Poetry, Prose and Parable.

Doesn’t have a point of view, knows not where he’s going to.

Nowhere Man / What Goes On by The Beatles (Single, Pop Rock ...
Image :rateyourmusic.com

Songwriters: John Lennon / Paul McCartney: Lyrics from Nowhere Man: The Beatles:1965

I would frequently use song lyrics and music in my classes to demonstrate a point. When teaching students how to write an essay, I would explain that they needed a thesis, which simply put, was a point of view. Their point of view needed to be stated clearly and then logically backed up with examples and evidence. I would also take a rectangular block of florists foam, a large nail and a hammer and demonstrate that everything they wrote in the essay needed to hammer home their point of view and that by the time they got to the end of their essay, their reader should be able to see their clear argument.

So back to The Beatles, we would listen to their 1965 hit, Nowhere Man, particularly the line, Doesn’t have a point of view, knows not where he’s going to and I would explain that if their writing did not have a clear point of view, they would be all over the place and not know where they were going to, likewise their readers and marker/s would not either.

We would also do some work on perspectives by looking at scenarios and the different perspectives of the various stakeholders. We would notice that perspectives, or the way we view a situation, or our point of view would often depend on our social and/ or cultural history, our experiences, our interests, or our stake in a particular outcome.

I would explain that the students were entitled to their own point of view, they could say whatever they liked as long as they could support their claims with evidence and examples which were factual and credible.

It is OK for people to express different points of view. We are different people with different stories and different experiences. In fact, to listen and consider a point of view which differs to our own, to acknowledge the perspectives of people differ and to seek to understand rather than criticize is a great step towards personal growth and social harmony. You do not have to agree with my point of view, but I can still, with respect, argue it and with respect I can listen to understand your point of view. But there are those from all stripes of politics, culture, race and religion who have stopped respecting, who have stopped listening and who have stopped seeing.

So it’s back to the Beatles and another line from Nowhere Man;

He’s as blind as he can be, Just sees what he wants to see.

Whoever knew The Beatles knew so much about writing essays!

Poetry, Prose and Parable.

I’ve been drinking from my saucer.

Chapter 33 - When Your Cup Overflows
Image: debipaynedesigns.com

I haven’t written for a couple of weeks, but my goodness, a lot has been happening. I have renewed my WordPress account for another year and renewed my wayleadsontoway.life blog domain and we have had loads to celebrate.

My son and his wife and two little grandies arrived from interstate; since our borders were open they could visit. They came earlier than planned and just as well, as our borders have closed again now to folks from their city. It was wonderful! We celebrated on two occasions the birthdays of two very important persons and had Christmas in July just because we could. Such fun! I laughed, sang, told stories, cuddled, raced, crawled and rolled around with the little ones. In addition to all this, was the Naming Day celebration for grandie #5. Indeed, to quote the words of poet, John Paul Moore, I’m drinking from my saucer’ cause my cup has overflowed.

Adult offspring who love and respect you and who want their children to love, respect and know you, are one of the great blessings of being a parent. It is a great reward for that journey of years and years of parenting and then to see them parenting their own children in loving and responsible ways; well, I’m drinking from my saucer.

So, it is with this in mind that I share this poem, written about that loving, responsible parent when he was about 14. He assures me that he is going to make sure his children study and do all their homework and now says, Mum, you should have made me work harder at school. We just laugh about it together because we both know the story.

A Poem for a Boy. written by Estelle D. circa 1995.©

Get out of bed, you sleepy head, the day has now begun,
Streaming in the window is the light of morning sun.
I shake him but he lies there, still, like the living dead,
Snuggles down in the bed, pulls the covers up over his head.
One call, two calls and a third time,
Out of bed but now for the bathroom, has to stand in line.
Breakfast is quite an affair, cereal, milk, toast, jam, fruit, stuff everywhere,
How to fill this body growing ever so fast?
He's reached six foot and then gone past!
Off to dress in uniform; now the fun just starts,
Mum, where's my socks? 
Where's my tie and garters?
Mum, where's a clean pair of jocks?
They're in the drawer where they're supposed to be,
Can't you even see?
Aren't you big enough yet,
To dress yourself without me!
Mum, have you packed my lunch?
Of the next request I already have a hunch.
Mum, Can you pack my bag?
Your lunch is packed and in your bag, to pack your books is up to you.
Oh, Mum, can you please? I can't find my other shoe!
Look! Hurry up! You'll miss the bus!
Why every morning do we have to have such a fuss?
Aw. Mum, don't have a cow!
I need you to sign this piece of paper now,
I need some money and a note for an excursion on a boat.
The bag is ready. The lunch is packed.
Have you got your hat?
Bye, Mum, I love you. No time to stop and chat.
Flying out the gate. I'll miss the bus.
I'm already five minutes late.
The morning rush is over; I feel like I've been done over,
Now he's safely out the door,
I sit in the sun and a fresh cuppa pour,
I take some time to recover,
And muse about the price I pay for him to call me Mother

