candles, tea and the power of stories

by Anna Blanch on December 14, 2011

I watched the “stackhouse fillibuster” episode of West Wing again recently. I cried. No holds barred. When the senators asked their questions (the first in 22 parts) that allowed Stackhouse, speaking in no small way because his grandson has autism, to rest awhile without yielding the floor, I cried. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, this wikipedia article explains the episode.

I could rationalise it and saying that sometimes watching movies or TV shows provides an emotional outlet, and when I’m stressed provides the trigger for some good old emotional release…

but really, it just touched something in me, and I cried.

Stories do that to me. They move me emotionally. They make me feel, they inspire me, and they prompt dreams.

The remind me that my imagination needs to be fostered. That people have stories. That stories speak of truths often only felt.

The stories of the 16 days of action posts reminded me too, of the power of stories. These stories have a raw beauty earned only from ashes. I cried many times upon reading the words of writers willing to be vulnerable about that which has wounded them deepest, that which they have remained standing despite.

Despite typing I care about the pens I use. Yes, it is a first world problem. but it matters to me what I write with.


Very rarely these perform a utility that goes beyond making me feel safe and warm. We had a fairly wild storm here in Scotland last week. and the candles served a greater purpose. It was 3pm. which means it was dark. Because that’s how Scotland rolls in the middle of winter! Thus, the work day had not ended. I had things to do, mucho words to write.

That’s how things ended up looking like this:

 I call this, “Writing by candlelight 21st century style!”

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I wouldn’t be involved in Life:Unmasked if it wasn’t for Life: Unmaskedthis challenge and invitation  from the lovely, Joy. This post I wrote about “getting real” prompted my involvement with This Life: Unmasked. This is my eleventh post for the challenge. Here is my first: Life: UnMasked, my second, Ready or Not, my third, Is the Heart Home?, my fourth, Like Fireflies in the Night and Swallows in the morning, my fifth, This is a Choice, and my sixth, A little less of a superhero, my seventh, Just another day…, my eighth, In Control? and my ninth, The travails of my single mindedness and my tenth, marking time, marking place.

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