The Gazeebo

A Poet's Place

The Gazeebo – Catching Up

Hey all (again)!!

Two posts today – only because it took me SO long with the last one (still unsure why).

Anyway, so in the nonfiction class, we’re doing a memoir piece. And you know what? I do memoirs all the time, and I didn’t totally know it – in my poetry with my looking back on my past, I have been writing a form of memoirs! 🙂 Do you guys realize how exciting that is for me?? A few days ago, I was stressing out because my financial aid hadn’t come in, and I couldn’t afford to get my book until my book advance (FINALLY) came in, and I had no way of reading the chapter on memoirs in order to figure out how to write one – or so I thought! Of course, a memoir via prose writing is a BIT different than writing a poetry sort-of-memoir, but still! The entire concept isn’t totally backwards and different, so I’m happy to learn that!

In regards to the book, “Teacher’s Pet, and Other Fun Names,” it’s going to take a very interesting take on what a memoir is, in the terms of it looking back on memories (most of them will be mine), however it will be written more about a separate person who happens to have similar memories as me. I hope that jumble of information made sense… To be more specific, it’s going to be a book about someone who will be very similar to me, who will also interact with people who are very similar to people I’ve encountered in my life (without it being me or the people I’ve come across in order to protect myself and others). So, like I had said – a kind of memoir, but extremely different from the regular memoir you might come across. And, in learning about the workings of a memoir and how to write one, I’ve learned more on how to bring out the emotions within the memories in order to make the book just that much better, and more powerful of a piece to write. I’m definitely interested in looking into this concept more, as I continue the writing process of the book! 🙂

Anyway, I think that’s all.

Have a good day! 🙂

September 7, 2013 Posted by | Your Lungren Originals | , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Gazeebo: Continuing to Learn

-Originally began August 30, 2013-

Hello again! 🙂

I’m back for another post regarding my experiences, in relation to the dive into creative nonfiction while writing my book! 🙂

But first, a little bit of an update on my life – I have just recently gotten a new job (as of the second week of August) for Chase Bank as a Customer Service Specialist in the Mortgage Department where I work in a call center (or as I like to call it, “Cubical City”). Slowly, but surely, I’ve been learning the ropes; all the policies and the procedures, how to work with certain systems and programs in order to effectively and efficiently look up a customer’s account and be able to answer any general questions they have regarding the account. It’s been a fun learning experience, but I have definitely grasped on to the desire to actually write (and teach Creative Writing as a college professor) for a living. It will take time, but it will be worth the effort – so I’m excited for what will eventually be 🙂

Anyway, in regards to the title I gave this post; I continue to learn every day that there are a lot of really awesome people out there. I have had friends that I have made within the past few months say things that I’d have never expected anyone to say. For example, my friend randomly told me that I look like Chris Evans (the guy who plays Captain America – and, at an earlier point, another Marvel character, Johnny Storm aka the Human Torch) due to the general facial features. To add to this, both him and another friend of ours, stated that my eyes are really pretty. I didn’t agree with the whole Chris Evans thing, and the eyes compliment is totally an opinion thing; I think they look like just regular average eyeballs, but everyone has a right to their own opinion. Another couple of my friends stated the other day that I looked very GQ with one of my pictures on Facebook, to which I honestly was lost on the reference at first until one of them explained what GQ is (magazine – I’d highly suggest doing an image search and you’ll understand). I’m hesitant to agree with the GQ statement as well; don’t get me wrong, I love the compliments and how nice these people were to offer them, but I just have a hard time accepting compliments.

I find it extremely difficult to focus on the better qualities about me, because I don’t believe too many of them exist.
-edited and added to post September 7, 2013-
It’s not that I agree with what was said to me by the kids who liked to focus their time picking on me, but I have to paraphrase something a comedian John Mulaney has said – “8th graders are the meanest people in the world…they get at the things that you don’t like about yourself.” For me, it was more than just 8th graders, but nearly every bully I ever encountered. One of the biggest things that they bullied me for was for being overweight; this is something I’ve tried my whole life to get control of, but (as I’ve said in the past) people were voluntarily ignorant of this and they continued to poke, which had caused me to eat more as a comfort food and thus gain more weight.

