the untold history

‘the untold history, poignant and true’

i am a story is on Facebook HERE:

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New project – ‘I Am A Story’

I wrote i am a story as one long poem, an unbroken narration of what makes up life, the colours it reveals and the many wonders it brings. It’s a poem of distilled observations with pure offerings of solace and raw intentions of love.

Each of us has a wonderful story—that tale, the yarn that is waiting to be told in more ways than one—about how the clouds in the sky seem to form shapes that gallop or swing or dance, how the flower on the ground seems to wink as it blooms bright under the sun, or how that boy you see every day on the train finally offers you a toothy smile. It’s not just for kids and the young ones, but also for the keenly aware and the young at heart.

i am a story is about those moments, each one carrying a promise of the day and warm comfort in the cold night.

i am a story is yours and mine, a heartfelt invitation to tell your own tale.

EVERY WEEK, A POST EXTRACT OF i am a story WILL APPEAR ON THIS BLOG. Click the page link on the menu above and please share around!

It’s now also on Facebook HERE!

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GRATEFUL FOR ‘IN GRATITUDE TO PEGASUS’ by Tim Marshall (Compiled by Ruth Marshall) (or ‘Don’t read my book; read THIS one by Tim Marshall’)

Where I am right now, the weather is kind of freaky, with summer storms delivering a deluge of a month’s worth of rain, hail and gusty winds all in one day, with odd temperatures leading to questionable wardrobe choices. In moments like this, I tend to turn my thoughts towards nature and what mystical forces drive its behaviour. These storms, both predicted and unexpected in the height of the Australian summer, create in me ripples of longing for a deeper understanding of the truth about the universe. As I engage in that shameless reflection, my tendency is to pick up a book and savour words and thoughtful passages that it contains.

THIS IS ONE THOSE MOMENTS …

When I decided to finally finish reading the book by the late Tim Marshall (1972-2012), I was not prepared for whatever storms it may create within me. In the end, I could only feel grateful for having read ‘In Gratitude to Pegasus’.

in gratitude to pegasus book

Tim Marshall’s final (and only) collection of creative musings is filled with hope, epiphanies, meditation and spirituality. His introspection on nature (both internal and external), the epiphanies and breakthroughs of ‘self’ and the ‘other’ (which in these musings could only inhabit the elements of nature—the weather, birds, fruits, valleys, roads, mountains, seas, skin, faces) can astound the otherwise unconvinced reader. It is reminiscent of the desires and longings evident in some of the writings of Robert Frost and John Keats, with the underlying themes of searching for truth, beauty and peace beyond mortality, fate and tragedy.

The book reveals the angst of the writer in Marshall in his engagement with the Muse (‘Golden Thought’, ‘Writing’); it propounds on the melancholy of searching for Self (‘The Forgotten King’, ‘Waiting for the Mystical’), on the virtue of homage (‘Mum’), on the raw experience of a bright, weathered day (‘Blue Autumn Day’: ‘there is no thought / no judgement / red berries are glowing / in this blue autumn day’); it precludes one from doubting the value of self love (‘Your No-Face’), effectively infusing the thought process with the all-encompassing acceptance of one’s fate and the gratitude for the capacity to express the desire of being with one’s spiritual (or mystical) kin (‘In Gratitude to Pegasus’).

Marshall’s poetic musings provide deep insight that tends to deliver us from the ‘modern’ human instinct of ignoring the basic but glorious elements of nature. In that sense, the meditations provide us with the raw but powerful desire of living our lives as being one with the universe and on the simplest terms that one could muster amid the noise and chaos of modern life. It lights the way towards a path of self-discovery that never wavers in the storm of personal tragedy and disillusionment brought on by fate or consequence.

Proof of Marshall’s prolific tendencies in his short but eventful life, the book is prefaced by early information about his creative endeavours and spiritual excursions. And like a kid jumping for joy at the prospect of more treasure, I was delighted to find at the end of the book the poems that Marshall had written for his filmmaker friend, John Moran (‘Tapestry’, ‘Safety’, ‘Silence’), all extoling the virtues of meditating on quiet mindfulness and living. It was like finding the bonus track to an already-great track listing.

tim marshall

AND SO NOW …

As the rain and wind outside lash at my windowpane, I find myself thinking of Marshall’s devotion to his quest for the final truth, something that someone in his position could only have embraced more profoundly. I find myself wanting to tell everyone not to read my own previous book, but to absorb instead Marshall’s book for all its values and virtues for living a meaningful life. I find myself wishing Marshall well (paying him gratitude) as he rides above the sky, beyond the deep earth, through the bright stars and into the vast universe, perched on the back of Pegasus, wherever the divine wind takes him.

Like any other creative legacy, ‘In Gratitude to Pegasus’ pays homage to that often-misunderstood (and overlooked) tendency to be in spirit with the Divine—whether in the literal sense or in a more profound awareness that most writers possess—which in more ways than one inform any creative process. Marshall’s tome is a tribute to that lasting creative legacy, something that readers would hold close to their hearts, particularly on oddly described days of storm and wonder.

‘The Heaving Pavement’ is coming

My second book to be released this year is The Heaving Pavement (Epistles on an anxious life) (released worldwide on 1 December 2015) and the first batch of author copies have just arrived! The Heaving Pavement is an experimental memoir on anxiety in poetic, verse, prose and illustrated forms. I hope it brings some clarity to the issue of how anxiety impacts our everyday lives.

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Some very old stuff from the very old vault

Some very old stuff from the very old vault

THIS POST IS SOOOO LEFT-OF-CENTRE. Been feeling angsty lately and haven’t been posting that much. I was rummaging through some very old files and found one of my very old doodles for a character I was building on (and I was in my late teens, I think), based mainly on what I was feeling. I think I started the doodles back in the mid-80s. This is one of them, in all its pencilled glory: BARNEY BARNES, the main kid character in a series of three books of cartoon strips. I pretty much felt I WAS Barney Barnes.