Wednesday, December 9, 2009

I Shall Go Quietly to Sleep





I shall go quietly to sleep
And lay my dreams aside
Bury them in prudence deep
And clip the wings of pride

More stalwart souls than mine will prove
Determination's right
I will applaud with genuine love
And hope I have done right

But a rock and a hard place sorely press
Ambition frail as mine
And in my captive desperateness
My doggerel tales repine

Seems better now to let them sleep
Beneath the mothering earth
Perhaps in quietness they'll steep
Unto a greater worth

Or else they'll just disintegrate.
The tragedy: I stopped too late.

(c) Christine Hardy 2009

I'm deep in the hole tonight.

22 comments:

Myra said...

This is beautiful. I know your heart is heavy, and I want to encourage you to pursue your dream ... step by step ... bit by bit ... inch by inch.

Remember the turtle won the race. Remember that whenever you need it, you have willing hands to pull you along.

Love to you ...
M

Heather said...

This is a beautiful poem! I know how you feel, I've been there. So low that it's hard to see daylight anymore. But the sun will rise, your luck will change. Every season turns. In fact, I'd say with a fantastic friend like Myra, you're karma is already getting better. :)

Julee Malone said...

I'm not sure what this is all about, I just clicked in here from Twitter, but a quick glance around tells me you may be a discouraged writer.

Never give up on your dreams!

I can't tell looking here how old you are, but I just turned 52 last month, and just began taking my talent for writing seriously over the past year.

I suspect you're much younger than I - and have so much more time to chase those dreams and accomplish so much more.

Do so! :)

Kimberly Pauley said...

There are times when dreams
seem so far
and so frail
when surrounded by the
mundanities of life;
the bills, the laundry, all of the
have-to-dos and better-not-dos...

Let them nap, if they must
(at times, we can all use a rest)
but do not let them
die an early death,
fading into the twilight

Because dreams are dreams
and worth dreaming about...

If there were no dreams,
what a hollow world this would be.

Kristin said...

Wow. That is beautiful. You have a way with words. Press on.

Carol Coven Grannick said...

Hi, Christine:
So many of us have been there...and felt the same. One thing I have learned, and keep learning and practicing, is that what I think (and tell myself) about the vicissitudes of the writing life, and life in general, impacts how I feel. And while lighthearted affirmations tend not to comfort or help you out of the hole, heartfelt positive emotions - which you can learn how to create - do. The journey may be long and filled with obstacles, but ultimately the journey is what we can hold on to. You did the most important thing when you reached out for encouragement from your writing community.

Bane of Anubis said...

Sometimes we find a wonderland in the hole. Hopefully you will.

Krissy said...

Hi Christine - I really liked your poem. Don't give up, you have a wonderful gift.

Kiera said...

I think most of us in the writing world have an inkling how you feel. It's not a fun place to be, and it feels lonely and hopeless and frustrating. But it's also temporary, as long as you keep at it. I think it's good to allow yourself a day or two to feel what you need to feel, and then forge ahead. Accept that this, too, is just part of the journey.

(I'm making huge assumptions here that this is the dream you're referring to, so please forgive me if I'm totally off the mark, but whatever's on your mind, take a few breaths, appreciate all your hard work, and then baby-step ahead. You'll get there!)

Kristin Tubb said...

July 7, 2003. That was the day when I swore I was on the wrong path, that I'd invested too much time, energy and hope into my dream of becoming a writer. I went for a walk and realized i had never doubted myself more. Then I decided that I would never doubt myself that deeply again. I went home and wrote "July 7, 2003" on a sticky note, and I look at it whenever I'm in doubt. "This funk is bad," I'll tell myself, "but it's no July 7."

Your date sounds like it might be today. I encourage you to make this your big day of doubt, then continue on. You have a gift. The world needs to hear your voice.

Sarah Winters said...

