Tag Archives: Writing

From Pen To Paper

It’s seems like an age since I sat down to write anything of substance, these last three weeks have been so busy.  Over the last three weeks I’ve put in almost 40 hours of CAD work on top of my daily job and teaching karate.  Needless to say it’s not left an awful lot of time for writing, I had so many ideas a few weeks ago, now I can hardly remember what they were, maybe I will come back to them one day.

I have still managed a couple of poems in that time, a couple of which I really connected with, firstly Never?

NEVER?

Is this you or I?

If I never fly
I will never come crashing down

If I never try
I will never fail

If I never love
I will never feel the pain

But consider this…

To never run
Is to never win the race

To never try

Is to never succeed

To never practice 
Is to never perfect

To never fail 

Is to never learn

To never fall
Is to never recover

To never let go

Is to never be free

To never hope
Is to never believe

To never love

Is to never live

I’m not sure quite how I was feeling when I wrote this, I’m not even sure whether I wrote it for myself or to just help others, but I believe every word of it.

And then secondly Release The Fear….

RELEASE THE FEAR

There are things buried
Deep within our stories
With a need for release
No one says it will be easy
To share our deepest
Is to face a fear
To fight a fear

Release the fear
And let it fly
Release it into the light
Where even the darkest shadows
Cannot hide
In the light it finds the truth
And there it becomes no more

The thing about Release The Fear, is the way I actually wrote it.  It wasn’t something that had been floating around my mind for a few days or a couple of lines that suddenly began speaking to me, that I then formed a poem around, these are usually the way in which I write my poems, but this one was completely different and probably received the most comments I’ve had for a poem in while.

It came about on Wednesday evening, as usual Wednesday is our Connect Group evening and I got to talk about my biggest fear when everything in my life collapsed a couple of years ago, the fear of how I would be perceived when people heard what I had become.  I feared being labelled, rather than being helped, I feared being shunned, rather than accepted, alas all those fears were for nothing, as I was more than accepted, my scars and sin, none of that mattered at all, only building the new me.  So I shared all those fears with my group, painful to recall though they can be, sometimes you just have to release them.

So when I came home, I prepared my Verse of the Day post and then sat down to write my journal, just as I normally would.  I wrote about the evening and my feelings, then in the last paragraph at the bottom of the page, I wrote what would become the poem Release The Fear.  Why I wrote this in the way I that I did, I honestly do not know.  I looked at it immediately after I had finished my entry and thought instantly I had to make this into a poem, but I was so tired I left it.  So Thursday evening I typed it out, I changed the words from my to our and there it was, almost verbatim that I had written the night before.

I’ve never written anything that was so fluent, where it wrote itself without any conscious input from myself, it just flowed from the pen to the paper like never before.

I’ve got another busy week ahead, so I’m not sure whether I’ll get chance to write much this week, but we’ll see.

I KNOW IT HURTS by ALTER BRIDGE
And you say this ain’t living
You say you can’t go on
They only take as you’re given
And now your hope is all but gone

Though you lost your way (now is not forever)
But I know your pain

We all fall sometimes you’re not the first
But I know it hurts
Yeah I know it hurts

In the end you’ll find what you deserve
Still I know it hurts
Yeah I know it hurts
Ohhhh…

And the tide’s only rising
The storm is on it’s way… yeah
But you can’t keep on fighting
So battleworn and so afraid

Though it’s sad and wrong
I hope you will remember
That you must carry on

We all fall sometimes you’re not the first
But I know it hurts
Yeah I know it hurts

In the end you’ll find what you deserve
Still I know it hurts
Yeah I know it hurts

There’s still tomorrow
Hold on
Hold on
There’s still tomorrow
Just wait
Just wait
There’s still tomorrow
Hold on
Hold on

We all fall sometimes you’re not the first
But I know it hurts
Yeah I know it hurts
In the end you’ll find what you deserve
Still I know it hurts
Yeah I know it hurts

Cataloguing My Feelings

When I first started writing poetry I used to sit down and try to write something.  Pick a theme or something and try to write around it.  I brought a couple of notebooks, to draft things out in, but I found many never left the pages, I just couldn’t get them to work, what I was writing I never had a connection with, it felt hollow and empty.  Some of these early efforts I posted, but even back then I knew I had no connection with them, there weren’t part of me, just me trying something different.

