Thursday, April 22, 2010

13- Showers

I love showers, but I esspecially love Outdoor Showers. My grandparents lived on Cape Cod for my entire life (they moved this past summer to florida- highly disappointing). Since they lived practically on the beach, they had an outdoor shower (of course!) My grandfather built it himself, right up against the house, sandwhiched in by one of the numerous flower gardens my grandmama kept. It was made of wood, painted a light blue-ish gray, and open enough that green leaves would poke their way through the planks and cause you to feel as if you were showering in the jungle. With the sky blue and bright over head and the breeze gently finding its way to you through the cracks in the walls, the prism-like column of warm water became space-era tube of transportation.

12- Poppies

Poppies are one of my favorite flowers. This is saying A LOT because I love flowers. When drawn perfectly, they almost inspire me to get a tattoo (but that would never actually happen as I am far too frightened of needles). I own a pasta pot and a large frying pan that are covered with a beautiful poppy print. When I cook dinner with them I feel the need to wear high heels and pearls and an apron just because it makes the world so perfectly wonderful and adorable. My current journal is by the illustrator Jill Bliss. Obvi there are poppies on the cover and many of the inside pages as well. I highly reccomend her journals and everything else she makes. Her style is unique and colorful and floral- whats not to like?!

My good friend Jon is from California. The poppy is California's State Flower. According to this recent video, California is at this very moment a Wizard of Oz Wonder Land. Watch it- you willfeel magnetically compelled to hop into the car and speed off Westward.

11- Poems about Death

Speaking of poetry..... I wrote a ton of it this semester. Here is another one:

Laying in the bath
she is
pink and puckered
like a strawberry rinsed under the faucet of the kitchen sink.
Supple, still, and silent
Her breasts her thighs her eyelids
speak for themselves
as the final air-bubble-messenger-of-life
makes its way to disappear at the surface.

It is kind of upsetting since it is about a girl who has just drowned herself in the bathtub.... but I still like it a lot. Around the same time I wrote this one, it is also about death. You can tell from the last line when the speaker says "I have been saving up my oxygen."

You are my Space-Age dream
I want to experiment with the anti-gravity of your breath
Whisper into my skin so that I may float upward
I’ve been feeling heavy lately
My head is not even underwater
There is moldy dirt dripping out my ears
Soil moist in the corners of my mouth
and under my tongue
Scrub me clean with your sterile heartbeat
Probe me
I am following the fish with my eyes but when they turn they evaporate into the air
The red one is my favorite
When are we going to leave for Mars?
I’ve been saving up my oxygen.

I find this specific poem to be exceptionally sad because at first it seems that the speaker is going to be saved through the love from this other "Space-Age Dream" person, but then it turns out that it is too late. They are hallucinating and haven't been breathing.... they have been buried and laying dead in the earth for too long. The poem is someone's postmortem thoughts.

I think often poems must be controversial or disturbing in order to be effective. My creative writing teacher once told me that all good poetry is about death. I appreciate beautiful, spiritual, and straightforward poems just as much as upsetting ones. Either way, they are all beautiful, inspiring and full of truth.
Poetry always, always, speaks to my heart.

10- Poetry in Third Grade

In third grade we memorized 100 lines of poetry per quarter. I still remember specific parts of certain poems... specific couplings of lines. One of the poems that frequently comes into my mind is a poem from Shakespeare's The Tempest titled Full Fathom Five:

Full fathom five my father lay
of his bones are coral made
those are the pearls which were his eyes
nothing of him doth fade
but doth suffer a sea-change
into something rich and strange....

That is typed just from memory so it might not be entirely accurate. Im pretty sure there are a couple of more lines at the end.... something like: sea nymphs hourly ring his knell. hark- how I hear them, ding dong bell.

The fact that I was taught the importance of poetry at such a young age has certainly shaped my life. I love poetry and can instantly recognize a bunch of famous poems upon hearing their opening lines.