I think we all have been where you are. Sometimes there are ups in life and sometimes downs. You have a great friend who encouraged a group of us to drop in and read your words. I think your poem is great and your friend must think so too and she must think are you as well. I hope you see that not just one arm has reached in to help you out of a hole but a number of arms have reached in to help left you out. Because, as writers, most of us know that need for encouragement … we know it so well we could write a book on the subject. Mine would be called, “The day I ate my weight in M&Ms!”
Good luck,
Sarah

Catie S (Book Bound) said...

Some days it seems like everything is going wrong that possibly can & you aren't sure you'll ever see the light at the end of the tunnel.
Other days it seems like things fall neatly into place.
Never give up!!!
If you've got friends like Myra, I'd bet you can do anything!!!

J.S. Wood said...

Absolutely beautiful poem.

We all need times in our lives when we are ready to give up because once we get through them we are able to realize how important what we are doing is. All that matters is being true to ourselves and writing is the best way to honor that inner self, the creativity that makes us human.

It all comes in time and if it doesn't have the outcome we want, we can know we persevered. Your words are something no one can take away from you and will live on long after you are gone.

Christine H said...

Wow. I came here to tweak and found out I'd been tweeted. I really don't know what to say.

Thank you, Myra. I'm speechless.

I guess I have to figure out this twitter thing then.

Christine H said...

And thank you, everyone else, for your kind words and for coming by. I almost fainted when I saw 13 comments this morning. I never get this much traffic.

Myra said...

*WHEW* I had a serious Oh Crap moment in the middle of the night last night - worrying I'd done the wrong thing! I'm glad you're encouraged - and yes, check out Twitter!

Margie Gelbwasser said...

Don't give up! Your poems are beautiful! We all have had days like yours, but you can do it. Just believe in yourself.

Christine H said...

Myra... Your post yesterday is what sort of sent me into a spiral. I felt like all the negative voices in my head had gotten megaphones, as in "It's all your fault! You DO have to be superwoman to get published." And I was so exhausted from my late night grading session, and Cub Scouts and helping at church and just everything (not to mention PMS) that I just thought, "I can't do this any more. It's just not worth my sanity."

I forgot I had a cup of coffee in my hand and tried to walk into the campus library to retrieve some papers, and the security guard kindly reminded me, so I turned and walked out again, sat down in the cold on the edge of the brick wall outside to drink my coffee, and the wind took my statistics notes and blew them all over the wet sidewalk. I was so worn out, I just watched them for about half a minute before trying to pick them up. That's how blown I was.

So I came home and tearfully wrote this poem at my dining room table and put it up here, feeling like a mopey fifteen-year-old, and what happens... I get all this overwhelming encouragement. So God used you! I mean, I know that it's up to me to finish this dang novel, but I just can't do everything by myself, and so often if feels like that's what I'm doing.

I find it highly ironic that I couldn't help writing about not writing, which in turn prompted a bunch of other writers to write about not writing.

Are we hopeless or what?

Elisabeth Black said...

We all need the sweetness of encouragement from time to time. The poem is lovely. Glad you feel better today.

Bane of Anubis said...

Christine, I've tagged you over at myblog if you'd be willing to share some more.

Laura Martone said...

Christine - I'm so sorry that I didn't see this the day you posted it. It's a beautiful, poignant, heart-breaking poem - and though I've been woefully neglectful of the blogosphere lately, I simply must comment. I just hate to see you so discouraged.

Still, as everyone has written, we've all been there before. And no doubt we'll all be there again. Luckily, we have an amazing group of writers out there, willing to lend a hand when we've fallen down the hole. And as Bane said, perhaps we'll find a Wonderland down there (like your poem!) or a reason to believe again.

Good luck, Christine... with everything!

Christine H said...

Thank you so much, Laura. I was having a horrible, terrible, no good, very bad week last week. But these wonderful writers came by to encourage me!

I didn't leave the poem up long because I didn't want a depressing note to remain on the blog. But you may have noticed my Facebook account is gone. I'm still adjusting to life without it.

Fewer excuses not to write. Now I'm just plain procrastinating.