Death and Loss


I MISS YOU NOW THAT YOU ARE GONE. LOSING A GOOD FRIEND LIKE YOU CHANGES EVERYTHING IN LIFE.

NOW MY WORLD IS A LITTLE SMALLER AND THE SUN IS FARTHER AWAY. THE DAYS ARE DREARIER, AND IN THE SHADE OF MISSING LIGHT, THE FLOWERS DO NOT GROW AS VIBRANT OR AS FRAGRANT AS THEY DID WHEN YOU WERE WITH ME.

THE NIGHTS ARE A DARKER SHADOW OF BLACK NOW. AND EVERYTHING IN GOD’S CREATION IS SOMEHOW COLDER.

I AM SAD THAT YOU ARE GONE FOREVER. BUT I JUST WANT TO SAY THAT YOU SHOULD KNOW I LOVED YOU AND I WILL NEVER FORGET YOU.

YOU ARE A PART OF ME NOW.

Utter Devastation of the Spirit is as bad as Death. Never take a Good Friend for Granted. They can die and leave you in the blink of an eye.

 

Lovers and the Antique Brass Bed


It was a cold November day, and as I lay in bed awakening, I saw the newborn sun’s illumination flare up behind the layer of condensation on the bedroom windowpanes.

golden mist coming in window

The light shone diffuse, coming into the bedroom as a gold radiant mist.

My ancestors had repainted those wooden, square borders that hold the glass, painting them again and again over the years. The wood had an accretion of paint layers, almost geological, and sedimentary, in sheets of white weather coatings. After many years, the layers of white paint flaked, and cracked into many fine lines and fissures.

The bedroom window I looked at was an old window, in an old house, a house of four generations, which in time became home.

The sun’s light, filtered by the fog on the window, shone diffusely into our bedroom as a gold, radiant mist. It filled the bedroom, as if gilded dust hung about everywhere in the air.

Turning my head on the pillow, I saw her sleeping next to me. The soft radiance revealed the graceful, contours of my wife’s face. Hers was a statuesque, symmetrical, bone structure, resulting in feminine loveliness.

The condensation on the windowpanes, attested to our warm life breaths, pulling in and out of sleeping lungs during the night. The layer of moisture clung to the glass as a memory. It held the traces of her whispers in bed, whispers which I had felt against the nape of my neck the night before. I vaguely recalled that softly spoken, “I love you,” fading away, as my conscious awareness sank, into the oblivion of sleep, as if I were slipping beneath the surface of quicksand.

brass bed

The Antique Brass Bed frame; The Family Bed of four Generations

Coming out of my recollection, I yawned. I rubbed my eyes, sat up, and leaned my bare back against the vertical bars, at the head of the antique brass bedframe.

Over many years, the dry country air discolored the brass bedframe’s slats, bars, and darkened the round brass knobs atop the bedposts. As a child, I loved to turn these brass knobs with my small hands, as the circular orbs squeaked and vibrated when rotated.

The antique bedframe now showed in gradations, a spectrum of tarnished brass in the colors from shiny to the darkest bronze.

Reaching back for more than a century and a half, that bed frame had been the marital bed of the previous three generations of my family. Each generation of my ancestors married, and as a couple, they slept each night in the brass bed, and they grew old together slumbering on their Sears and Roebuck feather mattresses.

In their golden years, I contemplated what their old minds dreamed about, and how each of them lived, acting out scenes, in the realm of their imaginings. I wondered if for a night, they were young once again. As I imagined them dreaming, I could picture white diamonds pulsing, scattered across the vast, black, velvet expanse of the heavens, hanging so high above the tin roof of this humble house.

I suddenly emerged from within the depths of my mind, and became again aware of myself sitting up in the Family Bed, leaning back against the cold brass bars of the headboard. Having laid my bare back against the brass bars for too long, I was deeply chilled. I shivered in the cold bite of the bedroom air, frigid inside the unheated house.

As I pulled the old patchwork quilt, that my grandmother had sewn by hand, from atop the bed, I pulled it gently, so as not to wake her. Yet I also pulled it all the way to me, so as to bundle it and wrap it about me. I removed the patchwork quilt, from the pile of the many others that warmed she and I during the cold nights of the winter.

I wrapped the warm cloth heirloom around my bare neck, my shoulders, and my back. Then I pulled it around in front of me, grasping both ends of the quilt in one hand, holding it at my neck.

