This last weekend, I, along with Jo and Chloe (the dog) took the caravan to the far south coast for a couple of days. When I lived there to nurse my dying mother, as anyone who has done that will attest, depression was never far away. So I joined a writers group to get the feelings out. At the writers meeting on Saturday, I renewed contact with some old friends, read some of 'Cull' and sold a few copies. But in the back of my mind was this poem, probably the best I wrote while nursing Mum, after she was committed to an 'Aged high care facility'. She understood the need for the move, but to see her there day after day, waiting to die, was heart breaking and I still cannot read this poem aloud without tears.
She sits and she stares
at the door to her world
from which she came,
to this allotted space.
Taunted though empty days
and long, long, grieving nights,
by mem’ry of lost relevance.
a human embrace,
while latex plastic hands
touch only from necessity.
This little time, a miser’s gift.
Last chance to ease her passing,
with what will not be given;
The final validation of her existence.
Thanks Tess for your wonderful prompts .
Book launch date set for 27th November but the way it is going, the print run might have been sold out by then!
One reviewer said "A cross between David Suzuki and John Grisham". How about that! Now available through Amazon.
Monday, 6 October 2014
Monday, 29 September 2014
Sometimes, art is
expressing what is possible,
posing life’s conundrum,
visions of improbable.
Sometimes, art is
a wallow, so sublime
it’s understood by no-one;
A noble waste of time.
I read yesterday that Ken Follett and I have two things in common. We were both brought up in Plymouth (Exclusive) Brethren families and we both play bass guitar. But there the parallels end. He has sold 176,000,000 copies of his books. I have sold about nine and am twelve years older. So dear reader, if I am to catch up, you had better hurry up and buy one!
Thanks again Tess for scrounging around for interesting images to challenge and inspire.
Monday, 22 September 2014
Hot sun, warm breeze, just you and me.
We lazed for hours, beside the sea.
Then home, then back,
The tide came in; can’t find my key!
Book (Cull Stafford Ray) now available at Booktopia (Australia) and Amazon.co.uk and of course from the publisher . Book Depository still out of stock. Getting some great reviews. (keep them coming in.)
Thank you Tess for your continuing support for writing and writers.
Monday, 15 September 2014
The breeze in my hair, so refreshing
as spring comes, its life force unleashing.
But what is that dusty,
that smell, rank and musty?
It seems that these curtains need cleaning!
NEW! Available now on http://amazon.co.uk for download.
For Australians: The book now available at Booktopia, and at a discount of 20%! If you want to see an in depth review, take a look at Kutamun's blog .
Thanks again Tess for another lovely prompt.
Monday, 8 September 2014
I tried, not enough, to resist,
as instinct drew me to her.
It seemed at the time, as if
Choices was just another word
And now, as years and consequence
reveal the possibilities, too late,
I know, as gentle sadness comes,
I was helpless, a moth, drawn
to its candle.
Thank you Tess for providing us with your challenges.
Something happened yesterday that took me back a long time and brought this on. Perhaps it was also prompted by the unexpected and sudden death of the incredibly talented Kerrie Biddell, musician extraordinaire.
For anyone still searching for the Book, it seems Amazon has not deigned to list it as yet, so I suggest you Google 'Book Depository', look for Cull by Stafford Ray, and leave your email address to be notified when it comes in. They ship free world wide.
Important (to me). Any of my friends who have read Cull, please go to Goodreads and review it for me.
Tuesday, 2 September 2014
They all wait and hang around,
So expectant, held spellbound.
No red herring to be found!
I just love Wyeth, and Magpie Tales .
My first book review. Here it is. It is almost as long as the book!
Cull – Stafford Ray Classic Author and Publishing Services Pty Ltd – 2014 - ISBN 9780987607706
Let me say at the outset this is a 4 star fast moving novel in the now well-established genre of a political thriller, much favoured by film makers. It is to be hoped its continuance in another form will be guaranteed by a sharp-witted film producer who gets hold of the script and film rights before the competition does. It is an extraordinarily visual story.
The story weaves together several ongoing and current global themes as in climate change, diminishing stocks of the once readily obtainable oil and overpopulation. These themes are woven together in an unrelenting political context which holds the story together and provides the ever-increasing tension as various life views and political stances are challenged, or not, depending on the character, to breaking point.
The characters whilst numerous, are not to the stupefying degree of War and Peace, and encompass those to hate – the quick witted, narcissistic psychopaths; the less agile mentally – going along with flow and the much rarer, essentially decent person – who is challenged to the core of his being. One such person is central to the whole story.
Dialogues are first rate, the characters' private and personal feeling and observations (as in stage left sotto voce so to speak) are wonderful and the characters are very well drawn and consistently all of a piece. The structure of the book is well-nigh perfect, short chapters, moving settings and increasing tension mounting all the time. The excellent choice of type face and line spacing are refinements that are deserving of praise.
The cover is also a very appropriate choice.
So OK you ask what did you not like about the book? Well, absolutely nothing at all. Perhaps a dramatis personnae page might be a thought.
So again, four stars and who, I ask, is knocking on the door with offers of film rights for this extraordinarily visual fast moving political thriller?
Dr Pem Gerner. BA English Lit
Monday, 25 August 2014
Across the heavens, stars therein,
Imponderable, improbable, discipline.
I stare in wonder,
As I ponder:
To paint this, where does one begin!
Thanks again Tess , for giving us a place for our creativity to show.
"Harry Fromm must choose between loyalty to his President and the human race...."
If Amazon can't help you, try the Book Depository.
Monday, 18 August 2014
The first I noticed was the soap
That slid across the kitchen sink.
And then, the hill I climb with ease
Was steeper than before, I think.
Then where I often park the car,
Once level, now was at an angle.
And my bed, a solid haven,
Tipped me out, bed clothes a-tangle.
But when I sought the Magpie prompt
I realised then, the simple fact is;
Why my life seems such a shambles;
The world had tipped upon its axis.
RAD's photo from Magpie Tales makes a challenging prompt.
PS. Thanks for those intrepid seekers from the Blogosphere, who tracked down my novel, Cull at JoJo and bought it! I look forward to (and maybe dread) comments.
BUT! Just heard from JoJo they are releasing Cull in the US and Britain. I will announce when and where as soon as I know.
Tuesday, 12 August 2014
"Sex before marrying, never."
Say celibate priests, oh so clever.
"Let God bless your union
In Holy communion,
Or suffer His Hell-fires forever."
Poor old God gets bad press from me. But to be fair, he allowed me to be abused in his name.
I hope my friends are not offended by that. But, as Phillip Adams said (words to the effect): "Being an Atheist means there's no compulsion to hate anybody." And I don't, not even God.
Maybe you can find more politically correct contributions at Magpie Tales