Monday, February 21, 2011

Writer's First Aid -- A Medicine Chest of Hope

I came across a new blog for me. Writer's First Aid Kristi Holl is an author of several books and I've found many of her posts to be fabulous. Especially the ones on:

The Dynamics of Change
Stage 1: Making Up Your Mind
Stage 2: Committing to Change
Stage 3: Taking Action
Stage 4: Maintaining Long-Term Success

Some things do happen for a reason. And often when you need it though you might not recognize it right away. I've been having a serious lack of concentration and daily distractions that have been more interesting then sitting here writing. For a writer that signals a problem. I've come up all sorts of reasons and so forth and most of them are true. However, there is a real human reason for it. I need to make changes and get back on track. So, I've taken the first step and that's to see how other's handle distractions and try to glean from their experience and wisdom.

This morning, I had intended to get up and write, nothing else. I'm distracted with wedding stuff. Gathering information and looking at dresses, places to have rehersal dinners. Saturday night, my second son officially proposed to his girlfriend - he'd already indicated to us a few months ago that he wanted to marry her this year. Last night, my third son informed me that he and his fiancee decided to get married this July instead of July next year to be sure her grandfather will be able to do their ceremony. His wife passed a few months ago and he's now having to sell their home due to being able to do the upkeep himself.

Too many distractions. So, I did a search for distractions for writers and First Aid was the first one that came up. I enjoyed reading these posts. I love how she lays out the process of setting your mind before you attempt to make the changes. It makes sense. You wouldn't set out on a long run without stretching your muscles and mapping out your trek. And frankly as writer's I think we do just that. We do things out of order and it catches up with us. Writers first sit down and write before knowing how it's supposed to be done and they we spend so much time back peddling and playing catch-up.

Kristi has so many good posts to read, they in themselves can be a distraction. So, maybe, I'll make it a goal to read of them every day. They are so uplifting.

Check out her blog when you feel a moment of 'distraction'. I don't think there's topic she doesn't cover.


Monday, February 14, 2011

My Love Is Both a Hunger and a Giving - Happy Valentine's Day

My love is both a hunger and a giving,
A need to have and also to bestow,
A lavish lust for flesh and yet a yearning
For beauty as austere as polished stone.
I want more than my life your happiness,
And yet my happiness depends on you.
Like a child I linger in your shadow
While like a parent I take you in my arms.

I want to be the sun to fill your sky
While like a rose I open to your smile.
I want to be the air you breathe, your music,
While like the sand I wait upon your sea.

So like and unlike, my love is doubly bonded,
The joys of giving and receiving joined.
This day of love it is my gift to you,
A heart you can consume yet keep forever.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Charles d'Orleans, The Romantic Duke

By: Stephanie Burkhart

One of the earliest Valentine's ever wrote for which we still have a record of was by the Duke of Orléans, Charles Valois. His story is one that touches my heart and his poetry is very moving.

Charles was born in Paris in November 1394 and became the Duke when his father, Louis, was murdered on the orders of John, Duke of Burgundy, a rival nobleman.

Charles is best remembered as a poet, writing over 500 poems. Most of these were written when he was a prisoner of war.

Charles was 14 when his father passed and he became the Duke. He was young and impressionable, and fell under his father-in-law's influence, the Count of Armagnac.

Charles's first wife was Isabella of Valois (a daughter of French King Charles VI) He loved her dearly, but she died in childbirth. In 1410, he married Bonnie d'Armagnac, Count d'Armagnac's daughter.

In 1415, Charles was taken a prisoner of war in the Battle of Agincourt. He was 21. Henry V of England took him to the Tower of London were Charles composed most of his poetry. Charles was in captivity for over 24 years (he was in the line for the French throne and England didn't want to give him up.) With nothing better to do, Charles wrote.

Most of his poetry was for his wife, Bonnie, but she died before he was released. He was let out in 1440 at the age of 46 and married a third time. His son from his third marriage, became Louis XII. His poems are mostly French Rondeaus, a two line rhythm and are usually about love and the spring time.

Charles's Valentine in the original French:

Je suis desja d'amour tanné,
Ma tres doulce Valentinée

Rondeau VI, lines 1-2.

Here's another of Charles' poem in English:

(To his Mistress, to succor his heart that is beleaguered by jealousy)

Strengthen, my Love, this castle of my heart,
And with some store of pleasure give me aid,
For Jealousy, with all them of his part,
Strong siege about the weary tower has laid.

Nay, if to break his bands thou art afraid,
Too weak to make his cruel force depart,
Strengthen at least this castle of my heart,
And with some store of pleasure give me aid.

Nay, let not Jealousy, for all his art
Be master, and the tower in ruin laid,
That still, ah Love! Thy gracious rule obeyed.

Advance, and give me succor of they part;
Strengthen, my Love, this castle of my heart.

Enjoy your Valentine's Day weekend!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Pledging My Love - A Special Pre-Valentine

Tonight my husband surprised me. And with Valentine's Day a few days away, I thought I'd share it.

We were sitting around with Jesse and Kara sharing videos. I had found some of people we once listened to, but haven't thought about in a while. So, after a while, my husband played a song by Conway Twitty, then went on to play the same song by three other people. I was still on Conway - I never knew he sang this song. Well, with this music being before the kid's time, they went to play video games with Jeff. Once they left the room, my husband told me he recalls Elvis singing this song in a movie and told me what he was wearing. He couldn't recall which movie. I did a quick search and found a video of the song. Only Elvis wasn't singing the song, nor was it a movie. It was television series where this guy played elvis and lip-sinked to Ronnie McDowell singing the song. That was what he remembered. Elvis did sing the song, but not until 1977 and only on an album, from what we could find out. So, then he looks at me and tells me that the first time he heard this song, he dedicated it to me.

On Youtube we found a video with Conway singing the song which makes it even more speical for me. Conway is my all time favorite country singer and I miss him terribly. And in this video I learned there is an album I don't have which contains this song. We thought I owned every thing he ever did. So, I pulled the lyrics up from my favorite lyrice site - House of Lyrics.


Forever my darling
My love will be true
Always and forever
I'll love only you.

Just promise me darling
May this fire in my soul, dear
Your love in return

Forever burn.
My heart's at your command, dear
To keep, love and to hold
Making you happy's is my desire dear

Keeping you is my goal.
For the rest of my days
I'll never part from you
I'll Forever love you
Or your loving ways.

--- Instrumental ---

Yeah, Making you happy's is my desire dear
To keep, love and to hold.)

(My heart's at your command, dear
Keeping you is my goal.
I'll Forever love you
For the rest of my days
I�ll never part from you

Or your loving ways.
Always and forever
--- Instrumental ---
I'll love only you...

(Words & music by Robey - Washington)

I'm so mushy and sentimental. And so very lucky to have a man who thinks so much of me.