Unexpected Gifts

For The Sunday Whirl: Wordle #65
http://sundaywhirl.wordpress.com

Unexpected Gifts

Loud crack of thunder
swells as rain flicks
spray against bay window,
where gravity pulls it
down in veil of wavering
squiggles.

She relishes these moments
of enforced stillness, receives
them with humility as unexpected
gifts from the Universe. Plants
self in padded chair as change
in air triggers daisy chain
of memories which claim
her attention, like half-forgotten
refrain of song sung twenty years ago.

As storm shifts westward,
slowly lifts her head,
knowing it will take more
than a little bit of grit
and grittle to get moving again.

Elizabeth Crawford 7/15/12

Notes: Thanks to all who participated in the e-mail exchange, lending a lot of laughter to poetry writing efforts. I chose to use Brenda’s unexpected gift of “grittle” for its sound, leaving meaning to the reader’s imagination, although I did find a definition in the Merriam Webster Dictionary.

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About 1sojournal

Loves words and language. Dances on paper to her own inner music. Loves to share and keeps several blogs to facilitate that. They can be found here: http://1sojournal.wordpress.com/ https://soulsmusic.wordpress.com/ http://claudetteellinger.wordpress.com/
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23 Responses to Unexpected Gifts

  1. vivinfrance says:

    This is delight-full Elizabeth, in a literal sense as well as emotionally.

    Thank you much Viv. I have heard that poems are distilled moments. This one seemed to arrive in that form,

    Elizabeth
    ps. Loved the fun you had with these words.

    Like

  2. Irene says:

    I like how you employed the sound of it in a stormy still moment, and the mandala is beautiful, Elizabeth, as always.

    Absolutely loved your poem Irene, and thanks for your comments. The mandala is a kaleidoscope image of a photo and made me think of the blur of color that often happens to a rain drenched window, on a summer’s day,

    Elizabeth

    Like

  3. An elegant exquisite piece of poetry here – thoroughly enjoyed ….

    That one goes to the kudo box, PKP. Thank you very much, no one has ever equated me with elegant. I’m a North Wisconsin Hillbilly, lol.

    Elizabeth

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  4. I love the energy in thunderstorms. Seeing the lightening in the distance is amazing but, not if it causes any damage though. Love the imagery in this. The rain on the windows, the sounds and music in it all. A lovely read.

    Am glad you enjoyed it. It came easily because I too love thunderstorms,

    Elizabeth

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  5. Hi Elizabeth, nice music here in the storm. Loved your intro and following stanzas. It almost seems like I began to read a novel!

    Hi Benjamin. Novelists are told that those first sentences must draw in the reader, make him/her want to remain. So, very often a novel begins with a distilled moment. I think they hold that in common with poetry. Glad you liked it,

    Elizabeth

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  6. nan says:

    Very nice — the beauty of a storm comes through. I love mandalas and coincidentally went the mandala directions with my poem also! Funny when that happens.

    Nan, have long been enamored of mandalas, coloring them, now making them with kaleidoscope images and using the results as templates for even more color activity. This one was a colored photo that I put through the kaleidoscope app. Loved the outcome. I have long thought that our thoughts, especially when they fuel a creative activity (such as the writing of poetry), are set free when we do so. They energize the air around us and others respond to that ‘like’ energy. My experiences here on the poetry circuit only strenghthen that thinking,

    Elizabeth

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  7. Laurie Kolp says:

    Sounds like you’ve been hanging out with me during these past five days of continuous rain. I especially like the first stanza, but the whole piece is mesmerizing.

    Had to smile when I saw your comment Laurie. We’ve had lots of heat here and very little rain. This poem might be seen as a prayer to the rain gods from a very thirsty poet, lol. Thanks for visiting,

    Elizabeth

    Like

  8. knowing it will take more
    than a little bit of grit
    and grittle to get moving again.

    I love how the sound plays in little bit of grit!! This is very well written, Elizabeth!!

    Thank you Hannah. I prefer free verse and steer clear of the more classic forms of end rhyme. So must use internal rhyme to get the music that makes it work for me. This one came rather easily because of the wordle words themselves and all the fun of yesterday’s emails.

    Elizabeth

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  9. anl4 says:

    hmmm… nice rhythm, fun to read, a job well done!

    Thank you my friend, really like where you took the words and our overall experience with them.

    Elizabeth

    Like

  10. brenda w says:

    Thank you, Elizabeth, for “unexpected gift of grittle.” LoL

    The image of stillness and humility as a gift from the Universe. I understand this bit, and love how you transition from that with the “daisy chain of memories.” This is stunning. I LOVE it.

    Stunning? That goes to the kudo box without question. My mind boggles with the reality of having a friend who actually lives in Montana (spiritual home) and writes wonderful poetry, spiced with fun and laughter. Doesn’t get much better.

    Elizabeth

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  11. 4joy says:

    thunder, lightening, and welcoming plants – described as unexpected gifts – lovely images painted and I could feel the storm and her reaction to it….

    Thank you 4joy, and I liked your poem as well. Your response warms me because it says the poem works.

    Elizabeth

    Like

  12. Elizabeth, I felt as if I were right there with this woman. I love watching rain storms. Some really beautiful writing my friend.

