Pis, Parties, & Passings

Happy Pi Day!

Happy Albert Einstein Birth Day*!

Happy Stephen Hawking Life Day!

 

*Apologies, the video is from last year.

 

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Journey Delayed Due to an Inclement Life

If you live long enough, the chances are pretty good you – your faith; your hopes; your dreams – will be tested. There is no way to predict what your test may be – the possibilities are infinite – but the results are always the same: life changing.

Mine came in the form of life-threatening illnesses.

Author Lucille Anderson’s came with the washing away of a life of love and comfort when she lost her business, her father, and her marriage. I strongly encourage you to visit with Lucille to learn more about her test, her testimony, and the lessons she has to share at her website and in her newly released book Habakkuk: The Cry of Crisis the Song of Victory

Life in 3-D Coaching

My definition of being lost is not knowing how you got  where you are, and how to get to where you want to be. That is where I found myself over ten years ago –lost. Oh, I knew that I was making some wrong and some bad turns, so, I can’t completely say that I didn’t know how I got  where I was. But, I’m the victim here, so I don’t have to take responsibility for my part in this, yet.

Just to remind you, or if you are just catching up, these are the circumstances that I am speaking of. In August, 2004, I gave up on trying to keep my business open any longer after a 14 year -successful run. The man whom I was married to walked out two months later (mmm, I wonder if there was a connection). Oh, yes, and I lost my dad in…

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HOW NOT TO DIE: In 13 Easy Steps

On this day five years ago, I received the news that a recent lung biopsy showed that my lungs were inflicted with a severe form of graft versus host disease (GVHD) called bronchiolitis obliterans syndrome (BOS). BOS, I came to find out, was a known but uncommon side-effect resulting from a bone marrow transplant (for leukemia) that I had had earlier in the year. And by severe I was told it meant the BOS was incurable, non-reversible, and, in most cases, aggressively fatal. I was also told — because I had asked and insisted on an answer — that, according to a National Institutes of Health (NIH) study of the time, BOS had only a 13%, five-year survival rate. In other words, there was an 87% chance that within five years I would be dead.

Well, it’s been five years and here I am – a newly minted Thirteen Percenter.

Can a brother get a “Hell yeah?”

Hell yeah!

Anyway… at my most recent appointment with my oncologist, in addition to his standard declaration whenever he sees me of, “So, I see you’re still alive,” he also declared that my present condition may just be a miracle of sorts because it appears that my incurable BOS may have actually been cured… somehow.

I don’t think I would be overstating if I said that, because of all my goings on these past five years – goings on such as leukemia, GVHD (and not just of the lungs, but also of the eyes, liver, and intestines), prednisone side-effects, cytomegalovirus (CMV), and heart failure to name a few – I think I’ve learned a thing or two about life in general and living it in particular.

Now, if you search around this site, I’m pretty sure you will find that much of my writing, mostly encapsulated in my haiku, reflects a lot of the insights and learning I’ve garnered from these goings on. However, just because I like you all so much and don’t want you to have try to sift through this site for days on end in an effort to discover these insights and learning, and because short, pithy lists are all the rage these days, I will identify for you the top thirteen things I learned about how to not only not die, but mostly about how to best live your life filled with happiness and meaning, regardless whether death is looking you directly in the face or not.

Cool?

Okay, so here we go…

Continue reading “HOW NOT TO DIE: In 13 Easy Steps”

Tangled

Tangled
 

blossoms and decay
from rose to a tangled rot
such is this, our lot

#boo

 
 

Volume IV Selection for the Indie Author Book Selection & Review

You may have heard that Dr. Wayne Dyer has died.

And you may have seen several of my posts where I discuss how much Dr. Dyer has meant to me over the recent years.

And you may have noticed that I often referred to him, this man who has meant so much to me and whose wisdom and guidance I so heavily relied upon, as the Greatest of Gurus and as my own Personal Pope.

And you may be aware, if you, too, are an admirer of Dr. Dyer, that he did not regard death with fear; instead, he looked at death as an opportunity for our everlasting soul to expand out of and away from this material, finite vessel we call our body, and return to and within the infinite and everlasting Soul of the Single Song (aka, the Universe (uni-verse – get it?)… Or something to that effect.