Now, I’m meeting people who are complimenting me, and I don’t always know how to take compliments, but I’m learning day by day to just accept them for what they are. And I’m also learning that there are a hell of a lot more nice people out there than I ever knew when I was younger. And in terms of writing my book “Teacher’s Pet, and Other Fun Names” (along with other nonfiction-esq. ventures), I’m learning that there’s another level that I can add with what happens after the bullying ends – a realization, an “eye-opener” to the kinder breed of people out there.

Not sure why it took me so long to finish this post – I guess I wasn’t sure how to put what I was thinking to words..

Have a good day! 🙂

September 7, 2013 Posted by | Your Lungren Originals | , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Gazeebo: An Introduction to “Teacher’s Pet, and Other Fun Names”

I have recently started a Nonfiction class with my college, and one of the assignments every week is to do a blog post (awesome, right??), so you’ll begin to see much more posts from me again!! 🙂

So, here’s the post! I hope you enjoy! Continue reading

August 24, 2013 Posted by | Your Lungren Originals | , , , , | Leave a comment

The Gazeebo: Starting the Climb Again

Hey everyone! Not sure if anyone still reads my blog, but if you do, I’d love a comment or a like for this post. If you do have something to say, I will be more than happy to reply! 🙂

Anyway, earlier this month, I went into a dip again (which basically is me going into a depressive state). If you have been reading my blog, you probably remember me saying at least something about me having been bullied in my life. Well, one of the after effects for me is dealing with dips and a whole roller coaster of emotions (I’m pretty sure I’m bipolar, but I’ve never been diagnosed). One of the ways I deal with it is by writing pieces like this that I’m posting here for you today.

On another quick note, in relation to my emotional state and writing, I’ve started a book that shall be titled “Teacher’s Pet, and Other Fun Names.” It will be a semi-autobiographical novel, where I will be writing in a point of view where I’m telling the reader about the main character (who will go through several similar experiences in relation to bullying that I went through), as well as about other characters who will go through various bullying experiences. Also, I’m going to be focusing on the main character in relation to the after effects of bullying, because this is a subject that is often ignored or just not observed by those doing research, despite it being a legitimate issue in the lives of several people who have been bullied.

Due to me writing about other characters’ bullying experiences, I invite you to tell me your story via a comment below or via an email to jmcdlungren@yahoo.com. There’s a pretty good possibility that I’ll include it into my book if you give me permission to do so (though if you do, I don’t want to use your name, so I suggest you also tell me three different names that you’d like for your character to be called). Thank you! 🙂

Anyway, here’s the poem, and if you like what you see, I invite you to click that subscribe button, follow me on Twitter (via the link on the right, or find me: jmcdlungren), and/or maybe even like my page on Facebook (via the link on the right, or find the page entitled Jesse McDowell Lungren). 🙂

Continue reading

May 26, 2013 Posted by | Your Lungren Originals | , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

The Gazeebo: A Time of Mourning, a Moment of Silence

Hey all!

I felt that I needed to take a moment of silence while writing this piece in order to let people heal a little bit, but in this time of mourning, I also feel the need to get a little bit of a feeling of love and caring out so people definitely don’t feel alone as they deal with the tragedies of the explosions in Boston and the fertilizer plant over near Waco. This poem doesn’t really touch on Waco, but the overall sentiment that I wanted to get across is no less significant in relation to Waco.

Anyway, here’s the poem. I hope you enjoy! 🙂

What Good is a Day; Hold Them a Little Tighter

Jesse McDowell Lungren

What good is a day when you find feathers

lying on the ground, blood spattered

while Spring petals fall?

 

I woke up today,

What seemed a rather ordinary day.

Checks to pay taxes were in the mail,

and so was the package for my sister –

She turned 19.

I stepped outside to notice more buds had bloomed; pretty pink, yellow and white. As I came back inside to peruse through the activity of friends, a question caught my eye –

“What happened in Boston?”

The response – at the finish line of the Boston Marathon, two explosions went off leaving at least

2 dead, 17 injured,

2 dead, 23 injured,

2 dead, 21 injured,

2 dead, [ ] injured.

