I Got a 70% in Blogging University

Blogging U.
And I’m 100% okay with that.

As many of you know, I tried my hand at poetry writing a bit ago. I’m always telling people how much I love Blogging University, and I was taking full advantage of the coursework by taking part in the Poetry class.

So here’s the confession: I only did seven out of the ten lessons. And it really bothered me that I didn’t finish.

And here’s the catch: One of the benefits of Blogging University  that I always rave about is the fact that you can do the free course at your own pace. It’s totally okay to skip lessons or fall behind.

But I didn’t listen to myself, and it ate at me. My pre-holiday life was filled with personal and professional deadlines, my energy level was fighting a sugar-induced dip, and my brain was starting to spin towards next year’s goals. I had the lessons on my to-do list, but kept pushing them off until the lateness was getting pretty embarrassing. Headaches ensued, and I considered staying up hours later to catch up. Not an optimal choice.

Then it hit me. I had the freedom to let go. That’s what Blogging University is all about. I can always take the class over, or write those prompts another time. It will still be free so no $ lost. Only wisdom gained.

The fact that I was three lessons behind did not take away from the reality that:

  • I actually wrote poetry for the first time in forever.
  • I learned about different poetry styles.
  • I met some seriously talented writers in my class who are now my role models.
  • I received critiques that made my writing stronger.
  • I was greatly encouraged by the community.
  • And now I have some incredible poetry to read when I relax with coffee and my WordPress Reader.

What an incredible take-away! Yeah, I only hit 70% of the assignments, but I benefitted 100%.

Thanks for the free courses, Blogging University!

See you on the Commons if you are in Blogging 101 in January 🙂

Beloved – Poetry Day 7

Something about the very word “beloved” causes a frisson in us. Out of the people that matter to you, who matters the most? Whom do you love, or whom have you loved more than anyone else? What does the word “beloved” summon up in your imagination? What songs, poems, stories, movies spring to mind? Who is your beloved?

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I can’t look at this assignment without thinking of the Bible passage from Song of Solomon 6 and Song of Solomon 5:16. “I am my beloved and he is mine…”…”This is my lover, this is my friend.” I am nowhere near as eloquent as the author of the passage, and I realize that there is no way to verbally capture the intense love I feel for the one I was fortunate enough to marry. He balances me. I am strong and would be fine on my own, but he takes me to a better, higher, stronger, more passionate plane. For which I am thankful.

This poem is a Petrarchan (or Italian or Miltonic) Sonnet, according to http://www.sjsu.edu/faculty/harris/Rom_Travel/Handouts/RomPoetryForm.pdf.

It’s written as a 14 lines poem with the first eight-line octave in abba, abba format showing a situation, followed by a six-line cde, cde resolution:

It has been twenty-four years
On this roller coaster we call life
Happiness, sadness, triumphs and fears
Since that day I became your wife.
Balance and love are the keys
Taking turns, being strong, showing love
Bolstering up the one who’s in need
Showing grace. You. My beloved.

An etching on my soul
You make me whole
And will ’til the end of my days
You’re the yin to my yang
The whole shebang
I adore you now and always.

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Fallacy – Poetry Day 6

Flat Earth

Today, let’s write poems that are wholly illogical.
Let’s see how miserably we can get reason to fail; both our reason and the reason that guides our readers.

Try not to consider this prompt as a call to nonsense but rather a call to use your good (creative) sense to arrive at firmly misconstrued ends. Surprise yourself!

Flat Earth
Image courtesy of https://www.flickr.com/photos/a_siegel/2356136219

The earth is flat and all that
I was told by the man in the moon
As he munched on cheese
Imported by mice
Who saw (in blinding belief)
The edge of the world
From their vantage
Atop the clock

This post is part of the Poetry 101 course from the WordPress Blogging University.

Freedom – Poetry Day 5

Today I did a Cinquain poem. As I was looking for a type of poem-style to write, I came across this style. There are different ways to write a Cinquain. I saw a 2-4-6-8-2 style and different 1,2,3,4,1 – word styles. I went for the latter. That was further refined in this example by stating  word, two adjectives, three verbs, a descriptive sentence then a final word relating to the first:

Flying

Freedom
Empowered, unhindered
Unleash, unfetter, deliver
Ready to take flight
Volitant

 

This post is part of the Poetry 101 course from the WordPress Blogging University.

Sleep – Poetry Day 3

It’s time to think deeply about sleep. Dive into the pool of night and let whatever it is you find there take poetic form. (I hope this prompt doesn’t make an insomniac out of you!)

SleepSoft
Lullabies
Evolve into
Epic tales as my physical momentum is put on
Pause

*This post is part of the Poetry 101 course from the WordPress Blogging University. 

An Email That Changed my Life

IMG_20150109_204843926-MOTIONOne year ago today, I was working night security/gate at the Eastern Traditional Archery Rendezvous when I received an email that changed my life.

It said:

I work on the Happiness team at Automattic and would like to chat
about your recent Happiness Engineer application.

Are you free on Friday, July 25th, 8:30am Eastern time to have a text
chat on Skype?

I had applied months before and by that point had figured it wasn’t my time yet. I’d wait another year and try again. Instead, that email led to an interview, a project, another interview, a trial, and the best job on the planet.

The past year has been a blur, and I’ve learned a ton.

I love how it’s my job to interact with people who use WordPress.

When I work in live chat, I instant message with people who are learning about their sites. When I work on mobile, I get to text to people who use our app. I’m currently working with the Jetpack plugin and learning all sorts of things about network connections, third party plugin integrations and the powerful options we offer people from spam guards to beautiful galleries to math notations.

And then there’s one of my favorite parts of my job. Working in Blogging University.  While I know I’m actually in there to help others, the truth is that I go there for inspiration myself. Each class holds community members who learn together and build friendships. It’s beautiful to be part of this.

I get to travel. I get to meet new people online every day. I now have friends all around the world (as a distributed company we all work from home but interact enough online to become close friends). I get to celebrate the triumphs of WordPress. I learn about struggles people have with WordPress and become part of a solution. People with a thirst for knowledge surround me constantly, and I can set my own hours so I can be with my family.

Who can ask for more? I am truly thankful.

You can read more about my job application process here if you are interested.

Here’s to many more years!