Demittere Diem: A Writer Wednesday Post

December 10th, 2014 | Posted by Irene in Essays | News | Publication News


Pennsylvania SkyPennSky, unretouched photo & all text ©Irene O’Garden 2014

To listen to this post, please click here:Demitterre Diem

The other night I suffered a thigh cramp. A real howler–when muscles gang up on each other and each, in defense, grips all the harder.

Sucking deep breaths, can’t answer awakened, anxious husband. Bending, leaning, rotating. Coaxing, begging the leg, which snarls and defies like a mad dog.

Isn’t this over yet? Stop. Stop. And it won’t.

In spite of the eternity pain stages, it doesn’t last forever. Eventually our flailing finds alignment.  Try good leg. Foot ankle thigh take weight. Shift to ailing limb. Acceptance! It is relieved by the weight, glad of normalcy and, in its sheepish canine way, apologizes for its lapse of muscular sanity. 

I’d vigorously exercised these muscles earlier.  Shouldn’t they be tired and want to sleep? Yet, as body will, they’d been mirroring my frame of mind.

For I’d been pumping my muscle of accomplishment just as vigorously. So much to do, to see, to create: Christmas cards, gifts, errands, visits with friends and family, making house sitter arrangements, having contractor meetings–all clamored to be done. (We’re having substantial renovations in the next several weeks and are traveling while the workers sling their power tools.)

Carpe Diem (Seize the Day) is the very motto of our age, and has inspired me plenty. But, our thighs remind, if we seize non-stop, we seize up.

So here’s my little corollary:



(Let Go The Day)


Returning to a daily taste of yoga helps me do same. As does looking at an retouched sky like the one above. After all, the vigorous and mighty sun does it every night.  With style.



***Please Note: After more than two and a half-years of weekly posts, I’m taking my first real hiatus. I anticipate being back in the Wednesday saddle in late January, but will rely completely on my intuition for the timing. Have marvelous holidays!***


Publication News: People who are wondering how to buy a copy of the gloriously photographed “Connecting: Celebrating the People and Places of the Hudson Highlands” (which contains my essay on the arts)  can click here. If you’re in the area, the book is also available at Boscobel’s Gift Store (Garrison), the Garrison Café (Garrison), Storm King Adventure Tours (Cornwall-on-Hudson), Hudson Highlands Nature Museum (Cornwall) Jones Farm (Cornwall) and at the Putnam History Museum (Cold Spring)


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  • Laura

    OUCH! I feel for you. As always, the cramp episode was beautifully written…and no evidence of that other plague of literary endeavor- “writer’s cramp”. You will be sorely missed!

    • IreneOGarden

      You made me laugh with “writer’s cramp!” Didn’t even see it coming!
      Thanks as always, Laura and I will miss your piquant observations. Adieu ’til next year!

      • Debra Griner

        Uplifting and inspiring as you are….you will be missed. I love reminders of what’s important in life and you always provide them. Thank you, Irene.

        • IreneOGarden

          Debra–Thank you so much for your warm thoughts–it always means so much to have such as sensitive heart as yours reading–Happy holidays, dear one–

  • Scott

    Yesterday I did a Demmitere Diem myself and let go of unfinished tasks so that I could get to the gym. Today’s blog is extremely important and I’ll be clinging to the term over the next few weeks. There are incredible sunrises still left to see and I must find them. If I don’t find them, I’ll close my eyes and imagine this beautiful photo of PennSky. I’m wondering if it occurred in Pennsylvania.

    • IreneOGarden

      So glad you took that important time for yourself, Scott–and yes, it is a Pennsylvania sky– I saw at a sunset birthday party earlier this year! Have lovely travels yourself!

  • giom

    …the mind and the body are not always willing partners…but of course… separation is simply unthinkable!…blessings dear…and hydrate…and make sure you eat bananas…giom

    • IreneOGarden

      Thanks so much, dear giom! Good suggestions all!

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