Stephen Geez earned his undergrad and grad degrees at the University of Michigan. A composer, TV producer, publisher, graphic artist, and writer, he focuses now on novels, essay collections, short fiction, authors’ how-to under the GeezWriter brand, and scripts. Founding member of the publisher Fresh Ink Group, he works with a wide variety of authors to produce their best possible work. Watch for his essays, stories, books, and blog posts at www.StephenGeez.com Find him and his author friends at www.FreshInkGroup.com. Send him a note from his member page or the Contact Form.
Frank relishes fast success and early retirement, but struggling to preserve his life’s work thrusts him into a desperate battle to protect the people he cares about most.
Beverly seeks a new beginning in Tarpon Springs—until those she trusts steal control of her destiny, forcing a fight for her very survival.
All twelve-year-old Kevin wants is attention from the only man he respects, yet murder and the wrenching indifference of a callous legal system toward one vulnerable child proves even friendship might never be enough.
Riven by tragedy, consumed by grief, all three must confront the wondrous possibility that our indelible bonds may somehow transcend even death, that a cherished soul truly can find the way back.
Only together might this improbable family dare embrace their own brand of unexpected love, that infinite potential to achieve more than any one person can alone. Through it all, they are teased by the mystery of those dancing lights, a million pinpoints in every imaginable color swirling to form brilliant images of extraordinary lives.
MY REVIEW 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 An unforgettable reading experience.
We all reach a place in our timeline of life when we call into question everything we hold to be truths. I have recently found myself in that space and place in my own life. Reading this book therefore was both an unnerving and emotional journey to take.
Author Stephen Geez doesn’t invite you softly into the raw emotion that colors this his first book. I found myself catapulted and thrown headlong by the wonderful lyricism of his writing.
The characters became the people I’ve known throughout my own life, the broken and tarnished loved ones, those left spiritually bereft by the harsh hand of fate. I could see them clearly, I could hear their voices, such is the power of the gut level empathy that shines through in this book.
I felt bereft when I’d finished reading “Dance Of The Lights.” Much as I feel when a dearly loved friend leaves me to head on home. I took pleasure in the knowledge that I can now read this whenever that need to reconnect arises again. Powerful does not even begin to cover what this book holds between it covers. My thanks to this author for sharing his talent.
Unhappy!Oh you clever observant human! Well done. You are a true master of understatement…Hmmm?
Do you think I am even remotely content? Hmmm? Does this face bear even a vague resemblance to your visions of feline delight? Ask yourself three important questions.
1] Should I pick up, and attempt to comfort this cat?
2] Is my medical insurance paid up?
3] Do I have masochistic tendencies?
If you responded in the affirmative to more than one of these, I recommend that you take a valium, exit immediately, and seek professional guidance.
Someone is going to pay dearly, for this…this atrocity.
You are probably under the impression that I have partaken in the luxury of a bubbly, scented, lovingly engineered bath.
You are wrong! W.R.O.N.G!
I am an educated creature, endowed with more than a normal amount of catty versus human tolerance.
Therefore; had I merely been bathed, I would perhaps still be a tad wet, a smidgen disgruntled, a little perturbed.
But no! I am so completely devastated, so overwhelmingly shattered, that I uttered, dare I say it, a cuss word! I uttered it in French of course, such a useful language.
I will repeat it, ‘Merde’! N’est pas?
I am in this state of extreme agitation, because of a Dog.
Yes, I did say dog, D.O.G!
Allow me to enlighten you.
I will in the recounting of this horror, attempt to maintain some vestige of dignity and restraint. On completion of my discourse into the cruel behavior I have been subjected to, I will allow you fair-minded humans, to reach your own conclusions as to whether or not I have been mistreated. I have no further choice of action open to me. I will be leaving my home at the completion of this sad story.
Please, be seated.
Attempt to overcome the need to comfort me.
And journey with me, into to the realms of dismal disarray.
I was sunning myself as was my habit on these warm winter afternoons. I was lying alongside the pool.
I find the sparkle on the water most refreshing, and the fact that the small troll-sized humans cannot gain access to the area is of course a prime consideration. Dreadful, sticky, smelly, little gremlins that they are.
Can you imagine my horror, my shock, my fear, when into the open terrain outside the pool area came this …this, thing?
My dears it was enormous, ugly, grotesque…!
The dog it had with it was also less than attractive.
Having regained my breath sufficiently to cast a disinterested eye on the more attractive of the two visitors hereinafter referred to as ‘The Dog.’ I was a little surprised to note that it was not a bastard breed.
Although I am almost positive its’ owner was.
No, ‘The Dog’ was a Boxer; a pedigreed Boxer, if I was correct, which of course I was.
Now, I come from Royal stock myself, and am of course familiar with the best of everything. I grudgingly admit therefore that a Boxer is a noble breed.