P.S.  I am very proud of the man the boy has become. I am proud of all my adult offspring. We know our story! It has not always been easy or fun. The job has been done imperfectly, just as life is imperfect, but it has been done with love and sacrifice and I can tell you every bit of it has been worthwhile; so I'm drinking from my saucer 'cause my cup overflows. 













Poetry, Prose and Parable.

Dancing Rainbows.

Rainbow Life Quotes. QuotesGram
Image: QuotesGram

It only happens at one time of the year; and this is it. The rising eastern sun has to be in just the perfect spot to beam through the sun catcher crystals hanging at the kitchen window and fill the kitchen walls and ceilings with rainbows. When you make the crystals swing, the rainbows dance all round the room. And so it was a couple of mornings ago when I showed my little granddaughter, aged two, how this all works. Mesmerised, she took it all in and said, “Dancing rainbows!”

When I was a little girl I lived on a farm situated almost directly on the Earth’s parallel of latitude 23.5 degrees south of the equator, otherwise the Tropic of Capricorn in the southern hemisphere. I have many happy memories of my childhood; when you are a child everything seems bigger and brighter and so it was with the rainbows. The biggest, clearest and brightest rainbows would arch the entire sky after a summer’s downpour.


Storms were a family affair, we would gather on the front verandah and watch the lightning split the sky and wait for the thunder to crack, counting the space of time between both so as to determine how close the lightning was and judge if we were right in the middle of the storm.

One afternoon, after a heavy thunder storm, the rainbow ended in the field right in front of our home. My father told me that if I were to go out there I would find a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. So off I trudged. The field had just been ploughed and I sank down into mud; but do you know, I could never get to the end of the rainbow. The closer I came to it, the further it moved away, nor could I see that pot of gold. Needless to say, I came back empty handed feeling a bit discouraged and short changed about the whole deal.

If you were to ask me my favourite colour, I would say all the colours of the rainbow. Red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet. I make an effort to fill my life with colour. When I think of the rainbows of nature, I find them awesome, inspiring, magical. One of the things that fascinates me about life, is that it is filled with paradoxes and of course the paradox of the rainbow is that you have to endure the storm before you get to experience the beauty of the rainbow.

Rainbows speak to me of love and faithfulness. They are a sign of hope for a future that is bright and full of colour. They hold a promise and remind me there is a God and all is well. In a world filled with pain and tears, there is only one thing that is certain and that is that nothing is certain. Dreams, promises and hearts can all be shattered so, for me, seeking out the rainbows of life is just plain, good therapy.

Although I did not know it at the time, while I was trudging through that mud, I was being exposed to an important life lesson. Life is a journey, not a destination and for as long as we are alive, we will never arrive. Just when we thought we were where “there” where we wanted to be , just when we thought we were ready to scoop that pot of gold, we realise that “there” has moved and we still have further to go.

Life is not always sunny but, regardless of how severe the storms, it is still worth believing in a future with hope. It is still worth seeking the promise. And it is worth making the effort to fill your life with all the colours of dancing rainbows.

After Rain There's a Rainbow After a Storm There's Calm After the ...
Image:Meme.

Poetry, Prose and Parable.

Just for Today.

Just on one year ago I started to write this blog. Since then I have written thousands of words and if you have read any of them, thank you. My blog is for self discipline. Writers write but it is a discipline to sit down and actually do the writing. I believe there is a book in everyone as everyone has their story and this is evident when one actually listens to others. So just for today may you treasure your own story, truly listen to another and learn some of their story and be thankful, for however painful or difficult your story is, it is what makes you a truly unique and remarkable individual.

Take it day by day and be grateful for every breath • - Post by ...
Image: Boldomatic

Life is not like an escalator which we hop on at the bottom and it delivers us seamlessly to the top of our game. Rather it is a three steps forwards two steps back and then around in a circle or two. Sometimes we get absolutely stuck or fall off and land right down at the bottom again. The secret is to live one day at a time. Not everyday is outstandingly spectacular, some are, but many more are quite ordinary and some are downright awful, notwithstanding, there is magic in every single day we breathe because it is this actual day by day living that we call Life.

