Still I Rise.

Maya Angelou has to be one of my favourite poets.
The majority of her poems reflect the struggles faced by young Afro-Carribean women in a time of oppression and racism.
I particularly like this poem of hers, 'Still I Rise': I'm moving on with my life! :)

You may write me down in history

With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I'll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
'Cause I walk like I've got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I'll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops.
Weakened by my soulful cries.

Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don't you take it awful hard
'Cause I laugh like I've got gold mines
Diggin' in my own back yard.

You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I'll rise.

Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I've got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?

Out of the huts of history's shame
I rise
Up from a past that's rooted in pain
I rise
I'm a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
I rise
Into a daybreak that's wondrously clear
I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise

I rise

I rise.

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Oh heart.

If one should say to you that the soul perishes like the body,

Answer that the flower withers, but the seed remains.

I miss you.
There isn't a week that goes by when I don't think of you.

I love you so much. Always have, always will.


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Perfect Nightmare

Wallowing in the past may be good literature. 

As wisdom, it's hopeless.

Time Regained is Paradise Lost, and Time Lost is Paradise Regained.
Let the dead bury their dead.

If you want to live at every moment as it presents itself, you've got to die to every other moment.

-Aldous Huxley (The Genius and The Goddess)

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In The End

In the end what matters most is
How well did you love
How well did you live
How well did you learn to let go.

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See it's not that you ain't fine.
It's just that I ain't interested.
Yep you guessed it I'm the result of a love that never lasted cause lust was always present.

I was hoping by the way I dressed and ignored your previous attempts that it would be evident that sweet talk leaves a sour taste in my mouth and there's no substance behind the shallowness of your arrogance.

Yo-Coach gives me the impression that you think I would find it a privilege that you extended a compliment my way.
All I can say is your affirmations or confirmation's not revelations that I'm the one to be pursued--brother I thought you knew.

Yeah you're fine but good looks and tight gear won't get my time nearly as fast as a man who's got enough insight to see beyond my Coke-bottle figure and enough vision to make me believe without “priority's” not a bed buddy but a soulmate.

Time's a tickin I have no more to waste on little boys or Usher-like confessions.
But that Mac-daddy garbage you just recited: you're my carnal curse not a spiritual blessing.
Fine men before your time taught me this lesson and now I'm the one teaching you how to treat me and those young girls who are following unknown that a fine man makes them no less beautiful or deserving of
God's best
No less

I'm sorry about t
his for sounding rude


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Mistakes. (Success Tip #90)

