You Know The Way…ll

…after you’ve

already written something

and think

that’s it

I can go to sleep now

I’m done

only you can’t

because

after you’ve navigated

your way into bed

in the darkness

and he’s already snoring

but not quite sleeping

and your warmth

suggests

you might be Michael McIntyre’s dishwasher

but all you can think about is

the next in a possible series

but shit

know

you’ll forget

if you don’t get back up

or sneak the kindle under the bedclothes

and he’s still snuggling in

not quite snoring

and going

mmmm

and I go

sorry

need to get up

I’ll forget

and he goes

you owe me

and I say

I know

big time

and I do

because

how many

don’t get it

but accept it

that you write

even

in the night

after Drambuie

and giggles

Blogs Reunited

To make up for the fact that I might be a bit of a plank, I’m issuing an invitation.

You see, I quite frequently do my blog reading in bed with my Kindle. It’s less cumbersome than my laptop and I can pretend that I’m going to sleep when really I’m catching up and promising myself five more minutes. And, if it falls on the floor when I drift over, I haven’t ruined a laptop – done that one before. Drambuie. Hell of a mess.

Now, if any of you use a Kindle Fire for bloggy business you may be aware that the buttons for follow and pressing send on a comment are gie close together. This may have resulted in me unfollowing some people almost immediately after making a comment. Yeah, I always make a habit of commenting then unfollowing. Good practice. Not.

It may, however, be down to the WP gods, as some people I refollowed commented that the same thing had happened to them. And, right enough, I’ve been surprised, a few times lately when folk followed me – what, again? I thought. I don’t want to make false accusations and my Kindle is a bugger, at times, what with predicting my text wrongly and making me look like a moron. Of course, I know how to spell luvverly poest. I just don’t know how to turn off the suggestions that keep coming up. Also, it has this nasty habit of making whole other words up which would be fine if I lived in Gobbledygook but I don’t. Just talk it sometimes.

Anyway, I was on Donna’s Always On My Mind Blog Party. Don’t you just love a good party? And I kept seeing people’s names and going, I haven’t seen you around in ages in my reader or emails. Then I clicked on their blog and the little follow button, down there at the right hand side – why did they move it, I liked it where it was, up there, ^^^ – showed up and I had the red neck of refollowing people I didn’t know I’d unfollowed.

I could go into that dohickey page where all the blogs you follow are listed and check each one but that doesn’t help me know who’s not there. Only who is. And those ones show up in my reader and emails.

Do you see what I mean?

Well, the long and the short of it is that I thought I’d open this here page up to all who read my scribblings and any who do not, (if you happen upon here, welcome!)

Please feel free to link a post below and take the opportunity to make new bloggy friends. I will also do my utmost to read each and every one. And, if I come across another blog that I have inadvertently unfollowed, I’ll just quietly click follow without any further explanation. Deal?

Now, I was going to turn off comments on this so’s people would go to comment on other people’s sites and not here (watch out for that follow button, though, if you’re on a Kindle) but then realised that you wouldn’t be able to post a link to your blog post.

:/ Tech, eh?

I hope you meet new people through this and that I get to catch up with those I’ve lost track of.

Bring your own booze. I don’t drink on school nights – well, not often. So, I can’t call it a party. More a reunion, I guess.

Oh, apparently, you’re better to just post one at a time so, if you want to link more than one, best do each separately. I don’t know why either. Maybe a favourite of yours or your most recent? Whatever you like. I follow lots of different types of blogs because I love lots of different types of things – photography, art, poetry, politics, cooking, crafts, travel, science, you name it, – so don’t be shy. You’re more than welcome.

Happy 1st February (when it comes, 42 minutes and counting). That has nothing to do with anything other than the fact that Spring is getting closer and January is a bitch. I’ll be glad to see the back of her. But very happy to see you here.x

Thinking November

I have the absolute cheek to have just signed up for National Novel Writing Month 2015. With last year’s novel still incomplete in edit, what exactly am I thinking?

