Tag: creativity


the only dependable season

24th April

I am forever grateful for rubrics of devotional life. Certainly, they are foundational, dependable, and formational. But there is more. Taking my hand and uncovering pieces of mystery about His presence, God has lovingly healed more and more of the aching places in my heart. Creative spiritual practices–along with the beloved time and space of quiet with my Bible and fervently scribbled prayers in my journal–beckon me deeper into the love of God through Christ.

When I attended college, my soul was tender. A lonesomeness occupied my heart. Longing to be out of my small-town life, yet lost within the wide world outside of it, finding a campus ministry in which to be involved proved a brick-by-brick time in my spiritual journey. In those four years, I gained much ground in knowing what it meant to walk in relationship with Jesus. … Read More »



crow delivers the goods

Posted by Sarah Schock in creativity, poetry, poets, writing. No Comments

10th April

Just as meaning in a conversation rises out of an exchange of ideas originating in shared experience, meaning in a poem rises out of collaboration between a poet and a reader. Each brings a history to the occasion of the poem: the poet to its composition, the reader to its text.

One implication of this is that every reading of a poem is subtly different from every other reading of it. This is true for a reader returning to a favorite poem or for two readers discussing the same poem. Another implication is that no reading of a poem can be definitive. The meaning of a poem evolving through multiple readings by multiple readers escapes the control of the poet. Nevertheless, the poet sets the limits of that meaning.

I suspect Robert Frost had something like this idea in mind when, in … Read More »



interview: matthew lippman

Posted by Sarah Schock in creativity, interview, poetry, poets, writing. No Comments

3rd April

{an interview with poet matthew lippman upon the release of his third collection of poetry, AMERICAN CHEW, which won the burnside review book prize in 2013}

when you picture someone reading your poetry, how do you see them? what do they think about, wear, and do? or, maybe a better way to say it: who do you write for? and how do you see your writing nourishing others?

I want my poems to be generous creatures, and so the audience in my mind is everyone—high school students, teachers, attorneys, other poets, bus drivers, mechanics. If my mechanic, Tony, picks up my book, gets into one of my poems, and is entertained and moved by it, I’m doing my job. It’s not so much a case of nourishment as it is a case of having fun. By fun I mean this, being moved, in any way, … Read More »



mirrors made of ink

Posted by Sarah Schock in christian living, creativity, writing. 1 Comment

29th March

Books are the mirrors of the soul. –Virginia Woolf

In Christian writing, it seems required to inject a “deeper meaning.” Humans were designed to search for purpose in everything. Metaphors form a language that acts as a bridge between mind and heart, delivering fundamental truths about the universe.

Metaphors highlight true nature. Words or phrases that don’t literally describe something give an in-depth description that could’ve been missed with a physical description. They can also be symbolic representations of an object, situation, or abstract notion such as love, fear, anger, etc.

Humans are intended for relation; God created us with an ache to share our feelings with each other. However, there is a gap: there is no language to describe emotions. If you look at the words used to describe abstractions, they actually describe physical sensations. The following sentence shows a sense of … Read More »



breaking through: the sacredness of words

27th March

The preparation is done, the centering of mind and heart by prayer, Bible study, or walking through nature and listening.

I sit down at my brown wooden desk in a dark room. The desk lamp lights only the paper. Everything else is back in the shadows. When I begin to write, my hand moves into the light.

The work of our hands is part of creation, because God’s work continues to be done in the world through human hands. Writers put words together and create sentences and stories, bringing the unspoken into the light and giving it form.

In the shadows I wait, listening until I see an image, hear an echo, or feel a presence. Then I wait for words to come that will root this into my time and place.

As words come, I write them down. When they stop, I set … Read More »



writing my way in

13th March

Recently I was asked to visit a senior English class at the school where I teach World Religions.  I was excited to be entering into conversation with students not just as their familiar teacher but as  a ‘real poet.’  But as I was telling students about the writing life, when I was singing the usual song about how hard it is to write, and how I have to drag myself to do it sometimes, a student I knew quite well looked at me half in annoyance and half in genuine curiosity.  He asked, “Then why do you do it?”

My brain sputtered.  No one had asked me that, that directly, in a long time.  I could have gotten dramatic and said because I have no other choice!  It must come from my soul or surely I will perish! Instead I said … Read More »



interview: matt appling

28th February

when you picture someone reading your book, how do you see them? what do they think about, wear, and do? or, maybe a better way to say it: who do you write for? and how do you see your writing nourishing others?

I think of several different people reading Life After Art.  The book is primarily aimed at people who don’t already consider themselves “creative.”  Businessmen, soccer moms, teachers, trash men, high school or college grads.  I think creative people will also get a lot out of it too.  In fact, I hope they read it, and then give it to their non-artsy friends.  I hope the book helps release them from some chains, shows them that creativity is something they can take part it, and helps them create the life they are created to live.

 

how do you use your own creative … Read More »



where i find myself: seasons

17th February

My previous post launched my ongoing series about faith, writing, and what I keep calling (perhaps not very poetically, ironically enough) “the language of place”—specifically, my place, my native state, my home. California.

Well, I realized I might not have quite as good of a hold on my own idea as one would hope when, after I finished “explaining” my topic to someone recently, he said, “So it’s about slang?”

Nah, dude. Not exactly.

But OK then, what is it about? The truth is, not completely knowing is part of why I write. The act of writing is an act of exploration, as is (in my experience) the act of having faith. Not to mention the act of living day to day on the shaky ground and in the smog-laced atmosphere of the Golden State.

 

***

 

Commenting on my last post, in which I … Read More »



tracking the walking poets

18th November

So we are grasped by what we cannot grasp;
it has inner light, even from a distance—
and changes us, even if we do not reach it…

—Rilke, “A Walk”

 

 I cannot be the only child who was first exposed to “devotional poetry” through the ever-famous work “Footprints in the Sand”. I saw it mostly on the walls of friends or neighbors—in embroidered prints with sand and water and sky sewn in around the verses to set the scene of a dreamed of beach.

While I was never as enamored of it as everyone else seemed to be, I did accept its sentiment of spiritual comfort, then. The allegory of a walk made sense to a child raised on Bible stories and fairy tales of adventurous wanderings and who had walked barefoot by the water on many summer holidays. And there … Read More »



books & culture review of MAKING MANIFEST

8th November

yesterday, CT’s site ran a fine review of MAKING MANIFEST, which was released digitally this week in a revised edition. check out the review here and tell everyone you know about it!

 




resources for faithful practitioners of creativity and creative practitioners of faith...

the only dependable season

I am forever grateful for rubrics of devotional life. Certainly, they are foundational, dependable, and formational. But there is more. Taking my hand and...

crow delivers the goods

Just as meaning in a conversation rises out of an exchange of ideas originating in shared experience, meaning in a poem rises out of...

interview: matthew lippman

{an interview with poet matthew lippman upon the release of his third collection of poetry, AMERICAN CHEW, which won the burnside review book prize in 2013}

when you...