Long ago, in a distant land, there lived two sculptors named Seb and Matthias. One day they each received a Royal proclamation inviting them to take part in a sculpting competition to be held at the Royal Gardens.
Both Seb and Matthias were extremely excited by this opportunity and immediately started preparing for the seven day journey.
Seb set out on a bright Monday morning with his chisels and hammers packed in the back of his horse-drawn cart. At the end of his first day of traveling, he made camp in a clearing by the side of the road. After a simple meal, Seb noticed a large rock on the edge of the clearing and decided to get in some practice for the upcoming sculpting competition.
He took out his tools and began to chisel away at the rock. Several hours later, Seb stood back to look at his sculpture. It was a statue of the Princess Rebecca, but while he was reasonably happy with his attempt, Seb realized that the statue’s hands were too big. He made a mental note to be careful of this in the future and went to sleep.
The next morning, Seb continued on his way leaving his statue of Princess Rebecca by the side of the clearing. At the end of his second day, Seb found another rock to practice on and created another sculpture of the Princess. This time he got her hands right but made her legs too short. He made a mental note on how to improve next time and moved on.
Seb continued this pattern throughout his journey. Each night he found a rock to practice on, created a sculpture of Princess Rebecca, made note on how he could improve and then moved on the following morning leaving the sculpture where he created it.
By the time Seb reached the Royal Gardens he had made seven practice sculptures that were each a little bit better than the one before. On the day of the competition, Seb created his best sculpture ever and to his delight, he was awarded the coveted ‘Golden Hammer’ award which was presented by Princess Rebecca herself.
Now you may be wondering what happened to the other sculptor, Matthias, so let me tell you his side of the story…
Matthias also set out on the seven day journey to the Royal Gardens to compete in the sculpting competition. Like Seb, Matthias made camp on the first night and found a large rock to practice on. He too created a statue of the Princess Rebecca but found that he made her feet too big. Matthias was angry at himself for making this mistake and the next morning he heaved the statue onto the back of his cart so that he could study his mistake later.
At the end of his second day of traveling, Matthias found another rock to practice on and created another statue. This time he forgot to include the princesses head dress and he became furious at his mistake. The next morning, he heaved the statue onto the back of his cart and continued slowly on his journey.
Each night Matthias repeated this same pattern. He created a statue, became angry with himself when he made a mistake and then loaded the statue onto his cart before moving on.
On the seventh day, Matthias woke up early and prepared for the final leg of his journey, but when he prompted his horse to get underway, the poor animal strained at his harness but could not move an inch. Matthias jumped down from his seat and went to the back of his cart.
There he found all seven practice statues of the Princess Rebecca which were weighing the cart down and making it impossible to move. Matthias complained bitterly as he looked over the statues in detail – too big, too short, too tall…the list of mistakes went on and on. The unhappy sculptor sat down on a tree stump and continued to stare at his statues for hours, and as a result, he never made it to the Royal Gardens to compete in the competition.
This simple story illustrates an important lesson that can often be the difference between success and failure. The statues in the story represent the mistakes that we all make in life. The difference between Seb and Matthias was the way in which they responded to their mistakes.
When Seb made a practice statue he made a mental note of any problems and then he left his mistake where he made it and continued on his journey. As a result, he gradually developed his skills and eventually achieved his ultimate objective.
Matthias on the other hand approached his mistakes in a different fashion. Each time he made a statue, he loaded it onto his cart and took it with him. Each day his cart became heavier and heavier until eventually it would not move at all. Instead of leaving his mistakes where he made them, Matthias carried the weight of his mistakes with him and the weight of these past mistakes eventually prevented him from reaching his real objectiv
On your journey to success, understand that you too will make mistakes. Some small, some big. Each time you make a mistake you have a choice. You can either learn from your mistake and move on like Seb, or you can carry your mistake with you like Matthias.
The danger in harboring regret and continually analyzing your past mistakes is that, like Matthias, you can eventually get stuck and can jeopardize the achievements that are waiting for you in your future.

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God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pains: it is His megaphone to rouse a deaf world.
-C S Lewis

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The Most Wonderful Man In The World

I was randomly searching for my family on Google today. This isn't the first time I've done this, but it's the first time I've gotten results!
Although I was very close to my maternal grandfather (Thatha, aka Dr Asirdas), I didn't really know much about what he did for a living, other than that he was a psychiatrist (and a pretty good one at that!). My grandma is also a psychiatrist, but she got one up on my grandad and got a PhD.
I found an article my mother had written, published in the BMJ in 1981. 
I then found two entries in BMJ Issues around 1977 which both had Thatha's name in them. I also found a research paper written by my grandma on (get this!)
"The behavioural treatment of sexual inadequacy."
Wow. Not sure I want to read that..

But FAR FAR cooler than that: a NEWSPAPER CLIPPING!
Published on page 8 of The Strait Times, on 14th September 1962, is an article about MY grandad.
AND.. he's involved in criminal psychology. Wow.
(N.B. Not the full text.)
After reading this over and over again, savoring every word and every detail, after getting over the initial excitement at seeing my grandfather's name, I began to think.

I really wish I had gotten to talk to my Thatha a lot more.

I was only 15 when he died, and I don't think I was able to fully appreciate what an amazing man he was.

From what I remember, he was always laughing, always cracking jokes with us, always wanting to love his grandchildren.
He doted on us any chance that he could.
On weekend sleepovers with the cousins, we would always make the infamous trips to Marsh's, to say hi to "Mr Marsh", and Woolworth's, to buy £5 worth of Pic'n'mix each (although he'd always let us go over!). He loved taking us to the park, and would play with us for hours whilst Amachi would be at home making her special noodles. And Thatha would always have one Mars Ice Cream pack and Magnum pack stocked in his freezer whenever we came over, because there were 6 ice creams in each pack, and 5 cousins to fight over them.
He would always make sure that he had at least one episode of "Muppets Tonight" taped for us, when we were snuggled up in our blankets in the living room, ready to go to sleep. And in the morning, he would be the first one up, ready to help us make some Bombay Toast, or to pretend he hadn't seen when we ran off to play Sonic on the good old fashioned Sega.
He was one of the funniest men I have ever met: his wit, his jokes were second to none.
I loved spending time with Thatha because he made me feel so happy: I could never be upset when I was around him.

