National Poetry Writing Month: Week Four

And so it draws to a close.

It has been years since I wrote consistently every day. When I was young, I wrote every day because I loved it, but as I grew up, quality seemed to be more important to me than fueling my passion regularly. I became a victim to the belief that you must “wait for your muse to come”.

I might as well have waited for my Prince Charming/Knight in Shining Armour to show up while I was at it.

I’d say for sure that this month taught me that it isn’t about always churning out good stuff, because the reality is, you will make crappy poetry. No matter what. But it’s better to exercise that writing muscle and then look to find the great lines. The fabulous lines. Find the lines that really strike out. And then those lines, you can use elsewhere. Or not at all. It’s all up to you.

In any event, I will definitely try to write everyday now, whether it’s a poem, to-do list, story, or otherwise.

Without further ado, here are the poems for Week Four:

 

04/23/2017

A new horizon, I look beyond the veil.

04/24/2017

I will finally a part of this new world,

and then suddenly,

it’s like slipping on glass

& swallowing razor blades.

04/25/2017

Into the darkness.

I am swallowed down.

Cool at the surface.

Hollow within.

04/26/2017

Dancing around you,

tip-toe-ing over daisies.

We stand so close

I can barely breathe.

Am I a part of you?

Can I let you in?

04/27/2017

….Coca Cola like it was nothing…

04/28/2017

…doubt,

like black ink,

spreads through my veins,

consuming me whole….

04/29/2017

Lace,

and an old pair of dirty boots

Dirty in the air,

crystals in my lungs.

04/30/2017

I miss the smell of you

in my lungs…

 

Stay safe and insane, my dears ❤

National Poetry Writing Month: Week Three

A sleeping Brenna and her Rosey

I’d have to say that this has been one of the most difficult weeks I have had in a long time. Not only have I been grieving, which is like trekking through an unknown jungle – you don’t know what it’ll do to you – but I was also going through an interview process for a new job doing custom alterations. About two hours after Rosey passed on, I got the phone call asking me to come in. Since then, I have accepted the position and had my first shift yesterday.

In a way, I feel as though Rosey passed on in order for me to really start becoming the person I need to be, and who I always wanted to be. I miss her so much and love her with all my heart, which is quite evident through all of these poems and excerpts, but I am excited and intrigued to see what the world has in store for me now.

“When a chapter ends, a new one begins.”

Here are my poems and excerpts from Week Three:

 

04/16/2017

A sniffle. And a cough.

My tiny little friend, I worry about you often,

but especially now, as you sputter little garden hose & hack up slime.

Poor baboo. Get well soon.

04/17/2017

Cannot write tonight, because without you, I am nothing.

04/18/2017

….and there you were.

Meowing.

Purring.

Kissing me.

Rubbing on me.

Gods, it felt so real

….

Today was a lot of firsts,

and never-agains.

But I know now that you will always be here.

Goodnight.

I love you ❤

04/19/2017

Day one,

day two,

day three.

Counting the days I survive

without you.

Hoping one day

I don’t need

to count the days away.

04/20/2017

…Thank you for visiting me in the night. Please don’t stop.

04/21/2017

So much laughter. So much new.

“When one chapter ends, another begins.”

I know you are with me always.

I love you. ❤

04/22/2017

A Dust in the darkness,

a walk alone.

Through the sands,

toes covered in sand,

walking.

White dress dancing

in twilight,

dancing.

Silence.

And a calm.

She awaits.

I awaken.

 

Thanks for stopping by and having a read. Lots of love.

Stay safe and stay insane.

National Poetry Writing Month: Week Two

I wish I could start this whole thing off on a light note. But unfortunately, my cat, my little girl, Rosey Posey Prather, died this morning. It was quite sudden.

She lived a good long life. She would have been 17 this coming August.

She was my birthday present in the first grade. When I opened this big box, I found that it was filled with cat toys and food dishes. I was so thrilled. My birthday is during the week of Christmas, so we waited until the first week of January to go to our local humane society to pick a cat out. January 7th, to be exact. I knew I wanted a black cat and it had to be a girl. I walked in and looked around at all the cats – and there she was.

A little tuxedo cat, about 6 months old. She was the only girl in the whole room, and her sister had been adopted the day before. She reached out to me, and my life was never the same. We were two peas in a pod. It might sound silly to some people, but she was my first best friend (after my mom, of course).

She is….was my whole world. I gave her all the love I could give her and more. She was my everything. Gods, I miss her so much already.

In honor of her,I thought I would share the entire poem I wrote about her on the first day of this month.

I know I am home

when I hear your sudden scramble

to the door & tight “meow” as

I enter.

