#Blogtoberfest Day 30: On the Brink of Everything

On the Brink of Everything by Parker J. Palmer caught my attention on my recent visit to Barnes & Noble. He may be on the brink of turning 80, but while I don’t agree with some of his thinking, he does share the things that are true for him about growing older, being mentored when he was younger, and becoming a mentor to younger people now. The point is that people of all ages have something to learn from or share with others.

I totally agree. When I was in my 20s through 40s, I often gravitated toward older women who taught me so much. I even wrote a song called “Wise Woman” about my friend from Montreal who I met in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Then somewhere along the way, I noticed younger women were gravitating toward me, looking at me as a mentor and I love fulfilling that role. Sometimes it’s people I’ve met online or at church or wherever. Sometimes it’s my readers.

They say that when you want to learn something new, you have to be willing to be a beginner. And that’s me with music. I have to be a beginner. And so I’ve met such interesting young people as we travel this road together, whether music or poetry.

November is just a couple of days away and I really do feel like I’m on the brink of everything, experimenting with a bit of unplugging and planning another cross country move. I invite you all to travel that road with me. And while I hope to take a blog hiatus during November, I’ll be back to share any experiences/insights worth sharing and I invite you to do the same.

No matter how young or old we are, we’re all on the brink of everything that’s going to come next.

#Blogtoberfest Day 19: Things I Will Miss

I will miss the morning sunlight peeking through the trees,
soaring birds chirping their morning wakefulness,
squawking gulls flapping their wings,
treading shore birds scanning the pond for breakfast.

I will miss sipping my coffee on the lanai greeting the dawn with prayer,
scribbling my early thoughts,
clearing my mind of nighttime fears,
making room for gratitude and thankfulness.

I will miss cocktails and apps overlooking the springs at the BoatHouse,
strolling World Showcase,
martinis in the Wilderness,
dipping my toes in the ocean.

I will miss our dream kitchen,
white cabinets and quartz countertops,
undermount lights with a view
of morning walkers and evening golf carts.

But most of all I will miss
the last house where Skipper lived.

 

 

#Blogtoberfest Day 9: Epcot Food & Wine, Chocolate Art, and Coco’s Musical Story

Yesterday we made our third trip to the Epcot Food & Wine Festival –  this time with brother Bob. Little did we know that it also happened to be Columbus Day and the park was packed, especially for a weekday. Ugh!

Still, we had a blast sharing some of our favorite booths with family – the last time was back in 2010.

We started off with the Festival Center, tracking down the Chocolate display, including scenes from Coco, made entirely with chocolate. It was quite impressive!

Then we moved on to France for our favorite beignet with Hazelnut Creme with a glass of champagne – fabulous way to start the day.

Of course, we had to introduce Bob to the Ireland booth, then we chose the paella from Spain, Belgium, and Bob chose some items at India and Africa. We then finished up with my favorite Black Pepper Shrimp with Garlic Noodles in China – amazing! Rich got a Kung Fu Punch, and while refreshing, was too sweet for me.

On our last stop for the day, we entered the Mexico Pavilion for some much-needed air-conditioning and to see the Dia de Los Muertos exhibit from Cocol One of the exhibits showed time passing, lighting up the scene and then returning to darkness, revealing the dead family members reunited with their family. Really cool!

It was hot and crowded by then and Bob had some plans of his own to do some park hopping before returning to Epcot for some evening noshing, so we called it a day and let Bob continue on his way.

We’ve had such fun playing tourist with family but now it’s time to get back to work. Let’s see what I’m inspired to work on most – my music or my writing.

Chocolate Art

M3

Time to Retreat to my Writing Cave

We’ve returned from my super fun birthday trip to Mexico. The sad thing was that after we landed at LAX and picked up our rental car, we got a call from the pet sitter that our beloved 18-year-old Skipper was gone.

He was more son than pet. He’d been having good days and bad days but he kept rebounding, so I was hopeful he’d still be around when we returned. So with a heavy heart, we soldiered on with the trip, knowing that Skipper would want us to have a great time.

Friends and family told us that Skipper chose his way to go and, while no way would be easy, this would be best for all of us. That sounds like Skipper because he definitely did things his way. He was King of our house for 18 years!

My cats have taught me many things and Skipper has given me somewhat of a sense of what it must feel like to have a son or daughter go off to college, although I realize it’s not the same, but it does give me a peek into that emotion. I like to think he ran off to Nashville to pursue a music career or enroll in Culinary School. lol!

Anyway, because of this sadness, I’ve really pulled back from my music. I need a break. It’s too much of an Exfrovert pursuit right now for this Introvert, and I need to retreat, be quiet, and take time to grieve.

I am inspired to write, though. It’s quieter, more introspective, and after watching “The Durrells,” I’m inspired by writer Larry. I miss that kind of writing life.

So no 50/90 for me this year. Instead, I’m working on the third book of the “Real Women” trilogy, the one about Sandy cruising the Mexican Riviera, searching for her self-esteem and purpose in life.

In the meantime, why not check out the first two books in the trilogy: Real Women Wear Red and Real Women Go Hawaiian. For a limited time, you can get a special edition of Real Women Wear Red that includes book 2, Real Women Go Hawaiian.

