Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Why I Must Bow Out Of OctPoWriMo

Due to my cat's back injury (which we still don't know how he got) I am unable to continue with OctPoWriMo, as I am spending all my time watching over him and making sure he doesn't jump up on things he can't get down from (jumping down causes the pain.)

Watching him in pain breaks my heart, I can tell when his medication wears off and right now he has all my attention. 

This cat has been with me for almost 13 years (we got him as a rescue at 8 months of age) and through more than 15 surgeries he has been my faithful companion and friend, and designated 'therapy kitty'; it is time for me to give back and put him first while he heals (hopefully this won't become a chronic issue...)

Thank you to all who read and commented on my poems, I am sorry I cannot continue till the end of the challenge with you.

hugs to all,


Sunday, October 15, 2017

Day 15 OctPoWriMo Off Prompt: The Non-Poem

~*~ ~*~ ~*~ 

The Non-Poem by February Grace

I cannot write today, 
she said,
the sky is falling in;
the phone is pinging
my ears are ringing
and all I want is sleep

There'll be no poem today,
she said,
there's too much on my mind;
then her thoughts came
pouring out
just like the rain outside

On rainy days like this, 
she said,
when everything feels wrong
we need to find our 
words the most
...and that was all she wrote.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~ 

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Day 14 OctPoWriMo: Off prompt... "Cat"

Off prompt. Our cat gave us quite a scare today so he has been the only thing on my mind. He's going to be okay but it will be a long couple of weeks while his back strain heals. Pain meds three times a day...and no jumping. Yikes. He's 13 and very stubborn, this is going to be rough.

In honor of my dear little faithful buddy, this haiku:

Cat by February Grace

Silken fur bright eyes
love rumbles through every breath
a fine noble friend

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

See you tomorrow...

Friday, October 13, 2017

OctPoWriMo Day 13: Reaching

Today's alternate prompt was to "write about mental health or mental illness."

This is something that I do all the time. Yet when I sat down and tried to write a poem about it, I ended up with a stream of consciousness in disarray; free-form poetry of the rawest order, words that just spilled out of me when I tried to put my own struggle with Bipolar 1, OCD and PTSD into words today.

This poem focuses on the Bipolar, the unpredictability of it even taking the best of medications that are available, and how I struggle on, even though I'm 'doing better' right now than I have been in a very very long time.

So here it is, it is what it is...

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

Reaching by February Grace

inside my own head
though the music that I hear
never stops

No one
understands the sound
and trying to explain
makes it worse

tossed about on 
restless seas
adrift, alone, and

though I'm not on my own
getting better
a little every day

the devil that you know
or angels' saving grace
who knows

is judged in tiny steps
on the 'good' days
I try not to forget

and trying to hang on
to improvements
no matter how small

when the compass spins 
and I'm left
to pick up the pieces again

mania or lows
so far down you touch
the bottom of the ocean

every single day
no knowing where
my mind will go today

may ever just 
exceed my grasp
still I keep reaching.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~ 

Thursday, October 12, 2017

OctPoWriMo Day 12: "Imagine Yourself On A Mountain"

My effort for today, based upon the prompt "Imagine Yourself On A Mountain"...

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

Up Above by February Grace

Counting heartbeats
visible exhalations
feet planted in snow
gloved hands still feel cold

Seeking wisdom
wanting solitude
I move hand over hand 
they say at the top I'll understand

Or I'll meet someone
wiser than I am
and learn from their mistakes
know what reaching the summit takes

But those on the way
back down from the top
don't speak of their sorrows
-no advice to borrow

Each of us must
find our own meaning
our way of believing
the ground was worth leaving

No two climbers are one
no two mountains the same
no two battles alike
our own dragons to fight

So I stop halfway up
and consider the view
-the meaning of my birth
-my place here on Earth

And I'll rest for awhile
then I'll continue on
it's my troubles I climb
I'll face them one at a time.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

OctPoWriMo Day 11: I can't dance.

As part of today's prompt we were supposed to get up and dance before writing, and I sadly realized this was a prompt I would have to turn around and write a poem from my own viewpoint.

You see, I can't dance.

A genetic syndrome has left me with fragile connective tissue, and this causes all kinds of system-wide problems in addition to causing joint deterioration. I have a host of other health problems as well, not the least of which at the moment is a frozen left shoulder so there is no way I can dance. Not even raising my arms while seated.

So this haiku is what came to my mind for today... I hope that it speaks to all who suffer chronic pain and illness and lets you know that if you do, you're not alone.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

A Haiku by February Grace

limbs stiff joints frozen
made of concrete lined with lead
broken dolls can't dance

~*~ ~*~ ~*~ 

See you tomorrow on day 12...

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Day 10 OctPoWriMo: Power Struggle

Today's prompts were all variations on the theme of "Power and Control", and my own personal take on this is "Power Struggle"; more on my own personal battles with Bipolar Disorder 1 and how hard it is to manage it.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

Ship In A Bottle

The battle for control
is not about strength
thoughts, feelings, and mood
are not about attitude

I have a disease
that’s not easy to say
but it’s always been true
long before I knew

my mind sometimes lost
to the struggle to live
between sunlight and stars
my heart bears the scars

adding meds to the mix
of a chemical brew
to feed my thirsty brain
in all the truth remains

that struggle is life
I’m a ship in a bottle of pills
fighting hour upon hour
to control my own power

~*~ ~*~ ~*~   

Monday, October 9, 2017

OctPoWriMo Day 9: Off prompt... My struggle with writing and Bipolar Disorder

I'm looking at the calendar and thinking ahead... it's almost November... which for me, means it's almost time for National Novel Writing Month.

