My arms knew music,
the feel of a violin
my fingers knew the places
where the notes sang well

My arms have forgotten
the weight of a violin
but know well the comforting feel
of a baby in their cradle

My fingers have forgotten
the melodies they played
but they  have been quite adept
at eliciting childish giggles

Maybe one day
when the baby becomes a man
my hands will remember
the curves of a violin again.
A disclaimer: Implications of the poem above notwithstanding, I have never been a (good) violin player. At best, I was an intermediate learner. 🙂


The piece was a response to PAD 20 Challenge which was to write about a memory or something like that.

MY VOICE IS A BROKEN VIOLIN (for WPC: Express Yourself)

Violin and music
Please hover over the photos to remove the misty effect. 🙂 Thanks for coming by.


My voice is a broken violin
that is playing out of tune
its discordant chords echo
within the bounds of an empty room.

Often I dreamed I have the power
to put the notes in my command
make the world weep or exalt
with the music from my hands.

Alas! my wish is but a wish
the gift is not to me bestowed
yet even then, when I play
serenity and joy I find.


For:  WPC:  Express Yourself

ENNUI (for DVerse Poets)

Violin and roses3

Dirge flowed from her violin
dark clouds pooled in her heart
some mean spirit stole her metronome
she only hears her body’s clock

sounding the call of her passing dreams –
the Love that will complete her heart
a babe cradled in her arms
for whom she’ll sacrifice her art.

Oh how she wished to escape the music
that had sheltered her all her life
She was the prodigious child
casting a spell with her bow’s lightest  touch.

Now, her bow wearied the strings
that she thought  held her bound
her fingers fell like lead
pounding on her prison bars

Her eyes looked past the score
searching the captive crowd
for that one distinct face
to lift her from  Ennui’s shroud

only to find that love is like a needle
lost in a haystack
what becomes of the violinist
while the woman finds her heart?


Claudia’s Poetics prompt at DVerse Poets’ Pub is about telling a story.  To this end, she asked us to include some of the words that she gave in our work.  Please drop by the pub to see the exotic words that Claudia listed. 🙂 I chose – violinist, metronome, and a needle in a haystack because I like the violin and its music, and because there are violinists who have made a difference in my life. 🙂

As usual, I am catching the tailend of the prompt.  We spent the day in the big city.  We are spending a two week break in the rural areas of Maine.  The trip to Bangor takes an hour (and that is short by Maine standards).  As such,  the trip  is always a big production and one that should be maximized.  It is my way of apologizing to you, dear folks, if I am not able to see your posts today or tonight.  I do try to catch up best I can.  However, I seem to have surrendered as far as replying to comments on my posts is concerned.  I am sorry about that.  I generally prioritize visiting and commenting on your blogs.

Thank you for coming by. 🙂  God bless you.


Violin and roses black and white
Oh, those hours I spent
taming the wild strings
of the violin

the horsehair I caressed
and coaxed
to produce the sweetest melody
that haunted my dreams

yes, those times
when my soul floated
with the tearful notes
of my fiddling

music absorbing
my being
rising to the heavens
as of angels

voice of a father

Those days
with my violin
and dreams
I remember so well

Come again.


dVERSE POets’ Poetics wants  us to ‘try to remember’  when we write our post for this weekend’s prompt.   There are so many things that one of a certain age (and even not of a certain age) can remember. 🙂 However, yesterday, I took some photographs of my old violin.  Tonight, while still replying to some blog comments about my violin playing (or, more accurately, lack thereof), I knew what memory I would write about.  The above photo is part of the batch that I took yesterday.  The colored version was posted in a previous post.

Thank you for coming by.  🙂 Have a great week,


Today, I used my violin….. in a non-musical way. I used it to take pictures for Weekly Photo Challenge’s Unusual.  I brought the violin to the garden and let it rest among the mint and positioned it under low-lying roses.  I hoped to take advantage of the light from the late afternoon sun.   I was on my belly most of the time to get these angles.  At some point, our little dog Thunder climbed over me and licked me on the face.  Eww….

Violin and roses1

The idea is not an original one.  I got it from a picture that Flower Story posted in its picture wall.  I am posting here some of the better results from my experiment.  They do not come close to the excellence of the inspiration.  For one, I think that the flower-themed photos have a little too much grain and I don’t know why.  However, I think (my personal bias aside :-), that these photos have an atmosphere entirely their own.

Thank you for coming by. 🙂 Please visit the Weekly Challenge link above for more responses.  Happy weekend to all of you. 🙂


I have long stopped making new year’s resolutions because I’d forget about them soon after I made them. That I do not make any resolution, however, does not mean that I have no desire to make myself or my life better. It is best not to wait a year before one takes stock of one’s situation, personal or otherwise. A daily examination of conscience is best to check bad habits and nip any in the bud.

Yet, be that as it may, the new year is a specially good day to take stock of things – those that have been accomplished or neglected in the last year – and to set a direction.