Yet there were a few early tries, which I thought were good, they were something a little different, like “Questions Of Faith”, it seemed when I wrote about my feelings or my faith, things changed, then a connection was made and the writing was a lot easier and I was far more confident in posting these than any others.

When I started writing poems, I wrote each finished one up in a book, with an index, a catalog of my efforts.  But for some reason last September I just stopped doing it.  I’m not sure why, I know I was getting towards the last few pages of my book, but I had brought another one ready to continue in, yet I just stopped writing them in my book.

Then came October last year and my slip into depression.  Then my poems changed from just poems, to something else.

I’ve been trying to catch up with writing up my poems over this last week, whilst I’ve been off work, starting with those from late September through to early 2014.  I started using my poems as prayers, just laying down my thoughts and feelings, then it seemed that my next poem would come in the form as answer to the previous one.  Over these months there was this ongoing conversation with God, I would pray in a poem and then write out an answer in a poem, then write a response of hope.

The problem was I would just keep repeating this cycle, pray in despair, receive an answer, rejoice, then back to despair, an ongoing cycle which lasted a number of months,.

I’ve still got nearly fifty poems written from April this year through to my last poem “My Feet May Lead Where My Soul Doesn’t Want To Follow” to add to my book, I keep writing up a few each night, it’s a long process, some are quite long, yet others fairly short.

Some I remember writing vividly, I remember the exact time of day and where I was and exactly how I felt at the time of writing it.  Some were written in the early hours of the morning, when I just couldn’t sleep, it was like I needed to get something off my chest and this was the only way I knew.  Though others I just do not remember even writing, why I felt this way or where I was at the time.

I know my best writing comes from deep within, the deep feelings, though some of those I like the most are the darkest ones I have ever written, but I guess that makes them the most personal of all of them, maybe that’s why I feel the deepest connection to them.

I don’t write now just because I want to, I write because I need to.

WORD OF GOD SPEAK by KUTLESS
I’m finding myself at a loss for words
And the funny thing is it’s okay
The last thing I need is to be heard
But to hear what You would say

Word of God speak
Would You pour down like rain
Washing my eyes to see
Your majesty
To be still and know
That You’re in this place
Please let me stay and rest
In Your holiness
Word of God speak

I’m finding myself in the midst of You
Beyond the music, beyond the noise
All that I need is to be with You
And in the quiet hear Your voice

Word of God speak
Would You pour down like rain
Washing my eyes to see
Your majesty
To be still and know
That You’re in this place
Please let me stay and rest
In Your holiness
Word of God speak

Word of God speak
Would You pour down like rain
Washing my eyes to see
Your majesty
To be still and know
That You’re in this place
Please let me stay and rest
In Your holiness
Word of God speak

I’m finding myself at a loss for words
And the funny thing is it’s okay

Two Years Of The Bottom of a Bottle

It’s hard to believe that I actually started this blog two years ago today, well I started writing in preparation a week or so before, but I didn’t actually have the nerve to go live with my story.  I had looked at various blogging sites and searched on tips for blogging, I had written a number of posts which would form most of my early uploads, yet I sat on it all, hiding what it was I had to say to the world.

Then on the morning of Saturday 6th October 2012, I went for a walk, it was a normal Newark morning for October, cold and wet, nothing out of the ordinary, just another Saturday morning.  As always I walked with my iPod on, playing songs that I had heard many times before, then a song came on that changed everything, the lines of that song are the words in the banner at the top of this page, those words reduced me to tears and I felt I knew what I had to do, to take a leap of that precipice and tell my story, all the inner most thoughts, the embarrassing and shameful parts, everything, warts and all.

Since that Saturday evening when I posted that first post and about me page, I’ve added 950 posts including this one, in addition using 496 different songs by 142 different artists, not to mention hundreds of photos of sunrises, sunsets, Bible Verses and other random stuff.

I had never really written anything before starting this blog, I had started a journal earlier in the year, just a matter of days before I became sober, when I read back some of the entries I had written I actually surprised myself, obviously I further surprised myself when I started writing the numerous blog posts over the last two years.

