Blog started in Jan 2005: 1st entries for Write in Every Genre. Then the REAL ME begins
|Family and friendship
I seem to only be drawing a whole group of mentors to mind, and cannot quite bring myself to choose one, at the moment to write a letter to. What I have noticed, which I wouldn't have before with out the prompt is a deep gratitude for where the feminine energies have appeared to mentor me! I am a little astounded, because I have been going almost a decade thinking I was really more attuned and empathetic to male energies, eventhough I am female. However, I won't discount any of it, because much of what is coming up for me this week is certainly informed by the power of the heart. And all those that I am thinking of are from just my first couple decades as an adult, when I am sure I was more grounded in listening to my heart, not as much for the most recent decade.
So, Dickinson poem,"A Bird, came down the Walk," immediately reminds me of something I wrote in College when I was fortunate to be in a workshop taught by Carol Black, creator of TV show: The Wonder Years. My poem from that, which I am remembering in idea alone here, was both a description of one of my common enjoyments -- watching a sparrow ahead of me on a walkway--turned curiosly morbid in observing a pillbug about to become its snack. I further observe that in my hurried, heavy walk, how I would have crushed the bug while the light arch of a bird's foot spares it that. It was a one-off kind of thing, which I know exists in original somewhere because I was proud of the praise written on it from Ms. Black. But do not think it was compared to Dickinson by her nor in my mind until this week -- and I do know I have read hers before. It astonished me to think there was similarity I had not realized before.
Oh, it took me so long this week to think of a mentor, I am ashamed to say. But that is because I was stuck thinking rather than writing it out -- there are many to be grateful for -- many related to writing. More related to "waking me up," so I choose Julia Cameron, who along with Mark Bennett wrote The Artists Way. In the narrative of it, couldn't relate to her addictions, but I could relate to her recovery, especially in her use of terms; my favorite: "frustrated creatives." I love her terminoogy, such as "crazy-makers," and practices like "morning pages," a writer's composting technique if you understand that reference. Natalie Goldman's, Writing Down the Bones, is another that squeezed me for every drop of my imaginative juice, and had me wishing to again reflower and fruit to be squeezed eternally.
I was prompted in a course recently to "explore the distinctions you draw, if any, between family and friendship. Is familiar friendship really possible outside the family?"
What about when you make friendship family -- in marriage? Or the brotherhood created by being conscripted to fight for your homeland's survival? I believe family is the primary place an individual learns how to draw others to you in friendship. Rule number one: family is your first, best relationship example. Rule number two: first learn rule number one. And I am not saying the lessons of the family are the same for everyone, nor happy/best practices for how to relate. But from there all other ideas come to you of how to operate in the world.
I wrote this poem as a study of the marriage pact of two literary lovers: Aragorn & Arwen, J.R.R. Tolkien's "returned" king and the elven maid he grew up with in the sanctuary of her father's realm. Their lifespans are different, (possibly) creating a tragic existence for one when the other is gone. Yet Tolkien himself, from the World Wars had lost more friends than he had family by the time he was beyond scholarly authorship, and creating Middle Earth characters and their histories.
My poem, a lament, follows: