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My First Poetry of the Year

I wrote these for my creative writing class. My grades are posted, so I can post them here now. My assignment was three poems, twenty line each. I have a tendency to worry more about the mechanics of writing than the actual writing.

Do What You Must Do 

To say nothing rhymes with Orange

Is a cruel and dirty trick;

It has nothing to do with sporange,

But can certainly be rhymed with Blorenge;

As in, “The orange sunset in The Blorenge

Such as glorious sight to see

The splendorous mountains in Wales,

Especially when cast in sea gales.”

Another example is silver,

This one is hard I admit;

But when given a muse,

The words seem to fuse;

As in “A giver of silver

Has a heart pure of gold,

His gratuitous nature is a gift untold.”

So use a dictionary, expound your words

This will set them free;

Never assume there is no room

For words that seem oddly askew;

Write what you write, say what they say can’t be said

And do ,what you must do.



Twenty Lines 

Twenty lines, the request is small;

Unless you lack twenty lines in all

Give me a moment

For you see;

Nothing seems to rhyme for me;

I am having trouble with my Poetry;

It ends with “aye” instead of “eee”

Maybe a muse would set it free;

Could write about cats all warm and fuzzy

Hell I could write about the tramp down the streets who’s a hussy!

No, that won’t do;

Reading that back, that’s slightly blue;

Let’s give this a try,

Let’s end in “I”

The quicker we’re done and this assignment is nigh;

Oh please forgive me,

For I am quick to wit

I must admit I laugh’s a bit;

Before you know it; it over

It’s through;

My last line of this poem

Well, this makes twenty-two.



The Conch Republic Way 

Heading southbound down Highway 1

Toward eclectic dreams in the south Florida sun;

Warm rays on my skin,

Tropical wind in my hair;

Havana-style Cabanas

The Conch republic way;

I’ll slow the pace

Escape the race;

More good than bad,

More happy than sad;

My soul will sing along

To Hemingway’s song;

It’s not just a scheme

But more of a dream;

For me, I pray it comes true;

It’s as strong as Cubano coffee

As sweet as Key lime pie

That Key West passion burns

I’ll get my turn

And leave this world behind.





 Trying to update things I haven’t had much time to spend on lately. One of them is my blog, the other is my Fine Art America gallery page. Hoping when my break from school begins on March 27th to have more time for painting and getting some things done.

 Update on things around here. Well, the mine’s is getting closer to mine and Mother’s home.  The dust is beginning to pile up on the porch. I can really tell if I don’t sweep it off for a day. The car is always covered as well. Just things you have to take care of when you live next to a coal mine. At night you can see lights behind the house that look like they are from a belt-line platform. Not sure if they are putting one in yet, but sure appears that way.  Neighbors couple of parcels away leased their land to the mines so they can come within at least an acre off the back side. I had always hoped to grow old in this house but I think that is a far-fetched plan now. The blasting is daily! Just so sad to watch. I know I need to prepare myself for  backup plan in case the house becomes so damaged we can’t stay here.  Planning in my mind what I do want to do as the years tick on. I know if I can’t be here, I want to be near water. I always wanted a place near the beach when I was young, time to look into making that one a reality. For now though I am here, this is home. I learn to deal.

I look forward to working in the garden this year. This is the first planting season with my new little tractor. It’s a small John Deere  I call “Kermie”. It sure is a work horse for things I have to do by myself. I plan to put it to work as soon as I can. I have to use the tiller first and get the garden ready. I try to remember all the things Daddy told me do. All the advice he gave me before he passed away. He told me how to plant a garden so I think this year is he year I do it right. I will plant field peas, tomatoes, cucumbers, onions. I want some greens out there for sure. Momma has requested potatoes. I am going to try my hand at growing eggplant. Not sure it will grow but have to learn somehow.  I will also put a small patch for herbs. Things like rosemary, basil and cilantro. Oh an we can’t forget the flowers! I saw the most beautiful dahlias on QVC. They were huge! I would love that.  This part of living in the south I love. I can be outdoors on my own spot and do as I please.  I  can sit outside and hear the crickets chirp. All those days I lived in Vegas I would have never dreamed I would one day be planting a garden back home. Life is full of changes baby. Just hang on and enjoy the ride cause you never know what lies ahead!


