Monday, February 8, 2010

Endure. Then Celebrate.

A year ago my heart and life were broken into pieces, and I wasn't sure life was worth living. Pema Chodron, my amazing therapist, my friends and family, literature, art and music helped me move to a new level of appreciation of life.

How can it be that now I'm full of joie de vivre? How can it be that I love to dance around alone or with friends in my apartment? How can it be that I'm open to new love? And to travelling, and cooking, and hiking and running, and the life of sensual pleasures? I enjoy being alone, and I enjoy being with my new love. I'm challenged by, and appreciating, my new classes. I can see my students have whole worlds they swirl in, worlds that can teach me as much as I can teach them.

Perhaps it takes coming close to death to love life at a new level?

Of course, there's wisdom of friends that always strikes to the depths. Here's an example. My friend Mike wrote this poem after I told him about my new relationship:

For Kathleen

I hate to say I told you so.
But I will. Because I did.
Of course, you know I'm lying
I love to say I told you so.

Go work your wiles on them
Said I. Snap your fingers and
Strike them blind if you don't
Like them. Fuck them if you do.

While you're whirling around
You'll bump into one that closes
Your eyes and opens your soul.
That's your man. I told you so.


I'm in love with the possibilities of life. I feel that there's barely enough time to do all I want to do. And at the same time, I remind myself to stop and appreciate the moment. The moment, after all, is all we really have. Perhaps this is aging, an accumulation of wisdom. Don't get me wrong. I don't have it all figured out. It's just that I can experience the richness, and ambiguities, and complexities of life in a way that I didn't in my teens, twenties and thirties. In a way that I didn't pre-divorce.

Probably in a related vein, creativity has been infusing my life lately--a strange attractor, to be sure. It's as though my new life energy is a magnet for all kinds of exciting creative acts. Here are some of the things on tap:

Feb. 27 (Saturday), 3 p.m, Fremont Area Writers talk at Mountain Mike's Pizza, 35760 Fremont Blvd, Fremont, CA.

March 11 (Thursday), 4 p.m in the MLK Library, I'm doing a joint reading with Cecilia Woloch. I'll be talking about the function of poetry in my new novel, Complementary Colors.

March 27 (Saturday), 9 a.m. at the Quilts & Textiles Museum in San Jose, I'm giving a 3-hour workshop for SWAN Day:
"Nothing happens, and nothing happens, and then everything happens." -- Fay Weldon
A lot of life feels like we are traveling on a familiar road. Then, suddenly, by choice or not, we face a crossroads: a place where multiple, unfamiliar roads converge. We all have periods in our lives that we can identify in the moment, or in retrospect, as "at the crossroads." These times can be painful, exhilarating, or both. No matter the feelings stirred up, being at the crossroads is a rich time. A time of possibility. Of transformation. In this workshop, we will engage with, capture, illuminate and explore life's transformations through writing. We will also probe intersections among poetry, prose and visual art: creativity's crossroads. In this vein, we will engage with the exhibition of poetry and quilt art of acclaimed artist Joan Schultz. Participants will be provided with opportunities to share their writing and discoveries.

April 7 (Wednesday) at 7 p.m., I'm doing a reading from my new novel, Complementary Colors, at the MLK library at 7 p.m.

April 10 (Saturday) at 1 p.m., I'm doing a poetry reading with a number of other San Jose poets at the San Jose Museum of Art. The reading is based on poetry written by various Bay Area poets in response to one of the museum's exhibits. We were all invited into this project by Nils Peterson, our county's poet laureate.


Life is not to be given up on. Sometimes it's to be endured until we can celebrate it.

46 comments:

Satia said...

Welcome home. :)

KATE EVANS said...

Satia: Email me: kattacruz1234 at yahoo dot com. I have a question for you. K:)

Jo A. T.B. said...

Wisdom is everything loved the poem, expressed what I feel too! The right one that is! May you find happiness!

Anonymous said...
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jin said...

So happy for you, Kate.

Holli said...

I completely agree with this Kate....
"Life is not to be given up on. Sometimes it's to be endured until we can celebrate it."

and I'm so happy you're happy!!

日系娃娃 said...
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Jim Berg said...

Divorce is freeing, yes. Still living Gay and Single and Happy.

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

Kathleen, I have some of those same problems like my life is not worth living anymore mainly because I have major depression, generalized anxiety disorder, and autism. A good thing you snapped out of those blues, but for me I sometimes can't get out of the blues mainly of my autism, depression, anxiety, and bad impulses. Hang in there!

Jared Alexander

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Anonymous said...

與人相處不妨多用眼睛說話,多用嘴巴思考,...............................................................

Anonymous said...

i consder your artical is so nice!........................................

阿楊 said...

「不可能」這個字詞,在聰明人的字典中是找不到的。.............................................

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

健康的身體是事業成功的基礎。 ............................................................

茂長修鴻 said...

多謝美味的心靈雞湯............................................

展姍展姍 said...

感謝分享--每天都要快樂喔................................

Anonymous said...

旁觀自己的悲傷是解脫,主觀自己的悲傷是更加悲傷 ..................................................

Anonymous said...

金銀愈加磨鍊,愈加光亮,人生愈加考驗,生命愈加光輝。......................................................

怡婷 said...

Many a little makes a mickle...................................................................

雲亨 said...

Happy New Year~..................................................

Anonymous said...

Man proposes, God disposes................................................................

Anonymous said...

You are flattering me..............................................................

淑惠 said...

來給你加油打氣!!!保重!!! .................................................................

Anonymous said...

HELLO~幫你推個文^^......................................................................

Anonymous said...

良言一句三冬暖,惡語傷人六月寒。.................................................................

Anonymous said...

Quality is better than quantity.................................................................

毅筠毅筠 said...

幸福不是一切,人還有責任。.................................................................

Anonymous said...

與人相處不妨多用眼睛說話,多用嘴巴思考.................................................................

LeatriceNay婉勇 said...

人生是故事的創造與遺忘。............................................................

Anonymous said...

卡爾.桑得柏:「除非先有夢,否則一切皆不成。」共勉!............................................................

Anonymous said...

這麼優的部落格,不踩一下不開心..................................................

Anonymous said...

成功多屬於那些很快做出決定,卻又不輕易變更的人。而失敗也經常屬於那些很難做出決定,卻又經常變更的人.................................................................

Anonymous said...

Poverty is stranger to industry.............................................................

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Anonymous said...

文章是心情的反應~~祝妳天天寫的都是讓人開心的好文章哦!!............................................................

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admin said...
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