Present-tense free write

With some future thoughts.

The kitten blinks shadow and yellow green,
a paw rests on me while we both sleep
the bumps on my arms – some scar, some
small boil, some keratosis are all
associated with hairs so slight as to
not be seen, but still stuck, a road map
around my body that flakes and reds, and
I do not know if it is a road not taken,
left to wander into dust and sheets.
Costumers costume, guess the decade,
a new dress and kit every day a-walking
in the village – kirtle and dress with long
slit sides, you know the half-century
by the width of waist in the long years
before the corset lounge in harsher cloth
while sweet silks greet stays in first bustle,
second, are we at the 1890s yet? I can guess
centuries, maybe monarchies, but rarely the right
decade, my sewing days are shorter now, and my
eyesight, too – when the thread breaks,
the glasses must come off, and in I lean
the better to see me with. More light,
more, a task lamp for progressives. Snip
the threads and consider a haircut – it
would be so easy to ruin my fabric scissors
along with my bangs. We all grow out.
Nails need clipping, mine, and the cat’s.
Mine are easier – softer, even as I scrub
and moisturize and scrub again. It’s the
home soap, I’m sure, not the commercial stuff.
My nails never looked so good. They’ll
have to go, of course, when I work again,
If there’s work again. A siren in the distance
there’s fewer today, as sparse as planes.
The hummingbirds seem louder with their
whirs. Sugar syrup calls. Winter ratio is four
in one, and Summer is five, to disengage the
yellow-jackets. Five, then, with a long simmer,
brown-sugared syrup for the wee birds with
blood-fire necks. And peanuts for the
crows and mohawked jays. I know the nest
is this year – that tall fir, yes? Our crows
perch in the top branches so high, and come
by for snacks at odd times, swoop in before
the squirrels, before the jays, there must
be fledglings there, and weeks yet before we
know. Blue eyes for the young ones, red mouths.
An egg, hard-boiled for them, and the shell for tomatoes.
It’s starting time for us all.

Na/GloPoMo Day Twenty-Five asks us for a present-tense free write styled (or inspired) after James Schuyler’s Hymn To Life and a writing exercise developed by Hoa Ngyuen.

Freewrites are always a balance for me between letting my mind wander and maintaining a light guide. Sometimes it is more successful than others, but most times the connections made are not what I expected them to be. Sometimes, it’s just a wander.

3 thoughts on “Present-tense free write

    1. I’ve been putting off my writing until later and later. Perhaps I should recommit to a morning write. I am quite restless these days, and didn’t want to sit down for such a detailed prompt, although I enjoyed Schuyler’s work greatly.

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      1. I write in bed first thing in the morning, the minute I wake up. There is something about going right from dreams to writing that works for me. I go for as long as the animals will let me, get up and feed them, then write at my desk for the rest of the morning. It works like a charm for me.

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