The Masters, The Knuckle Ball and Writing It Down and Out

The last few days have been filled with marvelous metaphors. But then I love most metaphors. They help me see, really see what is unfolding and stirring around me in the days of breathing in and out. And after the metaphor has come and gone, I am left to  linger longer. I wrestle with thought. For I am a processor and  a bone-picker of words. I savor the salt, eat the marrow and the gristle. Hoping to find a  nutrient fiber for my soul. Pulling it off the bone piece by piece. Picking it clean.

I jumped on my bike yesterday. Took a fast ride and then a slow one on my turquoise and yellow cruiser. The child in me was peddling down the streets of this fishing village. My hair blew crazy as I rode through the puddles and dodged one or two cars. The town is small, the traffic barely exists. When you ride a bike on a cool spring day your mind gathers speed like a train leaving a small town. The all clear is given and suddenly you pick up some steam.

I caught a thought like I caught that purple wisteria fragrance, sweet and strong. Writers write the past to help with healing. And they write the now to process living. Before I picked up the pen, I was a volcano left for inactive. No one saw it coming. Least of all me. Until the words came, erupted even. And they were hot, flowing, and alive.

After I parked the bike I felt the wind and the blood. My heart beat faster. There was enough fresh air in my body to infuse a soul with green spring life. It was Sunday and that’s a good day for recounting a week and picking it apart. Checking back on the highs and lows like the game we played at dinner with our kids. We aren’t that original. The idea came from a movie about a marriage in crisis. We have been there too. We like the game and it works well to help five souls process a life.

Last week a woman I admire served me up some words that I digested for days. They tasted like the  bittersweet variety. And though I don’t know caster oil personally on my tongue, I know it’s good for you. It is good for you but tastes like the devil. And her words were a balm, a healing tonic. I needed to hear the gentle tough served up with a sugar cube chaser. The spoon hit the teeth and the tangy metal tasted pungent, but the truth was in the tonic.

She said, “I want to push you as a writer.” I blinked back hot and felt the investment of a talented writer cool me down. And I sat on this phrase for days.

He has a story that will break your heart in two if you have one. I sat frozen like a slab of red meat from the freezer hanging on his ebb and flow of words. Riding wave on wave of his life story being told, as it waxed and waned, crested and fell. Amazed by his life story. But the knuckle ball part left the biggest mark on my tender places. Bruising me with its strength.

After his struggles in baseball, he needed a game changer. So he upped his game and mastered the knuckle ball. And he has it perfected. No one can touch it or barely catch it. He stuck with his passion, stayed with it and pressed on and forward into the living of his dreams and love of the game. So I am looking for my knuckle ball, inspired by R.A. Dickey .

I want to hold the pen in my hand and release details, descriptions and a style of writing that screams it’s me, it’s me, its no one else. That throw, that grip, that certain way of sending the ball over the plate, its how I want to send my words out into the world.

And if Dickey’s story wasn’t enough to set the pen in my hand on fire, the story of The Masters this year and the sweet victory of an Australian propelled me out of my funk and into the fire.

The story is out there and I don’t need to tell a story that’s not my own, but winning in sports after dry spells and hard work are a perfect storm of inspiration. And so I hold these stories of victory, passion and accomplishment in my soft insides and let them knead the dough of my writing life. Press it, shape it, pound it and roll it out.

And I thank my friend who gave me a few words that could be life changing. She said some more that I am having a hard time chewing on. Sometimes good is hard to swallow. I am humbled by them mightly and I can’t stop chewing on the potential in them.

I want to go hop back on my turquoise bike and ride off into the wet April day and dream of where to go and how to get there. I want to go back to the healing and processing parts of writing. The place where I vowed to see it all, to not miss a speck of dust or dirt in the day. To see so clearly the dots and dashes of the days that I could count the webbing in a spider’s home and taste the tinny metal in a bronze statue.

To pick up details and fine points like scattered laundry across a house full of messy living. It is all to be picked up most of it used. The raw, the real, the rich details of the everyday. The simple, the comlex. The every last piece. Nothing left for dead. It all beats red with living.