He was the most caring man I think I will ever meet: his gentle nature but firm disposition meant he was very popular with everyone he meant.

Though I had many memorable times with him, I cannot erase the most recent painful memories from my mind.
I cannot even begin to describe the anguish and pain you feel when a loved one loses their memories, and control of their body. 
How could a man so dear to my heart not remember who I was?
How could a man I respected and looked up to so much, be in such a state of turmoil in his mind?
I couldn't understand how it was possible that this could happen to someone so kind and loving: someone who definitely did not deserve to end his life in this way.
I guess we'll never really understand why some events unfold the way they do.

Thatha, wherever you are, I hope you're looking down on me now, and I hope you're proud of the young woman I've grown up to be.
I think about you so much, and I miss your presence in our lives. 
You would always light up the room when you came in: a phrase not said about many.
I feel so blessed to have been in your life; to have been impacted by you.
I love you.

He has a face of light
And is the calm within the depth of any storm.
Gentle stranger, earth angel
without ego or expectation
Only dreams and hope for those he loves
and he loves many....
But many more love and adore him.
When our hope is lost, it is his smile,
his indifference to all fear and chaos
that opens each of us to the greatest love of all.
His love and legacy teaches us only what we should give,
not what we can take.
His inner grace is our light in the dark,
His flame is eternal.


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I am actually so scared.

It's hit me that I may not pass these exams.. there is SO much to do and so little time.

I honestly don't know how I'm going to get through this.


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Black Flowers Blossom

Don't really know what to say anymore.


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When it Hurts to Look Back, and You're Scared to Look Ahead, You Can Look Beside You and Your Best Friend Will Be There

Friends really are hugs for the heart.

I don't know what I'd do without this one.

Though we haven't known each other the longest, and right now we are oceans apart from each other, this girl has been there for me through thick and thin.

I'd like to think I've done the same for her.

We first met one morning 6 years ago, when she came in through the classroom door in a long, long, loo-oooong (yes V, you were a geek!) grey skirt. Baggy school jumper, hair plaited, glasses-wearing and carrying a lacrosse stick.
And since that day, we became the best of friends.
We're not all that similar. (apart from our taste in guys.. 'Why is the rum gone?') V's a veg. I am most definitely not.
She loved geography, I hated it.
She calls three different continents home. I.. don't.
She has a beautiful complexion - I just get lots of spots. Sigh.
She is obsessed with hummus, I hate the stuff.
She's very culturally aware, and (I reckon) patriotic - and I..... well. Lets just say much work needs to be done. 

Though she moved to India 3 years ago, and went to America last year for university, we've still managed to stay incredibly close all this time. Like the picture says, she's basically my sister

We've laughed together, cried together, laughed until we've cried together - I don't know who I would be now if I hadn't met her.
In some ways, she has made me the person I am today, and I'm so thankful that when I've needed someone to lean on, she's been there.

Despite our many differences, we go together like cheese on bread. I have had so many incredible times with V: rooming together on the Wales trip; our many outings to Oxford Street & Bond Street (waffles!); swimming in Lake Konstanz in Deustchland; pretending to be 18 so we'd get served alcohol; finally being 18 and getting wonderfully, wonderfully drunk; "Mama told me, don't be talking to a stranger"; Kookai writing!; cupcake times in the snow; BART SIMPSON; that one picture - PITS!; that other one picture - penis!; SLAM (or was it SPEED?); lessons with Lauret; fantasizing about our own Mr Darcy in English lessons; Brighton times; her surprise party and making her scrapbook; Thorpe Park (boobies!); dressing up as giant life-sized playing cards (then selling our costumes for 10p towards charity to some random kid because V made me!); sleepovers at each others houses; getting in late and having food at 2am in her kitchen... the list is endless.

I miss those times, but I'm excited that for the next five years at least, we'll get a chance to make some more memories that will stay with me for the rest of my life.

