Ways We Perceive Our World

Hello Dear Ones!

This has been a fascinating week of revelations.

It all began while reading Kate Clayborn’s book Love Lettering. (A charming book about the complexities of relationships, all types of relationships. Well written, it has great characters & a well thought out and designed storyline.) Kate’s prime characters each have, as do we all, their own unique ways of perceiving and responding to their shared world. His passion is for numbers. He sees, thinks, defines, even eats and breathes numbers ~ their shape, use, complexity, simplicity, malleability. Her passion is for letters ~ the structure of them, colours, textures, fluidity, use. She sees them everywhere: in books, on billboards, store signs… Not the compilation of letters into words, but as a standalone piece of art when shaped into a uniqueness all on it’s own with a variance of font shape, design, thickness, even emotion. For example, have you ever read a book where the opening of each new chapter has the very first letter larger than the ones following it, often bolded with swirls & curlicues, some shaped like balloons perhaps interwoven with vines? That letter sets the stage for the emotions and the experience you’ll have as you read that particular chapter!

Anyway, to get back on topic here… all of this had me contemplating how I perceive my own world. After much thought but no resolve, I let the idea go. Then one night through the week a dream woke me up ~ the answer right there. My ways of perception are through curiosity, satisfied through the use of the camera lens and my own eyes, and presented back to me in the words of poetry. What a precious revelation! I think, eat, read, play, perceive everything as a poem – usually the potent brevity of a haiku style. And you’ll often find me tapping out syllable counts with my fingers. I have to keep a notebook & pen with me at all times!

Once I was comfortable with my own method of perceiving my world, I began to look around me. My husband and I talked about it, and he shared that he sees his world through patterns. My best friend sees her world through connections or links that flow one into another. I can imagine that Vincent van Gogh saw his world through colour. Leonardo da Vinci likely through function and structure.

Each one of us unique. All of us see our versions of this world from our own perspectives. With each perspective we have our own unique perceptions. And that makes for a rather complex world if we are all seeing things so very differently. There’s a tale about the perception wheel worth reading. My husband Mike tells it simply and well here.

So I bring my post back to you, Dear Reader. What are the ways you use to perceive your world? When and how do you find yourself happily obsessed with the world around you? Anything you’d care to share? Do drop a line to let me know. I’d be delighted to learn of your particular style!

In Light & Laughter

Marcia

 

Lightbulb Moment

Hello Dear Ones!

What do synchronicity, mathematics, games and poetry have in common?

I certainly found out in an astonishingly delightful way this week! In a rather quiet (insert: bored) moment, I was inspired to begin reading a novel by Kate Clayborn: Love Lettering. What a charming, well-written book! She references mathematician John Horton Conway who was apparently known to play games all the time: dice, playing cards, he even played with the Slinky! According to the novel, Conway’s behaviour was at first considered unusual, even to himself. “People used to think – even he used to think – he was wasting time. But he was really working out math… loosening up his mind for ideas that were on their way.” Interested, I did some research and was pleased to learn that Conway was a real life, 20th century individual, and a prolific mathematician.

So, why was I interested? Reading the quote from Clayborn’s book, I took a sudden deep breath and must have uttered quite a verbal expletive because my husband Mike asked me what was up!

“That’s me! That’s me with my crossword puzzles, my online word games, my apparent obsession with them at the oddest of times! That’s my way of opening up to receiving my poetry! Poems are on their way to me during those times!”

In that very moment I took my first bold step into self-forgiveness for what I had been perceiving, through this entire global pandemic, as being pure laziness. Sure I had been writing and posting poetry every single day without fail since even before the lockdown in our area of the world. But it was just poetry! (What do you mean: “Just poetry?” Mike would ask!).  I didn’t see my poetry as having value. However,  reading that sentence from this somewhat historical perspective, I felt as though someone had opened up a glorious skylight from, and for, my heart… a precious breath of fresh air & sunlight! My lightbulb moment! 💡

Back to my original question: what do synchronicity, mathematics, games and poetry have in common? We’ve touched on all of them except synchronicity.

And yet we have actually dealt with that as well. Starting as far back as J.H.Conway’s ‘extraordinary’ discovery of his own at first perceived laziness in his life, Slinky’s ‘accidental’ discovery & invention, my apparent need to honour the value of my poetry and for the self-forgiveness I needed… all culminated with my husband suggesting I read a book he had just finished.