And I need to count the folds, count the hairs and count the cost of dulled senses. Of the bland and milk-toast words on a page. I have to pump the crimson blood back into the veins on the page, the lines that thread through my words and give them life.

Thank you my friend. I feel the push. I am off to pedal slow on my turqouise bike with yellow flowers, rusty rims, and a Hershey chocolate brown-leather seat. I have a metal wire basket on the front. Some days it is the seat for my Papillon. And we are two butterflies flitting down the back roads. I am going to pick up life and put it there too. In a notebook.

Thanks for the push. I feel the hands of encouragement on my back. There is muscle on that hand and it is wrapped in tender flesh of love of work, hard,  Authentic. Rich. I feel the pulsing love of words, carried through the veins. There is fire in the belly. There is fire in the words. The knuckle ball is coming over the plate. Duck.

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joining Laura at Laura Boggess dot com for her Playdates At The Wellspring, Heather for Just Write and Jennifer for SDG

Have I Told You Lately That You Bless Me?

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Have I told you lately that you smooth  rough patches and make soft grooves of grace in my very soul?

Have I whispered lately that your words are balm and healing ointment on my aching head?

Have I breathed  gratitude and thankfulness over all the spoken, written, holy words that come from You and yours?

When I read the words of Yours and all the Saints who drip and drop the words of gentleness on an stirring soul, I have to stop and say,

Have I told you lately that you bless me?

Do you know the power of words so tender on the tough dry patches, where the world can wear a callous on the spirit of a child?

Where all the tears and rips need healing from your very lips, the words, a  salve on grooves left by salty tears?

Have I told you lately how your grace poured out, blesses in the crevices, running deep and staying there, a soothing sought after lather on the wound.

I will tell you often that you bless me.

And bury my soul in the words from your Holy mouth and listen gently with a tender heart to the words from all your Saints.

Can you hear me tell you that you bless me?

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Joining Jennifer, Duane, and Ann.

Really, One Word? From Me? Yes !

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I thought of a million reasons why I wouldn’t choose one word.

Actually, that’s not true.

I didn’t give it much thought at all.

But then… the idea sung to me sweetly and the word screamed loud and strong and wouldn’t stop.

Well yes I danced for awhile around the words that I want to shape me and shape my living this year. If I tell you my heart I bare my soul. If I bare my soul you see a seeking, wanting, hungry me.

If you see me there, that is where the real and the vulnerable are and didn’t I always want to live there, really?

I want to Praise more and Love more. I want to embrace possibility and potential. I want to be healed and whole. I want to enter in, not stay on the fringe in fear. I want to be brave and make new friends and serve God. In everything.

Simply, I want an abundant life. Serving and loving and living out of a place of extravagant possibility.

I long for poetry, lots of poetry. And I want to dare to sharpen the eyes of my soul to see beauty, all beauty. The beautiful in everything.

And the word was set on repeat, washing away in the inner chambers. Though I really had no plans or desire to wrap a year of living around a word.

But it focuses my soul. And I fell in love. And it felt like a calling. So I opened the door, well cracked it really. And in came the rush and excitement of  art.

The colors, the sounds, the whimsy, the creativity, the nuance and the wonder.

And when I framed the desires and callings on my spirit it looked and felt and sounded like this, to my soul.

I want to know the art of worship and the art of praise, anew.

My soul longs to experience the art of loving and serving those in my world, my family and community. The friends I have not even met.

I want to seek and find the art of seeing  beauty around me, catching the moment at just the right time, when the light hits just so and the smile turns up on a face in that oh so subtle  way.

I am longing to see with my camera, the art of capturing life and living and creation, anew.

With art as my frame of living, my frame of reference, my hope is that I will be challenged to live fully and abundantly in all that I do. Without fear, without anxiety, without settling for just so.

Wrapping a year of days with art as the rudder, my hope is to encounter all not half. Full not empty. Strong, not weak. Brave not timid.

Embracing the art of abundant living through reconciliation, healing, forgiveness and embracing this one life.

Will you join me as I eat my words and choose one word?

