Tag Archives: nature

Music & Art October 2016

I cannot work in silence when I am writing; I need music all the time.  For me, silence can be painful and headache inducing, as much as having television on in the background is also another disturbance and headache waiting to happen.

There are only two times when silence suits me without invoking a headache; when I am walking in nature, woodlands, pathways next to canals and fields etc., or being driven somewhere by car.  I dislike conversations in cars, I don’t like talking, and I like to zone out and forget I am in the car because I tend to feel sick when I acknowledge I am in a car.  I can imagine other places quite easily when I am not spoken to and in a car, this therefore makes it difficult for my body to realise it should be sick.  I also cannot read in a moving car, but I am perfectly relaxed at reading on trains and in busy cafes.

Travelling on buses and in cars makes me tired as well as daydreamy and any more than an hour in either and I am asleep, unless I am very tired or woke up early on the day, I tend not to sleep on trains, I love trains, I have a passion for them which has certainly rubbed off on my son Henry.

We take regular trips on trains just because; we are trying to get into a habit of going on the Severn Trent valley steam railway every couple of months.  I like to look at the scenery around there, the river Severn is the most beautiful river I’ve ever seen, which doesn’t say much because I’ve only ever seen three rivers personally up close.

Music therefore is a very important tool for my writing.  I like listening to instrumental music mostly, such as that found from Nox Arcana, Apocalyptica, classical music, but sometimes I will listen to lyrical music from all styles and eras, such as Patsy Cline’s Honky Tonk Merry-Go-Round, Movie Soundtracks, Kesha and many others. 

If it weren’t for music I don’t think I could be as emotional in my writing as I am with it. 

When I was little I had no imagination, seriously.  I didn’t find my imagination until I was around 9yrs old, I remember teachers from the couple of schools I was allowed to go to complaining that my stories were too realistic and that I lacked imagination.  I was browbeaten by them to develop an imagination and my mum helped with that – by the time she was finished with me my life was destined to be a writer from the age of 11.  It was decided for me and I have to admit I fell into it.

I am not saying for one moment that I don’t enjoy writing, I do.  But a writer’s life was chosen for me, not something I found I wanted, it was literally thrusted upon me.

When I look back through my therapy and my creative recoveries, I have noticed that when I was a child I had planned to be a mother or a teacher and that I had a huge interest in art and fashion.  I had quite vain thoughts as a child, but all of this was discouraged out of me and by the time I was 16 I had forgotten the art life I had wanted for myself and writing took its place.  I know writing is an art form in itself, but I meant painting, sculpture etc., all those other art forms were discouraged simply because my talent lies in writing, not drawing my mum often told me.

I was thrilled when my cousin Shane bought me oil paints for Christmas one year, my mum dreaded it and didn’t encourage me to continue, despite the good painting I did of some obscure Aztec ancient god.  My dad was proud of it, but she looked at it as an expensive past time that she wasn’t looking forward to smelling.

Since living with Paul, he believes I have talents in both but my main skill is writing simply because I don’t practise art enough.  In fact he is right, because I practise less than two hours a time approximately once every couple of months.  Whereas writing, I am practising almost every day for over an hour.

A lot of the time I just draw with pencils or a biro and never colour it in.  When I do really good drawings I am scared to paint them, because I tend to ruin good sketches with painting them wrong.  I have done excellent work that was ruined by paint.  A large African elephant in the Sahara, when painted, all the excellent detail was destroyed and it became cartoonlike, yet it was coloured in with watercolours, watercolour is my main medium. 

I do chalk pastel art too, but again, I am frightened to preserve it, as I tend to over spray and my work is literally washed away.

I am self-taught in both art and writing. 

Music is vital for me to work, this is the primary reason why I can’t work when my son is awake or at home, his noises drown out my music a lot.  He also wants the TV on all the time and that drowns out the music too.  Unlike most writers and artists I don’t like isolating myself in a room alone, I like to be around people, particularly people who respect music and respect the fact that I am working – a child can never do those things, they don’t understand; So, reluctantly I have to work around him and this is something I am dreading when I become professionally published – my time then has to work around the editors I am appeasing and for me, that’s going to be a nightmare.

