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Art Poetry Writing

Poetry on my mind

As mentioned a couple of posts ago, I haven’t written much poetry lately, but I have now penned one poem and one piece of poetical prose, so I’m feeling better about that. I feel I need a long week-end or even a week’s masterclass in poetry to get me back into the groove.

I have, however, been collating my work of the past 10 years or so. There are, in fact, quite a few so I am going to publish them. Why not, right?

My big problem is that there is no theme to them, or enough of them in one theme to create a book subject. There are my usual nature poems, along side darker themes, and some political comment and protest. Many of them make reference to the moon or Luna, as I like to call her. Looking at them I thought; There are some light ones, some very dark ones, some light with a little dark, some dark with a little light of hope.

Therefore, I decided on ‘Light & Dark’ as a working title. What do you think? or maybe just, ‘Phases’.

For the cover, my friend and artist, Lynn Scott-Cummins, who works out of Umbrella Studios Townsville, is kindly going to allow me to use one of her art prints from her mosr recent exhibition, ‘Moon Phase: Chasing Trancendence.’ I am very excited and thankful, Lynn.

I’d show you the cover, but I haven’t done it yet.

What’s that? You’d like a sample…Oh, all right if you insist…

CREATING MAGIC
 
My wand dabbles in a puddle
soaks up the magic
cuts a swathe through 
sky space
liquid colour seeps 
into damp blankness
fades to nothing at the horizon
a ceiling emerges 
in the aether
not the endless high I long for
my brush is too clumsy to 
capture atmospheric freedom
so my soul can enter the picture
where hidden worlds orbit 
beyond sight
still present. 
Caught in the ecstasy
of creation
the Golden Rule
divide and conquer
texture heft contrast
dip and splash
in primordial soup
a sweeping stroke
defining shadow
a burst of light
cloud mountain tree
appear by sleight of hand
a charlatan's trick
unworthy Maestro.
I falter vision dimmed
finished, emptied.
expression misses perfection
tossed aside it joins others
spinning in the void.

I stare into my palette
pick up my wand…                

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My Get Up and Go…

My get up and go got up and went….ie I’m not feeling motivated at all to do anything much, though I’m doing ok in the complaining department. Yes, I’m good at complaining so prepare yourself.

As you may know I live in northern Queensland and we have just had an almighty downpour (approx 2500 mm in my part of the world). Two unfortunate young men lost their lives. My thoughts and prayers to their loved ones. One person died from Melioidosis or Whitmore’s Disease (from contaminated flood water read about it here) and 10 others have been hospitalised. Hundreds of houses were inundated and people lost all their possessions.

I, however, was not directly affected by any of the above. The worst I got was a mouldy house interior, because I was at my daughter’s and the house was closed up for the week of non stop rain. Thank god for insurance. I am presently without some furniture and furnishings which the cleaners deemed a health risk. I am so grateful that me and mine escaped so lightly, however I have survivor’s remorse.

I feel so much for those families and communities affected and not just in the suburbs out west it is a mess with hundreds and hundreds of cattle killed and starving. It truly breaks my heart so though I can have no idea of what is happening in those farms and stations, my thoughts are with you. If you are one of the unfortunate I know it does no good to say it but I am so sorry this happened to you. Be as strong as you can be but weep when you need to.

Following the floods we now have a horrendous heatwave. Normally, I can tolerate the hot humid weather that comes with living in the tropics but it’s sooooo hot, I believe I was panting like a dog yesterday. It’s only 10am and it’s 35.1 Celsius. I was going to do some gardening but to hell with that! It is so big and and tall, so overgrown and junglely that I am unable to contemplate it. Besides, I need new non-mouldy gumboots and gloves and Ive been waiting for the building inspector (who’s just this minute left) to come and tell me what I already know — part of my ceiling will be pulled out and replaced and a couple of room ceilings will be repainted. I am glad to have the work done, but again worry about those in dire need and hope my piddling problems haven’t held up any help that they need.

