Hopes, Memories, and a little Creativity…

Michigan State Capitol Building, by Chris Galford

No Present

Caught himself along the past–

years passed before he ever realized

No Present.

So many are consumed by the past, and what has gone before, they forget to live in the present. As 2011 looms, I hope you reflect, but I also hope you take the time to look around you and enjoy a touch of the now.

Happy New Year’s Eve everyone!

Image care of Demotivational Posters.

I’d like to thank you all for all the support you’ve shown as readers, and peers…fellow writers and photographers all. That you’ve shared your works and encouraged and supported me in the sharing of my own has been a joy without end. I wasn’t sure how well the whole “young writer hitting the Big Bad Web” angle would go for me…you seem to see everyone everywhere trying it these days, and it certainly seems daunting to try and wade into such a hefty mass–amateurs, experts, and all manner of unseen forces lurking in the background, with the looming horror of plagiarism and creative theft.

And yet, things have gone better than I ever could have imagined. When I first started the Waking Den, I never would have dreamed there was such a vibrant and accepting community out there, just waiting to nurture and support fellow creative types. It has been an honor, yes, an honor, to read your comments on my own work, and to see and to read and pick through yours. There is a lot of talent out there, and it’s always a pleasure to discover new gems.

The One Shot Wednesday Mike

Another thing I never could have anticipated this year: One Stop Poetry. When I first started posting my poetry, and my photography, I thought I would be lucky if anyone swung through. I would have been happy with a couple comments here and there, be they critiques or praise. Yet then Leslie Moon came along, and through her I met the other wonderful founders of One Stop: Adam Dustus, Brian Miller and Pete Marshall. To be a part of that community, of such an up-and-coming site for creativity, was a joy among joys. Suddenly all those fellow poets were in one places, and they were sharing, and reading, and writing…it was the promised land.

When Leslie asked me on-board as a fellow manager, I was not only stunned, but ecstatic. Never in a million years could I have predicted that – and I couldn’t have asked for more. Since then I’ve gotten to work with Gay Cannon and Claudia Schoenfeld as well, two more managers added to the One Stop family. Between them and the founders, it’s a team without equal – and the experience has been both a blessing and a treasure. I get to interview photographers about their passion, see into the minds behind an art that has always fascinated and intrigued me. I get to share something I genuinely enjoy with the world-at-large.

And one can’t put a price on that.

Pure Michigan, by Chris Galford

Joy? I have a lot of it from this year. 2010 was a great year. I graduated, and not only that, I did so while acing every class. I had a great internship with the Lansing City Pulse that showed me first-hand how a real news organization works, and gave me an

See that guy in the fancy hat? That's me. Post-graduation with my father.

opportunity to flex my knowledge of the arts, as well as my photographic eye. I’ve climbed mountains, wandered beaches. I finished my first novel in a trilogy, “The Hollow March,” edited it, and gotten quality reviews back from its first readers. I’ve met new friends, joined a community of fellow writers, established a writer’s group in my own town, and have set about the ground work for hunting down publishers for short stories, poems and that fancy novel of mine. I’ve applied to law school, gotten my letters of recommendation, and now…I’m ready to hit the ground running.

If 2010 was a great year, I plan on making 2011 an amazing year. I hope you all will continue to support me as I do so – I couldn’t have come so far without all your kind words, your critiques, the inspiration of your presence.

And I hope above all that you all will have a wonderful year ahead as well. Here’s to the old year, and to the new – Cheers to all of you!

 

"Foggy Notions of Photography," by Chris Galford

Plastic Wreaths

Standing among the plastic wreaths he

searches desperately for life denied

but the rows stretch on into

foreboding; the synthetic

green grows into a maze,

amazing, and he sees the

clerk smiling at him–

no consolation in

the shrubbery

creeping to

Imperfection.

Funeral for Reason

Reason

never had its

season in the papers,

but its obituary was

adored.

* My latest contribution to the wonderful One Shot Poetry Wednesdays! The style used here is known as Cinquain, a five-line stanza form containing twenty-two syllables, in the sequence: 2, 4, 6, 8, 2. The form was invented by Adelaide Crapsey (1878-1914), an American poetess. Once you’ve had a look, check out some of the other One Shot Poets as well– they’re a skilled bunch of poets, looking to form a community and support one another.  Enjoy!

Give Thanks!

This week’s Quotes are in honor of the Thanksgiving holiday! For all my fellow Americans out there – I hope the week, and these season, treat you well, especially on whatever travels you may be shortly undertaking.

As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.  ~John Fitzgerald Kennedy

Let us remember that, as much has been given us, much will be expected from us, and that true homage comes from the heart as well as from the lips, and shows itself in deeds.  ~Theodore Roosevelt

For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food, for love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.
~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Of Spring

In honor of the now fully arrived Spring here in Michigan (70s in April? This is a miracle for us), a poem about this beautiful season. I can only hope everyone around me is enjoying the day as well, given all the booze that’s already starting to flow. Final Four Championship today–this place shall be a madhouse. Nevertheless, I give my obligatory shout-out to my fellow Spartans: Go Green!

Anyhow, this poem was composed back in High School, during one of my major poetry bouts:

Spring

Look now the snow is fading,

The grape vines now are creeping

And the frogs once more are leaping.

Flowers reach out for the light-

They had put up quite a fight,

Surviving all the winter fright!

Watch the little children playing-

Lovers on the green grass laying

Death’s dark power now decaying.

The sun’s bright light is beaming,

And the choirs take up singing,

As the Poets start their dreaming-

Dreaming of the days long past-

Spring is here at last!