in my basket, on the page, in my head

The first nap of the sailing season held my loves up in the v-bearth, while I closed the hatch and sat less than ten feet away.  I listened to their breaths, the slap of water and the trickle of rain on deck.  I was maybe ten rows from the end when I noticed.  I’d dropped a few stitches somewhere between our cat’s naughty escapade the night before and Olive’s accidental tangle in the circular needle.  All my night knitting in low light had me miss the long and vertical unravel of this lovely sunlight shawl for sad people.  I loved the pattern and of course the Twist and Twine skein from this post.  
It was bad.  With my sleeping family so close, I was forced to whisper-swear.  I panicked and made bad moves, whisper-freakin’ out the whole time.  The closer I looked, the more I noticed the imperfections of the shawl.  I unraveled and rewound my skein into a tight ball.  I took one deep and giant breath and then,
Mama, we’re awake.  Did you finish?
And so I explained that things don’t always turn out how we’ve expected them to be and if we ever feel like we didn’t do our best, it’s good to try again – especially with a project.
So, now I’m making the Oaklet Shawl and I love it.  
I was bitter for a bit, especially with all the grey and chilly air we’ve been having so my neck’s been cold and in need of a shawl.  ButI’m more careful, more present when I knit.  I’m so much happier with how this is knitting up, how I am with needles in my hands.  It’s as if it was meant to be.
I’m writing another play and I think my head just might explode.  
I dove into notebooks, loose papers and texts.  More than these arms can carry, actually.  I’m in research mode, with a mind in two acts.  There’s characters talking in my head while I’m swallowing facts.
When I write poetry, I let the words fall into place.  Sometimes, I have to wait days for a line to come.  It might end up being the wrong line, but the right one and the last line and even the title eventually surface.  For me, poetry spills into ink and it has always been that way for me.  Writing a play is a whole different process for me.  There’s weeks of research, weeks of conversations between characters and an end that plays out in my head before the first scene is written.  This process seems to fit the belief, you can’t get there unless you know where you’re going.
In many ways, I’m reading twelve books at once.  So many books for reference, for so many things really.  I just might have checked out my limit.  A page here, a chapter here:  mostly paragraphs here and there are useful for research.  Bits and pieces falling into the bookends that’ll support the play.  I guess you could say I’m writing historical fiction, but it’s really historical poetic narrative.
This afternoon, I read a letter where the gentlemen who penned it spoke of the early 90s. I paused, took a sip of triple, extra-frothy mocha and thought of flourescent clothing, denim on jean, and flannel shirts and long underwear under shorts.  But the letter was written in 1937, so the talk of the early 1890s was some kind of thing to wrap my mind around.  I’m back one hundred years, just where I was when I wrote the lighthouse play.  It’s good to be back.
What’s in your basket, on your needles, inside your heart?

joining Ginny for yarn along.


  • satakieli says:

    Your knitting sounds a little like how mine is for every project. I do try my best, but it never quite turns out how I'd like. I still like knitting though, regardless.

  • Living with button holes on the wrong side for the cardigan I am currently knitting – can't face the unravel so embracing the imperfection!

  • swanski says:

    I am so sad that your dropped a stitch. But the project you are knitting now is beautiful!! It must be so exciting to have some ideas that need to be put on paper-I hope your play spills out perfectly in your notebooks-happy writing!!

  • Tracey says:

    Remember, knitting is a process [athough I have been know to whisper swear a few times myself…you make me laugh.]
    I love that you are writing a play and hope I am sitting in the front row one day watching it on stage! I'll throw you a writers party..promise!

  • can i tell you how much i love that you're a process knitter? so many are product knitters but for me, it's the process, the losing of myself in stitches that slip from needle to needle, the occasional whisper from the needles.

    a play! a play! eek, so excited for you. i'll be cheering you on quietly from here (wouldn't want to disturb your writing with actual loud cheering).

  • When knitting goes wrong, it's frustrating but the great thing is that you can rip back and start again!

    I'm in the process of oh so many knitting projects!! I am knitting a pair of socks, 2 sock yarn blankets, and a shawl! Those are my active knits…not the ones that taught me from the FO bin. hehe! enjoyed your post! Thanks!

  • Just breath and keep on knitting.
    I am working on a Christmas Fairy for Friday. I hope to have it done by then so I can share the pattern.

    With All That I am
    Carie “The Handmade Homemaker”

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