Monday, March 18, 2019

LIFE OF A POET ~ KAREN (KB)


Today we are visiting one of our newer members, Karen (KrazyBlonde), who blogs as KB at KB's Place. Karen lives in the very beautiful country of New Zealand, which is reeling in horror right now after the terrible shootings at mosques in Christchurch on the weekend. I contacted Karen right away to see how she is doing. 






Sherry: Hello, KB. It is good to be chatting with you. What would you like me to call you?

Karen: Hi Sherry, I am happy for you to call me Karen. My original internet name was KrazyBlonde but I shortened it to KB for convenience when I started blogging. My husband’s surname begins with B so now that we’re married my initials are actually KB.

Sherry: Karen, we have all been shocked and horrified at the terrorist shootings at the mosques in Christchurch. Do you live anywhere near where these terrible events took place? How are you doing?

Karen: I think I'm still in shock really, as the rest of NZ is, I'm sure. Nothing like this has ever happened before. NZ is made up of two islands. I live in Auckland in the North Island, and Christchurch is in the South Island, so we are far from the attacks.

Thank you for checking in on me. I don't really know what to say. I am speechless really. My heart goes out to the victims and families of this vicious attack. Steve and I are safe, but still in shock. One of the great things I always loved about NZ was that I believed it was a safe place to live. That has been taken away from me now.

Thank you all for the love and support you have sent New Zealand during this devastating time.




Sherry: We are so sorry, Karen. It seems there are few safe places left any more, given the spread of white supremacy and racism across the planet.

So now, to get to know you better, let's proceed with our interview, difficult as it is to think of ordinary things at the moment.

Tell us a bit about yourself, won’t you? Who do you share your life with?  (don’t forget any critters!) Tell us whatever you would like us to know about you and your life.

Karen: I am 50 years old; I live in New Zealand with my husband Steve, (Whitesnake). Our dear dog, Coco, was part of our lives for many years but unfortunately she passed away two years ago.




Steve and I met via a mutual friend’s blog. Steve was living in Australia and I in New Zealand. We were friends for a year before we met in person. Steve came to New Zealand for a holiday for a couple of weeks and that’s when we knew we definitely wanted to be together. It took a couple of years but we have now been together for ten years and married for six next month. Best years of my life too!




Sherry: A blog romance! How wonderful! There have been a few of those in the years I have been blogging. Smiles. Where did you grow up, Karen? When you look back, do you see anything in your earlier life that you think may have led to your becoming a poet?

Karen: I grew up in Manchester, England. I loved to write short stories and keep a journal when I was younger. I always believed I was the only writer in my family until a visit with my Grandma not long before she died. She showed me a notebook she kept in her bedside drawer and it was full of poems. I was always close to my Grandma as a little girl, but it was lovely to share that special moment as an adult.

Sherry: Oh, that is special indeed. I hope you still have her book of poems. When did you move to New Zealand? I know it is very beautiful there. It is supposed to be much like my home province of British Columbia in Western Canada. What do you love about it?


Lake Rotoiti

Karen: I moved to New Zealand with my parents and sister at the age of 15. As you can imagine, being a teenager is hard enough without the added pressures of being away from family and friends. It was an extremely difficult and depressing time for me but I consider NZ my home now and am thankful to my parents for bringing me here. 

I have travelled extensively around NZ, and it’s a truly beautiful place. I love the fact that you can experience anything here without having to travel too far; hiking in the forests, skiing in the mountains, swimming at the beach, the list in endless. The thing I love most about where I live is the people, they are friendly and easygoing. My neighbours are some of my closest friends.

Sherry: It sounds like a lovely life indeed.  When did you begin writing? And what do you love about poetry?

Karen: I began writing in my journal about my thoughts and feelings from about the age of 10 and I still do! I have always been a reader and started writing short stories of my own when I was a teenager. Poetry didn’t come until much later; I started writing poetry as a way to express my feelings at a time in my life when I was struggling to do so.

Sherry: Are there three poems you would like to share with us today, and tell us a little about each one?

A Private Ordeal – One of my first poems. I was experiencing anxiety attacks at the time so I decided to write about how having an anxiety attack felt to me.