Did I also mention it was on a leash? I did of course check to ensure that the gate was fastened.
As it was a troll-proof locking device I was certain that the gross excuse for manhood, accompanying ‘The Dog’ would be unable to fathom the intricacies of opening it. Hence, I would remain undisturbed.
Life was as it should be. Tranquil and quiet.
‘The Dog’s’ companion, I hesitate to refer to it as human. ‘It’ spoke, not well, but vaguely comprehensible.”
‘It’ said, “Geez, mate, will ya look at that, a bloody great pool for ya to cool off in.”
To which ‘The dog’ with the unfortunate name of ‘Mate,’ responded,
“Woof” — tres originale?
“Bloody hell, mate, take a look at the pussy!” ‘It’ said.
“As for the reference to the pussy, I cast my eyes around, and sadly could only assume that, it, was referring to me!
“Pussy indeed.” I glared at the offensive male. Sadly, it had no effect.
‘The Dog’ hereinafter referred to as ‘Mate’ however, had heard, and understood exactly what I had muttered.”
“Well now Miss-Fancy-Pants, aren’t you the fine lady?” Mate said.
“I do beg your pardon, my name is not, never has been, never will be Miss Fancy Pants!” I uttered with as much dignity as I could muster.
“So babe, what is your name?”
“Did you call me, babe?”
“Nothin’ wrong with your hearin’, babe.” He was smiling.
“Have you seen a Boxer dog when it smiles, eeewww? And please do not ask me to describe what it does when it drools. I get quite faint even thinking about it.”
“My name, is Lady Tabitha, do not ever refer to me as Tabby, as I will refuse to acknowledge you have spoken! Are we clear on that point?”
“Sure thing, Lady T, happy to oblige.”
“You are an arrogant, ignorant boxer.”
“No shit Sherlock!”
“I refused to acknowledge his annoying presence any further, and rolled back over to my side, pointedly rude and hopefully effective.
“The calming effect of the secure Troll-fence allowed me to settle down and doze. I dreamed as always of ‘Yule. B. Siamese’ who resided next door, a delightful male and a fitting escort for a lady of my refined taste. He had recently begun chatting to me animatedly, a delightful conversationalist. I had hopes of furthering our relationship.
It had begun to rain, the feel of moisture on my face awoke me with a start, I lay there and opened my eyes to find myself nose to snout with the dribbling drooling DOG.”
“AAArrHHHHhgg!” I screamed in terrified surprise. “My God, how did you get through the gate?”
The fool was actually laughing. At me!
When he regained control he said,”I jumped the fence.”
“I was aghast as this was my safe-haven. Is nothing sacred?”
“So Lady T babe, ya wanna play?”
“What would you like for me to play DOG…? Bach?
“Yeees … I rather thought you’d respond that way.”
“Hmm, my point exactly. Do go away, you cretinous canine.”
“Lady T, I do luvs the way you talk, but if I knew what you was sayin’ I don’t think I’d like it quite so much.”
“Well then why don’t you ask that … that, dare I say it… human, to translate for you dear boy.”
“Just how long do you and your h… do you and he intend remaining in my residence?”
“Read my lips, how—long—are—you—going—to—be—here?”
“Hey, why didn’t ya say that in the first place? I’m gonna be living here, all the time. Isn’t that good? I’ll just bet we end up great pals.”
“Dear boy, you are obviously suffering from some form of delusion. Firstly, you cannot be going to live here. I, live here. Secondly, the chance of us becoming great friends is, at best impossible.”
“Nope, not about the livin’ here part anyways. Your humans is goin’ someplace called America, for one of those family emergency thingy’s, they is gonna be gone for a spell. Seems their young’ns about to have her first litter. So my human and me is gonna be lookin’ after the place. That means you too, Miss-Fancy-pants.”
“Any moment now I shall awaken and discover that you are but a nightmare, a figment of my imagination, you will vanish, never to return.”
“Duh! Am I still here?”
“Geez, you got yourself one sweet temper, aint ya?”
“You have not even begun to see that side of my personality DOG.”
“AAARRRGGGHH! ENOUGH! I am left with no option. My dear cousin is stopping by this very afternoon; he of course will offer me his unhesitating assistance. You have no idea what you are in store for. He will undoubtedly set you straight about just who is in charge of whom here.”
“My cousin is stopping by for a chat; he will be delighted to meet you.”
“Why is you smirking?”
“Then you must be in terrible pain, you might need more fiber.”
“Do not speak. Not one more obnoxious, ridiculous, nerve-shattering word.
Ah, at last, my dear dear cousin has arrived.”
“Holy shit! What the hell sort of cat is that? He’s as big as a damn horse!”
“Grigori-Ivanovich-Tiger-Woodski is a feline, dear boy, a Siberian Tiger.”
“What the hell did you say his name is?”
“T’is an honorable name, Grigori-Ivanovich-Tiger-Woodski. He is newly arrived in this country.”
