So they say eyes are the window to the soul, and I do believe that. But in a way, this blog is a glimpse into my own deepest desires and the motivating factors that drive my days. I often reread what I’ve written. Sometimes, if I’ve written something that is precious to me, like the story I recently shared about my last conversation with my grandfather, I’ll reread the post again and again to glean more meaning from it. It works; every day that I write in this blog is a day I gain more insight.
Often, I’m amazed at how much I learn about myself while writing. It feels like I know one set of information going into writing a blog post, and by the time I’m done I know slightly more, and then later that day or week I end up knowing even more. By writing down the thoughts and memories, wishes and fears, I’m clearing out a little space in my heart to fill with new things, and simultaneously fleshing out the picture in my mind to be even more detailed. It’s kind of like I’m shuffling information from a raw, sensitive place to a calmer, more accepting one, and filing in a few more bits of odd paperwork (notes on my current feelings, little details from observing from other angles, that kind of thing) during the transition.
So Compass & Quill means the world to me. It is a huge part of my life. But that’s not exactly what we’re supposed to be discussing, according to today’s Daily Post prompt. Instead, the directive is to consider what the external elements (design, name, structure, theme, etc.) say about our internal workings. That can be answered pretty simply, I think.
I’ve known since I was small that my life’s goal was to be a search for the Truth. Always looking for True North, as the case may be, I became enamored with the concept of a soul’s internal compass. What really made me excited about the compass as a visual concept, though, was the fact that the compass rose has eight major points (N, S, E, W, NE, NW, SE & SW). The number eight is very important to me, and graphic depiction of the compass rose became just as important as the inner, imagined compass, because of its strong connection to eight.
As for quills, I’ve also been writing for fun since I was a little girl. As soon as I figured out how to string together a few ideas in writing, around 1st grade, I started creating short stories. I wrote everywhere, all the time, even on the back of paper placemats at my family’s favorite dining spot (my placemat was for stories, while Mum’s was for playing “hangman”). I always thought that I’d become a writer one day, and I still do. Here on the blog, I’m starting to understand the old maxim, “Write what you know.” Growing up, I was a Civil War reenactor (civilian), and one of my favorite things to do during reenactment weekends was to visit the sutlers’ tents to examine their wares. Other than beautifully-decorated bonnets, for me the most coveted item was a genuine feather quill, with an ink pot. I never got one, and am really pretty awful at writing with slanted-tip writing instruments anyway, but the romance of the quill stuck with me. (In reality, I can’t live without my trusty Signo retractable gel pens.)
The design of the blog doesn’t have that strong of a bearing on my life, but what it probably does tell you about me is that I haven’t figured out how to build my own WordPress.org site yet. If I had, I’d be writing more reviews and would probably have a few relevant ads, instead of the crappy video ads that WordPress.com insists on throwing into every third post. I really hate those, don’t you guys? It would make much more sense to have affiliate ads for companies I support, like Bubble & Bee, for instance. (Bit of unpaid advertising here, if you’re always on the lookout for organic body & beauty products, they’ve got some of the best deodorants and scrubs and soaps, and I adore their lip balm).
The background of the blog is a watercolor, with early sunrise-ish colors. I suppose that does say something about me. The time before sunrise is my favorite time of day, and I’m always looking towards the horizon. The most important color that hits right before sunrise is purple, and I’m obsessed with purple anywhere. If you’ve read my About page, you know by now that I also keep another blog on Tumblr that’s devoted to beautiful purple things.
So yes, I’m a dreamer. Watercolors suit that aspect, which is probably why I collect them. I’m always picking up some new piece of original artwork by some unknown illustrator. They’re almost all freakish in some way, but not in a horrific sense, more of a whimsical one. They typically speak to me, tell my soul some story. Maybe one day I’ll write about my art collection. Or my tea cannister collection. Or my mineral collection. Or the collection of cat whiskers I’m putting together to send to a friend. I guess that’s the other thing my blog tells us – I’ve got a lot of interests, and follow all directions at some time or other.
So what have you learned about me here? I’ll tell you what I’ve learned about myself: I’m the same as I’ve always been. As much as I think I’ve been beat down by circumstances, I’m actually rather buoyant. I’m the same child who spent all summer in a tent on the back porch, reading fantasy novels. I’m the girl who wrote an A+-winning fictional expose on Trajan’s Column for a college class, because writing one more dry research paper was just too much to bear. I’m the woman who, just tonight, was attempting to envision how a compass and quill would look, tattooed, just so, on her wrist.
I believe that I’m being led to something that I’ll never find, but in never finding and always looking, I’ll still find all the pieces that make up the thing I’m really looking for. I believe that the compass and the quill are not just tools. I am the compass. I am the quill.
I also believe that it is time for bed.
G’nite, dear readers. May you find what you’re looking for on this journey, and always find yourself drifting towards your own True North.