Archive for category Poetry
I’ve started writing again. Not just here (after a four-year hiatus!) but also I’ve picked up a little fantasy story I wrote some years ago, reread it, and loved it so much I decided to expand it. I want to know more about these people. More about how their relationships developed and the world in which they live. I want to know what happens next!
This has been a great start to 2019. Last year wasn’t actually that great. It certainly had some highlights (mostly family events) but it also had some of the severest challenges I’ve ever faced. But today… well, my kids noticed the difference. Their grumpy and mostly morose dad was outgoing again. I enjoyed myself at a party with friends. When it was time to sit down and write again, I actually had to stand up first and jump up and down with excitement. Literally. Jump. Up. And. Down. Repeatedly.
I’m teasing myself right now, by writing this before I return to my unfolding cast of characters. Oh, the anticipation! Not only do I get to find out more about them, not only do I get to see them responding to new challenges and situations, not only do I see them grow and change and develop in all sorts of ways, but I get to make it all happen!!!!
Besides being an occasional writer, I’m a bit of a computer game player. I like games with a ‘world creation’ aspect to them, or a strong element of story-telling. I can spend hours playing in Minecraft, or journeying in Skyrim. But you know what? I get all those thrills and more when I tell the story myself. When I build the story out of my very own words.
JRR Tolkien has always fascinated me, because of his talent for world creation, but it wasn’t until a little over a decade ago, when I wrote my masters thesis on his theological thought, that I was able to listen to what he had to say about the business of fantasy writing. He believed firmly that the writing of fantasy stories was a deeply godly endeavor and that it provided for the human soul in several different ways; read his essay “On Fairy Stories” for all the detail. But one point I want to make here; he believed that we are creators of alternate worlds because we are made in the image of the maker. We can’t help but want to create worlds since the world-creator made us to be like Himself – and in fact calls us to join with him in the business of creating, sustaining, and redeeming the world in every possible way.
And you know what? Picking up a pen (or opening a word-processor document) might just be one way of doing that.
Good news for the creative soul!
Grey Bird steadfastly
strokes cold air, climbs past the moon
hard white in fading blue.
strikes through chill evening, moon
harsh in dying day.
your four limbs stretched against the timbers your
head hanging loose your
clothes gambled away and your
pouring like water from the gash between the worlds
that spear thrust
that pierced a universe.
Rolling thunder is too mild a cadenza
for this enormity.
God is dead
now what can we do?
Golden poplars blaze against evergreen hills;
imagine your hand reaching out to touch the soft, warm fur of your sleeping puppy
imagine the nice feelings
the sense of tenderness
even of love
that goes with that touch,
you stroke your puppy
and rub the back of its neck
and then your fingers slide around the puppy’s neck
and you don’t seem to have any control of your hand
and your fingers close on your pet’s neck
and slowly tighten.
and try to release the puppy
but you can’t
and your fingers press deeper into its coat
and the puppy wakes up
and now you’re struggling to let go
but your grip just gets tighter
and the puppy realises too late that something is wrong
and begins to whine
and try to get away
but you hold on
and now the puppy is scrabbling for freedom
and its claws dig into your flesh
and rip your wrists
but you can’t let go
and you can feel your thumb closing its throat
and its struggles get weaker
and you’re bleeding
and the pain is intense
but you can’t let go
and all the time you’re watching this happening
and you have no control
and you can’t let go
and you hate yourself
and you hate the puppy
because you loved it
and now you’ve killed it
and you can’t let go.
Addiction kills everything you love and rips you to pieces and you can’t let go.