“Somethin’s ringin’ my bells about that name, ain’t he famous for somethin’? Man, I ain’t never seen a cat that big! Where the hell’s he from?”
“Why’s he rushin’?”
“Because he was born Russian.”
“Why was he born rushin’? How did his poor momma cope with that?”
“Oh dear heaven, why would his mother have a problem with him being born Russian?”
“I’ve heard that can be real tricky.”
“What pray tell can be really tricky?”
“Bein’ born rushin’. Damnit! It’s bad for the blood presha.”
“It means, sh…never you mind!”
“I will attempt to explain this in words of small syllables. Grigori—was—born—in—Russia.”
“So what did rush hour have to do with his poor momma’s suffering?”
“WHAT SUFFERING? YOU CRETIN!”
“Havin him born Godamned rushin’ you, you,–furball!”
“Not a chance, sweet pea!”
“AAARRRGGGHHH! Grigori, I beg of you, I plead with you, talk to the cretinous canine, before your beloved cousin has a total breakdown!”
“Hello, puppy doggski.”
“Say hi, your enormous self, Greg-baby.”
“Please to translate, what iski, Greg-baby?”
“Means you is cool, my man!”
“Nyet, is not coolski, is hotski. Siberia is coolski.”
“You want I should call ya sigh-beer-iya?”
“Whatever toots-ya-horn, Greg-baby!”
“Hey Greg-baby you is getting the hang of speachyfyin’ real quick.”
“No sweatski, puppy dogski. We be comrades da?”
“Duh! So, Greg-baby, my main man, you wanna beer?”
“Nyet! Drink vodka. Then beer. Da?”
“Duh! Is that vodka good stuff?”
“Da, is strong. You strong, you drink. You not strong, you call me Grigori Ivanovich Tiger-Woodski. You strong, we be comrades, da?”
“Duh! Lead me to the vodka my very large, er, um…cat?”
“home, home on the raaange, hic, where the dear an the antelope plaaaay, hic, never is heard a diishcouragin’ word, hic, and we eats the little varmints each daaaa-yski, hic, heheheheh.”
“Oh My God! You are both drunk!”
“No shitski sherlockski”
“Grigori, no! No! No! Grigori, my dear, dear cousin, this just will not do!
“I beg your pardon.”
“You call me Greg-baby…all rightski.”
“Never, not now, not later, not ever!”
“Oh, no, no, no, no, how can this have eventuated? What have you done to my beloved cousin? You monster. You reproachable oath, you, you, peasant! You DOG!”
“Say what? What are you gettin’ your knickers in a twist about this time Lady T. You wanted old Greg-baby and me to be friend’s dinya? Hmmm? Hee hee hee!”
“Why, you unconscionable, despicable, conniving, treacherous…”
“You getting a little hot under the collar there Lady T?”
“Who could blame me, of course I am; in fact, I feel quite faint! I may swoon!”
“We can’t have that now can we, Greg-baby? Howz about we test our little theory about now? Bein’ as she’s so hot an all.”
“Good ideaski, Puppy comradski. We take care of little promblemski for cousin catski… Da?”
“Duh! Now that is my kinda thinkin’. On three?”
“Well I’ll be damned…! Can you still hears her under water?”
“Me neither, heh heh, there goes that theory. You sure she kin swim?”
“Duh! Oh lookit, there she is…Paws! Mwha ha ha ha!”
“Not pauseki yetski dogski.”
“Duh, whatever! Hey Greg-baby, does she look grateful to you?”
“We might be best doin’ a little of that rushin’ you is so good at?”
“Duh! What does ya feel like playin’ now Greg-baby?”
“Tchaikovsky, 1812 Overture. Da?”
“Duh! Was that a good year for vodka?”
“All year’s good years for Vodka, Da.”
“Duh already! Hey, I has been meanin’ to ask ya Greg Tiger-Woodsky-baby, does you play golf?
“Gulf? Nyet, not from gulf, am Russian!”
“Where are ya rushin’?”
“All of me am Russian!”
“What the hellski was thatski?
“Sounds like ‘Siam’ just got invaded by ‘Persia!’
“Your little cousin has moved in next door.”
“Dah-svee-dah-nyah, cousin pussy-catski!”
“Duh! Ya think we should help ‘Siam’ negotiate for ‘Persian’ surrender?”
“They gotski—poolski? Hehe.”
“Greg-baby, you is my kinda cat!”
I recently posted ‘It’s A Guy Thing” and being the fairest of people, of course I need to express the viewpoints of the ‘Opposing team.’
Thus we come to “It’s A Girl Thing.”
Let’s take a look at a fairly typical “Girl’s Night Out.” An Ancient, revered, and oft’ misunderstood ritual.
Picture this … Location … A Singles Bar in a Big city, anywhere.