I was careful not to wake her as I lowered my legs off the bed, and let my bare feet touch the cold wooden floor. I stood up to get the blood moving in my legs, and in seconds, the chill of the floor drained all of the heat from my feet. My feet throbbed, burning painfully with the coldness. I walked away from the bed quietly, and I headed in curiosity towards the window to look at the translucent condensation on the windowpanes.

At first glance, the moisture on the inside of the pane, looked just like frosted glass, but as I inspected the foggy film more closely, I saw that the condensation was actually thousands of microscopic beads of water, each clinging tenuously to the surface of the windowpane.

In wonder, I touched the layer of moisture. The glass was cold and it chilled my finger. The moisture of our exhaled breaths wet my finger as I swiped it across the glass. My finger made a clear streak in the condensation on the pane, and small drops of water ran down from its edges. I quickly exhaled on it, and the clear streak filled halfback with the fog of the moisture of my breath’s humidity.

Her Sleeping

She was beautiful as her skin basked in the morning light. In awe of her, my breath hung heavy in my lungs, like lead, and for a moment, I could not breathe.

I turned and looked back to the bed, and I saw my wife sleeping. I cherished her with my eyes. She was beautiful as her skin basked in the morning light. Her naked shoulder lay exposed above the blanket, supple, and ivory white. She was young and innocent, shapely and nubile. In awe of her, my breath hung heavy in my lungs, and for a moment, I could not breathe.

The night before, when we went to bed, her long, chestnut hair had lay splayed out, in voluptuous disarray, across her pillow. While nuzzling at the soft, white, nape of her neck, I had pressed my nose into the silky morass of her dark hair. I inhaled the fusion of many delicate, intermingling fragrances. I remembered the all-consuming, sensual nature of the smell of her hair.

Her hair bore traces of turned over sod in the fertile fields.

Deeply woven into her reddish brown waves were traces of the farmland. Her long lustrous hair bore the earthen, musty smell of freshly turned over sod in the plowed fields. Also was the scent of that distinct breeze, which always arrives as a fragrant announcement, just moments before a summer rain shower in the country. This was a fragrant breeze that undeniably smells like safety and home. It is the smell of a blessing.

My nose detected numerous, feminine, anointing oils in her hair, and of her flesh; the oils were a musky fusion that composed her unique, primal smell. No other woman alive exuded the same fragrance. My body knew the smell of her instinctually. And when I smelled her scent, I knew she was my mate.

Her scent whispered to my sense of smell, beckoning my body unto hers. It was an intoxicating bidding of her pheromones in the innocent concupiscence of our love.

Her hair bore the scented memories from the previous evening. Woven deeply within her long silken curls, was the smell of perspiration from our naked, entwined, exhausted bodies. There was the brackish biting smell of the ocean’s waves, whitecaps that surged, swelling, and rushing inland towards the untouched volcanic rocks. The waves struck the black, jagged, pillars with a fury, throwing expansive white froth, in wide fan-like dispersals and a fine mist of briny droplets.

waves crashing

It retained faint traces from the mist of the oceans passionate waves, crashing against the black volcanic rocks. The waves struck the rocks, spraying white froth in a mist of briny droplets. We made thunder in the night, as our bodies lunged and hove in the brass bed, and our bodies moved inside of each other. It seemed that the earth moved beneath us, and that high above the angels wept.

We made amatory thunder in the night, as our bodies lunged and hove in the brass bed, moving inside of each other. It seemed that the earth moved beneath us. And for one sacred moment, the boundaries that separated us dissolved, and our two souls fused, and we both inhaled, and sighed, in one shared breath of ecstasy.

As we slept, she was soft legs, which were warm against my hamstrings on a cold winter night. She had a perfect curve the neck, the graceful arc of a warm breast, the curving relief of a smooth hip, and a white delicate shoulder that I woke up to in the night, a bare shoulder that I loved to pull the hand-made patchwork quilt back over.

She was wide, sleepy, coffee brown eyes—eyes that compelled my deepest trust by never asking for it. Her eyes showed no sign of judgment nor embarrassment, of she nor I, nor our naked bodies. Her eyes showed only a loving acceptance, for my body, my strengths, my insecurities, and my foibles.

Hers were eyes that willingly unveiled the window into her soul and revealed everything about her to me, and in doing so belied absolutely nothing that I could not accept and love, and nothing that I could not forgive and forget.

Her dark eyes staring deeply into mine made me stronger, and somehow they made me more of a man. Her eyes loved me with their softness, and they humbled me with their profound tenderness. Her eyes brought me to my knees.

When I looked deep into her eyes, I saw her innocence, her virtue, and a deep love and gratitude for everything in her life. I revered these eyes, and looking into them made me want to be a better man.

