Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/profile/blog/howellbard3
Rated: E · Book · Writing · #2044345
Writing about what I have been reading and encountering in the media.
For those of you who have been following, you may have noticed my absence. I was ill with lymphoma. I am now well and typing away. Thank you for taking the time to check in. I hope you find something interesting.

Previous ... -1- 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 ... Next
May 11, 2022 at 11:27am
May 11, 2022 at 11:27am
My friend, Bruce Carr, a fellow poet, has passed away. He had been ill for a long time. His illness required specialized care unavailable locally and so none of us had seen him for some time. Of course, COVID contributed to that. I doubt you ever heard of him. But now you will. Bruce was a native of Mountain View, Missouri. I met him when I joined the Mountain View Poetry Society. Bruce liked to lead and had a strong influence on the poetry society for many years. He was very good at helping us critique our own work. He was energetic and creative. He also provided leadership at the Yellow House Community Arts Center in West Plains, Missouri, and organized a number of poetry readings in the area. Bruce also studied photography and showed a special interest in photographing flowers. He loved music and participated by playing a ceramic hand drum. In general, he was creative and followed a different drummer in everything he did. He supported himself as a restaurant kitchen manager and cook. Of course, with that level of creativity, some of his endeavors did not work out so well and his loyal friends saw him through those times. He had loyal friends because of his generosity and loyalty to them. In the end, his illness took him from us long before his death. I am sad to say goodbye to Bruce but glad he is no longer stuck in a body that just didn't work anymore. Safe travels, Bruce. I hope you are greeted at the pearly gates by an angel driving a ragtop car and playing your favorite music on the radio as they drive you to the creative corner of heaven.
May 3, 2022 at 11:11pm
May 3, 2022 at 11:11pm
I am having a lot of trouble watching the news between the machinations of the Republican Party and Supreme Court and the Russian war on Ukraine, I am horrified.

The Supreme Court has never before removed a recognized and existing Constitutional right. Furthermore, the current court is setting this decision up to be a precedent to remove other rights including affirmative action, birth control, and choice of marital partner. They are setting it up to take away voting rights of women and people of color. This could lead to removing property rights as well. It is rule by the minority. The most conservative 6 members of the court were appointed by Presidents who were elected by the electoral college after not receiving the majority of the popular vote.

Just focusing on the abortion issue, the government has placed itself in the exam room with a woman and her physician. This is not a legitimate government function. For decades the Republicans have fought against universal healthcare on the grounds that the government has no right to regulate healthcare. The nominees to the Court who are working to strike down Roe v. Wade lied to Congress to get on the court. They are lying to us about how the Constitution works and they are doing so fully aware that they are lying. How do I know they are aware? Because they asserted loyalty to traditional views of the Constitution in their confirmation hearings.

About Ukraine, I am so sad for the citizens that are displaced, being held captive, being tortured, and murdered so Putin can exert power just because he wants to. I feel sad for the Russians who are losing soldiers without even knowing the truth of the action. I am grateful that we are supporting the Ukrainians but equally horrified that we are in the middle of something so very wrong. Even more troublesome is my awareness that our government is headed for a Putin style of authoritarianism.

I could go on and on, but this is enough for now. Thank you for reading.
May 3, 2022 at 10:45pm
May 3, 2022 at 10:45pm
Holmberg, Charlie N., Star Father,(Star Mother book 2), narrated by Karen Chilton, Audible, 2022.

For reasons I don't understand, I love this author's work. The book is fantasy. A mortal woman falls in love with a god, the sun, and goes on a quest to become immortal so she can be with him forever. The quest presents her with both helpers and grave dangers. There are several "godlings" and other humans involved and the protagonist has a loyal cousin who supports her flawlessly. This is totally frivolous reading and I enjoyed it as much as I have all of her books.
April 28, 2022 at 1:42pm
April 28, 2022 at 1:42pm
Reynolds, David S., Walt Whitman’s America: A Cultural Biography, Blackstone Publishing, unabridged audiobook, narrated by John Lescault on Audible. 10/29/2019.

Author, David Reynolds, presents a very detailed history of the cultural influences that impacted Walt Whitman’s writing beginning with his childhood in rural Long Island, NY, and through his various moves, relationships, economic activities and always focusing on his writing goals. Consequently, this is not just a biography, but also a history of 19th century American culture. Whitman initially immersed himself in popular culture with the goal of representing the people of America in a positive light. His first publication of Leaves of Grass is the result of this effort. Over time, his perspective changed. This reflects normal personality development in a very intelligent and curious man. The changes are chronicled in the various editions of Leaves of Grass as well as many, many essays and newspaper articles and editorials, and letters to and from various friends, relatives, fans and critics. The audible version is a little over 28 hours, the longest book I’ve ever listened to on Audible. There are many redundancies which help with remembering important points but are also a bit annoying.

One of the influences is the Swedenborgian religious movement. I had never heard of it so I looked it up and learned that it is a small, Christian sect that exists even now with about 5,000 members. As I understand it, they see the Trinity differently in that they believe that it is aspects of one God rather than God in three persons. They believe that the second coming is an ongoing process happening all the time in the form of souls “dressed in bodies” moving through life as persons. They believe that if you are in touch with the holy spirit, your soul is God incarnate, and you don’t have to know anything about Christianity for this to happen. They believe in an afterlife but describe it differently. I found what I read about them quite interesting and can easily see this thinking in “Song of Myself.”

