Older Women and How they Got That Way

When I was a young woman just starting out in the working world, I often worked with “older” women whom I looked down upon for being perpetually cynical, negative and hard-boiled. Often they were also the kind of women who might sit on stools at the bar in their fifties, sharing limericks (and possibly Tequila) with sailors. As a confident newlywed, I once admitted at work that my new husband and I had opted not to have a television at all.

“Ha!” one of them snorted. “I give you 6 months!”

Since I felt infinitely superior in my own lofty, more evolved sphere, I was able to let this kind of low remark pass but I remember thinking privately I will never become like them.

I don’t think I have, exactly; but post-divorce, much older now, I see the whole thing with a different lens, fully appreciating the loss of a soft, golden innocence, the piercing sadness of betrayal and the kind of resentment that can form hard, sharp crystals in the heart. Continue reading

To Winter

O Winter! bar thine adamantine doors:
The north is thine; there hast thou built thy dark
Deep-founded habitation. Shake not thy roofs
Nor bend thy pillars with thine iron car.

He hears me not, but o’er the yawning deep
Rides heavy; his storms are unchain’d, sheathed
In ribbed steel; I dare not lift mine eyes;
For he hath rear’d his scepter o’er the world.

Lo! now the direful monster, whose skin clings
To his strong bones, strides o’er the groaning rocks:
He withers all in silence, and in his hand
Unclothes the earth, and freezes up frail life.

He takes his seat upon the cliffs, the mariner
Cries in vain. Poor little wretch! that deal’st
With storms; till heaven smiles, and the monster
Is driven yelling to his caves beneath Mount Hecla.

 
William Blake
** Don’t you find that “adamantine” is very underused these days?

Getting Through January

 

 

It’s been ages since I posted here and I have been wittering and fretting about whether or not to even continue the blog, but ultimately, it’s a good discipline for a writer and frankly, the most instant way I know to be published.  Which is often satisfying.   All of this can make one feel extremely down of course (particularly when combined with a nasty virus that has only just released its claws from me) and I have spent rather too much time dwelling on Donald Trump, my own money worries, Black Mirror which I will never watch again as I only slept 92 minutes after watching two episodes, Donald Trump again, repetitively bad Tarot card readings and the atrophying effect that lack of collagen is wreaking on my person, which I like to confirm daily by going to the worst lit mirror in our house and hanging upside down.

I believe that this act may be the evil twin of doing Positive Affirmations.

Oh, and also wondering if I should be scanning the Book of Revelation with a fresher, keener eye for detail since the world we are living in at the moment seems poised for something that is um, not greatness. Continue reading

The Reluctant Dragon

 

I have loved all animals all my life – furry, feathered, fuzzy, ones that creep – and till fairly recently, my home was full of them. I was definitely the mother on the street who would make room for the Hermit Crabs, transient crayfish and an assortment of baby birds as well as three dogs, two cats and a Bearded Dragon lizard who, despite raffish good looks was actually, well, still, a lizard. Continue reading