Monday, January 26, 2015

Writer’s Workshops 10: Writing Fun!

Hi everyone! Today’s a good day for some writing.

The following is the opening sentence to a writing prompt.

You can use it or abuse it.

By that, I mean you can either use part of the sentence to start your writing or you can use all of it. The idea is to write something down, whether it’s a paragraph or short story.

Happy writing!

 

It’s not like there was anything wrong with me, but the clock struck ten o’clock and my nerves shot up as a bad omen.

 

My thoughts are supernatural! Metamorphism anyone? or Maybe just a bad case of test anxiety? Hmm… He spent all night at the bar, thinking about how she stood him up, and dozed off right when the game ended. Drool sipped out of his mouth while the funniest dream ensued in his mind. That was, until his phone went off at ten o’clock and… the dream played out in front of him. His nerves shot up and…

Monday, January 19, 2015

Death as Metaphor 15: Dreams that Play Death and Violence

Poets who include death or violence in their poetry do so for different reasons.

Themes of death and violence may be portrayed in poetry. Sometimes, due to experiences with death and violence is what plays a role in these writings. It also is apparent that dreams with death and violence play a role in trying to understand the reasons for using metaphors in poetry.

Dreams contain a lot of meaning and images that the dreamer may not be aware of. There are various images that appear in dreams that provide messages about the real world and our own conclusions of our lives.

“Symbols are the ‘words’ used by dream language: each one represents an idea, a memory, a mood, an insight, arising from the dreamer’s unconscious (Fontana, David. The Secret Language of Dreams: A Visual Key to Dreams and Their Meanings. San Francisco: Chronicle Books. 1994. Page 40).”

However, some dream symbols may change their meaning from one person to another. Most of the symbols make sense to the dreamer because they form associations to the dreamer’s real life and other symbols hold universal meaning. When one represses emotions of anger toward a spouse or loved one, a symbol that may be dreamt is the decapitating of the head. This symbol is one of removing the problem and moving on.

Writing poems with dream images can evoke the strong emotions needed to convey the message, even if the themes of death and violence are not real.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Books I’m Reading 13

Try Reading Again: How to Motivate and Teach Older Beginners, Age 10 and Up by DeAnna Horstmeier, Ph.D. Great book describing on detail the Triangle Method to help students learn to read which includes Phonics/Phonemic Awareness, Language Experience Stories, and Fluent reading of structured stories by others.
 
The Moon before Morning by W.S. Merwin is an awesome poetry collection. It’s the kind you can read while sitting outside your patio with a good cup of tea, even the birds will join you!

The Golden Road by Rachel Hadas is a wonderful poetry collection.

Firefly Ubder the Tongue by Coral Bracho. This is a bilingual collection of poetry by a Mexican woman. Her use of language is exciting with lots of water images.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Short Stories & Such 16: The Song That Changed Everything


Welcome Back!

Since it’s the New Year, I decided to post a story about birth. I wrote this a while back, so I adjusted it somewhat and decided to share the edits. Of course like all stories I post here, it still needs a lot of work, but it sure is fun looking back at what I started with and learning to better myself as a writer. Enjoy!

                                                The Song that Changed Everything

A slow melody eased from the office radio like syrup dripping from a bottle onto a fat pancake.

“That song again.”

“Please try not to strain yourself,” the nurse said. She nudged me away from the wheel bed and the sound of cooing filled the room.

We were heading for the emergency room. I wasn’t sure what to do, but the song kept playing and I wanted to stay close.

“Ugh…” That song’s been on my mind ever since my friend Jamie left. We played cards during her visit. That is, until this happened.

Love… love is my one

Love… love for you

Love…

I can’t believe it. It was my favorite song, too. It was the “it” song for Jamie and I. She was the one that got away, you know. We could have made it work, but she didn’t feel the same way. She was going to remain true to me… to the rest of us on the farm. She was going to stay on with me on the farm.

This song. This song just felt all wrong now even though it was a happy occasion.