Will you walk through a year of poetry and prose, photography and faith, with me. Looking to the Ultimate Creative, Artist God, all the while.

You make the art of my life so much richer.

Off to the land of artful living; dancing, singing, all the way there. Won’t you come along? Shaking the dust off as we go. Cleansing and washing our days in new.

These words of Pablo Picasso sing it all so sweet and true:

Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life

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Linking with the one word community.

The Final One – Grace, God,and What’s Next

Today is Day 31. It’s the end. It’s the beginning. The collective is here for the unwrapping.

Chapter One

Thank you for walking out October with me. Or just joining me today. Its Grace that you do.

The words. They have been stirred up and scrambled a bit. These words our tools.

And they have been fragile, tender, chosen with some care. Delicate the words. And each a shade of different.

As prayers, worshipers, delighters, praisers, writers, poets, bloggers, mommies.

It is  our words. They are our tools.

To pray to our God, to worship our God, to raise our children, to sing our songs, and lift our voices.

They lift up, they give voice, and they give Hope.

When I began I started this series walking out a plan to write daily. You can reflect with me on my dailiness. here. (Or lack thereof, or good intent, or best laid plans).

What grace it is to write at all. If writing is your passion. What grace it is to write and meet a friend along the way.

What is this writing journey but a step and a step and another. To touch a soul with a phrase or a word. To write of life and have another lean in soft or lean in hard and say I understand or better, so much better that speaks to me and it is sweet. And it is tender.

Your eyes here with me are a gift. He brings them to the page.

Your heart beats, steps in stride with me, walking it out with me. Gift.

And all these words that have been and words to come, are reflecting, praising, processing, speaking, telling, of this life He gives. And to Him glory.

Of the Grace He gives, and its delightful amazing.

Of the Hope that’s in Him and its radiant.

May He be the audience of one for whom we write the words of our life.

To serve Him, praise Him, seek Him, and abide in Him.

Chapter Two

Once upon a time there was a blogger who found a hope-filled community of writing friends along her way.
And it is good.  And it was very very good. And it is great and safe and a wonderful delightful place.  And there were the  words woven, words shared, words prayed, and words passed like the peace in love, back and forth, from and to. And a life was richer because of the words. Shared.

And stories were written, life was written, and bumps and bruises were written out, and fears released, and hope captured, and God praised.

And she thanked her God for the words , for  breathing through them. For bridges built with them, to others and to her Gift Giver. For Joy found in them. Each one full and rich, like figs picked from the tree,  placed on the lips to delight and consume.

And there was Grace, abundant and amazing. Grace when time was multiplied, time was hard, times were filled with questions and seeking.

And there was Grace, abundant in the extending of words, out. Releasing them. Freeing them. Sending them out, to go and tell.

Out into the bloggy world.

This very imperfect prosety. These very flawed proems.

The voice that trembles, seeks to be and form and speak.

He gives another day to pick it up and form the words. To build community and simply sing a song. To tell of Him and His amazing Grace.

Another Day. A gift.

Its Grace.

And I am writing of those moments, when Grace has appeared, wrapped in Love, dipped in Love, signed in the wet ink of Mercy.

The eyes of the heart record and tell. And thank. And the words keep marching out, prancing out, dancing out, this narrative, this story, of this one wonderful life.

The one He so graciously gives.

Chapter Three

What’s next?

Surprises. Trust. Expectancy. The beautiful. The wonder. The very very ordinary.

And the leaning in and bending the ear to Him, for words and inspiration.

Thank you for reading, journeying and always encouraging.

As a thank you I am giving away a piece of wonderful jewelry from Tracey Anderson Cooper, a friend. Just leave a comment to be entered. It can be a word. (These are examples of her line,.I will choose a piece in stock. It will be lovely, truly.)

{And when you leave a comment or a word, would you consider your own little dream of what would be next, here. Your own little wish of what you would want to read here. If you do. If you shall. An idea, a thought. Its Gift that you would.}

Are you journeying daily, here. Humbled if you would. Be here daily, just me and you and the words. Click here to receive daily emails and join this community of words.

Joining Duane, Emily, Ann, Mary Beth, and Jennifer.