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All posts for the month August, 2012

Sing it Out!

Published August 19, 2012 by Laitie

I’ve been thinking a lot about singing lately. It was sparked a month or so ago while I was reading The Royal Diaries: Eleanor, Crown Jewel of Acquitaine. I noticed, while reading, that they would sing a lot. But y’know what else? Eleanor never mentioned if the singing was good or bad. Never said if the person’s voice was beautiful or horrid. Only about how much fun they were having.

Today, all we do is care about how good the singing sounds. If you don’t sound good, you can’t sing. I have a friend that has always told me that I was off key when I was singing, or doing something else wrong. This made it obvious she couldn’t stand my singing. Her excuse is that she’s been in music all her life so she has perfect pitch. But that doesn’t mean she has a right to tell me not to sing.

I went to Renn Fair this weekend. Everyone sang and just had a good time. No one cared if you were actually good at singing or not. A long time ago, it was no big deal. A long time ago, you could be the worst singer in the world and no one cared because you and they were just having fun. Today, all we care about is good singing. It’s sad, really. Singing is a lot of fun. But even among friends, if you can’t sing, you shouldn’t. We idolize the “good” singers. They end up in drugs and alcohol.

Singing is just as much a personal expression as writing, drawing, painting, dancing, etc. But if you’re not good at any of that, it’s decided by society that you shouldn’t do it. I think that’s what the use of the word “can’t” is all about. I don’t draw well, so I “can’t” do it. Someone else doesn’t write well, so they “can’t” do it. On and on it goes.

Well, I’m going to let anyone sing, no matter how bad their voice sounds. I’m going to sing my heart out whenever I want to. Because there’s nothing wrong with sound different from others. There’s nothing wrong with not being as “good” as others. It’s perfectly fine and what makes the world so interesting and beautiful. Sing your heart out, people! You deserve it!

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A Safe Place

Published August 17, 2012 by Laitie

“We will talk about it when she brings it up, but not before,” Jerry said, deciding on the complete wrong way to deal with the situation. But it was well known that he didn’t really like the girl, anyway, so Amber decided to keep silent. Christopher, Nefertiti, and Imelda nodded obediently. The two little girls went out to play, and Chris made his way to the basement to wait for her.

It was a couple hours later, when the girls were sunbathing in the lawn and Amber had gone home, until Maria showed up. She wore jeans and a three-quarter-sleeved sweater, despite the sweltering heat of the day. “MARIA!” the girls exclaimed, running up to her. Maria grinned and greeted the girls with as much enthusiasm as she could muster. Either the girls didn’t notice a difference, or Jerry and Amber had told them not to say anything.

“Hey, girls,” Maria said with a grin. “How are you two?”

“Good!” they said in unison. “We missed you!”

Maria giggled. “I missed you, too. And Nef, your brother wants you to visit, soon.” It hurt to talk about Sven, but she did promise she’d tell his sister that he missed her.

“I’ll ask Jerry,” Nef said certainly. Despite what she heard about him, she still missed her big brother.

“Well, I have to go see Chris,” Maria said. “You two have fun.” She waved good-bye to the girls and headed inside. She ignored Jerry as she passed him in the living, and he ignored her. She went straight for the stairs, and went down into the basement. “Hey, Chris,” she said quietly. Weakly. Chris just looked over at her solid form. He stared over her ebony, curly hair and mocha skin. He didn’t know what to say to those black, begging eyes. His longing to take her in his arms and kiss those full lips wasn’t strong enough to take away the fact of what had happened. “How are you feeling?”

“Like a train wreck,” he said, a little too harshly than he intended. Maria flinched at the words.

“I’m really sorry, Chris. I—”

“Yeah? I’m sorry, too. I’m sorry I ever got involved in your shit!” Maria flinched again.

“Chris, I–”

“Just go!” He couldn’t take looking at her. Staring at the cause of his blood and bruises. The one person that made his heart race in passion. Who was she to him? She should be nobody. Jerry had made that clear enough.

Maria sighed and turned towards the stairs.

“I’m sorry, Chris,” she said softly. “If it…makes you feel any better…I left him. For good.” Now she just needed a place to spend the night. God knew where she would go. It was obvious she wasn’t going to be welcome at Chris’.

She frowned when there was no response, and headed back up the stairs. She met Jerry’s gaze before heading out. Maybe Amber would let her stay. But she barely knew her. She didn’t want to impose like that. No, she had to head back into the city. Even a dirty, smelly alley would offer some protection.

She thought back on the day’s events as she walked. The fists, the anger, the yelling, the screaming. Chris’ face before he passed out. The realization that Jerry saved Chris’ life. The realization that Sven, her Sven, was that close to actually killing him. And she had been so helpless. She couldn’t even fight off the thug holding her back. All she could do was cry and yell.

Her mind turned to the events at the Inn. Where she and Sven fought, again. Where his fists weren’t done hitting. Where she ended up cowering in the corner. Where they shared the most passionate kiss they’d ever had.

Maria shook her head. No. She couldn’t fall for him again. Again? She was still in love with him. More than anything, all she wanted right now was him. To crawl into his arms and listen to him whisper in her ear. She sighed. The smell of roasted chestnuts made her look up. She found herself in front of the steps of St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

St. Patrick’s? How long had she been walking? She bit her lip before walking up the steps. Churches took in homeless people, right? At least for the night? She glanced over at the setting sun. They had to. She had nowhere else to go. She walked into the intimidating building. Thousands of candles lined the walls, emanating the scent of burning wax throughout the building that mixed with the scents of old stone and wood. There were lines after lines of pews. The alter looked miles away from her. The walls were tall, making the ceiling feel even further away than the alter. She almost got dizzy looking up at it.

