Color the World | Poetry Breakdown

Hello!

I thought I write a poem for a change especially with this subject! Also, it’s almost finals week so I’m going to apologize ahead of time if my posts become more inconsistent. Writing will still be happening though!

“Color the World”
There’s no fear in this art
except if a stray note runs
and breaks your heart instead of
comforting it.
There should be full confidence in this art
as you fight warriors with your arms
and sending them into the depths
of raging Beethoven.
There’s no worry in this art
as you cradle it in your heart
and it sings lullabies back to you.
There should be power.
There should be strength.
There should be a gentle caress with a loving and guiding hand.

It can be breath-takingly beautiful
the swelling and the swirling
the gradual buildup
the shocking crash
the feeling you get when you want to
dance
It can be breath-takingly beautiful
the clash of the notes making you cock your head
the start and stop and you pause to catch your breath
the winding dizziness that drives you insane
It can be breath-takingly beautiful

By creating music,
we create the world
by adding color.
Even though we appear complacent
with only our fingers and voices
expressing more than we ever could.
Even though we are simply reading
whatever someone wrote years ago
Even though we say we despise the art
when in reality we love our craft.
By being music,
we color the world.

This piece was dedicated to my twelve years of being involved in music, especially orchestra. I started playing the violin when I was 8 and slowly, but surely worked up to playing in an ensemble in high school. Then, when I found out that non-music majors could join the orchestra only through audition, I started to word towards that goal. After a couple auditions and many practice sessions, one of which involved my old middle school teacher, I made it into the Symphony Orchestra. When I first played with them in February, I started tearing up a bit because of how beautiful it sounded. It was such an honor to be playing with them. In March, I had my first concert with them and leading up to it, I practiced whenever I was free for nearly an hour. I didn’t care that I sat in the back. I just loved being surrounded by so many talented musicians and being able to converse in sync with our musical skills. And just this past Sunday, I played in my second concert – the final one of the season. And I’m so happy that my music has taken me this far and let me tell you, it wasn’t easy. Sometimes, it would take a dozen extra hours of practice until I could finally understand the rhythm or play it up to speed. Sometimes I would get extremely frustrated with my instrument and want to give up so many times. I was never really concertmaster or head of the section. If I was, I was there because of pity. That didn’t really concern me though. I didn’t care about the competition, I just wanted to be involved in an orchestra. Also, I’m really glad for my friends who went to my concerts. 😀 There’s a more comprehensive story to this part of my life, but I know that music will always be a part of me because it brings me and other people happiness.

So, with this background, this piece is filled with admiration for this craft. It starts with needing to have confidence in what you’re playing especially in your instrument and that you shouldn’t let a wrong net get you down. It can make you feel all sorts of things. It can empower you and comfort you. Music is pretty music tied with emotion or have you feel something you haven’t felt in a while. Sometimes, the music doesn’t clash and it’s so beautiful. Sometimes, that beauty is dissonance, lack of harmony among musical notes. Whatever floats your boat. Playing an instrument could be romanticized to being easy to pick up and learn, but with skill comes practice and since we’re very human, we don’t want to go through with the hard work. It’s not really something of habit, but something you become, a part of your identity. Like, I can call myself a violinist because I play the violin. And I believe that music can really bring life to things hence the color analogy.

Anyways, I hope you enjoyed this poem! Look forward to reading about my musical journey!

Alice

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Better | Mentality

Hello friends,
It’s been a while since I’ve written a mentality piece. Here’s how I’m doing.

The last time I checked in, I was using distraction to help myself out and I ended up feeling quite conflicted about that. That was during the summer, one of the more difficult summers I’ve had to deal with. Through this difficulty, I had long talks with my friend and he helped me out a lot, so upon coming back to school, I had a lot to look forward to. I was starting fresh again.

I found myself more comfortable with myself and the campus. I didn’t care as much and I only cared about things that really mattered to me to save my sanity. I found myself appreciating little things because I knew that last year, I wasn’t doing well at all. I knew I was lucky to even have friends that I have now. I found myself being more willing to talk to people and I got better at it! I had to tell my mind that it’s fine. When I did mess up like I did something awkward or I stuttered, I would just tell myself that it’s still fine. Just try again. I just laughed off my little slip ups and walked away. I learned that distractions aren’t healthy and I slowly learned to deal with things right as they come or just avoid letting something be so big that it would crush me.

