Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Another Night turns into Day (followed by an exposition on why we write)

(Warning: contains depressing material not suitable to all viewers. The clinically depressed may want to leave the room at this time, ie., hit the Back Button or, at the very least, put down the loaded pistol)

Now, sit back and enjoy the program.

Slowly, slowly, ever so slowly
The black of night turns into grey
And when the rooster calls it dawn
There isn't much anymore to say.
It is dawn. It is grey.

Black and darkness has been replaced by a sullen greyness.
It spills into this room full of windows
like chill water flowing into a capsizing kayak.
It's there, you can't live without it, but you certainly don't need it rushing in over the gunwales.

Where is the cheery dawn,
Of bright skies and singing birds?
There are no birds.
They didn't start their usual pre-dawn orchestrations.
Even they knew the day was sunk before it started;
Sunk like matter into a blackhole;
Sunk like the saber-toothed cat in a La Brea tar pit; (http://www.tarpits.org/)
Sunk like my heart & soul,
Lost in a sunless, friendless, loveless space I can't call home,
because home IS where your heart is.

And right now, I'm not even sure I have a heart left as I struggle with the La Brean tar pit minefields of these relationships.

Leave me to sink, to petrify,
So that future generations will ponder my fate.
Leave me -
- or, damn it all, reach out your arm and pull me out,
To safety,
To light,
To laughter,
And to love.

It is an awfully gray day.
Where is the sun?


Now, I know that some of you worry that I am clinically depressed. That is not the case. I am situationally depressed, repressed, and . . . <damn, I needed one more "pressed" word to make my virtual point. I don't think it exists>

Anyway, we all swing from sad to glad in some sort of pendulum-like certainty. Naturally, some folks experience the sad-glad curve skewed to the left and seem happy all the time. Others experience a skewness to the right and seem to be down all the time. Still others exhibit that classic bell curve and are medium most of the time, with equal parts happy and sad experienced only on their two long tails.

And me, as a poet, can conjure up any spot on that curve and reflect it back to you in words that emote that condition in your own heart & soul. That doesn't make me that person, that experience, that emotion. It is but a painting with words designed to bring forth a plethora of feeling to you, to hopefully hit a heartstring (NOT scientifically proven to exist).

So, know that there is a part of me in everything I create, but know also that I am not my creations in mood or measure.

We write to share a picture with you, fanciful, terrifying, illuminating, sensual, dark.

We write because we must write.
Casting off the feelings and fears that we perceive, we become more you and you more us.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Pondering Reality (or Why I Don't Sleep at Night)

I've been pondering life & death, self & other lately. We all walk in a little bubble of present reality. People pass by in their own bubbles, interact with us, and then, from our own perspective, cease to exist. Yet, they do exist, in their own traveling bubble of present reality.

On a bigger scale, we live our own personal lives, carving a path in space & time that is uniquely ours. Yet time existed long before us. Billions of years of time. And, scary to really think about, time will exist after us. But think too hard and seriously about that & you'll make yourself sick.

I sometimes try to imagine that moment of death, when there is first self-awareness and then, at least in this world, black nothingness. I can remeber the sinking pit in my stomache the first time I thought about that as a young boy.

And you wonder why. I don't sleep at night?

Welcome to my bubble!

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

My Favorite Blackberry Text Tricks

I've been working with my Blackberry Curve for about a month now. One of the neat things BB does is use AutoText (Options | AutoText) where you can define abbreviated shortcuts that will automatically be written out for you when you type them.

I've found a few poorly documented tricks and used them to create some useful AutoText entries:

Date & Time
I find date and time stamps useful for documenting project time in the Memo App. Date and time stamp shortcuts were already defined in AutoText to return long date (day of week plus full date) and long time (full time). These are defined in the AutoText App as %D & %T. I created short time and date stamps by using lowercase d & t. In the examples below, the text in quotes is what you type to call up the autotext, the %+Char combo defines the output. I include sample output that results from the expanded text.

• Long Date "ld" %D
Wed, Apr 1, 2009
• Short Date "sd" %d
• Long Time "lt" %T 4:32:56 PM
• Short Time "st" %t 4:38p

I use the ampersand a lot. Rather than always hitting SYMbol key + L I defined an AutoText "aa" as ampersand. Now I. Just type two a's and hit space to get &

I also like to use bullets and tab bullets in text. I defined "bl" to return "•" And "blt" to return " •"

In defining AutoText, %B means backspace. This is useful if you don't want a space after your replaced text. For instance, I've defined "http" to return "http://" by defining it as "http://%B" Without %B this would return "http:// "

You'll find loads of predefined typo corrections and text expanders by exploring Options | AutoText on your BB, including your PIN, Full Name, Signature (Owner) info. Check it out, create your own, and superrcharge your BB typing experience!