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what moves you to write...

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“Pay attention to the weather, to what breaks your heart, to what lifts your heart. Write it down.” Ellen Meloy

This past week, we’ve had the most terrific string of thunderstorms here in Bozeman. The clouds gather together and the sky begins to turn. Suddenly there is a quick breeze of cool air. Birds quiet, a low rumble you almost mistake for nothing at all, sounds from far away.

Leaves shimmy and soon the branches sway, the rumble is louder, closer, and tiny raindrops intermittently spit…

And then… it comes…. Big fat wet drops that spatter the concrete, the wind returns, lightening cracks and rain pours down in sheets.

It’s over almost as soon as it began, followed by skies of blue and moving clouds.

This has happened several days in a row now. Almost like clockwork. There is something to that, though I’m not sure exactly what. It’s on the lips of many here, who hope this keeps the fires away.

As to what breaks and lifts your heart… life moves us off center and it takes our own volition to remember alignment and coordination. We want to be moved, and we want to retain authenticity. This movement between is the dance.

There is something to writing this down. Taking time to sense, to sort, to detail an experience, to confront each word you conjure. With precision, scrutiny, honesty.

(This isn’t the same as censoring or critiquing your self as you write – it’s a way of slow writing – the physical sensation of writing intentionally slows you down to put attention on each word as it is penned. It's a practice of saying exactly what you mean with nothing extra. Deliberate and lean.)

This week… give it a go. Write daily about the weather, about what moves you in one direction or another… see what you unearth.

always in motion,


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  • My new journal sits on my dining table untouched. I haven’t ( can’t ) written. When I take my pups out side each morning at 5am I stand still and listen. Then I go inside see the journal but don’t write one word. The time is there but my list is too long.
    I’ll try harder.

    Linda on
  • Thank you Fia. Your words are like a beautiful dance. I feel the same way when I write and paint, always attempting to capture a moment or observation I don’t want to lose. Enjoy your day! Jan

    Jan Heaton on
  • Can growth really happen without putting it to words? Speaking or writing one’s perceptions seems to deliver the concept to a vital area of the brain to understanding

    Michele on
  • I slowed down enough to read this, next.. three deep breaths. Thanks

    Eve on
  • “…putting attention on each word as it is penned.” I have a strong pull to something within this; the timing is perfect! Thank you, Fia, for sharing.

    Sue on

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