And we'll finally get a chance to complete (and add to) "The List". After 4 years! 

I love you so much V.

It's not fair that you've had to go through so much: you're one of the kindest and nicest people I know.

I want you to know I'm always there for you, no matter what.

You're one in a million, always remember that.
Don't let anyone tell you different.

Love, your sister

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So cute! :)

Just look at the video. Click on the title. Its really sweet.

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Smile, though your heart is aching..
Smile, even though it's breaking..
When there are clouds in the sky,
You'll get by,
If you smile..

Through your fear and sorrow,
Smile and maybe tomorrow,
You'll see the sun come shining through for you..

Light up your face with gladness,
Hide every trace of sadness,
Although a tear may be ever so near,
That's the time,
You must keep on trying,
Smile, what's the use of crying?

You'll find that life is worthwhile,
If you just smile...

Change is never easy. You fight to hold on. You fight to let go.
-The Wonder Years

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Shadows Fill an Empty Heart..

I'm done with this.

Ignorance really is bliss.

No matter how far wrong I've gone, I can always turn around.

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Lost for words, with all to say.

There is something haunting in the light of the moon; it has all the dispassionateness of a disembodied soul, and something of its inconceivable mystery.

Imagination electrified.

In this life, there is no light without the dark.

The chief beauty about time
is that you cannot waste it in advance.
The next year, the next day, the next hour
are lying ready for you,
as perfect, as unspoiled,
as if you had never wasted or misapplied
a single moment in all your life.

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For Your Entertainment.

So today, I was asked by one of my friends for a "revision playlist". Seeing as I am somewhat of an expert in the field of music *cough cough*, I can totally (totes) understand why she would want to ask for my invaluable advice!

I generally believe that instrumental music is the best music to revise to. The absence of lyrics means that you are less likely to be distracted from your work by thinking about the words. Instrumental music can be both uplifting and inspiring if you choose the correct type of music, however some songs which have lyrics can also be suitable if you choose them appropriately.

So here is a (carefully selected!) list I have compiled for those of you who want something to listen to, and perhaps motivate you to work!
Note: everyone is different in their musical tastes, and also in the music that inspires them and that just plain annoys them. So I apologise if these songs do not appeal to you, but I'm sure that at least a few in this list will!

  1. Enya - Only Time
  2. Enya - Adiemus
  3. Enya/Hans Zimmer - Now We Are Free (Gladiator Soundtrack)
  4. Coldplay - Life in Technicolour
  5. Lighthouse Family - High
  6. Ludovico Einaudi - Primavera
  7. Ludovico Einaudi - Divenire
  8. Ludovico Einaudi - Melodia Africana III
  9. Massive Attack - Teardrop
  10. Hans Zimmer - At World's End Medley
  11. Hans Zimmer - POTC Theme
  12. Adele - Daydreamer
  13. Pixie Lott - Use Somebody (Kings of Leon Acoustic Cover)
  14. The Fray - Cable Car
  15. John Mayer - Bigger than my Body
  16. John Mayer - Your Body is a Wonderland
  17. Regina Spektor - Eet
  18. Ocean City - Vanilla Twilight
  19. Ayo Awosika - Last to Love You
  20. Corrine Bailey Rae - Put Yout Records On
  21. Bitter:Sweet - The Mating Game
  22. Beethoven - Moonlight Sonata
  23. Boyce Avenue - Shadow of the Day (Linkin Park Cover)
  24. Emilie Mover - Ordinary Day
  25. Muse - Undisclosed Desires

That's all I can think of for now. Plus I'm really tired, and have an early morning start tomorrow, fun fun! Goodnight all :)

Disclaimer: all music in general can be distracting: theoretically you're dividing your attention between work and music, even though different areas of your brain are being stimulated.

Quote of the Day: I like living. I have sometimes been wildly, despairingly, acutely miserable, racked with sorrow, but through it all I still know quite certainly that just to be alive is a grand thing.
-Agatha Christie

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Hearts, Words & Other Forgotten Things - My Muse.

I'm cold.

