Transformation – A Tanka Poem

Transformation

poetic transformation
dances through pages flowing
faster and faster
thunderstorm of uncut words
in truest form of expression
soul center emerging through the light

This poem is a Tanka, another form of japanese poetry, that is restricted by syllables per line, which is 5-7-5-7-7 . Basically it is an extended haiku, with two extra lines of 7 syllables.
Still inspired by the images of thunderstorms, and their power – maybe this is related to the fascination and connection I feel to the deity Donar (Thor) of my ancestors –  I chose the image of his counterpart in Japanese mythology,  God Raijin, which is besides the God of Thunder also the God of Agriculture. He is often seen with drums surrounding him (the sounds of the thunder). He is an original Shinto God, also known as kaminari.

A Daily Prompt Dinner Party And Then Some

Today’s Prompt is fun, so I thought I go for it:

You get to plan a dinner party for 4-8 of your favorite writers/artists/musicians/other notable figures, whether dead or alive. Who do you seat next to whom in order to inspire the most fun evening?

I can picture them well together – the band Thirty Seconds To Mars (Jared Leto, Shannon Leto and Tomo), Joss Whedon, and the guy who knows them all, Robert Downey Jr. Somehow this sounds like a fun, but slightly dangerous evening, as neither of them are what you would consider “normal”, all have the attitude of not caring about people’s opinion, and are imensively creative. A group of dedicated, creative geniuses, that have inspired me to dream, to dare, to write and to not care about what others think. I can not imagine that there will be much sitting still, therefore assigning someone a particular place to sit would be a waste of time. We would end up on the porch, outside, all over the house, engaged in conversation, rather than stationary. None of these people are the subtle, stationary type.

Of course the dinner would have to be made by a hired gourmet vegan chef (Jared is vegan). While my husband is an exellent cook, don’t ask him to cook vegan, so hiring someone in has to be it. Plus it leaves us more time to connect with this group of incredible people.

Here is what fellow bloggers thought about this particular prompt:

http://abozdar.wordpress.com/2014/07/12/hanging-out-with-the-cool-crow-dude/

http://guthonestfaith.wordpress.com/2014/07/13/the-living-dead/

http://abozdar.wordpress.com/2014/07/12/tryst/

http://alanewart.wordpress.com/2014/07/13/musical-musing-dead-alive/

http://tombalistreri.wordpress.com/2014/07/13/declining-dinner/

How would you answer this weeks prompt?

Five Books You Should Read This Summer

Over the last few weeks I have come across quite a few gems of new arrivals, that you should not miss out on. Isn’t there something wonderful about reading on a hot summer day? To fill those days, check out the following fiction and non-fiction books, that are worth your time:

1. The Keepers by Rae Rivers – my absolute favorite new paranormal romance series this year!

2. Touched by Darkness by Catherine Spangler – another paranormal series, that is sure to keep you wanting for more!

3. Parker’s Passion by Sabrina York – now there is a hot one for not the not faint of heart! Steamy!

4. The Snow Queen by Linda Wisdom – a book that does not leave you cold. Perfect for a lazy Sunday afternoon!

5. Manifest Moment to Moment – because not all summer reads have to be pure entertainment.

Which books are you planning on reading this summer? What is your absolute favorite so far?

 

The Cop – A Flash Fiction Story

Grieving families. My personal nightmare.
And I am a part of their nightmare.
I have to poke into their lives, dig deeper then anyone would like me to.
Really, I do care.
Still, I have to do my job.

It is not my fault, that I uncover mistresses and secret bank accounts.
I am aware of the dilemma an no longer hidden drug problem will be for the family and with your friends.
Yes, I am sorry to hear, that the man in the bag, being driven away,  is someones father. Someones friend.
It touches my soul deeper then I will ever share with anyone, and definitely not with you
.
Even my wife, and absolutely not with my children.
Keeping a brave face for their sake.
And for yours.

Never-less, the scars this and every death leave upon my soul, are deep.
They wake me from each sleep, never restful, always disturbed.
Nightmares of tangled bodies, and the ability of human disdain of one another.
How can people be so cruel?

Yet, between the wanting to drown your and my sorrows in the bottom of a whiskey bottle, I return.
I always return.
Because someone has to.
Someone has to clean up, make sure that at least some of those scumbags will be locked up, away from you.

So I return.
Again.
Tonight.
My badge and gun always in reach.

But the question remains.
How can I survive another death?

