Jelly Fish Tongue

Adrift in the sea
Graceful ballerinas
Effortless jetes
Elegant pirouettes
Abandoned on the beach
Parched and drying
A child pokes with a stick
My tender heart pities

For I have a jelly fish tongue
When writing it dances
Flexing with ease
But when I speak
I am marooned on the beach
Parched and drying
I poke it with a stick
Alas, it freezes

Header Photo: a snap I took of jelly fish in the aquarium at Noumea. I could have watched them all day. They are so graceful and haunting in water, so sad and ugly when high and dry on the beach.

It reminded me of the difference between my ease of communication when I write, and when I speak. Everything kind of jams up and curdles in my mouth when I talk. The more excited or inclined I am to impart something – the less ease I have to do so.

I’m a terrible gusher. I have to be careful not to speak over the top of others, mindful of my words and tempo. I admire those who are great orators. What a wonderful skill. I don’t possess it. I work best with a keyboard to hand in wish to work through.

When I found writing, I found my ballet shoes. Or maybe my tap shoes. Not straight away, but eventually. Does anyone else feel this way I wonder? Surely I am not alone in being a jelly fish tongue.

But I do try not to sting 😊

Heading home. At top speed, a gentle rock and roll going out here on the high seas. As much as I’ve enjoyed myself (immensely) and the company of my niece Courty, and my time learning more of the craft – I am looking forward to going home, the feel of the earth beneath bare feet and the brush of my dogs as they run beside me.

22 thoughts on “Jelly Fish Tongue

  1. Your jelly fish metaphor is a good one for me. I have a really hard time communicating vocally. My brain stops working and I struggle to find the word I want. This problem has gotten much worse with time. At one point I tried to figure out if there was such a thing as adult onset autism spectrum disorder. It’s probably more related to the fact that I no longer drink. Conversely, I’m much more comfortable writing to someone. It’s nice to go back and edit those passages that don’t flow. I Miss home too when I’m on vacation.

    • Your writing is very smooth Jeff, I always enjoy your posts. I think my brain thinks and types fast, so talking is too slow and everything gets jumbled up and jammed. Yes, I’m ready to go home now, tomorrow and a long drive and I’ll be there

  2. such a beautiful post and title; I love that sentence: when I found writing, I found my ballet shoes; my dread is public speaking, that’s when I’m the jellyfish on the beach —

    • I hear you John. I did some slam poetry for a season. It took so much rehearsing to recall my own poetry smoothly. I did it to get over my fear of speaking and also because injust wanted to try it. I was able to get through it those few times but my preference is definitely the written word.

      • I tried slam a few times; did okay but not among the finalists; what I really enjoy is reading my poems out at poetry readings or to small groups; I did a reading once for a Book launch of my new poems to over 300 teachers at an English conference; but like you, it;s writing and sharing I enjoy πŸ™‚

      • Oh you did well. 300 is a lot of people I hope you sold a few books as well. Reading is fine for me. It’s when I have to string the words together without a guide to mean on when I can become a little lost. They don’t behave themselves and cram to the front of the queue 😊

      • hahahha; well put; yes I sold over 100 books ; I did another reading to an English Teachers’ conference a few years later when it launched ‘Yield: a practical guide to poetry writing’; mostly I read poems — mine and students —

  3. Yes, I absolutely feel that way too. When I write, it just feels right. It’s what I was meant to do. And I can express myself so much better through writing than I can in any other way.

  4. Love the analogy of finding your ballet/tap shoes when you found writing. Beautiful and relatable writing. For me, it depends… on the topic, on the group/audience, my mood, etc.πŸ˜†

    • True – there is a bit more to it than just speaking – I can certainly speak, shutting me up at times is a problem πŸ˜‚ when I find it frustrating is in the moment of trying to explain something important or that I am passionate about

  5. Yes yes yes!! I too have jellyfish tongue!!! I’m so clumsy vocally, always saying the wrong thing or not finding the right words. I write so much better than I speak! You are not alone!

  6. β€œ0h could I relate to this post! I have often found myself saying β€œThis would make so much more sense if I could just write it to you.” I loved your line β€œWhen I found writing, I found my ballet shoes”. Beautifully said! That is EXACTLY how I feel. Thank you for finding such an eloquent way to explain this πŸ™‚πŸ™‚πŸ™‚

  7. Reading your post and your comments, too, Kate, I am relieved to be amongst fellow jellyfish tongues. I have the same problem. I can write exactly what I want to say; sometimes too much, but I’m learning to right slightly shorter posts for the sake of my readers. Speaking is another matter entirely. I either end up tongue-tied, or everything falls out at once, usually too quickly, too loudly (which isn’t like me), and stumbly (if that’s a word). I have to try to refrain from speaking over someone or jumping into the conversation too quickly. None of this is a problem when I’m writing, except that I write too long comments on people’s blogs! I love how you describe learning to write as finding your ballet shoes – beautifully put. Xx πŸ’•

    • Hahaha I love your comments Ellie and my responses sometimes too run away on me. I’m glad the post resonated and you make a wonderful point about how the comment section adds and enhances the post itself.

Leave a Reply