Remember how we forgot?

Poetry should please by a fine excess and not by singularity. It should strike the reader as a wording of his own highest thoughts, and appear almost as a remembrance. -John Keats

So I was up late the other night, like 1 or 2 in the morning or so. Even though I knew that I should be sleeping already I just enjoy staying up late. I like finding new stuff like the video above for instance. I was browsing facebook, seeing if there was anything interesting someone had posted. Not just "had a great turkey sandwich for lunch" or "fml" but something to slightly enrich my existence. So I saw a post by a friend that I know through my cousin, and who also volunteers at a summer camp with me. She said "This is true poetry." And just like that my curiosity was piqued. I read on, she said considering all the crap you're scrolling through on facebook it's worth it, take a few minutes and watch it.

I can't tell you how glad I am that I clicked it. I feel as if that video has shifted my path in life. Not necessarily externally (although I hope it does), but internally this video as well as his other work is inspiring me in ways I haven't felt in quite some time, since I actually believed in God and would get similar feelings in church.

After watching the video, once the goosebumps subsided, I began searching ravenously for all I could find that this man, Shane Koyczan had ever done. Minutes into my search I purchased an ebook of his poems. As cheap as I am, if I buy something rather than trying to find a free copy somewhere it is something very special to me. I felt the 8 bucks or so was well worth the impact that he had had on me already. I just wished I could throw more money at him. Eventually I know I will buy more of his stuff.

What I think affects me so much, besides of course his immense talent at the use of words to make you feel things, was that he reminded me what I loved so much about the time when I was writing poetry. The raw passion that can be put into a poem, once you stop caring so much about formalities and just make something that comes from deep inside you, something you have to say even if no one ever truly hears it. He made me remember that trying is what's important, and not just that wimpy "trying" where you say oh well I tried in order to excuse yourself for giving up. Trying in the sense of pursuing your dreams in a relentless pursuit where the only way your giving up is when they stick you in the ground or burn your remains to spread in the ocean. Waking up every damn day and saying, "Today I will do better than yesterday." I will never be perfect, I will never have it all figured out, but I'm not sitting around waiting just because I don't have all the answers. I'm going to shine, to do what I am passionate about. To chase the dreams that make my heart race when I think of them. My only hope is that watching the video can have at least a fraction of the impact it has had on me. Because I feel different. I feel more hopeful, I feel less afraid.

I am passionate about sharing ideas, and sharing them in such a way that no one has quite heard before. Each moment of our seemingly ordinary existence is filled with such weight, if only because it is transient and will never come back around again. Each moment is a beat in a giant symphony composed by the universe that it plays for itself.

Today, find your "instrument" and join in the chorus.


I Need to Start Drawing Again...

So, Ender's Game comes out this Friday. I am so excited to go see it. I usually don't go to the movies if I can help it. I'd rather just wait for the movie to come out on DVD. But with this one, since I have waited so long for it I am going to make an exception.

This Friday also marks the first day of NaNoWriMo. I am hopeful that I will be able to stick with it this year. It doesn't matter to me if I get to the end and the novel is really rough or even total crap. To me, if I can set the goal of 50,000 words in one month, and follow through with it, it will be a huge deal to me regardless of the quality of my first draft.

I don't have a lot of content for this post, but I did want to share some pictures. Another of my hobbies that I really enjoy is drawing. Unfortunately, as with writing I have been out of the habit for quite some time. It really bugs me because I look back at these drawings and remember how much I loved it, and how much progress I made in a short time. Then I start thinking that like muscles that atrophy without exercise, my drawing "muscle" may be pretty weak at this point. My hope is that sharing these, and possibly getting some feedback may give me a push to start drawing again.


16 Days Without a Government

“Yeah It’s gonna be a sunny day today” dad said as he walked out of the living room.

It’s morning, 9:35 am on Thursday. I work at the library today. It’s that wonderful time of year when it’s cool out and stays that way most of the day. I am excited about the changes I am making. Despite the fact that I have tried before I am not going to give up despite failing. 

The government apparently made a deal to reopen today, big whoop. Forgive me if I just don’t care about the government. It hurts my brain to think of how incompetent and corrupt they are. 

