I’m sitting here in my jammies looking out at the wet gray skies of Spring. A gentle rain, just a titch beyond mist, covers newly budding trees in delicate droplets. I grab my cell, traipse outside into the wet grass, slippers and all, driven to capture a droplet of rain. It’s #worldpoetryday and I want to share my rain drop and Haiku with the Twitter-verse. It’s not until I post the photo here that I see so clearly the blurred world behind the raindrop is actually much clearer (albeit upside down!) in the tiny drop. That feels significant. Metaphorical, somehow.
Part of me wonders if anybody will care in this Twitter space. I’m lonely there, not knowing exactly how to make friends and establish a community. It’s like I’ve moved to a new town and haven’t made any friends. I haven’t decoded that space and how to connect. Still, something presses me forward (could be the crowdfunding coach) to explore how I may find my tribe out there in that big blurry sphere. Perhaps it will become more clear up close, but right now I’m just upside down. It feels like there’s space for connecting with so many, room to be both a world citizen and a poet. To meet other world citizen poets. To see clearly how we’re all connected, even if it appears like an upside down fence at first. And even to go one step further and see no fences at all.
Poetry is my first love. My very first published work was a poem. It’s title “Red” really described its content. A simple reflection on red things, my third grade teacher Mrs. Montagner sent it to the Record Searchlight, my hometown paper, and they published it. As an adult, I know my 7 year old pontifications on red things wasn’t the impetus behind her actions. Having been a second grade teacher myself, I know instead she recognized my early state of chaos, and was doing all she could to boost my confidence in myself and how I fit inside the world.
The truth was my world was a train wreck. My mother and father had abruptly divorced, my world completely destroyed without warning, and reassembled a few months later with a new player in the form of my stepdad, Warner. He sat in my Dad’s yellow chair. He ate at my Dad’s seat at the table. But he was in no way my Dad, though he constantly asked me to call him that.
Mrs. Montagner recognized the trauma before me and she mitigated that by giving me a voice through my writing. She boosted my confidence by showing me the gifts I had to offer. She made me a reading tutor for the first graders, a prerequisite to my later life as a reading specialist. She focused on my strengths and showed me what it felt like to share my gifts with the world to help someone else. All of this helped me quiet the destruction of my world at home, and she did it all without me even understanding what she was doing.
This is what I want for all children. This is what motivates a huge portion of my creative work, including my current docuseries and novel focused on stories of youth mental health. We are at a time of possibility in our world, the #springequinox of humanity, where science and spirituality spin across the dance floor of what’s possible. And here, we have a choice. We can choose to stay inside and stay dry, complaining about the gray skies and wet grasses, or we can choose to see the beauty in the fractals. Some moments, it’s hard to get there. To marvel at the new buds that line the branches, and the red bud that grows wild along the highways of the California North State infusing it with such beauty. To smell the rain. To feel the gratitude of the plants, as they open up and share themselves for a season. But it can be a goal.
To the Twitter-verse went this Haiku:
Cherry blossom speaks. Raindrop reflects pink promise. New beginnings now.
I hope somebody will love it, but it’s really not the point. The sharing was my part and I did that.
As we step into this new season, what wants to open in you? What story do you need to share with the world?