Most of my hopes and dreams revolve around my being a mother and wife.   Therefore, all of my desire for self-improvement aim to serve my vocation as mother and wife. At least, I hope so. 🙂

For this post, I wish to focus on a couple of interests that I wish to continue and/or work on this year.   I don’t know how these  personal interests jive with the general direction that I mentioned earlier.  However,  if I go with my husband’s logic that  a satisfying hobby makes me a happier and  easier one to live with, these goals are well-within my life mission. 🙂

The first area that I wish to focus on is writing.   As you may well know by now, one of the reasons I blog is to learn and improve my writing skills.  I have always wanted to write poems and stories; I have wanted to record family stories, but I did not know how to.  After a year of blogging, I know that my work has improved and I am happy about that.  I will never be in any Bestseller list or have any writing prize (HA! HA! HA!), but I am glad to know that there are a few poems and stories  (quality or lack thereof notwithstanding)  in my archive. 🙂  This year, I wish to continue learning and improving and writing.  I will continue participating in writing link-ups even when my work sticks out like a sore thumb. 🙂

This is my draft for the poem “Life Music”.

Another area that I wish to work on is photography.   I like recording those fleeting moments of beauty.  I like to record beauty as I see it and share with you.   Based on my works over the past years, I am happy to note that I have improved in this area too.  Thanks to digital cameras.  I do not have to worry that I am taking too many pictures of the same subject in the hope that I can come up with one passable photo.   I am also very grateful to the photographers out there  who generously share their knowledge and photos and to you who tell me what work worked and why. 🙂   To  improve some more in this area, I wish to participate in as many photo challenge as is reasonable for me and to take more  pictures of anything and everything to see how photography elements work.   One day, I may even try to learn how to use photoshop, or gimp, maybe.


Then, there is the violin.  It always calls to me.  I like music, I like to play the violin.   But I have neglected learning and practicing.  I did not want to play because the noise would wake up the sleeping children.  I did not want to play because I need to be able to concentrate.  The children almost always interrupted my playing if I happened to play during the day.  They wanted to touch the bow or pluck the strings or what have you.

Violin Bridge

I should go back before my fingers get gnarled from housework and age. 🙂 It is starting to happen.  My left index finger looks slightly bent and twisted from all the dish washing that I have been doing all these years.  I knew I should have gotten that  insurance! 😉

Now that my youngest is no longer a baby, perhaps I can start playing for ten minutes or so at night once a week.   For that one night, I should will myself away from any blog-related thing until I am done with practicing.   I guess that’s workable.

Violin belly

And just to give myself something concrete to look forward to, I will focus on learning to play once again that piece of music that I have learned more than ten years ago.  My mind remembers the tune but my fingers could not produce the notes.  I’d be really happy if I could play  this reasonably and relatively well again.


Thank you Jake and DP Weekly Photo Challenge for making me think about goals and ‘compelling’ me to put them in writing. 🙂  Visit their pages for more responses. 🙂  Thank you for coming by.

Best regards,



I wish a were .. a violinist.

I have always loved music. In the rural area where I grew up, music was brought to us by transitor radios, and by our parents who sang lullabies and whatever songs they knew to us. I was amazed at the young men who played the guitar. They walked about our neighborhood carrying their guitar and strumming and singing on their way. I was fascinated by my sister’s banduria playing and by the schoolchildren passing in front of our house on their way to and from school carrying their bandurias. I was envious when a neighbor bought an upright piano – that was the first in our neighborhood – and enrolled a daughter to piano lessons. Alas! Piano lessons or any other music lessons were beyond our family’s means. I contented myself with listening to the radio, learning the songs I heard, and singing. Whether my family and neighbors liked what they heard or not, I sang anyway. I sang – while washing dishes, cooking before a fire, and doing all sorts of chores.
There was some sort of music lessons in school – which I remember most for the few times that my teacher was present in class – but I would not have any real music lessons until after I was a 29 year old lawyer looking for some ways to enrich my rather boring and stressful life. I had money then, too, to spend for lessons and a musical instrument. I enrolled in violin lessons and I bought a violin, a cheap one, but a cherished treasure nonetheless.
I went to my first lesson like a kid going to school for the first time. Finally, I could realize this vision of myself playing under a silvery moonlight the sweetest, most soulful and achingly beautiful violin music that wafted in the air and filled the hearts of anyone who heard with all sorts of emotions.
But, reality bites. I was mortified that there were others in the class, children as young as five years old toting their little violins. I tried so hard to be not conscious before the budding virtuosos. Their rendition of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and other beginner pieces were superior to mine. They also memorized the pieces faster than I ever could. (To this day, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and Bach’s Minuet No. 2, if I am not mistaken, are the only two pieces that I know, more or less, by heart.) They also kept time better than I did. Needless to say, my teacher – who was my age – got frustrated with me a number of times. Yet, somehow I learned and even did a recital or two with the five-year olds.
Being able to play the violin was a great accomplishment for me. For one, it showed my resilience against the banging neighbors’ windows whenever I start practicing at night. On a more serious note, even if I was not the talented musician I dreamed to be, I learned. I improved myself. When I was down, I could turn to the violin for some wholesome diversion.
When I migrated to the States, I brought along my cheap violin. I thought I would continue practicing and learning in my spare time. In the early years of my marriage, I did manage to play here and there. The coming of children, however, kept me almost completely away from the violin. There was  hardly any spare time for violin-playing and even if I had some, I’d rather do something quiet so that I would  not wake up sleeping children. As a consequence, not only had my progress at playing been stalled, but also, and worse, I played worse than before. My fingers have lost dexterity and I see middle age and manual work affecting my finger bones. Still, I hope to resume playing on a more or less regular basis. I even bought a new violin last year when the one I originally had got completely trashed. I know that I will never be a virtuoso,  may not even get past advanced beginner level, and will never get to play Meditation from Thais, but  I will still try to play the violin because I want to and playing the violin makes me happy.

I am joining the DP Challenge:  I wish I were….