Breaking The Rules + The Routine
I am a daily practice pusher. A creative crusader, challenger.
But... sometimes you need to break from the routine. Sometimes you need to break the rules and play hooky from your daily practices. Sometimes you need to “be bad” in order to find out the edges of your personality. Sometimes you have to try something different or just take the day off.
Today has been that kind of day.
Instead of meditating, taking my mountain walk, writing and eating papaya (including the seeds). Instead of sticking to my no-wheat, no sugar, no red meat, (mostly) no dairy diet, I drove to Cabo and went to my favorite bakery to eat their chickpea pesto panini after six weeks with out bread. It was crunchy delicious. Then I wandered around the mall feeling like a tourist in a slick jungle. When you live in the desert the mall feels you feel like a strange, dirty animal.
And then I decided it was time to change things up a bit with this Museletter. My original intention with this letter back in June was to motivate me to keep in touch with you and to hold myself accountable to communicate once a week. And when I first started, I wasn’t sure if I had anything to say, so I thought I could still stay in touch by sharing links to things to read, listen to and look at.
On the one hand, I have always loved the idea of being a tastemaker, a person who enthusiastically shares art forms that inspire me. I secretly believe I have excellent taste, and have worked for many years to cultivate my taste, so I thought why not? Why not me? I had once sent such a letter last year with links to the creative things my friends and family were doing. And I had so enjoyed it.
But now, I see how how that decision was fueled by an unconscious desire to hide my writing and hide from my writing. The links was my back up plan. I thought: "if I have nothing to say, I can just share some links." But I discovered, week after week, (it’s been 14 weeks to be exact) that I actually had a lot to say. And it seems that perhaps my readers are more interested in what I have been writing about more than what music I've been listening to (especially since I tend to hear about things a little later.)
Also, I have been looking at the way I spend my time. Because I am a Mom and have so many projects I am currently working on, I realize that I need to be more efficient with how I choose to conduct these projects. I’ve spent many hours every week designing these emails. I realize it would be more efficient and more useful to put my recommendations on my blog with tags so that anyone can find them. My goal with my website has always been to make it a space for creative resources. The blog already is somewhat that way. But there is a lot more to add!
From now on, I will still be sending you a weekly letter, with a few links at time, but not with the whole fancy sidebar thing. Eventually, these kinds of recommendations, things to read, listen to and look at, will make it up on the blog. If you have an opinion on this shift in format, I would love to hear it!
Do hold yourself to rules or routines that sometimes need re-assessing or occasional breaking? Do you like to break your own rules just to know how it feels?
I would like to end this email with a poem I wrote last summer in response to my own assignment for the writing class I taught called breaking the rules. I wrote the poem on the back of a print out of an ee cummings poem.
I said break the rules but what did I really mean?
Holding onto myself.
Being a good girl.
when I mean YESSSSSS inside.
Letting the exclamation points
pile up until they look like pick up sticks.
Letting the handwriting be as erratic as it needs to be.
Not practicing what I teach.
Like honesty, badness, goodness and not holding back.
Here’s another way we can do it.
Write on top of the holy words
of your favorite poet.
Get odd when it’s time to play doubles.
Brag about your high score and don't let someone shame your points.
Don't forget to be a social climber,
and a bad one too,
who drinks too much and doesn’t introduce herself.
This can be about anything
as long as you don’t follow my instructions.
Get wise when you feel the boldness coming.
Etch it out in clear plastic,
ink it out,
that used to rhyme.
Forgive your sentences for being sincere and seductive.
Forgive your boss for laying you off.
Don’t tell her off.
Tell her on—thank her
for pushing you towards destiny.
She might thank you some day too.
For igniting her last moment of history.
The rule breaking
goes on and on.
Way beyond pen to paper.
I know it’s okay to write beside you com ings.
Into me. You
to love the in-betweens
And the rules
that are so beautiful
when turned upside down.
That’s what we are doing with our pen hearts
our holdovers our chicken scratched fingers.
Don’t have the poem hate the poet
who wants to alter you and marry and divorce you
until you are no longer who you used to be.
Until you are wholefingers
of your childhood gloves.
Those don’t fit me anymore, you say,
and I believe you.
I believe your worthiness.
Your soul rise.
I’m a late bloomer too.
Born in the 70’s.It took me a while to
shine my sun on.
It too me a while to
It took me a while to hear the true story
that was covered in dust.
It took me a while to reach conclusions.
Georgian Poet + Storyteller
just when you thought you knew how to teach
Never. Never. Never.
Unless you believe death has a say
in how your soul speaks.