    Pamela

    Thank you so much my dear friend. This was an easy write as I have spent a great deal of time fascinated by storms. The she is me and I like that now she becomes you, as well as others who share that particular fascination. Storms, especially when viewed from a comfy chair simply invite contemplation. And the gratitude is genuine,

    Elizabeth

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  13. Marianne says:

    I love watching storms! Wonderful writing! Favorite lines: “unexpected gifts from the Universe” and “daisy chain of memories.”

    It is a pleasant surprise to know that so many of us share that experience. I do see those moments as unexpected gifts from a Universe readily willing to share its beauty seeded in messages for those who choose to lean in and listen,

    Elizabeth

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  14. margo roby says:

    That would be my other favourite place to be, if I am not at the ocean, and that’s watching a storm. We had some magnificent ones when we were stationed in Oklahoma and I would sit on the front stoop and watch. Your imagery allows me to be the she, for a moment.

    Like the ‘grit and grittle’ as the two have a nuanced difference in meaning that works aside from the rhythm.

    Elizabeth, what is this magical comments appearance you have? I love the clean and classy look. Are you going in to edit and answering that way?

    margo

    Thank you Margo, I like both places as well. And yes, there is an edit choice just below each individual’s name. I click on it and get the comment on an edit type page, which allows me to respond singularly to each comment, then italacize it to keep it separate, and update it to get me back to the next comment. I believe the comments are as important as the poems and allow for a conversation type format. I also realize that many do not come back to reread the remarks I make, but I learn a great deal in the process because I often come back and reread the whole thing months later and it tells me where I was at as well as how the poem was seen/heard. Thanks for noticing,

    Elizabeth

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  15. Mary says:

    Storms often seem to inspire deep thoughts! And memories. You have created a realistic scene and wordled it well. Love ‘grit and grittle.’

    I would definitely agree, Mary. I really liked the ‘grit and grittle’ as well. For the sound and the sense it made to me. I find myself somewhat reluctant to return from that enforced stillness so rich with thought and memory, especially when it means doing dishes (grittle for sure), or something similiar, lol. Thanks for stopping and I really liked your very different take on these words.

    Elizabeth

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  16. tmhHoover says:

    Elizabeth- You carry the reader with you into enforced relaxation…can I stay just a bit longer? Thank you as always for your generous comments over at my place.

    Lol, Terri, you may remain for however long you deem necessary. I really like what you do with your poetry. It struck me deeply from the first moment I entered your space. Your word choices and images often put me in mind of Sharon Olds, and stike me in a similar fashion. That story is on my About page, and like that experience, I pick up things in your work more by osmosis than conscious understanding. To me, that means a bond of spirit/mind that I thoroughly appreciate.

    Elizabeth

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  17. Scribbler says:

    Living in an area very prone to fires, I agree that rainstorms are a huge blessing! Reading this poem felt as good as listening to raindrops on the roof.

    Scribbler, your piece was definitely a strong one and you took good aim with your resulting questions. If I ever rework this piece, I hope you won’t mind if I borrow your line about raindrops on the roof. Thanks so much for that added dimension.

    Elizabeth

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  18. Wonderful, Elizabeth

    Thank you Diane, I appreciate your constancy and kind words.

    Elizabeth

    Like

  19. JulesPaige says:

    Though I think I have forgotten how to make them…I liked that ‘daisy chain of memories claim our attention’. And again you teach us something new about the comment section… I wonder if that works at the other site (he-hum “B”) too. Thanks for your kind words and visit… I just go where the words take me. Sometimes it is more poetic, other times more story. And with each addition I think about all the branches and directions the stories can take. I’m trying to link both story A and B…I think I may have found a way… but there is so much in between and I enjoy the week to think leisurely about where I want to go.

    Jules, sorry, I’m finding that once a teacher always… I do know it works on WordPress sites, don’t know about others. I believe the best results come when we ‘just follow the words’ and allow ourselves to be led for a few paces. It isn’t always easy and can even be frustrating (often brings out my control freak). And I understand that fine line between poetry and prose because the same thing happens to me. When we stay open (as you have done), we are often given a key to both worlds. And that is truly a gift from the Universe.

    Elizabeth

    Like

  20. Misky says:

    Moment of enforced stillness is a perfect description. Really lovely piece.

    I hope you’ll find time to read and comment on mine. http://miskmask.wordpress.com/2012/07/16/burn/

    Thank you Misky. I was unsure of the ‘enforced’, yet storms do have that tendency to stop the present moment’s activity and draw one into their own peculiar energy. Or it may be a memory from childhood when my mother, afraid of storms, would call us together and light candles in case the electricity went out. Either one works, lol. And loved your detailed portrayal of the lightning flash and fire.

    Elizabeth

    Like

  21. Mama Zen says:

    Perfect capture of a moment!

    Thank you Mama Zen, still reeling a bit over that awesome tree. What a beauty.

    Elizabeth

    Like

  22. Carol Steel says:

    Reading your poem, I could feel both the power and the peace of the storm. Lovely balance.

    Thank you Carol and welcome to the Whirl. Just prior to coming here, the skies darkened dramatically and we had thunder and rain. I let it lull me and felt rested afterward. There is a balance to be found in all things, if we care to find it, even the traps that pull us down when we step out.

    Elizabeth

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  23. You found such unexpected pleasure in this simple storm of verbiage. Always a joy to read.

    Thank you Walt, but then I could say similar things about your own offering. Writing is both a gift and a pleasure, for the most part. A selfish pleasure at that. Aren’t we the lucky ones?

    Elizabeth

    Like

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