 

And I think, what do the numbers matter, when innocent lives are lost? What do they matter, when innocent people are hurt as they go about their lives? At the end of the day, everyone is affected; the ones who had the hate in their hearts to commit atrocities, the ones who will never breath again, the ones who lost their limbs, the ones who will not be able to un-see or stop hearing what went down, the ones who rushed to the scene to help, the ones who donated blood for the victims, the ones too far away and unable to help. And I think about the families who will never see their family members again; they will never be able to say “I love you” or hear it from them again, they will never be able to hear the stories they had or watch them make their own stories, they will never hold them tight and tell them everything will be alright. And with that, I think about my own family and despite the fact I sit here writing this now, I love them with all my heart and I try and make sure I show them every day; and I think about every person I’ve ever met, how despite their feelings or their actions toward me I wish them the best in life, how every friend, crush, bully, and acquaintance that has passed through my life is more important and significant alive than dead any day and how I would never wish the latter upon them. And I think about “Hello Herman” and the hope to end violence by just treating people a little nicer; what a wonderful sentiment, how in the subject of a school shooting, though the in-show protests involved and some of the comments within focused on guns and the effect of video games, the show’s defining message did not. And I hope that if more school violence occurs, people decide to finally listen to those who did the crime; though what they did will always be horrible, at least then maybe the public will finally know that there’s a hell of a lot more to anything than what is seen and assumed on the surface. And as the events of April 15, 2013 in Boston play out, I would like to hope that those who rushed in to the scene to help stop the bleeding of those who lost their limbs and those who continued to run after they finished their marathon to go donate blood are remembered more than the criminals involved.

 

Above all, my wish for humankind is to just treat people a little better; whether you barely know them or know them more than anyone, treat them like they count and they matter in this world because everyone does. And I also wish that everyone who still has someone to hold, you take a moment every day to hold them a little tighter, and tell them you love them because life doesn’t wait for these moments to happen and any day can suddenly be too late.

© Jesse McDowell Lungren

April 20, 2013 Posted by | Your Lungren Originals | , , , , | 1 Comment

The Gazeebo: Hello Herman

Hey all!!  I’ve been pretty busy lately with ushering for a show called “Hello Herman” over at my college.  It has some pretty intense subjects regarding bullying and school violence, among others (a show that I wouldn’t recommend to children).  Well, here’s something (that I’m not sure if I can legitimately call a poem) that I wrote due to some feelings that came up in relation to the show:

[UNTITLED]

Jesse McDowell Lungren

Hello, my name is Jesse – also known throughout my life as Jessica, Fatso, Nerd, Teacher’s Pet, Freak, Wimp, Snitch, and Tattle-Tale.

Also, I’d like to introduce you to a few people who themselves have survived years of bullying, emotionally, physically, and verbally.

Have you personally ever been bullied, or experienced any school violence?  Have you ever been made fun of for your weight and when you tried to fix it, you made a step forward and then, as the bullying continued, two steps back because, outside your parents who were unable to help you, the only comfort you had was the food that caused you to become overweight?  Have you ever tried going to a teacher or had a parent or friend go to a teacher?  Have you experienced what happens when you do – the counseling, the fact it’s never anonymous, how no matter how hard you try to make it better, it just gets worse?  Are you willing to spend a day in the shoes I had to wear for twelve and a half years – going to school at the age of five to just learn and make friends and instead get tormented by people who didn’t know any other way how to treat people, get treated like you’re a loser, and then get ignored by almost everyone else, and then finally being able to go home and escape it all, try to be happy and talk to your parents about it all, and then cry yourself to sleep every night?  And then, after those twelve and a half years, are you willing to deal with the fact that you don’t know how to deal with the most natural social interaction without feeling uncomfortable, deal with a rollercoaster of emotions that go along with depression, and then walk down the street with the constant feeling that people are watching you and judging you.  You say, “just wait, you’ll be the boss of all of them when you grow up” or “it’s fine, you’ll find friends – it just takes time” or “do ‘this’ and ‘that,’ and it’ll end.”  Put on my shoes, you do all that bullshit – you try to “just wait,” you try to go do “this” and “that,” and then survive it all.  Then and only then, you can call yourself an expert; because until you go through the shit and change things for the better, you can go fuck yourself.

For us all, we’re experts in our own way – because we all are able to stand up and try and help those who are being bullied, while still being very awake and accepting of the fact that there’s no clear answer to stopping it – in fact, there’s no answer to a lot of questions regarding being bullied because every situation is unique.  But, at the end of the day, we’re still standing here for when you need a shoulder to cry on, a hug when no one else will offer, a willingness to catch you as you’re falling, and a hand up if you’re unable to get up on your own.

© Jesse McDowell Lungren

April 5, 2013 Posted by | Your Lungren Originals | , , , | Leave a comment

The Gazeebo: March 26, 2013: A Day of Reckoning

Hey everyone!

