Perseverance equals Progress!!

This afternoon felt like a dream come true.. As my friend gave me a proof (a fresh but not final copy) of my first chapbook, Through Autistic Eyes, so many emotions, so many words were going on inside my head, but one word stood out from the pack.

Vindication.

10 long years of waiting, wondering and yes worrying, but it’s all paid off in my first chapbook, Through Autistic Eyes. My eyes and I have been through so much, grown so much I’m so many different ways, but one thing still remained unfinished. I had been published before, inside Chronogram (multiple times) in newsletters, papers and even an Anthology (Riverine: An Anthology of Hudson Valley Writers for the curious.) Even with all that success, something still felt out of place, like there was something missing from my writing resume.

Well, now it’s finally come true in seeing my first chapbook, one that’s been 10 years in the making finally become a reality!! This is a clear cut lesson that patience and determination can pay off, that dreams can be realized if you work hard enough. Just think, if I could do it, if Jim Henson, Mark Goodson and Albert Einstein can make their respective dreams come true, ask yourself what’s stopping you for being able to…

Shine On!!

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Repost: Packed Out Poetry: 20 Years Strong (and Getting Stronger)

“We all matter because we live.”Those words were on my mind as I went to a local poetry reading in Woodstock this weekend. Then I heard fellow poets reminisce of days long ago and poets that are no longer with us, how the featured readers met the host and thus a community was born. It’s been one that, since the year 2000, that has been kind enough to let me, a Spectrumite finding his voice to thrive and learn in their presence. I’ve learned so much from the local poetic masters (or maybe divas perhaps?) that they made me want to be better than before.As for my approach to poetry, or the arts in general for that matter, I like to take a cue from the father of modern Philosophy, Socrates, and say that “All that I know is that I know nothing.” It’s been something that has stuck with me because of my translation.The way I interpret his words is to never close your mind on what is possible and be open to new and exciting possibilities. We all wear different hats at different times, the key is to always being open to what can happen. All artists are able to reinvent themselves constantly with the times that they find themselves, (Pro wrestlers Mick Foley, Triple H, The Rock, The Undertaker, singers Prince, Billy Joel and Sir Elton John as well as game show hosts Drew Carey and Pat Sajack are some such examples) but that also applies to everyone as well.I know a wonderful friend who does a lot for the community, Joe Defino Jr, who finds himself wearing many hats in his life but is always open to any possibilities. He has been in his life a teacher, lector, artist, coach, technician as well as a father and a mentor for me. He’s always reminding me to be open to God’s call even when it’s hard for me to do so. He’s just one example but my point is sometimes we need a reminder to be open.To highlight how different my poetry has been from when I started writing, I offer two examples of my poems. One comes from when I was just starting out writing in high school; I was writing about an one sided crush and how the wait was making me feel, appropriately named Waiting for my True Love:Waiting for my true LoveWhen I ask a girl out and she says no,I feel lower than the lowest lowWhen I get a moment, I look up at the skyAnd say, “Is this the way it’ll be till I die?” I try to be still, patient and calmThinking that I’m sitting under a tree of palmAnd I try to start a new dayIn a new way. When I see people kissing, however,I feel as gloomy as cloudy weatherBoys and girls I know flirtAnd I feel that my feelings are truly hurt.I’m waiting for you . . .I’m waiting for my true love. This relatively recent one is dedicated to a wonderful friend, whose Mom was strong, full of faith and kind as well. When I first recitied this poem for her children, they were so happy, one was crying because it was so powerful, so I leave this one here as well, to show how I’ve progressed as a poet: Gentle Pink -for the memory of Beverly Defino-  Gentle pinkwind calls out;tells all that can hearthe broken hearted;discouraged atheletea sick person:Even as enemies close in,times when hope seemsdistant,promise me one thing:That through it all,to never give up.My wishhelpsall in need,battling whatever comes,knowingheroic fightwith its ardiousdifficulttrials,all too well. Faith,lovemay seeminsignificantin world deluged in dismal news.Those small thingsdone out of love;kindnessmean so muchin the long run. Lovefrom all who love youinspires;radiates itselfto others;permeatingthroughout life’speaks and pratfalls. “Gentle wind,those who get the messagesay silentlyas if in prayer“We knowwords so heartfelthow much you care,even now,you inspire humble peoplewith yourfaithfulness;courageousness;precious jemthe giftswe celebrate;guardwe will never forgetnor the memory you leave in us.” My advice to those who feel that they are passionate about something, one where the Eros won’t go away no matter what, is to go after it, keep learning, and never give up, because you can always learn from being patient and your work,  each and every day, will always help you to….Shine On!!!

Packed Out Poetry: What is something that is needed but lacking?

Greetings from the Spectrum Side!!

I know that I’ve been long overdue for a post and I apologize so much for making you wait, but with my need for an attention for detail which could almost border on perfection, it’s hard for me to find the right thing to write about to the point where it feels like its ready to be shared.

That’s the thing about me that makes me feel (know, perhaps?) that I’m an artist at my heart and soul. The best always make things seem so easy, even when writing it seems so hard, but writing about it is the best way to find something great about yourself.  Most recently, the words that people describe are articulate, creative, kind, passionate and (by my own admission) emotional.

I’ve even have had the word “leader” thrown in several times, something that I’ve thought that I couldn’t be since leaders are painted with the stereotype of being cold and uncaring. Another thing that I fear of being a leader is that some leaders let power go right to thier heads, becoming tyrannical and manipluative by nature.

With that said, people have a habit of calling me patient as well, but there are times (especially in the past 2 years) where people have annoyed me to the point of me losing my patience with them, a folly that both thiers as well as mine. Recent events gave me time to pause about what patience means to me, what it means to be patient and how it can be a virtue or a vice.

That being said, I present the diamante I call, Patience:

Patience

By Brian Liston

Patience

Fortifies, strengthens

Creativity, self, courage

Abundant as it is, even it runs out

Together with rage, courage, passion

A Virtue or curse

All is on you.

Just a thought to close this post out on: Be patient; be kind to others since you may not know the battle the person you berate is going through. The kind words you share can make all the difference in the world and in the end, being kind and thoughful to others will help us all, you and them…..

Shine On!!