Daytimer


Photo Credit: Matsumoto_Journal

Daytimer

Another year to archive.

I browse the aisles of Staples,
finger textures,
evaluate colors,
price and
format.
I choose faux leather,
gray,
cheap.
Weekly (seven days on two open-faced pages.)
I don’t need more than that anymore.

At home,
a journal from 1986 awaits purging.
Pregnant with midlife dreams,
hopes,
promises.
I read the tiny script with wonder—
perfection forced into being—
tear my life of then to shreds,
reconcile what might have been
with that which is,
content.

Writing sprawls across the page,
creative sloppiness.

Submitted to Karin’s prompt over at dVerse where we’re asked to consider treaty, truce. One of the challenges of the last part of life is to accept the reality of what is relative to what we thought it would be in our youth. A recent health issue, which has turned out not to be as bad as I anticipated, has me purging my old journals. It is mind-boggling to see how life has unfolded compared to what I had expected…and a bit disconcerting to realize that the issues of long ago are the same ones that hound me today, in gentler forms. Life is good when lived in the moment…and so much freer.

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27 thoughts on “Daytimer

  1. poetry forum says:

    Ain’t this the truth. I’ve written many poems about my past, or inspired by it. Some of them aren’t so pretty, but it’s more about frankness and honesty rather than any attempt to relive it. Sometimes it’s also better not to look back at the past and take it so damn seriously. Contentment in life is a great thing to aspire to, and like what many poets do, that means tearing out old pages and writing new ones.

    Like

  2. Jamie Dedes says:

    Am there doing that. Phew!
    A lovely post and a needed truce for all of us.

    Like

  3. I have poetry and notes and cards from 1980. And journals from 1997. I guess I am sentimental. My exact emotion of the moment frozen in time.

    I absolutely loved your poem.

    Like

  4. vivinfrance says:

    I have read this several times, and enjoyed it more each time. The conclusion is a perfect recipe for living. BTW Staples is a bed manufacturer in UK, so I was confused at first!

    Like

  5. Sabio Lantz says:

    The evolving writer’s journal — interesting take. Ripping them up was strong.

    Like

  6. David King says:

    Pregnant with midlife dreams: I remember them!
    And I really go for the creative sloppiness! In each stanza, almost in each line, there was something to arrest me, make me think or change my mood. This is fine writing.

    Like

  7. Poet Laundry says:

    “reconcile what might have been
    with that which is,
    content.”

    …I love that. Peace made with the past and arriving at contentment is such a good place to be.

    Like

  8. Lisa says:

    So beautiful. I love from the stationary store to the purging of the mind. Peace in the end.

    Like

  9. Coming to peace with writing and with life; I don’t know if I’ve done that yet, I just keep trudging on trying to make sense of each day and relying on angels. Wonderful poem Victoria!

    Like

  10. claudia says:

    smiles..reading this brings back the conversation we had last friday when we met…hope you’re feeling better victoria…

    Like

  11. Mama Zen says:

    I love the approach that you took to the prompt. Lovely write.

    Like

  12. You capture this process of making peace with our lives and ourselves well, always a pleasure to read your work. I’m leaving feeling calmer.

    Like

  13. hedgewitch says:

    I so understand. Victoria–especially your summing up at the end. I was a voluminous journalizer, and now when I go back and reread them I’m amazed at the number of pages I spent saying basically the same thing, dealing over and over with the same sorts of feelings. It seems very hard to be young, though of course getting old isn’t exactly a cakewalk. An excellent poem of the inner truce we must make.

    Like

  14. Glenn Buttkus says:

    I started my writer’s journals in the margins of my school papers, on the back of pee chee folders, on lined paper, on butcher paper, then came the 60’s, Viet Nam, free love, braless, stoned, acid rock, the Beatles, all recorded in red covered journals, tall, short, pocketbooks, ledgers, legal tablets–stuffed away now in a dusty corner under my movie scrapbooks, under my reams of old poetry, under my two unpublished novels; all so personal, so revealing, so molding; now, over the last 15 years, my archives are cyber-based, my perceptions shifting at cyber speeds; loved your poem.

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  15. Grace says:

    I like the calm acceptance and creative sloppiness at the end ~

    I wish my life now is freer but frankly now that I am older, I feel the need to press on with more speed ~

    Like

  16. poemsofhateandhope says:

    So very honest…really enjoyed this Victoria….for me this is as much about making peace with one’s self as acceptance. We can palm and aspire but if we not end up where we thought we would, it doesn’t necessarily mean we have failed. Great poem

    Like

  17. jcosmonewbery says:

    Ha! This is a war we all fight! No sign of a truce on my battlefield.

    Like

  18. Miriam E. says:

    “Pregnant with midlife dreams,
    hopes,
    promises.”
    great lines.
    sometimes it’s better to let go of the past. too much reminiscing can wear us down…

    Like

  19. souldipper says:

    Oh boy, my weakness – stationery stores. I love discovering all the new little gadgets and beebobs that help to make life at my desk easier.

    As a record, I kept my appointment books. They contained business and personal appointments. I noted where I was located and who the people were in my life during that contract/phase. I used to have this “thing” – what if I have to reconstruct my whereabouts and activities? How would I prove I was where I was? Likely had too much THINK time driving on those long highways between contracts! 😀

    Like

  20. We do tend to worry and fret over so many things but, as we look back, some of them were so silly or, unfounded. It’s good to look back from a sense of present contentment and not have any regrets or any ‘if only I’d done…’
    Great poem and I am so pleased that your recent health issue isn’t as serious as you had thought.

    Like

  21. I have journals from the 1970s that my son says can’t be mine as I’m a non stop party animal! You make peace with your past!

    Like

  22. gardenlilie says:

    Why don’t you post one or two from years past…. Stay well n have few regrets. I’m very happy to have found you all here, lovin it.

    Like

  23. ManicDdaily says:

    Somehow my favorite detail here is the faux leather – kind of describes my skin! Very well realized. k.

    Like

  24. I like this truce with yourself.

    Like

  25. Mary says:

    Interesting, isn’t it, how the issues do really remain the same throughout life, for the most part, with some exceptions. I assume when you say you are purging your journal you mean disposing of particular sections. Ha, I don’t write anything down anymore that I don’t mind being discovered. I just know how fast things can happen. Interesting also how one page a week will now suffice. Life changes. And yes, living right in the present IS freeing.

    Like

  26. Laurie Kolp says:

    I do think that as we age, our priorities change into something more realistic… like family, health and other things.

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  27. brian miller says:

    smiles..i have journals from 8 years back now…its fun to look back on them….and there are some dreams we must let go of…esp if we can find that contentment….dont know if i could ever bring myself to tear one up literally…i go through a few a year so i get them when i can for cheap…smiles…nice unique take…def freer in the moment….

    a little blue bird told me you might be under the weather today….hope you are feeling better….

    Like

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