The Musings of a Boho Girl

bōˈhēmēən (noun) 1. a free spirit ; 2. a writer; 3. an explorer of the Avant-Garde.

Tag: writing

The Act of Remembering

‘Time Remembered is Grief Forgotten’
– Algernon Charles Swinburne

I have faint memories of the 1980s. I remember my clumsy attempts at roller skating and can vaguely recall seeing Ronald Reagan on television; perhaps the latter is an invented memory. The 1980s marked the beginning of uncertainty. I wasn’t part of the fear, loss, and tragedy that occurred; in fact I remained largely unaware of its cause. There was a silence around death, no one wanted to say how they died and some doctors chose to list underlining symptoms rather than the actual cause of death. I spent six months writing an elegy to the 1980s, the years that I was blissfully unaware and too young to understand. There were protests. People were fighting for their lives. I want to remember the protests but I can’t; those faces are ghosts now. Victims to a disease that the government refused to acknowledge. All of the documentaries never prepared me for the profound loss that began in the early 1980s, for the first time I couldn’t fill the blank pages with words, traces of death lingered in my notebook, and then there were my fragmented memories…memories that defined my story. There was only one question to answer.

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Missed Connections

Embed from Getty Images

 ‘I love my rejection slips. They show me I try.’ – Sylvia Plath

Rejection is a painful reality but why not have a little fun with it, so I decided to rewrite rejection letters as vignettes. Please enjoy my missed connections with literary agents.

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Remnants of The Yellow Wall-Paper

Joan Didion, author of

Joan Didion, author of “Play It as It Lays”, and “Slouching Towards Bethlehem”, is pictured here on May 1, 1977.(AP Photo)

“It is the strangest yellow, that wall-paper! It makes me think of all the yellow things I ever saw – not beautiful ones like buttercups, but old foul, bad yellow things.” – Charlotte Perkins Gilman

It’s odd how dreams are conceived and misplaced. Joan Didion’s first novel, Run River, was published in 1963; it’s the same year Sylvia Plath killed herself. Sometimes I think of how Plath’s dreams must have disappeared the day she decided to end her life and at the same time, somewhere across the Atlantic, Didion might have been reading proofs with notes from her editor; she was looking forward to realising a dream as someone else’s ended. I wonder how dreams die so suddenly, beyond the mental illness, something happens in society that breaks us. How did Didion avoid rejection and self doubt? Maybe she hid it beneath the cool girl aesthetic or she was stronger than the others? Plath didn’t live long enough to create the narrative she would have wanted. Culturally Plath will always be framed as the wronged housewife and poet who struggled to divide her time between writing and caring for her young family. Feminists often cite her as the victim of domesticity. Plath became a martyr for the feminist movement and many view her poetry is a symbol of the domestic struggle.

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On Rejection and Self Doubt

Last weekend I found myself binge watching House of Cards Season 3 and nursing the pain of a fresh rejection slip. Don’t worry, I’m not going to spoil House of Cards for all of you. If you haven’t watched yet, enjoy.

So I don’t handle rejection well, it leaves me questioning everything about myself and then asking the question, am I good enough? As I attempted to answer that question, I spoke with several friends in multiple countries about our ‘happy place’. So here we go. Read the rest of this entry »

When Things Fall Apart

My tears are like the quiet drift
Of petals from some magic rose
And all my grief flows from the rift
Of unremembered skies and snows.

– Dylan Thomas

Ophelia 1851-2 by Sir John Everett Millais, Bt 1829-1896

I told myself that I was not Ophelia. Admittedly those are strange words to tell one’s self, but society makes me question whether I am her. Do I lack autonomy? We really only have so much freedom, it is, after all, reduced due to financial circumstances and employment. Those two factors are often linked. Without means how much autonomy really exists? Feminist critics often state that Ophelia lost her identity, but I don’t believe she ever had one. Her sole purpose was to marry well and elevate her family in society. While modern society has changed so much about our identity hasn’t, titles and connections are still important. They make the difference between getting a job or having your interview cancelled days before you’re scheduled to leave for New York City. Read the rest of this entry »