Sometimes people will come in the shop and say, “Do you have a card for _____?” And, of course, I have everything BUT that. So I was thinking I could make something ambiguous that might fill several needs:
It’s the way you….
~hold my hand when we walk
~pick out the perfect birthday present, even when I haven’t asked
~let me cry when I’m sad
The card is blank inside, so you can write whatever you want.
But, this could also go in another direction…
It’s the way you….
~leave your coffee mug on our wooden table all day
~drag me to your parents’ house when I’d rather stay home
He he! It’s all in the message.
“A lumbar laminectomy is also known as an open decompression and typically performed to alleviate pain caused by neural impingement that can result from lumbar spinal stenosis.”
Her yellow skirt, draped
long across scuffed boots,
followed her into the waiting room
where we sat in hard chairs
drinking cold coffee, watching
repetitive news on the television,
may I interrupt? she asked, raising
her hands above her head
if you need or want a prayer,
please come forward, we will
pray up here together, if you
feel the need, she said
I dropped my chin, stared at
the stain in the carpet while
the family of blond women
with red fingernails trooped up
making a circle around the woman
One by one they rose from
their chairs, and she prayed
for us all as I sat there glued
to my chair, wondering why
they hadn’t cleaned the carpet.
I have been retired from teaching for four years, but I still find myself thinking of September (or late August) as the beginning of a new year, a time to reflect and then move forward. I loved starting each fall with a new class, sometimes a new room, and new plans.
These days, I’m not headed into a classroom, but I still find myself looking forward and thinking of this time as a beginning. Finding a new press in Lyme, Connecticut a few weeks ago has given me something to focus on. As soon as the rollers arrive, I’ll be experimenting with it, seeing what I can do beyond my current proof press.
But more than that, I am trying to envision what I want to do with these presses and my studio. I love having students, especially those squirmy and enthusiastic elementary and middle schoolers. I enjoy helping them figure out how to organize their ideas and put their thoughts on paper (or keyboards). And when I’m not with them, I turn to my type and ink. I had originally thought I’d limit myself to printing my own writing, creating broadsheets of my poetry. But I’ve had fun creating cards to sell in our studio, too. And with my partners now working on bookbinding, the possibilities are endless.
So here’s to starting again, a topic that I’ve revisited many times on this blog! I’ve changed the name of the blog to get things rolling.
When I tell people what I’m doing now, writing and learning to letterpress, I often get a quizzical look. I’m not sure if people doubt my writing ability or can’t figure out why I am knee-deep in ink, metal and wood type, and mineral spirits.
“Art enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time”. ~Thomas Merton
Isn’t it funny how days of wonderful moments can be derailed by a comment directed at the heart of what we do? Even painting our door bright purple didn’t help me feel better.
I’m trying to shake it off and not take it personally– because it wasn’t intended to be. So I’ll continue to do what I believe is important. We can’t be all things to all people.
Practice letting things be. That doesn’t mean you can’t actively work to create a different tomorrow. It just means you make peace with the moment as it is, without worrying that something’s wrong with you or your life, and then operate from a place of acceptance. Lori Deschene
On the bright side, two recent acceptances (Vine Leaves Literary Review and Cactus Heart) have given me the boost I need. I write for so many reasons. Finding an audience is certainly one.
Now, back to the door.