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My Blogiversary post for 2021

It was 23 July 2012 when I published my first blog post on Sue’s Considered Trifles. I have not added any new material to that blog for some time, but it could be useful to writers wishing to know which phrases were in use in the second half of the 20th century.

Tomorrow will be 23 July 2021, so that marks 9 years of more-or-less regular blogging. Sue’s Trifles, which has become my main blog, is a bit younger having its first post on 25 March 2013. I chose the theme Pachyderm for reasons I explained here. It is perhaps a little twee. Should I change it?

At first my posts were written in response to daily prompts from WordPress, but these were discontinued. Since 2013 I have taken part in the Blogging from A to Z in April Challenge every year and in 2016 I also completed the challenge on Sue’s words and pictures, which I began in March 2015. My first post is here.

My What’s new page lists all my writing adventures, if adventures is not too exciting a word for my exploits!

Nine years is a long time and my off-line interests have changed gradually as time has gone on. My favourite games are now Rummikub and Triominoes, with Scrabble and Upwords demoted to occasional use. Even before the pandemic I had stopped going to the craft group, the reading group and an embroidery group, which may all have been mentioned here on Sue’s Trifles.

I am far more involved with social media now than I ever imagined would be the case. When I began blogging, I was unaware that it was social media and that I’d make online friends among people in various countries, who also blog.

My first reviews of books I read appeared on Sue’s Considered Trifles as a page or pages. Gradually book reviews have become the major part of my blogging activities. If you had told my 10-year-old self that this would be the case, she would have been incredulous. Having to write a review of every book read and to queue up to show the review to the teacher before being allowed to choose another book, led me to choose the thickest book on the shelf in the classroom! (Writing and queuing stole valuable reading time.)

I try to include occasional craft posts and faith posts, or reflective posts such as this one for those readers, who perhaps followed Sue’s Trifles after reading posts in those categories. I am currently rereading the psalms, attempting to keep up with another blogger, who tweets every day. A few years ago I joined in with his #psalmtweets.

Lockdown has affected both Sue’s Trifles, where Paint Chip Poems have become a regular feature, and Sue’s words and pictures, where photo challenges have provided a source of inspiration rather than outings to places of interest. At the time of writing a few posts of local interest are in the pipeline and one has been published already.

As restrictions are lifted in the UK, I am spending more time outside the home – if only in the garden! In fact gardening is seasonal. I have returned to my voluntary job and am attending some church services, but not singing in the choir.

Although I carried out my garden survey this year at the end of March, I have not yet found time to compare the results with those for previous years.

My word for the year, Focus, has proved helpful as I seem to be able to work more efficiently than at some times in the past. There are always distractions like other people’s blogs to read, conversations to join in with on social media and podcasts and videos by blogging/writing friends.

My quiet times continue to include the Bible reading notes I mentioned here.

I also try to keep my contents and other lists up-to-date, although they seem to be of more use to me than to my valued readers.

What about the future of my blogs? Book reviews and paint chip poetry are likely to make up the majority of my posts on Sue’s Trifles. The photo challenge posts on Sue’s words and pictures are likely to continue on Wednesdays with posts on some Saturdays about places visited or events, such as a steam train passing along the local railway line.

Thank you for reading my 959th post on Sues Trifles!

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Narrative poem with paint chips

Linda Kruschke’s challenge this week is for a Narrative poem. Do visit her blog for more detail including the colours and her poem. She writes:

‘Your challenge is to write a narrative poem, to tell a story. It can be true, completely fictional, or a combination thereof. The format is up to you. Couplets, free verse, rhyming or not.

‘The paint chip words and phrases you have to work with are antique rosesurf’s upmistletoemustard seedskyscrapereasy peasy, and jack-o’-lantern.

‘I would like you to use at least four of these paint chips in your poem.

‘For an extra twist, perhaps incorporate one or two of the colors themselves, using whatever name you would ascribe to them.’


Fashion statements

Getting the length of a miniskirt
Correct used to be easy-peasy.
Kneel on the floor, not in the dirt –
That most certainly would not have pleased me.

A mini-dress in brighter yellow
Shades than mustard seed had been measured
The same way. Then a young fellow
Made a comment – a memory not treasured.

What amateur dressmakers had not
Taken into account was, movement
Lifts up a dress’s hem a lot!
I guess there’s always room for improvement.

Four inches above the knee was right
For a skirt. Lime green and navy
Went well together. Colours bright
As Jack-o-lantern orange adorned me.

Even middle-aged men wore coloured shirts.
Dad had a smart shirt of dusky pink.
(They didn’t do it to be flirts.)
With elephant-grey trousers – made us blink.

Psychedelic patterns in bright hues,
Like antique rose and mistletoe green
Chosen for handbags and summer shoes.
In the Sixties people wanted to be seen!

Hems have since been lower, necklines too.
Colours make a splash, bright red the best.
Fashions change, shapes return, sleeves do too,
But are they eco-friendly? That’s the test.

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Kyrielle: paint chip poem

This week Linda Kruschke’s Paint chip challenge is for a Kyrielle. The word reminded me of Kyrie as in Kyrie eleison. In fact, according to the book I mentioned in my previous paint chip post, it is short for Kyrie eleison and was originally used for hymns. I had three goes at this and have combined the second and third attempts, but it still might qualify for last week’s prompt – Juxtaposition.

Linda writes:

Your challenge this week is to write a kyrielle of at least three stanzas. 

The paint chip words and phrases you have to work with are it takes two to tangoblack widowNiagara Fallsdragonflywarm gloworange you glad, and tissue. I would like you to use at least three of these words or phrases, including one as part of your repeating refrain.

Reflections above a small waterfall

Local waterfall

Dancing rainbow colours

By a path raised over a marsh
In pairs filmy dragonfly play.
The countryside code is not harsh.
It takes two to tango, they say.

The wings of a bright dragonfly
Have colours like waterfall spray.
A rainbow spectrum flying high.
It takes two to tango, they say.

Waterfalls in our neighbourhood
Might cascade a very long way,
But Niagara Falls surely would.
It takes two to tango, they say.

The waterfalls here are smaller.
Rain boosts them on a stormy day.
Niagara Falls stands much taller.
It takes two to tango, they say.

When the warm glow of spring sunshine
Breaks through after long winter’s grey
Everyone begins to feel fine.
It takes two to tango, they say.