Loyalty to the Music – Eclectic Corner #13


image: my sister playing the piano with her husband and child listening; from martha0stout’s phone

Practice makes progress. –my nephew’s t-shirt

Years passed, she grew her hair out, cut it off, bleached it and dyed it kelly green. The coloring grew out and she walked down the aisle of folding chairs towards a stage where she smiled and shook hands with her former principal and received the piece of rolled up paper that she’d worked long and hard to gain.

She applied for university and received admittance. Long days and even longer nights were spent in study and practice.

So much practice.

“Why did I decide to go into Music Education and become a band director again?”

Her roommate shrugged as she flipped another page in her textbook, “You know, I can’t remember. Probably because, out of all of your siblings, you were one of the few who loved learning instruments so much that you went from the piano to the violin to the cello to percussion and at that point, you might have wondered, ‘Well, why not learn them all?'”

This story is based on one of my sisters who did indeed learn most of the instruments that are spread throughout my family rather than just one or two like the rest of us. (She also did that thing with her hair, though I have no idea how it ended up in here.)

This was inspired by this month’s Eclectic Corner #13: Loyalty and yes, I did all three parts of the challenge at once again because that just seems to work best for me at the moment.

Ham and Cheese – Thankful Thursday

Today I am grateful for the ham that is my sister. Although I think she’s a little bit more serious at times about things she still plays them up because, well, she can. It’s just something that a lot of us do, but this sister is able to pull it off a lot better than the rest of us.

Check out the original Thankful Thursday. (I will update link when able.)

EDIT: Link updated as of July 18, 2015.

Teapot – Thankful Thursday

There will be times you just want to scream
Even when life just seems like a dream
At times you don’t know what to do
Please keep on trying
Often you’ll find yourself dying
To suppress the smile threat’ning to show.

Today I am thankful for my sister Sara. It’s her birthday today and Teapot was a nickname that she had through middle and high schools and all the way through university and her first teaching job.

Check out the original Thankful Thursday. (I will fix the link when able.)

What is Wealth?

Sometimes she found herself looking around at what they had to show for all the long centuries of their lives.


They had the clothing that they wore and the uniforms that came when they needed the battle-cloth to protect their skin. They had no shoes save when they were needed as well, but there was nothing else to their names. They had learned to read by watching through windows and around trees before they perfected their ability to fade from sight. They had learned their maths the same way. Eventually, in the more recent years, libraries had been opened across the width and breadth of the planet where anyone could enter and make use of things within. They were unable to take things out, lacking a proper home address to do so, but they were also able to find a place to fade from sight and spend the night.

They know things that have long been forgotten. Some things that they know were never known by enough to be noticed when they were forgotten and still other things they know simply because they were as curious as the rest of the world for knowledge. To them, knowledge is a kind of wealth that you can accumulate as much as you want as long as you are able to remember it all straight. There have been many throughout their lives that have said they are richer than Mayan kings of old or the Egyptian pharaohs at their greatest or even than the warlords who lay plunder to the world over.

But they have no friends, no family or purpose to their lives and that, more than anything else, is what makes them feel poor.

Listening Down the Hall

I’m sitting at the end of the hall and learning some things from listening in on what’s going on in the main room.

“I was in the 7th grade when President Kennedy was assassinated.”

“I was in the 7th grade when the World Trade Center Towers fell.”

The first sentence was my mom.

The second sentence was my younger sister.

They are the two people in my family that are the most alike in personality.

Just another realization in my life.

Remembered Scene – SoC

image: sister and Oz, martha0stout's phone

image: younger sister and Oz, martha0stout’s phone

“What are you doing?”

“I’m just playing on my phone.”

“You’re not going to take my picture are you?”

“Of course not.”

“Then what are you doing? What the? That’s a flash! You’re taking my picture!”

“Stop hiding behind your cat, you look fine!”

“Then why are you laughing?!”

“Crap! Dropped my phone.”

“I’m not falling for that!”

This little moment in time was remembered because of the Stream of Consciousness prompt: scene/seen.

Forever and a Day

Together, forever, no matter how long
From now until the end of time
We’ll be together and you can be sure
That forever and a day
That’s how long we’ll stay
Together and forever more.
–John Loeffler

It’s been a year and a day since my little sister, the baby girl in our family, put on her white dress, pulled her hair up in curls, curled her hand around our father’s arm and walked down the aisle.

A year and a day since she put aside our father’s name for a new one.

Since her life changed more than any of us ever imagined as children.

She’s still happier than I’ve ever seen her in our entire lives.

He’s still glowing whenever he talks about her.

Since he watched her walk closer to him.

A year and a day since he shared his home and name.

It’s been a year and a day since my new brother, whose just two months older than me, put on his vest and tie, combed his hair just right, stood still with his best friend at his side and watched his future enter the room.

No matter where our destiny leads
I’ll be there for you, always come through
And that you can believe.
–John Loeffler


image: by my sister
image: by my sister

When my sister (the one just older than me) heard that I had finally gotten a blog (or rediscovered one I’d apparently had for almost three years, though now I’ve had it for four years) she wanted to make me a header. She was going to color it and such but only got this far.

That’s supposed to be me, by the way. I sometimes leave things in really random places if I don’t put it away right away. Can’t tell you the number of times I’ve had to ask my eldest nephew to find my cane. He can always find it!

The Fell Clutch of Circumstance

Every time I was kicked by circumstance and chance, I picked up whatever broke that time and clutched those pieces to my chest and kept going. –afternoonofsundries, 1 + 1 = fearless

I have no one but myself to blame for failure,
Not withstanding the way life can be.
Voices may try to shout me down
Into the ground, but them I can ingnore.
Cuts and bruises on my heart and soul,
They will not fade quickly nor quietly in time.
Until I can stand and bear them with honor,
Silently, in myself, they must hide.

This poem is dedicated to my second eldest sister, the one I live with. She is the kind of woman who didn’t want to lead, would have been fine following, but life did not have that in store for her. Instead of refusing to face up to the trials in front of her, she faced forward, and with her arms full of children, stepped forward into the darkness of a paradoxically foreign and yet familiar path.

Today is her birthday. All Saints’ Day as well. Our mother went into labor for her on Halloween and she was certain that her ‘tricksy’ daughter would be born that night, but not so. Instead, she came in the morning like a blessing.

My sister is not perfect. I don’t think she’d want to be, because then she’d have nothing left to learn and she loves learning new things.

Life has not always been kind to her, nor to her children, but she doesn’t let that set the tone for the day, for the month, for the year. She chooses what that tone is, what her tune is and she dances. For her, circumstances shouldn’t dictate who we are, but rather, they should be something that helps us to dictate what we want to be.

Her head is bloody, but unbowed. (Invictus, William Ernest Henley)


Wake up early dawn
Don’t have time to complain here
Have to get to work.
Couldn’t sleep last night
Woke up before the sky brightens
Manage to smile.
Come home at the end
Kick off shoes and change your shirt
Pull on comfy tee.
Kick back, close your eyes
Breathe in and laugh out loud now
Keep eyes closed and smile.
Listen to the noise
Remember why you’re going
Hear heart memories.

 This poem is less about me and more about my sister. She’s an awesome lady.