We have a beautiful spring-like afternoon here in Saskatchewan. Our temperatures have risen above 0 C and the cats are loitering outside in the sunshine. A sweet promise of days to come.
After December’s side-track, I’m again working at my ATCUSS* goal. This week I’ve been doing more cleaning/tossing out in my sewing room, as well as some minor mending. (*ATCUSS: A Total Clean-Up of my Sewing Space.)
We live in a mobile home and there’s just not much room to store things — never mind half-finished things. Ungrateful soul that I am, some days I look around and think:
Stuff, stuff, stuff!
Where to save it?
Where to store it?
No, stuff it. Stuff it!
Blessing from Heaven:
those green garbage bags!
Snow falls anew on prairie cities; mercury plummets. Planes depart daily from prairie airports, carrying snowbirds to southern destinations. The brave, the tough, the broke choose to enjoy the winter wonderland. 😉
When it comes to clichés, I feel there’s nothing that can successfully replace some of these one-bite-wisdom quotes, like “Least said, soonest mended.” Yet editors want us to get rid of them, which is what led to the following writing exercise.
At a writing conference, each person was to think of an old gem of wisdom and write it on a sheet of paper. These were handed around and others in the group were to suggest more modern replacements for the given clichés. Yesterday as I was working through my stash of papers, I found one of these sheets. The saying:
“A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.”
In other words, you may get lucky and find that second bird in the bush. Or, while you’re chasing that one, this one you have may escape and you’ll have none.
Like the gambler who’s just won fifty dollars. If he puts it in his pocket, he has $50. If he bets it again, he may end up with $100, or he may lose it all.
This can get into even higher stakes, as when employees go on strike for higher wages. They may win the dollar per hour increase — or the boss may close down the shop, which will put them all out of work. Or they may get their pay increase after weeks on strike, but lose three or four thousand dollars in wages in the interim. When put to a vote, they may rather opt for “the bird in hand” and be content with their current wage.
But it’s a challenge to put this in a nutshell like the original saying did, and still get the meaning across. (Oh, dear! “Put it in a nutshell” is probably another cliché to avoid.)
Here are some responses people gave: — What we actually have is better than what we wish we had. — She went with a sure thing. — She made the safe choice instead of stretching for more.
And this practical example:
—She didn’t love Harry, but she figured he was better than nothing. (Poor Harry!)
Here are my suggestions: —Best grab the first bus. The next one might be full.
—Better one eye seeing something than two eyes seeing nothing.
How would you replace this old cliché? Put your thinking cap on.
When I got up this morning and saw a beautifully etched lace on my kitchen window, I thought I should write some little verse about it. For some odd reason I thought of the sun melting the frost bit by bit and “eating an elephant one bite at a time.”
Sammi’s writing prompt gives me the perfect opportunity for my imagination. This is to be “a fun writing exercise” using the word and word count given in the box below.
A frost artist, disposed,
last night while I dozed
to add a nice touch to my place,
not content with the plainness —
my window seemed pane-less —
he’s etched me a curtain of lace!
His work so enchanting
and so fine, I am granting,
adds tasteful improvement today.
But alas, here comes morn
and the warm sun has shorn
a bit of the top work away.
With passionless plodding
it persists in defrauding
me of my curtain —so crass!
As some fool eats an elephant,
each bite sends inelegant
streams of drool down the glass.
And so, in an hour,
I’ve watched it devour
my fancy frost curtain, alas!
“Oh, a wonderful stream is the river of Time as it runs through the realm of tears… And blends with the ocean of years!”
From The Long Ago, by Benjamin F. Taylor
I had to think of another realm when I woke up this morning, after having had a wild, tumbling, crazy sequence of dreams. I went from playing baseball game to being bullied to walking down a road to going on our honeymoon—with our son-in-law and daughter as chauffeurs—to finding a motel room that was completely bare to another friend finding homes for boxer pups.
Dreams are indeed another realm. No one can say just how dreams come together in such a crazy quilt, with snatches of our real lives interwoven with stories we’ve read or heard. People wander through, fade in and out, morph into others. I’ve found that physical feelings like pain or a room too warm, even if not enough to wake me up, contribute to the amount and the wackiness of my dreams.
They can be interesting, that’s for sure. Some have even revealed attitudes I didn’t recognize when I was awake. Still, I sometimes think, “Blessed are they who never remember their dreams.”
What do you think?
At any rate, I’d like to invite you to pop over to the Ragtag Community and dream up some response of your own to the word REALM — which happens to be the one I suggested. 😉