#FridayPhoto ‘Walls’ #Photooftheday ‘Home Sweet Home’

Within city walls
Streets are calm,
Houses safe,
Home sweet home.

Cruel worlds lie beyond,
Banish pain,
Exile joy,
Home sweet home.

****

Within These Walls Home Sweet Home.

As I was walking by the ancient walls of the city of Cordoba, first built by the Roman founders of the city, around the second century, and later reinforced by subsequent conquerors from central Europe, the Visigoths,  later Muslims from North Africa, and finally the Spanish Monarchs from the north of the country, I was wondering about our need to conquer and feel safe from subsequent conquerors.

We have been building walls around our houses and cities for centuries and and now, two thousand years on, we still need to feel safe. Now the enemy is a virus, not an army, but we still retreat back within our walls, because the safety we perceive in the prison of our own making, is more important than the  happiness we give up by not venturing outside.
Home sweet home.
****

#SundayWalks ‘Sometimes The Sky’s Too Bright’ #Poem

Sometimes the sky’s too bright

To see the clouds or birds.

Sometimes the sun burns through

The shade of leafy trees,

And blinds impatient eyes,

Still searching for visions

Of angels smiling

At the fire in her eyes.

Alas the sky’s too bright

To taste the salt in her tears,

Or quell the thirst in her heart,

And yet she journeys on

In search of her angels.

#Wednesdaythoughts Gibbous Moon and Happy Birthday #poems

Waning, Gibbous moon,
Broken yet proudly shining,
Facing morning sun,
Slowly shrinking into black
Ebbing then swelling once more
Like our lives, our hopes, our dreams.
****Happy Birthday

Be safe, be happy,
Wherever you are,
Laugh like the child you were,
Smile like the woman you became,
In my memories and my dreams,
You’re always there,
Unforgettable,
Unique,
The other half of my youth,
The one who left too soon,
Be safe, be happy,
Wherever you are.

Harvest Moon in Cobalt Sky #Haiku

Slowly, Silently,

Moon glides across cobalt sky,

Bursting with my dreams.

****

You all know how I love the moon because it energises and inspires me. In fact, my most popular all-time post is The Moon in Jane Eyre, and I have many poems inspired by this extraordinary planet. Check out yesterday’s blogpost if you missed it all about Full Moon Rituals and goal setting.

This is my view right now from my study. I’m literally blown away, writing poems, jotting ideas, preparing affirmations and setting goals for the month ahead. (I’ll be posting tomorrow morning)

How does the full moon make you feel?

Please add any moon related posts in the comments, I’d love to check them out!

Full Moon Rituals and #Tanka #WednesdayThoughts #WWWBlogs

The moon shone last night

Like a beacon in the sky,

I watched, mesmerised,

As she glided serenely,

Granting my dreams and  wishes.

I took these photos last night, from the window of my study, as I was editing one of my almost finished novels. It’s not full yet, the Harvest Moon will be tomorrow, 1st of October, but it was so mesmerising that I started on my monthly full moon ritual, which I’d like to share with you today.

Firstly, I’d like to say that although I haven’t copied it from anyone, I can’t say I’ve invented a ritual to the full moon, which is something that has been happening, in one way or another, probably since the first human looked up and saw this beautiful planet (I know some experts say it isn’t a planet, but others do, and I’m not going to get into a semantic or scientific argument here, I’ll just go ahead and call it a planet, because I want to endow it with all the majesty it deserves).

I usually feel energised and optimistic around a full moon, especially as I’m able to watch it shrink and grow every night, as I live in the south of Spain, where the sky is often clear. So, I seize this welcome enthusiasm to boost my creativity and I also reflect on the past month and plan my goals for the month ahead.

I’m going to share my own 3-step ritual, which I’ve developed over some years. It works for me, and maybe it will work for you, as it is, or with some adaptations to your lifestyle and preferences.

I use the words goals and wishes interchangeably, depending on my mood, but I think we’re all aware that a wish is a goal without a plan and a wish really needs to have a plan to happen.

I open a notebook I keep for this sole purpose and follow this simple but empowering process.

Step one: Major Goals / Wishes

I think carefully about what I want to accomplish in the coming months and write down three goals or wishes with three main words only (articles, prepositions etc. don’t count).

It’s really important to be specific and clear. This step usually takes the longest because often we’re not really sure of what it is we want exactly, and that may be why we never achieve it!

Here are three examples:

  • Balance Mind and Body
  • Finsh my Ongoing novels
  • Improve my relationship with my sister

This first step is the most general, but it’s important think carefully about what you want to achieve and be specific.

Step Two

Take each goal and set three sub goals. That means three things you must do to achieve the major goal.

