Finding my way back to writing…

Since work has now decided to slowly subside, or maybe I have started to place less emphasis on the importance of work, (more likely the latter!), I have decided to restart my blog. Don’t expect any breakthrough moments of brilliance or anything of key importance. This is just simply a regurgitation of my weekly, ok maybe monthly (let’s not make too much of a commitment eh) goings on as I try to amble through adult life in the desert.

Last week was a turning point for me; I found my way back into the world of writing as I stumbled across the Dubai Poetics group on Facebook. In excitement, I hastened to join the workshop that was taking place in Dubai Mall on Tuesday evening, expecting it to be a discussion of writing styles, techniques and genres. However, on receiving confirmation of my attendance, I was asked to submit a piece of my own poetry or writing for discussion; shock horror! Of course, I have pieces that I have written over the years but where were they? Nowhere to be found amongst the thousands of files on my laptop and hard drive. In panic, I decided it was time to start writing something new.

I took on a piece that I had begun a long time ago. Two stanzas were briefly played with, but the topic of the piece was something that lies very close to the heart. Thus, I never really got around to finishing It back then, as I guess the emotions at the time were a little too raw. Anyway, I pulled up the first part and spent an hour or so battling with a mix of emotion and writer’s block before coming up with my first drafted article. Using the same refrain throughout it was easy to piece together the topic and create an almost melancholic story. I say almost, because I don’t want my pieces to mournful or filled with sorrow, yet this particular piece left me with little other options.

The workshop itself turned out to be an eye-opening and insightful experience. I have written blogs, poems and excerpts in the past but never with an intention to perform the pieces. Spoken word is something I’ve only ever watched or listened to on Youtube or the radio and so it was interesting to meet those with much more than and as little experience as I have. Sharing our texts helped me to understand how my work may be interpreted by others and the difference it makes to only reading it myself. The power of punctuation really is more than just a cliché!

I decided to attend Friday’s spoken word event to get a feel for the performances and gauge the suitable topics (we are in the UAE after all!). I had no intention of performing myself, with hopes of leaving that until next Friday’s event, when I had a little more time to prepare. Nonetheless, the event was drawing to a close with around 20 minutes left for an open mic session. I felt that slight buzz of nervousness and hesitation as my brain ticked over the thought of performing. I had a few pieces in mind but none but the most recently written one to hand. It wasn’t memorised and not really written to perform. Yet I’d shared the piece to receive great reviews at the workshop and so that gave me a little confidence to volunteer myself. Seconds later, I found myself stood in the 9Hijri Exhibition in the middle of Dubai Mall’s Souk, performing my first ever spoken word piece. A little shaky at first,  the finger-clicks throughout my performance calmed by nerves and reassured me that I’d made the right decision.

I love writing, I have shied away from it for much too long now allowing life to get in the way a little too often. Writing has always been quite a private thing for me. I’m not talking deepest darkest secrets and confessions, private. But private in a word vomit kind of way. Sometimes it’s nice to throw all of your thoughts onto paper because the ink is much less transient than a feeling. It’s nice to revisit written prose and to reflect and gain clarity on a situation. I love writing, poems, short stories, diary pieces and excerpts. I’ve tried and succeeded in written word publication but now I think it’s time to challenge myself further. Joining in on Friday has given me a little more motivation for writing and much more motivation for Spoken Word. Hopefully, I can use my time out here in the sandbox to gain much more than just motivation.

Anyway, enough of discussing my innermost thoughts and feelings on my new love of Spoken Word. Here’s the piece I shared on Friday… in case you’re interested that is!

I’ll let you make your own conclusions and interpretations…

“Age is a terrible thing”

Physical decline, mental frustration,
Infantile mannerisms return as the days hasten.
A fragile frame, with the same soul existing.
Age is a terrible thing.

A shadow, a shell, a hollow and muted memory,
He sits in his armchair, watching in misery,
The clock ticks deafeningly on.

A gallant old gentleman with stories untold,
Now lost in the abyss, as the memories grow cold.
Age is a terrible thing.

Memories of walking hand in hand to the park,
I remember those eyes, crystalline, blue,
I remember those eyes before the onslaught of the dark,
I remember those times, if only he could too.

So full of energy at times, but others he’s spent, finished.
Days go by, all signs of life, diminished.
Age is a terrible thing.

He once was my best friend, now I’m unsure,
Now he doesn’t recognise me, sometimes, when I walk through the door.
Sometimes there is a glimmer, a flicker of him,
Sometimes there is a smile, a laugh or a grin.

He is healthy, he is strong, he is sound of mind,
A young man, a young soul that now lays confined.
Age is a terrible thing.

His stories light up his eyes, they light up my days,
His smile is infectious and his mood cascades.
With a flick of a switch he is home, he is here,
With a flick of a switch, he is gone.

He is tired, he is weary, he is ready to depart,
I am afraid, I am selfish, I can’t let go in my heart.
Age is a terrible thing.

 

 

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