Wednesday, June 26, 2013

About Face

If you are curious why I have a bannister on my header-it is from the Southern Hotel.  Ghosts from the past have found a way to communicate with me through poetry.  I'm not kidding-check out this post over in the Imaginary Garden!  It is still happening-a quote from Robert Frost in a yoga book yesterday.  I almost dropped my iPad.  Yes, Robert Frost is following me.

"The best way out is always through."-Robert Frost

Orville n' Wilbur Wright and maybe Robert Frost went up and down these stairs!

Peggy challenged us to write a poem-About Face.  Laura the owner of Pasquotank Trading Company, one shop in the the hotel, helped my daughter channel Audrey Hepburn.  Thank you Laura, it was so fun! 

It was kind of odd behind the camera.  My daughter doesn't normally act this way, when I take her photos.   I think it was the high heels, hat, and gloves or maybe the scenery inspired her.  She started tilting her head and becoming someone else.  The owner was impressed-it was kinda fun, yet spooky, but definitely more fun.


Portal opens
scented whispers linger
like shadows 
rippled in translucent light
perfumed lilies waif through
former lobby

faded pearls n' dust
decorate family tree
dewy peach skin 
outlined charcoal doe eyes
geometry graces
blushed apple smile
dimpled thoughts wink

doorway of souls
float in bleached white memories
silver feathers glide
caressing memories
appear in hands, tilt of head and smile
elfin manner transformed

every quarter hour
clock chimes
their archived
map lives on
lyrical notes referenced
in golden floral notes. 

© Ellen Wilson

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Corey's Challenge

Corey gave us the challenge to write a poem inspired by radio DJ-Chris on the hit TV show, Northern Exposure. In the pursuit of profound thought- I am challenging a Chris in the Morning on KBHR  inspired poem!   Chris was played by actor John Corbett.

The very purpose of our life is happiness, the very motion of our life is toward happiness."   The Dalai Lama

How did fruit become associated with happiness?!  
Life is a peach, apple of my eye, bear fruit and multiply and then the author Sark reminds us to live juicy!   When did happiness correlate with fruit?   Yes, the search for sweetness ensues, yet we have to have some bitter, so we can enjoy the sweet.

"Let us be grateful to people who make us happy, they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom."     Marcel Proust 

So, we now know happy equates with  fruit and gardening.  Dig deep to unearth your roots and see what grows?  Ok maybe...
but we do have to search and gather daisies, our thorns and roses?!

Maybe the chase is more kite driven. Remember your first attempt flying your homemade or store bought kite. The tangle of string, while your dad, mom, or big brother showed you how it is done.  They cheered you on-because  you have to do it yourself!   We try, try, and try again to soar in the big blue sky.  We stumble, get eaten by a tree, and rip, maybe we have a Ben Franklin moment and we get struck by lightening!    Are you thinking dumb luck...nah, think again!  The key Ben held was potential.  The potential to try, to experiment, and to play-to exhaust yourself with your passion!  The dizzy dance of search and wonder!  

*a photo I took on Instagram

                     Gather daisies, thorns and roses
thread them on life's string
dizzy dance for blue
search the starlight
it whispers 
do you listen?
make a wish or 
create one
bitter pill swallows pride
don't let it
search life's
rain and rainbows
for your gift, your key:
birthright to hold bliss
to dig deep and
plant your gray matter
it will grow
time plays its own tune
you carry it with you always

© Ellen Wilson

Each day we have a chance to find our happy...
Go find yours!   It is your birth right?!
They tell us this on the day we are born, Happy Birthday!  Smile when you blow out your candles and go fly that kite!

Monday, June 17, 2013

Sew Somerset

Sorry, I have been quiet.  I am starting to feel better.  Doc says I am hyper, right now.  My meds have been changed and I am on the lowest dose in years?!   I kinda wonder if it is the seaweed I have been eating?!   If you are curious about your thyroid you can visit this site and even take a quiz to see if you have symptoms.  My grandmother had to have a goiter surgically removed.   It was before I was born, but I remember she had a scar and her eyes were always bulging out. My mom reminded me of this-my grandmother  had eaten too much seafood.  I know sounds crazy doesn't it?! No, this isn't my problem-darn it!  Back in the day, when my dad was a teen-he use to trap Lobsters and dig for clams.  They ate a lot of seafood-Lobster was once considered poor man's food.  Diet really does affect the way we feel...