9 Its a Dry Heat

The other day it was newly hot outside as well as incredibly DRY. i am an east coast girl, through and through, to the core. even more, i grew up breathing in air heavy with humidity. not surprisingly, this dryness nearly killed me. and the kicker is.... no one else even noticed anything! i felt like i was being sucked and shriveled dry. i felt as brittle as my grandmother's Christmas Season peanut brittle. i was miserable and whiny about it all day. i longed for the beach. i longed for the coast. i longed for the heavy, wet, suffocation of east coast seaside air.
So I wrote this:

I’m a plant. I am a pretty little colorful flower and I will only grow- I will only exist and survive and be- if you sprinkle me with salt water. If you drizzle the ocean onto my head and bless me with throbbing whispers of creaky ship-prayers and gasps for oxygen. How am I going to make it if I am not pushing myself up out of sand-soil? Seriously, I don’t think this all-natural process of photosynthesis, of self-feeding and fueling, is going to take place if I do not have these additional, necessary, life-supplying elements.

8- Interior Design

do you love interior decorating as much as i do??!

check out this awesome website for ceramics:

aren't they just perfectly lovely?!

here us another fun website:
[it focuses on fabrics]

i could look at interior design and decorating websites for eternity.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

7- Romanticism

Nature has always, always been my main inspiration when it comes to poetry. In class our teacher asked if we had ever experienced the sort of divinely inspirational poetry-inducing experience that Wordsworth had obviously felt and alluded to. My answer is Yes. Yes, of course.
The first of these incredibly memorable experiences took place when i was in the 4th grade and my family was vacationing in Switzerland. I had bought a beautiful new blue notebook which i had glued a fantastic postcard of two white tigers onto the front of especially for the occasion. I was dying to write in it, but i wanted it to be good writing, i wanted it to be special. Thankfully i did not have to wait long before i experienced the monumental life-affecting thing i was looking for. Trummelbach Falls is a series of 10 waterfalls which wind in and out of the mountainside. They can be viewed from the inside of the caves they have carved over time, or from the outside. Standing in the mist of one of the falls i felt it. Inspiration took over me, forcefully. And i began to write. I wrote pages, literally, of poetry regarding the waterfall. regarding switzerland, love, my family, the lush countryside. I stood in the dark wet cave, water dampening the pages of my perfect notebook, and i wrote so intensely and deeply that i cried. Eventually my patient and accepting family encouraged me to come out and continue writing in the sunshine as we went on along our touring. I went, but i did not stop. I continued this epic poem non stop for the remainder of our trip.
This would definitely be the first documented experience of nature inspiration that i have had but it is definitely not the first to have taken place. I recall sitting in the middle of our huge rhododendron bush as the sun set one late afternoon and watching everything around me turn golden and sparkling in the light of the setting sun. this also made me cry and i immediately ran into my house to retrieve a pencil and notebook in order to capture the experience. unfortunately when i returned not only had the sun set, but i was unable to accurately express either the beauty or how it made me feel. this threw me into such a deep and startling sadness that i had never before felt. i remember writing instead about how i was not able express the experience. instead i managed to memorize the moment in my mind so it could be drawn upon at an instant later in life. i was 7. the lasting disappointment has always followed me around and is probably why i feel such a strong need to write about things immediately when i feel them

Thursday, January 28, 2010

6- Half Baked

okay, so this has little to nothing to do with english, but i just have to share. i was having a little bit of trouble buckling down and starting my Women's Lit paper. i had already facebook stalked everyone i could think of and i was getting antsy. i cant write this paper... i cant think... i cant write this paper... i want chocolate... i want ice cream... i want Ben and Jerry's Half Baked ice cream! yes yes yesss! now that will help me out.... and so i found myself smothered in my gigantic i-could-be-homeless coat shivering in the frozen dessert aisle at Smith's searching desperately for my drug of choice. its not here. its not here! this cannot be possible. oh my gooosh. what the crap?! i began to panic. when, like an angel descending from heaven before my very eyes appeared the most divine little package i have ever beheld: Ben and Jerry's Half Baked Fro Yo. yes. it is true. for all of you addicts out there who may or may not be upset or embarrassed by the, in my opinion, always amazing fact that you can eat an entire pint of ice cream in a heartbeat- this is for us. the healthy alternative. and it still tastes delicious. nothing lost except an extra unwanted attempt to go to the gym. i bathing in happiness right now, you have no idea.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

