Sunday, April 13, 2014

Night Thoughts: Be Love and Adventure

Taking road trips is an exciting, fun adventure full of magic and sometimes unexpected surprises. Recently, I took a mini road trip to Grand Rapids (GR), an up and coming city on Michigan's west side. GR is considered a college town, and is best known for it's art, and it's breweries. I spent five years in Grand Rapids attending Aquinas college (AQ), a small private institution nestled in a 'forest' to the east of the city. I embarked on the two-hour drive in order to see my dear friends one last time before embarking on my Golden Gaian Adventure.

By sheer happenstance and divine synchronicity I was able to see a majority of my kindred spirits. It was nothing short of emotional. Some realized this would be the last time they would see me until Wakarusa in Arkansas. Others gave me bone crushing hugs upon realizing they would not see me again for another 4 months. It was very heartwarming.

I walked around Aquinas' tree studded campus and took in the familiar scents and sounds. The campus appeared unchanged yet was always changing. A new apartment building was under construction, the cafeteria had received a new coat of paint, and there were new recycling bins in all the administrative buildings to show a stronger initiative for ECO living. I recognized many faces and it warmed my heart to see them again.

This might sound weird, but even the people I did not know, I was happy to see again (in the above video I touch on this). I waved and smiled to these unsuspecting individuals. Whether they remembered me or not was not the first thing on my mind, all I was thinking about was how GOOD it felt to see them again!
Half the time I was met with shy smiles, and polite waves, a few gave me confused looks. I thought to myself, it might be odd but that's how I felt- Love and joy!

I felt immense gratitude for so many reasons. I felt gratitude for having the opportunity to be back at Aquinas one last time. I felt gratitude for having had such a wonderful and enlightening experience at AQ. I felt gratitude for all the people I met who shaped my life and my understanding of the world.
Cartoon of logic class
 And that is why I felt love and joy for complete strangers. Without the help of these 'strangers' I would not have learned so much about my own self expression.
What do I mean by this? Hahah, I ask myself that question as I type this out. I'm having a hard time putting this idea into words. I even made a video about these feelings, and now I'm writing this blog to further process it.

Basically, strangers only end up staying strangers because one doesn't take the time to strike up a conversation. At AQ all strangers become more like acquaintances. This is because AQ has such a small campus that it is common for everyone to always runs into each other on more than one occasion. Polite small talk becomes a daily practice, and outgoing individuals become well-known on campus. The atmosphere is intimate and allows for a deeper level of growth. Consequently, the students have affectionately nicknamed the college AQ HIGH because everyone knows everyone else in some form or fashion, just like in high school. Of course that also means that occasionally there is high school like drama, which can be expected from freshly graduated high school seniors turned freshmen again. However, this too is part of the learning process that AQ students go through.
My point, and invariably the point of this blog, (Besides the AQ engraved waffle) is to express my feelings of nostalgia and sweet sentiment for a place that has assisted in my growth, and has shaped my current understanding and perception of the world. My time spent at Aquinas and in the city of Grand Rapids was an amazing experience, for which I am grateful.
As I embark on this Golden Gaian Adventure I am reminded to stay strong in who I've become. The trip back to Grand Rapids reinspiried me to keep believing in my dreams. I am a culmination of fun, exciting spiritual experiences. I remember how I got "here", I am ready... for anything, I am open to what the world has to teach me, and I am guided on my path.


Monday, April 7, 2014

Wise Owl (Poem)

Wise Owl

Wise Owl in the tree
What do you see?
Do you see the woman slaving over dinner,
And the man who long ago strived to win her?
Do you see an ancient love in their eyes?
Do you see the flame as it dies?
Wise Owl in your tree,
What is it that you see?
I blink my eyes, and the owl replies:
I see the love the woman holds for he,
and the love the man holds for she.
I see a couple, worn and weary
Growing old but still quite cheery
The flame they share is still there
God has created them as a pair
Now young child do you see
Destined love lasts for centuries

