Sonny was a Pekinese with a Lion’s heart inside a tiny ball of fur.
And my friend.
Sonny was our family dog when I was a child. He sat with me in the dark, nibbled on my fingers and licked away my tears. He chased away rats and ghosts. He loved unconditionally. He couldn’t’ abide stupidity. And would bite whomever I told him to.
This past October I was sitting at a red light, near my doctor’s office, which I had just left. When our car was rear-ended. I was told by the police officer my car was drivable. It wasn’t. Oh, I made it home all right. Then it fell apart like a cartoon character. It was declared totalled by my insurance company, the frame looked like and accordion. I was told we were lucky.
Lots of pain, lots more physical troubles. Our savings for taxes went into the buying a used, 100,000-mile new car, new to us car.
I tend to growl a lot like my American shorthair cat, Sanosuki. We call him Sano or Suki, he grumbles and hides in the closet. If he would let me I would be in there with him.
I hope that all of you are well, happy- alive and breathing. Please put down your cell phones when you drive. Turn the insane things off. Notice the cars around you. Watch the trees, animals, people and all the fun things you will miss by being electronically connected. Check out the odd things people do in their cars when they think no one is watching.
This morning I decided to feed the birds off the deck, right outside the kitchen doors. There was one major problem. The ice, rain, sleet, snow that fell on December 30…froze solid. I couldn’t open the door.
No, problem, right. I pulled on my boots, heavy coat, hat, gloves and muffler and walked outside like some two-year-old, stuck under a mountain of clothes. I was barely able to move my arms. I had the bread and birdseed wrapped in a piece of paper towel and carefully place in my side pocket. I grabbed my old ski poles and walked into the cold.
The blast of air that hit me had me ready to go back inside. (16 degrees Fahrenheit/ -8 degrees Celsius)
The sun was out and the air was clear and fresh. The snow was white, shining crystals of blue-grey and white. The taller grasses and wild foliage poked up a dried, frozen brown -beige, out of the layer of ice and snow. As I walked I didn’t crunch through the ice, I walked on top.
The deck was covered with three inches of ice and snow. I noticed something odd, the snow didn’t lie flat on the deck it was rounded. When I stepped on it I didn’t have a strong foothold. I had to slowly move up the deck holding tightly to the rail. This time, I was a child learning to walk hand over hand, unsteady worried about gravity. I never made it up to the kitchen door. I couldn’t move the frozen snow/ice off the steps. It was as if the snow, ice and wooden deck ‘were one’ and that was a force I didn’t want to slide on.
I removed the birdseed and shredded bread from my pocket. Reached through the slats placing it carefully on the rounded- sloped mound of ice.
From inside the house, my cats were waiting impatiently for the birds. They didn’t have to wait long. Sanosuki chirped, mewed, purred as he ran up and down the cat tower, excited and hopeful that one bird would come inside. He sat and watched as the bread and seed disappear.
The founder and owner of, Men with Pens, James Chartrand, (her pen name) has a business writing course, Damn Fine Words, which is starting on September 3rd
She is also running a contest; it ends as the business-writing course begins on September 3rd.
Information on the contest:
Blog post article of at least 450 words on why writing is important to you and how better writing skills would change your business”
“Two people will win a scholarship to the September edition of the Damn Fine Words writing course. (Retail value $1,599 each.)”
Writing is important to me because … I ‘need’ to use the written word to make money. Luckily, for me the very act of writing makes me happy, because it is not generating any income.
At this point, I feel like I am writing something for school. You know, that dreaded paper that every teacher asks you to write. ‘How I spent my summer vacation…’
I have no idea where I am going with this, so I might as well ramble on.
Last year, my fifteen year old complained about how much homework she was getting in her English literature class. When I had her show me the offending material, I was amazed and jealous of all the tutoring she was getting, everything from how to write a plot and characterization, to the ability to read and discuss literature at a college level.
We talked about how well she understood the class and her only complaint was that some of her classmates were trying to get out of doing their own homework. They would use sibling’s old papers or even get their parents to do their homework.
“Wouldn’t it be great,” I said. “If the schools made parents take one class with their kids?”
Her answer was a silent glare. Teenagers can speak volumes without moving their mouths, and say absolutely nothing after talking for an hour.
“I would sign up in a heartbeat to take this class.” I said that aloud. She said nothing.
