Secret

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A bottle of grains flung in the sand

harvest moon pregnant with damp

a world of murmurs subsiding to buzz

autographs given with minimum fuss

I wonder where all unspeakable is kept

in what tangle of lies it is wrapped

I wonder when we shall be whole

when the ravenous beast is full.

This is an experiment with near-rhymes or slant-rhymes, which are words that almost rhyme but not quite.  As a very auditory person (I used to record lessons in high school, so that I could learn them better), I love playing around with rhymes and rhythms. I usually do far too little of that in my poetry.

This is the 100th poem that I’m posting to this blog – my hundredth poem since I started writing again in February 2012.  It may not feel like much, an average of 5 a month, but it is such an improvement to my previous (zero) output! I can also report a change in attitude towards poetry. I used to think of it as a form of procrastination (to avoid having to deal with my novel). But I have now come to love it in its own right, to actually work at it and try out new things.  In no small part, thanks to such a fantastic group as the dVerse Poets, so I’m dedicating my 100th poem to them.

Something Old, Something New…

Now that the Chinese government has told us in NO UNCERTAIN TERMS that the world is not going to end on the 21st of December, I can safely plan my ‘summary of just 2012’ blog post. Rather than having to summarise the whole history of Earth and human beings.

Out with the old, in with the new is what always comes to mind as the year changes.  So I shall follow the good old wedding traditions and find something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue to list as my highlights for the year 2012.

1) Old

I have rediscovered my pleasure for writing this year, especially for reading and writing poetry, which I haven’t done since high school.  Writing is an old passion of mine, but I have been very clever at avoiding it (at least in its fully creative guise) over the past decade or more.  So, welcome back, old friend, sit down and tarry a while.  It’s such a pleasure to have you here with me!

2)  New

Joining the online community through blogging and book reviewing and connecting with other, much better writers than myself.  There is so much to learn here, so much to enjoy, especially on storytelling sites such as Cowbird,  that I am afraid I am spending far too much time reading other people’s work and not concentrating nearly enough on my own. I have also discovered a genuine community and mutual support system here, which was unexpected and moving.

3) Borrowed

I will borrow my own review of the Top 5 Crime Reads of my year from over at Crime Fiction Lover. But while you’re there, you may want to check some of the other Top 5 picks by my fellow reviewers.  They are all very knowledgeable about crime (fiction, of course). I have certainly added substantially to my already formidable TBR mountain.

4) Blue

No, I am not going to finish on a sad note, about what has made me blue this year.  Instead, since blue is my favourite colour, I will tell you about some of my best discoveries this year. I was going to do it in images, but this antiquated desktop can’t seem to cope with that.

– The beauties of France: its settings, its history, its (contemporary, rather than what I read in school) literature

Peirene Press – beautiful editions of world literature in translation (with a pronounced Teutonic flavour), as well as an interesting business model based on subscription and community-building

– There is more to skiing than racing madly downhill – I have also learnt cross-country skiing and snow-shoeing this year

– That maybe I do need a cat to complete my happiness after all. We befriended a friend’s cat at the weekend and now I want one just like her!

– Online reading challenges.  I intend to participate in a couple this coming year: Translation Reading Challenge (particularly from cultures that I know next to nothing about) hosted by Curiosity Killed the Bookworm and the Global Reading Challenge, to be hosted by Mysteries in Paradise.

So, what have been your highlights this year? And what do you intend to keep on doing in the New Year, or what do you intend to start afresh?