Then today, my online Twitter #SpiritChat family discussed: The Heart’s Synchronicity. A natural fit, of course!

What synchronistic events have occurred in your life to confirm for you that such a phenomenon does exist? Do share! I’d really love to know!

In Light and Laughter,

Marcia

(BTW: it was sad to learn John Horton Conway passed away just last year – 2020 – from Covid-19.)

 

Poetry at Play

Hello Dear Ones!

Recently I’ve had the privilege of expanding my poetic skills with the coaching, guidance and inspiration of several fellow Twitter poets. I was encouraged to commit to writing a poem a day through 2020. Well, we all know how that year unfolded! For me, it was a series of lessons, of deep diving within my own being. Powerful! Not only did I succeed at the commitment, but I have continued to do so daily  since! And it wasn’t all doom and gloom. There has been a great deal of play in reading the works of others as well as in my own writings. Especially the writing of my favourite ~ the haiku: a Japanese-style poem of 3 lines &17 syllables, usually in a 5/7/5 format. 

Just yesterday an online friend challenged me to write a 3-word, 3-line haiku with the required 5/7/5 syllable count. Three words! Yikes… it meant I had to come up with two 5-syllable words & one 7-syllable word and to make it actually sound like a coherent thought or series of thoughts!

Here is what I published after much playful deliberation:

incongruencies
infinitesimally
extraordinary

You know, it actually was really fun to do! The fun aspect is what encouraged me to use that theme as my topic today.

Referring back to a post written by me several years ago. I chose a snippet of that article as an example of Poetry at Play. Though not haiku, it is a technique I’ve often taught to youth and to folks new to writing their own poetry.

Here’s the description:

Envision an 80 something woman with long ringletted hair, wearing a sun-faded yellow, broad brimmed hat with wilted blue silk flowers. She sports an aged gingham print summer dress hiked to her knees, showing off her rolled-down support hose while riding a rust-red bicycle. She hums a tune that has her smiling. Though you do not recognize the tune, imagine it to be … any tune you choose. Possibly: “K-K-K-Katie, Beautiful Katie, You’re the only G-G-G-Girl that I adore” … Or maybe: “Barney Google, with the goo-goo-googly eyes, Barney Google with a wife who’s twice his size” … ( yes, those really were songs that were popular in her day!)

Now, make a poem from the above as it inspires you. Make it playful, fanciful, light, loving. Yes, you can make it sad if you are so moved … yet my hope for your expansion today would be to show you how easy it can be to become poetic – in every aspect of your life, from the frying pan’s sizzle to the awe of dew drops on the first crocuses of Spring – and to do it playfully as a child might.

Here are a few examples from my own inspiration:

The yellow hat brim flapped and flapped
Against her cheek it slapped and slapped
The bicycle chain it tapped and tapped
As the old woman hummed a tune.

Or how about?

The blue flower wilted, drooping sadly
Rolled support hose retracting badly
Little old lady peddling madly
Humming gladly.

Or this one?

Yellow hat and wilted flower
Hair in ringlets a winded mess
Support hose rolled beneath the knees
Above the knees a gingham dress.

I’ll leave you now with, hopefully, inspirations floating around in your own mind. Go find that pen and some paper or open up your word processor and have fun!

So today, this 19th of February 2021, I wish you a play-filled weekend!

Happy poeming…

In Light and Laughter

Marcia

If trees could speak

Well worth 3:50 of your time. 🌳🌱🌲

_____

Ancient One

Ancient One

As I walk through the forest
the trees start to sway
to the music they hear
coming quietly
through my earphones

The apple trees
shed their blooms
upon me
while laughing quietly
at my surprise…

In a corporate boardroom
a $50B deal is made.
Far away, a baby laughs.
A grasshopper leaps.
Which one is most important?

Hugs,
M&M

Free Hugs Poem

Hi Folks:

A wonderful gift from our friend Glennis. We are both awed and honoured!

Free Hugs
_________

Free hugs…
by the edge of the Harbour
on a Summery Sunday.
Open arms
that have
crossed oceans and continents.

Arms that…
have cradled infants,
fought wars,
prayed
and driven cars.