Truthfully, I’m thinking that I am a great procrastinator, that I would be awful in the military life because I can’t take orders – even from myself, apparently.

However, I’m also thinking that this time last year I hadn’t even signed up to commit to 50,000 words in a month but I did it in the end.

I’m thinking that I knew the first book had a sequel as I was writing it and it seems daft not to get that down, considering it’s been mulling away in the background.

I’m thinking that I may be sorry to commit to this once again, especially as I obviously hate editing – unless it’s other people’s – just like the writing it down part.

I’m thinking, though, that I have nothing to lose and that I might even manage more of the edit on the first while working on the second because I’ll be so immersed in it again.

I’m thinking that I’m about to move school again in a couple of weeks and that could mean more or less work. And I don’t know which.

I’m thinking, ‘Oh,shit, why am I even letting others know?’

And, mostly, I’m thinking, blogging is one thing, Anne-Marie, but why exactly did you start that in the first place if not to actually gain the confidence to write that book you always knew you would.

Right now, I’m thinking why am I talking about myself in the third person? I hate that.

Frankly, I don’t really know what I’m thinking.

But I’m inclined to share my thoughts, sure or otherwise. So here you have them.

Last year, I swore off blogging during the week to make sure I focused on Nano. It was hard to let go of the reins. Your blog’s like your baby. Well, I think it is. You kind of nurture it along and watch it grow.

Last year, I had tremendous help from guest bloggers who made sure my baby was fed and watered. You know who you are. I don’t know if I’ll be able to let the reins go so completely this time – I’m a born mum – but I would be grateful for offers.

I spoke this over with my family last night. Mixed reception.

‘You haven’t finished editing the first one!’ D’uhh, I know.

‘Does that mean you’ll be holed up in your office again for a whole month?’ Thought that was a bonus for them, myself.

‘Do it, Mum!’ I think I’m gonna.

‘Whatever makes you happy.’ Thanks, hon.

So, I’ve registered. Another one of my not-thought-this-through-type-of-plans-that-I-don’t-make.

I might even try to plan this time – I’ve got nearly two whole weeks before it begins. Loadsa time. :/

So, this is by way of being my notification that I’ve enlisted. About to take orders from myself again. Someone has to keep me in check in the absence of a sergeant-major, I’m thinking.

Household Tips #5 – The War Gene – it’s a thing

Why is it that the second most expensive item I own sits in the driveway next to the first? If I could put the car in the house I’d do some weather damage limitation and combine the value. But I can’t get the car up four steps. Or through the door. It’s a thing cars won’t do.

So it sits out there wondering why I don’t value it enough to give it shelter. I let the dog and the cat in. The weans all have a place to rest their wearies. But, poor car, despite faithful service and being one of my best friends – we go everywhere together – languishes in the great outdoors like an abandoned pet. I talk to him. Usually, it’s, ‘Don’t you dare make that noise!’ and ‘ Come on, boy, you can make it.’ Kinda the conversation I have with my husband from time to time. And I let hubs in the house.

The reason I am a wanton mistress to Ford is because my garage is full of stuff. Stuff it should not be full of. Some of that stuff doesn’t even belong to me or anyone else who now lives here.

There are china dolls with creepy faces.

china dolls

No way are they getting back inside. Eldest daughter left them here when she moved out. Along with a collection of other dolls from far flung parts. It was a thing she did at one point. Years ago. So why are they still there?

That’s down to a thing I do. I’m sure I inherited what I like to call ‘the war gene’. My parents were both ten when WWll began. They lived through the bombs and evacuation, the rationing and the make do and mend years.  Couldn’t get bananas till the banana boats made their way back up The Clyde. Powdered eggs. Wtf! 

So they were raised to cut cuffs, turn collars and stitch repairs. Make your own. Reuse buttons and bits and bobs. Value everything. Waste nothing.

I’ve got that gene.

