As a teenager, I was intrigued by a place called Shangri-La. It is noted on Vocabulary.com as any place of complete bliss and delight and peace. Is there a place in this life of constant change and chaos, where stories of war, weather changes, and tragedies are daily headlines that we can find to bring a sense of peaceful balance and quiet to our lives? I have one place that is a haven for peace. It is the creativity zone, a purposeful state of mind that offers delight, surprise, and a dose of bliss. Join me to explore this fascinating place for quiet contemplation and writing.
Yesterday, was the last prompt of Laura Shovan's 11th Annual February Poetry Project. I was distracted and tired. I am sure you know that feeling of just wanting to rest. Before falling asleep, I pondered Michelle Kogan's prompt: write a story poem about inspiring gardens. Of course, she provided images and links for a pre-writing activity. While I could not write anymore late at night, I carried my thoughts over to today, the 1st day of the Two Writing Teachers March Writing Challenge with Shangri-La in mind. A connection came when I found the following quote by Nita Bajoria (The Leap).
“Shangri-La is a state of mind, Vinay. If you’re happy, then everything around you will be okay and in harmony. Nothing is perfect anywhere. We must find our own paradise amidst the chaos. Just the way a beautiful lotus blooms in dirty water.
Nothing is perfect anywhere stayed with me. Writing is not an act of perfection but a pathway to a blossoming creativity zone. Here in the zone, I can "be" - quiet, imaginative, and full of ideas, or just still waiting for my muse to support me. I have the luxury to choose each seed of a story to grow from a budding stage to a spring flower. Does it happen like clockwork each day? Certainly not, but as a gardener cares for her seeds, a writer grows thoughts in her notebook. Below is a draft of Day 28's poem on inspired gardens.
A Garden for All Seasons
Decades ago, I learned about Shangri-La,
A mythical land of beauty, calm, and peace.
I listened to the Letterman’s smooth voices
singing “Shangri-La”, longing for places of
Beauty to slow down life’s hustle-bustle pace.
Gardens became go-to spots for meditation,
Solace, and nature’s resting spots to just be.
I explored local parks, gorgeous
Sanctuaries for tranquility.
Shangri-La was found-
The weeping willow
Sweeping the lawn
With images of
Childhood Maypole dances.
I observed, lingered,
Fell in love with these
Of magical wonder
Where words can
©CVarsalona, 2023 Draft
I invite my writing muse to be my guide this month of daily writing as I connect with the Two Writing Teachers community of international reflective writers.