An Adventure in Public Speaking (And a Poem)

In March of this year, one of my good friends (and follower of yours truly) got engaged to her other half. Immediately, she started making plans for an October wedding, including extending an invitation for me to write and READ something written especially for the occasion. 

Obviously I said yes (more like “YES! yes! yesss!!!”).

What didn’t occur to me at that moment 5 months ago was that I would have to read in front of a room filled with strangers. This would be stressful enough for someone as shy as myself. Now, add to that the reading would not be something pre-written from a book, it would be a creation of my own making. 

Creative writing often proves difficult for me. I find my mind too busy to focus on one thing at a time, I start too many projects, and generally finish very few (none ever to my liking), and forget about most. This, I am told, is typical of an artist. 

Public speaking has always been my nemesis. In my university days, I took a class aimed at teaching how to deliver a speech – or so I thought. I ended up learning to avoid that class.
In the various positions I have held in my line of work, giving presentations and meetings were an often dreaded requirement. Even as the authority in the room, I had sweaty palms, dry mouth, red face, and a st-st-stutter. Every. Single. Time. 

Writing the piece turned out to be easier than I had anticipated; the words literally came to me in a dream. And, it wasn’t until “wedding week” that I really started to stress out about reading my own work in public. Online forums, such as this one, are great creative outlets because of their anonymity. 

I’ll skip over the train wreck that was the reading of my poem. Focusing instead on what an incredible experience it was to share the day with such a dear friend. I have never seen a bride so exhilarated to walk down the aisle, and I have never felt more honoured to be asked to participate.

 

So! To the new Mr. and Mrs; THANK YOU  for allowing me to take part in your special day (train wreck and all). 

May your mornings bring joy and your evenings bring peace.
May your troubles grow few as your blessings increase.
May the saddest day of your future
Be no worse than the happiest day of your past.
May your hands be forever clasped in friendship
And your hearts joined forever in love.

 

Peace and Love,
Mandixoxox

 

 

 

3 Words – Part I

As with any hobby, sport or past time, practice makes perfect.
Athlete’s train, yogis yoga, painters paint, sculptors sculpt, and writers write.
Since I consider myself to be a writer, I try to practice my craft on a daily basis. With writing, there is no such thing as perfect – any writer will tell you that. There are many ways in which to combat the insufferable writers block; surrounding yourself with inspirational quotes; writing in the same environment at the same time everyday; story boarding ideas; and the list goes on…

When I haven’t written anything in a while, one of my favourite activities is what I’ve called the “3-word method:”
Enlisting the help of friends, neighbours, and coworkers, I ask them to provide me with 3 words of their choosing. I then take a little time with each set of words, I type or write and say them aloud over and over until I feel that spark of energy, until something flows…

Recently, I played this “game” with some friends via Facebook. Their words were nothing short of challenging. What follows are a few examples:

Tin, compel, curve for Katie

Her cheek, a gentle curve
His heart, as cold as tin
Their tears, flowed together
Just like a gentle wind.

She asked him not to go,
He told her not to stay,
A lifetime’s loss of memories
All had gone astray.

For years her heart was broken
Alas, he was ashamed,
Compelled to live forever
With a heart that can’t be tamed.


Batman, tablecloth, Jupiter for Ian  

He knew he had a purpose,
He knew what must be done.
Batman could not aid him,
He is the only one.

A home far past Jupiter,
No kin he had to share.
His fortress was of solitude,
That was his private lair.

A cape made from a tablecloth,
His tights were blue and red.
To save him from his kryptonite,
He bore a box of lead.


 

I, heart, you for Shyla

Too many words to tell you,
So many words to say.
How do I say ‘I love you’
In a much simpler way?

The answer is within me,
I truly am so smart.
For all I have to tell you,
Is right inside my heart.

 

Peace and Love,
Mandixoxox