WHEN … Every Saturday night. Unless said Saturday night occurred in conjunction with a full moon. When all the smartest of bars remained shuttered and closed.
Paramedics? … On stand by.
Cops? … They’ll wait and see how this one pans out.
Welcome to ‘Tabitha Tabbies’ Girl’s night out.
The Girls Night Out is an ancient mating ritual, oft’ misunderstood. The premise being that one of the clan is tying the ribbon soon. She is leaving the clan to begin a clan of her own. To celebrate they band together and hunt en-masse. Their prey? Must be male and preferably breathing.
I’ll be your tour guide for the evening. Don’t hope for David Attenborough, and you wont be disappointed. Whenever necessary I’ll translate the girl/guy text-speak into a language that hopefully even men can understand.
Things you need to know to help the visual imagery along …
You need to be aware that these locations have invisible wall of separation; AKA ‘Keep your ass in your own space, bitch!‘
Each segment of the room houses it’s own clearly definable group.
Thus we have … Group one: The girls label them as ‘The Desperate and Dateless.’ The guys label them “A Sure Thing”
Group two: The girls label them as ‘We clearly don’t belong here.’ The guys label them ” Reconstructions.”
Group three: The girls label them ‘The Kindy Kids’. The guys label them as “The FORBIDDEN ZONE.”
Lets briefly visit each group one by one. Listen in to one of the conversations … and the translation.
Please be aware that as the translator I am provided my non-watered-down drinks for free.
“Oh my god, it’s gonna be one of those nights! Look who just strutted her reconstructed ass through the door.” Felicity Furball hissed her displeasure.
Translation! (Two drinks in) Oh god I have to get the name of her surgeon! Her ass looks seriously amazing.
“Dahling Katrina! It’s so wonderful to see you! You’ve been gone for weeks. I’ve missed you.” Felicity purred out the words. “You look so well rested.”
Translation! Oh, crap, don’t sit here! I haven’t had a botox update for weeks..
Air kisses erupt at the table and the selfie pandemic begins.
Meanwhile over at GROUP two, at the “We clearly don’t belong here.” table, Miss -Directed was airing her views on the gathering. She also gave her new boobs an airing as well.
“Wow! Eyes left, kittens. We have dream candy on approach to the bar!’ she squealed with happy anticipation, being careful not to smile too hugely less the laughter lines give her the look of ‘Yoda’ on steroids.
Translation. (Four drinks in) I saw him first, so keep your grubby paws off!
“He seems quite … er … young-ish.” said Miss -Apprehension.
Translation (Six drinks in) “I’m old enough to be hish … older shister. Oh all right then, aunt!”
“Don’t be ridiculous. It’s just the lighting.” Said everyone else at the table.
Transhlashun = (Stopped counting drinks a while back) “don’t bring the resht of the group down, bitch. Let ush have our fantashy!
And the selfie pandemic continued.
Ah, then we come to Group three. The ‘Kindy Kids” enclave.
Where, everyone talked at once, sometimes even face to face,(Gasp!) but way more often they would text. Most of the conversations went something like this,
“So, I’m like, what the? (Insert confused face … 😕)thus. What’s with the guys here? They look, like, you know, seriously old.” Says Miss Prudence.
Translayersh … Yeah … so they shaid , I’m utterly confushed! Can anyone exshplain to me why the guysh here are shignificantly older than ush?
“Some of them are like, you know, not too bad.” (Insert Smiling face)😊 thus, “Says Miss Conception.
Trans whatsis! = “I dishagree (But not strenuoushly,) ’cause I did not utilishe um youtilishe … I didn’t ushe a (Insert Angry Fashe)😠
“You’re kidding me, right? They are like in their twenties or worse!” (Insert wheelchair symbol ♿)
Yeah, what she shaid = “I think you’re joking. You mush be! You’re eyeshight clearly needsh checking. (Insert Optometrist symbol) or as close as you can get. 😷
Much laughter is of course shared at the very thought of someone in their twenties being out so late.
And then = Lol, lol, lol,😆😆😆 rotflmao. 🤣
“Oh, wait! Look at the one in the Armani threads. He’s like, to die for!” Said Miss Directed (Insert Angel) 👼
Yup = “Jush a moment! The man wearing the Armani suit ish devilishly attractive! (Insert picture of the impossibly attractive Mr J. Depp) just because this is my blog and I’m allowed to.)
Much groaning ensues at such an obvious gaffe.
So they all do the Sigh! thing. I can’t translate it, but it’s you know, kinda like the sound you make when your partner at the time says something really diabolically stupid. Yeah sort of a whooshing, hissing noise.
“Baby-girl, what are you thinkin‘??? (Insert laughing face)😛 One of his x’s would kill you!(insert Angry Face)😠 🌟 These hotshots don’t live in the real world. I’m like, serious. (insert serious face) “😖
I now have 911 on speed dial (Which would do me no good whatsoever ’cause our code down here in Australia for Emergency responders is 000)=
Anywaysh … “What the hell, are you batshit crazy? I’m not kidding around here. Have you seen his ex?