Sometimes I feel so anxious inside
I need to run, I want to hide
It's hard to explain just how I feel
It seems like a dream yet also so real
My friends think I'm so terrible rude
I have to leave early, they think it's a mood
If only they knew just how I feel
It's not for sharing, a private ordeal
Starting to sweat now, starting to shake
I knew coming out was a big mistake
It's hard to move with the walls closing in
My heart is pounding, a terrible din
I have to leave now before they find out
Feeling quite sick, I have to get out
I wish I could tell them but they'd think I'm mad
They'd know how I've missed all the great times we had
Sherry: I know someone who experiences this, and it is very debilitating. You have written this so well.

Consequences – Finding the courage to face the consequences of leaving a destructive relationship.

Twisting turmoil
emotions run amok
feelings laid out
like an open book

Nowhere to run
nowhere to hide
some secrets should
remain inside

The prison consumes
time to break free
no-one to lean on
I must depend on me

The heart is willing
the time is now
a little faith
takes care of the how


Sherry: A poem so many of us can relate to.

Good Times –written to remind me of the good times when times were tough when Steve and I were apart

Remember the good times
They'll serve you well
When life is hard
As tough as hell

Hot summer nights
Lying in bed
His strong shoulders
Resting my head

Laughing and loving
Wasting our days
Entombed in our room
Set in our ways

You doing your thing
Me doing mine
Coming together
For beer and wine

Life carries on
Memories remain
Don't let bad times
Leave their stain



Blue Lake


Sherry: I'm glad he finally made it to New Zealand!

I notice you have an interest in health and wellness and have a blog titled KB’s Health and Wellness Journey. There are some very informative articles in there.

Karen: Many years ago I was asked to assist in managing the health and wellness section of a writing site. Writing and reading about health and wellness on a daily basis furthered my interest in the topic. My blog is about taking that knowledge and incorporating it into my life. I must say, it’s easier for me to write about that than actually do it, but I’m getting there.

Sherry: What other interests do you have besides writing? You list singing and music on your profile. Do you sing publicly, or for your own pleasure?



Karen: Give me a glass of wine and a microphone and I’ll sing till the cows come home. I also enjoy reading, puzzles, music and eating my husband’s delicious cooking.
  
Sherry: Smiles. Sounds like it's a lot of fun at your house! When did you come to the world of blogging, and how has that impacted your work?

Karen: I came to the world of blogging in 2007 as a way to express myself and communicate with others. It was a time in my life during a relationship where everything I did was controlled. I felt the only way to be myself was through poetry and writing.

Sherry: Is there anything you’d like to say to Poets United?

Karen: I love Poets United, a wonderful group of people sharing poetry, what could be better than that!

Sherry: Thank you, Karen, for allowing us to get to know you better. We're happy you found us at Poets United!

Wasn't this a lovely visit, friends? Come back next week,and see who we talk to next. Who knows? It might be you!





34 comments:

  1. And now the incident in the Netherlands. In 72 years, I have never seen such spiraling madness and pain. It is too much to take in. Clearly, all assault weapons should be banned evrywhere as a first step. Karen, you must be reeling.

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  2. The trouble with what is happening in the world today is now these attacks are becoming the norm and we as a society are becoming desensitized.
    Back to KB, what a wonderfully beautiful, caring and genuine person she is. I could marry her............ Oh bugga I did!

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  3. Lol......you are a lucky man. And she is lucky too. I agree....we say "another shooting" as if this is the new normal. Which it is, but each one devastating.

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  4. Oh, Karen, I know that Sherry had this scheduled ahead of time, but really it is uncanny that your interview came right after the tragedy in New Zealand. I love New Zealand, by the way. I visited Auckland, Christchurch, and a few other places on a cruise some years ago. I would go back in a heartbeat....i understand why you love it there.

    I appreciated the poems you shared. (1) Indeed we all get anxious sometime, and I liked that you were so honest in this one. So often we try to hide our anxiety in various ways, and it doesn't always work. (2) So hard to leave a destructive relationship, but what a relief when one summons the courage. (3) I love the memories of good times when you were apart. We have to keep reminding ourselves...sometime.