 

 

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under My art, My inspirations, My life

Conversation with a tree

copyright 2016 Tina Cousins

copyright 2016 Tina Cousins

I had a conversation with a tree today.
The tree told me about the deforestation that his friends were experiencing in some parts of the forest.
He told me that this didn’t bother him much, you see, you have to see the positives of life; that even in death, there is everlastingness.
I asked him what he meant and he explained that nothing that dies is wasted, not truly. Even in death you have your uses, you are needed, and you still exist.
I asked about spirits and reincarnation to him, but he simply replied, perhaps, but there is more to it than that.
Take me, for instance, said the tree. When the woodcutters come to claim my life, I may still have my roots to keep me alive, but if that isn’t to be the case, you must think. What do the woodcutters make from me? Wood to burn to enhance their life for a few hours so they do not freeze to death in winter? Then I become ashes and what becomes of those ashes? Those ashes are still a part of the wonderful circle of life; I become potash for various floras, bringing life into this world, simply by my dying.
I sat fascinated and watched the wind rustle his leaves, too in awe to speak.
The tree continued on with his explanation, with patience and love. I am made into paper, for your journal, enriching the lives of humans by whatever the pages contain within, a store of knowledge, a canvas for art, a visual guide to places you may never have a chance to go to if it weren’t for me.
If not a book then shelves to put them on or I might become the chair that you sit in to read those books, or the bed that you lie in to dream about those books and art pieces.
I may become part of the tools that cut my friends down, giving them a new lease of life and usefulness.
When I am gone and I am cut down, homes may be built in place of where I stood. Perhaps farms will develop here and feed the world? Or perhaps my offspring will grow in my place?
Death is not the end, but it is the beginning of new things.
As to the subject raised earlier, yes, I do believe in spirit and I believe that with the spirit of nature everything is eternal; it just depends on your perception of it; of course, most people’s perceptions about it are wrong.
They cloud themselves up in the dark negativity of everything, which they don’t allow themselves to see the light and what a positive thing it can be.
I thanked the tree for his insight and went home to write this for you.

