Crazybusy Week

January 30, 2015 @ 3:47 pm | Filed under:

But in a good way. It’s always nice to be busy with work. Especially the paying sort. Of course, I suppose if I didn’t enjoy the non-paying kind, I wouldn’t make time for it. Well, I guess this week I didn’t find time for it (Downton recap is way late, etc), but that’s okay. It all balances out in the long run.

Something I did do this week—and had a blast at—was give a talk on poetry to a group of mothers from my local homeschooling group. My friend Erica invited me, and our friend Lisa hosted the gathering, and I got to talk about poetry nonstop for 90 minutes! Which is pretty much heaven. I shared my approach to the poetry workshops I do with kids. Their kids, actually—the talk came about after one of our Poetry Club meetings, when I was filling the moms in on what we’d discussed, and someone joked that she could use a refresher course in this stuff herself. 🙂

So we set aside an evening and had ourselves a nice long chat about types of meter, literary tropes, and poetry analysis. Did close readings of a couple of poems, including my favorite of Shakespeare’s sonnets: #29,

When, in disgrace with fortune and men’s eyes,
I all alone beweep my outcast state,
And trouble deaf heaven with my bootless cries,
And look upon myself and curse my fate,
Wishing me like to one more rich in hope,
Featured like him, like him with friends possessed,
Desiring this man’s art and that man’s scope,
With what I most enjoy contented least;
Yet in these thoughts myself almost despising,
Haply I think on thee, and then my state,
(Like to the lark at break of day arising
From sullen earth) sings hymns at heaven’s gate;
       For thy sweet love remembered such wealth brings
       That then I scorn to change my state with kings.
I adore this one because first of all, it sounds like something Scott would say (in slightly more contemporary language, mayhap*). And also because I find it hilarious—and absolutely true to form—that Shakespeare of all people is bemoaning his own talent, wishing he could write like some other guy. Nearly every writer and artist I know feels that same way. You always wish you were better, faster, more lyrical, more succinct, more visionary, something.
*”Slightly” because we do seem to have a taste for archaic language in this household. “Mayhap,” for example. A total Scott word.
 And tonight I’m off to a fun event: the Local Authors Reception at the San Diego Public Library. Every year the library organizes a display of books published in the past year by authors who live in the area. Last time around, a stomach bug hit my gang on the day, and I had to miss the event. So tonight will be my first time. Looking forward to it! Have no idea what to wear.
Posts look weird in readers now if you don’t include an image, so here’s a picture of some color therapy I indulged in last night after the week’s deadline was met. Paint = magic.
Bad lighting but swoony colors nonetheless. The stripes at the bottom are mixes I was playing with. I find I’m most enchanted by the grey at top right, a blend of Burnt Sienna and Phthalo Blue. On the page it separates out in places to tiny swirls of rose or blue. Swoony. I quite like the leaf green in that right column, too, a mix of Hansa Yellow Medium and Phthalo Green (blue shade).
But all those “FU” abbreviations are making me giggle. French Ultramarine, of course.
Sheesh, I’d better get going or I will have to show up at the reception tonight in ripped jeans and dripping hair. Offscreen life takes so much effort!

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3 Reponses | Comments Feed
  1. tanita says:

    Will have to get some tips from you for doing a poetry thingy with my church… we’re allegedly setting the poems to music in an attempt to rewrite hymns, but we must start with poetry. I am rusty, rusty, rusty in teaching and have never done a poetry course specifically, so am slightly terrified… yours sounds fun!

    And yes: offscreen life does require a hair dryer and at times a flat iron…

  2. Karen Edmisten says:

    Having on offscreen life makes me seem so lazy, neglectful, and absent, bloggily speaking. Or should I say, thus spake I?

  3. Susanne Barrett says:

    I just taught this sonnet to my youngest this week! As much as I teach Shakespeare both at Brave Writer and at our homeschool Class Days, the sonnets have never struck me with the same power as the plays. My Class Day Discussing Shakespeare class is just finishing Henry V and are starting Richard III, and it’s so much fun! There’s nothing quite like watching Kenneth Branagh’s Saint Crispin’s Day speech! Talk about raw power!

    Okay, I’m off to grade a plethora of papers–literary analyses of Connell’s “The Most Dangerous Game” for my Class Day Expository Essay class while I wrap up Julie’s Groovy Grammar Workshop and gear up for my Playing with Poetry Workshop (which begins tomorrow) for Brave Writer.

    After the rain yesterday, I will bask in the mountain sunshine and watch for the daffodils as they start to poke up spring feelers in my front flower bed. 😉 There’s nothing quite like Pine Valley in daffodil season! 😀

    Susanne 🙂