My daughter and her boyfriend are headed to the Outer Banks today-I so want to go, but I have a deadline regarding some art.   And I wouldn't want to cramp their style.  Have you been to the beach, yet? 

I was fortunate to have my Burlap Beach Pouch published in the current issue of Sew Somerset!  Thank you to Jennifer Jackson Taylor and staff! Jennifer reminds us in her Letter From The Editor, "When is the last time you challenged yourself to create something out of your comfort zone?"  For me just recently and I mailed it to GreenCraft-here is a peek!

 I know you are thinking what is it?   It is for my daughter and it holds gift cards. I didn't have any to her favorite shops, so I tucked in a Starbucks one.  Yes, that is Audrey Hepburn!

I made a beach like pouch.  It is a placemat-burlap like fabric. I folded and stitched it together.  Then using my curtain technique I printed an image of a vintage photo.  This photo reminds me of the calm I feel sitting and watching the waves roll in, when I am at the shore.  I love to walk and look for treasure. Sometimes treasure arrives in ideas, words, and memories, not just in tiny bits of frosted sea glass.  I love to find the turquoise glass.  I love how smooth the sea has tumbled them.  I am always delighted when I see the light dance like jewels on the sand and pools of water.  My kids loved to find tiny crabs in puddles of wonder.  Me, I love to find sand dollars and tiny  shells.  I like how listening to the sea waves matches the rhythm of my heart and how the salty brine seem to make the ideas flow.  There is a sense of calm, even if it is crowded.  I tend to think of being in the eye of the storm.  All around me loud, busy fun, yet I can still find peace and a sense of well being.  I am trying to learn to do this in my every day world.   I use to be alone a lot, now not so much anymore.  Yogi, Baron Baptiste talks about it-Tadasana.

      He mentions how yoga helps with balance, not just in conquering the poses, but inside it helps train you to remain calm and observe the storm around you.  We all have our own storms-but remember there is plenty of wonder, too!  Now I can't get that Doors song out of my head!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Buried Treasure

The talented Seth Apter suggested we blog about buried treasure-the blogging kind!

Seth four years ago started an annual treasure hunt.  Buried Treasure is about finding some hidden gems.  The premise is simple. On Wednesday, June 12th all participating bloggers will re-post one (or more) of their favorite posts that ever appeared on their blog.  Seth said it best,"anything goes"-he is an artist, author and amazing spirit! 
I  think jars are so versatile.  I have many filled with buttons, vintage flowers, old fashion clothes pins, all kinds of odds n' ends, even glue sticks. 

Kerry did a Firefly jar challenge over in the Garden and I thought about creating my own jar. It was also around the time this blog had a challenge.  The challenge was to create an unique jar and submit photos, with a chance to have your photo published.  I didn't enter, I was in the middle of a few other challenges.


Kerry explained her jar, for us:

  "Some may even recognize their writing in my jar, because it is crammed with extracts of poems and prose which have struck me as having the power to shine in the dark."

Words, poetry, and art in all forms provide light on our path!

I also thought of Dezzy!  When I shared a Forsythia photo, Dezzy told me another name for this plant.  He said, where he is from it is called Golden Rain~  I loved this name! Thank you Kerry n' Dezzy you both inspired my jar!

I am reading a book now called:  The Van Gogh Blues by Eric Maisel 
I want to share some thoughts from the book, so far.  I have only read an excerpt.

He talks about artists, "We embrace a life of solitude in order to embrace our creativity."  Some of us:  " outside the mainstream of life and struggle endlessly to survive both emotionally and financially.  And we wonder why do we do this thing that causes so much pain and also joy."    I hope it isn't like this for you...

Some of my  family would love me to give up, be their definition of normal.  The house would be neater, but it would be just a band-aid for me.