 Just for Today  by  Estelle D.© Copyright 2001

Just for today I will smile,
Just for today I will be happy,
Abraham Lincoln famously said,
Most people are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.
You can do it! Just for today.
Just for today I will be kind
to myself and others.
Just for today I will accept the reality of my circumstances
and live with in them graciously,
knowing they are the tools to my personal growth.
Just for today I will give myself time,
time to think, time to pray,
plan, meditate, daydream, write, laugh and cry.
Just for today I will take time to process my life,
Time to absorb all the things that happen to me,
 in me and around me.
I will process them into who I am 
and keep going.
Just for today I will increase my knowledge,
I will aim to understand more of the mystery that is life.
Just for today I will live,
I will not be weighed down with worry for tomorrow
nor will I be stuck in bitterness from yesterday.
Just for today I will see beauty all around me.
Just for today I will understand that
half the things I want to get done today
just won't happen.
And that is OK.
But I will live this day
because it is all that I have been given.

One day at a time sweet Jesus, that's all I am asking from you ...
Image : Happy Sunday Quotes 

As we move towards a future society and a world position that 
increasingly seems less stable and more uncertain, just for today,
make the most of this day.

Poetry, Prose and Parable.

See the value in it.... - Hodgson Health
Image : hodgsonhealth.com

To this point, it has been a productive day. I have prayed, read the weekend paper, had telephone conversations with two of my adult offspring, spoken with our oldest granddaughter to wish her a happy birthday, seasoned my new stainless steel frying pan with coconut oil, pottered in the garden, picked fresh organic produce, planted new seedlings, directed the grey washing water to places it is needed, pegged three loads of washing in the beautiful sunshine, began to sand the little, old timber table which I am preparing to marine varnish, had a long and lovely shower and completed 30 minutes of mindful body scan meditation.

As I was doing all this, I could not help thinking that I love my life, I love my husband, I love our home and I love the garden, I love my family and the many beautiful people who enrich my life in countless ways. I know I am blessed and I am filled with gratitude. But it has not always been so. I have had my share of pain, heartache, difficulties and poverty. I have felt abandoned, insecure, uncertain and lost.

I am going to share with you two things which contributed to changing my life. Of course, there are more than two because I know life is a complex conglomeration of many aspects but sometimes small changes can have long and lasting impacts.

Firstly I decided to change my thinking from; why don’t I have the things that I would like, to liking the things I already have. Turning this thinking on its head made, and continues to make, a huge difference to life everyday.

And secondly, I decided to be completely comfortable with who I am, imperfections and all. This one is a little more difficult to master as it is not a get out of jail free card which eliminates any responsibility to continue to learn and grow nor does it set up some sort of pretext for the arrogance that there is nothing to improve. However being able to find, accept and like oneself, warts and all, is the foundation of personal growth.

In my mid 40s, I began a practice of visualisation, whereby I would visualise what I wanted to be like at 50. What sort of person did I want to be? How healthy? How active? How interesting? How loving? How wise? Because whatever that person was going to be, I needed to start the process now. Through my 50s , I would visualise myself at 60 and now I am doing so for 70.

I wrote this poem in those days of uncertainty.

The Apparition. A poem by Estelle D.

Appearing through the mists of uncertainty,
An apparition comes to me.
A woman, moving silently,
Steady in her pace,
Total self acceptance written on her face.
Glowing richly in peace and love, 
Moving fluidly with patience and grace.
She beckons me with arms outstretched,
Holding forth her treasure,
Whispers, this too can be yours,
But you must love yourself,
Even with your flaws.
As she fades into the mist,
I sense, I am not alone,
There lingers her fragrance still,
In the clarity of certainty, 
I realise, It is my own.

Poetry by Estelle D. Copyright © 1996

Poetry, Prose and Parable.

This life is for loving, sharing, learning, smiling, caring ...
Image: quotation.io

The blog for today is simply a poem. It has been on my heart to write it and to post it. You can take from it what you will. To me it is a poem about freedom and there are many, many ways we can lose our freedom, particularly the freedom to live at peace with ourselves. If you have followed my posts you will know that I am a Christian and in understanding the blessings that come from being in Christ, I am also aware that there is a spiritual battle being fought over every single soul.

Dancing with the Devil.

Just a little dance, he said,
And it really will not hurt,
You can play with fire, he said,
And truly not be burnt.
So they danced with the devil,
And he rubbed his hands with glee,
For the last thing that he wanted,
Was for them to be set free.
Just a little dance, he said,
Just for a little while,
So they danced to the tune,
Of deceit and denial.
Smooth steps,
Beguile and defile,
False face, false grace,
Tight embrace.
Good! The devil clapped,
The battle, It is mine!
Lured and lulled by desire,
They did not know they were trapped-
Until they felt the fire.