One of the biggest surprises has been the fact I’ve posted 145 poems in that time also.  I hated poetry writing at school, I don’t think I had written a poem in almost 30 years when I tried my hand at a few poems.  I actually now dislike some of my early attempts, I feel back then I was trying to force out words just for the sake of it, rather now I only write poems when I have a strong feeling that the words are something more than my own thoughts.  Sometimes, I have to sit on them for a while, wait, think and pray on them before I decide to form a verse with them, but I have to say, I now longer doubt myself when I post my poems, not like I did in the early days, back then I was apprehensive about them, but not anymore.  Having said that, I don’t dislike all my early poems, there are a couple of my earliest that are among my favourites, but as I’ve said before there were many of those early ones I never really connected with, now I connect with them all.

It’s been a long journey over the last two years, with some ups and downs, but I have to thank everyone who has taken the time to read my posts, to like them and to comment on them.  I am especially thankful for every comment I get, I know I may not respond to them all, but believe me, I read them all and I’m extremely grateful for everyone of them, many have given me hope when times have been dark and kept me going with my writing when I was close to giving up, once again I thank you all.

I’m not sure what the next twelve months will bring for me and this blog, but for now I will keep writing and sharing my journey with you all.

But I guess the biggest shout of thanks should be sang to The Father, He has given me this story to share, He inspires my words and when I feel the most vulnerable He gives me the confidence to share.

SOVEREIGN LORD by KALLEY HEILIGENTHAL & WILLIAM MATTHEWS
Though I walk through the midst of my troubles
You fulfill your purpose in me
I lift my head from the dirt to see those eyes
I feel a peace in the wind to my surprise

You are sovereign Lord and I bless you
You are perfect in nature

Finding The Stream

Okay, so yesterday evening I had the urge to write something.  I had an idea, an idea I had been mulling over in my mind for a day or two, the premise I was looking to write about was grains of sand, the idea came from Psalm 139 vrs 17-18, which I recently posted.

So I did what I usually do in those situations, grab my phone and start typing into notepad, I also had Psalm 18 open on my laptop for further reference and inspiration, I was ready to go, I had my basic idea, now I just needed to put together the words.

But the first line that came out was:

When every tear falls
The earth will shake

From there, the rest just flowed, I don’t really know where from, the sand was forgotten, Psalm 18 was referenced, yet not really used.  These words to the poem “The Eternal Stream” simply flowed in a way that my poetry usually doesn’t.

I usually move things around, add in lines, change the format and make edits and alterations, but not this time, from writing to copying into this blog and posting, there was maybe one or two minor edits, but otherwise it was as written, a novelty for me, I was happy to just press publish.

Then I moved on, I didn’t really read it back until I read the comments I received this morning.  I’ve said before how I am a little insecure about my poetry, but even I was surprised by what it was that I had actually written.  I wrote just this week about my poetry and that generally how they tend to be memories of my journey or prayers and answers from the Lord, but for some reason this one feels different, I really don’t know why!

Personally I’m kind of thinking that it’s the best poem that I’ve written so far and that knowing what I’m like, I’m now going to put myself under pressure to out do it or even be tempted to just stop for a while.  I’m sure I won’t stop writing poems, I don’t think I will be allowed, after all I convinced this one was definitely not my words.

HOLY SPIRIT HAVE YOUR WAY by LEELAND
Long after the tears fall I’m still your child
I put down my defenses and lay down my pride
Love and forgiveness flow in deep and wide
So I run to you and surrender all!

As I lay down my life
And pick up my cross
What a joy it is to give my life away to you
All that I need,
All that I seek
Is You here with me
Holy Spirit have Your way in me!

In times of trouble, though trials may come
The rock of ages is standing strong
I’m fighting battles, but the war is won
So I’ll run to you and surrender all

As I lay down my life
And pick up my cross
What a joy it is to give my life away to you
All that I need,
All that I seek
Is You here with me
Holy Spirit have Your way in me!

More of You and less of me, God
More of You and less of me, God
More of You and less of me, God
More of You overflowing

As I lay down my life
And pick up my cross
What a joy it is to give my life away to you
All that I need,
All that I seek
Is You here with me
Holy Spirit have Your way in me!
Holy Spirit have Your way in me!

Poems Or Prayers

Earlier on in the year I seemed to have a barren spell with regard to poetry, I had the odd idea or lines, but couldn’t put anything together, very often I would forget them before I could even record them or if I did write it down, I just couldn’t get it to work, many times I just left everything half finished.

