You Think You Know

The sky I was born under
was mysteriously calm
as if holding its breath
awaiting the sound
of whatever I turned out to be

In broad daylight
with the moon overhead
the stars awaited their fall

For some time later
the planets would align
under differing orders
than this

It was time then and now
as the seasons just changed
over and over they found
something amiss
in the clouded clear sky
opening slowly to flame


"You think you know, what's to come, what you are. You haven't even begun." ~ Tara in "Restless" (Buffy, season 4)


Going Dark

I worry too much. I have a lot of time to think. This week I had too much. I felt the need to "Go Dark" for a day. I was online in the evening for about an hour or so, but the rest of the day was offline.

I'm at home with my kids all day, and let's face it: there are only certain parts of my brain that are stimulated by repeating letters of the alphabet over and over to my 2yo and playing silly guessing games with my 6yo. I love to color, but I can't do that for 12 hours straight either. I can now recite most of Cars and nearly every Winnie the Pooh movie, answer Elmo's questions in my sleep, and put together most of the puzzles and games in our house without paying attention to what I'm doing.

There are a million projects that need attention around my house, but I honestly don't have the energy or motivation to do many of them (particularly when it's more pleasant to sit and chat or surf online). Plus, it's hard to do them with a 2yo undoing everything faster than you can even do it. Now that my hubby is home during the day, I've actually been able to accomplish a few of those things I've been neglecting. It's nice, but honestly, it wears me out. I'm used to having quiet, low key, low energy days.

At any rate, I've gotten used to spending most of my day online. It's not uncommon to sit down to check my email and then somehow realize the morning is gone. The online world is my escape, my connection to people outside these four walls. I honestly have no clue how stay-at-home moms survived before the internet. I'm plugged in and connected all day. I'm up and down, here and there, but I'm always connected.

And, as nice as it is to have that connection, it's not always a good thing. It makes it easier to neglect the little things around my house, both tasks and children sometimes. I've become the queen of procrastination because there's plenty of time tomorrow to do that. I smile and nod at the incessant "knock-knock" jokes without really listening.

All of that is to say, I've been pondering for a while now taking a day each week to be offline. Here's why:
  1. Our worship team has been discussing the spiritual discipline of fasting. For medical reasons, it's not practical for me to skip meals (nor is it healthy), but there are other things that intrude upon my relationship with God far more than food, and these are the things I need to be cautious of.
  2. I have been discussing my internet reliance with a group of friends in an online forum. It's kind of difficult to explain the nature of our relationship, but suffice it to say, we've become like family. We've realized we share this common addiction, and have agreed to dedicate one day a week as "no tech" day. This means something different to each of us and that's ok, but we're there to encourage one another in this.
  3. One of my friends on twitter came up with a suggestion of taking tech vacations for your own personal health. Granted, staring at a computer screen all day is hard on the eyes and tends to make my back and shoulders tense.
  4. I'm beginning to develop unhealthy relationship patterns. This has been growing for a LONG time, but I find myself being more and more agoraphobic and just wanting to hide at home relying on my computer to be my main social outlet.
  5. The more time I'm online, the more I feel the NEED to be. Taking just one day to be offline, I find means that I don't feel as strongly drawn to be online all day the rest of the week either. It's sort of like I've given myself permission to be unavailable once in a while, and I realize I'm regaining control of my time.
I realize I have an unhealthy addiction and it's time to face it. Cold Turkey is not an option for me, because a lot of the reasons I became reliant on the internet are still valid. I still need that outlet and the internet is honestly the most practical place to have it as it requires no need to find a sitter just to "get out" and socialize. There are a lot of benefits to staying connected online. I just intend not to let the internet rule my life as I confess I have in the past. I can do one day a week, and work from there.

Even Jesus understood the practice of "drawing away from the world" was necessary.