And you may understand, then, why I am a bit conflicted. One the one hand, I celebrate the release of Dr. Dyer’s Soul back into the infinite wild of its original and natural habitat. While on the other, me being a normal, irrational human being who can’t escape his Ego, ergo, he can’t escape his damning Desire nor his fear of Death, I am very bummed that he is no longer here on Earth, in his aged and deteriorating vessel of the human kind, being all sagacious and wise and a bit more than slightly goofy.

And you may predict, and rightly so, that, because of all this, I would want to try find ways to stay as close to the Essence of Dr. Dyer’s broad and deep Message and Meaning.

And you may realize, had you an opportunity to look over the submissions for this volume of the Indie Author Book Selection & Review, that several of the books are closely aligned to Dr. Dyer’s out there way of thinking.

To be honest, had Dr. Dyer still been with us, I probably would have selected G. N. Boorse’s DON’T TOUCH THE GLASS. Not only do I love the cover and his website and his write-up on the back of the book, I was also ready to read something as edgy and obscure as his book sounds. See, as advertised down below at my #Amreading widget, I #amreading Maupassant’s ALIEN HEARTS. And it’s all about (too much so) love and the psychological implications of infatuation. In other words, I’m having a hard time finishing it. And it was because Boorse’s book seems to be completely opposite from what I am now reading that I was planning on choosing his. That and, to be honest, I was also intending to choose his because, even though I occasionally write it, I rarely read poetry or abstract writing, such as K.D. Rose’s appears to be (it’s all too hard for my feeble mind to grasp), nor do I read, despite my affection for Dr. Dyer, “New Age” (for a lack of a better term) or self-help books, such as Avril Meyler’s appears to be.

But now, as things stand, the kind of books submitted by Meyler and Rose are exactly what I am yearning to read.

And out of the three books (two by Meyler – A MULTIDIMENSIONAL PARADIGM and A NEW HUMAN) and one by Rose – HEAVY BAGS OF SOUL), I am selecting for this volume of the IABS&R A NEW HUMAN because it looks to be the closest in content to what it is I want rattling around my brain right now.

I want to thank so very much all three authors for their submissions. I am very honored and humbled to be in such a position. And just because only one book has been chosen for this exercise of a literary contest of sorts, it doesn’t mean that I won’t read and review the others. I truly intend to do so.

Now, I’m not sure when my review of A NEW HUMAN will be posted – I still have to finish my current read, as hard as that may be, and review it (it was my intention to review it anyway – we’ll see…). Regardless, I will try to get things expedited and completed the best I can.

Again, thank you to G.N. Borse, K.D. Rose, and Avril Meyler.

And thank all of you for allowing me to use this opportunity to express my love and appreciation for the life and work of Dr. Dyer. May he enjoy all the infinite and everlasting heavenly rewards he so greatly deserves.

Peace.

 
 

A World At War Just Like It Was Yesterday: HAWSER – A Review

BOOK | FICTION | LITERARY
HAWSER by J Hardy Carroll
RATING: ★ ★ ★ ★

To one who considers some of his favorite literary works to be those about World War II – SLAUGHTERHOUSE FIVE and CATCH 22 being the obvious ones – the war seems to be very present for me, when in fact it is now eighty years in our past. With it now so far removed from us, and with the space filled in by so many countless other wars, it really is quite an accomplishment that author J Hardy Carroll was able to bring the period back to us in such a vivid and entertaining way.

HAWSER, our selection for Volume 3 of the Indie Author Book Selection & Review (IABS&R), is a finely weaved, fascinating tale of Hawser (don’t bother asking him his real name) as he recounts his time as a B-17 bombardier during the Allies’s bombing campaign against the Germans.

We meet Hawser in a prisoner of war camp and it is from there he recounts for us all that has happened to him in the war before that point. We learn how he washed out as a pilot to become a bombardier, how he had to abandon his unit because of a murder, how he was abandoned as a child, how he met his arch nemesis, how he became trained in subversive warfare, how he became an expert bombardier, how he became burnt out and disillusioned by the war, and finally, how he tragically became a Nazi prisoner. From there we pick things back up from the present time in the story and we go along with him until the book’s conclusion.