I recycle everything I can. Want to weep when I visit the recycling plant and see all the TV’s and fridges that have been discarded. I want to find out if they died or if they just became obsolete to a better model. They never answer when I ask.

Part of recycling involves not throwing things away if I think a) I might use that later b) that’s a bloody shame, what a waste c) that’s too good to get rid of d) that stuff’s not mine e) I’m so ashamed, I’ve hardly used that.

When my mum died my siblings and I had quite a time of what to keep and what not to keep. She had the war gene. Everything seemed to have sentimental value or intrinsic value. After attempting to go through them I stored them in the cellar. I now have a cellar with books and papers belonging to my mum and not the heart to go through them again. Still. Six years come St. Andrew’s Day.

Add into the mix two other kids who have flown the coop, left gear, come home again, left more gear. And, in the case of one, is still here because a) she really can’t afford it while at college b) thinks she can but is actually quite enjoying having all facilities for her and her cat c) can’t quite make up her mind. It’s a Mary thing.

The other one is definitely out but is currently in a furnished flat so we’ve got his shit too, including a) a microwave b) bits of furniture c) umpteen boxes d) fishing rods and equipment because he doesn’t want to get rid of them but isn’t fishing for fish at the moment. Bigger fish to fry. That’s a Joe thing.

other folks' stuff 3

Further to the mix, add my husband’s tools/gardening equipment/wood that he can’t bring himself to part with because a) he might use it b) he’s a dab hand at making and repairing c) it’s all perfectly good wood d) it’s my bolthole and I keep what I want here. Wood. It’s a Frank thing.

wood and scooter

And, that’s a scooter hanging from the rafters. Because, maximise space. Clever, eh?

Into the cauldron, add all my paper work from schools (because, yeah, I’ll use that again), years of writing, household crapamailia that has to be kept in case one day I need to prove that, ‘I did so bloody pay that!’, books of mine, more books of mine, a wide variety of craft materials that I’ll definitely get back to using when I have time and little trinkets bought/made by offspring. Why is keeping that tat a thing?

University/college stuff that my kids want to hold onto but don’t want messing up their flats.

A pram. Yup. Beautiful pram that was Anna’s, in the cellar, waiting. I’m not having any more! But, seems a shame to get rid when I have daughters at that sort of age. I know!

Guitars that have been replaced with better models but I feel sorry for.

guitars 4

Poor buggers. They need to go. Nothing can save them now. Wonder if guitar heaven is a thing. They did nought wrong.

Um, what else?

Chairs – because we need extra ones for occasions. But not all the time. Why buy more every time? Common sense thing.

Bikes. Fair enough, they get used.

Clothes. Fecking clothes. Do you have any idea how much room (not to mention washing) clothes for a big household take up? Fortunately, hubs used those tools and wood and screws and savvy to build custom-made wardrobes in every bedroom. Begs the question why one or two of my crew still hang their clothes on the floor. That’s a thing I hate.

I’m also really good at recycling clothes and fill up bags on a regular basis. Put them in the garage till I’m ready to take them for recycling. Then my eldest daughter brings more in that she’s getting shot of, we all have a rummage and snaffle the ones we like. And I send the rest away. To the garage. Pending. It’s an Anne-Marie thing.

With determination, black bin bags and a hardened heart I’m back to asking, ‘Does this give me joy?’ If it doesn’t, it’s going. Apart obviously from the crap I have to keep for the purposes of a) I’ll definitely, maybe use that at some point, b) that’s not mine to decide on, c) aww! my mum/dad/weans/memories.

I don’t see the car having a place to shelter any time soon. What am I, Superwoman? But, I might manage to shift things around a bit, make a few phone calls threatening decapitation of creepy china dolls and I’m definitely throwing out all my school crap. That’s what the internet is for.

Well, that and telling you all about how I propose to spend my Saturday – opting to streamline my life. Again.

It’s a thing I do. From time to time. Genes, got a lot to answer for. Been proven. Real thing.