Leave a comment

Filed under Short Stories

Rozzy 2009 – 2016

My rabbit died today. His name was Rozzy, a masculine version of his original name Rosehip because Pets@Home thought he was a girl and I took him home thinking OK girl name it is then, well my husband and I at the time was obsessed with herbal teas particularly rosehip so we figured that would suit him; it didn’t occur to us to call him anything else even though he was snowy white with tiny pale flecks of grey and big floppy ears, he was a dwarf rabbit they said.
Well anyway, this was in October 2009 and I was two months pregnant with my soon to be son Henry. Around Christmas time I decided that Rosehip was in fact male, because I had rabbits before and they were usually male and chosen by accident not design and he showed he had the stuff down there for being male – I double checked, yes, he was male alright, so Rosehip became Rozzy. Rozzy means fuzzy hair, which suited him a lot as his hair between his ears stuck up like some Mohican.
He also didn’t turn out to be a dwarf rabbit either; he was as big as a cat when he died.
He hadn’t had a good life in comparison to my other pets in my life, in my personal opinion.
His first few months was excellent, he was a house rabbit and I didn’t want anything else to happen to him, I wanted him indoors with us all the time, being that it was impossible to have a dog at that point in time. He was well trained, let loose in the lounge most of the day and locked in his (recommended by the pet shop) 80cm cage!
When I was 7 months pregnant the pregnancy didn’t go too well for me, in fact I became almost physically disabled, I couldn’t bend or crouch down, particularly when I got to 32 weeks, an old lady out walked me with her Zimmer frame and asked if I was alright! That’s how bad I got, I was so embarrassed! I was 27 and outwalked by a granny with a zimmer! The baby kept lying in difficult positions. My mother was coming to stay, I thought, to help me because I am having a bad time with the pregnancy and was warned that the baby might be premature – well little did I know but she had planned to turn my whole world upside-down, she insisted the rabbit be moved into the utility room, so we did this, because she bought her dog with her and he is a terrier breed.
I could barely get out there to visit my rabbit. Eventually when the baby was born, mother left the day after I went home from hospital – she had no intention of keeping her promise to me and teaching me how to bathe the baby, change the nappy, etc, I had to learn all of this from midwives!
I could never understand why she lived with me for seven weeks during my pregnancy and then went back to London the day after the baby comes home! What was the point in coming at all?
To top it all, the baby was in hospital for the first 5 days of his life with an infection, so I was at my wits end and I was calmed at the idea my mother had nursing experience. She didn’t look at it that way and went anyway. She redecorated my house when I was in hospital without permission, things were moved from places they should have been kept and it took us ages to find them all again.
I was wrapped up with the baby for the first 2 months and then I started to go and see my rabbit in the utility again; Paul looked after him for me. I decided that I would like him moved back into the lounge but the midwives and other people said it would be unhygienic for the baby and that the baby might develop allergies or asthma because of the straw.
I wasn’t happy.
I said to my husband that I was about to play bingo online and that if I won anything over £50 I would get a hutch and have the rabbit outside as I would take it as a sign. I won £150! So out he went, reluctantly, to live in the garden, just before autumn of 2010.
Pauls family, my dad, and Paul himself did a lot to try and make the garden decent for my rabbit. But then I got ill and Paul got tied up with all of my chores as well as his own, raising the baby, caring for the pets (as I have more than just a rabbit, I have guinea pigs too), so the garden wasn’t kept good, the utility room became a hoarders haven and because of that, I couldn’t get out into the garden myself unless Paul was there for support as I have chronic vertigo and other disabilities. So I personally only got to see the rabbit to touch him about four times a year.