At times when thunderclouds rained down angry and struck hard on our tin roof, her eyes looked into mine showing fright. When those eyes looked into mine, the worry melted away. I realized that I had soothed her, and she was no longer afraid. Then she wrapped one arm over my chest and the other underneath my neck and she pulled her body close into mine.

And when I understood what she felt emotionally, that she believed that I had the power to protect her, and give her succor, it melted away all my inhibitions. And I cried, and I was not ashamed. She whispered tender admiration into my ear; she kissed my neck in nurturing love, and laid her cheek on my chest, then she rapidly fell into a deep, safe, sleep.

Hers were the only eyes that I would walk to the end of the earth, simply to gaze into, as they told me that she truly loved me, and that she would stay with me for the rest of our lives.

They were the eyes that I wanted to grow old with over the years. And such eyes could never lose their resplendent love and acceptance with the passing of decades.

And I was not concerned about aging. Because I knew that when I was an old man, and looked into her eyes, I would always be young.

Forever

Writing Dialogue, Advice for Writers


Writing convincing dialogue is one of the hardest things for new writers to

master. In fact, it’s so rarely done well in any form of fiction that when it is done right,
people rally around it. The movie Pulp Fiction, Terry McMillan’s novel Waiting to
Exhale, and the TV series My So-Called Life were all remarkable in large part because of
how believably the characters spoke.
Here’s the kind of dialog you read in many beginners’ stories:
“What happened to you, Joe?”
“Well, Mike, I was walking down the street, and a man came up to me. I
said to him, `What seems to be the difficulty?’ He replied, `You owe me a
hundred dollars.’ But I said I didn’t. And then he hit me.”
Here’s how real people talk:
“Christ, man, what happened?”
“Well, umm, I was goin’ down the street, y’know, and this guy comes up to
me, and I’m like, hey, man, what’s up? And he says to me, he says, `You owe me
a hundred bucks,’ and I’m like no way, man. In your dreams. Then — pow! I’m on
the sidewalk.”
See the differences? Most people’s real dialog tends to contain occasional
profanity (“Christ”), to be very informal (“guy” instead of “man,” “bucks” instead of
“dollars”), and to have lots of contractions and dropped letters (“goin’,” “y’know”). Note,
too, that when relaying an event that happened in the past, most people recount it in the
present tense (“he says to me,” rather than “he replied”).
Also note that in the first example, the speakers refer to each other by name. In
reality, we almost never say the name of the person we’re talking to: you know who
you’re addressing, and that person knows he or she is being addressed. A few other
features of real human speech demonstrated in the second example above: when relaying
to a third party a conversation we had with somebody else, we usually only directly quote
what the other person said; our own side of the conversation is typically relayed with
considerable bravado, and the listener understands that what’s really being presented is
what we wish we’d had the guts to say, not what we actually said. We also tend to act out
events, rather than describe them (“Then — pow! I’m on the sidewalk”). Indeed, without
the acting out, the words often don’t convey the intended meaning. The speaker was
probably standing on the sidewalk throughout the altercation, of course; what he meant
by “on the sidewalk” was that he was knocked down.
Now, which of the above examples is better? Well, the second is clearly more
colorful, and more entertaining to read. But it’s also more work to read. A little
verisimilitude goes a long way. Dropped final letters are rarely shown in fictional dialog
(they’re usually only employed to indicate an uneducated speaker, although in reality
almost everyone talks that way), and vagueness about verbs (“I’m like” instead of “I
said”), verbalized pauses (“umm”), and content-less repetitions (the second part of “He
says to me, he says”) are usually left out. In a short story, I might perhaps use dialog like
the second example above; in a novel, where the reader has to sit through hundreds of
pages, I might be inclined toward some sort of middle ground:
“Christ, man, what happened?”
“I was going down the street, and this guy comes up to me, and I’m like,
hey, man, what’s up? And he says to me, `You owe me a hundred bucks,’ and I
say `in your dreams.’ Then — pow! — he knocks me on my ass.”
Of course, not all your characters should talk the same way. I read one story
recently in which there were dozens of lines of dialog like this:
“Interchangeable?” he said. “What do you mean the characters are
interchangeable?”
We have the attribution tag between an initial word and a sentence that repeats
that same word. This is clearly being used to denote confusion — and works fine once or
twice, but grates if the same dialog device is employed more than that in a given story —
especially by multiple speakers. Assign distinctive speaking patterns to single characters.
One trick is to come up with a word or two that one character — and only that character —
will use a lot (in my The Terminal Experiment, the character Sarkar loves the word
“crisp,” using it to mean anything from well-defined to delicate to appealing to complex);
you might also come up with some words your character will never use (in Starplex, I
have a character who hates acronyms, and therefore avoids referring to the ship’s
computer as PHANTOM).
Profanity is also important. Terence M. Green’s rule: you can’t worry about what
your mother will think of your fiction. But, again, not all characters swear the same way,
and some may not swear at all (in The Terminal Experiment, I have a Muslim character
who never swears, although the rest of his speech is quite colloquial).
It’s tricky handling characters who are not native English speakers. No matter
what language they’re speaking, people tend also to be thinking in that language. It’s
common to write a French character saying things like, “There are beaucoup reasons why
someone might do that.” But at the time the person is speaking, his brain is thinking in
English; it’s as unlikely for him to slip into French for a word as it is for a computer
running a program in FORTRAN to suddenly switch over to BASIC for a single
instruction. Instead, if you want to remind the reader of the character’s native tongue,
have the character occasionally mutter or think to himself or herself in that language.
The best way to learn how real people talk is to tape record some actual human
conversation, and then transcribe it word for word (if you can’t find a group of people
who will let you do this, then tape a talk show off TV, and transcribe that). You’ll be
amazed: transcripts of human speech, devoid of body language and inflection, read
mostly like gibberish. To learn how to condense and clean up dialog, edit your transcript.
For your first few attempts, try to edit by only removing words, not by changing any of
them — you’ll quickly see that most real speech can be condensed by half without deleting
any of the meaning.
Finally, test your fictional dialog by reading it out loud. If it doesn’t sound natural,
it probably isn’t. Keep revising until it comes trippingly off your tongue (yes, that’s a
cliche — but remember, although you want to avoid cliches in your narrative, people use
them all the time in speech).
A couple of matters of form that seem to elude most beginners: when writing
dialog for a single speaker that runs to multiple paragraphs, put an open-quotation mark
at the beginning of each paragraph, but no close-quotation mark until the end of the final
paragraph. And in North America, terminal punctuation (periods, exclamation marks, and
question marks) go inside the final close-quotation mark: “This is punctuated correctly.”
Get your speech-attribution tags in as early as possible. There’s nothing more
frustrating than not knowing whose dialog you’re reading. Slip the tag in after the first
completed clause in the sentence: “You know,” said Juan, “when the sky is that shade of
blue it reminds me of my childhood back in Mexico.” And when alternating lines of
dialog, make sure you identify speakers at least every five or six exchanges; it’s very easy
for the reader to get lost otherwise. Finally, much real dialog goes unfinished. When
someone is interrupted or cut off abruptly, end the dialog with an em-dash (which you
type in manuscript as two hyphens); when he or she trails off without completing the
thought, end the dialog with ellipsis points (three periods). Real dialog also tends to be
peppered with asides: “We went to Toronto — boy, I hate that city — and found …”
Get your characters talking at least halfway like real people, and you’ll find that
the readers are talking, too: they’ll be saying favorable things about your work.