When I first started out trying my hand at poetry, I was very insecure about it, I was trying different things, different ideas, maybe trying too hard to form ideas with which I wasn’t particularly comfortable with, but gradually my poems formed into two areas, either covering my recovery from alcoholic to redeemed or just simply how I felt at the time.  I left behind just trying to make things out of my comfort zone and just seemed to write from the heart, rather than trying to force something out for the sake of it.

When things got a little dark towards the end of last year, then so did the poems, they were directly from where I was at the time, raw, but also real.

Then as I say things dried up, not that I wasn’t comfortable with what I was trying to write, I just couldn’t get my head into what I was trying to say, although I was in a good place mentally, I guess there was a period of drifting with things a little, maybe a time to not put too much pressure on myself after such a period of fighting so many things from my past.

Then a few weeks ago, I got the urge to finish all those half started poems, all those from the end of last year and earlier this year, everyone that was started was finished, some needed more thought than others, but when I picked them up again, they fell into place rather easily.

The response to some of my recent works have been extremely positive, not only in what I have written for myself, but that others have found comfort in the words also.

Some of the response to my poem Walk With Me on Sunday got me thinking yesterday morning as I walked to work, where do these words come from, are they mine?

As I have already stated, I tend to now write in two ways, about my journey or how I’m feeling.  But more often than not when I write about how I’m feeling, it tends to turn into a question and answer session between myself and God, it seems like I write out what is essentially a prayer I’m saying within my head, then I end it with answer from God to what I’m asking or how I’m feeling, simply….

I PRAY … GOD ANSWERS

When I write about my journey, particularly those early days when I came from the dark drinking, suicidal being, to move into the light and start a new walk, I feel I’m being reminded that whatever it is I feeling, however low I’m feeling or how hard I feel things are, that I just have to remember the miracles of those early weeks and what was done for me then, that if I can come through that, then how much more can I come through.

I can honestly say that I don’t feel insecure about writing poetry any more, now I see what I write as so much more.

HOW CAN YOU BE INSECURE ABOUT A CONVERSATION WITH GOD.

So, I guess I will keep writing, keep trying to inspire myself and hopefully others.

MULTIPLIED by NEEDTOBREATHE
Your love is like radiant diamonds,
bursting inside us, we cannot contain.
Your love will surely come find us, 
like blazing wildfires 
singing your name.

God of mercy, sweet love of mine,
I have surrendered to your design.
May this offering stretch across the skies,
these hallelujahs be multiplied.

Your love is like radiant diamonds,
Bursting inside us, we cannot contain.
Your love will surely come find us,
like blazing wildfires 
singing your name.

God of mercy, sweet love of mine,
I have surrendered to your design.
May this this offering stretch across the skies,
these hallelujahs be multiplied.

(Multiplied, Multiplied, Oh Multiplied)

God of mercy, sweet love of mine,
I have surrendered to your design.
May this this offering stretch across the skies,
these hallelujahs be multiplied.

These hallelujahs be multiplied.

Your love is like radiant diamonds,
bursting inside us, we cannot contain.
Your love will surely come find us,
like blazing wildfires singing your name. 

Missing Words

It seems so long ago since I wrote a piece of poetry, indeed it was way back on 17th November that I wrote Shelter, which was the day before I was prescribed anti-depressants by my Doctor.

Shelter was the last of three poems that I wrote within the space of two days, well I say days all three were written in the early hours, when I was unable to sleep, Mountains was posted at 1:38am and I Call Upon Your Name at 5:35am, both on 16th, then Shelter was the last posted at 1:32am on the 17th.

It may just be coincidence that my poetic side dried up when I went onto anti-depressants, but there has been a lack of artistic output since then.

I’ve had a few words go through mind, but nothing I’ve had the urge to write down and work with.

For a few weeks though, I’ve wanted to write an update to Mountains, a sequel of sorts, but I just haven’t got round to it, I know what I want to write I just don’t have the words, I can’t find them!

Then the other day something weird happened on my laptop, my screen saver scrolls through images with my favourite Bible verses, after I wrote Mountains I put the words on to a mountain image and added it to the gallery. But since Christmas Day, the words have disappeared from the image, just the mountains are were left, my words just vanished.

Tonight I’ve managed to get the words back on the image, so maybe I’ll find the rest of my words too.

Mountains

Mountains

Maybe a good walk in the morning may bring back my poetic side, hopefully!