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Paperback Day Dream

Paperback Day Dream

A Short Story

     Shurri wasn't sure what time it was exactly when she woke up from her fantasy world. The wind had changed directions and the long grass she laid in tickled her nose distracting her from finishing the novel that had engulfed her senses. Her finger between the pages paused the fantasy world, and she stared up at the blue sky watching the soft white clouds drift on the lazy breeze. Shurri had decided to skip school to avoid the lectures on things that could be read in books, thinking of her friend Ming, who could read historical fiction without getting bored. Even at the young age of sixteen, to her and her friends books were the vital spark they needed to get through life. Shurri had lost many suitors because of her fondness to her paperback pals. Her mother often scolded her for skipping school to read of princesses and princes who fought valiantly for the one they loved. Oh how Shurri wished to have an adventure similar to the ones in fairy tales.
     Now she lay in her favorite reading spot, clutching a copy of The People Could Fly. It contained a collection of American Black Folktales told by Virginia Hamilton. Shurri loved to explore the fairy tales and folktales of other cultures. With each tale brought another adventure into her imagination, bringing the whole story alive letting Shurri join its characters.
     Shurri was of some African decent, but only one fourth, which was enough to give her complexion a golden brown tone, and her chocolate hair a slight curl.
    The wind danced in her hair and played with her light green printed dress and stirring the leaves in the trees a few yards behind her. Today was a perfect day for an adventure.
     Shurri sighed, rolled onto her stomach and propped herself up on her elbows, gazing across the sea of grass that led to a beaten dirt road. A ways down the road she could see the small one room school house that held grades first and up. She knew that in a few hours, kids of all ages would burst through the doors and race home to play games of stick ball and football.
    Shurri felt detached from the world of frivolity, because of all the knowledge reading had lent her, many thought she was too smug to join in their games. Even her teacher and some adults held disdain for her and the arsenal of information she carried. She took no offense. The words on the pages seemed to dance before her eyes and create worlds in which battles were waged, lives were lost, and the end held the beautiful lessons of life. She was addicted to the excitement of discovering the mastermind behind the evil plot or the saving of a damsel in distress. This addiction lead her to new, harder novels to read, subsequently expanding her knowledge, vocabulary, and grammar.
     Besides her daily chores, she worked a few hours at the bakery downtown, but only to earn enough money to buy more books. She couldn't help it if older folk suddenly felt jealous because she dared to read while they worked, that was their choice not hers. She chose reading over working and liked it that way. Any other chore seemed to waste her time.
     It was then that she heard it, the small chime of the metallic bell being struck repeatedly, jarring her from her thoughts. The doors to the red school burst open, and a flood of bodies surged out and then divided into different directions. Each heading for a place Shurri could only imagine.
     It was time, she sighed, time to blend back in with the crowd and ask her friends what the lessons for today had been. Shurri stood and brushed the dirt from her dress. She tenderly plucked a strand of grass and placed it between the pages of her book, and began her trek towards the dirt road.
     At the edge of the field stood three people, each with a different expression on their face. The shortest held two bundles of schoolbooks and a sorrowful expression that would melt your heart. The owner of this puppy dog face was Emma, about seventeen years old, her straight strawberry blonde hair was cut level to her chin, with bit tied off to the side in a ponytail.
     The person on the right was Jade, she stood a head taller than Emma and was of Asian descent. Her jet-black hair was tied up in an intricate bun and decorated with a bead-studded hairpiece. Shurri noticed her nose was buried in a book, and that the pages were quickly being turned. She must be at a good part, Shurri thought.
     The tallest was male. He had a standoffish attitude and wasn't even facing Shurri as she approached, he was staring down the road as if interested in something in the distance. His dark hair was disheveled, and his shirt was untucked. Ever since he hit puberty and had a growth spurt he liked to act all high and mighty, but really he was a sweetheart. Together they made an odd group. Emma was the worry wart, Jade was the levelheaded one, and Jack was the know-it-all big brother figure.
     Shurri had known these three for her whole life. They were her friends; they were her second family. It seemed, at times, they were the only ones who understood each other. Shurri felt it was a bond that no one could break.
     “Yo, yo yo!” Shurri sang out in greeting. “So how was class today?”
The Asian girl shrugged, and continued reading indicating she had hardly paid attention.
“Shri,” Emma called her by her nickname, “please don’t skip again,” her voice squeaked, “I hate having to make up excuses for your disappearance. Plus, I hate carrying your text books.” She lofted the stack into Shurri’s arms.
“I know, sorry. I just can’t help it ya know? The fields called my name! It was too beautiful outside to be inside!” Shurri gestured dramatically and laughed. She patted the girl on the head, “I felt the pull of my book whispering, ‘Come! Read me!’ I couldn’t resist. I hope it wasn’t to much trouble-”
“Damn straight it caused trouble!” Jack turned on her suddenly, “Do you know poor little Emma here stammered to find an excuse for your damn absence? She was scared sh-spitless! It ain’t fair to her that you can up and leave whenever the hell you want! You’ve been in and out all fu- frickin’ week! You can’t keep this up, or Ole Miss Berry gonna ‘spect somthin’!” As the boy vented his southern accent came through and he was barely able to keep his swearing to a minimum.
There’s only one way to remedy a flustered Jack, Shurri thought, and that’s to bat your eyes and sweet-talk him. Typical.
“I’m sorry Jack,” Shurri scuffed a foot on the ground and played ‘the cute scolded child’s’ attitude, “I should take more responsibility for my actions,” Shurri chanced a look up and found Jack scratching his head and looking a bit embarrassed. Shurri grinned on the inside, but kept her solemn face.
“Well, just don’t do it again…without a warning,” He added.
Shurri grinned a cat’s grin, “Ok! So…can I borrow your notes?” she asked without missing a beat.
Jack was taken aback and then caught on she had played him, “I ain’t never gonna let you borrow ‘em!” He yelled, his face flushed over the fact she had tricked him, “You can just find another person to leech onto, I’m done letting you suck me dry!” He stomped off down the road muttering curses under his breath.
Shurri pouted, “How am I supposed to pass the test now?”
Jade glanced up from her book and watched the retreating Jack. She smirked, then turned back to her book saying “Don’t ask me for anything. You did this to yourself,” She turned a page and started walking, “Besides I didn’t take notes, its all up here.” She taped her head and continued walking and reading.
Shurri sighed and turned to Emma, her last hope, “I don’t suppose you took notes for me?”
Emma stuck her tongue out at Shurri and ran to catch up with Jade.
“What? Hey wait guysssss come on! I thought we were friends.” She stood there waiting for a response. Jack held up his middle finger.
“Well, so much for our special ‘bond’,” Shurri muttered to the wind, then followed her friends down the dirt road. She smiled knowing that they would later get together to study anyways.
--. --. --. --. --. --. –