“Oh. I’m like, so, you know, embarrassed. (Insert embarrassed face) Says Miss-Directed😱.Yadda yadda = “I’ll approach him later when this lot are gone.
“It’s like, okay. Whatever? So, you DO know how to pick out the married ones, right?”
‘slayshun. = “You re forgiven. It doeshn’t matter. Please reasshure me that you would recognishe a married man if you shaw one.”
“By their look of abject misery?”
Um … = I threw that one in just ’cause it made me laugh.
“I’m like, serious, girlfriend! You like, need to look for the white-place where their wedding bands were, up till, like, an hour ago … unless you know, like maybe the poor thing’s just been ditched.”
Uh-oh = (Insert Shtern Face) 😡But not your mother’s. “I kid you not! Theshe guysh take off their wedding ringsh and ‘ccordingly exposhe the thin band of white where the shun failed to penetr… um shine. You are in deepesh-do-do if they are newlywedsh, and have yet to have worn the ring long enough for a mark to appear. Sigh. Unlesh the guy is badly on the rebound and looksh utterly helplesh, and then your assh is hish!
“Eeew! That is so, like, creepy. My dad, like, would not do something like that; and he’s like, you know, married.”
“To your Mom?”
“Like, I know, right. For the second time, even. Go figure!”
So, yeah … “I’m pissed off about it.
“Wow. That is, like, seriously different.”
“Promise me you’ll never tell, like, anyone.”
“Oh I would never like do that.” (Says she already composing a Facebook post guaranteed to get hundreds of you know … likes.)
Spontaneous outbreak of hugs and much air-kissing ensues. And then of course the ritual of attending the bathroom en-masse begins. The table is temporarily abandoned. With the least popular and most unattractive girl is left behind at the table to ‘watch’ the bags. Men have yet to affix a suitably detrimental title to this phenomenon. They sink into David Attenborough mode and whisper of magic animalistic rituals that they are never permitted access to.
Ah, yes indeed, the girls night out.
The paramedics warmed up their ambulances.
The cops called in sick.
And as for the guys, they held bedroom auditions, knowing well in advance that nobody here would be in need of a call back.
Those fools that breached the ‘Forbidden Zone’ are still seeking bail.
My observations of life are often expressed with my rather dark humor. I enjoy helping folks take a look at something serious, expressed my way.
I originally wrote this around eight-years-ago.
A conversation I overheard recently forced me to recall it. It also amused me to recollect that when I first posted this all those years ago I had some interesting reactions, some of the women that commented were initially outraged … Until they discovered that a woman had written it. Then it became suddenly acerbic and clever. Some of the men that commented, initially laughed and shared it … Until they discovered that a woman had written it. Fascinating, yes?
Besides which, it’s just sadly funny, and you don’t need any damned permission to laugh.
It’s ‘A Guy Thing’… guaranteed to contain NO Political-Correctness whatsoever.
“It’s A Guy Thing”
It’s very short … trust me.
“What the … ?”
So yeah, I’m an elephant. And yes, I am up a tree.
Okay, granted I look a bit out of place.
Well yeah, okay! I look fuckin’ ridiculous. I could go all ‘Alpha’ male and say I’m a sniper. But you guys aren’t gonna buy that crap, ’cause I’m not dressed in black.
And, no, Smart ass, I do not have a personality disorder, in fact I’ll have you know that my friends tell me often that I don’t have a personality at all.
Huh? What? Now wait just a damned minute … !
You want me to explain just how I got here! You’re shittin’ me, right?
Okay, alright already, but remember, you asked.
So, it was a normal Friday evening, the guys and I had finished pullin’ a long shift up at the logging camp, and we headed down to our favorite watering hole to toss back a few dozen cold ones.
The Jungle Bar was in full swing. We had all had seven or eight Jungle juices and were just starting to hang loose.
I was into a deep and meaningless conversation with Gerry Giraffe, aka the Big G, we were laughing it up big time. All the usual suspects were bullshitting about the size of their trunks, while the Big G and I were shootin’ the breeze about basketball.
We ignored the well dressed cats in the corner, they were listening to Streisand and crying a lot.
So, there we were doin’ our usual Friday night “guy” things, when in came the Trio from hell. I shit you not. Picture this, three of the ugliest, noisiest, annoying-est females, on this, or any other planet.
Harriet, Hesta, and Hermione Hyena … man I’m tellin’ ya, these females had faces uglier than the southern end of a north-bound Baboon; three faces that could cause ya to have temporary nausea. Are you with me so far?
They came busting into the joint screaming and laughing , and laughing and screaming and screami’ … well you get the general idea. They were hyster-ectomy-erical.
