Singing out through the "Vocal Soul" of Writing...

As I poet, writer, and even a bit of a "dabbler" into writing song lyrics, I feel I always need to "say" something very special when I write. As that comes to light in my poetry, it is kind of like my tattoo's, each one representing an event, or a realm that was extremely a rare situation for me. I have 8 tattoo's now, and honestly would love to have more. But, due to all of the medications I am on with the Lupus, RA, and so forth, even a very good tattoo artist feared they for one may give me a hard time in healing, plus just due to my thinning skin because of the Predisone and Lupus itself, I may not be happy now with a new tattoo. I was always thrilled with the others, thus after speaking with him, and giving it much thought I decided that was yet another thing taken away from me in my life by illness.
If you are not aware of these types of chronic illnesses, along with all of the medications you take while going through the "slings and arrows" of those, you may not understand just how many seemingly menial and everyday things you used to do, are just not something you may be able to do now. I am sure we often take for granted, (I know I did), everything from a wonderful snow skiing trip, to a new tattoo, to going to Six Flags, heck doing yard work, laying out in the sun, and even washing dishes or getting your hands in dirt potting plants could mean issues with these illnesses. So, now you find that nothing seems "simple" anymore. I must think through just about every damned thing on my "list" I do. Whether it is doing my house work, running errands, going shopping for a day, or an overnight trip to OK to the Casino, you can bet I have to make "extra" steps in order to have everything I need due to my illnesses and pain.
Now, that said, and I am not sure even why I "went" there, I want to get back on the subject I began with... feeling like whatever I write must have a "direction", a meaning, point to something critical, important, and why in my mind it must be a potent potion that seeps into the readers soul and absorbs into the very heartbeat of their life.
I have read a wonderful book on many occasions about this very subject called "Writing Down the Bones", by Natalie Goldberg. she really makes the goal for writers about never being concerned about what you write, but to write!!! As she goes along in her book talking about having journals stacked up everywhere of "junk", "crap", "bad" or what ever you call things you write that are simply something not great by your standards, you write anyway, and everyday. I have been completely in agreement with that most of my life. I have written daily, just about, for 35 years at least. With the exception of times I have been too ill after surgery, etc, whether it be a poem, a piece of "musing", even music lyrics, I write. I also have "journals" full of hand written, what I like to call the "pen and paper of my heart", where I literally love the feel of the pen gliding over the paper and allowing words from your heart and soul to flow like the ink onto a clean white sheet of paper. Honestly, that is my very favorite "way" to write. It seems to cleanse the palette of the soul for me. I feel many of my best works are in those pages and pages of small ninety-nine cent "journals", those small notebooks many of us have with the different color fronts. I have all colors of those and they are filled page after page, some back and front, even in the margins, of my entire life's story... if you read much of those, you would see how I bare my soul, raw and open, bleeding at times, to allow others in so they can witness just how much faith, hope and love I carry around for others.
But, all of a sudden, and I am not sure why, I began to think that if I did not have something of "value" to say, I best not bother to put pen to paper. Why write something I felt was not "good enough" for others to read? Wow, had I either gotten really "stuck on myself", or went the other direction to "lose faith in what my writing meant"? I had made all kinds of excuses in the past couple of years. Now, just due to time constraints (if I ever want to PUBLISH anything, I have to "type" it into the computer), since I would be as slow as the tortoise if I tried to write it in my journal first then transfer that over to the computer, it would be through my eternity and several generations before I could have something all could actually read!!! Yet, I still had made excuses (some very legit) as to why I had not first of all, gathered my poetry (or a small piece of it) and published a book. I used m chronic pain and illness as a scape goat (which was a huge hindrance honestly), thought I was not "good enough", felt I could not find a way to even get it published, was not able to afford it, was plain scared that everyone would think it was horrible and laugh at me, I did not have the tie, I needed to take care of this, that & the other around the house, Mom needed help... boy I had a LOAD of reasons WHY I could NOT get a book out, or my "1st book" out of at least some of my poetry! As I said, some of it very true; illness and severe shoulder and arm pain did really keep me from even being on the computer for almost a year, or even longer (that is when I wrote once again in the paper journals when I felt like it)... yet other were simply what they were, me procrastinating mainly due to fear. I find myself in "fear" of beginning my "book 0 book" as I call it, the ONE that is the main one I want to have published hopefully soon. but, it will be a great deal of work to get all together, and even trying to begin the "1st chapter" often leaves me and my mind totally BLANK!!!
But, when I "changed up my mind" as I said when I was much younger, and made an actual "date" that I would send my 1st poetry book for publication, everything seemed to become crystal clear. Once that very 1st book was on its way to be accepted and printed, my "voice" burst open, and I felt I had so much to say to everyone out there, in the nation, around the globe. I have someting that others want and need to hear. they absolutely need to realize they are wonderful, perfection in their own right, they can have a renewed sense of hope and faith, they can reach for the higher rung, jump up towards that uneven bar of what we call life, take hold and go with it. You are worthy! That is the message, the portion of my soul, my heart, my very entity that I try to give out to those who read my heart's work.

So, I had to STOP thinking I could not write unless I had something "superior" to say, but I can write anytime, any how, any where, whatever it was, I could write it and I needed to do that. Of course as I have grown, evolved, and gained somewhat a tiny bit more wisdom, my writing has also evolved in so many ways. Even though I thought not too long ago I actually LOST my "voice", it had been there all along, waiting for me to pick it back up, and use it, which is great practice. So, wther my "soul" sings out in rhythm, rhyme, and harmony, or it is in the deepest, darkest pits of the brink of "a little unwell and unsettled of mind", or it is elation, honor and glory, music, or just plain old "crap"; all of it serves a purpose.

I am so thrilled to have what has been my best friend through thick and thin... standing right beside me all the way to places unknown or those familiar, my "voice of writing" always remains... faithful and honest!

Rhia November 22 Thanksgiving Day, 2012
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