Arms that…
have held ice cream cones,
have stolen
and given
and written letters of love.

Arms that…
are strong,
tanned…
frail arms.

Arms that…
swim in warm lakes,
held books,
planted crops
and picked flowers.

Arms that…
have loved,
felt hate,
rested
and toiled.

Arms reaching out
for a free hug
by the edge of the Harbour.

Free hugs…
imprinted on the soul,
carried home
to
every corner of the world.

How beautiful.

Glennis Taylor, 2019

Hugs back!!
M&M

Celebrating Liz


Hi Folks:

Mike’s sister Liz passed away 23 years ago today. Her greatest legacy is her children, who have grown up to be remarkable people in their own right. Liz was also a talented writer; unfortunately none of her stories are in digital format, which means that they’re tucked away safely in a box somewhere. To that end we thought we’d offer two of our stories instead, as well as a story about a story. All of them have to do with butterflies. Marcia’s first: Continue Reading →

Remembering Father on Mother’s Day

Hi Folks:

Marcia first wrote this post in 2010, and much has changed since then. Marcia’s Mom and both of our Dads are now gone. At the same time, we welcomed our newest grandson – Beckett Vaughn Kempinski – into the world only nine days ago. His parents are celebrating their first child! And on we go…

Beckett Vaughn Kempinski

Hugs,
M&M Continue Reading →

Suffused

Hi Folks:

More than halfway through October and we have yet to do a Photo of the Month post for September… oh, well. A part of the reason for that is because we’re currently on vacation in northern BC. We’ll have more to share about our adventures as we go along, but just to give you an example, yesterday we took a walk along the Butze Rapids Recreational Trail outside of Prince Rupert. It’s a 5½ km trail, and most people would likely complete the loop in 1½-2 hours, but being photographers we managed it in just shy of 5 hours. As we walked along, racing the snails as we went, we were endlessly captivated by what we saw and captured with our cameras. However, as often happens for us, the longer we were there the more the forest seeped into us, suffusing itself into our Being and making us a part…

Tree House

Tree House (photo by Marcia)

Suffused

I have been suffused.

 

It began with the rain, rounding off my hard edges, wicking away doubts and fears and forming a fertile ground.

For the roots that began to seek the cracks, crevices and hidden places, gradually separating my bones and joints…

And planting a tree in my heart; a great cedar that outraced the wind to the sky then settled, staid…

An elder, passing wisdom to the young and listening to the travel songs of the birds, gathered over millenia…

Then leaning, tired, finally coming to rest and drawing a blanket of earth over my skin to sleep…

Only to be awakened by the calls of the young, nursing themselves with the tenderness of accumulated time…

 

Complete once more.

Nurse Log, Butze Rapids Trail, Prince Rupert, BC

Nurse Log

Hugs,
M&M

Victorious Voices, 2017!

Victorious Voices 2017

Hi Folks:

Last week marked the 8th annual Victorious Voices Festival here in Victoria! We missed the first two years, but we’ve been stalwart supporters of the event ever since. If you want to read our previous posts on this amazing creative blending of people and talents, you can find them here. Back in 2013 Mike wrote his first (and so far, only) slam poetry piece in honour of the courage of the many young people who perform during this event. If you’re interested, you can find that here. Continue Reading →

Remembering Father on Mother’s Day…

Hi Folks:

This post is from the archives (2010), but as Mike’s mom and both of our dads are still with us (Marcia’s dad is 92 and going strong!) we thought it was worth revisiting!!
_____

Hello Dear Ones!

As long as I can remember, every Mother’s Day – without exception – my Dad would be heard to say, at some point to anyone and everyone within ear shot: “Don’t forget Father on Mother’s Day!” Though we lavished Mom with gifts and flowers, cards and, usually, a meal out, we always remembered Dad in some fashion.

Though my Mother has left this world physically, she is with us in our hearts and memories. It is to our memories of her and our hearts’ yearning for her that I dedicate this post in advance of the Mother’s Day weekend. MoM, wherever you are and whatever celestial mischief you are getting into today … Happy Mother’s Day!

(BTW Dear Reader: if you hear thunder and see lightening on Sunday, May 9th, 2010 … that’s my Mother telling us ‘kids’ that she’s thinking of us! How do I know? Well, that’s a story for another day …) Continue Reading →