    How neat that the two of you met through the blogosphere. It sounds like you and Steve have a very nice life. I would love to hear you sing. Smiles. And health and wellness is an interest of mine too. Smiles.

    It is so nice to see both you and Steve at PU. I always enjoy your poetry.

    Ha, Sherry, nice article. You will have to think about featuring Steve as well!

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  5. It is so wonderful getting to know Karen better! A lovely poet with a lovely life! Thank you Sherry for another great interview!

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  6. I'm happy you enjoyd it, Carrie. Always so lovely to see you at Poets United. One of our very first members!

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  7. Another interesting interview, Sherry. Thanks so much for making this happen for our community of poets. Loved the poems that were selected. Karen's poetry has a clarity and authenticity that pulls you in and carries you along. Wonderful - very relatable - pieces. Great job on this, Poets!

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    1. It's my pleasure, Wendy. So happy you stopped by.

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  8. Thank you so much Sherry, it's lovely to see everything put together and you did a wonderful job. I'm off to share the linky with my friends on facebook.

    Thank you all for the lovely comments so far too.

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  9. I'm happy you're pleased, Karen, and hope your people enjoy it. Thanks so much for this opportunity for us to get to know you better.

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  10. What a great interview and such a timely one. Thank you Sharon and Sherry. After the Port Arthur massacre in Tasmania in 1996, Australia introduced quite restrictive conditions for gun ownership. I was appalled to find out yesterday that these conditions have been eased to allow some automatic weapons to be purchased. Will we never learn?

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    1. We will learn the hard way, apparently the only way human beings learn. Sigh.

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  11. I always have said that I'm an open book with a few pages torn out. Sending love to everyone there, Karen. Keep the poetry coming!

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  12. How lovely to come over here from our conversation a few minutes ago on Google+, Karen, and find you featured. Your poems are very immediate, bringing each situation vividly to life.
    I have a brother who has lived in Auckland for several decades now, but I have never managed to visit NZ. (He keeps popping back to Oz instead.) It certainly looks to be a beautiful country, judging from photos. Yes, shocking that the illusion of safety has been shattered – but I do so admire your PM for her response.
    On a happier note, lovely to read of your romance – and wow: all this AND he cooks!
    Many thanks, Sherry and Karen, for this lovely interview.

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    1. I so respect and admire the Prime Minister for her compassion and swift action concerning gun laws. That is the way to govern, sadly lacking in North America at the moment.

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  13. Hi Karen and Sherry. I remember the feeling of losing safety after 9/11--so I know what you mean about Christchurch. We are such a frail species--and such a strong one. Good for you to marry the man you love. And thank you for this poetry in which you find rhymes that don't singsong the poems out of proportion. Each is thoughtful and loving.

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    1. I love it when poets meet each other on line and get together. Wish I had found online before I was so long in the tooth, lol.

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  14. Thank you Sherry. Karen thanks for your supportive message after that horrible day. Great reading your story I already know some of it as I met you and Steve way back on writers island and formed a community with many others Some with whom we are still in touch. Keep on writing you are doing a great job

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    1. I thought of you, Marja, living as you do right in Christchurch. It is rather cool that group members are making their way here and reuniting.

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  15. Many things known from your interview.Thanks for sharing.

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  16. Congratulations Karen for being featured on Poets United. Now I know a little more about you. I'm glad that you have found happiness.
    Hugs, Julia

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  17. Thanks Karen for taking us into your world. Love the poems shared here. Thank you Sherry for another wonderful interview.

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  18. This was a fantastic read, nice to learn more about our talented KB!

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  19. What a great interview Sherry. Nice to meet you Karen and welcome. I was so sorry to hear about the tragedy in NZ and send my prayers. Your poems are wonderful and I love your blog romance story. I look forward to getting to know you here at PU.

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    1. I love blog romances too, there have been several in the years I have been blogging.

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  20. It's so nice that you found happiness and peace Karen. I enjoyed your poems. Hope you join us often and share more of your writing.
    Thanks Sherry for introducing us to Karen.

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  21. I am here for the first time and loved your post ! Yes, there is no safe place anymore in the world ! So sad !

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