5- A Poet's Attempt at Fiction

When i am having a particularly horrible day i go to the nearest bookstore, sit on the ground, and grab randomly at poetry books. if i don’t like the title- i shove it back in its place. if i don’t like the paper color or smell- i shove it back. if i don’t like the specific combo of words my eyes fall on in the middle of the page in the middle of the book- i shove it back. i reach and grab and reach and grab and shove and slam until i eventually find exactly what my subconscious has been searching for. today i found Anne Carson. and it is so extremely fitting that i have found her, and today, of all days. yesterday i finished the most beautiful book in the world. it hurts; i miss it, a lot actually. i found myself wishing i could still be reading it for the first time. that i could be reading it eternally. i dislike re-reading. this book is titled Fugitive Pieces and it is by Anne Michaels. this book, and the new books i discovered today, are prose-poetry. they are poem-novels. they are a postmodern intersection of lyricism and plot. and they freeze me. they stop me cold and turn me off of the world. i read these books and i am gone. a poet's first novel, a poet's 'attempt' at fiction.... this is my true love. no genre completes me like this. the first book i read in this manner was The Way Through Doors by Jess Ball. it stunned me. and i have been forever grasping for more of it. today's books are precisely what i need, precisely what i want. Autobiography of Red and Decreation by Anne Carson. When i grow up- this is what i will do, this is what i will write.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

4- Indian Captivity Narratives

In my American Lit class we just read Mary Rowlandson's account of her time in Indian captivity. This was a wonderful reminder to me of one of my very first works of historical fiction! In elementary school I wrote an entire journal that was meant to be that of a young girl who had been captured by Indians. Although I can't recall much of the work itself, I do remember having the Indians nickname her Corn Silk on account of her lovely fair hair.

3- Reading Series- Joni Tevis

The BYU Reading Series is every Friday at noon in the library. I did not particularily enjoy last week's reading. There was only one line that stood out to me from the entire collection:
"When you blink, I hear it, eyelids' fluttering kiss."
This line is beautiful to me because the choppiness of each word seems to enhance the feeling of a fluttering eyelid.
I was surprised that I didn't like Joni Tevis's work. Based on the pre-reading I thought I would like her a lot. The pre-reading was an essay about grottos and a place called Rock City, and grottos are freaking awesome! Her actual reading focused on much blander topics and especially discussed death and other raw, dirty, exposed subjects which aren't my type.

2- Quotes

"How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives." - Annie Dillard

“It is not enough merely to love literature, if one wishes to spend one’s life as a writer. It is a dangerous undertaking on the most primitive level. For, it seems to me, the act of writing with serious intent involves enormous personal risk. It entails the ongoing courage for self-discovery. It means one will walk forever on the tightrope, with each new step presenting the possibility of learning a truth about oneself that is too terrible to bear.” - Harlan Ellison

"Real editing means staying in touch with lots of writers, and poking them on a fairly regular basis about what they are writing and reading and thinking and obsessing about and what they have always wanted to write but haven’t, and also it means sending brief friendly notes to lots of writers you have never worked with yet in hopes that you will, and also it means listening to lots and lots of people about lots and lots of ideas, some or all of which might wend their way into your pages, and it means being hip to the zeitgeist enough to mostly ignore it, and it means reading your brains out, and it means always having your antennae up for what you might excerpt or borrow or steal, and it means tinkering with pieces of writing to make them lean and taut and clear, and always having a small room open in the back of your head where you mix and match pieces to see if they have any zest or magnetism together, and it means developing a third eye for cool paintings and photographs and drawings and sculptures and carvings that might elevate your pages, and writing captions and credits and titles and subheads and contents pages…." - Brian Doyle

"Fill the papers with the breathings of your heart" -William Wordsworth

“The only way you can write the truth is to assume that what you set down will never be read. Not by any other person, and not even by yourself at some later date. Otherwise you begin excusing yourself. You must see the writing as emerging like a long scroll of ink from the index finger of your right hand; you must see your left hand erasing it.”— Margaret Atwood

Thursday, January 14, 2010

1- Getting to Know You

Hello! My name is Emma. Here are some fun things about me:

1.) I am an identical twin.
2.) I drink Lavender Rooibos tea before going to bed.
3.) I often read myself to sleep, which has been hard on my glasses.
4.) I am from Northern Virginia [15 min outside of D.C.] but spent my childhood just a train ride from London in Weybridge, Surrey.
4 1/2.) I have spent nearly every summer of my life on Cape Cod.
5.) I have 12 plants in my bedroom.
6.) I am terribly afraid of birds.
7.) I do not like meat; however, I do quite like bacon.
8.) I enjoy going on walks and playing outside- especially making forts in the woods and exploring ruins.
9.) I eat excessive amounts of fudge.
10.) I love wearing dresses.