Poetry, Day 2: Skin, Prose Poem, Internal Rhyme


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Warning: this is kind of intense written from the point of view of someone who suffers from “dermatillomania”, a skin picking compulsion. I am not doing this in real life but I work with patients who have this issue usually due to childhood trauma… In some ways the urges and picking is similar to self cutting behaviors where it’s soothing in some way and people who feel like they aren’t allowed to really be who they are can feel the physical sensation as well as trying to get to dig to some sense of self.

So here is the poem:

Picking at my skin, digging in, popping a pimple open then feeling a bit of wetness ooze out. Can’t stop now, digging in with the nail of my right index finger. I get in my pale skin and under to the red raw piece. Greedy for bleeding, small drop of red blood wets on top of the cut my nail made. The jail of skin opens up to me to get under and pick more. Sore skin blood thin. My face full of pick marks more like ripped paper, not skin. Deep in I could get to bone and then would I be real? Would I be my own me? The marks on my face like writing, writing my thin hiding, my skin turned inside out I am so far in I can’t come out without pus and blood, sore and wet like grout that holds together frail pieces of my cover.

For Coffee Day Today: Writing 101, Day 10: Update Your Readers Over a Cup of Coffee.



 (Drawing of coffee thermos, photo of coffee thermos)

If we were having coffee right now, we would be talking about coffee! Today is International Coffee Day, something to celebrate world wide!

If we were having coffee right now, mine would be a dark roast with half and half in a red thermos. This magic thermos keeps your coffee hot or cold for hours…

If we were having coffee right now, we might be talking about hot coffee versus cold coffee.

I might be celebrating Coffee Day with you over a cup of coffee, sharing “when did you start your coffee love affair?” stories. I would tell you about drinking coffee in high school. I drank it black back then, fitting for a teenager in the 80’s! I would remember (being told later) that I tried my first taste of coffee with milk when I was about 2! Then not drinking it again until probably age 13… I would remember, being a non morning person, how coffee helped me avoid talking to the very early bird morning people in the kitchen. Then I would pass on to college and reminisce about the not so great coffee I consumed quantities of to linger in the dining hall, to stay up all night studying, to wake up any time of day…

If we were having coffee right now, I’d be asking you lots of questions about your relationship with coffee. The usual, when, what, where and how. Why do you drink coffee is not a real question! I’d ask if you have any memorable crazy coffee stories.

Best of all: If we were having coffee right now, it being 11:17am, I might not be saying anything, and you and I might just be sitting and enjoying our coffee together!

Writing 101: Day 8: Expand a comment


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I’m catching up on my assignments for Writing 101. It’s Day 15 but I’m on Day 8!

So I found one of my comments as a reply to someone. The idea is to take a comment you made on your blog or wherever and write more about it.

Here’s the comment:  “Fashion is my big love after art and art therapy!!!” The context was a photo I posted of an outfit and someone’s comment about it, so I thanked them and said that the above comment. I will keep it brief to continue the one sentence or a few thing, but not one sentence, maybe 4-7 sentences…

Fashion is my big love after art and art therapy. I did not think about drawing and painting or even like doing it until I was about 19 or 20 and “accidentally” took a drawing class. I remember loving fashion and clothing even as a kid. The only thing I remember drawing was dresses when I was probably 6 or 7. I remember liking to draw puffed sleeves and not wanting to draw arms. I really got into fashion and clothing around 8th grade and throughout high school and it just continued throughout my adult life. I was a big fan of Betsey Johnson back then in the 80’s and loved her “punk” label. I had to wear a uniform in high school, and this definitely put a damper on my love for purple and any color that wasn’t allowed. We were supposed to wear white, black, yellow, green or blue with the uniform, and I wanted to wear purple, red, pink and orange. Anyway, fashion was always fun and exciting for me as a teenager. I loved going to the East Village back then when it was the East Village! I even designed my high school graduation “gown”.

Now as an adult, I am an avid watcher of Project Runway and have seen every episode since the beginning. It is one of my top favorite TV shows, and I don’t like “Reality TV”! Ok. That was a lot longer than a few sentences, and I could expand on this post more, but this is it for now. If I was good at sewing and precision, I would be a fashion designer! In another life!

Writing 101, Day 7. “Hook’em with A Quote.”


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I chose this quote because it came to mind right away. Simple sentences are my new mantra. Life without art is stupid. It is true. It is simple. It needs to be said. People take art for granted, degrade it, devalue it, stomp on it, but it refuses to go away. When you use less words you can get to the real stuff more directly. You don’t have an option to pile on words and decorate and embellish. In other words, no bullshit.

Life without art is stupid.

The other important thing about this quote is that Einstein or Van Gogh, the Dalai Lama or Jesus or Virginia Woolf did not say it. I don’t know who said it. I first saw it as a photo on a sign. When you have no person to go with the quote, there is no extra stuff piled on, no association to a great artist. It could have been said by an artist who sold no paintings, had no shows. You don’t get to say, well this person was such and such so blah blah blah. I think some of the best things were said by Anonymous.

If I were telling someone what I’ve learned in the 47 years I’ve been on earth, what kind of wisdom I would impart, etc. I would have this wonderful answer, “Life without art is stupid.”

The great thing is the quote says so much in five words that I have nothing much to add to it. I can say that these are the words I live by, that for the most part, life without art would not only be stupid, it would be unbearable. Imagine having no music, no paintings, drawings, no movies, TV shows, no comic books, no literature, no video games, etc.

There’s your answer to the question, Is this true and what does it mean?. Life without art is impossible. So next time you come across a person making anything, and you know they are going to not get paid for it and maybe nobody will be the audience of it, or that this person or you might make it and throw it in the garbage, just remember that this person, simply by making something that is not useful in any practical way, by making something the world doesn’t need, is contributing to your life having value.

When you see a creative YouTube video and think, wow, only three people looked at it and it’s been up for a year; why do they bother. Remember this quote and know that every person out there has a creative spirit, and without the collective of our creative spirits, life would be unlivable, stupid, impossible, unbearable. You would not be here right now without art. Period.

Writing 101, Day 3: One Word Inspiration: Chosen Word: UNCERTAINTY


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Life on earth is mostly about uncertainty, so the word Equanimity expresses a way to be in and live in “uncertainty” and remain grounded and joyful, and equanimity as a principle is about being in the middle of things and able to look over what’s in the moment with no judgment.


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