Life Changes

Well, to say the past month has been filled with life changes would be an understatement.
So the month of April started off with my anticipation of actually getting into the OR, at long last. The first couple of weeks were great. I scrubbed in on several GYN cases, a couple of breast reconstructions, a mastectomy. I even saw a penile debridement ( that was interesting to say the least). The smells didn’t bother me, the sights didn’t either. The doctors were great, even taking time to teach me. The problem came after only 4 days in; I began to really feel the physical strain of it all. Standing in one confined spot for hours was so hard on my knees. They swelled to the point I had to stay off my legs to be able to go back in the next Monday.
The 3rd week I had what the clinic Dr thought was stomach flu combined with a nasty sinus infection. I literally got nauseous in the OR. So by this time I am beginning to think maybe this was not my best idea. This entire year I have gone to class faithfully, great grades (President’s list) but when the rubber hit the road so to speak my body wasn’t having it. So this brings me up to the 5th Week. It’s Sunday. I ask “If I’m not meant for this please give me a sign or strength to endure it” I got a sign alright- heart palpatations with PVC’s, a BP of 158/98 and a trip to the ER where the Dr. tells me I need a heart cath, problem is : no insurance. So the answer was:rest. I withdrew from classes the next day. I will be honest, I am incredibly hurt to not graduate. But I have to be sensible. My momma depends on me too, so I have to account for her well-being in my decision. I had to rest.
Rest has made a world of difference. To try and process all this, I began to pull all my art materials back out. I am painting again and feeling better.
So for me I have to figure out making a living. Central sterile is not as stressful or physically demanding so that is an option. Right now though I’m listening to my creative voice and resting for a few weeks.

Saturday night thoughts

Well actually its just past midnight so it’s officially Sunday morning thoughts. I’ve been up studying, listening to some music. Time to blog a little bit.
This past week has taught me some lessons. One being you are never too old to learn lessons. The other lesson is that even though you think you have figured something/or someone out, it can suddenly hit you that you just thought you had figured it out! Sometimes we live in some pretty veil thin illusions. Maybe some of that is my fault for not wanting to see the truth. I was so enamored by the “wizard behind the curtain”. But tonight I see so clearly and I can honestly say without a shadow of a doubt I know longer believe in the “great and powerful wizard”. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me..
This does not mean I do not believe in the magic. Oh it’s real alright. It’s out there and somewhere I will meet a true “wizard”. One who loves Arleen for Arleen. This would be one of those things they use to tell me you can do nothing about Arleen. One of the God grant me courage, moments of life.
I know to all but a couple of people, this makes little sense tonight. But I thank you for letting me air my thoughts. I needed to purge and walk away from a situation in my life. I have done that now. My soul can breathe and move on. I have my career ahead of me. Extern starts in a few weeks. but first I have several tests, a final check off and of course finals to take. Spring is right around the corner and all things begin anew. Time for Arleen to “bloom” again.

Time to create again…

Well it’s Sunday night and I am sitting here taking a break from my studies to update my blog. Been awhile since the last post.
Mother had cataract surgery on both eyes the first of the month. She is doing remarkable well. Healing nicely. Corrective lenses in both eyes so she can see to read now with only bifocals. That is wonderful!
Classes started back the 15th. I only have two classes this time and to my glee, I only go Tuesdays and Thursdays! Yeah! I love school but the four day schedule I have been on for the past 6 months left me very tired. Not to mention the drive in from Cordova. I have my last procedure class this quarter, Surgery 2170. We cover Orthopedics, Vascular/Cardiothoracic, Pediatrics and Neurosurgery. I also have the Career class where we create and polish our resumes. I begin extern in April. I do not know yet where I will extern. Hoping for Princeton! Cross your fingers!
I have enjoyed my studies so much but I miss my artwork! I am beginning to come out of the “dry” period. I don’t know what else to call it. It was like all the ideas I ever had, all the inspiration and passion I felt, just went away. Like a book someone closed. I understand now that part of that was from the stress I felt after Daddy passed away. A big part of my life was gone. It was my soul’s way of grieving. It just shutdown. Now though, I am beginning to feel that passion again. I have ideas when I’m driving or working on something and I wish I had the time to just sit down and get it out on canvas. I am working hard to get the homework done so I can sit and paint. I have so many ideas lately; like I said the passion is back. I am beginning to feel like Arleen again. Yeah!
Ms Arleen

