"We become what we think about." ~ Earl Nightingale

Welcome to Sacred Ruminations

I hope you'll look around & leave comments
then visit me at my new blog ...

Giraffe Journal

and/or website ... Labyrinth Journal
both self-hosted at WordPress
where I publish as myself
rather than under a

I've not had much time for posting or blog visits, but if you're interested I hope you'll find time to check out my new blog, Giraffe Journal or my Labyrinth Journal website ... both self hosted at WordPress.

Thanks for your visit and have a delightful day ;--)
Hugs and blessings,

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Day 23 Visual Poetry (My Sacred Life)

This original piece is one I created years ago (in 1994 I believe) and after the fact, I noticed what looks to me like a "3" which brought to mind an experience from my past at the Methodist Church I attended as a teenager. For weeks there were signs posted all over the church grounds that said, "I'm Third" and we speculated what their significance might be. On the last Sunday of the month, one of the leaders told us a story (the details of which elude me) but I recall the meaning of the sign as being to put God first, others second, and ourselves third.

The actual message around the outside of this "shape" came through me ...(from the depths of my soul as I worked through issues related to the death of my mom, the loss of my marriage, and an illness that caused me to spend about six months in bed)... but the first three phrases "inside" the shape are a direct quote from the beginning of A COURSE IN MIRACLES that have stayed with me since I first came upon them in 1989 when I began to study the course ... something I did daily for the next 5 years.

I keep this framed piece in my living room because it's one of my favorites. Recently, when my new neighbor's daughter dropped by for a visit and asked about it, she saw an "Om" and found the message appropriate for that symbol. I suppose you may see something totally different. In the interest of "facing fears" today ... I share it here. A friend scanned it for me several years ago and gave it to me on a CD when I expressed my desire to use the piece a few years back as part of my annual Christmas greeting. I happened upon the file today while reorganizing my photos in Picasa and it seemed like a "sign" :)

I've created numerous "abstract" visual pieces like this one over the years, framing and giving many of them as gifts to family and friends. Typically I begin with a "doodle" (or line drawing) on the page then write whatever comes to mind around the outside edges using ink ... always in a single draft. Sometimes, as with this piece, the message continues inside the spaces. Often, my perfectionistic self would like to "fix" perceived errors, but because of my process ... whatever mistakes occur, remain forever. I've had to learn to live with them.

Upon uploading this one using Picasa and testing it quickly before composing this accompanying post, I discovered that clicking on it enlarges the piece enough to read the message more easily than the smaller "test scribblings" I've published on Small Reflections (here , here and here), so there's no way to hide. It is what it is ... I write what I write ... and I am who I am. I'll need to teach myself how to use the "scanner" function in my HP All-in-One printer before I can share any more of these pieces.


Mother of Invention said...

This is a fabulous piece of personal writing in a really cool format, the free-flowing style that allows for somewhat stream-of-coscious honesty of feelings expressed. I've done a little wee bit of this with gr. 6-7's, but just call it shape poetry.
One thing I wondered...if you could actually print it out in a linear form to facilitate reading it easily...I have trouble standing on my head and reading upside down! The words are excellent and you use many stylistic devices effectively.

Bring on more of these!

Kayce aka lucy said...

this really is a fabulous piece. i found so much i wanted to engage in in your post and then i clicked on the image. wow! i felt like i was reading something i wrote for myself. fortunately, i have a laptop, so i was able to pick it up and turn it around and around instead of standing on my head :-)

re: the #3, i am curious how you feel about that message today as it reminds of one i would have received in my methodist upbringing. part of me wants "us" to be tied @ #2 with "others" because really if we don't take care of ourselves, how in the world can we care well for anyone else? it also reminds me of the protestant ethic of putting everyone else's needs or wants before ours so that we ultimately disappear...i.e. the "3" fades into oblivion. i will stop my little rant here. it may be turning into a post, but i would love to know your thoughts.

your image would make a wonderful greeting card!

thank you for putting yourself out here :-)

storyteller said...

Thank you both for your supportive encouragement. You'll never know how close I came to removing it this morning when I logged on. I kept myself from deleting it yesterday by turning off the computer and leaving the house. :)

M o I
The teacher-in-me can read upside down, sideways & backwards after 34 years in the classroom, but I realize not everyone develops such skills in life. I considered "transcribing" the piece until I discovered how large it got when clicked upon. It seemed "readable enough" and my accompanying explanation already made for a lengthy post, so I didn't follow through with that intention.

I take this as high praise for I often feel as if your posts have been lifted from the pages of my journals. I'm consistently surprised by how "universal" my "private" experiences seem to be.

As with most things, the "I'm Third" story pulls me in paradoxical directions (and I think I've written about this somewhere already but don't feel like searching for it now). I might not have been so devastated when my marriage dissolved if I had taken better care of myself all along. I just had no role models for doing so while growing up ... but experience has led me to a place of greater balance in the last two decades, and for this I'm exceedingly grateful.

I've created my own greeting cards for years. This piece appeared on one such at Christmas time (as have other hand-written "shape" pieces like it), though not in 1994 when I created it. In recent years, I've generated holiday greetings (all with a visual component) on the computer and printed them myself at home when procrastination made it impossible for me to have them printed commercially in time to send them out. Perhaps as the holidays approach, I'll publish some of those pieces here (if, of course, I learn how to use this scanner). It's always something ...
Hugs and blessings,

heartinsanfrancisco said...

What a wonderful way to access your own soul! This has the spontaneity of automatic writing and the charm of a Matisse drawing, and can be appreciated on so many levels.

Thank you for sharing this here. It's truly lovely, brave and life-affirming.

Blessings to you.

storyteller said...

H in SF
Thanks for your lovely comments. I'm doing my best to "force nothing and hold nothing back" ... just as we learned this summer in Taos ... taking "baby steps" as so many have encouraged me to do. I appreciate you taking time to stop by and offer your supportive perspective.

Brandi Reynolds said...

this is gorgeous!! i never thought of writing poetry in that way and it's so inspiring! ( I think it looks like an om too) :-)

thanks for stopping by my blog today!

storyteller said...

dandelion seeds
I'm glad to have discovered your blog and am sure I'll return often. There's such richness and depth in the Blogosphere that I'm only just beginning to discover.

Thanks for your feedback here. I'm emboldened each time someone reads and responds supportively. It's all new to me.
Hugs and blessings,

Mary Ann said...

This is beautiful. It reminds me of mind mapping only is more fluid. It really is beautiful.

storyteller said...

Thanks for your comment ... it provided me an opportunity to revisit this older post myself ;--)
Hugs and blessings,