Just a quickie I wrote at midnight, because the rain kept me up. Hope you liked it.
I wrote it to get out some creative energy. I understand that it doesn't have a plot or any deep substance. Thank you for your lovely comments ;)

World of Many Things (Poem)

This was a poem I wrote after I got in a heated discussion with my dad about various things, like gay rights, negative perceptions of women's strength, and stereotypes of different ethnicities. This was first drafted when I was starting high school. I'm publishing it now to share my feelings with all of you. I've always had a full and loving heart, and as you read you’ll see what I mean.

The World of Many things

It is black, it is white
It is green, it is brown
It is tan, it is red
It is all the colors

Things are happy, things are sad
Things laugh, things heal
Things cry, things bleed
A world of things that feel

Worship spirits, worship gods
Worship flowers, worship trees
Great people worship with love
A world of many beliefs

He is male, she is female
he is girl, she is boy
He is man, she is woman
We are all human

She loves him, he loves her
He loves him, he loves him too
She loves her, she loves her back
We love when love is true

THIS is A world of many things
A world of colors
A world of feelings
A world of beliefs
A world of gender
A world of love

This world is all
Because of all we are
We are full of love
So love fills the world

(A/N): I realize this is slightly cheesy and could possibly piss off some people but if I don’t write these words I feel my heart will explode. If I don't say something then I feel like I'm not doing my part. My point is nothing ever gets accomplished if people only think about how to change the world for the better.
QUOTE: “Speak your mind even if your voice shakes.”  -Unknown

Read and Review fellow homosapiens!