I'm freezing FREEZING cold.
Wearing two layers and tights and still cold.
Should have brought my scarf, even though its almost summer.
Walking home through the dark, listening to 'OMG - Usher' on replay (seriously can't get that song out of my head. It's so good!) and I'm hoping that the white van passing me on the other side of the road is going to do just that - pass, and not stop to roll a window down while a fat perv leers at me.
Yes. Quite.
I see the familiar sight of the mental hospital approaching me, and mentally relax. I'm almost home!!
Going up the lift of the building next to the mental hospital, I ponder on life: exams, revision, music and...and oh man, I need to do the washing up. I head to the kitchen, chucking my 59p milk in the fridge and get to work on washing my dishes. In the midst of washing up plates, bowls and also my tin-opener-which-my-flatmate-"borrowed"-without-washing-up (hate it when that happens. It was disgusting!), I suddenly get an epiphany! 

I believe thats what they call it anyway.

I've enjoyed writing my blog so far, I really really have, but somehow, I'd be stuck for things to write sometimes.

Then I realised - my one main passion in life is MUSIC.

So why on EARTH am I not writing about it!?

So from now on, my blog will be focused on the music that both inspires and uplifts me. Obviously I'll be talking about other things too, but the focus of this blog is music. Whatever mood, whatever genre, whether it be secular or non-secular, good or bad, classical or modern - I'll always have something to talk about regarding music!

So I think that it's only befitting to start off with the song/album that inspired my blog title: Hearts, Words & Other Forgotten Things. 
This is the title of an album by an incredibly talented young jazz singer, called Ayo Awosika. Although she's not exactly  mainstream, she has performed in places such as California,  New York and Colorado. I believe that this is her first album out, though don't quote me on that.
There are 6 tracks on this album, my favourite of which would have to be "Last to Love You". She has a deep, rich mellow voice and an incredibly unique tone, which leaves a lasting impression on you. This song I particularly like because it talks about such a painful issue, but the accompaniment of the acoustic guitar, piano and percussion makes this an uplifting and enjoyable song to relax and unwind to. This is the type of music I often put on in the background whilst I'm revising, or needing to relax after a long day. 

If you enjoy some light hearted "feel good" jazz, then she's definitely one for you to watch. I don't think I can compare her to any other artists, because she really is that unique.

Quote of the Day: "I believe that everything happens for a reason. People change so that you can learn to let go, things go wrong so that you appreciate them when they're right, you believe lies so you eventually learn to trust no one but yourself, and sometimes good things fall apart so better things can fall together." 
-Marilyn Monroe

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You've Got Mail: Forgotten Things

So I went to meet my brother at his school to collect my glasses and scarf, which I stupidly left at home this weekend.
When he finally came to the school gate to meet me, he gave me a plastic bag and said "Oh by the way, you got a letter."

I was SO excited!! Receiving letters (which aren't just bank statements or MPA newsletters or general junk) actually makes me so happy. I know it's old fashioned and outdated but I love receiving cards and letters in the post!

And it makes it even more exciting when it's post from abroad: say, the USA for example!
My best friend V goes (well, went to) to university in America. And she decided to send me this card. 

When I opened the card, I found a picture of the two of us she had edited and added the caption "Best friends? More like sisters." to. I absolutely love it, and it now has a proud centre space on my notice board.

If anyone else feels like writing me a letter, please do!
Anyways, back to revision now.

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Exams. Again. Vent vent vent

My life right now, is one big, long, detailed colour-coded timetable.
It won't even fit onto a panoramic screen shot! 
(Ignore the "Commando!". It's part of my calendar.)

This is 5 weeks worth of revision time. Purely revision.
Not once have I pencilled in "Going Out". 
Maybe I should have pencilled in some "Procrastination" periods.

But seriously, I'm going to try stick to this as much as I can. I know it's going to be hard, especially since there is SO much to cover now (and with lectures on top of that!), but it is plausible if I just do exactly as it says. Right?

Goodbye world. For a few weeks at least.
Maybe not goodbye blog, since this will be my "creative outlet" during exam period. Yay.

I'm tempted to get one of those Countdown Boxes for the exams. But I already have one to be honest: one of my friends on Facebook is getting married the week after my exams finish. So whenever I see her status posts of "10 weeks. x" or "58 days x" etc etc it starts to make me panicky.. because its that, minus 7 days, which is how long I have left.
Which really isn't long at all.

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