I’m happy to announce that I’m doing better now. 😀

I did fall a couple times, but I rose up faster than was able to last year because of the people I’ve surrounded myself with. I still get nervous and shaky, but I remember that I can try again and that people will listen to me. I just have to get it out of myself. And I realized that since I’m a student, I should not let stress get the best of me. For some time, I was actually quite sick because of stress.

But I’m better now. 🙂

I slowly found that I can’t really tell everyone everything for the sake of my sanity and for the sake of not spreading myself thin. I’m at the point where I’m defining friendship and tailoring that definition to me. I’m at that point where relationships are popping into my mind and I start to wonder. Am I ready?

Here comes a new challenge now that I’m starting new and it feels good to be regaining my self-esteem and confidence. I refuse to beat myself up because I deserve love. I’m going to start by really loving myself. As the saying goes, “Change starts from yourself”. You just have to try again and you can get through it. It’s not about “Everything will be okay.” but, it’s about “Hang in there!”

You are capable. You are enough. You can.

Thank you for all your help and for listening to me.

Stay strong, friends.

Alice

Wilbur | Quick Piece Breakdown

 Wilbur

As simple as this piece looks, there’s actually more to it than it seems. I feel like the simpler the piece is, the more meaning there could be about the piece unless the story is, “The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.” Then, you would just be over analyzing it.

Anyways, I wanted to write something that wasn’t romance and more reflective.

Side note: if you haven’t noticed, I’m still in the process of finding my voice and style in writing. With each story I write, they not only help release something about myself, but I can also discover what I like in writing and what I don’t like in writing. As of now, it seems like I like romance with flowy descriptions and conversation. Maybe that has to do with what’s happening now. I know that since I started out in poetry, my writing is more “flowery” or “descriptive” per say. I’m still working on the aspect of plot lines to hopefully expand to a greater story ie. a novel. Also, I’ve noticed that I like to always have some sort of lesson in my pieces whether it’s subtle or not.

Okay, back to the analysis.

This story quickly goes through this man’s life, but it centers around his name. I got this idea from my older writing habits. I used to plan out the character way ahead of writing the actual story so much so that I loose track of the plot. Then, I started to focus more on the plot and I just gave my characters “plain” names, names without so much meaning or names with meaning that don’t need to be explored. In “Wilbur”, I carefully chose a name that had a deeper meaning. I wanted him to stand out. Through this, he would find himself and as you can see through this story, it took him his entire life and other people to help him. As for Meghan, it means pearl even though I don’t mention the meaning and it appears that she is just at the sidelines. In fact, Meghan was a key part in Wilbur’s life by being a mother, wife and friend (that sounds like some eulogy just now) and she essentially helped him find himself thus making her pretty unique in his life, a pearl.

At this point in my life, I’m discovering more things which is pretty interesting and overwhelming at the same time. I’m learning more about who I am as each day passes and my definition of friendship. I’ve been on this journey for nearly three years now and it’s just going to keep going. We change with time and how we respond to change is what defines us. For example, I wrote the entirety of this blog post in my class. Ten years from now, I would probably think that I was stupid, but my current self doesn’t really care. 😉 (I really should)

Anyways, don’t be afraid to take some risks. It adds some spice in your life. 🙂

Alice

Wilbur | Quick Piece

This is a story of my life. My parents met, they fell in love and got married. Shortly afterwards, I was born. Then, two years later, my sister was born. As siblings usually are, they don’t get along when younger, but learn to really appreciate each other when they’re older. In school, I met lots of people and some became my enemies and some became my close friends. When I went to college, I lost contact with them, but I made up by making more incredible friends. They changed my life and I chose my best friend I met in college to be my best man. I married an amazing girl named, Meghan. A year later, our two sons were born. We wanted just one, but we were surprised with twins. Before they came, I never imagined myself being a father. Now, I don’t know what I would do without them.

When I was little, my mother would always tell me that my name was special. She would pat my head and smile like she was anointing me with my name’s special meaning. Of course, I would beg her to tell me what it meant and she would smile again and hug me. I loved her hugs. Before she passed away, she reminded me again that my name was special. I learned that my name meant that I was brilliant and I didn’t feel like it really fit me. I liked my name, but the meaning just clashed with me. I just went with the flow and did things how they’re suppose to be. I don’t go above and beyond. I didn’t impact society. I just went with the flow. I asked Meghan about what my mom said and she nodded and made her thinking face. “I don’t think she means it literally. I think she’s saying that you have to embrace yourself.” she said soundly. At first, I thought she was being sarcastic, but based on the look she gave me she was serious. I shrugged and said that maybe it was true.