None of the above has anything to do with art or writing. However, I think I feel a bit better for venting. Thank you for your time. I hope your life is treating you well and promise next time I will be a little more interesting.   Ciao   Rosa

Oh, just for fun because its too hot to bother doing anything very active I went to this site You Write Like   to see what they came up with. I put in a few paras from Ruth In Pieces (my crime novel) and apparently that shows I write like Dan Brown…I doubt that. So of course I had to try other pieces of my other writing and alack alas it’s as I feared I obviously have no distinct voice. Here are the results for several different genres.

  • Ruth In Pieces — Crime — Dan Brown
  • Jenny’s Story — Crime — Cory Doctorow
  • Clancy leaves Home — Children’s story — J.K. Rowling (I’ll take that)
  • Sinbad’s Voyage to Da Nan Di — Historical Faction — James Joyce (I’ll defs take that)
  • The Fifth Era — Sci-fi/Fantasy — Anne Rice (Ditto)
  • Uh Oh, It’s Nana Rose — Children’s story — Stephen King (that made me laugh)
  • Australian Morning Song — A Poem —  James Joyce (alllllrighty then)

Bit of a hoot. Give it a go. Now I have to go.      Ciao for now   Rosa

 

 

 

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Poetry Uncategorized Writing

Why do I bother writing poetry?

Short answer — I don’t really know.

Not only do I write poems, I put them out there in the big, bad world for others to criticise, ponder and maybe enjoy. I can’t help myself. I see, hear, smell, touch, feel and words gather inside pushing me to put pen to paper.

I’m not a great poet, probably not even a good one. That doesn’t bother me (though I do want to improve my craft) because I just want to communicate with you; let you into my world and understand yours.

Writing poetry condenses feeling, sharpens vision, alerts all senses to a fragment of time, of memory. It sees and hears with wondrous acuity the natural world we so take for granted.

Reading poetry moves you to cry, to smile, to laugh, to see reality from odd angles through the prisms of metaphor and simile. Truth shines out and for a moment your eyes and heart are touched with sunlight, or shadow. Poetry immerses you in the moment and allows you to be present in each phrase. Each word carefully chosen to say the most possible, and impossible.

This morning I read a very good article bout how and why to write poetry on the Poetry Foundation site..How to make a poem BY Cm Burroughs  I read each poem hyperlinked in the article’s body ad tasted someone else’s reality; saw new, different realities. In the poem “Those Winter Sundays” by Robert Hayden I cried for the father’s aloneness in his thankless world, for the caring routine of his thoughtfulness. I cried because this was not my experience.

After reading the article I sat a bit, cried a bit more asking, ‘Why, why, why?’ Then, I moved on; read some more Facebook posts. A photo of an old bottle tree  by Chris Grealy leapt out at me. I had to jot down the resulting flow of words or feel all the poorer for its loss. It is a rough, first draft of not something I have experienced but something I felt. That old bottle tree evoked something (an epigenetic memory perhaps). Join me in the tree’s shade and see how it makes you feel.

Bottled Memories

That old bottle tree
has been there since before my birth
Mum says it was old when she was young
its shade providing cool relief
to old bones aching from back-breaking
labour in the sun
her mum provided tea and damper
in a wicker hamper worked by her mum’s
arthritic claws: rip, twist, bend, pull
days and weeks of love’s painful labour.

That old bottle tree
is part of my family’s history
its many tortuous branches have
significance to me deeper than
you know, deeper than words
stories told around a campfire
a missing limb is Uncle Jim
went to war, seen no more
notches on its trunk the
measure of sons of sons
growing as tall as the tales told.

That old bottle tree
though gnarled and arthritic
still stands tall, a symbol
its head is going bald and thin
its shadow may be weaker but
its embrace is stronger, longer
than you can understand. Give
me your hand, touch the trunk
feel that vibration, feel that life
feel that love, laughter, tears, years
That old bottle tree is part of me.

(c) Rosa Christian

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Hello there!

You’ve missed me, I know. And, I’ve been wanting to get back to this blog but find the state of the world affecting the state of my mind. It’s a cruel and unlovely place out there at the moment, therefore it is pretty bleak inside me. I am truly thankful for all the wonderful loving people in my life and know that I must concentrate on enjoying the moment.

I have been wondering how to not sound like I’m constantly on my soapbox and yet still have opinions and observations about the world we live in. So, following on in the same vein as my last post, I’ve decided to let my poetry speak for me. You may hate my poems and despair of my lack of erudite learning and structure, but I hope you will still appreciate the impetus of my words.

