Tag Archives: life

Not Afraid Anymore

There are two ways of doing things. Continuing in your old habits because you know you like them, or continuing because you’re afraid of change. “Maybe the way things are is the best way things can be,” you tell yourself. Maybe. But it’s very rarely the case.

It takes a while to work up the courage to be truly afraid and make it through anyway. To see what’s on the other side, and realize—this is what I was afraid of? Fear of the new is a ball and chain, bars that keep you locked inside and away from what could be, what would be if you dared.

It takes time. It takes endurance and willpower. It takes a nudge, a shove, maybe more than that. And once you’re on the other side, one day you’ll realize that you’re not afraid anymore.

Not afraid. You’re out of your cave, blinking in the sunlight, maybe for the first time.

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Shelf by the Window

Sometimes it takes a little time to learn what you knew all along.

A reflecting pool. A book, a place, a human being.

A change so big you can’t help but see everything with new eyes. It takes an earthquake to shake the dust from every item on the shelf, and you’re wired to notice change, ignore the rest.

You always knew what was on that shelf—the one that holds your interests and talents, your goals and wants and needs. But now that everything’s shifted, it’s clearer what’s real and what’s illusion.

Change makes you notice, and once you notice, you change. Stepping further down the road that leads where you’re going.

You knew this was a crossroads.

You don’t like change, but you didn’t like how things were either.

A change of scenery, ripples in the pond, shivering wind in the treetops.

Tell Me a Story

Tell me a story
with a happy ending
with lots of adventures in between
with love and laughter
and averted disaster
and pictures I can see.

Tell me a story
and I’ll tell it again
in moments small
in snatches of time
tell me of your days gone by
so I can be there too.

Tell me a story
of the places you’ve been
the people you knew
the troubles you’ve had
how you made it
how you didn’t
how you lived to tell the tale.

And when you’re tired
your stories all told
your days full
your life calm
you’ll ask for my stories
and when you do
I’ll have them waiting for you.

I’ll tell you a story
with a happy ending
with lots of adventures, today, yesterday,
with love and laughter
and averted disaster
and plot twists all the way.

Ink Runs Dry

When the ink runs dry
the stories have been told
the thoughts written down
the loose ends tied

there’s more to life
than a book and a pen
there’s more to stories
than writing them down

this is why writers have to get up and live
feel their stories
make their own choices
be fearless like heroes
be a little bit mad
and see what others don’t see

get up and look.
leave the desk and go live.
write every day
but not every day
if life deserves to get in the way.

The stories will stay with you
draw your hand to the pen
but don’t force it
not today
let the ink
run dry.

Worth Waiting For

DSCF5929sThis little plot of soil has every type of wildflower you could think of growing on it. Except, there are no flowers yet. No blossoms. But green leaves and stems and vines are everywhere, sprouts and shoots that soak up the sun and look as if they could grow into towering giants.

DSCF4737sOne bud opened before the mower came. Small and red as rubies, the ragged petals unfurled, the light caught in its throat, and it sang to the sky. This first flower was also the last.

The Gardener mowed down the flower buds, the vines, every last little bit of life was cut down and died in the sun. Everything, gone. Then the surgery happened. The Gardener pulled out the tender living things by the roots, one by one, every last bit. The soil was raw and tender and exposed. There was no more promise of flowers in the sun, of vines curling around susan stems, of new life sprouting from deep dark earth. The future was empty.

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It wasn’t too bad until the hoe started coming down, chopping gaping wounds in the earth, removing every vestige of green that had once been so beautiful. When rain came it stung the soil, pounding hard where droplets had once fallen softly, their path slowed by tender leaves and letting the earth drink slow. Now the rain hurt. It carried away crumbs of black. The soil lay flattened, soggy, and hopeless.

It waited. Waited until the sun began to shine again. Waited to warm up. The Gardener took the hoe that had caused so much damage and fluffed up the dark loam. The soil was ready for something. Ready for anything. What was the world waiting for?

Specks dropping in the wind from a hand high above, landing in the bruised and beaten dirt. Seeds that immediately began to warm and send out fuzzy roots. Seeds without competition, that couldn’t grow in the shade of living things, that wouldn’t have lived among the roots of established life. The seeds sprouted. Grew green and tall and pulled the crumbs of soil together, healed the cracks, softened the rain, and then sprouted buds.

These buds weren’t like the wildflowers. This soil wasn’t like the wild loam. Unsatisfied, it was tender, still waiting for new beginnings until the first shafts of yellow peeked from leaf covers and reflected the sun in all her blazing glory. This is what we were waiting for.

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Seasons of Change

Spring has long been my favorite season. I love to feel the aura of growth everywhere, of the world waking up. Even at night I can sense the change through the temperature and tone of the wind.

Now it’s late summer, and change is coming again. The sun’s light is clearer with lower humidity, so everything looks brighter. The slanting rays will get much lower before the leaves fall, but this year I can feel that the warm days are numbered, and it seems the plants and insects know as well. In spring the change is more sudden, but fall’s magic is just as strong.

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Morning glory, dill seeds, and cilantro blossoms in my garden.

These are the two turning points of the year. I think they’re the most spellbinding.

Oddly, when seasons change in my own life, they don’t get a warm welcome. After a few years of college and attempting to be a grown-up, I know that events I feel the most apprehension about are the ones that change me the most and result in the most learning. Driving a car. Figuring out how to manage a film shoot come rain or shine and only one chance. Attacking unexplored subject material. I fear the unknown, but after looking back on the new experiences I’ve survived, I see that excursions into uncharted territory yield the strongest memories—they make me feel more alive.

Seasons of change are beautiful. They come in bursts. And just like Autumn’s leaves of fire, they don’t last for long.

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Stereopair with sumacs!