Friday, January 2, 2015


I thought I had picked out One Word for the year.  Standing around the flickering candles of the Yule tree last evening (secretly beaming because the children have memorized all the words of our 12-day Yuletide ritual), my One Word seemed obvious:  LIGHT.  There was my trademark quick decision, done and dusted. (This is how I found myself married the first time.)

LIGHT is a lovely word, especially powerful at this dark time of year, with many meanings in several parts of speech, and it seemed to capture the direction I need to keep going in:  a lighter grip, a lighter touch, a light heart and as much light as possible shining into my pupils (puntended).

By bedtime, though, I'd stepped back into a more practical place and realized that LIGHT was perhaps not as active a word as I need--and it certainly wasn't so pertinent to my writing life, which is where I need to put particular attention.  And I thought about how a lighter grip, how an infusion of light into the work, are what's required for good revision, whether of writing or of hasty decisions.  Other requirements for revision include patience, resting and flexibility--all areas where I could grow generally, and where my writing could benefit from less product and more persistence.  And so--in the very spirit of revision--I changed my One Word to REVISE.

Just to make sure I was on the right track, I Googled the word and found a definition which includes LIGHT--two for the price of one!
           re·vise            rəˈvīz/        verb
reconsider and alter (something) in the light of further evidence.
synonyms:reconsider, review, re-examine, reassess, re-evaluate, reappraise, rethink
I shared this decision with my spouse, who noodled alongside me, wondering about revision, envision and several other word choices, while I listened to myself do what I always do:  "Just stop with the possibilities-- I've made my choice and I'm sticking with it!  No time to consider anything else! Got to get on with it!"  The irony is exquisite... and I reserve the right to change my mind about my One Word should the light of further evidence require it.

One Word 2015

held and holding tight:
getting a grip
becomes a vice

time and again re-vise:
letting the light
in more than twice

HM 2015
all rights reserved

The Poetry Friday Round-up is with Tricia at The Miss Rumphius Effect.  Happy New Year--and New Words--to all!


  1. Thanks for sharing how you revised your one word, Heidi! Was fascinated to follow along. "Light" does illuminate "revise," doesn't it?

  2. Well done, Heidi! If nothing else, the definition you found of "revise" certainly proves your path is lit and you're headed in the right direction. Happy New Year!

  3. I rather like that you reserve the right to change, in light of further scrutiny? One year, I don't even remember the word. I should have changed it rather than quit. We do what we feel is right, I suppose. Happy New Year, Heidi. I love the way you wrote your word into a poem pertinent to the thoughts!

  4. "letting the light
    in more than twice"


    May your year be full of light and revision and beauty... Happy 2015!

  5. "Angels fly because they take themselves lightly." GK Chesterton, if my rusty mind remembers.
    Thanks for sharing your word and thought process! Here's to a year of creating and revising.

  6. Heidi, you went through quite an elaborate process for your OLW but it paid off in the end when you got two for the price of one. Your poem is the icing on the cake. On Spiritual Journey Thursday our blogging group wrote about light and it was an eye opener seeing all of the different aspects of the word as it pertains to a spiritual journey. Our OLWs take us on a journey throughout the year. I announced my OLW to be LISTEN and one of my nerdlutions as keeping TIME (deadlines and being on time are tough for me). For Poetry Friday, I created a museum-like look at the Finding Fall Gallery and an invitation to the new collection which I hope you will join as a writer.

  7. Letting in the light! Love your little OLW poem. Light was a possible word for me but I also needed a more active word. It's hard to decide but once the decision is made, it feels right. Happy New Year!

  8. Nice turn there at the end! I'm a words person, but I haven't yet been snagged by this one word for the year movement. Maybe next year...

  9. I love this story and all the nuances of meaning that you found.

    Oooh. Nuance might be a good word for next year!

  10. What a fun story about your word, Heidi. And such a beautiful poem too.

  11. Ha--you made me laugh with your exquisite irony. And speaking of exquisite, love your poem, especially that wonderful second stanza. Wishing you a year of wondrous revision.

  12. I'm always fascinated to read about other people's thought/writing process. I think you and I are very similar, Heidi, in that "got to get on with it" attitude. Thank you for sharing and reminding me of the importance of "letting the light/ in more than twice."
    Happy New Year!

  13. Dear Heidi,
    Thank you for sharing this process. It makes me feel less of a schlump for not posting my one little word yet, with a poem or few sentences about it. And I luv light - to me light includes revision, the light that comes with good revising... But since to revise is one of my joys, I am with you, liking each of them.
    And that Yule tradition sounds warm & nourishing.

    ~ j a n

  14. Now that's beautiful. Revise sharpens, refines, polishes, until you gleam. :)


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