“Miss?” Maria jumped at the voice. She turned to see a nun staring at her. “Do you need help, dear?”

“Uhm…yeah,” Maria said. “Can I…well…I have a lot going on.”

“Come with me,” the nun said gently. “We’ll get you something to calm your nerves. You’re in a safe place, now.”

Maria watched the nun walk away for a few minutes before following. A safe place. She almost grinned at her relief.

Spark Sentence: I’m not saying he’s a bad guy, but he’s no hero.

Published August 14, 2012 by Laitie

“I’m not saying he’s a bad guy, but he’s no hero.” Maria struggled to explain why little Nefertiti shouldn’t trust her ex-boyfriend.

“But he’s my big brother!” Nef argued.

“I know, sweetie, but…” Maria shook her head.

“You do think he’s a bad guy,” the little girl accused.

“Of course not, Nef. Well… Ugh, Nef, just don’t go back there. It’s not the place for a little girl like you.”

“You were there.”

“And I left, didn’t I? Your brother is an alright guy, but just not that trustworthy.”

“Why not?”

Should she tell her? Should she tell this little girl about all he’s done? Beat up her best friend? Multiple times? Beat her up? Coerced her into sex when she wasn’t ready? Impregnated her? No one knew that, yet. Just the Old Lady. But despite all that, she couldn’t deny her feelings for him? How much she longs for his company every now and then? No, she shouldn’t burden this little girl with all that.

“Just trust me, Nef. Don’t do it.”

“But I wanna see my big brother!”

“Nefertiti, if I hear you’ve gone to the Inn I’ll give you a spanking you’ll never forget, understand me!?”

Nef’s eyes welled up a bit. “But, but…” The look in Maria’s eyes made the girl shut up. “OK…” she said softly, looking down. Maria pat her head and led her back inside to the girl’s adopted father’s home.

oOoOoOo

 

“MARIA!” Sven stormed through the Inn, looking for the teenage girl that used to hang out there so often. “MARIA!” He was so mad he could hit her right into next week. Who was she to tell his sister to stay away from him!?

When he couldn’t find her at the Inn, he went out into the streets. Walking through one alley after another. He finally found her in front of St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

“Maria!” Sven exclaimed, making a beeline for her. Maria shrank back, but didn’t run. She refused to run from him. “Maria, what’s your problem?”

“What are you talking about?” she asked, trying to sound frustrated and hide the shaking in her voice.

“You and Nef! You told her to stay away from me? The Hell is your problem!?”

“Gee, I dunno, Sven. Maybe I don’t like you beating people up!”

“I stopped hitting you, you know that! And you know I would never touch my own damn sister!”

“How do I know that!?” Maria demanded. “You said you loved me! But all you did was take advantage of me! I was your punching bag and sex doll! You beat up any guy that came anywhere near me! That’s not OK, Sven! I won’t let you do it anymore!”

“You bitch! You know I loved you! I still do! Do you know how hard it is without you? You’re mine, Maria. And you always will be!”

Maria was silenced. He still loved her? Just as much as she loves him? Her heart broke. Her poor Sven. She had hurt him so badly. She shook her head, but no sense came to her. Tears began to fall from her eyes.

“I’m sorry, Sven,” she said softly. “I…miss you, too.”

She suddenly felt herself in her arms. She felt more at home in those arms than she ever felt anywhere else. She looked up at him, and they shared a long, deep kiss. As they pulled away, she looked up into his perfect blue eyes. Then sense came back to her. She had seen those eyes go hard very quickly. These hands on her back have caused her much pain. She pulled away from him. “I…I have to go,” she mumbled, then ran up the steps of the cathedral. Sven watched her go, knowing she was going to spend the night in there, but not daring to ask her to come back to the Inn. No, he had to go back alone. And, he realized, all his temper was gone. There was nothing to distract him from the sadness of losing his love.

Ars Poetica–In Monologue Form

Published August 14, 2012 by Laitie

Writing is beautiful. Writing is hard. Writing has rules that are not followed. Writing is knowledge. Writing is escape. Writing is about being yourself.

Writing is beautiful. It comes in many forms. Poetry, prose, textbooks, computers. It shows hundreds of beautiful worlds. It shows the world the very depths of your being.

Writing is hard. It takes energy and soul. It takes work. You will find yourself exhausted after just one piece. You will spend hours upon hours to perfect it. Because it’s worth sharing your world.

Writing has rules that aren’t followed. Prepositions, commas, adjectives, questions, quotations, notations, exclamations! A writer learns these rules. Studies them to mastery. Then throws them out the window. Writing is expressing yourself.

Writing is knowledge. Knowledge of real worlds. Of imaginary worlds. Hoped-for worlds. Sharks and dragons, sorcery and chemistry, The Wild West and aliens. Everything you ever wish for.

Writing is escape. Getting lost in a world of your making. Being as grounded or not not as you wish. Writing heals. Writing what’s in your mind makes everything better.

Writing is about being yourself. Showing the page the very core of who you are. Writing anything that you want for no reason or every reason, or any reason in between. Writing is all about you.

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