Friday, March 2, 2007

The first post for Kanteker's Craft

This is my first attempt at managing a blog. I read several of them and have a number of friends who are very active with their own blogs. I decided this would be an excellent opportunity for me to meet people with similar interests who are trying to accomplish similar things in their lives. I believe that we must always share the knowledge that we have in an attempt to help each other. Likewise, we must always listen to others more than we speak so that we may add others' wisdom to our own.
I am an aspiring writer who never seems to find the time to really write. I am married with a toddler who is not yet three years old. We are also expecting our second child at the end of July this year. When I add to this a full time job and an active role in my church I find myself with very little remaining. However, despite my lack of time I have not tossed my aspirations aside. I try to spend some of my free time reading, both for fun and to learn. Most often this time is found at work during my lunch break. Many of the books that I have read, or am planning to read are books on the craft of writing. I also read a number of helpful blogs and listen to several excellent
podcasts on the craft. I will list some of these for you in a future post.
Back to my family. I met my wife while I was teaching English as a Second Language at
Ohito High School. Ohito is a small town in Japan which actually no longer exists. It has been joined with some of its neighbors and is now called Izu City. At any rate, Ohito was located in Shizuoka Prefecture in Japan. This is a prefecture along the coast line to the southwest of Tokyo. If you look at Mt. Fuji on a map and then draw a line to the south east you'll find the peninsula where I lived.
Shizuoka is a beautiful prefecture known for its strawberries and the quality of its green tea. I lived on the Izu peninsula which is a resort area in Japan, renowned for its hot springs. It also has some beautiful white sand beaches near the southern tip. I lived on the side of a mountain facing into a valley which ran down the middle of the peninsula. This actually saved me from feeling the brunt of some fairly strong typhoons.
I met my wife early on, she was a teacher at the school where I was placed. Being the first person from my new home I was able to meet, we became good friends. We maintained this friendship until the second year I was living in Japan, at which time we both realized that our friendship had grown much stronger than either of us had realized, or even anticipated. It didn't take long for us to become engaged and we ended up getting married...three times. Yes, three times. We had a wedding ceremony while we were both still in Japan. Then we had a legal ceremony after returning to America. This was to
expedite my wife's immigration paperwork. A few weeks later we had another big wedding ceremony so that our American friends and family could celebrate with us.
My son, Christopher, was born in the summer of 2004. Fatherhood has been a grand adventure...well, maybe not all of it has been grand. I don't think diaper duty would fall under the category of grand. But it has been a wonderful experience overall. I will now proceed to brag about my son. Christopher seems to be a very fast learner as he is gaining vocabulary from both English and Japanese. He is just beginning to see some of the differences in those two languages, but I don't expect full comprehension for a little while yet. He is also one of the few toddlers that I know who has flown internationally three times before turning three years old, including his first flight at four-months.
I hadn't planned on taking so much time on my first entry here. I think I will leave you with a pair of simple poems I wrote in college. Unfortunately, that is the time period where most of my finished work was done. Everything else is "in the works", so to speak. We were asked to write a Shakespearean Sonnet for one of our writing classes. At the time I was knee-deep in one of the fantasy novels I enjoy so much and couldn't get that out of my head. Thus, this first little piece was born. The second piece is a musing on love poems. I'll warn you first, I enjoy writing fiction a lot more than I do poetry. I think you'll agree that the style of my prose is of higher quality than my poetic muse. Even so, I hope you enjoy
Creation and A Love Poem.


Inside my mind there lies a soul to be born.
It lurks and hides within a swirling void
Until it must arise, prepare to be
With scythe and pen this spirit I've employed.

As white through crystal prism, Spirit does transform,
And takes the shapes of legends from mystic homes.
Of elves, and trolls, and
wyrms in caverns kept warm
by magic long forgotten in wizard's tomes.

A knight will rise, a king will fall to his foe.
The hell-bound scream for mercy before the fire.
And light defeats the demons lurking below.
An epic sung by bards with their dulcet lyres.

My myth at last draws near to finished tale.
Tis now worth hearing as one drinks his ale.

Copyright by Michael I. Colwill

A Love Poem

What is a love poem?
A man writes of the unfailing beauty of his true love.
He fails to mention her unfailing ego.
Words are spilled about nights of fiery passion.
Kept jarred are the words that lack conversation.
The pen describes the gifts and sacrifices in the name of love.
No ink paints the picture of selfish secrets and adulterous lovers.
Is poetry of love merely a lie then? No.

There is hope yet to place one's heart on simple parchment,
Writing of a rainbow that has brought color to one's life,
Spilling out words of a smile bringing forth a smile,
My pen telling of efforts simply to bring a piece of happiness.
The poetry of my heart is love.

Copyright by Michael I. Colwill