Hidden Serenity

2016 hasn’t been an easy year for most of us, but I want to focus on the good little things still out there. The simple, peaceful things we don’t always notice.

 

Hidden Serenity

Sleeping in on a rainy morning

The sound of coffee brewing

Afternoon tea

Cozy cafes

The first warm day of spring – no jackets needed

Fireflies & campfires

Small bookstores hidden in old cities

Catching up with friends over coffee

Long car rides with good music

Gourmet chocolates

Star Wars marathons

 

 

 

 

Adventures in Art – An Introduction Poem

Hi everyone! It’s the first Friday of the month, which means it’s time for Adventures in Art! (Is this a cheesy title? I’m still trying things out). This is when I’ll post something art-related that I’ve been doing recently whether that be photography, painting, a craft, or poetry. I wrote this introduction poem for my first poetry class the other night and, since I have no intention of publishing it, I thought I’d share it with you all.

“Aries”

They say the Aries is strong

Impulsive, firey

Brimming with courage and curiosity

I’m not much of an Aries

Despite silent words from silver constellations

I relate to the Taurus

Stubborn, materialistic

But patient

Cooled, practical

Keeping myself down to earth

Where I’m content with the small successes

And enamored with adventure

With unfulfilled wanderlust

An amateur artist

Searching for simple serenity

 

The Dreamer

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Sleep came to her slowly and gracefully, but felt painful and loud

In a dream she trudged through damp grass

Toward the edge of a dock

Morning birds screeched

The hound wailed

The dreamer did not respond

But her bones did quiver

She swayed back and forth until she was falling

Slowly, slowly

At last she collided with the pond

Water pierced itself into her every pore

It ran through her lungs and cradled her veins

Darkness dripped onto the pale blue

Light flickered in and out from the mourning sun above

Shadowed hands reached from the sand and grabbed onto her legs

More rose from the bottom of the lake and gripped her bones

They clawed at her face and pulled at her hair

Water filled her every sense and chilled her mind

She was sinking

Further, further

The shadows pulled her down into their world

They held her and suffocated her with their faceless bodies

They drank from her skin

They inhaled her breath

They broke her apart

Piece by piece

Until there was nothing left.

Peter Pan in Hyde Park

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Unfortunately, the Mr. Darcy statue coming out of the water had been moved by the time my group arrived in London. Still, I got to have a nice walk around the are and find the Peter Pan statue.

What I loved most about finding this was the people around it. There wasn’t much of a crowd near it, but it drew in more people than the other statues around. It’s something that people of any age can get excited about. Peter Pan is a Disney movie from most of our childhood’s and it’s also an old fairytale still being read and told. It’s a story about adventure, imagination, and coming to terms with growing older, but realizing that it’s not such a bad thing.

It goes to show how stories last. Peter Pan was once just words being scribbled down and now there’s a statue in a widely visited park for people to smile at and take pictures of. This book was published in 1911, the Disney film in 1953, along with 6 other adaptions including Pan coming out later this year. This character has been around for over 100 years and people are still watching him on screen and taking pictures of his statue. Fairytales are part of culture and we continue to react strongly to them. We want to see more of them, see them updated, see art of them in city parks.

If you’re in Hyde Park, I’d recommend looking for it. It’s beautifully made and the more you look the more you’ll find. The details are amazing and, as someone who grew up with and loved the Disney adaption, I’m thankful for the opportunity to see it in person.

Stone Henge

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The morning my group went to visit Stone Henge, it rained and stormed more than it had the entire 2 weeks we’d been there. Up until then the weather had been wonderful considering it was late December/early January. It was surprisingly sunny and always wavering from low 40’s to high 50’s. It was perfect for walking about and enjoying the sights until that morning and this was the only day we experienced terrible weather conditions.

We first visited what I refer to as the “knock-off Stone Henge.” The real name is Avebury. The history is interesting if you ever want to research it, but that day I just did not care. Maybe it was because I wanted to see the real Stone Henge or maybe because I was getting hailed on. Either way, we didn’t stay long. The place looked abandoned that morning, there was mud everywhere, and by the time we got back on the bus we were all soaking wet.

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The rain only stopped briefly at Stone Henge, but the wind was awful. Luckily there was transportation that took you up to the sight and back down to the gift shop/museum. Before we arrived, our professor was saying how we would have to make the hike up there (I still don’t know if she was joking or not) and it was at that point I debated if seeing Stone Henge was worth bearing the cold wind and mud up to my ankles.

Even if I had to hike, it was definitely worth it. I would have been so angry with myself if I didn’t see it. It’s smaller in person and not exactly this wonder I had set in my mind, but I couldn’t look away from it. Maybe all the mysteries regarding this strange circle aren’t as mystic as TV shows, films, and music videos would make you believe, but it’s still a scrap of history that’s managed to keep our culture’s attention for centuries.

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I loved the museum and seeing who these people might have been and how they might have lived. There was a video that played on a loop in the middle of the exhibit which showed Stone Henge throughout the years. It was honestly the creepiest thing I’ve ever seen given there was no music only nature sounds and it speeds by so the people appear as shadows lurking from behind the pillars. Yet I watched it loop a few times because, again, I couldn’t look away.

I think Stone Henge has stayed with us because it’s so odd and yet so simple. It’s perfect for constructing myths and legends around it and that’s why people face the rain and the wind and the hail and their own exhaustion just to catch a glimpse of it. It’s filled with stories, some true and some not. We can create our own identity for it and that makes it stand out from all the ordinary sights we’re surrounded with everyday. It’s something to think about and to be inspired by.

So is it worth a hike in the rain? Yes, I would say it is.

St. Paul’s Cathedral in London, England

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St. Paul’s Cathedral in London is absolutely gorgeous and with so much to explore inside. Also see that tower on the right? You can climb all the way to the top and believe it or not the girl who’s terrified of heights took a deep breath and went for it.

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The view was amazing, but it wasn’t enough. Visitors can climb up even higher if they so wish. It felt long, the staircase is winding and filled with a great deal of waiting time. The top is so narrow that only a few people can be up at a time and you must keep moving in the circle so the rest can take in the sights before night falls.

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This was easily one of the most terrifying, bravest, and brilliant decision I’ve ever made. The view was breathtaking with the sun just beginning to set behind London. I could see the Eye just off in the distance perfectly still as the city lights began to flicker to life. Just faintly I could see the outline of the Eiffel Tower from miles and miles off. For a moment I forgot that my knees should be shaking together. I wanted to stay up there until the sun set, but of course I had to keep moving. Still, it was one of the moments I can hardly capture in words, let alone in a blog post.

If you’re ever in London and the sun is setting, please take this climb. The serenity and just awe you feel is well worth the hike.