts, who directs us to “find our names”. I wonder how my name could actually be there, since I have no idea what any of this is about.

Some of the names in the boxes are the beautiful calligraphy, but most are in more-prosaic large block letters.

Under F, where I’m looking, a woman teacher? proctor? shows up and pulls out a card [large block lettering, green ink] that says “Fiadhig–, Cathy”. I tell her the card is wrong. I say, “No one spells their name with those letters except me. It’s the beginning of ‘Fiadhiglas’. And I’m the only Fiadhiglas in the whole world, so there can’t be a Cathy with that name.” I’m expecting her to tear the card up, maybe apologize, but it’s like she didn’t even hear me.

I wonder if I’m invisible to everyone but Cathy.

=

I find a seat in a long row, second from the aisle [to my left]. As I get settled, I notice the person to my right is Father Lennon. I remark, “it’s a good thing I didn’t know about this test last night, or I would’ve been too anxious to sleep!”

I still don’t know why I’m there, or what the test will be about.

=

I take the test, which requires a lot of writing, by hand, on paper.

[It turns out to have been a test of my critical thinking and writing skills, not a subject matter exam.]

I pass.

=

While awaiting my turn at detailed feedback, a man proctor brings me over to a different section. There are a bunch of more-advanced students standing around in small cubicles, along with large tomes that show where they’re from.

The proctor shepherding me leads me to a section that contains people from the Midwest. I see that the last person in this row seems to be Kansas, and I expect we’ll stop there, but the proctor stops at the person just before. A boy/man of about 20, crewcut, pale. The proctor starts talking to the man, but I’m arrested by the cover of the book: a stylized sycamore tree. I realize the man must be from Indiana, and yes, the proctor is mentioning the Indianapolis 500. But the tree! I recognize it. I’m overcome with deep emotion; tears pour down my face. Luckily the men are absorbed, talking, and don’t notice, don’t ask me questions.

=

A woman proctor is talking with Cathy and me. She’s glad that we’ve (so surprisingly) done well enough to join the (exclusive, unadvertised) writing club where we’ll have years to make improvements in our skills!

It’s true when I reflect back on the other names I saw on envelopes, back in our classroom, that they were of high-status people with bright futures. It’s also true such people likely don’t even know my name, and would never have invited me to join them.

But wait! I suddenly recall I’m a senior, so I just have 1 year. (How is it that the woman proctor doesn’t know this about me? Has anyone else not on a list ever showed up at the test? Taken it, and passed? Maybe not.)

=

Later, I’m walking with a different woman proctor. She hands me a 4” x 6” yellow card. My name is indicated [in glyphs] in the center; there are individual Roman letters in each of the corners: D, L, E, C. [There may be others that I no longer recall.]

I ask the woman what the letters mean. She says, “oh, you’ll find out later.” Without losing a beat, I say, “but this is a dream! I won’t find out later! If you tell me now, I’ll remember, and I’ll know something important!”

She seems amused, but she refuses to tell me anything.

I speak to a second woman proctor, more urgently, and she also refuses to elaborate.

Half-awake, I hear what I think is Spouse in an adjacent room, so I try harder to stay within the dream. I wake up.

+++

NOTES:

This wasn’t the usual kind of “I’m back in high school taking an exam I haven’t studied for” dream, because I have zero recollection of the test itself. Also, I passed it.

I haven’t seen Cathy F since we were 15 or so. We did not attend the same high school. She was not a studious girl, so her presence in this dream is odd. Her last name does begin with “Fj”, though, so cards with our surnames would’ve been close together.

Father Lennon was the priest of our parish in Glen Ellyn. Later, when we lived in Naperville, he got assigned to our parish there too. I haven’t seen him since, probably, high school (30+ years).

=

When I was in high school, I actually loved taking academic tests. I might have been nervous the night before, but it was mostly excitement — I relished testing my mettle. And I have always done exceptionally well on high-pressure exams. Adrenaline kicks in, and I hyperfocus. Time slows down, and I’m in the zone.

17 year old me, if she found herself in the position of unexpectedly taking a high-pressure mystery exam… would have been exhilarated.