DID YOU FEEL THE MOUNTAINS TREMBLE? by JESUS CULTURE & MARTIN SMITH
Open up the doors and let the music play
Let the streets resound with singing
Songs that bring Your hope and
Songs that bring Your joy
Dancers who dance upon injustice

Did you feel the mountains tremble?
Did you hear the oceans roar?
When the people rose to sing of
Jesus Christ the risen One

Did you feel the people tremble?
Did you hear the singers roar?
When the lost began to sing of
Jesus Christ the saving One

And we can see that God You’re moving
A mighty river through the nations
And young and old will turn to Jesus
Fling wide You Heavenly gates
Prepare the way of the risen Lord

Open up the doors and let the music play
Let the streets resound with singing
Songs that bring Your hope
Songs that bring Your joy
Dancers who dance upon injustice

Did you feel the darkness tremble?
When all the saints join in one song
And all the streams flow as one river
To wash away our brokeness

And here we see that God You’re moving
A time of Jubilee is coming
When young and old return to Jesus
Fling wide You Heavenly gates
Prepare the way of the risen Lord

Open up the doors and let the music play
Let the streets resound with singing
Songs that bring Your hope
Songs that bring Your joy
Dancers who dance upon injustice

We’re gonna dance in the river, yeah

Talent Or Gift? Gifted Or Talented?

OK, stay with me on this one, I will try to make some sense of this, as I try to explain my views on talented or gifted, I believe the two or somewhat completely different, but of course that is just my opinion, although you may not agree with my theory I hope you understand my logic.

I have received so many comments over the last few weeks, so many great comments that have commended my writing, my poetry and my photography, with many uses of the words talent/talented and gift/gifted, which got me to thinking are the two the same or are they different, I came to the conclusion that they were different and I believe very different.

To start by making sense of this I have to take you back to October 1980 and the six year old me, I had recently come out of hospital, having had my tonsils removed and had gone to watch my cousin at his karate class, I wasn’t old enough to join, at that time you had to be seven, I remember watching the class from the sidelines and then trying to replicate what they were doing, the instructor noticed me at the side and asked my Dad how old I was, he told him I was six but I would be seven in a few months, so the instructor, Alan Bainbridge, let me join in.

Needless to say, I wasn’t actually very good, I was actually pretty rubbish, when my first grading came around I just scraped a temporary grade, which is like a half pass, but you still get to wear your next belt, but if you don’t improve next time you stay the same belt.  I carried that temporary over the next few grades until I improved enough to get a grade and a half for a full pass.  I struggled along through the grades, although I never got another temporary grade I did fail my black belt twice, before passing on the third attempt.

So as I see it, I am not gifted at karate, I had no natural gift for any of it, but I am talented, I have achieved some great things, National Champion, competed at World and European level, but this is a talent I have had to work hard for, it wasn’t a gift, it wasn’t just there, I had to work hard for what I have achieved.

Over the years and as I went through the coloured belts and even as a junior black belt, there were many students that were better than I was, I wasn’t naturally gifted at karate, I had no natural talent for karate, I had to work hard.  But others came and joined the club that found it easy, they had a natural gift, they didn’t have to work as hard as I did to improve, I had trained for much longer than many, but I wasn’t as good, I probably never would be as good as they would be, they had a gift for it which made it easier for them.

But the thing is, that all those that had this natural gift, a gift which made it easier for their talent to show, gave up, they maybe got to black belt and then moved on to something else, I think that because they found it easy, the challenge wasn’t there for them, so they moved on to the next one, for me I wanted to be as good as them, so I trained harder and longer, but still fell short of the talent that their natural gift allowed them, but thirty years later, I am still there and I am the only one from the generation that trained alongside me from the 1980’s that is still training, I the least gifted of them all have worked hard to achieve my level of talent, a level that they never achieved, but could have.

So moving right on to 2013 and my writing, my poetry and my photography, many of the comments I have received have used the term gifted, now this time I agree with them, although I don’t believe I am gifted at karate, but I am talented, in terms of what I have achieved with my blog, I will say it is a gift.

Obviously when I was at school I had to write and we had to write poetry once in a while, but I had no interest in it, I wasn’t encouraged in it and didn’t embrace it, while I was at school I missed many English course work deadlines and just threw anything together just so I could hand something in, there was no gift or talent then, if there was I never found it.