Within that very rough sketch that I just laid out of the novel, there are so many – too many some may argue – different plot twists and sub plots filled with suspense and murder and love and passion and discovery and deceit along the way that several times throughout the course of my reading the book I had to stop to marvel at Carroll’s ability to manage it all so seamlessly and with such intrigue, all the while bringing out some of the larger and more poignant lessons learned from the war: mainly of the incalculable death and psychological and material devastation that the war wrought across the entire globe, as well as teaching us – or reminding us – that war isn’t always honorable and that not all people go to war to be heroes…some go to war simply because they want to kill.

And I was equally impressed with all the military and war jargon with which Carroll was able to flavor the story. It it his description of the B-17s and all their guns and ammunition and flight formations, and his knowledge of England during the war and its pastoral settings and its pubs and its quirky dialects that truly bring the story to life. Now I don’t know how much research Carroll had to do – my guess is a lot – and I don’t know how much of the detail he writes in the story is accurate – my guess is all of it – but I don’t really care. I don’t care because it all seems so real and so accurate that it significantly enhanced the story’s ability to pull me into that zen-like space of blissful verisimilitude.

In the end, the only flaws to be found with the book are in its ambition and achievement. At times the sub plots pull back the tempo of the story and I never really felt that there was that one thing, that one element of the story that had enough heft to bring an immediacy, an urgency of discovery, from the beginning to the end of the tale. But I see that more as a good problem for an Indie Author to have, as it is always better to have too much material to work with than not enough.

So I say congratulations and thank you to J Hardy Carroll for writing such a powerful story that both entertains and reminds us just how much effort and expense throughout history we silly humans have invested in our seemingly never ending quest to kill and conquer each other.


Hawser

jhardycarroll.com

 

~~~~

RATING SYSTEM:
★ = UNREADABLE
★ ★ = POOR READ
★ ★ ★ = AVERAGE READ
★ ★ ★ ★ = OUTSTANDING READ
★ ★ ★ ★ ★ = EXCEPTIONAL READ

 
 

Untitled no. Zero

it doesn’t matter
it doesn’t matter
it doesn’t matter

but it does

it doesn’t matter what is heard
it doesn’t matter what is seen
it doesn’t matter what is felt

but it does

it doesn’t matter what is read
it doesn’t matter what is studied
it doesn’t matter what is learned

but it does

it doesn’t matter what is wanted
it doesn’t matter what is needed
it doesn’t matter what is neglected

but it does

it doesn’t matter what is played
it doesn’t matter what is worked
it doesn’t matter what is earned

but it does

it doesn’t matter about sex
it doesn’t matter about abstinence
it doesn’t matter about monogamy

but it does

it doesn’t matter about the laughing
it doesn’t matter about the crying
it doesn’t matter about the ennui

but it does

it doesn’t matter about the mind
it doesn’t matter about the heart
it doesn’t matter about the soul

but it does

it doesn’t matter about peace
it doesn’t matter about war
it doesn’t matter about surrender

but it does

it doesn’t matter about right
it doesn’t matter about wrong
it doesn’t matter about indifference

but it does

it doesn’t matter about purpose
it doesn’t matter about meaning
it doesn’t matter about truth

but it does

it doesn’t matter about belief
it doesn’t matter about non-belief
it doesn’t matter about un-belief

but it does

it doesn’t matter about was
it doesn’t matter about is
it doesn’t matter about shall be

but it does

it doesn’t matter about birth
it doesn’t matter about life
it doesn’t matter about death

but it does

it doesn’t matter
it doesn’t matter
it doesn’t matter

but it does
and just it doesn’t matter

 
 

Meet me in the courtyard where the blood no longer flows

You and I sipping tea
wrought iron stylish in ancient design
umbrella faded to blue just so
violet clematis
climbing
reaching
divine
but hiding sins etched in walls
which leaves us sacred in our time

 

bodies marched out lined up
backs against the brick
against the wall
so to speak
confessional sins
then onward to die

ready…
aim…
the anxious burn before the fire…

wall too high for them to climb
still they try
leaving nails of desperate death behind

 
 

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If I Were A Samurai

If I were a samurai
I would know

when to bow
and when to ignore
when to speak
and when to be silent
when to eat
and when to fast
when to think
and when to meditate
when to advance
and when to hold
when to strike
and when to parry
when to kill
and when to die

 
 

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