I promised the rabbit that if I came into any more money, I would buy a large cage on wheels and bring him back in with me, but that didn’t happen until last week. I won £300 last week and I found that a cage 120cm was being sold on ebay for £40. I got it and it was delivered Monday – unfortunately the whole household has flu, I still have it, but I needed to write about this today. I feel so guilty about his life and I feel this is the biggest example of SODS LAW I’ve ever known. My husband had promised that even though he had flu, he would have tried today if it wasn’t raining to get the rabbit moved into the new cage – well it rained today, but the rabbit died this morning and I am so sad, angry at myself, angry at sods law and I just wished he knew I kept my promise to him!
Poor Rozzy. He is buried under the ash tree in the garden with his 5 siblings. 3 guinea pigs and 2 hamsters. Scrabble, Checkers, Autumn, Donald and Bella. His sister Rowan was told and I don’t believe any scientist that tells me that animals don’t understand people, because she shed a tear! She knew him, she was put into a play pen in front of his hutch in the summers with her sister Autumn, Ruby never knew Rozzy her big brother (Ruby is another guinea pig that is companion to Rowan, she is tiny and Rowan became her mum when she moved in as I believe the seller sold Ruby too young, because Ruby had toilet trouble when she first moved in and Rowan helped lick her to help her).
My little boy wants another rabbit. But his dad says no, not yet, he also asked me if I would like to get the girls (my guinea pig duo) another one to two girls to live with them or a boar? Paul used to be a guinea pig breeder (hobbyist) he once had 50 guinea pigs all to himself, he said he misses it.
I only ever had the 5 guinea pigs since I lived here with him. I would love to see baby guinea pigs. They live indoors and they are not the sinus problem, because I had them moved out for a few weeks and it made no difference to me whatsoever.
I love pets. I don’t have much money right now to have more than just 2 cages of guinea pigs, approximately 6 guinea pigs. But if I had more money, I would be like my godmother, Gina. She is like the female equivalent of Ace Ventura! In her glory days (as I call it) she had this amounts of pets = 9 cats, 6 dogs, 6 rabbits, 2 ducks, 6 terrapins, 2 guinea pigs, 6 cockatiels, an aquarium of fish, 3 rats and 3 budgies, she also whilst having all of these to herself, had a donkey for 2 months but had to give it up due to expense and unruly behaviour! Her eldest daughter would also get her mum to babysit her pets for her from time to time, two more dogs.
I would never keep birds though, but chickens or ducks are OK. Cats don’t like me generally and Paul don’t like cats – I am loved by most dogs though, the bigger the dog I’ve noticed, the more likely it chooses me for its pal! I don’t know if it’s because I look like I can handle them and they think, PERFECT the mama is big! I am 5ft 7 and large and prone to gaining muscle when I exercise too easily!
I can see me having 12 chickens, 3 dogs, 30 guinea pigs, 4 rabbits and 6 hamsters, maybe if I had room goats or pigs and always a large aquarium. Well, that’s my dream.
I would like lizards and snakes, but my husband can’t do them, or rats. I don’t mind any animal, as long as it isn’t spiders. I would even love a fruit bat!
People cringe at me, because I will kiss any animal. Trained my guinea pigs to kiss me, kissed a rat, kissed a snake, and kissed a camel. I am very kissable!
I don’t have parrots sitting on my shoulders, I have Irish Wolfhounds. That was typical when I visited Gina, her Irish wolfhound Amy loved me so much she would use me as a chair. Some fete for a huge dog! A lot of pain for my shoulders! I had to sit back on the sofa, rigid so the dog wouldn’t lose its balance!
I nearly worked with animals on 4 occasions, when I lived with my mum. Every occasion she made me forget the idea. I even had job interviews with vets to train as an auxiliary nurse. I had been accepted to become a police dog trainer, as I am very good at training dogs to do almost anything I want them to, I have a knack with them. I also applied to work for the dog kennels but mum wasn’t happy about that either as I would only be earning £100 a week. The other job was to train to be a dog groomer.
Anyway, I should wrap this up and stop the trips down memory lane of all the animals I ever knew, as the list would be astronomical! Seriously, had too many pets in my experience, too many animal friends instead of people friends. So, I hope you enjoyed this post.
Rest in peace my little bunny xxx