It's like holding on to that old junkyard cab
with the rust covered hubs
and ripped up mats
and cracker crumbs left from the nineties

It's time to let go of the things from the past
regardless of the coins in the seats
What are they worth when it comes down to it?
Small pieces of copper, green and sticky with age ~
if they're no longer useful to you
why would you pocket them afraid to let go?

Time to dig in that closet
evict all the dust bunnies
throw out the clothes you've outgrown
that beat-up old hat with visor that's ripped
that no one will ever wear

Go find something new
something more relevant and valid
something that's fitted and tailored to you
because the truth lies buried
under all that junk that's been shoved away
stuffed there simply because
it doesn't belong anywhere else

And as you grow and change
you'll do this again,
many times over and over
because to stay is to stagnate
just like the mold growing on worthless coins


Outside My Window

I’ve waited too long
so when I look out now,
I see only silence in black
with only the faintest glimmer
of soft moonlight hidden
behind faraway, stubborn clouds.

It’s almost like nothing,
this empty expanse
full of distant echoes
and disappearing shadows

Why is it so dark
outside my window
when everything in here is so clear?

If I turn out the light
and get lost in the night
will I find rest
in the falling of stars?


when all I want is to
distinguish one sound
but all around me is noise
how can I focus
as the chaos erupts
and I can’t choose one
from the overbearing scatter
of this endless chatter

when all I want is to
hear the sound
of nothing
only my beating heart
and your breath inside

when all I want is to
be with you


One Lovely Blog Award

Vicky Burkholder, writer of fantasy and paranormal romance, awarded me the "One Lovely Blog Award," and I would like to thank her (and the academy and... oh... wait, wrong award). I am honored to be a part of this apparently long running tradition.

In following with the tradition of One Lovely Blog, I hereby pass this award along to Susan:an artist of words, an explorer of beauty, and a friend of the heart and soul. This award is for her personal blog as well as for her writing blog: Typescript ~ which exists to encourage and assist writers by providing writing prompts, book giveaways, and the occasional first person author's anecdote. Her words and her friendship have been invaluable to me. Thanks, Susan!

For the second part of the award, I'm supposed to tell you ten things about myself you might not know, so here goes:
  1. I play the flute, but haven't done so in public for years (aside from a brief moment of insanity in the past year where I actually brought it out to play during a rehearsal for the worship band that I sing with).
  2. I design jewelry, both in real life and in Second Life. I haven't sold much (in either place), but I enjoy the creative challenge of both.
  3. For my birthday, freshman year in college, my brother bought me the super~mega~deluxe box of Crayola crayons and some coloring books. It's what I asked for. I still love to color and it's one of my favorite past-times. I am a Crayola snob and don't like to use any other crayons.
  4. I've never really learned to roller skate or swim. I can survive at either, but it's just not pretty.
  5. My children are the only grandkids on both sides of the family, which makes for interesting holidays and birthdays.
  6. My first job was, "Would you like to supersize your value meal?"
  7. I have been outside the country three times, but never to a non-English speaking country. I could however, get by in most countries that speak romance languages.
  8. When my husband first suggested we watch Buffy the Vampire Slayer, I thought he had lost his marbles. I have now seen nearly every episode at least a half dozen times, and quote it frequently.
  9. I know the difference between American Sign Language and Signed English, and have been nearly fluent in both at one time or another.
  10. I have friends in every continent of the world except Antarctica, but I sure do love penguins!


Still and Again

"It's falling apart from heavy use;
it's not what it was when you got it.
Are you sure you still want it,
and you don't want a trade-in?
Or even an upgrade
to a classier model?
I completely understand
if you don't want it now;
it's only a shadow of what you agreed to."

"I meant what I said:
that I'd keep it forever.
The marks give it character
and proof that it's loved.
Nothing could ever replace it.
It's still all I need
and nothing will change that,



Reaching for my flute-case
amid the poly-cotton blends
brought back lazy summer melodies
where memories couldn’t end

Like the bright magenta lacquer
displayed with love on tiny fingers
far too small to really grasp
all this chaos while it lingered

As you laughed at me, hysterical,
while I used words without command ~
some that earned me silly nicknames
and some I still don’t understand

You know I noted your attendance
in the roster for my day
just as I'd noted, then, your absence
As he carried me away

I won’t be home this Saturday
But then… you haven’t been for years


The line is always there.