And then the music stopped!
He left them weeping in their pain,
But made a mental note,
That when they were nearly healed,
He would call again.

Poetry by Estelle D. © 2020


	

Poetry, Prose and Parable.

Poetry Paints a Picture.

Quotes on Poetry: Leonardo da Vinci | Writing Forward
Image : writingfroward.com

Poetry paints word pictures to the reader through the use of poetic devices. Poetry is different from prose because prose is the natural flow of speech without the metrical structure found in poetry. Novels, short stories, personal and business letters, textbooks and newspaper articles are all examples of prose. Creative writing can include both fiction and poetry. It’s writing that creates or makes things up using imagination and invention. Creative writing is the opposite to Academic writing.

Prose | What Is Prose?
Image: Grammar Monster

Poetry uses Imagery or Figures of Speech such as Simile, Metaphor and Personification. Each of these techniques draw a comparison which it is expected will be familiar to the reader and therefore create an image or picture in the mind. An Analogy is a sustained simile or metaphor which tells a story; Fables, Allegories and Parables are considered analogies. An Hyperbole is a grossly exaggerated metaphor. Poetry also uses lots of Symbolism where words are used to embrace a whole idea, such as the cross as a symbol of Christianity. Poetry may call someone A Solomon to indicate a wise person or A Hitler to summon up the idea of dictatorship. We may say The Crown instead of Royalty or use a sail to refer to a ship or use Onomatopoeia where the sound echoes the sense of the word.

There are more poetic devices, but that will do for today. When I went to school we were taught to write using descriptive words such as adjectives and adverbs. Today we teach students to write creatively by implementing some of the poetic devices discussed above so that the art of picture painting, which poetry does so well, is evident in their short stories. Next time you are reading some fiction, look for the poetic devices.

Quote: Maya Angelou on Using Up Creativity | Sharon Abimbola Salu
Image: Sharon Abimbola Salu.

To conclude, I share a portion of a poem written by Maya Angelou. If you are not familiar with this author, please Google her and have a read about her and her poetry.

Caged Bird by Maya Angelou

A free bird leaps
on the back of the wind   
and floats downstream   
till the current ends
and dips his wing
in the orange sun rays
and dares to claim the sky.

For the complete poem please refer to Maya Angelou, “Caged Bird” from Shaker, Why Don’t You Sing? Copyright © 1983 by Maya Angelou.

https://www.poetryfoundation.org

Poetry, Prose and Parable.

Poetry is Music and Song.

The vast expanse of the night skies | Sabi Sabi Private Game Reserve
Image: http://www.sabi.sabi.com


The word universe comes from one, meaning uni, and verse, meaning song.

Here is my poem, One Song, about the universe.

One Song.

Have you ever stood alone at night
and gazed with wonder
at the bight starry light
and moonbeams, in the heavens high
reaching all across the sky,
And beheld the Universe?

Been spellbound by the vast expanse,
perfection, beauty, harmony and balance.
Awed by the wondrous sight.
Felt insignificant, beneath
The Maker's might.
And beheld the Universe.

Or do you think it's just by chance,
the heavens do their dance?
That by coincidence, not providence
that stars our sky enhance?
Without confusion or destruction,
to fulfil their heavenly function.

Created and sustained without beginning or end,
a timeless Universe; marvellous to comprehend.
Yet man, who lives about one hundred years,
full of vanity and tears,
So noble and so grand,
Still struggles to understand.

The Power so great, so transverse,
Who spoke into being
The Earth,
The Heavens and
The Universe.
Mankind, open your eyes unto seeing.
Behold The Universe!

Poetry by Estelle D.Ⓒ Copyright. 2020


Poetry, Prose and Parable.

Poetry is Music.

Poetry and music have a lot in common. Both use the same techniques, rhythm and metre, or beat, and both are a form of expression which connects with our inner being and elicits an emotional response. Poetry and song lyrics use the same techniques and literary devices; rhyme, simile, metaphor, personification, symbolism and imagery are some examples.

At the beginning of a poetry unit, students would often tell me they hated poetry, it was old, boring, fuddy-duddy stuff, so I would ask them what music they were listening to, then we would listen to that together, pull it apart and discuss the poetic devices alive and well in the songs and rap they were listening to.