Whitman was interested in the theater and visual arts as well as literature. He started a few businesses but didn’t like running a business and did not stick with any of them. He volunteered in the hospitals serving Civil War troops and this had a profound influence on his development as a person. He also worked for the Federal Government in Washington, DC for a number of years. He had a unique marketing style for his books which seemed to work. He was also a pillar of his family of origin, financially supporting a brother and a sister who were both mentally ill in some way. There is so much information in this book that I could go on and on. I encourage you to read it yourself as it is very interesting and full of good information.

April 18, 2022 at 6:17pm
April 18, 2022 at 6:17pm
Waterhouse, Lin, Bred to the Bone: deadly secrets at Hunter's Mill, W&B Publishers, Kernersville, NC, 2017.

This is Lin Waterhouse's first novel, a mystery, full of interesting characters. It takes place in a small town in the Ozark Mountains of southern Missouri and primary activity focuses on Hunter's Mill, owned and operated by retirees from Chicago as a tourist attraction. The protagonist, Caroline, is a retired teacher who volunteers at the mill, and who is interested in history and genealogy,. Therein lies the problem for her. There are actually two mysteries, one involving the contents of a safe found in the attic of the mill, and the other, concerning the death of a visitor.

This novel is rich with a sense of place and the conflicts outsiders who move to small Ozark towns often encounter. Very realistic, interesting and enjoyable, this is a light read, great for unwinding at the end of the day.
April 18, 2022 at 6:04pm
April 18, 2022 at 6:04pm
On this day of amazement,
Let us experience renewal of faith
as all around us, nature experiences renewal of life.

Please awaken our understanding that
as we walk into the challenges of our lives
we are never alone
we are always loved
and no matter what mistakes we make
we will be forgiven and strengthened
as we strive to right the wrong we have done.

Please grant us the faith that Jesus demonstrated,
the faith that Mary Magdalene experienced,
the faith that sustained Jesus’ mother, Mary.
Such is the faith that makes hope possible.

Lord, please let the light of your love
shine through our actions
as we strive to continue Jesus’ work.
April 7, 2022 at 10:24am
April 7, 2022 at 10:24am
Smith, Alexander McCall, What W.H. Auden Can Do for You, (narrated by William Neenan) Audible Studios, 10/18/13.

Mr. Smith, when writing the novels about Isabel Dalhousie, frequently quotes Auden. In this small book, he provides a brief biography of Auden focusing on his writing. Smith shares what he admires about Auden and why. Excerpts of some poems are included with a discussion of their meaning to the author. I enjoyed this book and found it very interesting, but wish the poems referred to had been included in their entirety. Consequently, I bought and read a book of Auden poetry which I discussed in detail on February 28, 2022. This small book is a great introduction to Auden.
March 29, 2022 at 10:34am
March 29, 2022 at 10:34am
BOOK Verble, Margaret, When Two Feathers Fell From the Sky, Harper Audio, narrated by Caroline Slaughter, 10/12/21. novel

The title is ambiguous. I like that! This interesting novel presents "Two Feathers," a Native American horse diver performing in a park in Nashville, TN in 1926. She suffers a tragic accident that changes her life as a consequence. Well written, the tale includes issues of racism, Native spirituality, and romance. There are very interesting characters that are well developed. There is a graveyard and a ghost. This is a good read.

{image # 1445398}

{image # 1445398}
March 22, 2022 at 11:09pm
March 22, 2022 at 11:09pm
Donner, Rebecca, All the Frequent Troubles of our Days, Little, Brown &Co. August 2021 (Audible, narrated by the author) Biography.
Mildred Harnack was the author's great-great, aunt, an American college literature teacher who moved with her German husband, to Germany in 1932 to work on a Doctorate. Her husband, also a scholar, was a first cousin of Detrich Bonhoeffer, and like him, became involved in the resistance to Hitler's regime. Mildred and her husband became effective leaders and managed to get a lot done over a period of about three years or so. The details of their work are fascinating, and the historical information surprised me. For example, I had not known that Stalin knew Hitler was going to invade because he had been told several times by his own spies, but he did not believe it and did not prepare. Some of the historical information about Hitler's and Stalin's behavior is very disquieting and remarkably similar to Putin's current behavior. The narration of the audible version is excellent, but it would be a good read no matter how you access it. I highly recommend this book.
March 17, 2022 at 12:14am
March 17, 2022 at 12:14am
An empty helmet among fragmented
ruins. Nearby, a toy bear, face down
dirt dulling its color
“a reminder of home”
A remainder of love.
The American reporter picks it up
calls it a “Teddy Bear,”
so named in the USA for
a Roughrider who survived battle,
a leader with a hearty laugh and a hunger
for big game hunting, a man who said
“Speak softly and carry a big stick.”
A man who advocated for economic justice and
who believed in protecting environmental resources.

A bear on the Ukrania - Russian border has risen
roaring hungry,
Provoked by words that make
nonsense appear wise, words
from the mouth of an old man
with a taste for big game hunting, a man
who survived misfortune,
but now invents victimhood for his nation
as justification for victimizing his neighbors,
and destroying their economy and environment;
people he calls kin.

Isolated and unruly, he believes
he is the soul of the Russian bear.
Though he is as pink as the toy
under the filth of his lies,
perhaps once as loveable,
hugs do not fall from his planes
nor handshakes from his missiles.

The reporter drops the bear where it lay.
No tomb for the unknown bear:
No way home.

90 Entries · *Magnify*
Page of 9 · 10 per page   < >
Previous ... -1- 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 ... Next

© Copyright 2022 Louise Wiggins is Elizabeth (UN: howellbard3 at Writing.Com). All rights reserved.
Louise Wiggins is Elizabeth has granted Writing.Com, its affiliates and its syndicates non-exclusive rights to display this work.

Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/profile/blog/howellbard3