Twenty years later and I have seven grandchildren, three girls and four boys. My dear Meghan passed away two years ago and I miss her everyday. Life is kind of dull, but I still get by because I’ve finally figured out what my name means. What Meghan said and what my mom said is what drives me everyday. I’m brilliant even if I’m just Wilbur. I’m brilliant because I’m Wilbur.

Rain Down on Me | Quick Piece Breakdown

Rain Down on Me

First of all, I’m sorry for not publishing this yesterday; I hope this will do. Secondly, it seems that I’m writing more romance stories! Let me know how I’m doing in this genre and if you like it. I would really appreciate your feedback! Also, I want to increase the amount of blog posts, but I can’t exactly guarantee that because this last month of school is getting to be quite hectic.

Now, let’s get started with this analysis.

On a first read, this story follows a woman’s stream of consciousness. She had just separated from her husband after being in disagreement with him for years. The couple has attempted to hide their disagreements and the fact that they no longer love each other from the public. The woman breaks down after driving away and finds herself crying into the rain, hence the title, rain down on me. Along comes her neighbor, someone she was certain didn’t know about her situation and her neighbor instructs her to come back with her and to talk it out. Reluctantly, the woman follows her and listens to a story that her neighbor tells her. Her neighbor tells the woman how she met her husband. Through this story, the woman reflects on her situation. At the end, I don’t tell you how it ends up whether her husband is furious with her for leaving, whether they work it out for a little, but it still ends up falling apart, whether she divorces him and starts fresh. We don’t know. It’s the mystery that drives this story.

If you’ve been reading my stories for a while, then you may know why I chose to leave the characters unnamed. I wanted the audience to be able to connect with the characters and to also have a loose personality, but with strong dialogue and backstory in order to make them feel real. They could be you.

Also, in this story, there is a lot of internal dialogue. The woman explains to the audience how her relationship with her husband is going as well as what they’re trying to do to keep themselves private and isolated. The woman also questions her decisions without ever vocalizing them. Once again, by writing it close to a stream of consciousness, I wanted the audience to be able to relate with it.

I made sure to parallel, “The rain pelted down the windshield, the wipers barely able to catch up.” to give the audience a flashback moment or just to help the audience bring them back to the current situation after a long paragraph of explanations and backstory. And that goes for the title, rain down on me. It could literally mean that as the woman got out of the car and started to scream, rain was falling on her. I was going to have her be angry at God and everyone else and to scream, “Rain down on me!” but I think we can already infer that without the dialogue. The title also means that her sorrows are finally coming down on her and she’s accepting it. Through her acceptance of what went wrong, she can move forwards and follow through with the second step.

As for the neighbor, I wanted her message to be that your pain doesn’t go unnoticed. Her neighbor knew because she has been through something similar, so she decided to help. She doesn’t really force her opinions onto the woman, but just told the woman what she had been through as a guide of what to do. I guess the neighbor could be considered as “neutral good” if going by the alignment system.

Anyways, I hope you enjoyed the story and analysis!