I Loved Her More Than She Loved Me


She told me that she loved me and I knew that she felt just as much in love as I did.


When we kissed, our lips, moved together and touched so

softly, like a butterfly closing its velvet wings, right when

they whisper gently together.

To my lament, I noticed one day that when we kissed, her

lips were colder than mine were.

This continued from that day on.

I thought that the heat of my lips meant that I was

passionate for her, but what it actually meant was that I

loved her in an all-embracing way, and she loved me in a less

significant way.

I then realized that two people could love one another in different ways and the more joyful one would never recognize the rejection.


Never underestimate the power of denial.


Did she ever love me? Now I wonder if I can trust what she said to me. I would like to

think that I could because she said such warm, safe, and happy things.


I did not cling to her in fear. I lived and existed to cherish her. I wanted to share with

my life with her, two people fused into one soul, yet two separate individuals with their

own pursuits.

But then again I think that she always had unspoken white lies so as not to hurt me.

Ironically, that is the thing that

I think hurt me the most.

I still live wounded from a broken heart,

and even though it was never actually true—

– that she was mine, when she was not –

—when I was living and thinking that, she

was mine, and not knowing— that she was gone – that was the happiest time of my life

She is the love of my life.


I do not know how to top that sort of resplendent joy.


I thought about how to go on with my life. I yearned dig a hole and crawl in it, and die. That was my

first impulse.


But my life goes on with or without my will. So now, I just get up each morning and breathe. Then I do

it again and again until I fall asleep at night.