Another thing. Procratination. Not started yet. Thought I’d blog about it first. It’s a WordPress thing.

And the sun’s shining. Ford is calling to me – take me some place, far from this driveway. Leave all this behind. They do so talk!

aa_1982_pontiac_firebird_trans_am_knight_rider

Aye, ah wish. I’d make houseroom. Not the Hoff, bleugh! Here Kitty, Kitty.  Weird thing, saying that. I’m not even a cat lover. More genetically programmed for dogs.

In Moderation

Comments missed,

though unintended,

Default settings changed

to ease the strain,

Unmoderated, means

some got right by me,

Mortified I might

do this again.

Twiddled with the knobs,

reset the buttons,

Moderating so that

I won’t miss,

Always much appreciated, kindly,

take this poem as a virtual kiss.

This does mean, however,

that you’re pending,

And time is rarely seen

as my best friend

But I’d rather take the time

to answer always

Than risk the chance of

doing that again.

Apologies to kindly readers,

Don’t now know how many may have sneaked on by,

I’m trusting I can keep up, beg your patience,

Enemied by time but I will try.

 

 

F This (may cause offense to delicate sensibilities or anyone younger than em, 12 maybe?)

Can’t we all be f#*°®¥°*¢ friends

As birds that f#*°¢ together

F*°«~*’s such a better choice

If we all had f¢¥* f#*°®¥°#

 

I used to couldn’t swear, it’s true,

Erupted just instead,

Blessed myself and wondered why

Couldn’t even curse in head,

Then thought a bit about some words

And joy of all behold,

Realised perception’s worth,

I practised, grew quite bold.

Didn’t say them when they caused

Any deep offense,

Didn’t say them to my dad,

You’re joking, not that dense.

But found that words like feck and fuck

And shit and sod and damn

Kept volcanic in its place,

Accursed sort of dam.

Use them sometimes as a laugh,

Some jokes just need that jest,

Other times I use them, well,

Hubby knows those best.

Found a fuck to give right here,

Well many, just be warned,

Fucks aplenty, no asterisks,

But, with humour, lessons learned.

Haven’t counted but I know

There are fucks galore

But funny fucks and useful fucks,

I’m keeping some in store.

Only one that I can’t see

Is one I wrote at first ^^^^

Flying fucks from feathered friends

With not a single curse.

Symbols might suggest there’s more

Than merely letters missed

We fill the blanks in anyway

So no censorship for this.

http://tonysbologna.com/2015/07/02/social-media-and-the-state-of-fucks/

Wide Shut For Sixth

Out of that darkness, that pitch of oppression,

Out of that blackness, that void,

Out of that dank trap of timeless cessation,

Fluttered wings fully deployed.

Flapped they with fury till furies they fled,

Eons of hostile subverted,

Out of the dungeon where demons have bled,

Their intentions subtly diverted.

Out of the abyss the albatross flew,

Chains still swinging from claws,

Stronger the wings that have practised harnessed

Though aerial given to pause.

Out from down under, down deep but not out,

Out from Cerberus’ grasp,

Felt in the darkness, eyes rested shut,

Earthbound by blindfolded task.

Up through the channels, tunnels truncated,

Veering, uninjured as such,

Instinctively seeing, hearing the light

Guided by sensory touch.

There to the high plains, a leap with all faith,

Rattling links still attached,

Power encompassed in breadth of the stretch,

Night, by flight, fully matched.

Sometimes in darkness, especially in pitch,

Only blind sense will suffice,

Failing the five, depend on the other,

Wide shut for eye of sixth sight.

