Quaritry? Poetry and Quarintine

So its day 50 or so of shelter in place and cleaning yeilded som nice results. Namely, I found an old notebook with poetry on it. Below is a rediscovered poems of mine that I slightly retools.

Untitled

Forgotten roadways taste, seven states out of home . Let’s stop here. He says. It looks nice. He says. rusted out, din down shack of a restaurant, with an “I” burnt out, but no cover charge for me. Women are always free. We don’t see many girls. (Off stage) I don’t smile. You here for the show or the food. I’m starving. Both. He says.
Plastic tits. Artificial, wanna-be twelve year old cats bounce out of time to the nineties grunge. Now, I understand Cobain. hashbrowns and pancakes please. And some clothes.
What would you suggest? Everything’s good here. (if you know what she means hint, hint). Toast, butter, two eggs, sunny-side up, honey. Isn’t this amazing? Yes, hope dreams of undercooked eggs.
Fog machine fire, dizzy neon burnt-out. Spinning. Tan-hidden cellulite, forming to the poles.
Burnt hole through head, his eyes caught a starring look.
I’m starving.
Aren’t you glad we got away from everything? It’s nice to have a chance to escape it all, if only for a while…do us well
Uh-huh. I think we should hit the Keys first, don’t you. I hear the sand there is beautiful. Did you hear me?
Hey you.
I look down (b-cup blues).

Back story of poem

During my senior into year year of college, I experienced my first serious relationship. One of those immediately connected, the world can never stop us, this is true love things. Of course after a year of and a half and a haphazard engagement, like many things that burn too brightly, it fizzled.

A co-worker of mine suggested a road trip down to the Keys. I left broken-hearted, hoping for a vacation from life, only to find myself stuck in a car for two weeks with a friend, who decided this trip was going to be the start of our epic romance…. it was not.

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Quaratine: Is this madness

Every night I fall asleep later.

10

11

12

1

2

I procrastinate. I wait. I find at midnight that I’ve lost my jump drive, and even though everything is saved onto my laptop, I must clean the kitchen, then the bed room, the bathroom, anywhere until I find it.

As Monday bleed to Tuesday.

Or is it Friday.

Does it matter anymore?

heavy eyes give in. I lose

myself

in dreams.

Always the same dream.

Sometimes I’m 17, or 25 or 34.

Sometimes I don’t even know.

But there I am walking down the hallway. Step by Step.

junior –

no senior year.

A decison

already made

books burning in my hands.

I don’t know about what.

Maybe it’s just lunch.

My blood pumping drowns voice around me.

Thud-Thump

Thud-thump.

Maybe it matters.

My legs grow roots into the…

Maybe it–

Eyes opened

No,

it must be wednesday.

Laundry day is wednesday.

 

Advice, create create create

It’s been a while hasn’t it? I’d like to say that I’ve spent my time away from the blogger-sphere creating, unfortunately it’s been much more mundane than that…surviving if you will. (I’d say living but that implies a certain zest that these droll winter months haven’t much afforded me.)

But this morning, a deary day with nipping hints of Persephone’s legacy swirling around my face, I stumbled upon this and decided today would be a beautiful day to rededicate myself to writing  and to the world at large.

In short, I’m back. And if you have had a creative drought or are feeling your work isn’t up to par, please take a minute a listen to the video below.

A minute can reset your life after all.

(throw back) Saturday morning

Sitting here at work, way to early on a Saturday, I’m reminded of a piece I wrote a copy of years ago, when I was struggling with that post-graduate, job-you-love-some-aspects-of-but- you-feel-doesn’t-work-you-to-your-full-potential experience.  This fist appeared in Illinois State University’s literary journal, Euphemism:

The flip side of a copy

Rachael Stanford

Time moves slowly when you’re a glorified copy wench. As the pale glow of replication illuminates the growing wrinkles adorning my face, the realization slowly sinks in. A train monkey could take my place, not a NASA rocketeering monkey either but a sleep-most-of-the-day in between poo-flinging one.

As the minutes tick to the void, my eyes scan the room. I want to rip down the OSHA poster, burn it to the ground, screaming to my coworkers, “six years, two degrees, honors societies and publications have to amount to more than paper cuts. And sleepless nights slaved away with library crammed house should amount to more than a no-benefits, crap-dollar an hour pay.”  I want to start anew.

A battled scared vet returning to a reformed nation, I find myself longing to be lost in The Wasteland, strung out and strung up in a hotel full of beatniks and hippies hell bent on filling the worlds with flowers.  But the best minds of my generation are wasting away in cheaply pressed suits, long retail hour eyes wearied, as their back breaks with the loans on which their future was built/destroyed.  And my rent is due in a week.

The copy machine spits out my order. As my hands shake, I pick up each warm piece, permeating my skins. But my bones shake as I turn out the light and slowly walk away, each step echoing down the hallway.

