Found Objects – Guest Post from Pamela Noal
Welcome to Pamela, our guest poster for today.
Pamela came to the Springwood workshop wanting to solve some of the problems she was encountering in writing a family memoir for her children. She found the early exercises helpful – listening to other people’s off-the-cuff responses to various provocations gave a sense of “controlled listening and peaceful learning”. She enjoyed the exchange of ideas throughout the day and loved the movement exercises and how they led to a feeling of being accepted and able to calmly progress thoughts.
Her overall comment: “Just dynamic !!”
Thank you, Pamela!
What I really love about the piece below, is that Pamela finds such a clear connection to her father; not just from the weird object but from everything around it, including the paper it was wrapped in. It’s a very rich metaphor for anyone who has seen a loved one deteriorate.
Over to you, Pamela:
The problem Pamela was facing in her writing:
During the workshop, as writing and discussion tasks were shared within the group, I shared my concerns that I felt my unfinished work had locked me out of coming up with fresh ideas for additional and varied written expression.
The point in the workshop that changed my pattern of thinking was to learn that my project was indeed a difficult one…I had shared a personal account of living with the decline of a loved one through the stages of dementia, and the workshop facilitator inspired me to continue to direct my focus to complete this story.
The Activity That Changed Everything:
The glorious part of the workshop was the unravelling of a “pot luck gift” which immediately broke my silent thoughts into the reality of how my “creative writing workshop gift” became an instant connection to the person I had written much about in my personal thoughts and I was immediately able to freely write about my Dad with dementia and lovingly, Difficult times became precious memories.
What Pamela wrote:
It was indeed a lucky dip that Spring day when I chose a purple crepe paper encased magical gift from the writing skills workshop in Springwood. It was unravelled to become a measuring tool of sorts .. that object took my thoughts straight to my father’s garage work bench and I could instantly smell the sawdust as I unlocked that
precious thought. Dad’s hands were his life’s work and his skills were beyond any measure. As I looked again at the unravelled purple crepe paper now sitting on my writing desk, looking shabby, torn and a mix of sized pieces, I could only think that this was the parallel of what had become of my father’s life as he remained silently seated and asked for nothing. The colour, the vim and vitality had all moved on but the connection to important senses, the holding of his “carpenter’s hand”, brought out the beautiful moment to share his perfect smile. Indeed a measure of time !