Or some other female P.M.S thing.
Anyways, they started on about somethin’ called a Soo-Nar-Me.
Hey, I’m not adverse to that Sushi stuff; ya know, it ain’t too bad. But, man they were carryin’ on like this Soo-Nar-Me stuff was to die for.
So, we did what any normal red-blooded males would do when confronted by three hysterical females; we ignored them.
Did I mention they were ugly?
Alrighty then, so we got back down to business and “A good time” was being had by all. Personally I think that is a perfectly ridiculous name for a female, but hey, whatever floats ya boat.
As it turns out, ignoring the ugly sisters was perhaps not the wisest choice we could have made. ‘Cause next thing we know is we are all surfing without benefit of boards!
Man, I mean this was the biggest fucking wave I have ever seen.
I up-periscoped the trunk and here I landed, in a big tree, with a fuckin’ huge eagles nest built in, filled with an entire restaurants worth of enormous eggs.
Did I mention that I swear? A lot.
I shit you not, my friends. I’m in a fuckin’ fix. And then some.
I sent my girlfriend Essie up to the logging camp, with orders to bring back a crane. Essie is just so beautiful, she has the biggest brownest eyes. I forced myself to remember that when she returned with her pretty trunk curled gently around the skinniest, long-legged-est, most pissed off bird I have ever seen. Man his feathers were ruffled.
Yeah, yeah, Okay! Sure, it was a Crane; but c’mon, how bright did she have to be?
Did I mention that Essie is beautiful?
So, It looks like I have some time to kill. I been thinkin’ that I maybe need to do a minor re-think on some of my attitudes.
Firstly, understand that seriously ugly females have their place in the world. Yeah, your place, his place, anywhere but my place.
Aw hell, poor things. But they’ve gotta be good at somethin’, right?
Hey, there’s a thought! Doh!
Secondly. I should maybe learn some important words and phrases in a couple of foreign languages; uh … such as, ‘Police,’ ‘Fire-Brigade,’ ‘Ambulance,’ ‘Pour me a beer,’ ‘My place or yours,’ ‘I’ll still respect you in the morning,’ and, ‘Of course I love you.’ You know; the guy thing stuff.
Thirdly. Find out what Show-van-ist means. I think it’s German.
Fourthly. I should maybe try and listen when someone seems to be upset about somethin’- even if they are ugly.
Oh-my-God! The damned eggs are hatchin’, I’m gonna be a daddy! How the hell do I explain this one to Essie the crane-fetcher?
Oh please! … Now what in the hell is goin’ on down on ground level?
There is some skinny-assed chicken down there, runnin’ around flappin’ his wings and fricasseein his ass, screechin’ “The sky is falling!”
What the fuck?
Anybody out there got an umbrella?
Some days it just ain’t worth getting out of my or anybody else’s bed. Even if they are ugly.
So! When I’m bailed out of the naughty corner I’ll write my next post.
In the interest of fairness, it will be titled … “It’s A Girl Thing.”
Every so often on my journey through this crazy world I have the urgent need to write ‘off the wall’ crazy stuff, just for the hell of it. I’ve decided to reserve a special page on my blog; the “Soooz Says Stuff Page” The following is the result of one such trip into mayhem. The original Limmerick goes (I believe) as follows.
“I’m not the pheasant plucker
I’m the pheasant plucker’s son
I’m only plucking pheasants
till the pheasant plucker comes.”
Then we have my expanded alternate version:
WARNING! Dangerous when spoken in company … unless you are completely sober … and are in possession of teeth … preferably your own.
I am a peasant who plucks pheasants
Morning noon and night.
T’is no easy task this pheasant plucking
and, I just can’t get it right.
I pluck ‘em fast; I pluck em slow
Till I’m flat out on the floor
Doesn’t matter what I do,
there always is one more.
Now a peasant’s life’s no pleasant picnic
I truly kid you not.
But plucking clucking pheasants
Is the only job I’ve got.
I don’t really understand it
Perhaps I try too hard
Chasing pheasants to be plucked
Out in the plucking yard
The farmer’s kids stand watching
And laughing till they cry,
If I could be offended
I would be mortified.
But “a pluck’s a pluck” my mom says
And brother she should know
She pleasantly plucks pheasants
Everywhere she goes.
She is the princess of pheasant plucking
Her fame is world renowned
She plucks her way from shore to shore
And sleeps on duck plucked down.
She can pluck while seated,
She plucks standing on her head
I’ve heard tell she also plucks
Whilst lying in her bed.
Matters not which way I pluck ‘em
I cannot match her score
I just don’t understand it,
I really pluck ‘em raw.
After all this pleasant pheasant plucking
You think I’d quit the game
But no, not me, I go right on plucking
Till they all look the same.
At end of day when I’m plucked out
I can’t even raise a peasant smile
I have a drink at the Plucker Inn
After I walk a country mile.
