Madhu Bazaz Wangu | Blog
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Writings and Readings Blog

Madhu Bazaz Wangu

Two Poems

  One March Morning Outside my window this morning, I heard a red robin sing.  Did I see the song?Did I smell the song?Did I taste the song?Did I touch the song? I wore the red song.Spread my wings, andsoared the sky. I saw the seas and the land,against the blue sky.I saw the fragile earth. Back on the firm ground.I felt “more than” a woman—a human.   Writing Pleasure Simply write!Do not speak of writing.Do not speak of publishing.Do not speak of other people’s writing.  Read ravenously, voraciously.Unravel your knots in spontaneous words.Move your senses inwards by sitting still.When body, heart and mind are one,flow streams smoothly.  Other writer’s success or failure does not affect you.Profit or loss does not touch you.Praise or criticism does not ruffle you. Derive pleasure solely from writing.Feel admired and honored by the Self.Write, simply write!...

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Inspiration and Stillness

Dear Readers, My illness though banal left me in no mood or strength to post New Year Greetings. So today, please let me wish you a belated Happy New Year! The months of January and February passed by in a flash. I was neither quite sick nor wholly well. Watery eyes. Runny nose. Dripping fluids weakened my sense, made my thought process incoherent No fever. But the dry cough refused to leave me until the end of the second month. After four weeks of cough syrups, nose spray, cold tablets and inhaling steam three times a day I got my normal health back. But looking back I would rather not complain about two months of common cold. Many things were revealed to me during my illness that I could not have envisioned in health. (Except...

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DEFINING MOMENTS & LESSONS LEARNT by James Robinson

A number of defining moments have shaped my life such as my marriage, the births of my children and grandchildren. Equally important are the defining moments of my writing life. The moments that "I chose (this path) and that's what's made all the difference." (Robert Frost) One such moment happened when-after our family's annual trek to Hilton Head Island in 1994. I promised myself to begin writing in earnest. I began by writing about mid-life. I had a lot to write about. My body, at the tender age of 40, was starting to betray me. My buttocks sagged. My favorite pair of jeans became ill fitting overnight and so on. I had a book's worth of material. I tentatively titled the book Fighting Mr. Gravity. Pretty silly, right? I queried to agents...

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You Are Never Too Old to Write

As we grow older our writing process may slow down. Our short-term memory may not be as sharp. Spelling may elude us at times. But we are constantly aware if we want to complete a book of our dreams we must write daily. We cannot procrastinate. And when we finish a piece and see our work in print what an exhilarating experience that is! James Robinson, this month's guest writer shares his experience of starting to write rather late in life in his piece, "Defining Moments and Lesson Learnt." (See Writing & Meditation Page) You are never too old to start practicing mindful writing. Those moments when your heart is overflowing with feelings and thoughts simply bring out your notebook or laptop and begin. Write as long as you can keep...

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FINDING A SAFE PLACE by Eileen Enwright Hodgetts

"Wisdom is like a fire; people take it from others" (East African proverb)   I joined the Mindful Writers Group in 2012 just before the group went on its three months winter hiatus. I had attended only three meetings and looked forward to the Spring 2013 when the yearly session was to start. I had no idea if I would really feel at home writing in a room full of people and food (although the food was definitely a bonus). But now that I know and understand the group mindset I find it a very fulfilling experience.   The Group is an interesting exercise in trust and acceptance. Perhaps some of the writers know each other outside of the group but I do not. Yet I come eagerly every week to sit...

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Another Mindful Writer

It is my pleasure to post the mindful meditation and writing experience of yet another Mindful Writer, Eileen Enwright Hodgetts. She joined our Wednesday meetings more than a year ago. (Please see "Finding A Safe Place" on Writing and Meditation Page) Eileen says, 'as far back as I can remember I always wanted to be a writer.' When she worked part-time (1985 to 1999), Eileen wrote plays such as Titanic to All Ships, Phoebe and the Steel City Vampires, Whirlpool the Musical, For all the Saints and a number of one-act plays. As a playwright she won the Pittsburgh New Works Festival Award, and numerous national awards including Best New Play from Theatre Americana. The latter was awarded to her for Titanic to All Ships about the senate hearings into the...

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India: A Wonderful Weave

It has been two weeks since I returned from my trip to India. Distance of a decade from the country of my birth made it possible for me to observe it as an outsider.  I wondered, was I born and brought up here? So I just looked and breathed it all in. Years of my previous experiences as a young woman resurfaced as I soaked in the sights, sounds, smells and local foods. I felt saturated with the sensuousness, consumed with warmth of the people, their love. The colors, the art, the music, the ethnic food bursting with flavors revived my senses, made me feel alive. So hard to describe the experience! The month divided itself into three segments. First, the research for my second novel in the villages of Deorala...

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CANDY By Gwyn Cready

My grandmother used to read me a story about a girl who was given a magical box of candy. As long as the girl ate no more than two pieces each day, when she woke up the next morning, the box would be full again. But if the girl got greedy and ate more than she needed, which of course she did, the box would lose its magic and never refill itself again. I can think of no better metaphor for the joys of this world. If we can give up our need to dictate the terms of our joy-the amount, the timing, the flavor-we will find all the joy we could want without even looking for it. We need the red leather sandals with silver buckles, but we find unexpected joy...

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Transmuting Tragedy

Transmuting Tragedy Into Romance The day Gwyn Cready, our guest writer this month, joined the Mindful Writers Group, her poignant face and somber demeanor intrigued me. There was something about her that I felt connected to. What was it? Then last July at our one-on-one meeting, I asked her what inspired her to write romance novels. 'Death of my younger sister when I was 34,' Gwyn said. During our conversation, at certain moments, her eyes welled up. An outpouring of emotion, a floodgate of forgotten memories opened in my heart. A sorrow dormant within Gwyn stirred a latent emotion inside me. I too had lost my brother in my mid 30's. My 38 year-old-brother, my mother and my father passed away within eighteen months. Life seemed meaningless. Numbness enveloped me. When my sensation...

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A Month In India

On the morning of 5th September 1987, as I was going through the card-catalogue of Hillman Library at the University of Pittsburgh, a friend (also a student of world religions) informed me that a young Rajasthani woman had committed Suttee in India. A day before, an eighteen-year old woman named Roop Kanwar had immolated herself on the pyre of her dead husband. The ritual was witnessed by thousands of townspeople.  Stunned and speechless, my lead laden legs felt cemented to the ground. At that frozen moment the seed of a book was planted in my mind. But the seed stayed dormant for decades. The incident continued to sear like a wound at the back of my mind. Yet I was not emotionally ready to write about it. All these years I trawled...

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