With December announcing itself through the giant blanket of snow on the ground, I’m taking some time to turn over in my head what time has settled into a quiet layer of dusty forgetting.

  • This year I graduated from university and took a gap year.
  • This year I began to embrace a completely different rhythm of living and found the unknotting process painful but refreshing.

I have come another step towards comfort in my skin.

Now that I am firmly one-third through my growing pains, they have ceased to be growing pains and are merely that quiet process of being that is also becoming. I have learned more than I imagined again, about my fullness of self and my relationship to this world I live in.

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The irregularities of being a freelance writer is something I love greatly. The fact that I do not operate on a clearly defined schedule means I am constantly forced to be proactive about searching out projects and work for myself. To do this, I have to be engaged with my city, with circumstances and also with my self. The locus of my work is how I invest, manage, and produce my creative input and output.

I have learned a lot about my preferences, principles and ideals. Looking for work means I make decisions often about whether or not to apply for jobs, how to write a smashing application, and deliver a promising interview. All of these are processes of interrogation, where I go back into myself, drag through my experiences, my opinions and my knowledge to piece together a version of myself I want to sell.

Who knew job hunting was such an art form?

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As a writer I have tried always to remain as disciplined as I can; I know the act of writing itself is the crucible for creative process. But I am also more prone now to taking longer breaks without feeling the pressure.

I want to be present in my life, and live not forgetting the tiny stream of sand in that hourglass, constant and steady.

I want to see much, hear much, do much, try much, and put my fingers into as many different things as I possibly can, while learning my own strength, and earning my own way. I am experiencing, experimenting, challenging, creating, reaching, expanding in many different ways.

I have been savouring the emotions in my days as they come, the frustration, the anger, the helplessness, the futility, the grief, the joy, the excitement, the disappointment, the breathlessness, the restlessness, the determination and on my tongue they are tender, tender things.

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Now and then I put some of these thoughts down in black and white. Text on a screen. Letters on paper. Doodles in a spiral. But the residual remains and blooms in the space I breathe in and walk through – this space I call my life.

I hope it reads as well as my writing.

I hope it reads where my writing fails.

I hope it keeps my writing well.

I hope it writes more than I will ever read.

White Long Tee: Garage
Black Knit: Forever 21
Grey Knee-High Boots: Call It Spring

*artwork is from a stairwell installation by Alicia Nauta called, “Am I in my own house at all Mister?”

Posted by:jasmine

Jasmine is an editor, poet, and community arts organizer. She comes to poetry by way of Chinese music. This blog is a mapping of ways.

3 replies on “OOTD: In Black and White

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