‘Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
All mimsy were the borogroves, 
And the mome raths outgrabe. 

“Beware the Jabberwock, my son!
The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!
Beware the jubjub bird, and shun
The frumious Bandersnatch! 

Sometimes when I’m overwhelmed I quote lines from Jabberwocky (in my head, of course). I read it so many times that I can quote it line by line. I call upon it when needed.

It helps me remember that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. We can find meaning, and we can create meaning, even in the midst of chaos. There is melody. There is magic.

When I’m overwhelmed I also find myself making more and more lists.
I list things that I must do:

  • Schedule a doctor’s appointment (general check up)
  • Renew my driver’s license
  • Schedule an eye exam
  • Get the car inspected

I list things I should’ve already done:

  • Get an oil change
  • Father’s Day gift
  • Send the wedding gift to Nikki
  • Call Chicago folk

I list goals I have yet to accomplish (i.e. start):

  • Save $10K by June 2018
  • Invest $5K by December 2018
  • Monthly 5K runs with V & the fam
  • Improve health/wellness

I list books I’ve bought but haven’t read:

  1. Drown, Junot Diaz
  2. Say You’re One of Them, Uwem Akpan
  3. There Was a Country, Chinua Achebe
  4. The Other Wes Moore, Wes Moore
  5. The New Jim Crow, Michelle Alexander
  6. Just and Unjust Wars, Michael Walzer
  7. Americanah, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
  8. The Power of Habit, Charles Duhigg
  9. Long Walk to Freedom, The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela
  10. Born to Run, Christopher McDougall

I organize, sort, wash, dry, plan, and fold.

He took his vorpal sword in hand;
Long time the manxome foe he sought–
So rested he by the Tumtum tree 
And stood awhile in thought. 

And, as in uffish thought he stood,
The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame, 
Came whiffling through the tulgey wood,
And burbled as it came! 

I started writing consistently again. I created a rough outline for the week and modified my old system. In the busier times, I create the titles only and then brainstorm ideas for images. While I’m commuting to/from/during work, I hash out the highlights, important points, and key themes. In the evenings when I get home, I fill in gaps, edit, and revise.

More water, fewer Cokes.

Pacing. Discipline. Impatience.

One, two! One, two! And through and through
The vorpal blade went snicker-snack! 
He left it dead, and with its head
He went galumphing back. 

“And hast thou slain the Jabberwock? 
Come to my arms, my beamish boy!
O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!
He chortled in his joy. 

‘Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe: 
All mimsy were the borogroves, 
And the mome raths outgrabe.
(Lewis Carroll)


2 thoughts on “Day 4, Week 26: Jabberwocky

  1. I like your writing strategy, prewriting in your head. I like your emphasis on daily writing. I can definitely see how it creates stream of consciousness, flow and fluidity in your writing. Love it.


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