But I first started to notice a gift for writing when I started my journal last year, I started my journal when I started my journey with God, between then and my school years I had written the odd letter at work, but that was about it, I never considered myself capable of writing anything.  But when I began to read back a few of my journal entries, within the first weeks of my sobriety, I couldn’t believe that I had actually written the entries myself, I know I did, but the writing just wasn’t me, I never even speak this way I had written many of the things I put in my journal, I was both intrigued and amazed at the fact I could actually write in a way I enjoyed reading.

This continued to happen the more I wrote, the more I enjoyed reading what I had written. Then I had the crazy idea to start a blog, which I then promptly forgot about for a week, then I decided again that I would do it, I made a list of things to write about and prepared many of my earlier articles, then another week went by, although I had made a start, I was still no closer to creating the blog itself, I made my usual excuses as to why I couldn’t, the self-doubt took over, then as you may have read in my first post “The Precipice”, God challenged me to start this blog, so I went home and created it there and then.

I love the writing in my earlier posts, not that I don’t like what I write now, but when I read these older posts now and my early journal entries, I realise that this ability to write only came to be when I started a journey with God, it was a gift, it had to be, I hadn’t developed my writing over a number of years, like my karate, I just started writing and the words where there, there is no real talent there, just a gift, the most incredible gift from God.

The same goes for the poetry, I don’t see it as a talent, again I see it as a gift, it’s not something I have work hard at, I just write when the words are there, that’s not talent, the words are a gift.

In terms of the photography, there are sunrises every morning, it’s just that we mostly miss them as we go about our morning routines, I just point the camera at what I see, it’s not really a talent as I see it, I don’t study the light or invest in a great camera to get the best pictures, I don’t put in effort to become talented at it, but the gift is the timing, I have been blessed to arrive at that very moment and just capture what I see, regardless of the quality of the camera or my ability as a photographer, the gift is the timing and the beauty of the sun rises I am privileged to see.

Maybe these gifts for writing and photography have always been there, but I never looked for them or maybe when I started this journey with God I was gifted these abilities so I could tell me story, otherwise it may have been just put away in the most untidiest of minds.

I think that we all have at least one gift, whoever we are, we all have one thing that we are gifted at, it’s just a shame that so many people never get the chance to find theirs, whatever it may be there is something in all of use waiting to show itself.

So I see it like this, to say we have a talent is to say we have worked hard to become good at what we do, we have worked and developed that talent, sometimes from the most disastrous of beginnings, to be the best that WE can be.

To say we are gifted is to say that these aren’t talents we have worked hard to develop, it’s to say that this is something we are good at with little effort, we just try it and find it easy.

That’s not to say that we can’t be both gifted and talented, we can of course take that gift and make it a talent, not just rely on the gift we have received, but to work on it even harder to improve the level of talent, remember those fellow students of mine that never fully developed their talent, they missed out on the great things that I have done in my karate career, did they travel to Australia to compete at the World Championships, no they wasted their gift.

I love the gifts I now have, although I don’t see myself earning a living from them, I do intent to embrace them and work on them to improve my talent, not just rely on the gift.

Do you envy the gifts that others have, resenting how hard you are working to improve your own talent?  Then you have it all wrong, be encouraged by the gift other possess and use it to inspire improvements it your own talent, then maybe you will take a trip that those with the gift could only dream of.

Do you have gift that you aren’t using?  Are you like that unopened Christmas present that remains in a box unused, the packaging may look uninteresting and of little use, but inside there maybe something wonderful ready to come out.

So what are you, are you talented or gifted?

I wish we all could win
I wish we all could smile
I wish we all could make our mothers proud
(Something by The Afters)

Why Can’t I Write, It’s My Night Off!!!!

Due to the resurfacing of one of the sports halls at the Leisure Centre, tonight’s karate classes were cancelled, which is great, I get a night off for once, I don’t have to rush down my tea and shoot off for 2½ hours of teaching, yeah, I can write, I can write loads, I can spend the night writing poem after poem, oh yes.

OH NO!!!!!

A big fat creative nothing, all day I’ve had words and phrases pinging around my head that sounded great and lots of ideas as I went about my work, I was so excited to have a night off and spend it writing.

