Monday, April 2, 2012

The Scintilla Project: Day Nine

The excuse: I have been, uh...shall we say, feeling not so scintillating--us writerly folk get that way from time to time, and time and again. Anyway a week late, but still awesome and without further ado. 
The prompt: Write a list of 23. (23 things to do, 23 people you owe apologies to, 23 books you've lied about reading, 23 things you can see from where you're sitting, 23 ten-word hooks for stories you want to tell....)

Twenty three terrific things about right now, before the feeling subsides

1. Colombian coffee
2. Gardening
3. 5 sleeping cats, yes five of 'em.
4. 2 great young people
5. A hot shower 
6. Patchouli body oil
8. Conversation
9. Hearty laughter
10. Fresh laundry
11. Biochemistry (Some day I'll be done, so let's count it now.)
12. Too many cookies
13. A new dress
14. Michael Cotto
15. A long walk
16. A soft wind
17. A rabbit!
18. Bad television
19. Diet Coke
20. My younger sister
21. Party planning
22. More coffee
23. Yoga 

Friday, March 23, 2012

The Scintilla Project: Day Eight

The prompt: What are your simplest pleasures? Go beyond description and into showing the experience of each indulgence.

Long ones, short ones, cliche and obscure
Modern, archaic, proper and all slang-like
I love them all
If I had my druthers, I'd piddle about with them all day; 
I'd pick 'em, spit 'em, drop 'em
I'd twist 'em, mince 'em, chop it up
I'd sing 'em, most loud, sweet cacophony
Oh, but occasionally
I eat 'em
I quote 'em, I give 'em, I take 'em
I live and breathe 'em 
I fear them 
"They can and will be used against you"...
They'll break you, maim you, cut you down to size;
A detail, minutiae, to an infinitesimal speck of who you thought you once were
They'll expose and exploit you
Pulchritude, power, horror, ugliness and shame
They are love and loathing, hope and despair
They incite riots and laughter and insight and change
They escape you, they fail you, but they come back...
Awestruck by love, writhing in pain, at desire's peak, on the brink of death
A final utterance, one last plea
For naught but their own posterity

The Scintilla Project: Day Six

The prompt: Write the letter to the bully, to the cheater, to the aggressor that you always wanted to but couldn't quite. Now tell them why they can't affect you anymore.

I wish I was there. I wish I was ready. I wish I could narrow it down to the one thing, the one time that hurt the most. I wish I knew that any of it actually mattered; that my pain was not in vain. I wish you'd come to me someday having discovered empathy, ready to offer an apology. I wish that apology might somehow validate me and set me free.

I'm gonna put this out there Universe, and if I may, just one more wish. Will you aid me in the strength and clarity to revisit this prompt at some point when I'm there, when I'm ready, when it doesn't affect me anymore. 

The Scintilla Project: Day Seven

The prompt: Talk about a time when you saw your mother or father as a person independent of his or her identity as your parent.

Talk of the units always presents with a bit...OK a boatload, of trepidation. As the once-- but no longer-- only child of addicts, I've struggled through the years to let my siblings have their own reality, their own experiences and mostly their own voice, often stifling mine in the process, but that ended when my writing began.

I'll tell you that much of my life I've seen my mother as anything but a mother. For the entirety of my childhood, I was the parent, hers and mine, and later my siblings and lastly--still amidst my childhood, my own children.

She is the subject of many unpublished essays, therapy sessions and my own looming fears. She's just so flawed, so human, so independent of her identity as anything or anyone, and subsequently independent of obligations to anything or anyone. I find her equally as shameful as she is enviable.

I could go on forever about the times she disappointed me, "dropped the ball", but what I fear I'll never understand is why I always rush to pick it up, again and again, until I'm juggling-- mother, daughter, sister, teacher, friend, therapist, perpetual fixer-upper to the clan. I've spent my life navigating and surviving her independence. What I'd like is to someday bear witness to the declaration of my own independence; a life independent of codependency.   

Thursday, March 22, 2012

The Scintilla Project: Day Five

The prompt: Show a part of your nature that you feel you've lost. Can you get it back? Would it be worth it?

Aah... if I knew then what I know now. I've heard it, I've said it, I've willed it, wished it, vied it over and over and over, again and again and again. And, now I know. I know now, that which had I known then would place me exactly where I am now--only sooner, and for longer; wishing, vying, over and over and over, again and again and again that I didn't know-- not then, not now, not ever, what it is that I know now.

Two subtle divots, at the upturned corners of my lips ago, alongside a certain soft and supple something in the light of my eyes; regrettably, I never took note of them until the day they went away, the day I learned what I'd wished I'd known, but now know, and wish I didn't.

It was a time when forever meant for ever, when there was but one version of the truth, when love was more than enough and that meant by default, I--in love, and being loved--was more than enough too. It was a time of innocence, of ignorance, of bliss, it may very well have been the best of times. But, I wanted to know, to know better, and so now I do, only I wish I didn't. Aah... if I knew then what I know now.

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