Poetry is old, very old; it predates written text. The world’s oldest written poem is believed to be the Epic of Gilgamesh a 4,000 year old poem from Mesopotamia. The Old Testament has its Books of Poetry; Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes and Song of Solomon, so named because of the poetic devices used in their construction.

stone tablet with text of Epic of Gilgamesh
Neo-Assyrian clay tablet. Epic of Gilgamesh, Tablet 11: Story of the Flood.
By BabelStone (Own work), CC0. https://www.the-first-ever.com/first-poem-ever/

Other ancient poetic texts are The Bhagavadgita and The Mahabharata which date back about 2500 years and Beowulf, which is regarded as one of the oldest written poetic works in the English language, dates back to the early 11th century. Before poetry was written it was spoken because the stories of old could be remembered and handed down orally if they were constructed using, what we today call, poetic devices. This too is why we sing songs, and songs are used as a teaching tool, think about nursery rhymes and psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, because the poetic devices in song lyrics make the words easy to remember.

From our bookcase.

Shakespeare knew this and wrote his plays and sonnets using iambic pentametre which adds rhythm to a poem by the use of stressed and unstressed beats which mimic the human heartbeat. In the example below you can see, and hear, the da dum, da dum, da dum, da dum, da dum.

Iambic pentameter was used mostly by Shakespeare
Image : Mammoth Memory

It is this iambic pentametre which makes the text of Shakespearean plays a little easier to memorise, as I am sure many students who have had to present a Shakespearean monologue could attest.

It is only fitting that I conclude with my favourite Sonnet; Sonnet 87

Farewell! thou art too dear for my possessing by William Shakespeare

Farewell! thou art too dear for my possessing,
And like enough thou knowst thy estimate.
The Charter of thy worth gives thee releasing;
My bonds in thee are all determinate.
For how do I hold thee but by thy granting,
And for that riches where is my deserving?
The cause of this fair gift in me is wanting,
And so my patent back again is swerving.
Thy self thou gav’st, thy own worth then not knowing,
Or me, to whom thou gav’st it, else mistaking,
So thy great gift, upon misprision growing,
Comes home again, on better judgement making.
   Thus have I had thee as a dream doth flatter:
   In sleep a king, but waking no such matter.

https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/50648/sonnet-87-farewell-thou-art-too-dear-for-my-possessing.

Poetry is meant to be spoken, so say it aloud and hear the poetry, the heartbeat, the music.

Poetry, Prose and Parable.

Beauty

I guess it is because I am getting older, not only am I getting older but all the people around me are doing the same. I have often thought there is no need to fear advancing years as everyone is getting older at exactly the same rate, one day at a time, although certainly some folks seem to have an easier time of managing longevity. As the baby of my family, I have siblings in their 70s and 80s, I look at them and wonder how I will be faring 15 or more years down the track.

I was chatting with my eldest earlier today and in the course of the conversation, I said, I promise to be a good old girl. I won’t make life difficult for my children when I am old.

Her response was. Mum you have always been good, so if you do get a bit difficult when you are old, I am sure we will all forgive you.

Still, my promise is to myself just as much as to them. I know life can be very difficult at times, especially as one navigates old age but more than anything my desire is to age beautifully, gracefully and graciously.

16 positive quotes about ageing
Image: Bright Water

This is my poem on Beauty, written a while back now, I hope you will enjoy reading it.

Beauty a poem by Estelle D.

Beauty sat alone and cried,
 For something inside had died, 
Youth was spent and beauty faded, 
 Life had left the spirit jaded.

Gone was Beauty's youthful glow,
Movement and reflex becoming slow,
Flesh once smooth and plump, in wrinkles fall,
Stooping now, once was gracefully tall.

Beauty, the television told,
Had nothing to do with getting old,
Beauty lived in the bottle that was sold,
What was inside didn't matter, 
The bottle held the power to flatter.

So creams, potions and perfumes were bought,
Beauty was so actively sought,
But still, Beauty was illusive,
That the bottles had failed,
The evidence was conclusive.

Then Wisdom came and took a seat,
In the heart's garden, Beauty to meet,
Wisdom spoke with grace and charm,
Told Beauty there was no need for alarm.

While Youth and Beauty, they must flee,
They flee to make room for me,
And I bring a Beauty unto you,
That continually is made anew.
Beauty of the bottle is only skin deep,
I bring a Beauty you can keep,
While flesh must age and fade away,
I will be Beauty until your dying day.

I bring you Peace and Love and Grace,
I mark my Beauty on your face,
My Beauty has no barriers to colour, creed or race,
But if my Beauty you would embrace, 
Of Bitterness, Hatred or Malice there must be no trace.

Copyright.Estelle D.1996©