So you can read my books

Thursday, July 1, 2010


Your unconscious speaks to you all the time. Usually, the din of our present moment drowns it out. Usually.

But the unconscious is a tricky little bugger.

As I was driving today in the blinding rains, courtesy of long-reaching Hurricane Alex, a car darted recklessly in front of me. I drive as if everyone around me is suicidal and moronic -- so there was no accident.

Through the blurred windshield, I spotted the bumper sticker on it. I thought I read : NO MATTER YOUR WINTER, SPRING WILL COME. When the windshield wipers sqeaked me a clear view, my impression wasn't even close to the true words of the sticker.

Don't ask. Just content yourself with the fact that it matched perfectly the mindset of a suicidal moron.

But it got me to thinking as I drove home. My unconscious mind was right. Life is a circle of seasons. No winter stays forever. No summer is endless. Trauma will end. Healing will begin. And no joy lasts forever.

My blog friends email me :

some are struggling in the middle of their novels;

some are just trying to overcome the inertia of pushing the beginning of their narrative over that first hill;

while others are brooding about revisions : where to prune, where to further illuminate.

Whatever season you find yourself struggling in, know that with the trials, there are also pleasures involved with each season. Both blessings and blights have expiration dates.

Life is both less and more than you may think. It is a fragile tangle of perceptions that exist in a fleeting moment in time.

This moment.

See? It is already gone : that moment when your eyes first spied the title over my post.

And that is something my half-Lakota mother taught me as we looked out over Lake Michigan at a frosty sunset while she spun me tales of the Twilight of the Gods, and what it meant to be courageous.

Suddenly, she turned to me and said : "Breathe each breath, little one. No two are the same. Remember the colors that paint this sky. Remember me, little one. Remember, and this sunset ... and I ... we will never leave you. Never."

Yesterday I wrote of Emily Dickinson. Writing of that sunset from so long ago has reminded me of her "Blazing in Gold." Here is a snippet :

"Blazing in gold and quenching in purple,
Leaping like leopards to the sky,
Then at the feet of the old horizon
Laying her spotted face to die…."

Another favorite comes from Christina Georgina Rossetti's "From Sunset To Star Rise" :

"I live alone, I look to die alone:
Yet sometimes, when a wind sighs through the sedge,
Ghosts of my buried years and friends come back,
My heart goes sighing after swallows flown
On sometime summer's unreturning track."

We write our tales, spinning them of the silk of our imagination and perceptions. We sail the dark seas of longing and desire ... to be published? No. I think we sail for a shore other than the need to be heard. No, we sail upon the Sea of Dreams to connect to others of like spirit out in the darkness.

That is why we sail upon uncertain seas to tell our stories ... to reach another heart like ours: hurting, hoping, and helping. That is a star worthy of charting our course by.

What did John Masefield write?

I must go down to the sea again,
to the lonely sea and sky,
And all I ask is a tall ship
And a star to steer by.
Post Script : If you would like to see how an agent truly views queries and the writers who send them, go to this delightful, enlightening post by agent, Anita Bartholomew of Salkind Literary Agency :


  1. Roland.. these words are truly meaningful.

    "Life is a circle of seasons. No winter stays forever. No summer is endless. Trauma will end. Healing will begin. And no joy lasts forever."

    Absolutely true! Nothing is permanent. The only thing constant is change.


  2. You're so right-to everything there is a season...very hopeful words, very helpful ones, too. I would love to have met your mother, she sounds wonderful....

  3. Roland you never cease to amaze me with your wisdom.

    What did the bumper sticker really say?

  4. May the season of healing and regeneration be long and languid and lovely!!

    Thanks for this inspiring post!

    Take care

  5. Thank you for posting this!

    I have some stuff going on with my Mom and this was a welcome reminder that "this too shall pass". I'm passing it on to her!

  6. Roland - I've really enjoyed your posts. You seem to always provide the right encouragement when I need it. Thank you!

  7. mother demanded of me to finish my peas,(a vegetable I detest to this day,) while huffing on a Bel-Aire and exhaling nicotine into my were a lucky young man, Roland:)

  8. You answered the question rolling around in my mind as I read the morning headlines: had the rain reached your corner of the world? I'm glad you're a defensive driver.

    What was your mama's name?

    One of my favorite tenets is This Too Shall Pass. I learned its true significance years ago and hold it closely in troubling times. Eckhardt Tolle shares it as one of the 'secrets' of living in the now in his book, A New Earth. It is a gentle reminder to be present, to know that all is ephemeral, including life.

    I love how your unconscious grabbed a thought and reformed it. No matter your winter, spring will come. I would add that there are times when spring pops up even in the midst of that winter. We'll take it wherever and whenever it comes.

    Thank you for a beautiful post, Olivia

  9. so a suicidal moron can bring such insights to you, huh? the seasons are powerful metaphors. summer, winter, as you note, don't last. what is more profound knowledge, more meaningful information? that ought to be the banner headline on newspapers everyday.

  10. This was a beautiful post Roland. I try to live by that. Nickelback, oddly, has a really beautiful song to this effect: Each day's a gift and not a given right--don't take the free ride in your own life.

    So important to just stay PRESENT.

  11. I know I can handle my own stuff in life with the knowledge that it will not be like that forever. Just as you say, summer will end. Winter snow is not forever, just a few months. I want to be in the moment, in the day, right here and right now. Not waiting to live till it is something else or somewhere else. My life is now. I really like this post.

  12. Ah, thanks for this encouragement, and the poetry, which for some reason conjured Frost's CHOOSE SOMETHING LIKE A STAR in my head. When I was a teen, the chorus I was in sang the poem in a gorgeous arrangement like these kids are doing in this video. Haunting but hopeful at the same time. Thanks! Also, thanks for this: "I drive as if everyone around me is suicidal and moronic -- so there was no accident." *snicker*

  13. That was very uplifting and the poems you chose were beautiful. Way to encourage the masses, Roland.

    Hope you get some writing done...rb

  14. So beautiful.

    That image of your mother and her 'little one' watching the sunset, the colors that painted that sky, will stay with me.

    Thank you.


  15. A wonderful, wise post. Thank you for the reminder to live in the moment. And your words, "No matter your winter, Spring will come."
    Thank you for that.

  16. I really needed to read a post like this right now. Thank you much, it was wonderful.

  17. A very uplifting post. Your mother obviously passed her wisdom onto you. Treasure the moments, because once they pass, you never get them back. Thank goodness for Kodak! :)