I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about how to make this blog the best it can be, and I realized that it’s trying to do too much. It started out as a craft blog and then slowly became more about my creative writing…I want to simplify things and turn this back into a blog for crafts. I know that means I will probably lose follower (not that I have many to begin with) but I shall move my writing to another blog and try and post more there. Hopefully this works for everyone, but especially for me.
(Wrote this months ago for a contest and never entered it. However, I’m quite pleased with how it turned out! I actually wrote a little about the process of writing this piece in this post. Enjoy!)
By the fifteenth month of the drought, the lake no longer held her secrets. The chest sat on the now-dry lakebed where it had settled all those years ago. As her father and brother struggled to open it, her hands grew clammy. She had no desire to reminisce about the man who had stolen her child.
* * *
She had been young when she had met him. Having friends in common warranted a meeting, and at first, she was alright. After a year, however, she wasn’t alright; she was nauseous and tired and sometimes manic and sometimes sad. When the little stick displayed a pink plus sign, she understood the nausea and the fatigue. It would take her three more years to understand the stretches of mania and sadness. As for him, well, she would never fully understand him.
Three years after giving birth, her doctor told her she was bipolar. She did not know then that her diagnosis could be a weapon.
On her daughter’s fourth birthday, he disappeared with the child. Suddenly, her life no longer had a purpose and her hands were full of papers, legal papers, that accused her of being an unfit parent. She wondered how she could be an unfit parent when she was the one who carried another being for nine months, when she was the one who pushed that being into the world for ten hours.
Her first day in court was nerve-wracking. She wanted to tell the judge everything she had done to love her daughter, but all he wanted to know was how she had not. She listened as her ex shared stories of times when she had “endangered” their child. It was so personal, so calculating and cruel. “I was young,” she wanted to say. “I didn’t know what was wrong with me.” But no one gave her the chance.
After her daughter’s father won custody, she moved back home. She still had some tokens from her time with him: a watch he gave her on their second anniversary; a t-shirt of his that she had liked to sleep in – tiny reminders of what her life had been and what it would never be again. She dumped those memories into a chest and threw it into the lake on the edge of her family’s property.
* * *
The chest is covered in horrible red-brown rust that reminds her of blood. In a way, it is a wound, and she knows that if the wound is opened, it might kill her. She has taken her meds regularly for only fourteen days. She does not feel she has control over her illness yet.
Her family is curious about the contents of the chest. She does not admit that she knows those insides, knows them better than she knows her own daughter. It has been five years and she has no idea what her child’s favorite color is or what she learns in school or how she styles her hair. The only thing she knows is that the chest is her Pandora’s box, filled with secret shames she cannot set free.
Six days after retrieving the chest, her brother manages to open it. Instead of releasing turmoil, it brings peace. She has a bonfire and the trinkets of her past turn to ashy ghosts. She calls her ex and asks to see her daughter. He does not say yes, but he does not say no. It is a start.
I’ve been writing little…tidbits of things almost every day for a couple of weeks now. I figured I might post a few of them, if I felt like they were worth sharing. Here is one from a few days ago.
I want to drop a plate
in the middle of the tiled floor
to let you know that I feel
just as shattered, just as broken.
I think I would take pleasure
in seeing myself in its shards,
but I can’t be bothered to pick up the pieces.
It’s been a while since I’ve made a post about crafts! Guess it’s time to start making some of those again. I do have a number of projects I can make posts about now.
A lovely actress named Mary Kate Wiles has a video series on her YouTube channel called Craftversations. On Craftversations, she interviews and does a craft with other artists (generally other LA-based actors, I believe). Today’s post was inspired by one of the crafts Mary Kate did on that very show (Volume 9, with Daniel Vincent Gordh).
Materials used: canvas (the one I bought actually had a newspaper print already on it – from Michael’s), letter stickers, craft paint.
Basically, I arranged the letter stickers – using a quote from Harry Potter, naturally – onto the canvas and then painted over them. Once the paint dried, I peeled the stickers off using tweezers, and voila! A fun decoration for my room.
(Goodness, is it June already? I really need to start posting here again! I’ve made some crafts that I need to share as well, but in the meantime, have a little poem! I wrote this for my boyfriend, because he likes poems that rhyme.)
With her pen, she began to write,
Late, late into the night.
She wrote of things that caused her fright,
She wrote of things that made her spite,
But when she finally turned off the light,
She dreamt of things that gave her might.
It’s been a little over a year
Since the boys in blue caused his death.
At 25, he had barely started living
And maybe his past wasn’t perfect
But whose is?
Freddie’s death was unnecessary.
There is no place for ‘rough rides’
Or abuses of power.
Protocol is not a choice,
But police brutality is.
It’s been a little less than a year
Since violence erupted
In the streets of Charm City
And we saw how anger corrupts
Even the best of people.
Freddie’s death was a catalyst,
A wake-up call, an anthem.
He showed that our society
Is more broken
Than the body he spent his last hours in.
(I’m not completely happy with this, but I felt it best to post today due to the events it references. Timeliness and all that. Written as a challenge based on this post but also because I’ve been thinking about this lately and wanted to say something about it.)
(I was thinking about good writing and this strange little poem thought itself into existence.)
I am turned on by letters mingling on a page
Forming words that evoke images
I am excited by the way a writer arranges their words
With care and precision
If they strip down to their bare selves
Exposing their truths,
I am ecstatic.
I aspire to be like them,
To take a reader’s breath away
In a moment of pure delight.