I feel safe

when I hear your stretching moan

underneath the bed at 2am.

I find it cute

when you look at me

begging for treats,

even though I just gave you 6.

It makes me laugh

when you get so picky about

your water.

“The fresher the better”.

But my favorite thing about you

is how intuitive you are,

especially after a long day –

you gracefully next to me,

a wave of purrs rush over me,

How your fur can be shiny & silky

still amazes,

my little Tuxedo cat.

Your sweetness reminds

me that I am not alone,

as you look @ me,

only me,

as if I am the world.

16 years have passed since

our fated meeting.

I know our love is

a ticking clock.

But my hope is that our love

will surpass us,

the world,

the galaxy,

and maybe even the cosmos.

Love you always,

my precious Rosey. ❤

 

 

Here’s the snippets from Week Two of National Poetry Month –

 

04/09/2017

Lips stained insolence,

Spilling out ignorance.

I try to wash you away.

But I guess ordinary water will not do.

04/10/2017

Imaginary conversations sipped at 2am,

wondering when our eyes will shut

…..

Let us remain in conversations until the lights go up.

04/11/2017

It’s almost as though we are fire.

04/12/2017

….I shouldn’t be wishing my skin would dissolve in the pit of my own stomach acid.

04/13/2017

…Jumpin’ out of this sweatsuit,

into a space suit,

as I shoot off acute.

04/14/2017

Are we brunch on a Tuesday at noon? Are we picnics placed delicately by a clear blue lake?

04/15/2017

Heart over mouth.

Eyes go blind,

thinking of all of the stars

in your galaxies…

 

Give your loved ones a hug today. Value them. Love them. Stay safe and stay insane.

Thank you for all of the wonderful years we shared, Rosey.

Love you always.

National Poetry Writing Month: Week One

When I first started writing poetry, way back in middle school, I would write every single day. In fact, I made a goal – write 5 poems every single day. I would just sit during my lunch period, or study hall if I had done all of my homework, and just write poetry. I believe I originally started doing that because I really loved writing poetry and wanted to improve my work. But then, the 8th grade hit and I grew a huge crush on this boy who rode my bus. And every day, on the bus ride home, I would show him my poems, hoping that they’d make him fall for me.

Spoiler alert: Didn’t work. At all. Actually, it freaked him out. Damn Rom Coms lied to us all of these years! Although it probably didn’t help that I also kept randomly calling his phone just to listen to his voicemail. (I was 13, okay?! I know now that that’s insane and I am so embarrassed. Sorry, dude.)

Nowadays, I usually just write a poem down in my journal as it comes into my mind. Could be every couple days, or every couple weeks. But this month, in honor of National Poetry Writing Month, I decided that I am going to write at least one poem every single day. And thus far, I have been succeeding. So here’s my favorite snippets/quotes from every day of week one.

 

04/01

I know I am home when I hear your sudden scramble to the door and tight greeting as I enter….

04/02

Khaki Pants. Matching hat. Long Face. 65+ easy.

What a non-threatening description for a human being.

If only his bark matched his fur.

Here’s hoping it won’t match his bite.

04/03

…An adrenaline rush, knowing my happiness destroyed his own. I was alive. I was free. But like any high, I imagine, it had to come to an end. And this high, it fell down slowly, and struck mad hard. But I will always look fondly, that year, that smell. I was free. I. Was. Alive.

04/04

….Two smiles meet, and then time – it becomes still….

04/05

Arm around you, with an S curl.

I am reminded that I am not alone in this world.

04/06

Falling.

Falling down

               endless

                        spirals,

         I am lost.

Uncertainty.

        Uncertainty is wondering if I will brush

                                       these waves

                                                        aside…..

04/07

It’s funny how you know what you want,

                          the moment another swallows

                                                                      you

               whole.

04/08

….Glass-eyed, a porcelain doll waits….

 

Hope you all enjoyed that! It’s been so interesting to see what ideas I come up with everyday, whether they are perfect, small, or nowhere in between. If you are participating in #napowrimo as well, let me know below!

Be sure to check out my latest post about teaching a theatre design and storytelling workshop to youth students, linked here.

Stay safe, and stay crazy out there, my dears.

 

Just a Little Taste: ‘Theatre Design Meets Storytelling’

Collage , made by Just Buffalo Writing Center Students

This past January, I was given the wonderful opportunity to teach a workshop called ‘Theatre Design Meets Storytelling’, which discussed how theatre design aids in telling a story . This has been something have wanted to do since I graduated from University at Buffalo in 2015. I am so grateful to Just Buffalo Writing Center for giving me this opportunity!