April is Writing Month (#NaPoWriMo #CampNaNoWriMo)

I’ve been gearing up for writing 30 poems in 30 days for #NaPoWriMo this April but I’ve just learned of #CampNaNoWriMo (April version of #NaNoWriMo–Novel Writing Month). Something has got to give! After #FAWM (February Album Writing Month), I’ve decided that perhaps I should give my ears a break and write a novel and poetry instead. I can gear back up for 50/90 (50 Songs in 90 Days) from July-October.

I’ve never been a fan of these writing challenges before but, somehow, where I am in life is leading me to loving them.

I’d just joined TAXI, I still have two months of NSAI membership, recently enrolled in a Logic Pro X Music Production class and got some new killer speakers, so I am feeling a bit guilty about putting music aside to focus on other writing. But, I tell myself, it’s only for one month. I still have time for 50/90, and I still have time for the TAXI Road Rally in November.

Let’s see how this year plays out.

i Saw Him on a Video (#FAWM)

I Saw Him on a Video (copyright 2018, Kathy Holmes)
Songwriting Prompt: Retro

Verse 1

I saw him on a video, his name was Clay Mills you know
I jolted out of my seat and stared at a familiar face
He was much younger, his name was that of his grandfather
But if his dad was who I think he was, it couldn’t be erased

Chorus

I saw him on a video
My heart beat a little bit faster
I remembered those nights in the backseat of his Camaro
Nine months later
I said goodbye to the only boy I would ever love in 1985
I saw him on a video

Verse 2

It was like living in a small town, it was us vs them now
His father was a big shot, his mother a busybody gossip
They whispered their sweet offer to my poor mother and step father
Treating me like I was some kind of mid century trollop

Chorus

I saw him on a video
My heart beat a little bit faster
I remembered those nights in the backseat of his Camaro
Nine months later
I said goodbye to the only boy I would ever love in 1985
I saw him on a video

Bridge

I remember the day he went away
It wasn’t his choice, he lost his voice
When that evil killer called cancer claimed his life
His son was given away, and I lost two that day
The day the father and son were one, I was someone else’s wife

Chorus

I saw him on a video
My heart beat a little bit faster
I remembered those nights in the backseat of his Camaro
Nine months later
I said goodbye to the only boy I would ever love in 1985
I saw him on a video

Chorus

I saw him on a video
My heart beat a little bit faster
I remembered those nights in the backseat of his Camaro
Nine months later
I said goodbye to the only boy I would ever love in 1985
I saw him on a video

Unspoken (#poem)

Reading “Our Grandmothers,” a poem by Maya Angelou mentioned in Braving the Wilderness by Brene Brown, I thought about my poet grandmother and wrote this poem:

“Unspoken”

Some things should not be spoken
People tell me
By the way they ignore me
As if they do not hear me
And this grieves me

So I shall speak of it
Even when people try to turn it
Twist it
So that I will not talk about it

Implying I need therapy
That something is wrong with me
For not leaving it behind
Like a wheel that is broken
These things unspoken

They say this to silence me
To quiet me
To control me
But I have been silenced all my life

So I will continue to speak of it
When it’s appropriate
When it’s inappropriate
Say those who want to hide it
Bury it

Like burying the dead
These unwelcome thoughts in our head

The Sublime Art of the Unreliable Narrator

Today’s post from the Florida’s Writer Association, “The Sublime Art of the Unreliable Narrator,” got my attention, reminding me of a writing group I used to be a part of. We were chatting about something and I was offering my opinion and when, as an example for my point of view, I told of a personal incident, one of the writers said, “You’re an unreliable narrator.”

What??? No, an unreliable narrator purposely omits information to intentionally mislead the reader. I hadn’t done that intentionally – I just hadn’t told that story about myself yet. We may never tell some stories about ourselves – most definitely. It’s different with a book – you can be an unintentional unreliable narrator or you can do it purposefully if you’ve mastered the art.

Either way, it reminds me of all the arguments taking place on social media these days. Each person is set in their point of view and is not listening to yours. We don’t know everything about them and why they have their opinion and they don’t know everything about us and why we might feel the way we do.

My husband and I love to listen to Jazz and sip wine in the evenings. We also enjoy watching TV and movies set in the past – maybe because we’re both such history buffs.

So, in full disclosure after yesterday’s post about Nashville, today I’m thinking of going all retro, Jazzy, fully embracing my father’s era and the novel he loved so much, Letters on Balboa Island. Will my future books be set in the past? Any past in particular? Will my music become more Jazzy? I don’t know what this means, yet, but I’m excited to explore it.

LETTERS ON BALBOA ISLAND

“When I was seventeen, I knew two things that were true: (1) You couldn’t help but meet a man in a military uniform in southern California in the 1950s, and (2) Sooner or later, men would leave. ” – Rosalie

When Rosalie Martin chooses to spend her life with a military man in the post Korean War era of the 1950s, she can’t forget another she met during the war. And when letters surface on Balboa Island years later, she realizes she may have chosen the wrong man. So when fate offers her the chance to make a different choice, will she? Or has she lived a life of lies for too long?

AVAILABLE NOW on Amazon.com for Kindle and in Paperback.