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    I cast my creative net this afternoon looking for a prompt to corral into a provocative thought. Using my birthday digits, 2-13-50 as a pattern, I selected the second book from the stack of unread volumes that crowded my desk. Flipping to the thirteenth chapter, I noted the 50th word:  11:30 p.m. and considered how this number could inspire meaning for me.

     The analog clock allows the passage of time to become visible as its hands trace their circular course. Time traverses an elastic journey, sometimes racing in spinning blurs, other times dragging like a kid on the way to the dentist, every step an effort of will. 11:30 p.m. casts a variety of shadows varying with the angle from which I view it.

     Health—I’ve had brushes with serious illness and experienced the visceral wake-up call that time is too valuable to be wasted. For over 40 years it provided a benchmark by which I assayed “Big Stuff” or “Small Stuff,” and decided if things were worth sweating.  Yet only recently have I renewed my commitment to maintain my body with dedication, resolve and yes, sweat.

     Relationships—I’m struck by the sense of seasons in friendships. Bonds forged through common experience, life-saving compassion or spirit-fueling joy link friends through time. Some pulse with vitality for a lifetime; others quicken for an interval and become warm memories of grace and support no less meaningful for their brevity. Like a clay sculpture, I am shaped by every relationship.

     As a parent, 11:30 p.m. highlights that the training phase is completed. Whatever I could teach, they have learned—or consciously discarded.  My children are 26 and 24. I now serve as consultant, cheer-leader, willing resource and occasionally as devil’s advocate.

     Dreams—One year ago, I heard the ticking of the clock preparing to toll my 61st birthday. I admitted that the only obstacle which prevented my dreams of writing a book was my willingness to commit to it 100% and make it happen. With courage in my pocket and a heart racing at mach speed I marched onto the path of my life as writer. The universe rewarded my resolve and Palm City Word Weavers leapt off the pages of the Stuart News into my day-planner. I’ve added “writer” to the many hats I wear and vibrate with the vitality of pursuing a dream. This community of “Writers helping writers” nurtures and encourages my efforts. Friendship has been the serendipitous bonus gratefully received.

Tick, tick, tick, in what way does 11:30 p.m. deliver meaning into your lap?


Comments on: "11:30 p.m., tick, tick, tick" (1)

  1. Gayle, you write so very beautifully, your words just flowing across the paper or, in this case, the screen. I loved your method of finding a writing prompt and shall remember it when next I look for one! Being a kindred spirit of yours, as we continue to discover, I nodded as you ticked off each of the meanings 11:30 p.m. delivered to you. I can only add one more which is strictly from my insomniac point of view: 11:30 p.m. usually is daily decision-making time, when I decide whether to try to sleep or to stay awake longer in an effort to summon sleep to tiptoe in and surprise me 🙂

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