I am a Little Meadow Flower

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Bright Pink Flower Against Bright Pink Grasses

I am a little meadow flower
Slightly ragged
Barely noticeable
Sometimes called weed
Lost almost
In a field of many blooms
Adding to the beauty
Of the many
But nothing on my own
I take the soil
Whatever’s given me
And make seed
For the future
For whoever follows
That is all
I am a little meadow flower

September 2016

How Do You Like to Journey?

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Charity Shop Needles - Pink (English) Nines

Life is all about journeys, metaphorical or otherwise.  Sometimes we don’t even realise that we’re on the journey and although some would prefer the comfort and control of a well thought out itinerary, some of the best, some of the most memorable, some of the most meaningful were never planned.  I have to admit that I am one of those who likes to obsessively cover all eventualities, to know where I am headed.

Of course, life doesn’t always turn out that way.

What about you?  How do you like to journey?

I return once more to the metaphor of knitting.  Whether or not you knit, I’m sure you can draw parallels in your own life.

It is said that there are two types of knitter.  The process knitter and the product knitter.  Are knitters one or the other?  Sometimes.  But as with all definitions, us humans rarely conform to the boundaries, to the limits, to the black and white.  We are what we want to be in the moment, or what we need to be.

For me, knitting is very much about the product.  But I say that only as regards the concept of knitting.  Surely knitting is about making something, something likely as not practical and necessary?  I do love the idea of having a finished product, something that I successfully made.  A bit like the whole been there, got the t-shirt thing.  But is that really the point of travel?  To just come out the other side with a souvenir?

Car journeys can be fun.  It’s no fun when you’re stuck on traffic, our local trunk road is particularly notorious, and you have a deadline, an appointment, a clearly prescribed time of arrival laid upon you.  And shouldn’t knitting be fun?  Few of us are knitting for our bread and butter, we’ve taken it up as a hobby, a craft, a pastime.  Aren’t we meant to be enjoying it?

In my knitting, as with I think probably everything else in my life, I do not like having a deadline or even some form of obligation laid upon me.  It stresses me out and completely demotivates me.  (I am a recovering perfectionist).  Whilst I am happy to knit for other people, you’ll have to join the pipeline and accept that it’ll be knitted when it wants to be knitted.

However, I have to shamefacedly admit that I like the buzz of instant gratification.  Hey, I’m human!  And I have a short attention span.  I like the excitement (although this often feels more like trepidation) of casting on new things and I particularly like the thrill of finishing something, especially when it’s something wearable.

So am I a product knitter?

Well, the end product does motivate me.  I like to choose my journeys knowing that I can come out the other side.  And preferably in one piece too.  I want to know where I am going (or at least where I am meant to).

But as much as I like to know my destination, I also enjoy planning and envisioning the journey that I am embarking on.  I do want to know what the highlights are, what to look out for.  I’m interested in side roads, shortcuts, detours and distractions.

So am I a process knitter?

More than likely.

I’m not the kind of person that can churn out projects with regularity and precision.  I get distracted.  I change my mind and want to go elsewhere.  I’m happy to work on something else for a bit, whether like a family game of I-spy to distract and dull the pain or as a leg stretch to give me a breath of fresh air.

(Incidentally, I am under a lifetime ban from the game of I-spy).

So I guess that the kind of knitter that I am is the kind of person that I am.  I like to share my experiences with others, I like to connect with other people.  I don’t want to travel alone, I am a sharer.  It doesn’t matter where we end up or how but I want to be part of other people’s journeys, to help them, to abet them, to enable them.  And most importantly, I want to learn from other people.

Maybe I could be called a social knitter.  Although, I might not be propping bars or the like (one of the associations with the term), my knitting definitely accompanies me.  But it’s more than that.  It helps connect me, one stitch at a time.  And that’s part of the process.  The process of knitting, the process of life.  One stitch at a time.  That’s how I do it.

And that’s something I should bear in mind the next time that I’m stuck in traffic.

The Challenges of Monogamy

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(Before you start questioning my morals or anything, just read the link.  Monogamy is difficult).

Baby, don’t look at me that way | Yarn Harlot.

Why Should I Be Unhappy?

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To bloom is to be happy

But are flowers happy?

Do they feel the sun and smile?

Or when they admire their own petals?

 

To bloom is to be happy

Do I bloom?

And if I don’t, can I still smile?

And if I don’t, can I still be happy?

 

To bloom is to be happy

What does it mean to bloom?

To flourish?  To grow?

To feel the sunshine?

 

To bloom is to be happy

Do we only grow when we are happy?

Or is there growth in sadness?

Or is there strength in pain?

 

Or are we happy because we bloom?

 
 

A sort of poem inspired by this week’s Write on Edge prompt, which included this quote by Rumi:

 

Why should I be unhappy? Every parcel of my being is in full bloom. ― Rumi

 

Mongrel Beast

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I live with Mongrel Beast.  It’s not a choice I had.  (And perhaps that’s why I resent its presence so much).  To think of Mongrel Beast as a dog isn’t really fair to any canid and doesn’t really do justice to what it’s really like living, trying to live, with such a creature.  But perhaps that is the easiest to comparison to help us, both you and me, to get a handle on what this Mongrel Beast of mine is really like.

