Saturday, November 28, 2015

Your One Wild and Precious Life (One of My Favorite Trifecta Entries EVER!!!)

Blogger's Note: I wrote this post on November 27, 2012. I have reposted it every year since on the very same day. Yesterday, I was busy being a day-after-Thanksgiving-Day slug. I forgot. So here it is, a three year old post one day late. 

It remains one of my favorites ever for several reasons. It literally flew off my fingertips conveying my feelings at the time. It was a wholly and intensely cathartic experience. In many ways, I feel the same today as I did then. That is your only clue...

Thanks for re-reading with me.


This isn’t about anyone, nobody at all. It's where an exhausted mind went one morning in late November. I didn’t question it. I simply ran to catch up.


“Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?”
- Mary Oliver, New and Selected Poems

Fool me once…

Fool me twice…

They caressed and played with my senses.

Your words,

Written, spoken, poems, songs

Were deceptive.

They're hollow I told you at the time
But still, 

"I believe in your confusion".

Looking back through crystal eyes,

I question you more,


Is it just your heart that's
Misleading, elusive

Or all of you?
You are a shell of the person you could be.

You appear so hollow.
Merely a shadow of someone

Trapped within yourself
Never able to get out. Be out. Feel free.

Happy there?
Is it safe enough for you?

Does your passion know where you're hiding?

You’ll glance back with regret, longing, distaste, maybe,

At your life, 

For yourself, but

Probably not.

How’s the view from la-la-land?

Would you even admit the truth?

A better question is, do you know it?

So don’t drown in tears from failures and hurts past

When you realize it,

As the movie reel plays it all back.

Premiering today "Your One Wild and Precious Life".

Sit down; get comfortable; admission is free just for you.

"Beautiful Loser" looping in the background.

I hope it doesn't hurt your feelings.


You had choices at the forks.

Made one or didn’t

Which is a choice, too.
You did it yourself.

Your creation.

It’s all on you.
So what will you make of your allotted one and only?

Do you even know?

I really don't think you have any idea.

I do

For mine and

I'll own everything, too.

I'd rather look back and say,

"I can't believe I did that."

My blessings,

My mistakes.


I will wager in pursuit of dreams.

Will you?

I wish on stars for many things,

For you.

And it's the same mistake

Over and over again.


33-333 words using the third definition:
Hollow: lacking in real value, sincerity, or substance: false, meaningless <hollow promises> <a victory over a weakling is hollow and without triumph - Ernest Beaglehole (who's he?)


Unknown said...

Wow - Loved this.Thought provoking and challenging. Love the image of the shell.

Bo said...

Brilliant! I love how you had to say that this wasn't about anyone. I will write stuff sometimes and Lance will say, "I didn't do that" lol.

Gina said...

That's how I feel about life. If you don't fill it it's an empty shell. I'm challenging myself as well. Thanks, Kelly.

Gina said...

Thank you, Bo. I thought I should make that clear but it could be about anyone really. Friends, lovers...

I believe I've seen a tweet or two where you've said, "not about you, honey". Pretty funny!

Josh said...

I tell my kids all the time that not making a choice is still a choice. There is no way to stop the clock, so you might as well do the best you can and accept that you will learn and grow along the way.

lumdog2012 said...

Wow! This is fantastic. You have described certain people to a "T". And this piece is beautifully written too. I wrote a poem for this prompt but I can't put it up there. It's just too personal. But yours says pretty much what mine said, but you said it a lot better!

Gina said...

It's a hard lesson to swallow...those choices made by not deciding at all. Been there many times by being a passive participant in my own life. I've talked with my kids about it especially in middle school, HS times. They've also seen the results first hand. Yes. Do your best. Make the best decisions you can weighing the factors but every now and then you have to put yourself out there into that scary place and take a leap or two.

Gina said...

Thanks, lumdog. I've known people like this too. It sort of just tumbled out so I'm glad you liked it! Make it third person then, change a few things to make it not feel as much so and share, please. I doubt I said it better, just differently. Come on, dude! Can't leave a friend hanging by themselves...

Samantha Brinn Merel said...

This is such a cool piece, and I can really recognize the kind of person you are writing about. I love the idea of living your own life, for better or worse. Owning your mistakes, learning from them, and moving on.

Gina said...

