PROMPT: Chocolate

Daily writing prompt
Describe your dream chocolate bar.

Tastes like chocolate, but with the caloric density of broccoli.

[And because someone might insist on trying to make such a monstrosity in reality, I must add a third criterion: should NOT result in me shitting my pants. (There are no free rides in life.)]

PROMPT: Childhood Book

Daily writing prompt
Do you remember your favorite book from childhood?

I remember an adaptation or condensed version of Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe. The castaway theme probably resonated with my introverted nature.

Fluid [Free Verse]

bulging undulation 
 of water,

the rolling topsides
  of wave bumps
 catch a blazing
  white shimmer

every square meter
 is in unending flux,
  shifting & rolling,
  growing & shrinking

the wake of a ferry
 causes wave to roll
  into wave at odd angles,
  sending the ripples
  into a cross-hatched 
  madness of bobbing water

i watch for hours and the
 same sea never repeats

BOOK REVIEW: Mindfulness in Wild Swimming by Tessa Wardley

Mindfulness in Wild Swimming: Meditations on Nature & Flow (Mindfulness series)Mindfulness in Wild Swimming: Meditations on Nature & Flow by Tessa Wardley
My rating: 4 of 5 stars Page

Release Date: June 13, 2023

As the title suggests, this is a book about combining mindfulness and swimming in natural bodies of water. It’s part of a large series of “Mindfulness and …” books, and this particular volume is a re-release of a title that came out a couple years back.

While the book does provide an overview the basic methods and considerations for both mindfulness meditation and wild swimming, it’s largely a peptalk or enticement to take up wild swimming as a means to improve awareness (as well as to bolster physical health and mental well-being.) That said, some of this peptalk is artfully, almost poetically, written, and the book is a pleasure to read.

The book discusses solo swims versus those in a group, and it even explores using onshore experiences to bolster mindfulness — e.g. using the sensory experience of the water as a focal point for practicing awareness. The around- (v. in-) water discussions are probably in part because the book uses seasons as a secondary mode of organization, and long and leisurely winter swims in lakes and rivers aren’t an option for people in many parts of the world.

I picked up some interesting food-for-thought in the book, and — as I say — it made for enjoyable reading.

View all my reviews

The Cough [Free Verse]

Remember the days
     when you dreaded
     a scratch at the back
     of your throat --

harbinger of a cough
     that you thought
     would get you rushed off
     to quarantine.

Or, at least, get a footlong swab
    shoved through your nasal cavity.

Best case, it would put all eyes upon you, 
     as the public wondered whether 
     you were their Typhoid Mary --
     (Except Mary was asymptomatic,
       and - clearly - you were not.)

We all learned that the one cough
      that one can never suppress
      is the one that you desperately
      wish to. 

That cough won't be silenced.