2 Comments

Filed under My life

Constructive Procrastination

Procrastination is a part of a creative person’s life; something they get comfortable with and sometimes it seems that procrastination is an essential part of who we are and where we get out ideas from. For me, I am constantly procrastinating; this blog is a fine example because I often do not post a thing for weeks on end!
However, as procrastinating I can be, I am always doing what I consider to be “constructive procrastination” because whatever I am doing when it is not writing regularly for my blog, I am in fact, building myself up for other creative activities – usually writing things that aren’t meant for my blog, reading books, researching, filling my mind up with wacky art and images etc.
What have I done since the last post on my blog?
I’ve started and completed two jigsaw puzzles, one of them was a 1000 piece Ravensburger “Santa Express” Limited Edition 2013, the other was Christmas Quarter 500 piece puzzle, I have since started another one of those Christmas Quarter puzzles, despite it being mid-February. Now this seems like procrastination at its finest, but for me this closes my mind to everyday worries and opens my mind for new ideas – a type of meditation.
I have sketched several pieces of clothing that my characters like wearing in a fantasy story that is in planning stage.
I have also read two adult sized novels “The Light Fantastic” by Terry Pratchett and “Occupy Me” by Tricia Sullivan, I am a slow reader – an adult novel of approximately 300 pages will take me about five to eight days to complete because my brain insists on showing me everything that’s going on in fine details like a movie.
I have also read snippets of other books too, as I am a multi-reader, I can have about twelve books on the go at any one time and not get confused!
I have researched the history of the Cathars, Japanese folklore and Hammer movies.
I have done one or two pictures from an adult colouring in book, another form of meditation for me.
I have sorted out my much overdue papers into organised piles and backed my computer up.
I have watched online videos and looked at online images in regards to natural history, local nature, religious history, philosophy, Cosmic Ordering and been a member of some online Goth, geek and fantasy groups at Facebook.
I have researched to the best of my ability as to how I can get into comic book writing and how to sell my art.
My son has come down sick twice since the last post, so I had to take care of him.
I have watched the rugby and I have written the synopses of several stories I am about to write as novels.
Actual writing I have accomplished as part of a/or several novels – approximately 800 words – not a lot. But that’s fine when you consider I am actually writing an average of 800 to 3000 words per day, even if it is just a diary entry or my 750 words from 750words.com – I am actually writing a whole lot more than I used to!
I am writing in depths about the dreams I have at night. I have been writing down my ideas behind ethical behaviour and the changes that needs to happen to society for a better world. I have written how I feel about my family and circumstances. I have been making business plans and life plans. I have sat down for several hours in the last few weeks with my husband lulling over ideas about our life and even brainstorming my stories with him! I have also helped my son start writing his own stories and he is nearly 6yrs old!
A lot of what I am writing is not actually story based or for the blog. I have written several posts since the last time I have posted on this website, but the situation has been that I found it unsuitable for my readers here because I am either ranting about things or I am giving too many of my ideas away.
I have written notes on historical facts that I feel will help me with my stories. I am a self-student of the social sciences, since leaving the OU course for social sciences because I couldn’t cope with the demands in math and stats as well as having a teething baby on hand.
I have finally decided how one of the novels I am writing is going to end, so now I know this and have written the bullet points; it should be finished by April 20th, and yes, I am going to approach someone with it. The story is a horror with some Japanese folklore element to it, because I have studied the Japanese culture and language a lot in the last eight years as I love their comics and their sense of humour and horror; if and when I get published, I hope this opens a doorway to Japanese media, because I would love to travel to Japan and use the language skills I’ve developed. I should get on quite well in Japan speaking Japanese, as I have learned enough to get me by as someone who speaks the language a little better than the average tourist, though learning their script is near impossible for me at this stage!
I have also discovered through an ESA examination that I might have a neurological disorder I should discuss with my doctor, because I have been blacking out, phasing out, getting shaking hands and been getting a lot of problems with my upper body mobility. I have noticed that this is slowing my writing down a lot, because I am making huge errors such as forgetting how to use punctuation – writing different words than I originally wanted to and generally not making much sense at times, so if you come across this, please note it and let me know, thanks!
I write descriptions in depth or comedy scenes, but none of this is embodied into a story yet.
I don’t know if I am a proper writer and I don’t know if proper writers do exactly what I’ve been doing, but I am curious to find out. Is there more to being a writer than just sitting down writing poems and stories? Do we essentially write mostly about anything but those two main ideas society have about us?
I have never joined a writers group so I wouldn’t know. I would like to join my local writers group but the bus time tables make this difficult for me as the classes are twice a month at 7:30pm and the last bus to my village is at 8pm and I can’t walk that far home these days – I can’t drive either and have been advised not to with my medical conditions, such a shame really as I would have enjoyed it.
So that’s me since the New Year in a nutshell.

Leave a comment

Filed under About my work

The Wolf’s Rose

The night is chilled and the air is icy

Winter nips at your cheeks and nose

Wandering far into the forest, you are lost my little Rose

Simplicity doesn’t exist where complexity plays

A daring youth like you amaze me in all ways

Hark! Hear the sound of the midnight wolves

Playing a melody to attract lost fools

You follow their tune, blissfully ignorant of the dangers they bestow

And onwards you follow, and onwards you go

Through the nocturnal world you flounder

From tree to tree you flow

Further into the orchestra, into something you don’t know

Into the jaws of hunger

Into the mists of time

Into the raging beasts that are ready to dine

And now you’re here, cold in my arms

A little Rose you’ve been

And I have plucked you from the world and you’ll never again be seen

Not by mortal eyes no how and you’ll stay forever with me

No mortal shall hear your cries when you beg me for release

And now you’ve joined the shadow world

A place that’s made from fear

And you will sup upon mortal babes and breed with me more fear

And nothing shall stop your pain, when you can’t kill anymore

You’ll always give into the hunger and eat their flesh that’s raw

And I’ll be here for you always

My precious little one

To remind you of who it was, that hid you from the sun

Oh my little Rose, look at what you’ve become!