 

I had written the first eight lines of this yesterday just based on ‘out of’ then left it to brew. In comments with Paul I happened to mention that I close my eyes to see better in the dark, which is true. I don’t really know why I do it but it feels more natural to sense my way through darkness than it does to try to see. The rest was born from Paul commenting, by return, that it sounded like a life credo. Maybe it is. 🙂

Pep Talk

I believe that most people who write feel they have a purpose in doing so. Whatever that purpose may be we can, at times, be doubtful of our ability to communicate. We may doubt the words we choose, our technical capabilities, the methods we use, the subjects of which we speak. Worse, we may doubt whether any of it makes any difference to a single soul other than ourselves.

To love writing, to want to communicate something, anything, and to doubt whether it has any meaning or to find ourselves in a place when the words just won’t come is an awful place to be for any writer. Over the last few weeks, or perhaps longer, I’ve experienced some of these doubts and it has come to my attention that a number of other bloggers, of whom I’m very fond, have been experiencing some or all of the above.

I don’t believe in coincidences. I believe in amazing connections, ones that sometimes blow me away by their synchronicity. Not for the first time here I find myself renewed by reading the thoughts and feelings of others and the honesty with which they share them. I also god bless email and friends across the ether. Some of the allusions in the following poem are born of reading others’ posts, comments and emails. And listening to an enlightening Ted Talk. One that makes the excellent point that I, courtesy of that beautiful synchronicity, will adhere to – I can do better. In all areas of life. I just have to try.

it’s too early to be calling me

or too late, I’m comfy

and you know that I can’t rise

your bugle pierces

no respite, it hollers

get up lassie, seek the prize

 

I bleary eye my boots on

and I splash my face

and question silently

who’re we kidding, what’s the point

battle’s over

all a waste of energy

 

but I’m trained for long haul

war and peace

and justice just the same

and tired is no excuse, you’re in the army

you’re a soldier

not a number but a name

 

and it matters that you uniform

and polish spit

and stand up ever straight

you can’t lie abed

and give up ghosts

they’re at the gate

 

there’s a battle to be fought

and in conscience

can’t object

for to not to try, surrender all

to give the field to hate

how keep respect

 

so get up soldier, silence voices

don the boots and arm yourself

and fight another day

ennui, attitude

and poor perception

out the way

 

these ruminations

round and round they go

we rue, beget

pivot points, dissatisfied with somethings

round and round, encircling, draining and despairing

in a helix of regret

 

get the little boots on

you are awesome

and you know you are

believe it soldier

you’ve a purpose, we’ve a purpose

we still orbit that same star

 

We Bring What We Can

Your photos breathe the beauty of connection

I bring what I can

Your depth of love and willing intervention

I bring what I can

Your wisdom voiced with ageless perception

I bring what I can

Your mysticism met with introspection

I bring what I can

Your analysis, reasoned frustration

I bring what I can

Your healing gentleness and understanding

I bring what I can

Your thoughtful prose and poetry, attention

I bring what I can

Your humour, stoicism, recollections

I bring what I can

Your friendship ‘cross the distance, humbled

I bring what I can

All grist to the mill from splendid isolation

We bring what we can

So many faceless voices, willing

Aspirants of worldly entente cordiale.

In reading and commenting on blogs today, and the word ‘isolation’ running through my mind since waking, I find myself humbled and grateful to be part of this great blogging community. So many others I could have mentioned. So many people everywhere bringing life and thought to their pages. Always reaching out. Bless you all. And, as my lovely blogging bud, Rene, always says in closing her emails and posts – Peace and Love.

Traffic Jam

I keep missing comments and fond familiar voices,

Apologies to all concerned,

In time-restricted choices.

Another week of trafficking in all their dirty tricks

Should see me back to normal,

Far removed from politics,

At least on board to reading other stuff but guff,

Honest to god, now passed my chin,

Nearly had enough.

Some light romance, some music, a video or two,

Some photographs, a few more jokes,

Anything would do.

One more week, well, less in fact, then, bugger, I’ve reports,

Twenty-six, my darling kids,

Progress, tricks, endeavour for six-year old cohort.

Pretty soon, as time will tell, I’ll get to browse again,

Until then, apologies

For bypassing bloggy friends.