Woke up yesterday to hearing my uncle Robby in the house talking to my dad. Apparently he had gotten a cab to our house, not knowing the situation at his house. We had been worried about him for a couple days after finding he went to jail. Erika, his girlfriend, apparently called the police after he choked her and threw her against the wall. He was then awoken from sleep to cops in his house, pointing tasers at him and yelling at him not to move. He shared a lot of stories with us about his time in jail. He said that what happened was his fault. She had tried to get him to stop drinking, saying that he’d had enough. But he wouldn’t listen and got very angry. He was remorseful, but in a way seemed grateful for the wake-up call. He is 50 years old and has kept living like he’s in his 20′s. He spent most nights/weekends in bars, and drank entirely too much for one person. He will be on probation for 4 years, since what he was charged with was a third degree felony. I feel bad for him. I wish he could have had an epiphany about changing his lifestyle without having to go to jail and go through all the stuff that comes with that. Robin and Rachel, my cousins, showed up with his truck and hung out for awhile.

My legs are extremely sore, I can only assume from being on my feet more at the new job. Speaking of the new job, I am loving it so far. It’s exciting to be doing new things. I am excited to see the store grow and to be a part of it as it grows. Plus it’s cool to have access to stuff that conveniently and I get a great discount.

I feel hopeful. I want to shift my focus, shift my thinking. I want to choose to do things, rather than succumb to inertia to guide my day. It is going to be a process, but I am committed to it. It will involve me actively being aware each moment of my motivation for what I’m doing. Am I doing it just to do it, or because it’s what I usually do? Or am I doing it because I truly want to do it?

Tim can’t sweat out of one armpit because of the radiation he had for his cancer, how weird is that. I will miss hanging out with him and talking with him at work. We are both at the point where we want to move on. Maybe I can make a point to get together with him from time to time.


A New Beginning...

You know what one of the most glorious things about life is?

It's the fact that as long as you are still alive, you always have the option of a new beginning. This can be in regards to anything. It could be your career, your hobbies, your "style", or even your dormant blog that is gathering dust. Each and every day you have the opportunity to begin again. In a world where the majority of us are unhappy with some aspect of our lives, this is great news. We can be actively involved in reshaping our future. But we must make the choice, and to choose, we must first believe that we have some influence over how our lives turn out.

I have been in quite the rut these days, for several years it seems. Working the same part-time job, the same drive to and from said job, the same daily routine of lounging around doing random things until it's time to go into work, then lounging around after work doing random things. I have lacked a clear and defined purpose for quite some time. Before it was finish my degree in math, and then go from there. But when I changed my mind and took some time off from school, I fell into the trap of being comfortable. And over time it has gotten more and more difficult to think about overcoming my fear of change. But the good news is I am taking steps. This post is one of those steps. I have been putting off my first new post for too long, thinking I needed to have some kind of epic post to make a comeback with. But I realized that this is one of those faulty ways of thinking that has destroyed my creative process for too long. The idea that before putting anything on paper or writing anything I need to have a clearly defined image or plan of what I want to write and then I can start.

I've learned by reading the advice of a bunch of other writers that the only way to make something better is to get the crappy version down on paper first. Commit it to ink or pixels on a screen. At least then it is something physical that can be revised and perfected. An idea cannot truly be reworked until it is written, as much as you think you can do it all in your head. There is a power in getting everything about an idea out, and then tweaking what you have, removing unnecessary things, and revising for clarity.

My new beginning started last week. I set a very modest goal for myself of committing to writing 500 words a day. I set it low at first to encourage me to do it, since 500 words can be pounded out very quickly. I won't say I haven't missed a day or two since I started but I don't sweat it. I just try again the next day. I can't tell you how much I have enjoyed those little sessions, usually in the morning with coffee. It reminds me of the joy I used to find in writing. It reminds me of the passion I used to feel. I want to recapture that passion and watch it grow.

That is why I have also committed to doing NaNoWriMo this year, aka National Novel Writing Month. This is an event where writers from all over come together during November and share the journey of writing a novel in 30 days. 50,000 words in 30 days, or roughly 1667 words a day. Only about 3 times what I initially set for myself, which I feel is totally doable if I work up to it. I have also been following through a 30 day preparation challenge that goes throughout October in order to be better prepared than I was the last two years.

I also started another new beginning recently. I got a second part time job that I start on Saturday, and I'm really excited. I'm hoping to gain some experience, get a little extra cash, and overall just try something totally different to get out of my comfort zone. It's a job working in a retail e-cigarette location. I am really excited about it because it is something I know a lot about since I've been using an e-cigarette for about 4 months now.

So new beginnings all around for me, new blog post after a few years, new commitment to honing my writing talent, and a new job. I am ready to challenge myself, and force myself to grow as a person. It's been far too long that I have been stagnant and resistant to change. I'm ready for something new.  Drop me a comment to keep me motivated to stay active here. Honestly, my favorite part of blogging was always reading the comments from you guys/gals out there. Until next time, what new beginning are you going to embark on today?