May 1, 2001

A Table, A Coffee Cup, & the Flight of Birds



Here are a few of my favorite online haunts:

[This is the site I visit to fantasize about living in Toronto again, which is almost every single day during the winter]

Jonathan Cainer's Zodiac Forecasts
[This is where I visit in the morning, when I need a positive spin on things past, present and future.]

Living Local
[This is where I go to see what Canadians are up to, sometimes I even buy things from the businesses listed there.]

Environment Canada Weather
[This is the site I visit every morning, and before every road trip during the winter]

I am sitting at a plastic table, next to tarmac stained with indecipherable blots of black. In the absorbed and muted shapes of oil, the meaning of life lies for all to see and few to understand. I see but I do not understand.

Above me black poles string wires across the sky. Beside me paint peels. The coffee is hot and sweet and delicious.

Females in expensive blue jeans squawk and peck at each other and the world from the next table. I suddenly understand how women might be referred to as birds. They notice me, an older woman alone, ruffled by wind and sitting opulent in frayed overalls and a wrinkled shirt. Missives fly by me as their conversation dips and turns to a discussion of writers and eccentrics. I stare into the blue sky and wonder. I do not want to understand.

Today, my morning walk includes a quiet cup of coffee. I am quiet; the "birds" are not. Near this outdoor table and chair vehicles pass, each calling out in a different voice, a different language. There is variety here, there is movement, and there is noise.

It is difficult to maintain a sense of self in such an environment. Just as these thoughts form, a winged bird perches on an overhanging wire and calls insistently for my attention. I see; I hear, and I do understand. As all else fades to background, I find that I am sitting here with myself once again. How is it that my own species cannot comprehend me, while this winged creature captures me so easily with a dispassionate eye?

It is much easier to write when invisible. In a larger city I could sit quietly, mind my own business, and watch the world go by. I would be invisible. In a larger city, scruffy old women in overalls scribbling madly into notebooks would not be considered unusual. They would not be considered at all. Sometimes being ignored is not the worst thing.

The weather is lovely and warm. The sun shines, breezes blow. Attila has been busy and absent. It has only been a few short weeks since he was snatched away. The adjustment, although jarring, is now nearly complete. We have fallen together into a new rhythm of absence and presence. My initial loneliness has been replaced by, "Goodness, your home already! How lovely!"

My many interests provide a wealth of easy and varied entertainment. This week I have rediscovered and taken up my bodhran. Sometimes I will play the beating of my heart, at other times I will play with recorded music. On rare occasions I play with other humans, other hearts that open and share. On rare occasions, when that fifteen minutes of fame is forgotten, the me becomes the we and dancing hearts cavort and frolic as one. Quality costs money, the best things in life are free.

My last journal entry was spoken into a microphone and edited on a keyboard. This journal entry was written with a pen on paper and manually typed into the computer. In the past, most of my journal entries have been typed into the computer from the keyboard. I wonder if the way words are recorded significantly changes the style with which they are written or the choice of their content and focus.

Perhaps I will notice a difference while listening to some of these entries as I totter around a nursing home with my walker, lightweight pocket computer, and headset.

Top of Page

Worldly Distractions

Red Paint Peels on a Rail
Beside the Table

By the Easy Chair
The Vision of Emma Blau
by Ursula Hegi

Rachmaninov Piano Concerto No. 3
performed by
David Helfgott

5:37 PM DST
Temp: 24` C
Humidity: 50%
Wind: S 19 mph
Barometric:101.5 kPa (v)

Sunrise 6:18 AM DST
Sunset 8:24 PM DST

Poles and wires against the sky.
Above the Table

Page by Page: A Woman's Journal
by Maggie Turner

Canadian Maggie Turner writes and publishes poetry, photography, and a personal journal online. Her work reflects the current way of life in Canada, embracing Canada's past, present, and future in a unique portrayal of everyday life. Maggie's voice is one of the many that actively depict the rich diversity of Canadian culture.

Photography: "a term which comes from the Greek words photos (light) and graphos (drawing). A photograph is made with a camera by exposing film to light in order to create a negative. The negative is then used in the darkroom to print a photograph (positive) onto light-sensitive paper.
Source: University of Arizona Glossary

Poetry: "a form of speech or writing that harmonizes the music of its language with its subject. To read a great poem is to bring out the perfect marriage of its sound and thought in a silent or voiced performance. At least from the time of Aristotle's Poetics, drama was conceived of as a species of poetry."
Source: Creative Studios

Journal: " "Though a journal may be many things - a treasury, a storehouse, a jewelry box, a laboratory, a drafting board, a collector's cabinet, a snapshot album, a history, a travelogue..., a letter to oneself - it has some definable characteristics. It is a record, an entry-book, kept regularly, though not necessarily daily.... Some (entries) will be nearly illegible, written in the dark in the middle of the night.... Not only is it a record for oneself, but of oneself. Every memorable journal, any successful journal, is honest. Nothing sham, phony, false...." (Dorothy Lambert from Ken Macrorie's book, Writing to be Read )
A journal is a way to keep track of your thoughts about what you read... as well as what you did on any given day."
Source: Journal Writing

A Blog is an online journal created by server side software, often hosted by a commercial interest.

"The term "weblog" was coined by Jorn Barger[4] on 17 December 1997. The short form, "blog," was coined by Peter Merholz, who jokingly broke the word weblog into the phrase we blog in the sidebar of his blog Peterme.com in April or May 1999.[5][6][7] Shortly thereafter, Evan Williams at Pyra Labs used "blog" as both a noun and verb ("to blog," meaning "to edit one's weblog or to post to one's weblog") and devised the term "blogger" in connection with Pyra Labs' Blogger product, leading to the popularization of the terms."
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_blogging

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