Leave a comment

Filed under Poems S - U

I love the twilight

 

The sky above the spinney is pale blue before the night

Darkness becomes denser and the shadows form under the royal coloured sky

The sky turns into shades of lilac, pink and violet before disappearing into the darkness with the deepest of indigo

The whole place turns silent in the coming of the dark, like some stark memorial from events that happened years and years ago

This time of day is known as “twilight” it’s something that I try to see each night

It calls to me, deep from within my soul

Something deep and dark but right

 

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Poems G - I

Ravens up there

Ravens fly

Ravens high

Up there in the far blue sky

Diving here

Diving there

Flying circles in the air

Oh what comfort they give to me

Their bad reputation, it does deceive

For they’re just birds that fly on by

Whether black or blue like the sky

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Poems P - R

Who has ordered the roses life to be short?

A rose has come into bloom

Death will be upon it too soon

Its life is short

This I’ve been taught

Happiness soon turns into gloom

Who has ordered this to be? Whom?

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Poems V - Z

Cherry

Bitter and sweet is the cherry treat
She’s one of nature’s surprises
Bright and red and its easily said
In a yogurt she quite suffices.

1 Comment

Filed under Poems A - C

The Lorax

Not my artwork

I had never read nor watched The Lorax by Dr. Suess until last Sunday (I watched the movie first – shock horror and gasp) and I am surprised I’ve missed such a gem in my childhood.

To be honest, I would of hazard a guess that Dr. Suess had written only about ten stories, but that is not true; I am surprised to discover via goodreads.com that he wrote a great deal more than that and I endeavor to read all he has ever written.

Dr. Suess has the kind of personality that I love. His humor is strange, nonsensical with seemingly illogical plots, though to me they are very logical and has a great understanding of creative children and eccentricity.

I loved the Lorax movie because of the color and the deep meaning behind the plot. I love anything that tries to show humanity the errors of their ways, like Bee Movie; The Lorax has a message for humanity that shows you must never take your natural roots for granted and you must protect, nurture and above all respect nature and the environment for future generations.
I am passionate about the subject behind the movie and you can find out more of what I think about this by following this link.

https://fantasyfed.com/2015/07/22/living-responsibly-2/

Dr. Suess’s worlds are beyond fantasy, they are usually worlds based deep within our consciousness. Dr. Suess takes us behind the reality of humanity in many of his stories, The Lorax being an example of one of those tales.

The artwork within the movie as in the books, are very abstract and I like that.

When I first saw the advertisement of the movie, I was puzzled as to what the storyline could possibly be? When I saw the trees I thought it was something along the lines of a candy-man story, another Willy Wonka of sorts because the trees looked like candyfloss on candy-canes, but it wasn’t. It was an adorable world.

Funny in parts and irritating in others, only in that the irritations are my own personal views of humanity and seeing how The Lorax could someday possibly become a reality, particularly as I have known a child who lived in such a dense urban area, they never ever saw grass and when they were taken to a park they were terrified of the grass and refused to walk on it with their family.

Books and movies like this should be more widely available to the public and written in many different ways; because I think society needs to have it drummed into their minds about just how precious nature is and caring for the environment should be a necessity in everybody’s daily life.

Governments should forget trying to drum into their societies minds about individual peoples lifestyles regarding image and start concentrating on lifestyle issues that affect the world as a whole; Like recycling, sea/ocean clean ups, global warming, over population, city and town expansion etc.

Leave a comment

Filed under reviews