I've participated in NaNoWriMo since 2008 (only missing one year due to health issues) and also written novels for several Camp NaNoWriMo events as well.

This year, I'm uncertain if I should participate. That almost never happens, but it's happening now.

I've just started to feel the positive effects of a new Bipolar med added to my cocktail after over two weeks of waiting and seeing. I feel more balanced for the first time in a long time and I am unsure if I should let the process of writing a novel (which always makes me manic) interrupt that new-found balance.

I know what my doctor would say. I know what my therapist would say. I'm writing poetry, I'm writing, SOMETHING, right now. Isn't that enough?

But I have this obsession with novels... at least when an idea gets a hold of me and won't let go. Maybe that's the issue this year, too, I haven't been hit by that lightning bolt idea that demands to be written.

In any event I am considering my options. I still have time to think about it, change my mind, change it back again, and see how I feel come November 1st. That is what really matters.

So my off-prompt poem for today is obviously about my love/hate/obsession with writing... I hope you like it.

~*~  ~*~  ~*~ 

The Struggle by February Grace

invite trouble
muse or siren
whatever they may be
they possess a power over
my heart, mind and soul, sinking
taking me under a sea of obsession
from which there is no escape, except to
accept what it is and see it through until
its only possible conclusion, writing words I long to pen:

The End

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Day 8 OctPoWriMo: "What do you know and how do you know it?"

For today's poem we were encouraged to take that question, "What do you know and how do you know it?" into consideration and write freely for ten minutes to see what we know and how we've discovered it.

The result of my ten minute exercise is a free form poem almost; not quite an essay, not quite a poem. I'll include it at the bottom of the haiku I wrote that sums up what I discovered about myself in a few lines for those who don't want to read the whole thing.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

People are precious
each one irreplaceable
treasure the moment

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

The long version...

I know that life is short
and often changes or ends

even with warning
when life ends
it leaves a hole 
nothing else can fill

People are not interchangeable,
people are all irreplaceable
what's lost is lost
but never forgotten

I know these things
because of experience;
that toughest teacher
of them all

the lessons are cold
and often cruel and
there is little way
to avoid them

even if you try
to learn from
the mistakes of others

then you just make 
different mistakes
unique to you

trial and error are
and integral part of life
losing your way
doesn't mean you'll always be lost

finding yourself is something
you must do every day
to keep the world from
taking you over completely

love is all that matters
in the end
it's always worth giving
it's always worth doing

then you can look back
and know you acted
in kindness

knowledge brings 
peace of mind that
can't be purchased
or taught or learned

it just is

without it life is hell

there is no joy without peace

no hope without forgiveness

no life without love.

Saturday, October 7, 2017

OctPoWriMo Day 7: An Off-Prompt Haiku

Short and sweet (and off prompt) this is what I've got today...

A Haiku by February Grace

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

Autumn breeze whispers
every leaf seems to know me
trees keep secrets well

~*~ ~*~ ~*~ 

Hope you enjoyed it! See you tomorrow, I hope you are all having a lovely weekend and enjoying OctPoWriMo as much as I am.


Friday, October 6, 2017

OctPoWriMo Day 6: "While I was pacing the floor..."

Today's prompt: While I Was Pacing The Floor

Today's chosen word prompt: pacing happy thoughts

Today's prompt asked about times in our lives when we've paced, and while I am more of a fidget type than someone who routinely paces, there have definitely been times in my life when I did. Many sad times, manic times, those kinds of things.

But I didn't feel like going to a dark place today, so I am writing about the happiest time I ever paced in my life; the night before my daughter was born, almost twenty-two years ago.

There really is no structure to this poem, it's more of me telling a story I suppose. But in its free form I share with you one of the most exciting, and joyful nights of my life.

You see, I'd lost two babies to miscarriage before I was expecting my daughter, then I fell ill with Chicken Pox (yes I'd had them as a child I got them again, severely) when I was only two weeks along with her. They couldn't tell if she had fingers or toes from the ultrasounds because she curled them so tight (nor could we tell she was a "she".)

The complications were many and even required surgery at 20 weeks to keep me from losing her. So by the time I had made it to full term and I was all swollen up and my blood pressure was high, they wanted her to finally be born.

So I paced...and she was born a beautiful girl with pitch black hair, and ten perfect fingers and toes.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

While Plastic Snowflakes Sparkled by February Grace

Nine months bedrest, so high risk
“Don’t pick out a name,” they said
but we held on both you and me,
until my blood pressure rose and it was time

“Walk,” they said and so I did
pacing glittered hospital halls all night long
the decorations glimmered overhead
plastic snowflakes and strands of tinsel

It was Christmas Eve
and outside, how it snowed
I smiled thinking soon I’d hold you at last
for the first time, and give you your name

The nurses said they’d never seen a mother pace like me
they said they’d “never forget my smile”
as I walked all through the hours until the dawn’s first light
… you were born on Christmas Day, 7:43 at night

~*~ ~*~ ~*~  

...and I can honestly say, though I loved my daughter even before she was born... I love her even more today.