I try not to dream of her, but I do, I wake up, and remember that she is not here. That really burns,

aches, and throbs like a red-hot hammer hit me in the chest.



Love comes in so many forms. Every love is different.


This one felled all my joy like a slain tree.


How to Write With Style by Kurt Vonnegut (2 Videos)


How to Write With Style by Kurt Vonnegut

Source : How to Use the Power of the Printed Word, Doubleday

Newspaper reporters and technical writers are trained to reveal almost nothing about themselves in their writings. This makes them freaks in the world of writers, since almost all of the other ink-stained wretches in that world reveal a lot about themselves to readers. We call these revelations, accidental and intentional, elements of style.

These revelations tell us as readers what sort of person it is with whom we are spending time. Does the writer sound ignorant or informed, stupid or bright, crooked or honest, humorless or playful — ? And on and on.

Why should you examine your writing style with the idea of improving it? Do so as a mark of respect for your readers, whatever you’re writing. If you scribble your thoughts any which way, your readers will surely feel that you care nothing about them. They will mark you down as an egomaniac or a chowderhead — or, worse, they will stop reading you.

The most damning revelation you can make about yourself is that you do not know what is interesting and what is not. Don’t you yourself like or dislike writers mainly for what they choose to show you or make you think about? Did you ever admire an emptyheaded writer for his or her mastery of the language? No.

So your own winning style must begin with ideas in your head. Continue reading

So They Want Me To Go To Rehab…


Hanson arrived home from work late, and he came into the house through the front door as usual. He slowly pulled the door to a close. It shut quietly behind him with an almost imperceptible click. He did not lock the deadbolt, which was odd, as he always remembered to lock it when he came in, and he always-reminded Stacey to do the same.

Stacey stood waiting in the living room to greet him just as she did every day. Hanson and Stacey both made a habit of greeting one another each evening when he walked in the door. They both knew that this was important to the health of their relationship, and they received one another eagerly and attentively, each day without fail.

When they had gone through marriage counseling in the past, the therapist suggested that they make an agreement to practice greeting one another in such as manner.

Stacey was the one who had insisted that both attend therapy for the problem with their marriage. Obstinately set against it, Hanson first refused the idea; but when the problem got worse, Stacey eventually insisted that Hanson make a choice.

She told Hanson that they could go through counseling, work their problems out, and get their marriage back. Alternatively Hanson could choose not to go to marriage counseling with her, and they would just deal with the problem by accepting things as they were—which in other words meant that Stacey would leave him if he did not go through counseling, because she would be damned if she was going to live that way any longer.

Psychotherapy turned out to be a lot of work and they both went through the emotional ringer in the process. When they finished the sessions however, they both were grateful that they had gone to seek help. Hanson would be the first to admit this fact. He had changed for the better in the process.

That was two years ago and things between them were far better now, the past two years had been like when they first got married, they were happy all over again.

However, this present evening, when Hanson came in late from work and silently closed the door, he walked in the house without looking his wife in the eyes. Stacey’s face began to beam with a huge smile at her husband’s arrival, but suddenly the smile fell from her face when she noticed his averted eyes. They focused inwardly, were dark and brooding, and he appeared deeply absorbed in his thoughts. It took Stacey off guard when she saw that Hanson’s face was red and saw his nostrils flaring as he inhaled heavily.

Stacey did not speak; she just stood still and watched him worrisomely, trying to gain some sense of his mood. When Hanson walked past her without saying a word, Stacey was immediately aware that something was very wrong.

Stacey’s mind quickly rewound the memory of Hanson coming home from work the evening before this one, and she quickly reviewed everything that had happened then.

Yesterday, Hanson came home from work on time, and when he came in the front door, he found Stacey standing in the living room as always. But things had been very different.

Hanson came in and pulled the door closed behind him hurriedly, slamming it with a bang. He immediately looked his wife straight into the eyes. He also remembered to lock the deadbolt, but did so abnormally, without turning back to look at it.

Hanson advanced towards Stacey who absorbed his intense stare but did not speak a word. As Hanson walked towards her, his steps were forceful, deliberate. He just kept walking, never stopping, as if he was a wind-up toy, too tightly wound. He walked right past the side table without placing his briefcase on it. As he walked on towards his wife, he simply swung his arm to the side and let loose of the brief case handle. It went flying in an arc and Stacey jumped, startled when the briefcase hit the floor with a crash. Continue reading

Inspiring Words for when you are feeling down as a Writer.


Inspiring Words for when you are feeling down as a Writer.

A video narrated By Phillip Glass.

Continue reading