• Creative Carnival-September

Le Carnaval de Nice - 1 : flying papers (by Aldor)

Photograph by: Aldor

This is the first in what will be a monthly event on Siona Karen's; a post reflecting and sharing on my previous months exploration. I will share with you books, blog posts, videos, films, newspaper articles etc that have inspired me, given me good practical help or have awakened my creative imagination.

I read lots of fantastic blog posts this month but three in particular stood out for me. The first was a guest post by Amy Palko on a blog called The Calm Space entitled Who Are You Not To. Amy is a wonderful writer and her own blog Less Ordinary is full of inspiring poems, photos and prose. This guest post was another example of her equsite understanding of human nature. I (like many others I am sure) often feel unworthy and inadequate and so Amy's words really spoke to me and continue to inspire me to feel beautiful and live to my full potential.

Another guest post that spoke to my inner thoughts was by Goddess Leonie on Creative Everyday called What Inspires Me. Her poetic words and the accompanying photos really sent out a fantastic message of believe in yourself, you can do it, you are wonderful. I think we all need to hear that sometimes.

The third and final blog post that I will share with you from September was another guest post, again on Creative Everyday simply called Inspiration. Bridget Benton wrote an encouraging testimony of how she keeps motivated and inspired in her creative work.

I also spent quite a bit of time reading books in September and returned to an old children's classic The Secret Garden (Wordsworth's Children's Classics)by Frances Hodgson Bennet for some easy reading. Although I had read it as a child and have watched the film many times since I found a new sense of magic in the words. The descriptions of the garden itself are captivating and here are two of my favourite quotes from the book:

"The Secret Garden was what Mary called it when she was thinking of it. She liked the name, and she liked still more the feeling that when its beautiful old walls shut her in, no one knew where she was. It seemed almost like being shut out of the world in some fairy place."

"Satiny poppies of all tints danced in the breeze by the score... And the roses- the roses! Rising out of the grass, tangled round the sun-dial, wreathing the tree trunks, and hanging from their branches, climbing up the walls and spreading over them with long garlands falling in cascades- they came alive day by day, hour by hour. Fair, fresh leaves, and buds- and buds- tiny at first, but swelling and working Magic until they burst and unfurled into cups of scent delicately spilling themselves over their brims and filling the garden air."

Another inspirational book I read this past month was Captivating: Unveiling The Mystery Of A Woman's Soul (Study Guide)by John and Stasi Eldredge. It is full of wonderful quotes as well as a thoughtful interpretation of a womens hopes, dreams and relationships with people, the world and ultimately God. These two poems are in the first few chapters and set the scene and atmosphere for the book.

You belong among the wildflowers
You belong in a boat out at sea
You belong with your love on your arm

You belong somewhere you feel free.

by Tom Petty
I want to be beautiful
And make you stand in awe

Look inside my heart

And be amazed

I want to hear you say

Who I am is quite enough

I just want to be worthy of love

And Beautiful.

by Bethany Dillon

I also felt inspired (and challenged) by a You Tube video that I was directed to by my husband. Fantastic filming of a background storyline behind really thoughtful words by Rob Bell. I think we increasingly need to be challenged about our lives in this materialistic world. Whether that is through a modern interpretation of bible passages like this video or whether it is by scientific fact proving that our consuming habits are destroying this world, I believe we need to start listening and changing.

Finally I want to share with you a beautiful poem that I read in the most recent Resurgence magazine.

If I die

I will be reborn in waves of wild flowers.

If I die

I will fly up

In cries of crane flocks piercing the purple sky.

If I die

I will return

In September days broken off

In gusts of wind dispersing burnt pages of my childhood.

If I die

My heart will begin to beat again.

In rainy drops and peals of thunder.

If I die

My prayers will sparkle as first snow

Upon dark fields and naked crowns of trees.

If I die

My look will rise

In thousands of eyes of my brothers and sisters

Scorching as a sun's touch.

If I die

I will forever remain alive.

by Vladimir Zaitsev