I just wrote a piece about it on my design website, and I would love for you to check it out (here)! Let me give you a little taste:

When I was doing my undergrad at University at Buffalo, I heard many colleagues in my program refer to their job as being a “storyteller”. It makes perfect sense. The stage, in my mind, is an entire novel, and each person’s job in that space is a piece to the story line. The director and playwright work together as writer and editor, the actors are the characters, and the designers create the descriptive imagery. Everyone aids the story through collaboration, which makes it such a beautiful, fascinating experience, especially for me as a writer.

Please take a look, and let me know you thoughts! I also wrote about this workshop on Just Buffalo Writing Center’s blog, which you can check it out here!

Recovery; Commitment.

Your recovery is a commitment. It is something that you must commit to, wholeheartedly, every day, for the rest of your life – regardless of whether your world came crashing down, or the land is filled with daisies, unicorns, and sunshine. Otherwise, you accept death immediately. You are choosing life or death. That is your commitment.

It is important, however, to remember that sometimes, much like other parts of your life, you fail. You fall down. You scrap your knee. You lose yourself to the pain.

And you know what? That’s okay. That’s okay, so long as you get right back up, wipe aside your tears, slap a bandage on that knee, and keep trudging along to a better moment, a better day.

 

Recently, I had a stumble in my own recovery. A hiccup. I was constantly stressed and anxious due certain pieces of work in my life. I was eating nothing but junk. My mood shifts were drastic. And on two separate occasions, I almost relapsed.

I have since brought myself back up, but for anyone out there who is struggling with recovery, I just wanted you to know that it’s okay. It’s okay to not be alright all the time. It’s okay if you fall into a dark place sometimes.

Because here’s the thing – mental illness is not like a cold. You cannot take some medicine to make it go away. You cannot sleep it off. It is there, and it is always there. It is a part of your soul and who you are, and you must work with it if you are ever going to be happy. Whether you do therapy, take medication, go to support groups, or do something else that eases your personal ailment (exercise, hobbies, journaling, etc.), you are working on being a happier you, and that’s what is important.

 

Remember to never be afraid to ask your support system for help. Be sure to know who that is. It is not for the faint of heart. In this stumble, I have seen the people who will withstand the tests of time with me, and those who I will definitely not be writing home about. And that’s okay.

Does it suck knowing that certain people will never understand you? Yes. Is it better to know now rather than later which of the people in your life will love and appreciate you, no matter what? Oh yeah! And don’t worry, people who can’t handle it, we don’t hate you. It’s a hard job to support someone who suffers from mental illness. Better to be honest than to cause unintentional heartache.

 

Never settle for people who don’t love you for who you are, and don’t try to save people that you can’t.

 

And most importantly, never ever forget to love yourself. You are you, and that is special and beautiful.

#DAAM15: After Thoughts on ‘I Am Mosaic. Hear Me Roar.’

As some of you may or may not know, this month is Domestic Abuse Awareness Month! As the month draws to a close, I want to get as many people talking about this subject as I can, because it is a topic often ignored even though it is a rather common place situation happening all over the world.

Now, many of you who have been following my blog since the beginning know about my experience with domestic abuse, it having been the central topic in my memoir piece ‘I am Mosaic. Hear Me Roar’, which I posted some excerpts from a few months back. Although Mama’s boyfriend never hit me with his fist, feet, or any objects, his constant need to manipulate me with his words every single day for 10-15 years shows quite a deal of abuse in the home. Writing ‘I am Mosaic. Hear Me Roar’ helped me achieve closure, and to finally love myself all over, from my cellulite to my emotional baggage. I am proud of who I am, and can now live life with little fear, as writing this memoir has also assisted in me battling my depression and settling down my anxiety disorders.

Now, not everyone is as lucky as me. Many people out there are still suffering in relationships centered on abuse and can’t seem to find a way out, and there are others who have unfortunately not made it out alive.

There is a chance that one of those people still alive, still fighting for a way out, is reading this right now, so there is a chance that I could help someone’s life change for the better.

I want to first off say – Your story is legitimate. No matter what. You are beautiful, strong, and you deserve real love.

Second off – If you are still questioning if this is a abuse, here is a list of types of abuse through Love is Respect. PLEASE be careful. If your abuser sees you looking at this, or finds it in your history, it could prove to be fatal to you.

And third – As you have accepted the abuse you are suffering from is not deserved and you want help, here is a list of helpful phone numbers and links from The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.

And remember, you can find love and support with your fellow survivors, if nowhere else. We are a group of strong, gorgeous fighters, and we take care of our own here.

Hope you find love and safety soon, your gorgeous fighter, you.