Here is a draft of a poem I am working on about our beach by Lake Huron. I don't feel like it is done yet, but it is my slice of life in that I am working on it, and it tries to capture an image memory from this month.
the beach is movement
Waves frozen in motion.
Dunes that seem fixed, pinned by ice
but change every night.
Under the relentless wind
that speaks in a million languages,
silence presses on the dark
It tucks itself in like the
colorful chairs and
umbrellas stacked in grey garages.
the beach is texture --
ice as sharp as jagged teeth and
ice as smooth and
voluptuous as a body.
This post is inspired by this blog, which I've adapted into a writing prompt that I do with my Seniors. This is just a start...
This is 42
42 is the very essence of bitter and sweet.
The bitter is easy to find. Your age shows. You are now a Ma'am. You parent an adolescent who is quickly growing away from you. Old identities: sexy young thing, wild child, mama. No one will ever call you these again.
The sweet is also easy to find. 42 is being invisible to the world but more visible to yourself. You know what good taste is and have the money to have it. Competency builds a nice, cozy armor that you wear like a fashionable shawl.
42 is having dozens of selves nestled inside one another like Russian dolls. Selves that peek out and haunt current moments. What would 20-year-old, smoking, vintage heels wearing Alaina think of my current obsession with running? What would 11-year-old Alaina, who dreamed of being a missionary, think of my current job 1/2 mile from my house-my life that mostly fits inside a 5 mile radius, a life grooved with routine? I spend my days with the judgements of these little Alainas, and I smile at them sweetly. They knew so little.
My thoughts are ruffled and crashing like waves on a windy beach. Each idea jumps over the previous, pushing emotions' buttons, playing me. I'm looking for a calmer self, the part that watches above, below or somewhere in all this chaos, but wherever this self is, if it even exists, it keeps getting subsumed by an urgent need to add an item to the grocery list, or plan what I will say to my 7th grader about his grades, or wonder if turned my phone off.
Through the noise, I walk into the studio. It's morning so the sun shines in chunky blocks on gleaming blond floors. I try to notice. My shoulders hunch forward, like my heart is waiting for a blow. I try to notice. An idea for a lesson plan for tomorrow shoots through my head. I try to notice and let it go.
The class starts hard: planks, body shaking, arms feel like sticks trying to heft the weight of a body full of stories. There's no room in this head now for anything but breath that shakes through my body.
I hear the inhalations and exhalations of other bodies. My own breath is a whisper, a message from some other self that exists below, above, beyond. Finally here.