Copyright Claudia H. Blanton 2013-2014

This story was originally posted in one of my older blogs before moving over here to the wordpress platform

Book Review: Parker’s Passion by Sabrina York

Book Review: Parker's Passion by Sabrina York

Title: Parker’s Passion
Author: Sabrina York
Publisher: Sabrina York
Publishing Date: May 4th 2014
Rating: 4/5 Stars

Finally an erotic romance that is not trying to imitate the 50 Shades of Grey. An enjoyable, steamy read, this book is an easy to devour novel for those who are looking for romance, but don’t mind the physical. Falling into one of the better books in the genre, this books only downfall is that it seemed a little rushed, but the characters are charming, the story line has not just action that contains itself in the bedroom, and it is sweet, with the happy ending every reader will be rooting for.
A hot book for a hot day.

The Keeper – A Flash Fiction Short Story

The Keeper - A Flash Fiction Story

The scent of cinnamon cookies rushed through the hallways and grand entrance, that was still grand despite its need of TLC, lots of TLC.
“She likes you”.
“Who likes me?”I was bewildered. With no one in the family left but me, there was no one to approve of me, or disapprove.

Finally

Free from the stuffiness of what was supposed to be for my own good, but had felt more like a lifetime prison of rules, regulations, tradition and expectations. 

“She does. The house, silly.”
I glanced at the young woman in front of me, as if she just had grown a third eye, not the psychic kind, a literal one, bulging from the center of her forehead. Or maybe alien antennas. I had known that the girl was weird, had been told to stay away from her, but I did not expect a bubbly young woman with a sense of purpose, and self-confidence, I wish I had. I liked her from the moment I first saw her. Even if she did not make sense to me most of the short time, since I had arrived.
“The house likes me?”
“Yes, she approves of you. Only when she likes someone does she smell like that.”

She laughed at my expression, a mixture of confusion and disapproval, and waved me further into the entrance.
The white marvel floors where exquisite, and despite the need of touch ups, updates and a dire need for wall paint, the home was beautiful. Overwhelmed I forgot for a second how crazy the caretakers words sounded and took a deep breath, breathing in more of the welcoming sugary, cinnamon scent.
“This is really mine? All of it?”
She nodded excitedly.
“All yours.” She giggled, hugged me quickly, another habit of hers, I had the feeling I would have to get used to.
“You have no idea, how much fun you two are going to have! She is a special place, precious. And now you are her Keeper.”

Copyright Claudia H. Blanton 2014

This post has been inspired by the Daily Prompt post.

Here are few more post of other Daily Prompt bloggers:

http://alanewart.wordpress.com/2014/07/08/reviving-bricks-come-down-and-jam/

http://jitterygt.wordpress.com/2014/07/08/warren-and-the-psychologist/

http://aerretha.wordpress.com/2014/07/08/barbie-y/

http://dragoneystory.wordpress.com/2013/04/10/the-world-i-would-create/

http://agirllikemee.wordpress.com/2014/07/08/my-dream-mansion/

 

Book Review: The Life You Left by Carmel Harrington

Book Review: The Life You Left

Title: The Life You Left
Author: Carmel Harrington
Publisher: HarperCollins UK
Publishing Date: June 19th 2014
Rating: 3/5 Stars
“Sarah, I’m not coming home tonight.
If you love me, you will give me the space I need…
Tell the children I love them.
Paul
It started out like any other day for Sarah Lawler; getting the kids ready for school, making the pack lunches and juggling baby Ella’s feeds.

There was no way of knowing that her husband, Paul, would leave for work that morning and simply not come home.

Now the questions are piling up quicker than the unpaid bills and, unable to answer her children’s questions about where their Daddy is, Sarah is getting desperate.

But it turns out she isn’t quite as alone as she thought she was. When her beloved childhood friend, Edward, comes back into her life, Sarah thinks she’s finally been thrown a life line.

There’s just one problem with Edward: no one else can see him.

Edward is an angel. And he has a message for Sarah that will change her life and the lives of others forever. For it is only in the most difficult of times that Sarah can discover how strong
she truly is.

Set in a small coastal village on the beautiful Irish coast, The Life You Left is a story of redemption and the strength of love.”

An interesting premise, but the story is nothing special. While the characters are not awful, they are simply boring, from the main character Sarah Lawler to the Angel Edward. There is not much excitement in the book. It reminds me off one of those really lazy Sunday afternoons, when before having kids, we had nothing to do, and time to watch those movies that were on TV, just to keep from being too bored. The book did not excite me at all, but was not the worst thing I have read ever, it was simply flat, like those Sunday afternoon movies. With so many enticing volumes out there, this one had a premise that could have been built on. The thought of an Angel story got my attention, only to leave me wondering if there would be anything happening, that would exit me. It did not. HarperCollins has some really interesting romance and paranormal romance books to offer at the moment, this is not one of the better ones.

Book Review: The Keepers: Declan by Rae Rivers

Book Review: The Keepers - Declan (Book 2)

Title: The Keepers: Declan (Book 2)
Author: Rae Rivers
Publisher: HarperImpulse Paranormal Romance
Release Date: June 12, 2014
Rating: 5/5 Stars
“You lied to me, misled me, attacked me,” Declan murmured, dipping his head toward hers, “but what we had three months ago wasn’t fake, was it?”

