Wednesday, January 18, 2012

A Week For the Record Books

What a week, and it's only Wednesday!  Oh boy, what's hiding in the next couple of days, I wonder!?  As some of you are aware, this has been the year of my undoing...out of work, and job after job has declined to want me. I have felt old and female and fat, far more than at any other time in my life. Monday I had yet another torturous interview, complete with an example of my interaction with the students, consisting of 16 clever Jr. High girls in a treatment center.  They were, not so much. I traveled about 120 miles and then back again to feel like a failure! The staff interview wasn't too bad...great people, but I haven't been in a classroom for going on 1 1/2 years and it was tough.
I sent a note to the fellow who arranged for the interview, expressing my thanks for the opportunity and then hunkered down to wait.  Yesterday, after fighting down nerves all day, I got an email telling me the job would not be extended to me at this time.I crumbled, complete with denial, self- reviling, and hostile thoughts of  running away.  Sometimes things just feel too hard to take for even one minute more!  Then, this morning I got a call from the same fellow, asking me if I'd be willing to accept a position teaching English at their sister school, which is a private all-girls high school residential treatment center, with just 12 students. I almost dropped the phone! I HAVE A JOB!
It didn't seem real for awhile.  I'm going tomorrow to meet the personnel at the center and get the scoop on what's up there. Things are going to get complicated for awhile now, because I have a senior who needs to stay here until graduation in June.  I don't know if I can swing two rent payments, but it's got to be better than $25 to $30 in gas every bloomin' day, to say nothing of the hours traveling.  Chris is mature enough for me to leave him home alone four nights out of seven each week, but....sheesh!  Is there never an easy answer to life's riddles?!! One day at a time for now, I suppose.
So anyway...the mood swings have been spectacular, and I'm on a high at the moment.  Chris is at a ball game and I definitely need to celebrate a little.  I have in mind to show off a bit by posting two of my pieces that have won honors and awards.  Hope you don't mind, but my brain is sizzling and needs validation and re-assurance that I CAN DO THIS!

The first one, Vortex, was published in UVU's literary magazine in 2006. It seems fitting for tonight because it makes reference to angels watching us as we spin through our lives down here below.My mind has been on Robyn today and I feel certain she has had a hand in this amazing turn of events, which will impact my life in ways yet to be seen.

The second addresses my hopeless, too-tired-for-words mood of yesterday, but I'm including it here because it took honors and was published in UVU's literary magazine in 2007.  It was selected as the 1st place poem of the year, and I was asked to read it at the award ceremony.  I was very honored and proud to share it with my esteemed peers. It's titled Everlasting, and reflects on feelings of despair and an overwhelming desire for surcease from life's harsh lessons.

And so:


Spin 'round,'round,'round and fall
all giddy-dizzy down.
Hold fast to long slow grass
to keep from slipping off the edge.

Lay back and watch
the twirling whirligig,
pothered wild
sky and cirrus, weird
birds with circling wings,
silver, streaky jets
whose fisted fumes are cracking open
Heaven's floor, enticing angels
to explore beyond
cyclone skies.

Lay back and watch
while Earth and Heaven catch,
collide to stillness.
Earth is turning, turning, turning.
Who is it then,
that lies back looking
as we spin?

Susan Nielson


When death flies overhead
like a bird, when it
circles, sees, leaves
with wings tapered, pointing up,
then forever is a long way down
a slow road.

Ruts have been cut
in the path with pressing
wheels, blundering
along the same weary trail,
no chance for a shift,
always adrift  with the dust,
wind, whatever comes.

The same fixed sun
moves like a drum,
slogging along a hollow,
stuck in it's course,
counting the same stars
over and over.

It would be fine to stop,
not start again,
no sun coming up, going down,
around and around.
Just rest...stillness,
blessed, beyond reach,

while wheels thunder over,
above.  And you,
in your last rut, 
know none of it.

That would be Heaven enough.

Susan Nielson

1 comment:

  1. Those are amazing! I could hear your voice reading them to me as I savored the words. I am so excited for your new adventure. I am here when and if you need me.
    Your heavenly sister and friend forever,