This idea makes me nervous. Exposing my poetry to FB criticism is a bit scary even though I’ve self-published a lot of it, I still have no idea if its any good; impostor syndrome in full flight.

In line with the above sentiment I will leave you with this thought, I AM A WRITER THOUGH NOT YET A SELF-SUPPORTING ONE… ciao for now, Rosa.

An autumn leaf falls

I pat my faithful dog

She sees me through a cloud.

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Art Writing

Work, work, work

Well hello there again, lovely to see you!

I now have Tuesdays and Thursdays off, so I have time to get my own stuff done. I have been very lazy and not done much in the garden so am trying to get that mess sorted ready for planting season. It gets so very overgrown so quickly but still manages to be a place of recuperation and relaxation. If you are on my FB list you will have seen my spider lilies are looking a bit good, if not that is them in the header picture.

I have also been able to get a lot of editing, collating and a little writing done. I have my book of short stories just about ready to roll just going to give it to  a beta reader and try to reload photos elements on my new (to me) computer so I can make the covers one for ebook and another for print. They’re really the same but one is a full cover.

Now that I’ve made the changes suggested by my formal assessment, I’ve got Sinbad’s tale with an indigenous reader for comment (well, part 2 anyway), and Part 1 with a beta reader. Should get that back soon.

I collated my poetry into book form, tentatively – Creating Light and Dark. Because some of them are, of necessity, a bit dark…alright a couple are very dark but that’s how I roll. There are a couple of poems that I’ve done more than one iteration of and I can’t decide which to put in so am taking them to Writers’ Group tonight and see what they think. I am unsure what to put on the cover yet and should I put some pictures in the body to break things up a bit?

Which brings me to another problem, Smashwords has decided that the covers I presently have for the books up there are not suitable and I have to change them up to higher pixels. (Alright, that was couple of years ago and I still haven’t done anything about it. I blame photoshop, my broken old computer and being too busy in other spheres.) Anywho, I still need to change them and wish fervently I had Photoshop CS 3 or 4 to work with…sigh.

I have given an improved version of RIP to a beta reader and will give Fifth Era to someone tonight. Jenny’s story is re-edited and waiting. I’ve written a couple of short stories and a children’s story for comps.

On the art front I’ve done very little, but I have finished and had framed the portrait of my friend ready for the Percival Tucker Prize. It’s due in before Monday. I had to write an Artist’s CV and Artist’s Statement for that. That was easy, since I’m basically self-taught, it was very short.

Well there you are, you are up to date with my news. It is a bit weird to rabbit on about myself like that but I guess that’s what blogging is about. It helps me see more clearly that I have achieved something. How about yours? What are you doing or planning or both? Talk to me, I need your encouragement and am happy to give you mine.

Ciao for now, Rosa

 

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Art Uncategorized Writing

Updating

I have decided it is time to update my site here at WordPress. I have no idea really how to go about this so will be winging it. I need something fresh and eye-catching. I also need to tidy up my gallery and other pages so it it is better presented and effective. I have asked myself if I ought to have a number of different blog site for my various interests, but I can barely keep up with one so that won’t work at all, as you well know if you know me or have read any of my previous blogs.

I need my Art Gallery with its different genre pages, then there is my poetry, my short stories, my plays, my fantasy-type novels and let’s not forget my alter-ego’s (Percy Rose) murder writing. Oh, and I nearly forgot, I have sort of stated a memoir i.e. I’ve written a number of shorts of largely disparate vignettes of my life. I have no idea how that book will eventually look or be put together.

Where do I start fixing my blog? Do I have to close down the site to effect the changes? Should I get a completely new address? You can step in and help me out here anytime, thanks.

I know how I will be spending this lovely, cloudy Sunday…probably tearing my hair out. Deep breaths and in I plunge…Ciao for now Rosa.