So yesterday at work, I’m pretty sure a drug deal went down .. O.O .. it’s kind of become a “just another day” kind of thing, but it still gets me on edge a little. No guns involved from what I can see (and for that I’m happy) – just two cars parked directly next to each other and with the smell of marijuana present whenever nearing the area to sweep up trash. Oh the things I have encountered and witnessed as a fuel station attendant…

But, I digress – now, in relation to the title of this post:

As of next week on Tuesday, March 26th, the US Supreme Court will see the case that was once known as Perry v. Schwarzenegger, and that is now known as Hollingsworth v. Perry. The original case was a lawsuit against the state of California’s Proposition 8 which revised the California State Constitution with a provision saying that marriage is restricted between two people of the opposite sex; the lawsuit and the resulting verdict stated that such a law was unconstitutional, citing violations of both the Due Process and Equal Protection clauses of the US Constitution. The case that the US Supreme Court will hear on Tuesday is an appeal of that original case, now being the other party hoping to successfully argue that it’s not unconstitutional.

** The Supreme Court will also see another case, known as United States v. Windsor – a lawsuit against the government involving the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). To save myself from copyright infringement, if you’d like to learn more about this case as well, check out this site. It’s just as important as Hollingsworth v. Perry, I promise you!

In the wake of the US Supreme Court agreeing to hear the cases, several people have spoken out for marriage equality, with congressmen on both sides of the isle, including President Barack Obama, calling for Proposition 8 to be struck down. There have also been some, including the president, calling for nationwide marriage equality through a Federal law, if not also an amendment to the US Constitution.

And here’s my opinion – strike down Prop 8 and legalize marriage equality! You see, marriage equality doesn’t just mean gay marriage; it means all the rights, taxes, etc that go into getting married.

And in saying my opinion on this, I have to call out various arguments that are made against marriage equality:

  1. The Bible says it’s wrong – who cares? Whether you’re an average God-fearing man, a priest / reverend, or the Pope, you are neither God nor Jesus so quit acting like you are and quit judging everyone. That’s His job, not yours. Oh and to add, this being the United States of America where there is a separation of Church and State, and we’re talking about a law relating to this issue, your argument is invalid.
  2. Traditional family – open up your eyes people; there are gay couples everywhere that are engaged and / or in a civil union / domestic partnership with kids; marriage equality isn’t going to change this. Also, unless someone proves that the kids aren’t being treated properly, and it is the responsibility of the parents (whether the parents are gay, straight, single, married, etc), the kids stay under the guardianship of the parents. To add, a traditional family is a man, a woman, and kids that were born with the genes of said man and woman; so, if you’re going to fight for a traditional family, then you might as well protest orphanages and sperm & egg donors because they break the traditional family as well. My point: get over yourself and focus on your own traditional family if those are your views.

I honestly can’t think of any more non-discriminatory arguments, so I’ll just stop there. If anyone feels like adding one that isn’t discriminatory in the comments section, I invite you to do so.

I think that’s about all for this post. Have a good day people!

– J.McD.L

P.S. if you liked what was said here, go ahead and click that subscribe button, “like” my page on Facebook, and maybe even follow me on Twitter! 🙂

 

** Edited March 26, 2013: Added information on the DOMA Case (United States v. Windsor)

March 23, 2013 Posted by | Your Lungren Originals | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Gazeebo: A New Year, 2013

So, obviously I haven’t been on here in a while, but here’s a poem I just finished today (Monday).  I have a handful of others that I’ve already written, and am about to write that I need to post as well, but in the mean time, enjoy this one.  It’s involving things going on in my life, along with various events around the world, such as the Arab Spring that I described and mentioned without actually naming… well, enjoy! 🙂 Continue reading

January 29, 2013 Posted by | Your Lungren Originals | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Gazeebo: Another Battle Won

So, last night, it rained a little with lightning and thunder and I suddenly felt the need to write a poem this morning.  So, here it is!! Continue reading

July 12, 2012 Posted by | Your Lungren Originals | , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Gazeebo: Beginning of Summer

So, summer is starting, the official start being June 21st though here in Arizona, it started some time in May. 🙂  Anyway, here’s a poem that I started last semester in my poetry class and just finished up today. Enjoy! Continue reading

June 12, 2012 Posted by | Your Lungren Originals | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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