So for example for goal number 1: Balance Mind and Body, your three sub-goals might be:

  • Take a 30 minute walk
  • Eat a healthy diet, and
  • Challenge your mind to grow

Step Three

The next step is to take each sub goal and write three more sub goals for each one.

So the whole thing would look like this:

1.     Balance Mind and Body

1.1 Take a 30 minute walk 1.2 Eat a healthy Diet 1.3 Challenge your Mind to Grow
1.1.1 Buy suitable shoes and clothes

1.1.2 Set a time for walking

1.1.2 Prepare a playlist or audiobook

1.2.1 Find out about sensible diets

1.2.2 Buy specific book/s

1.2.3 Plan a weekly diet

 

1.3.1 Listen to a Ted Talk and comment

1.3.2 Read a self-help book

1.3.3 Learn a new language/hobby

2.     Finish my ongoing novel

2.1 Set a time to write 2.2 Activate my creativity 2.3 Read a variety of genres
2.1.1 Collect notes and outlines

2.1.2 Reread everything I’ve written

2.1.3 Plan my next steps

2.2.1 Start writing morning pages

2.2.2 Interview my characters about novel

2.2.3 Journal with questions before sleeping

2.3.1 Read similar books to my own

2.3.2 Read latest bestseller

2.3.3 Read a completely different genre

3.     Improve my relationship with my sister

3.1.Make Contact regularly 3.2 Set up a monthly meeting 

 

3.3 Understand my negative emotions

 

3.1.1 Send weekly text-message

3.1.2 Phone every 8-10 days

3.1.3. Remember significant dates

3.2.1 Invite her to a family lunch

3.2.2 Ask her to go shopping with you

3.2.3 Visit a common relative together

 

3.3.1 Investigate about sibling relationships

3.3.2 Write an imaginary dialogue with sister

3.3.3 Learn about meditation and relaxation

All in all you have 39 general and specific goals, which will help you achieve your dreams/wishes/goals.

I don’t usually prepare a chart like this one, I did that for your benefit, so it would look clearer, but I’m actually thinking of using it myself!

What I do is write each goal and sub goal on a new page and include notes as I revise, which I do regularly, including new ideas and acievements.

At least once a month when there is a new full moon, I revise my goals, reset or modify and do the same process all over again.

It does take time, I usually take a couple of evenings at least. You’ll find that most of the time is devoted to thinking and writing goals with clarity, there is a great power to writing it all down and holding yourself accountable for what you do to fulfill your dreams, because it’s not enough to just look at the moon and wish, you really have to do something about achieving it, too!

Finally, I’ve learnt never to be hard on myself, sometimes things don’t work out as planned, life happens, there are hold-ups and changes of plan, that’s why I revise and go ahead. Life is a journey, not a destination.

Ink and Blood #Poems inspired by #Poet T. S. Elliot #Bornonthisday

Blood and Ink

You ask me why I write

And I answer, frankly,

To shed the excess blood

Threatening to drown me

If I stop spilling it

Wildly, mercilessly,

Over the blank, white page,

Begging to be tinted  

With the secrets of my soul.

 ****

T. S. Elliot was born on this day, 26th of September, in the year 1888. His famous quote, ‘The purpose of literature is to turn blood into ink’, reminds us that writing a poem is often a painful and emotional, soul searching experience.

Find out more and read some of his wonderful poems here 

By Lady Ottoline Morrell. Public Domain. Wikimedia.org

Writers translate feelings into syllables and words which are painstakingly plucked from our conscious and subconscious minds and poured onto a blank page.

As I wrote in a previous post, writing a peom is, ‘excruciating, disturbing, and always frustrating, but there’s no alternative. It’s the only option for the poet, condemned to pursue that perfect combination of phrases, sounds and emotions, she will never find.’

And yet, it is cathartic. There is peace, for a while, when a poem is completed. And then, we begin again, because the search for the perfect poem may be closer, but it is never over, is it?

 

 

Writers in #Autumn #Tanka

Writers in Autumn

Season of Memories,
Weighing heavy on our hearts,
Bursting to be told,
Minds whirl with inspiration,
Words pour out like aged wine.
****

Welcome back to my blog!

I hope you’ve been coping well with the uncertain and unexpected times we’ve all had to deal with.

Some challenging situations have come my way, as well as the epidemic we’re all coping with, fortunately the storm is ebbing, and there’s a light at the end of the tunnel.

However, not everything which has required my undivided attention has been disheartening, I’ve also had the joy and privilege of meeting my fifth grandchild, Marcos, who is a real blessing for our family.

I always feel a bit nostalgic in September, after the long summer months and change of season, but I also have lots of new projects on the go, which I’ll be sharing with you shortly.

Meanwhile, stay safe and be happy!