Kate’s gaze faltered to his lips, heat pulsing between them. But she didn’t deny it.

Declan Bennett has zero tolerance for thieves. He and his brothers, the Keepers, are fiercely protective of their witch, Sienna, and their privacy.

So when Kate Carrigan breaks into their estate, he’ll be damned if he lets the little wildcat get away with it – especially after she seduced him three months ago, leaving him buck-naked in a New Orleans hotel. Declan wants payback – and some answers.

Before she was murdered, Kate’s mother ingrained it in her not to trust anyone. Kate’s magical powers make her a pawn in the war between good and evil, a war she’s always avoided. Declan is everything she’s been taught to fear, even if she can’t forget the memory of his touch that one night…

Trouble is brewing as the powers of evil regroup – bolder and hungrier than ever – and Kate is forced to choose a side.”

What you just read was a snipped from the second book on the paranormal romance series – The Keepers. I have been looking for a while now for a good series to sink my teeth into, while I am waiting for my favorite author (Kay Hooper) to continue with her series. And with The Keepers I have found it, and more.
Blown away by the story that grabbed me from the beginning and never let me go, I enjoyed “Declan” immensely. This volume had been my introduction to the series, never having heard of Rae Rivers before – which is a shame, as she is an incredibly talented Author who without much fluff manages to entice the reader into a romantic paranormal story, that has more than enough action, and not just the relationship kind. Set in a back drop of where Witches have real powers, and Keepers to protect them from those who mean them harm, Rae created a world that is enticing, powerful and believable.
As soon as I had finished this book, I went to download the free sequel, (available for Kindle on Amazon for free, yes free), and enjoyed it just as much as I did this book. I am hooked. Rae Rivers is on the very few Authors whom I am calling my absolute favorite.

Abandoned – America’s Vanishing Landscape – A Review

Book Review: Abandoned

Title: Abandoned – America’s Vanishing Landscape
Author: Eric Holubow
Publisher: Schiffer Publishing
Publishing Date: Sept. 28th 2014
Rating: 5/5 Stars

“For a relatively young country, America is rich in decaying ruins that cover its landscape. Through his striking photography, Eric Holubow provides a glimpse inside these perilous structures to reveal the slow but unforgiving wear and tear that has befallen many of the country’s forgotten sites. What transpires is a surprising, yet undeniable beauty beneath the rubble and decrepitude. Centered in the Rust Belt, but spanning from coast to coast, north to south, and big cities to small towns, breathtaking images of nearly a hundred sites, including factories, churches, theaters, prisons, and power plants, signify the comprehensive erosion of important parts of our history. Holubow’s compelling work forces us to pay attention to formerly grand, significant landmarks and institutions that have long been ignored, and reminds us of the tragic fate that they and everything we know eventually share.”

A compelling look at the ruins that are scattered around a country, offering a glimpse of broken dreams, history, in a society that loves the largeness of design, but is willing to abandon it with a totality that is surprising. What struck me the most are the images that showed the sign of abruptness, such as the leaving behind of work boots in the ruins of a factory, or the school books still placed in perfect order on the shelves of an abandoned school. Inviting us to imagine the stories of these places, Holubow captures the rawness of these buildings in his striking images with an impressive clarity. If you are a fan of photography, check out this volume.

Book Review: Dark Child by Adina West

Dark Child - A Book Review

Title: Dark Child
Author: Adina West
Publisher: Pac Macmilan
Publication Date: June 1st 2013
Rating: 3.5/5 Stars

“Lately things have been getting weird for pathology technician Kat Chanter. She’s been craving raw meat, and having dreams so realistic they’re scary. When she accepts a job offer from the prestigious Hema Castus Research Institute, she hopes she’ll have the chance to discover what’s wrong with her, but instead, her move to New York thrusts her headlong into a treacherous hidden world, where the wrong move could be fatal . . .”

Promised to fans of The Mortal Instrument Series, as a book worthy in comparison, Dark Child begins to deliver that promise at first, placing its main character Kat Chanter into a intriguing story of self-discovery, and realization that nothing she believed to be true indeed is.
Introducing us to a series with major potential, the pacing of the story begins as it should, not too fast, and not too slow, making the reader fall in love with the character, and her story. But after a little more than a third of the book, it begins to feel rushed, and while the story is good, solid and interesting, it does not take its time as much as it in my opinion should.
I am a fan of fast paced books, but there is such a thing as trying to squeeze much into a small space. Right at the end, it regains its rhythm and allows the reader to enjoy the story once more to its potential.
Overall a good book, that could have with some minor changes been a very good book. I am looking forward to reading more from Adina West, sensing that once she finds her pace and strategy, even better novels from her will come our way soon.