Thanks, Samantha. It was fun to write. I'm glad the fictional character was relatable (it's not you!). I'm big on owning it. I make more mistakes than anyone I know. Most aren't bad and certainly in the spirit of trying to do what's right but sometimes purely for fun/excitement. I've learned a lot from my wrong/bad decisions. I'd rather make one though than be stuck with the results of not having made one at all. I move on well.

Stacie @ Snaps and Bits said...

Nicely done! I haven't explored Trifecta yet. I'm scared to get sucked into anything else. But, it seems it's suiting you!

Thomas Charles MacInnes said...

At the risk of sounding like a teenager, that was epic!!!! What fabulous writing. Next to the "Anniversary Challenge" piece, this is my favourite work of yours that I've had the pleasure to read. Very well done!

Ruby Manchanda said...

Great writing.

Gina said...

Thanks Stacie! I think you'd really like Trifecta. You are a great fiction writer and the prompts lend themselves there. During the week it's only 33-333 words and weekends are usually 33-words. Just 2challenges. Very creative, supportive community, too.

Gina said...

Wow, Tom! Thank you very much for the positive comments. I'm so happy you liked it. The "Anniversary Chalenge" was fun too so thanks for appreciating that effort as well.

Gina said...

Thank you, Ruby.

Steph said...

Powerful, Gina. No choice is a choice. Fill your life. Look back and say I can't believe I did that. Terrific. I love the staccato structure of it. Packed with emotion. Really good!

Ginny Marie said...

Beautiful! (I can especially relate to that first paragraph...I'm finding the words are not coming as easily as they did at the beginning of November! Three days left!)

Gina said...

I felt emotional writing this so I'm happy you picked up on that. We only get one life here on earth. Might as well slide into home plate, right? I like trying to be adventurous with my decisions and the things I do. Of course, I'm still a mom and wife so I can't do EVERYTHING I would like but pretty darn close. Now if I could win the Powerball today... Thanks for liking.

Gina said...

Thanks so much, Ginny! These words came easily. Other times lately, like now, they haven't been. I hear you on the 3 days left, then I may take a break to look for more words.

Draug said...

I imagine this as a challenge one spouse would say to the other in the heat of an argument. It's really powerful!

DEZMOND said...

I found myself in the poem, Gina, deeply touching, a kick in the bum....

Latitudes of a Day said...

One should revel in the epitaph "No regrets." Well done!

Gina said...

It is a challenge from a lover, or close friend, or between a husband and wife. I imagined lovers here. Thanks for the comment, Draug.

Gina said...

Me too, Dezmond. I'm guilty of being passive on occasion but not nearly as much as I used to be. Here's a swift one...

Gina said...

If you make enough mistakes like I do, you have the opportunity to learn a lot. There are always regrets. You just need to make sure you can live with them. Some are harder than others. Thanks!

TMWHickman said...

Interesting imagery. I could picture the two individuals in the moment of their argument. Intense!

Unknown said...

Some interesting lines that stood out like, "I believe in your confusion," and "beautiful loser." They're kind of paradoxical.

Gina said...

What's going on up there, i asked myself. Yes, I crawled out on a limb yesterday. I'm not sure if it was an argument between two people or what was raging through someone's head about another person.

Gina said...

Beautiful Loser is a Bob Seger song that came to mind about a person like this.

kymm said...

misleading, elusive heart is wonderful, Gina.
omg do we already have to explain who Bob Seger is???

Gina said...

I've known hearts like this. Hasn't everyone?

I guess we do, Kymm. He's always been one of my favorites from way back. I'm dating myself apparently.

Anonymous said...

I 'heard' this conversation. Our lives are made up of a bunch of choices, some work out well...others, not so much. The key is learning and growing. I loved the last two lines - the endless loop of a mistake.

Gina said...

That was my point. Making choices or not and living with them. I'd rather make them. High five to learning and growing and I'll add moving on. Particularly with people we care about, we re-make mistakes hoping for a different outcome each time. There's always an element of hopefulness, isn't there?

Kinley Dane said...

This was a great post! I can see why it's one of your favorites. It is very strong. And it's meaning is so real and true!

LaissezFaire said...

"Merely a shadow of yourself trapped in someone else. " My favorite. That line sang to me.

Gina said...

Thanks so much, LF!!!