I don’t quite know how 50 year old me would feel, as the last high-pressure exam I took might have been my GREs (in my 30s). And for the first time in my life, I did… middling. And they weren’t fun either.

Also, since we’ve moved to Maryland, and I have nothing but free time, my anxiety levels have skyrocketed. Nowadays when I have anything important the next day, anxiety prevents me from being sleepy often for several nights before. I then am desperately tired on top of ordinary worries while whatever it is is going on.

Spouse and I were watching Harry Potter 5 last night, and I mentioned to him how I didn’t miss taking timed exams.

Now that I think about it, it’s quite odd in a way how much I enjoyed taking exams when I was in school (or IQ tests, with a psychologist or whomever administers those), but now that I am free to do all the learning I want, in the subjects I choose, there are no exams, and I don’t miss them.

Well, school is human-social. And doing well on tests confers a type of social status. I’m not Likable (even my own family of origin largely despises me), so I had no shot at reasonable status if I hadn’t been 1) really good at tests, and 2) really smart. Because of my (undiagnosed) autism, I didn’t even realize, all those years, that people were grappling over status all along. That was all invisible to me. That’s a game I can’t play, never mind excel at.

=

The tree on the book cover didn’t actually look like a sycamore, but I somehow knew it was one. That’s what I meant by recognizing it.

I learned to identify a great many trees while I lived in Indiana — I took a class in Plant Communities. So, trees I’d seen all my life, I suddenly knew what they were, and where they liked to grow, among which neighbors. Sycamores have been an especial favorite ever since. They tend to grow along rivers and streams.

There’s also some Purdue connection with sycamores. I attended Purdue for a year.

=

Usually in a lucid dream, I’m feeling that it’s a dream as it’s unfolding, and I’m making choices all along to do cool stuff. This wasn’t like that. As I said the words, “but this is a dream!”, I still wasn’t even feeling anything like that at all. I didn’t have the sense that I could choose some crazy thing to illuminate what I wanted to know [look in secret records, etc.] — I still felt like I had to depend on what someone was willing to tell me directly.

+++

META-NOTES:

Last night/early this morning, I ran aground on yet another attempt to find a sub-genre of writing where my writing seems to fit.

I read anthologies of poems, essays, etc., but none of them ever seem like the types of things I might write. The themes and motifs don’t appeal to me. I don’t have the type of life that lends itself to writing about similar issues. I definitely don’t have the academic background, credentials, or connections, that people who become authors do.

All I seem to have is… a desire to explore the world, to feel alive within it, and to write about it.

Joy, friendship, kinship.

Not-knowing, uncertainty about every thing, ambiguous possibilities.

List: tree types

November 19, 2016

I have so many thoughts about the election, but so far they remain a tangle of nettlesome threads.

+++

If I could remember where on Twitter I read the suggestion of making (alphabetical) lists to relieve anxiety, I would give that person credit.

+++

These are off the top of my head.

 

A – alder, ash, aspen, avocado, apple, acacia, almond

B – beech, birch, banyan, baobab, bottle, banana, blue spruce, bald cypress, boxwood

C – cherry, crab apple, catalpa, cottonwood, crape myrtle, cacao, coffee, chestnut, cinnamon

D – dogwood

E – elder, elm, ebony

F – fir, fig

G – gum

H – hawthorn, honey locust, holly, hemlock, hickory, hackberry, hazelnut

I – ironwood

J – jack pine, jacaranda

K – kauri, kumquat, Kentucky coffee

L – lime, linden, lemon, live oak

M – maple, magnolia, mesquite, mahogany, madrone, mangrove, mango, mountain laurel

O – olive, osage orange, oak

P – pear, persimmon, paw paw, pecan, peach, papaya

Q – quince, queen of heaven*

R – rhododendron, rowan, redwood, redbud

S – staghorn sumac, sycamore, sweetgum, sourwood, sassafras, serviceberry, sequoia

T – tulip poplar, teak

W – willow, walnut, witch hazel

Y – yew, yellowwood

 

*apparently the common name is actually “tree of heaven”, Ailanthus altissima