We all know it;
we all see it.

motivational speakers ~
they all praise it

It's the symbol of hope
and new beginnings,
a new day dawning,
a future that waits,
or a journey that beckons.

But the line always moves
and lies just out of reach as
the further we travel
the farther it seems


After Midnight

She lies awake,
embracing her cold
forgotten child.

Waiting for it to stop
this discomfort
this pain
this miserable
crying hunger.

If she could just
feed it
change it
sing it to sleep,
she knows she could
fall back to sleep herself.

But the child's not consoled
not by her mere words
or just wishing
for silence
and rest

And pacing the floor
is the only way
to silence
the babbling voice.

For this inner child
needs her attention
before it completely dies.


The Maid

Amid unmade sheets
and dampened towels
revealed the morning after
the empty cups
stained brownish grey
remember something darker

She picks them up
and holds them close
tracing marks their lips had made
remembering again
the warmth of love
and smiling for the two

She steals one last glance
to keep this moment
before packing up these things
then collects the mess
and wipes the counters
and clears their memories out for more

Prompt: You are in a motel room.
(A Writer's Book of Days)


The Beating of the Heart

It's what I do when the world is asleep
when the moon casts shadows of azure deep
It's what I do when midnight falls
when memories come haunting with siren calls
It's what I do when shooting stars cross
when dreamers are murmuring of other lives lost
It's what I do when the sandman stalks
when the reasons for waking are reduced to mere talk
It's what I do when night's swallowed day
when there's room just to listen without disarray

Prompt: It's what I do in the middle of the night.
(A Writer's Book of Days)


Take Me Away

It's a magical mystery
of bubbly bliss
of steamy silence
melting the mania

It's an easy escape
from needless nuisance
from fearful fatality
erasing the elements

Is a drowsy delight
in washing out worries
in cleansing out chaos
drowning the depression


Prompt: Write about bathing.
(from "A Writer's Book of Days")



The moon wasn't made
to thrive in the day.
She's reflected there,
but is always overshadowed
by the blazing, awful glare
of the overwhelming sun
who drives her into night
thinking that she's hidden
but the darkness is her world
and she shines among the diamonds.


Prompt: Write about a day moon. (from A Writer's Book of Days)



Today marks a year
since the day I died
well... the piece of me that cares

I always thought I knew
where I was headed
and who I was
saved by grace
and all that jazz

but now I've walked through hell

I've stopped believing
in the afterlife
if this is what it means

I'll accept this quest
of eternal search
to find pieces of my soul
and reconnect the parts of me
to try to be alive


Prompt: "A year after your death, ..." (after Czeslaw Milosz) from A Writer's Book of Days



I'm tired of only talking
when the future doesn't wait
for you and I to decide it's time
to take the world head-on

We all agree that famine's awful
and that starving people die
but it doesn't feed one single child
as we place our reservations
since no one wants to wait

Innocence trolls the darkest night
and never truly sleeps
simply because we feel disgusted
by the fact that men can play with her
all night for just a quarter

Homeless children bathe in mud
and dress in cast-off rags
because we have to buy new shoes
to match our manicures

Disease goes on a killing spree
leaving widows and orphans behind
all because we can't stop fighting
over who deserves insurance
or which doctor we prefer

The door is open where you stand
and the world awaits your entrance
will you offer what you can
or pretend to cry and run?


Prompt: You're standing in a doorway. (from A Writer's Book of Days)


"So... was today any better than yesterday?"

"You know where I was today, right?"


"I took Gramma to the doctor."


"It's not good, is it?"



Prompt: Write about a time someone said no. (from A Writer's Book of Days)