My friends all gather round me,
and give me drinks for free,
they kindly ask about my mother’s
latest, pheasant plucking spree.
One day as I was plucking pheasants
In my usual plucking place A stranger came up screeching!
Cursing loudly in my face.
“My god! What are you doing?”
Is what she asked of me,
“I’m a peasant plucking pheasants,”
said I, “as you can plainly see.”
“Are you a fool?” she cried aloud.
“You haven’t got it right.”
“Don’t tell me that fair lady,
‘cause I pluck pheasants day and night”.
She slapped my pleasant peasant face
Then she screamed out fit to burst.
“If you’re going to pluck a pheasant, peasant You’re meant to kill it first!”
I can hear you groaning from all the way down here in Oz! … You were warned! 😊😊😊
Yes, I did say privilege. Why? … Because it must be so! Motherhood must be regarded as the greatest joy of your combined life experiences.
We hand out special licenses to folks wishing to drive a car. A car is a potentially lethal weapon.
A child created and raised by unfit parents is also … a potentially lethal weapon.
I have written much about the woman that gave birth to me. For that is all she ever was. I spent many, many, soulless, and empty years hoping to find a different, a more palatable and convenient truth. For I so badly needed to believe, that She was damaged, and accordingly had no control over what she caused to come into being.
That thought kept me reasonably sane, in a violent, pain-filled world … that hated world, that world that made no sense to me at all.
But the years have peeled back the blinders that I used for safety, and I have come unwillingly to believe, that rather than an illness that caused her to inflict pain, I was instead her living sacrifice, to be punished upon the ‘altar’ of the train-wreck of her own life.
In order to accept that, I needed to lose the hate. Whilst I’ll never be indifferent, to even the mere mention of her name … that bitter bile of hatred has been tempered over time. Not ever fully understanding what caused her to inflict such vile pain, is simply now just something I have learned to bear. Losing the hate I have accomplished. Forgiving her is a whole other journey I have at last been at least willing to begin.
The joy of giving birth will never leave my mind. Into my freshly awakening soul, a precious girl-child was permitted entry. I have yet to feel a more all-encompassing need to protect another living being. For the very first time in my life I was grateful to have been born a woman.
The greatest love I’ve ever known erupted into my unprepared world.
Her laughter and that boundless lust for life colored my planet with sunshine … as did the never ending fear that I would somehow let her down. That reflected in much darker corners in sombre tones.
My husband and I created ‘Magic’ for her newly awakened self. Her fathers’ loving parents, his brothers and sisters, nieces and nephews all became our willing accomplices, as they fell captive to her joyous laughter. We reconstructed ‘Neverland’ and housed her as the reigning princess within its seemingly impenetrable walls.
All those marvelous days we’d celebrate with the ‘Magic’ element firmly in its place.
Christmas, and Birthdays, Easter egg-hunts, and Halloween. We never granted any excuse to miss a single one.
We sheltered her like a fragrant Frangipani, never allowing even a hint of the cold touch of frost to damage those tender flowers.
And when unheralded, the end of the reign of the King and Queen ruling together united … stormed into her life, at the as yet untested age of eighteen; that precious ivory tower melted like chocolate into untried sands.
She staggered into a world she was unprepared for, for we’d never handed her the weapons or the skill with which to use them.
We lost some years she and I, whilst each of us learned to both grow, and let go. Time was an ally then, and softly the healing leaves were sown.
Please know we’ve journeyed far in those intervening years, and know too, that life is joyous now, and we share our tears our truths and fears.
She asked me to be there, in that precious, priceless, unforgettable time as she gave birth to her son. How lucky am I to be so loved.
My Child’s Child.
He came screaming into his world two weeks earlier than expected. My child’s child … my grandson. I had the utter joy of seeing that look on her face as she craned to see and experience that ageless ‘falling in love with your first child’ moment.
We live together now, my daughter, my grandson and I. She has done me the great honor of asking me to assist her to raise her son.
Wise beyond her years she knew that living with my grandson’s daddy would only end badly for all three of them.
I’ve watched on proudly as she works tirelessly with the little ones’ father to be as utterly fair to each other as is humanly possible.
You will never hear one negative word about him. NOT in the house where his son lives, and grows. The young one loves his daddy unconditionally, which is as it should be for now. My child, grants, to her child, the right to ask questions, and she answers them with as much honesty as an almost five year old can handle. She gives him the ‘fairy tales’ with a hefty dose of magic …. but she also reads to him the darker ones, age appropriate to him.
Which does he prefer? I’m smiling here. For as long as there is no blood shown, or discussed, he’ll choose the dark stuff, every time. He’s relentless in the joy that he sheds when he’s just being a boy.
My daughter yesterday repeated something she says on occasion, which I will never tire of hearing. “Mom, I had the happiest childhood of any kid ever.”
