Yesterday was a bad day in my blogging world.
But let’s back up. I must first interject that 92.6% of my blogging days are good. As I’m sure you haven’t guessed–I have loved blogging these past three years on WordPress. It’s often become as important as brushing teeth or flossing.
(Have you blogged today? If not, you might get cavities!)
The bad blog days are rare.
Sometimes I jump out of bed so excited to blog that I can’t make it past meditation, yoga and breakfast. That’s how fun it is.
Yesterday morning–even though a photo of a Holy Ham Raffle had been posted the previous night–about ten cemetery photos kept begging for publication from the current photos folder. (You know how photos whimper: Publish us! Publish us! You can hardly resist…)
How I loved those cemetery pictures! I went on a Search for Color with the camera Sunday before a baby shower. Was there any color to be found along Lake Superior shores? No? No? C’mon, color, where are you hiding? Must we resign ourselves to gray skies and white snow for six more months?
And there it was–the only color in the entire country–hiding among the gravestones at the Pequaming Cemetery.
Of course, they were only plastic flowers.
But to a color-starved eye, they looked like Manna from Heaven. I adored plastic for the first time in my life. I wanted to kneel before them, tenderly photograph them, sing songs of life and adoration to those plastic flowers.
(Our eyes will be even more color-starved come February, but by then the plastic flowers shall be covered by a foot of snow. And I will hopefully be somewhere to possible view REAL flowers, but that’s another story…)
Let’s return to yesterday morning. I dusted off the cemetery photos, color-contrasted them a tad, and placed them in a brand-new blog.
Began to hum a song, “You never send me flowers any more…”
That was obviously the perfect title for yesterday’s blog.
But I counted the flowers in the photos. Way too many plastic flowers to utilize that headline. These dead folks had been given a LOT of flowers.
The song kept playing in my head, nonetheless.
Suddenly, I remembered the mood at the cemetery Sunday. Kind of sad, melancholy, deserted. And then my creative mind fell into a dream–let’s call it a dream–of an old woman who had no immediate descendants, who lived alone, who knew that no one–no one–would put flowers on her grave. Or maybe her great-nephew would. For a year or two. But soon she would be forgotten, forgotten…
I began to write her thoughts in the titles beneath the photos. Felt her sorrow. Felt how she never really completely grew comfortable with her loneliness. How part of her spirit might be lonely still…part of it sitting in the cemetery next to a tree…wondering if someone might place a plastic flower on her abandoned grave.
(Sob! Sob! The poor lady…perhaps I should go over and discover her grave…if you could figure out which one it might be…)
I wrote the last headline and pushed “Publish” and went to brush the neglected teeth.
When suddenly I thought, “WHAT THE HECK DID I JUST WRITE?”
People are going to think things like: A) Kathy wants flowers, B) she wants flowers on her grave when she dies, C) she likes plastic flowers or D) she thinks we should put flowers on our loved one’s graves.
I looked back at my blog, askance.
What had I just written?
I have never liked plastic flowers until that moment of passion in the cemetery on Sunday. I once blithely and immaturely told my parents I might never put flowers on their graves. (OK, in the next sentence I said because I would be too busy TALKING with them when they departed and would not create flower arrangements for bones.) They could have words rather than flowers, right, Mom and Dad?
This blogging debacle about grave-side flowers was totally unacceptable.
I had obviously been blogging blind-sided by a lonely flower-starved ghost.
She had written the sentences under the photos. It was her blog.
But I would have to live with it.
(These have usually been the “bad” blogging days. When I write from a point of view which isn’t my usual point of view, and then I have to live with it. And field comments about it. Sigh. The blogging world can be rough.)
It didn’t help when John commented: Ok, most days you leave me feeling warm and fuzzy, but today YOU RIPPED MY HEART OUT! Go ahead; just throw it on the ground for some coyotes to just drag away. My tears are freezing to my cheeks. I feel beaten before the day even starts. OMG Kathy how could you do that!
My heart felt ripped out, too.
A ghost had stolen my blog and ripped out the heart of one of my readers, and I had to muster the courage to respond to comments about a delicate topic–flowers on graves.
“You shouldn’t care what other people think,” I swear I heard another ghost whisper condescendingly.
“I just want to share the truth,” I snapped back. “The write–I mean right–impression.”
“What is truth?” the second ghost sighed. “You humans are so obsessed with a point of view.”
Like most rational folks, I decided this conversation was going nowhere fast, and headed to work.
I tried to work at the school after all this drama, but honest-to-goodness, had to leave early. Drove to town and ordered a deluxe personal-sized pizza with meat from the Holiday gas station (even though I don’t eat meat. And never eat at a gas station.) Came home and poured myself a glass of wine…no, no, no. I did not pour a glass of wine. Now a wino is trying to take over my blog. Instead, I made some peanut-butter-chocolate-dessert-kind-of-treat, even though we rarely eat this kind of sinful sweet.
Then the comments started coming in about how wonderful it is to have flowers on graves. That got me thinking. Maybe the ghost wrote my blog in order to expand my consciousness. To give me the opposite viewpoint, to widen perspective.