I’m not dead, I’m just a mommy…..

Just a quick note at work, I realize this last year that I have very sadly let this blog go downhill. (What can I say motherhood has kicked my artistic ASS). But on the plus side, my amazing illustrator is making progress on our children’s book, I have a youtube series in the work and I’m finely writing poetry again. So please bare with me as I slowly work my  way back to artistic glory or at least.  And until that way, enjoy a progress sketch of Monster’s Don’t Hugs.

Alfie

Peace n Love,

Rach

Out of the ashes, I rise with my blonde hair……

I’m coming upon the year anniversary of my father’s death. And what has been, for a lack of a better term, the least productive year artistically of my life.

I was depressed about it. Lost, one could say in the volume of silence, the abyss of nothingness.

That was until yesterday when in a passing conversation with my fiance’s dad, I mentioned that I had previously been a math major.

“Math major, pshhh. Let me see those grades. You had to be failing that is the ONLY reason that anyone would switch from math to English…..”

Enraged, I took my grievance to social media where I got a bevy of responses similar to:

“Why would you do that????? He’s right. Don’t you know companies are poaching math and science high school teachers…..”

A rekindled fire burned with in me.

Why would I switch from Math to English?

Very simply, when it came down to studying for my Cal final freshman year of college, I decided instead to watch Young Guns.

Yes the 1980’s brat-pack western.

And it dawned on me, I was good at math, oh I was, (got a high A in the course) but I wasn’t passionate about it. I didn’t stay up late at night to study or work on math, but I sure as heck did for writing.

I have railed in previous posts about how much art matters, but have, through the course of the last year, partly forgotten how passionate I am about it.

His words, though, and others fuel my fire. Art matters. My art matters. You’re art matters.

And don’t let anyone tell you otherswise.

Now, where is my pen, do I dare to disturb the universe?

Because a vote for me is a vote for humanity (ok not really but please vote)

Torrid Literature published my poem, We is, this summer and is now having a contest for their literary hall of fame. If you would be so kind to vote for me, that would be awesome. I’m on page three, Rachael Stanford, We is. You can vote

A vote for me, is well, a vote for me. :)

A vote for me, is well, a vote for me. 🙂

We is by Rachael Stanford

We
Is

Laughing at linguists who
could never comprehend

though the space between our
fingertips

is wider than the Grand Canyon
the barren plains punctuating
I forge, unashamedly naked
The bitter November winds
lick my flesh

We is

Enveloped in blurred realities
Of your memories, warmed by the linger
Touch of your flesh, a permanent tattoo

I run, unwavering by demons of doubt
A happy toddler, each step in you

A cosmos
We.

Thanks again for the vote, I’m happy to return the favor!

marching towards the light, erasure poem by Rachael Stanford (Half New Year Poetry Series)

My poem is live,check it out 🙂

Silver Birch Press

stanford_erasure
marching towards the light
by Rachael Stanford

My dream — wearing a wedding dress
it didn’t fit, the hem was caked
with dried mud, a tattered veil

he, a dank cave,
an old fashioned white cloth
half woven

and he was staring right at me,
like I was a TV program,
he’d been waiting for.

My dream-self was slow
taking in the stalactite ceiling,
the stench of growling
bleating sounds that echo from behind
blocking the room’s only exit — a cavern
beyond.

“please I don’t have the strength,
you have to hear me!”

SOURCE:  Percy Jackson and the Olympians Book Two : The Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan (Hyperion Books, 2006).

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: This poem is based on a page from a Percy Jackson YA novel. In writing the poem, I wanted to retain the original feel of the page but change and tweak it to elicit…

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The spastic love child of Axl Rose and Sylvia Path

tesla_meLast week was the week I said, I was going to release my E-Book. Then I ended up getting called in for an interview for teaching a playwriting class and realized that I had an erasure poem I wanted to submit and the deadline was fast approaching…

so last week was not the week.

But as Scarlett O’Hara, a heroine that I despise would say, “tomorrow is another day.”

So barring anything crazy, this week will be the week.

But back to the erasure poem, I received work yesterday that it will be included in the project (I’ll post more later.) (I also got the job teaching kids play-writing! expect a blog on that later.)

I’m super excited. This was my first attempt at an erasure poem.  Erasure poems, for those who don’t know, is  a form of found poetry or found art created by erasing words from an existing text in prose or verse and framing the result on the page as a poem.

The project is going to be available on Silver Birch Press.

I found this sort of work, freeing in its constrictions. The project had a specific constraints on the topic as well as the page number you could pick. It was a puzzle for the artistic mind!

It also helped with my writer’s block. 🙂 I really do suggest it for people who can’t think of anything to write or who like to pretend like me that they are visual artists as well.

I think I might take a few books and just have at it. Who knows maybe I’ll come up with