Yea! Finals are over…

Finished my finals today. I ended up with 3 B’s. As sick as I’ve been I’ll take it! Now time to rest and recoup! Typing this in bed so I am taking my own advice for once.
I think I will work on some artwork while I’m out. Just put paint to canvas and see what reveals itself! It’s those paintings I enjoy the most. Taking a simple line or circle, just a random shape and go from there. I need to create! So very good for my soul.
Ms Arleen

Catching up…

To say the past couple of weeks have been stressful, well would be an understatement.  I have been on such a fast paced schedule for several months now. I suppose it “caught up with me”.  I am now recouping from double pneumonia. Yes, both lungs.  I am finally able to catch a decent breath and talk at the same time. My fever ran the range of low grade up to 103 then back down to low-grade then back up again. A miserable few days. In all I missed 3 days of class. For a typical college, 3 days is rough, but you can makeup pretty fast. When you are dealing with a Career/Vocational College, not so much. First off for each lab missed there is a required 1000 word essay. I missed two labs. I turned those papers in Thursday. If the papers aren’t turned in you fail, no questions asked. I missed an exam as well. I have my Doctor’s slip, so I can retake the test on Tuesday after my final. That is a blessing. I think the biggest whack I took was missing the professional points. That can lower your grade as much as a full letter. So I went from A’s to B’s but right now I will be incredibly happy with B’s (although Arleen prefers A’s). Some miss a few days and are out completely.  I am still in the ballgame so we are happy with that one. So today I am studying for finals and regrouping for next quarter. Thank goodness I have nearly a month away before I go back on the 15th of January. By that time I should have healed nicely. You know, when your twenty you bounce back so much easier than you do when your fifty. Just takes longer but I’ll get there.  In addition, this next quarter will not be as grueling a schedule as the prior quarters. I only have classes on Tues/Thursday. That does ease the pressure a bit, since I have all the personal stuff going on here with Momma and the house/mining issues.

Speaking of Momma, she is having cataract surgery (phaco’s w/lenses) on the 2nd and 9th. I would have rather her had a little additional time in between but that is the schedule . She will be so much happier when this is over. I can only imagine what it has been like for my sweet little momma the past several months. I had no idea, and she didn’t indicate either, that she had such limited eyesight in the right eye. No wonder she leaves the lights on at night, I would too. But thank goodness this time next month she will be right as rain.


Good Morning world




Autumn is in the air…

Today was a cool one here in central Alabama, the kind of day I just wanted to curl up and do nothing.I must admit, Autumn is my favorite season. I love the coolness in the air, the colors of the leaves. Just a great time of year.

This is the 3rd week into Fall quarter so I had much to do!  I love school though. We are getting into the procedure part of classes. We set up and break down mayo’s & back tables all day. When we are not doing that we are either 1st assist or 2nd assist in mock surgery. To say I am incredibly happy with this would be an understatement! I love surgery! Surgery seems to like me too, so far I have a 3.8 GPA.  I know some would say, what are you thinking embarking on this grueling a schedule at 50, (50 this week folks!) but I think my age only makes me stronger. It makes me want it more. I have the resolve and fortitude to withstand whatever I need to complete this. Yes, I’m just getting started! I start my externship in April. Hoping for Princeton, they have 18 brand new state-of-the-art surgical suites and 2 DaVinci suites! Haven’t decided on a speciality yet but my advice has been to get a really good all-around basis of experience than the field that is suited to my attributes will be obvious.

One of the best things I can say about Virginia College, Birmingham is we do get the best education in Surgical Technology. Truly well rounded! We learn it all from pathology, through all the surgical disciplines..General, Cardio, Neuro, Peds, OB/gyn, a little bit of it all. We work from day one on building our surgical conscience, something I have strongly rooted in me now. I seriously hope I don’t piss a Dr off when I ask, “would you like a new set of gloves Dr?” Been told if I phrase as question, they won’t get pissed. We will find out..but that is part of my job, to make sure the surgical field is kept breach of asepsis..Better for everyone, especially and most importantly the patient! There I go again..told you..strong surgical conscience.

Well I must sign off for now. I have some reading to get finished. Going to check out a couple of Surgical blogs I have enjoyed reading lately. One is a Doctors without Borders blog. Such dedication. I really want to do that(volunteer ) one day. This Drs blog ( the link to it is really teaches, I love reading it,I learn so much. He is a great teacher from just a blog post.Well signing off for today..May go out and watch the leaves for just a moment, then hit the books again.