But almost as soon as I got home I fell asleep, until a knock at the door awoke me, then after tea I watched the end of Senna, the documentary about Ayrton Senna, Ben had put it on before I got home, then I picked up one of my notepads, tried to write, nothing, then I picked up my phone, thinking I’d tap it straight into there, nothing would come together, nothing I was happy with, so I went back to sleep.

It seems if I really feel like I want to write, I can’t no matter how much I really want too, if I try to force it out it the word just won’t appear.

The only thing I can write about in these moments, is about not being able to write about something!  How stupid is that, it’s happened before and it’s happened again.  I had some great ideas, but zilch, just this ramble about not being able to write!

Like wise, having written this post, it came to the part where I would usually post a song to go along with the content, well the creativity or lack of it in my tired brain couldn’t find one to fit, so I share this one, simply because I like it and to be honest it fits with yesterday’s post: Finding The Peace From Within The Chaos, much better than this one, so please enjoy.

Even if the healing doesn’t come
And life falls apart
And dreams are still undone
You are God
You are good
Forever faithful One
Even if the healing
Even if the healing doesn’t come
(Even If by Kutless)

Walking Words

I started writing this post back on Friday 14th December 2012, part way through the news of the tragic events of that day hit me, I abandoned this post and wrote What & Why, but today as I reorganise my site and add a poetry section, I think it’s time to retrieve the post, so here goes.

OK, ok, I’m not sure where this new urge came from, just over two months ago I started writing articles in preparation for starting this blog, well before I posted my first blog “The Precipice” on 6th October 2012, now I’ve started posting poetry, rather than just the ramblings and shenanigans of my sobriety, struggles and life in general.

Why?

Well, as I walk many things ping around my mind, if I am troubled by something I go through it in depth, prepare words or action and most importantly pray about it.  Sometimes I think I just daydream, sometimes of situations I may have to face, other times just random stuff, I am the worlds greatest daydreamer, so inevitably over time I have created some absolute garbage and some, if I don’t say so myself, literary genius (my own opinion, not fact).

The problem is, forever it has remained within the walls of mind, before being lost in the fog of random rubbish, random information that is useful for nothing but pub quizzes (which I’m quite good at, by the way).

So once I had decided on starting this monster that has become my blog, I made a list of subjects where I wanted to investigate my feelings further.  I started writing about a week before I created this, I had a list of over 30 posts and had already written five of them.

Many of those posts were prepared whilst walking, I went through the basic feelings and outline of each post as I walked, then I started the post later when I get home.  It isn’t so important to remember the words for these posts, just the feelings, the words just come as I tap in to those feelings.

But poetry has been a completely different process and indeed more difficult.  Sometimes words just come, I would say we have all written a song or poem in our head, as we go about our daily mundane life, but how many actually write it down, I didn’t, so great words are lost now, gone forever.

I get words or sentences which I like, I try to work a format out to work within, then add to it, sometimes keeping within that framework, at other times abandoning it as it takes on a life of it’s own.

Words can be hard to come by, some I write and then just leave, I can’t finish them the way I want, I have many like that already, sometimes at random moments I get the inspiration and the words to finish them, so I do and once I’m happy I post.

My Blog posts I hold no shame about, I have no reservations about clicking that publish button, but poetry always seems different, I am insecure, I mean really insecure about posting my poetry, I don’t know why, but I have to fight to click that button, I’ve even closed my eyes and clicked, odd isn’t but that’s the way it happens, I guess poetry opens my soul deeper than I thought.

All the poetry I’ve posted is my own work, after all who would want to claim it anyway, but it’s me, it’s my heart and my soul pouring out, it scares me, but I do it, it’s part of breaking out of that shell of shyness I’ve cocooned myself in for so long.

Thank you for taking the time to read, to like and to comment, it really does help to keep writing and breaking the chains of my insecure self.

And this song to accompany this post is, City On The Hill by Casting Crowns, enjoy.

You see, the poets thought the dancers were shallow
And the soldiers thought the poets were weak
And the elders saw the young ones as foolish
And the rich man never heard the poor man speak
(City On The Hill by Casting Crowns)

I guess the lyrics above have just answered my own insecurity, the line “And the soldiers thought the poets were weak” it’s just me isn’t it, the supposedly tough karate guy, he’s not supposed to write poetry, that’s for the weak, well not anymore, I’m bigger than that now, I’m breaking out.

