@atinylife the greatest of these is

I may speak in the tongues of yoga and of cycling for miles, but if I still love food, I will become neither svelte nor sinuous. And if I have fast days, or avoid dairy or meat, or if I have all faith, and chunter on about my heart health and how weight is just a number, but still love food, I am not, and will never be thin. If I give away all my Dairy Milks, and hand over my cola bottles, I may kid myself on I’m being ‘good,’ but if I still love food, I gain, um, everything …the greatest of these is

 

Food is patient; food is kind; food does not insist on its own way; it is not as irritable or resentful as I am about societal beauty standards; it rejoices in my ‘wrong’doings.

It rejoices … in my fat rolls.

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@atinylife sing

You know I try not to think about male privilege all the time…

Right, now everyone else has clicked off this post – it’s just – OK, I admit that I have never learned to play an instrument. I play oboe, but that doesn’t translate into a folk session environment. I’m lucky to have several people in my life who play the guitar for me – and I’m grateful for each and every one of them.

sing

 

But without them, I can’t sing at a session. The men usually have huge voices, and can sing away. Folk join in, or listen, or sometimes they don’t, but it doesn’t matter – because they can be heard.

It doesn’t often happen that I’m at a session without anyone to play for me. But when it does, I’m left feeling less-than. Because my voice, literally can’t be heard.

Cheryl Smith: @atinylife Letter

I wrote an angry letter to the council yesterday.

As you probably know, this is both an art and a science, with rules pertaining to both.

The science bit involves precision. They must be persuaded that they are Just Plain Wrong and should change their minds immediately. Here you must stick to the facts.

But let’s not forget that this is an Angry Letter, and strictly speaking, ‘I find this situation unacceptable’ is a fact too. And there’s the art of it – the invoking of emotion. Of course, the artist has little control over the audience’s response, but I’m hoping for something like contrition that inspires action, which brings us back to the objective – and further from the notion of art.

If it is an art at all, it’s disposable, once it’s achieved its aim. As is the anger, thankfully.

 

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#atinylife car scraper

Scraping the car in the morning, I was reminded of how much it reminds me of sitting in the freezing cold watching my Dad do the same thing.

car scraperHow pleasing it was to watch him methodically remove the sugary coating from the windows so we could see out again, the fan blowing so loud we couldn’t hear ourselves think.

Now I have to sort my own car out.

But: I have a car.

I live somewhere with crisp frosty mornings, beautiful clear skies.

I got a new scraper the other day and it’s a good one.

I have my fans going full blast so when I’m ready to drive the car won’t be as cold.

I have excellent, thick waterproof gloves.

And unlike my youngest, I can reach the middle of the windscreen.

 

Just a tinylife job that brings joy!

#atinylife going, going

Going…going.

ten thousand I am bid:

fifteen at the back,

come on now,

this unique lot! You’ll not see this again.

 

Puffin searches in vain for sandeels.

Swan sickens, poisoned by anglers’ lead.

Gannet, strong, snared in plastic net.

Spring rains fail, sand sweeping over pasture.

 

Fifteen at the back, twenty five online

Yes, sir, that’s more like it, thirty-five for this trophy

stuffed and so beautifully mounted.

You’ll not see another, not anywhere

– forty at the front –

now who’ll give me the reserve price? Fifty?

Thank you, sir. Going… going…

 

In secret hideouts, bitterns still boom

guarded.

Otters gambol and play,

no longer hunted.

Polecats lurk

White tailed eagle soars.

 

Sixty thousand I am bid.

Any advance on sixty? For this handsome Great Auk

shot, stuffed and preserved for posterity.

All done at sixty thousand?

Going…going…gone.

going going

#atinylife Trauma

I’ve been spending a lot of time thinking about what I let my kids see recently. Do I tell them the truth too often? Should I let them read that book/watch that film?

Then the other night the wee one came downstairs crying.

‘I’m upset about that thing you were talking about earlier.’

Oh crap.

‘Which thing?’ I was racking my brains. But he couldn’t tell me – he was too upset.

Then I remembered.

‘It was the Botox!’ He nodded and started to cry again.

Trauma

The story was about someone who had been given such bad lip fillers that her lips bled every night.

 

I told him I was sure that person had been all fixed up and was fine now.

So I’ve decided this: you‘ll never know what’s going to upset them.

I’ll just keep doing my best.

#atinylife Kickstarter

If you follow my Facebook or Twitter, you might have seen that I’ve got a new fancy job this year: poet-in-residence at the Lanterne Rouge cafe, Gifford.

And me being me, I’ve come up with a hare-brained scheme for a main project to deliver.

I’ve hosted a few events now. I’ve performed music and poetry. I’ve had poems, a novel, and short stories published. But I’ve never edited a book on my own.

So here is a link to my Kickstarter campaign. I’m goikickstarterng to try and raise £1650 to publish an anthology – Lanterne Rouge: The Last. Proceeds made after paying printers and poets will go to St Columba’s hospice, which is Lanterne Rouge’s charity of choice.

I would so love to make enough to see this project through. Please can you help with a pledge, or a share? Or both?