Insta-poetry and Insta-piration

I’m sitting in the Phoenix airport waiting for my sister’s plane to arrive. We’re spending a long weekend together, living it up in Sedona with a little side trip to the Grand Canyon, a present I gave her months ago for her 50th birthday.

I’ve been so torn about this trip.

I adore my sister and absolutely don’t get enough time with her. (This will be the first time I will spend more than a couple of hours alone with her in more than 25 years.) I love the desert southwest and am in sore need of some exercise and some serious stress relief.

But I feel so much anxiety about leaving my husband.

He’s been very supportive of me going and wouldn’t even entertain any talk of cancellation or rescheduling. And I know he’s probably needing some alone time and normalcy himself. He’s tired of my fussing and worrying over him — I’m sure he is because I’m sick to death of it myself. But who goes on vacation while their husband is in chemo?

And then as I’m sitting here waiting, feeling this tension about allowing myself to enjoy anything when things are so seriously fucked up, this quote surfaces in front of me like magic.


Elizabeth Gilbert had posted it on her Instagram feed at exactly the right moment for me. Eat, Pray, Love wasn’t my thing but in general I’m very fond of her (I loved last year’s Big Magic). I have a whole collection of quotes and short poems saved on my Instagram feed.

I love poetry but do not read or know enough of it. It’s a surprisingly hard thing to dabble in. I have my favorites for sure — Mary Oliver, William Carlos William*, Sharon Olds. And over the years I’ve tried to explore more. Looking at websites, browsing the poetry section in bookstores, buying collections. But it’s been hard to find things that really speak to me. The best thing I’ve found, surprisingly, is Instagram. I’ve found three poets I really love there: Nayyirah Waheed, Yrsa Daley-Ward and someone named Atticus. I’m going to start putting these into my commonplace book.


* Oh my god, did you see the movie Paterson yet? Love, love, loved it.

2 responses to “Insta-poetry and Insta-piration”

  1. I feel the same about Elizabeth Gilbert – Eat, Pray, Love was one continual eye roll to me, but I did like Big Magic quite a lot. I also love the collection of quotes you shared. It reminds me I have a whole Pinterest board of them as well. I’ll look back through that, maybe find something for my CPB and to share here too.


  2. Also, I just remembered I used to do this poetry tumblr, where I’d just post poems every so often. It’s a good collection, I think. Maybe you’d find something there you like:


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About Me

I’m Victoria Griffith and I am enthusiastic about a LOT of things. Pine trees and mushrooms and the desert. Ocotillos, motorcycles, travel, and photography. Friendship and writing and books and surviving the love of your life’s terminal diagnosis. I blog about some of these things here, mostly about books and writing, but about the other stuff now and then too.

I was born in Paterson NJ, call Seattle WA my home, and spend the winters in the desert of Southern California. I try to get out to see as much of the world as time and money will allow. 

If you’d like to say hi, you can reach me at


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