Alice

Rain Down on Me | Quick Piece

The rain pelted down the windshield, the windshield wipers barely able to catch up with the amount of rain. I continued driving down the interstate with water flying everywhere, but I was at ease for once in my life. An hour ago, I was still inside, but I felt like there was a storm in my heart. My husband and I no longer loved each other, but we just felt trapped in the social norms. Whenever we go outside, we hold hands, but as soon as we step back through the door, our hands immediately separate. Our voices soar high and low only to realize that the neighbors were home. It’s so foolish that we do this, but we hurry down to the basement where there are no windows and no prying neighbors to hear us. We had to maintain the illusion that we were still okay when it definitely wasn’t the case. This time, we chose to yell at each other about the mistake we made when we married each other. The first time I heard that argument, I couldn’t stop crying. By now, all I wanted to do was to keep yelling until he exploded into a million pieces or that he would say that I was right. Wasn’t I right? By the time we were thirty minutes into the argument, we could feel that it was coming to an end. We were too confident in ourselves, the fact that we wouldn’t hesitate to leave each other once the neighbors were gone. Both of us kept a packed suitcase in our cars whenever this situation rose. For the first time and the only time, I felt like the time was now. We sat at opposite ends of the basement, not a word was being exchanged anymore. We had said our good byes long ago, maybe at the alter or maybe the night she appear in my place. The neighbors finally left to take their daughter to dance class and I was the first one out the door. And I drove as fast as I can to anywhere, but there. That morning, the clouds seemed to be looming of something about to happen. This afternoon, the clouds released what they’re intended for.
The rain pelted down the windshield, the wipers barely able to catch up. Tears streamed down my face and I found myself wailing through the storm. What have I done? What have we done? We’ve made mistakes worthy for sentence in a lifetime. Where am I going to go? This was all my fault, but at this point there’s no turning back. Everything that I had said leading up to this moment, the threats, the accusations and the insults, they came from my mouth. I pulled my car over and started to sob harder than ever, releasing my sorrows into the car until I couldn’t stand my own wails. I flung open the door, hoping for some fresh air and was hit with a wave of rainwater. I quickly shut the car door and stood under the rain, feeling each rain drop hitting my face. I let my tears mix with the rain, not worried that my clothes was getting absolutely soaked. I stood under the rain until it suddenly stopped and I quickly got cold. I was about to get back into my car, turn up the heat when a car pulled up in front of mine. A wave of fear pulsed through me, thinking that my husband had found me or even worse, he had seen me sobbing under the rain. Instead of my husband, our neighbors stepped out. I could see her daughter still sitting in the back seat of the car as she got out and walked up to my window. I slowly rolled it down, expecting some questioning. And yet, I was surprised again. She gently said, “Hun, all of us knew. Why were you two hiding it?” I pretended not to know what she’s talking about and muttered that I just got caught in the rain. She laughed in my face and leaned closer and I wanted to close the window on her “Hun, let me help you. Follow my car and we can talk at my house.” I protested and said that I didn’t want to go back home even if it was next door. She rolled her eyes and commanded me to follow her. She pulled away and I reluctantly followed her, passing by familiar streets sending unfriendly reminders. I scowled and pulled into her driveway, daring not to look at my own house. After telling her daughter to play outside, we sat down at the dining room table over two slices of cheesecake she made herself. I didn’t touch it. While she ate, she talked about her college years and how she would date a different guy each week and she made sure to tell them that she loved them before she broke up with them. I thought she was a jerk until she started talking about her husband. She talked about how he was into her, but he had heard about her habits, so he kept at a distance. Then, I thought he was the jerk. Eventually they started dating and it came down the one week period when she decided to break up with him. For the first time, he surprised her by saying, “I never loved you. Why would you tell me that you loved me when I never did? How could you also spend so less time only to end it like this? Are you even trying?” It was the third question that really got to her. With her blue eyes and her soft features, she asked me the same question her then-boyfriend asked her, “Are you even trying?” Then, she simply got up and went outside to join her daughter. I looked at the clock and saw that it was nearly 7 o’clock. Shouldn’t her husband be back by now? I started getting ready to leave when I noticed a picture frame on the wall. It was actually a plaque honoring her husband for the philanthropy work before he passed away. Underneath was a pink sticky note that read, “I love you now.” I quickly left before she could see the tears running down my face. I drove to a nearby hotel and sat in the room, the question resonating in my head. I lay awake for hours, uncertain of what to do, but my mind continued to race with the question.
The next morning, I stood poised in front of my door, my hand raised ready to knock. I knew my husband was home because his car was still in the driveway. I whispered to myself, “I’m ready.”

Calculus | Quick Piece Breakdown

Calculus

This piece was a different one with the anger, cursing and unhappy ending. Nevertheless, I think it was a good one and I wrote it mostly to work on a different emotion and story line. I also wrote it on two occasions, both in a lab waiting on my friend.

This story follows Evan around who is an engineering student stuck inside doing homework while his roommate, Keenan is outside playing frisbee. Evan contemplates the meaning of his homework and after a while, his roommate comes back outside and starts talking about a girl who he met while playing frisbee. It turns out that Evan was also interested in that girl, Marcie but he never vocalized it. Evan lashes out and they get into a fight that ends up with both of them in tears.

First of all, I didn’t realize that I already used the name, Evan before in one of my stories. Maybe they’re the same person following the same timeline. Maybe they’re probably different people. Anyways, this just shows you how I pick names for my characters now. I just use whatever name that comes up to my mind as long as the name doesn’t belong to a friend of mine. If I can’t think of anything, then I use a random name generator. I try not to pay too much attention to the meaning of the name because most of the time, the character makes the name and not vice versa.

Secondly, I wanted the reader to really think on multiple levels about judgement, friendship, loneliness and obsession. Also, there’s the question of whether Evan did the right thing, Keenan doing the right thing or either of them not doing the right thing? Who would you side with? Despite the story being initially straight forward, there can be many interpretations.

I hope you enjoyed this piece!

Alice