Yes, that must be it. She wants me some day to lay flowers–plastic or otherwise–on cemetery graves. Perhaps even next summer, when I visit my grandma and grandpa’s headstones. Perhaps they might appreciate some daisies or roses. Grandpa always did like red roses…
There is only one remedy when your blogging world falls apart.
You know what it is, right?
Write another blog, explaining it all! **grin**
P.S. My daughter called in the afternoon.
“How is your day going?” she asked.
“Terrible,” I said, ” a ghost wrote my blog today.”
“OK,” she said in that long-suffering voice, but with a delightful hint of amusement, “OK. And how else was your day?”
“Just fine,” I said with a cheeky smile, ” Just fine!”
P.S.S. Those of you who don’t believe in ghosts–that’s perfectly OK. Just substitute the phrase “Yesterday Creativity Wrote My Blog.” That will definitely suffice. (And the ghosts won’t mind. They are used to not getting credit for their contributions.)
It was a fascinating blog discussion! 🙂 You should invite the ghost back sometimes!
Not only is it an untypical December (where’s our snow), but now there are ghosts all over the place, right and left, day and night! Cemeteries are such irresistible invitations to stop and tarry alongside the past. No wonder…. Well.
Hey, it just made me think about how I do not pick flowers because it kills them, and then I frowned about the …..contrast maybe, to the deadness of a cemetery and how people add all sorts of ideas to dead. Another thought was, really bad feng shui, immediately followed by, who needs feng shui when dead?!?!/ hehehe
I noted the spark of color and didn’t care quite as much about the flowers. I laughed about the entire blog and associated it with my idea of winter being death, and not having any life. I’ve been busy noticing life. I’m not sure if that noticing is in spite of death, or right along with death. I might find out, I might not.
I also thought about your setting out to do a specific thing before shooting images, and how that usually does NOT work out for me. I tend to get plastic! So, the blog itself was of help to me, in a walking alongside kind of way.
I liked the thoughts that I had about Rumi and his ideas about flowers, death, love, and leaving, and coming back. OH, and then, there was your Rumi blog, which had me giggle for a moment.
I thought about writing too. How do I make my mind decide? Decide to write truth? Decide to write truth hidden within fiction? How do I understand how each and every reader might interpret, so as not to mislead them? How do I watch them misleading themselves? Funny how I later watched a video about Mark Twain.
Interesting that on your way to a baby shower you stop at a cemetery. The wheel rolls on does it not?
If a ghost wrote your blog then that’s good as it means that you’ve not felt the sorrow of having to write such a post for yourself. But I couldn’t see that the post you wrote yesterday (that I’ve seen just now) is bad…. those people lived, they were remembered. It’s the remembering that’s important not that they died. We all die, that’s nature, but we do need to remember and you’ve helped that along. Maybe you were meant to write that post, Kathy.
On the other hand, it might be something within you being an actor in your own life. That’s something that comes to my mind quite often these days apropos all sorts of things.
The spirits are dancing and laughing at all the turmoil they have created for you. Your blog had me wondering if I didn’t want a grave instead of having my ashes tossed to the winds over Lake Superior. However, like you, I talk to my departed loved ones every day and maintain my connection that way. Love these pictures as well Kathy and your “choir on a wire” is my favorite!
Honestly Kathy…I don’t think you need to feel bad at all. No matter if a ghost was behind the post yesterday or not. Either way something needed to be said and you provided a way for the message to get out Have you noticed the interesting thoughts being posted today?. I believe there are no mistakes…that everything happens for a reason….some of which we may not see or understand. And sometimes when things happen, it’s not about us….perhaps the message yesterday was meant for someone else. Thank you for listening to and honoring that quiet whisper.
Oh, Kathy. I fully agree with Brenda! The times when we act outside of our normal, carefully crafted selves are gifts.
Dear Ghost (Kathy, please forward this on),
Thank you for yesterday’s post. It did not make me sad. It made me ponder a bit about death, and those I love who have died, and being reminded of that love is wonderful. Death was a single event. The love lives on.
Dear Ghost, I pray that you feel love, that you know love now and will be enveloped in love, forever more.
Amen Sybil ♥
I too believe the spirits of the departed are with us and I felt that if there were people that were to receive messages from your blog I was one of them. Forgetting people, not passing on the stories of their lives is the tragedy. Flowers represent an acknowledgement of that person’s story.
Those stories are important not only for the spirit, but for the future generations. It gives them “roots”; it makes them understand they are links in a chain. I have been lazy and too self absorbed lately. I have had the spirits around me speaking out, trying to change my path and I have been putting them off. I feel your blog was there way of grabbing me by the collar and shaking me. I have tasks to attend to; I need to think less about my own situation and more about others.
Your writing has purpose; your writing has meaning, whether it is your spirit writing or that of another. If what you wrote had no meaning or truth, it wouldn’t have touched me so deeply. Thank you.