I took my high school years for granted. The classes were just something I had to get through on the way to life, not realizing that life was right in front of me, never behind never ahead, just now.
I never know when to shut up so I added. “My classes never had the content that yours have.”
Having an adult tell you that ‘your’ schoolwork is harder than theirs ever was, well, all the rolling eyes and heavy sighing let me know she was not taking it as a compliment.
Writing, for me, was something I wanted to do after I opened that first page of my mother’s encyclopedias, neatly placed, on a small bookcase in the living room. I remember asking who made the books.
The answer I got was, “A writer.”
I often wonder if I were told, salesman or bookbinder or even garbage man, would I have felt that tugging at my soul. Maybe it was God who whispered ‘Writer’ in my ear.
Let me try again.
Why writing is important to me… because I can’t see my life without that spark of creativity, pushing my hands to write.
How will better writing skills change my business? This one is easy. It will give me focus on the direction of my writing.
In order to take my writing to the next level, which would be marketing and ‘what-ever’ I am missing. I just know that I need to learn a completely new way of looking at my writing, and my life. Doing anything well is a progress, steps need to be taken, no jumping ahead I may miss something important. Learning the right steps helps keep me on the right track.
Earlier this year
I grabbed my domain name.
I have a couple of logos drawn out.
I have ideas and a love of nature.
I just need something or someone to help me pull it all together.
*I posted another article on this contest here…WikiHook come by and read. 🙂
Anyone interested in trying out for a free class. Paste your link on the Men With Pens site. Do it soon! The contest ends on September 3rd.
I haven’t posted since the end of the Haiku challenge. I have been busy, busy, busy- pulling my hair out and wondering what sort of blockage is holding my muse for ransom..
Then a couple of days ago I stumbled on an article, then lost it later or I would post the link here:-( That article was an interview with a new author he or she was asked when the next book would be out, the writer said “never!” That writing that one book was horrible, he/she had no life and the mental distress it caused him/her was over whelming. I had a good laugh, then pulled out my crumpled up chapters and started over.
“You must keep sending work out; you must never let a manuscript do nothing but eat its head off in a drawer. You send that work out again and again, while you’re working on another one. If you have talent, you will receive some measure of success – but only if you persist.”
I have been sending my submissions to him through email, instead of posting on his site in the comments section. But today, I will post that poem here, and on his Blog.
I don’t get feedback by emailing him, I really don’t even know if he is getting the emails. I wanted to keep some poems unpublished, and that would be done by entering his poem a day challenge by email and not on a public forum.
Uriah is doing well, he wants the weather to warm up so pecan go hunting rabbits not that he ever caught one.
For April 4, 2011, Robert’s instructions were to “pick a type of person and write a poem about him or her”
I picked it apart so many times I didn’t know what I started with, I cut it up to only a few words then decided on the longer version.
Without further ado here’s todays poem.
By Gerardine Baugh
None is more obvious than in the stance of a teenager waiting for the morning bus,
Dragging her feet across the gravel driveway she stops and stares down the road, facing away from the winds that burned her cheeks and lodged dust in her hair and eyes.
With a heavy sigh she brushes hair from her face she was hoping for a few quiet minutes on the bus to study for an algebra test, all but forgotten last night, opting instead to spend hours on the phone texting about guys.
The bus pulled to a squealing stop floating heads lean asleep against the windows no one is talking that morning ritual was left back at middle school when everyone was a chattering cercocebus.
Now excited banter is used on the ride home, an unspoken rule set by upperclassmen studying or partying or sleeping in unison, until they wake up to off color humor and mistrusts.
In one fluid movement she sets her book bag on her lap as she takes the last empty seat behind the driver hoping for a day free of surprises.
Fishing around in her bag she pockets change for the cafeteria, and pulls out a math book falling into its pages unaffected by her growling stomach and the erratic rocking of the school bus.
This is the last day of The Haiku Challenge. I had fun! I hope you enjoyed reading my Haikus and you followed the links to other poets. Maybe you wrote a few yourself, If not, try it!
The snow is melting, sort of. Everything is covered in a very, slippery coating of ice, right now it’s glistening in the sunlight. Such dangerous beauty! I finally got a camera that works; now I need to set up the software and start snapping pictures. See you outside on our walking path..:-)