She gives to me freely the greatest compliment I have ever heard.
Her way of parenting is uniquely her own, she teaches and creates using magic, and world truths tempered by her own life experiences, and above all things her all encompassing and unconditional ability to show and give love.
We’ll make quite the proud trio on Sunday Mothers Day May 14th …. My Child … Her Child … and I.
I’m here and overjoyed to be so. I have so many marvelous reasons to celebrate.
I wish you happiness, and the ability to share it with people that you love, on that special day. I am, and will remain, forever grateful for the privilege of being graced with the title of “Mother”.
It is possibly the hardest earned and most rewarding of any title you may have been granted.
When I began writing my book, Letting Go into Perfect Love: Discovering the Extraordinary After Abuse, I thought I would simply tell my story. But as the words found paper, I realized that we all traverse a familiar terrain of joys and sorrows. Perhaps we have passed each other on our journeys.Figuratively or literally, we travel long distances in search of happiness,meaning, or love. We climb the highest mountains, we trek across the deserts,and we explore the ocean’s depths. We are restless until we find our heart’s desire.
My book is about how we craft our way through triumphs and tragedies, achievements and mistakes.Over the years, I have learned that we are never alone. Sometimes kind strangers or healers or friends show us the way, and sometimes we are visited by angels.
Inspiring and unforgettable, Letting Go into Perfect Love is a riveting account of a journey through the terror of domestic violence to a faith that transforms all. As a college administrator, Gwendolyn M. Plano lived her professional life in a highly visible and accountable space–but as a wife and mother, behind closed doors, she and her family experienced unpredictable threat. The statistics are staggering–every 9 seconds in the United States, a woman is assaulted or beaten–but to Gwen, this was her secret; it was her shame. When her husband eventually turned his brutality on her son, she knew she could no longer remain silent.
Alternately heart-wrenching and joyful, this is a story of triumph over adversity–one woman’s uplifting account of learning how to forgive the unforgiveable, recover her sense of self, bring healing into her family, and honor the journey home. Accompanied by glimpses of celestial beings, Gwen charts a path through sorrow to joy–and ultimately, writes of the one perfect love we all seek.
The story that unfolds is not a blow-by-blow account of savagery hidden within a twenty-five-year marriage; rather, it is a walk through innocent dreams betrayed–to courage found. “Tragedy spares no one;” Gwen points out, “it just courts each of us differently. One way or another, it finds a path into our hearts, and there we do battle with the intruder.” As a survivor who came out of her unhealthy relationship determined to start over, Gwen artfully depicts the challenges of balancing the obligations of motherhood and career with her family’s healing process, while offering hope to anyone facing monumental challenges.
Integral to Gwen’s journey is her faith. Because of her Catholic upbringing, she struggles with the scandal of divorce, but finally makes her peace. When her daughter reveals her molestation by clergy, however, her fragile sense of serenity dissolves. We walk with Gwen as she tries to make sense of this horror. The agony experienced by the entire family is devastatingly palpable. Against all odds, Gwen emerges confident of her faith and begins to see the threads of meaning in even the darkest moments.
This is a book for all. But, for those who have been in a destructive relationship, Gwen’s story will be heartbreakingly familiar. For those who have been spared such diminishment, it will provide insight into the often misunderstood phenomenon of domestic violence. Since one in every four women will experience such threat in her lifetime, understanding that murky world may provide the reader with the skills needed to help his or her sister or friend or neighbor. Whether victim or friend, though, readers will be inspired by the author’s courage and ultimate resolution of her predicament. And, you may see your own challenges a little differently.
MY REVIEW: 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 Powerful, Provocative and potentially life-altering!
Each of us come to the place where we will read this work from such diverse directions. We will each interpret and attempt to define it in our many alternate ways. I bring to this reading a history of abuse; accordingly my belief system was shakily formed and has remained under question for much of my life.
When I read the blurb, and several of the very eloquent reviews I almost stopped … I wanted to run like hell. My guts were telling me I’d feel every nuance of pain … my guts were uncannily right.
Author Gwen Plano has not simply invited me to read this book, from the opening pages, this author compelled me to read it. I figured if this woman has the courage to write it, then at the very least I should demand of myself the courage to read it.
Author Plano took me firmly by the heart and guided me through the occasional nightmarish quality of her life. Her honesty shook me, and I rejoiced to find an author unafraid to show herself as imperfect, willing to lay her soul bare in an effort to help others that may well be undergoing a similar horrendous, fearful and ultimately life-altering journey.
I have not yet experienced the great joy that comes from trusting so implicitly. However now, and largely thanks to the gift of author Gwen Planos writing, I have at last, again begun to question. It is a powerful work indeed that can have caused that to eventuate. Please … do yourselves a favor … read this compelling book and open your heart. Take this journey with Author Gwen Plano and perhaps come to a new understanding of just what true courage can do.