Writing and (w)ripening

Someone asked, how do you make time for this to become part of your life?  How do you even find time to write?  That’s a good question, I thought. 

Let's start with when.  When does this happen exactly? 

Well let’s see.  I touch in with writing after morning meditation.  

Then, before I start work at my lovable, ever-present sidekick day job, I date two pages in my notebook, and number the right side 1-16.  On the left side, I "park" all the things I need to do that day.  Then I go back and write 16 lines, and usually get surprised by what comes out.  

And then here and there, throughout the day, I look for a picture that moves me.  Then I write the haiku I will post sometime around 6 pm that evening. 

But it wasn’t always like that. 

In fact, I still wake up in terror, remembering the series of days where I realized that while it was the biggest part of who I thought I was, I was only actually a singer/songwriter in my mind.  Though I can (almost) smile at the memory now, it was a very painful realization. 

In large part, that’s how I got to the Folk Alliance Midwest Region annual gatherings.  It's how I started taking Steve Dawson's class at The Old Town School of Folk Music.  It's how got to Lamb's Retreat for Songwriters a couple of times.  And it is certainly how I got to FitzGeralds and The Friendly Tap, where I met those who have now become some of the dearest people in the world to me, and in who’s company I became who I thought I was.  Someone who writes. 

And now?  Well, now, I understand that as long as we're alive, there have to be times that we are something in our own minds, that we are still figuring out how to be in the world.   

Back to the whole theme of incipient spring, and the catharsis we seem to need to go through by either denying ourselves something, or doing something we think we should be doing, in preparation for it.  We seem to need a tangible way of throwing off the heavy snow of winter, to welcome the verdance of spring. 

Or at least, I do.  Why is it so?  We loved Winter when it was on the way.  We loved it while it was here…for awhile. 

Did it just catch up with us?  The long nights?  The cold-enforced close quarters?  Or did we just finally have to confront who we are in our minds, alongside of who we are in the world? 

Either way.  Spring is coming. It’s thrilling.  The journey I would like to take in preparation for it, is to bring more of who I think I am into the day-to-day of who I actually am.

On the off chance that you would like to join me on this journey, I share this my newest collaboration with you.

Once again, I threw my fates to the wind on UpWork, and have found a wonderful new design collaborator.  Rhiannon White, who lives in Canada, took this drawing on narrow-ruled notebook paper, with writing from the other side bleeding through, and colorized it into this. 

It is part of a series I have been developing, “you, (w)ripening.”  I have shared it with fellow artists and people who don't think of themselves as creative types one on one, in workshops, and weeks-long classes.  

You just start with one thing.  Do it for a week.   Make it small, so easy you can forget you've done it by the time you remember you have to do it.  Then add a little something: a poem, a drawing, a letter.  Try to do it at the same time every day, and prepare to be surprised when you find inspiration waiting there for you at your appointed meeting time.  Of course there will be resistance. Believe it or not, it dissolves kinda unbelievably easily by you just doing one small thing over time.

Try it for yourself.  If you feel like it, I would love to hear how it goes for you.  

The world is cautiously opening back up.  When that happens, if all goes as planned, they have invited me to come and teach a class along these lines at the Old Town School of Folk Music.  I’ll keep you posted on that. 

Meanwhile, it seems appropriate to share this here, with those who, like me, may be feeling the stirrings of Spring and want to be more of who they are in their minds out, in the actual world. This is how everything changed for me.

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