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Uncategorized Writing

Filmmaking and Poetry

Well, WHAT A DAY! I started out by giving my very helpful opinion re the colours my friend and her man should choose for their new home…they did ask…bwaaa.ha.ha.ha…

Then went to see a couple of display homes. Had lunch by the river. Then…

I watched as my remarkable friend participated in the making of a film. 5 Rockhampton playwrights submitted plays and a chap called Ian turned them into screenplay and is making the final product into a feature film which will be entered into the various film festivals around the world. Not only is Stella acting in the film but 2 of her plays format part of the story. See, told you she is amazing. Oh, the movie is called Lost and Found. They’ve almost finished filming and now must cut and edit. Out on the big screen in 2017. How exciting!!

And, tonight I went to an amateur entertainers open mike night at this amazing venue in the city centre. It’s this huge warehouse turned into a bar seating tables etc and stage. In the forecourt they have a bunch of pop up restaurants – oven fired pizza, Indian, chinese …i had an indian mushroom curry with the extra hot chilli sauce…man that was good.

I also read 3 of my poems to a very polite audience…ie  they didnt throw anyhing at me. It’s been a while since I was in front of an audience…pretty nervous!! It seemed to go OK.

All in all a satisfying day…

Oh and to top things off…I  very bravely booked accommodation in Gympie through Airbnb. I’ll let you know how that goes when I get there on Monday. For now I must go to bed and get some much needed rest.  Ciao for now  Rosa.

i

 

Categories
Writing

A New Poem

Well, hello there! I’ve not been into my blog for a long while…reasons… but as I sat on my back veranda yesterday I penned this and thought I’d share it … I tried to fix the double line spacing but…

Away with the Birds

The spring sunshine closes my eyes

But instead of closing me off it opens me

And I spread, like the branches of the nearby

Stringybark, out into the aether. I become

Part of the world around me.

Not an observer but a participant.

 

I sit with the red-wing in the feeder

Having ousted those pacifist doves

Joined by his brothers and lovers

He keeps his troops in line while

Keeping a feathered eye out for harriers.

 

I hear the screech of an incoming

Tribe of lorikeets. They are bullies

Disguised in a refinery of rainbows

Which all the world finds so attractive

Which makes their bad behaviour acceptable

 

Despite the angry warning of his epaulettes

Red-wing decides discretion is better than valour,

Or maybe because his wife harangues him,

He flies to the camouflage of the bougainvillea

Hurling abuse over his shoulder, unheeded.

 

I remain unnoticed, or perhaps tolerated

As the garrulous lorries take their fill

Of my earlier worshipful offering to the

Bird-brains of my life.

They kick and flick seed as they feed

Not a word of thanks do they utter.

Why should they? They are beautiful.

 

In their wake the sedate and plainer

Less flashy, less sassy, bronzewings glide in

They have no problem sharing with their cousins,

Small grey doves and others, double-barred.

Tiny sunbirds chip chip and slip out of hiding

Fairyfolk flitting from blossom to blossom.

 

An observant kookaburra, lifts and shakes

His azure wings and guffaws at

My attempt to be away with the birds.

I curse him for the accuracy of his mimicry

And slink back to my prison from which

I shall one day be free.

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Uncategorized Writing

Home again, home again jiggerty jig!

So, I’ve been back in the north for 24hrs and it is great to be warm again. I have spent the day at the beach with friends from my work place, so calming, so tiring. Why is that do you suppose?

That is not to say, of course, that I did not enjoy my stay in Canberra. Mostly the weather was sunny if a little cold for me. And, I managed to completely surprise my daughter for her birthday. She cried. Bonus. Lol!

Also, I did a lot of re-drafting of 5th Era (my fantasy novel). I need help from a kindly indigenous Australian and I need to go to the Gympie area to research but apart from that it is coming along nicely…I think.

I am doing a mini internet course in modern poetry with Udemy. I am hoping this will pay dividends and inspire me to to do better. I don’t think my poetry has been terribly good lately. Here’s hoping. As an extra bonus, I managed to write 3 poems while I was away, plus I entered an earlier one into a comp and entered a one-act play into the Noosa comp. Not too shabby an effort, considering I did very little during the winter months. The warm weather vivifies me.

Lucky me, it is a public holiday tomorrow. (Skype me Sonia, if you’re not too exhausted.) In the morning,

I will get out and do some watering and gardening. The grass is brown and tomato plants quite dead but the capsicum and egg-plants have held on and even given me some fruit.

All in all, life is good so now must do some more re-drafting. Cheers for now, Rosa.