Lacking Inspiration

As I sat at home this lunchtime with an hour to spare I felt I really wanted to start preparing a post, but I was struggling. I wanted to write, but I couldn’t think if a subject, nevermind any words. I didn’t really have time to switch on the laptop (it’s a very cluttered slow old beastie), on there is a list of topics I want to write about, I could remember some those titles, but couldn’t find any inspiration to write about any of them, I was a little lost, so I closed my eyes, held my phone upon which I would draft the post tightly in my hand, then I prayed, I prayed for some inspiration, I was just about to give it up as a bad job when this post started to write itself in my head, so I grabbed my phone and started the process of drafting a post.

So here it is really, the subject is simply about writing my posts, the process is not always the same, the content can vary, but the heart it is draw from is constant.

The Process

This post follows the process I usually use when I’m out and about, when I’m out and I want to post about where I am, I start drafting the post on my phone, then when I get home, I finalize it on the laptop, proof read it and then add the music video to it, before uploading it, I’ve only used this process a few times, but it works for me.

Some posts have been written for some time, I have about three already drafted on my laptop, but I’m not really happy with them, they await further inspiration before completion, when I feel I want to post them, I’ll revisit them, embellish and post them, these are all on the list of subjects I have prepared, many of that list are still to be drafted, but at times I’ll just sit down and write a few at a time.

Other times I look at the list, start typing on a subject off the list or on a subject that has been inspired by the days events, I just type it, check it, add the video and post it, job done.

The Content

The main content is my journey from lost alcoholic to sober Christian, my thoughts on my drinking and my journey with God, other posts just focus on the days events and some on my past, so you the readers can build up general image of who I am.

Karate has been a major part of my life, 32 years I have been training now, I started at six years old and I am still at it. I also love writing about the humorous moments that have shone through the darkness in my life.

The Heart

I write, I hope, straight from the heart, I don’t want to hide anything. My journey has been painful, but also special, it’s contained some fantastic moments, moments I feel compelled to share. My hopes are that if others can see where I was at the beginning of 2012 and where I am now, they can take some inspiration from my story, take some of the positives and rebuild their own lives.

Some posts are bleak, I know, the subject matter is painful, my memories are painful, but I always try to end the post on a positive, I want you readers to see how I’ve turned it all around, to celebrate with me, not to pity or feel sorry for me, I am dealing with all of this and I am turning the corner, I am winning this fight.

Music is a very big part of my recovery process, my music is all from Christian artists and inspirational music, I always try to find a piece of music that fits either the subject matter or the solution, either way I try to find a lyric video where possible. I have a few posts drafted where I can’t find the youtube video I want, so I am waiting until I get the time to find out how to make one myself, so those posts will have to wait a while, but I promise I will get round to it.

I have never really written anything before, I wrote essays at school, but I would struggle to fill two A4 pages, no matter how big I tried to write. I used to draft the odd letter at work, mainly they followed standard templates, but again a couple of A4 pages, with lots of waffle and repetitive lines.

I started writing a journal a few days before my sobriety, I have an A4 book where I write at least one page each night, recapping my thoughts, feelings and actions from the day, most days it is just one page, my record was six pages on the day of my Baptism. I read these pages at random some days and can’t help feeling a little impressed with what I’ve written, not so much the content, but the way I’ve written it, I never speak that way.

It’s the same with these blog posts, I have been blown away by not just the comments on my story, but the comments on my writing style, both from fellow bloggers and friends who read it, I didn’t know I could write this way, I’m not sure where the words and sentences flow from sometimes, as I’ve said I don’t usually talk that way, I’m sure some of you would never understand if wrote the way I talk, if I started using our colloquial Nottinghamshire lingo, you know things like “tar duck” (thank you my friend) etc, you would be lost, here in Nottinghamshire we don’t actually speak like Kevin Costner in Robin Hood!

I thank you all for all of your words of inspiration, your fantastic comments and just being here with me on my journey out of the darkness.

We are the bold, united souls
We live to win another victory
Our sacred scars show who we are
And tell the story of our memories
(We Are One by 12 Stones)

I hope and pray that those of you either walking the same journey through sobriety or those that may be trying to find the strength to start that journey or those on a different journey out of whatever darkness clouds their lives, will continue to travel with me, let’s see this through to the end, together we can all make it.