“Sir, you have to step aside now.”

“But I’m with her!”

“Sir, there’s nothing you can do here. Please take a seat in the waiting room.”

I paced back and forth. My hands trembled as the thoughts about my new life of building a home for the animals floated in front of me.

This song.

The four vacant walls stared at me like a blank paper. They seemed to throb along with my pulsing head. I could have popped a vein in the hours I was there.

“Sir?”

“Yes?”

“It’s a healthy baby girl.”

“What? Are you sure?”

“Of course. Do you want to see her?”

“No! It cannot be. We were expecting a boy. He was going to sire future bulls!”

 
 
 You can view the original draft at Writer’s Digest under ‘Chilo’ for March 27, 2012 Writing Prompt at http://www.writersdigest.com/prompts/the-song-that-changed-everything

 

Monday, December 22, 2014

Pet News 13: Your pet and the Holidays

During this Holiday Season, it is important not to forget our pets and their needs. This is especially true during the coming cold winter nights.

I was at a gathering the other night and the guardians of a small dog had let their pet outside with a dog bed and blanket. Yes, the dog had a sweater on, but as the night progressed, so did the temperature. It went down.

When I looked out the window I said, “It’s too cold for your dog.”

To which they responded, “We can’t have him in the house while the party’s going on. He’ll get into things.”

And I wondered: what would it hurt to have a small tent, doghouse, or artificial ceiling made for the dog. Maybe seal off a section of a room for him.

It’s true, our pets might get stressed with the number of people invited, but we still need to provide for them. They deserve just as much care and attention as our guests.

So if you have a party or other gathering this Holiday season, don’t forget your pets. Don’t leave them out in the cold and forget to feed them. They are, after all, part of the family.

 

Update:

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

This is my 100th post! Thanks for sticking with me.
If you haven’t had a chance to read the previous posts, don’t hesitate.
Due to the Holidays, I won’t post until the New Year.
Have fun… and stay safe!

Monday, December 15, 2014

Another Sad Affair


You know that feeling you get when you read or see something in the news that stays on your mind for days on end? That’s what happened when I heard that Hong Kong and Nicaragua were partnering to do a canal.  


This isn’t the first time a proposal has been discussed. Years ago they wanted to do it but it cost too much and it cut through too much land (animals and people would suffer).


It seems that now there is money for this enormous project. The problem with the new plan is that they would still have to cut through a ton of land such as two nature reserves (home to a variety of tropical animals and plants species) and the famous cloud forest. Then, they will continue toward Lake Nicaragua (a major source of water for the people) and past Ometepe Island, which was built by two volcanoes (I think one of them is still active!). But they don’t stop there, they would still need to cut through the cities like Rivas that are heavily populated (just because it’s an isthmus).


Is it really more important to rival the Panama Canal?

I’m sure scientists the world over are concerned about this.

Think of the ecological impact it would have to the country, its poor, its animals and plants, and the climate change inflicted upon the surrounding countries… maybe even the world.


Its news like this that get you thinking about the price we pay for advancement in our lives.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Quote 11


No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.

-Aesop

 

Today I read a story titled: Benny’s Pennies by Pat Brisson to a group of kindergarteners. The story dealt with a boy who had five pennies to buy something, but instead of wasting it on himself, he asked his family what they would like.


Each member gave him a suggestion and off Benny went. As he was walking in the countryside, different vendors were around. Benny visited five and was able to buy the things for his family.

One student commented, “Now he has no pennies for himself.”


Another asked, “Why didn’t Benny buy something for himself?”


This reminded me of Aesop’s quote. It wasn’t about purchasing items or using up all the money, but about making others feel good by doing something nice for them. The reward would be found inside their heart. It’s a warm feeling that makes you happy you did an act of kindness.


The students got to talk about it and share times they made an act of kindness.


Since Christmas is around the corner, acts of kindness abound. We shouldn’t forget that this warm feeling is special and is what makes us better.

So… what act of kindness have you done?