So, if Mongrel Beast were a dog, it would be one of those smallish curs that you see in some urban places wandering aimlessly about, purposeless and friendless.  It has never been wanted and it has never been loved.  It is welcome nowhere.  Survival is more a matter of chance than  anything else yet it still holds tenaciously to life, even bereft of sight or hearing, ear(s) or limb(s).  It is of dubious parentage and even more dubious manners.

I say ‘small’ but if Mongrel Beast were a dog, it’d actually be quite large, you know, one of those all-consuming masses of hot, heaving, smelly, hairy dogdom that even the most determined dog lover would feel the need to apologise for any time anyone came to the house.  The kind that doesn’t moult but sort of oozes clouds of fluffy hair; the kind that drools lazily but consistently; the kind that feels the need to pump stale, foetid dog breath in your face; the kind that farts, loud and repugnant, as an icebreaker and room-clearer; the kind that drapes itself casually but possessively across any sofa or bed regardless of its own size or filth.

If Mongrel Beast were a dog, it certainly wouldn’t be the discreet kind of dog that you could maybe sneak into your local pub or even better heeled locales.  It wouldn’t be the kind of dog, regardless of the (im)purity of its bloodline, that could tempt or even charm with looks or eyes even the hardest hearted of dog haters.  Mongrel Beast would be the shaggy, ill kempt monstrosity that all the other dogs wouldn’t be seen dead greeting in the park.  Boycotted by all kinds, given a wide and suspicious berth, Mongrel Beast doesn’t really belong anywhere and it certainly isn’t welcome.

If Mongrel Beast were a dog, it wouldn’t be a stray with all the other strays in an area or region where such dogs are to be found.  Oh no, Mongrel Beast haunts respectable neighbourhoods, a lone spectre of decrepit bad taste, lowering the tone, frightening the children, leaving whispered fear, shock and horror in his wake.  The kind that no kind or soft-hearted stranger would ever consider giving a chance.  It would lurk, wild-eyed, just within sight of the swings in the park; apart from community and society but far too close for comfort.

Mongrel Beast is not the kind of thing that you can take anywhere; it doesn’t do polite company or in fact, company of any kind.  It runs to its mysterious wills and whims, scorning conventions and expectations, acknowledging no master.  It follows you along, like a slinking cur, possessive and obsessive, and impossible to shake off.

Society has tried to name and thus, hopefully, tame a few of its cousins.  (Although whether by naming the beast it is actually tamed or whether the name just allows a formal introduction, a handle by which we can grasp and try to explain the presence in our lives to the rest of society is a different debate).  There was the Hound of the Baskervilles, of course, a creature whose actual substance still remains contested yet looms large and fearsome in the popular consciousness.  Then there is the more slowly popularised Black Dog whose presence and impact cannot be contested but is still a highly unwelcome visitor.

The impact it has had on me is similar (perhaps scarily so) to that portrayed by the pictures and words of Matthew Johnstone as he charts his relationships with his own beast, Black Dog.  After all, it’s not the nature of the beast that is hardest to deal with, to live with, to explain but the impact it has on our lives, our relationships and our outlook.  Perhaps by talking about these creatures openly and honestly we can start to address the issues in a better, more reliable manner.  Perhaps that’s why they need names.

I live with Mongrel Beast.

Candy Floss Nights

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(Candy Floss Abstract – I cannot upload, process or post photos at the moment because the gremlins won.  This is the photo you would be seeing).

Soft, magical

Spun strands

Pretty pink

Floating

Pegged up

High, out of reach

Attached to the mundane

(Sock dryers, of all things)

Yet still fantastical

Whimsical

Alluring

But so out of reach

Can I have some?

Please?

Everyone else has some

Do they take it for granted?

Stuffing it in their mouths

Sticky fingered

Consumed

Gone

They move on

They can always have some more

Another time

Any time

But not me

Wistful

Staring

So ephemeral

So out of reach

I’d be so appreciative

Of even just a little bit

Please?

Everyone else has some

Tantalising

I can see it

I can taste it

But so out of reach

Perhaps some other time

Why not me too?

Soft, magical

Pretty pink

But so out of reach

A Picture Metaphor of Depression

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A Colour Image of a Sunshiney Day on a Beach with a Black and White Person - A Visual Metaphor for Depression

I opened up this file and had a strong feeling of how I wanted to process the image.  At the time, I didn’t know why, just that it would be a lot of work and concentration for my shaky fingers and foggy brain.  As I worked away, slowly rubbing away the colour from the figure in the centre of the photo, what this image represented to me became clear.

This is what Depression feels like from the Inside.  The world can be beautiful, full of figurative and physical sunshine and yet you are numb, distant, Outside of all of it.  There is the World and there is You.  You belong neither in the World or even really in You.

Perhaps if you see this picture, either the image above or in real life, it’s easy to see the World and it’s easy to see a Person.  But you on the Outside, do you see how Depression is?

Perhaps you cannot understand how it feels to be miserable, to be numb, to feel completely alienated from the Outside.  You see the sunshine, you see the sand, you see the sea and you feel happy.  Perhaps you cannot understand how it is possible to not feel happiness in such a beautiful place, on such a beautiful day.

I don’t understand either, I have to admit, but this image, to me, represents what Depression feels like, how Depression can look like.  Just as it is hard to recognise or understand the Outside, especially a true or real Outside when you suffer with Depression, perhaps it is also hard to understand the Darkness from the Outside.

Submitted to WordPress’ Daily Prompt:The Outsiders