His words here say much of what I feel:

"For an artist, it is a driven pursuit, whether we acknowledge this or not, that endless search for meaning....   That is why I think that the attempt always feels, so important, for the answers we encounter are only partial and not always clear.  .... Yet, at its very best, one work of art, whether produced by oneself or another, offers a sense of possibility that flames the mind and the spirit, and in that moment we know this is a life worth pursuing, a struggle that offers the possibility of answers as well as meaning."

 Artist are always looking for meaning!   The authors says not everyone is like this, but creative types are!     I guess I am always looking for the golden thoughts in the rain~

I had to include these!  It is hard to pick favorites:

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

The Dance

I haven't been feeling so well-I go to the doctor today.  I'm nervous-my doctor blackmails me.  Oh, yes she does.  She won't give me my refills if I don't get this or that tested-ick!  I'm too hot-kids laugh and say "hot flash"-no that isn't it.   I ask everyone is it hot in here-everyone says, "No"- I feel like a snowman shoved into a greenhouse.   I have other symptoms that suggest I am too fast.  Hubby does call me Turbo-lol.  I think my thyroid has decided to be hyper.  Why can't I have this extra heat in the winter, not now with 94% high humidity!  Augh...

I was downtown last week and thought of all of you!  Do you do this?  You see a person in line or shopping and wonder do they blog?  Do you see people that remind you of people online-kind and open!   I first went to Muddy's-they have the best sugar free Frappes. My daughter had a Liquid Brownie and I bought a Sugar-free Mocha.  This place has a European feel-you would love it and they even have Red Velvet coffee.  But I had another destination in mind. I took my daughter to a local shop that would transport us back in time.

Black n' white marble floors, antiques and grand doors fragments of history reside now in this shop, inside the former Southern Hotel.   There is even a baby Grand piano~

Supposedly there is a ball room on the 4th floor. We saw where the service elevator had been and the back entrance-the glass doors and the original counter for checking in-a marble slab.  Stories are tucked in every corner.  If your creativity is  blocked go visit a museum or antique store.  I swear you will find inspiration-whispers from the past.   I plan on going back this week and taking photos.  I dropped off some art-she wanted three pieces.  This place has a Gatsby feel, with fringes of the 30s, 40s and 50s.  There was even a tiny room that looked like Hemingway's writing nook, in Key West.  I was beyond enchanted.  My daughter wanted to move in!  The owners,  Laura and Chloe were gracious and charmed us with southern hospitality.  Chloe is a chatty bird-no really Chloe is a parrot.  She whistles and talks-she reminded me of my mom's cockatiel.   She had a cockateil-she named him Aussie.  Aussie livened up everyone's mood-wolf whistling, barking, and saying "I love you"-so fun!  Yes, the bird barked-my mom had a poodle.

*Not my photo...but see the columns inside, this is the lobby of the former hotel!  It is rearranged differently now.    Supposedly Orville and Wilbur Wright stayed here before heading to Kitty Hawk~   There is a plaque in town about them!   Fun to go back in time and see what is in your area-a lot of stories steeped in local history ;D   What is it like in your neck of the woods?!   (Does that sounds like Al Roker?-lol)

Wednesday, June 5, 2013


Over in the Garden, Kerry asked us to write a Nocturne.  A Nocturne
is usually a musical composition that is inspired by, or evocative of, the night. Nocturnes are generally thought of as being tranquil, often expressive and lyrical, and sometimes rather gloomy.  They can express a variety of moods.

Yundi Li plays Chopin, who is an acclaimed composer of Nocturnes.  I am sure this song will be familiar to you:

Our challenge is to write a poetic Nocturne. Though no such guidelines exist, Kerry set out a few suggestions:

  • The poem should be lyrical rather than narrative.
  • The primary intention should be to create mood and atmosphere, with the focus on what is felt rather than understood.
  • There must be a clear link to the night hours in a setting of your choice. In addition, content may focus on a religious theme, if preferred. 
  • You may choose any style which seems appropriate, either form or free verse.

I dip my brush 
and swirl moon's pale milky light
its opalescence pools n' puddles
across a sea of black roses
winged light shimmers
as God's eye fully opens
winking at me
silver liquid lashes 
 I dip my brush in mauve and blue
now morning lotus fully blooms
her radiant petals taper and soar
I swirl my paint brush into 
 the wings of the phoenix

        © Ellen Wilson