This month is November, National Novel Writing Month – which is just about my favorite favorite time to get super excited about writing and spread that excitement to students and colleagues, and really anyone who is willing to sit down and write a little each day. I love to write all year, but this month gives me an excuse to try to get everyone around me to write, and also it gives me a daily reminder to write. I have students writing novels and they are just charming; it is so neat to see the creativity of kids (4th – 12th grade involved this year), when there are no stakes besides the ones they set for themselves. Each student set their own goal- mostly novel related and word count goals, one a song writing goal, and one a comic book goal. It’s pretty neat. This year, my goals are not novel oriented, but instead my goal is just to write every day.
Not having a specific topic has been freeing, and has also created a pretty hilarious word document that spans multiple genres and seems to have a bit whiplash from day to day. The last few days seem particularly different, and in an effort to just keep writing, I thought I’d share. (Caveat for friends and family – I’m fine and love my job – truly)
Yesterday, my writing went through multiple drafts as I first just freewrite put all my thoughts on paper, and then decided to write in iambic pentamer and then decided to re-write in messy sonnet form (a form of my own making). 🙂 This morning, I’ve turned back to the Psalm of the week and began my day in writing prayers, so I’ll share both below in order to balance out the post and share a bit of the dissonance.
Sonnet on a Wednesday:
Reality strains and over extends
Teaching and paperwork, days without end
I want to zone out – to drown out – the day
That highlights the broken, chipping away
A constant paying attention to details
That drones on in the voices and visuals
The need for more vision than I can give
To a world that breaks us in order to live
Pieces once whole, never to recover
Taxing the spirit, already so poor
Cracked façade lifted, beauty uncovers
Attention, you’re needed, please give up more.
Straining the soul, a call and a sending
Night and a day, beginning and ending
Prayer per Psalm 16
Show me the limits to my life
Teach me to love every seam
You’ve created to hem me safely in.
Show me the folds and creases that
only you can smooth
and teach me how to let go of the frayed edges
Knowing you will mend them.
Give me the Faith of David,
to ask and approach
but never question you Good work.
You are the God of every created thing
-heaven, earth, and every being
turns toward your light
even when we feel we’d rather hide.
It is so easy in the day to day
filling and following of a brightly
colored digital calendar, to
get lost in minutiae and forget
that all of the appointments, all the meetings,
the comings and goings are
all to serve you.
To serve this world and people you love –
and I am able, not for anything I’ve done,
but because you made it so.
I will stand firm,
knowing I could not do even that
without your Love, Lord.
My heart therefore is glad and my spirit rejoices;
my body also shall rest in hope.
For you will not abandon me to the grave
nor let your holy one see the pit.
You will show me the path of life;
in your presence there is fullness of joy,
and in your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
What are you writing?