Ok, I can’t spell … that’s another of my shortcomings. 😉
Oh my, Kathy! Really and truly, the ghost did you no harm; personally I thought it was a rather lovely post. Might I suggest that in future you write your post, then sleep on it a bit (a nap would work), give it some thought, make sure it won’t come back to haunt you (tee hee). It’s so sad to spend a life, or a month, or a day, or an hour, regretting having allowed a ghost access to your computer and your blog. You must also learn that the world, and what happens in it, is just not your responsibility. Honest.
In reading through today’s comments I have to say that Carol’s made me laugh:
“…make sure it won’t come back to haunt you (tee hee).”
No explanation necessary!! I have days where the words flow from my brain exactly how I want them to, clear and concise….. and then other days, everything is jumbled up. It doesn’t change the type of person we are. You should never feel guilty for anything that you write, as long as you believe it! Everyone is going to have their own opinions and beliefs about how to honor the dearly departed, and everyone’s wishes need to be respected. Some people feel the need to visit the cemetery, as if they are actually going to “visit” and talk to whoever may be “there”. Others may believe that all they need to do is keep the person (or people) in their hearts, and they are never far away.
Sorry to go off like that….. some subjects are touchy with me (nothing you did or said).
Oh, but you’ve made up for it today. This post made me laugh out loud.
I was so embarrassed by what I posted yesterday, it was pathetic. Mine was much worse than yours. Hope you haven’t read it. I blush with shame just thinking aobut it.
However, I DID get my Christmas card yesterday, and I DID get to read about the thyme stuffing. Tell Barry I loved the article. Thanks for sending it, my friend. You are too, too sweet–a little too fond of plastic flowers in cemetaries, maybe, but lots of fun, too.
Kathy, I will have to pop over to yesterdays blog post and read it now. Today’s story has left me smiling, that’s for sure! 😀
Oh this made me laugh. Like others, yesterday’s post made me stop to consider death a bit. How I wish there was a more environmentally-friendly way to bodily leave this earth. How I’ve never been a fan of those plastic flowers, but then I figured they weren’t left for me anyway, so it was none of my business.
I’m glad you allow ghosts to use your computer occasionally – I like the change of perspective it offers 🙂
Enjoyed this post….And this phrase: “she said in that long-suffering voice, but with a delightful hint of amusement” – somehow I think we’ve all experienced this?
Kathy, I’m smiling too and thinking that our modern electronics have made a lot of ghosts very happy. Just saying…….
Personally I liked yesterday’s post…and photos …and thoughts. So no need to explain anything! We like to put flowers from the garden on my father-in-law’s grave because he did so much work in our yard when he was living. BUt if it were winter and I had a hankering to leave flowers there they’d be artificial just to make them last. And I wouldn’t be ashamed of them, no I wouldn’t.
Dear readers, this is the Ghost. I am glad you liked my story yesterday. It was kind of Kathy to let me use her fingers. It is hard when you are left alone with no family. I missed what most people had in life. I wish I had a child, family. It was a hard life. My cousin died when she was in her 40’s, and she was the last one. I appreciate what you all have said. I am sorry Kathy was upset. I won’t use her fingers without asking her next time. I just didn’t know how to do that.
Dear readers, this Is Kathy. Thank you for all your comments and thoughts both for and against plastic flowers, feelings, thoughts, and ghosts. Dear ghost, don’t worry about using my fingers. It was really beautiful to hear your thoughts. You’re really a good writer, do you know that? Please let me know if you want to say anything else. (Or, truly, you don’t even have to let me know unless I’m in a crabby mood. You do remember about crabby moods on earth, yes? Then it’s always advisable to get permission.) It has been good to meet you. If you show me your grave next time, I’ll sit beside it and tell you a story. Bless you, sweet spirit!
Awwww…so sweet ♥
Good gravy Kathy this is full short story and starting to tip over into a novella. Wow! Glad to see you have company to help you write these lengthy posts. 🙂
Gosh, Terrill, I have been writing MUCH longer posts than this! This is a “baby” post compared to my memoirs which carry on for 1,000-2,000 words PER memoir, I swear. Loving writing so much! (And not minding that ghost’s assistance at all!) Thank you for visiting.
I thought it was a beautiful post. Just saying. 🙂
There are many truths… Love the creaky gate opening into the old cemetery with those pretty autumn leaves…
Thank you again! I thought it was a beautiful post, too. That ghost did a good job. It was just disconcerting to realize afterward that some of the thoughts that rose were not ones I usually hold.
Hahaha, okay, I’m glad I got this clarification…now I know who hijacked your body!
You made me chuckle quite a few times with this post so thank you….needed the laugh after the sadness of the previous one! I’m being haunted by my late grandmother and Christopher Hitchens these last couple of days. Read his last essay against my better judgment and now I can’t sleep at night 😦
But I like people who make me laugh so I think I’m going to click on that button up there which will send me email notifications every time you (or some ghost or other) decide to write something 🙂
Thank goodness for chuckles after sadness! (Or even simultaneously, although that may seem improbable or impossible…) Thank you, thank you, thank you for subscribing to this blog. My only Christmas wish was 200 blog readers by Christmas, LOL. I can’t guarantee whether you’ll be reading the ghost or me or other strange apparitions, though. (You are going on my blog roll, asap, cuz I’m so excited.)
Hahaha! You’re awesome! 😀