Floating Metal

The cold metal handle brushes against my sandpapered chin.  Sweat coats me like a warm summer rain.  The weight pulls me toward the ground.  The drumming of life fades and focuses into the center of the orb I hold.  Sixteen times I must lower to my knees and stand.  I lock my bellybutton into my spine.  I tuck my shoulder blades into my back pockets and I lower my heavy body down.  I think about all of the things in life that are heavy burden.  3, 4.  I consider how relaxing it would be to quit.  5, 6.  I pause and drop the kettle bell on the floor.  The rubber floor welcomes the hit with a muffled thud.   “I drink your sweat, and I devour you QUIT,” it mocks me in silence.  The floor is failure, I pull myself up and away from it.   I realize that I am here, in this moment, right now, and I only need to lower one knee at a time.  Then stand up, one knee at a time.  I hold the weight close to my chin.  I place everything I am battling in life inside it.  Lost promotions, the hopes and fears of graduating with a 4 year degree at 42, my failures, my family… I load it all in.  Keep moving.  7, 8.  My body begs me to quit.  I think of the moments of the 4th quarter, the moment when losers falter and winners finish.  9, 10.  Six more.  I think about all those times I should have been writing, and I sat the heavy weight down and stopped counting.  I let that dark floor swallow me whole.  The world left silent and without my fingers dancing, telling the tale the hungry reader craves.  I take a deep breath, my shirt is stuck to my chest.  Kneel, breathe, stand.  11.  What if I took the finishing energy I have now, and study for that final. Finish!  What if I made myself sit and write, in pursuit of 1,000 rejections.  No!  1,000 attempts.  12.  I can see daylight.  I am fully inside of the moment of quit, I see the finish line.  My body hurts.  My weight falls from my chin, I pull it back.  Belly button my the spine.  Shoulder blades in my back pockets.  Back tall and strong.  Down! Up! 13.  Sweat takes flight as my hot breath grabs it.  Back down, come on.  Everything worth having in life is like this, DON’T QUIT.  Down! Up! 14.  My butt aches, my knees hurt, but I find strength in the reps lying in my wake.  Down! Uhh uhhp! 15.  Finish it…  FINISH IT!  My arms are burning.  My head is throbbing.  Am I going to feed my dreams or feed the floor?  My inner voice is yelling, “QUIT!  STOP! ENOUGH!” I take a deep breath, and close my eyes, and in that moment, I make that metal float.

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Copyright © 2019 Zachary W. Gilbert

Warm Tea In Mountain Rain

Fall wrapped itself around the mountains in a cold misty blanket.  Rain wept for the lost summer season.  Emily wore her oldest and most comfortable pajamas.  The kids had already gone into school with their rain jackets and rubber boots.  Her husband carried the soft memory of her farewell kiss to start his day.  She was finally alone.   Her eyes now caressed the items carefully placed in the home office.  A small red ball played music on the shelf.  Its black wire finding her ipod.  Norah Jones and Keb Mo warmed the air in the room against the clear cold rain tickling the window.  She took another sip of warm peppermint tea.  The sharp flavor danced with her senses.  The keyboard, and laptop conquered all of the available space on the wooden desk.  She sighed, breathing in the moment as she pulled out her notebook.   A delightful moment of writing drank her up as smooth and focused as the storm outside.

Copyright © 2017 Zachary W. Gilbert


A Writers Building

The words my soul spills, are like bricks and wood.  At first they are laid in a deep hole.  Then covered with cold unforgiving dirt.  A few more words, fall by the thousands.  The structure and composition is better, but fire soon devours them.  I build again, this time with knowledge of writing, an architect in my mind working along side my passion.  The building of my words is strong.  Someone pays me to look at it.  They enjoy the experience.  They smile, they cry, they read.  I look at my structure and I realize I can build onto my skill, better, stronger.  More words, stacking.  This time I build, tear down, rebuild, polish, refine.  Like a cathedral of my work, it is beautiful, many come.  Some love it, some hate it, but it is there to be considered.   Bricks and wood, one by one.   Finite experience is only found within the building.

Copyright © 2107 Zachary W. Gilbert


Dear Writer, about that broken pen

Dear Writer,

Sorry, that I have been away for awhile.  I have been busy on my journey to my first four year degree.  I wont be earning it until I am 41 years old.  Isn’t writing the same?  Why do writers consider failure to be permanent within one failure, and one rejection.  I tried to go to Art College in my twenties.  I learned about story, and character development, but before my junior year was over, and I realized I was spread very, very thin, I quit.  I thought my failure was permanent.  It took years for my to dust myself off and try writing.  Failure is only be temporary, if you get back up, and are perpetually trying.  Dear Writer, your readers are out there, waiting for your tale.  It may not be for everyone, but be assured, it is for them.  Your next project may be your breakthrough project.  Your next submission, might be the one chosen.  I find joy in the act of writing.  I will do so until I die.  As for my readers, I will embrace them when we finally meet.

Copyright © 2017 Zachary W. Gilbert