The Letter

“My dearest Martha,

I’m writing to you to tell you something I should’ve years ago. I’m sure you probably hate me and quite frankly I don’t blame you. I hate myself, too. If I know you the way I think I do, you’re probably saying I’m feeling sorry for myself. I’m not, I’m really not.

I know I’ve been a useless father. Martha, I’m sorry. There is no excuse for the way I behaved and I won’t try provide you with one. I will, however, leave you with this one last secret. Something that has been passed down from father to daughter for hundreds of years. It’s all I can leave you that is of worth. What I say now, you tell no one but your eldest son. In the year 1500 B.C. a peasant farmer got lost in a gorge while traveling and came across a secret that had been hidden away from the world. The farmer never spoke to it, but his young daughter. He made her promise to tell no one but her eldest son. He believed that only a man would have the strength to go back and find what he saw. She, however, had no sons. Instead, she told her eldest daughter as her father had told his. As the years has gone by all that remains is one word: Tydall. I have never been able to figure it out and it has never been written down. This will be the first time mention of this secret has been recorded. It is with this in mind that I tell you to burn it once you have read this.

Martha, I know you have no children. No husband and are dedicated to your work at the library. Your knowledge base is wider than most and if anyone can find uncover this, I know it will be you.

I don’t expect you to believe me, but I am hoping you will trust your grandfather. Go ask him. Mention Tydall and he will tell you what he knows.

Whatever you may believe, I have always been proud of you, my dearest daughter.

Your father, Arthur.”

Let me know if you like this in the contents and if you want me to continue. 🙂

God bless

New Platforms

Hello all my darlings. You will see I’ve added Patreon and Ko-fi buttons onto my page. If you can, I would really appreciate any donations to help further my writing. I am not charging a lot on Patreon. It’s only $3 and my Ko-fi page you are able to donate however much you can. When I started my blog, from my very first post, I made a promise to myself (and in consequence you) that I would never charge any fee to subscribe to my blog. I want all of you to be able to enjoy my articles. It’s a promise I will keep to you. I, however, do need your help in supporting my writing. Please, if you can donate, even if it’s just a small Ko-fi (Haha) I would really appreciate it. I am busy posting my book the Stranger onto Patreon and I will also be giving you updates on my writing as well as a look into what my life is like on Ko-fi. I want you to know me as much as I want to know you. I am posting daily on Ko-fi and every week I release a chapter of Stranger on Patreon for you to enjoy. I will still be posting here as I have, only I may not be able to post full articles every day. On Patreon I will be posting my own poems and on Ko-fi I will tell you a little bit about my day as well as what I am mulling over that day.

I have now seen that there are just under 1700 avidReaders and I want to welcome all my new darling avidReaders. I love you darlings and I will continue to provide all sorts of weird and wonderful topics for you to enjoy.

God bless all of you 🙂 Have a lovely weekend

“The Cotter’s Saturday Night” by Robert Burns

My lov’d, much honour’d, much respected friend!
No mercenary bard his homage pays;
With honest pride, I scorn each selfish end,
My dearest meed, a friend’s esteem and praise:
To you I sing, in simple Scottish lays,
The lowly train in life’s sequester’d scene;
The native feelings strong, the guileless ways;
What Aiken in a cottage would have been;
Ah! tho’ his worth unknown, far happier there I ween!

Your poem of the day. For those who are wondering, a “cotter” was a peasant in 19th century Scotland who was allowed to use cot/cottage. Hence the term “cotter” 🙂

God bless you all my darling avidReaders. Have a lovely weekend 🙂 I’m going to be spending time with mine. I suggest you do the same. Take some time to appreciate the people you love.

Anger by Daniel Luke Nelson

Anger fills my heart and soul
Anger takes a mighty toll
Anger lessens but can never leave
Anger you hope to never receive,
Anger stays forever within
Anger acts with the might of all sin
Anger is deadly to all around
Anger gets mad at the thought of sound
Anger is the thoughts in my head
Anger that’s mine all should dread
Anger for me is different from you
Anger you see tells me what to do
Anger will sit and whisper in my ear
Anger he sits and tells me all that you fear,

Anger…
He is here
He’s here to stay
Anger is the hole
In which we lay
Anger is
And Anger will
Always be with us

He is in me, and he is in you
He can make you do
What he wants you to
Anger will make you
Make you cry
Anger can make you
Want to die
Anger can make you
Go insane
Anger….. … A blood filled rain
No more anger
No more…..
Walk to the bright light
Shinning through that door…
Not knowing what’s in store
But even then
Anger lives on
But you… nevermore

I have been thinking a lot about how anger can wound someone and I realized that if we could make love our automatic response instead of anger how different this world would be! I read this and was moved.

God bless all of you, my darling avidReaders!

The Vision Poem

So this guy comes up to me and says,
“What’s the vision? What’s the big idea?” 
I open my mouth and words come out like this…

The Vision?

The vision is JESUS – obsessively, dangerously, undeniably Jesus.
The vision is an army of young people.
You see bones? I see an army. And they are FREE from materialism.

They laugh at 9-5 little prisons. They could eat caviar on Monday and crusts on Tuesday. They wouldn’t even notice. They know the meaning of the Matrix, the way the west was won.

They are mobile like the wind, they belong to the nations. They need no passport. People write their addresses in pencil and wonder at their strange existence.
They are free yet they are slaves of the hurting and
dirty and dying.

What is the vision?

The vision is holiness that hurts the eyes. It makes children laugh and adults angry. It gave up the game of minimum integrity long ago to reach for the stars. It scorns the good and strains for the best. It is dangerously pure.

Light flickers from every secret motive, every private conversation. It loves people away from their suicide leaps, their Satan games. This is an army that will lay down its life for the cause. A million times a day its soldiers choose to lose that they might one day win the great ‘Well done’ of faithful sons and daughters.

Such heroes are as radical on Monday morning as Sunday night. They don’t need fame from names. Instead they grin quietly upwards and hear the crowds chanting
again and again:

“COME ON!”

And this is the sound of the underground. The whisper of history in the making. Foundations shaking. Revolutionaries dreaming once again. Mystery is scheming in whispers. Conspiracy is breathing. This is the sound of the underground

And the army is discipl(in)ed. Young people who beat their bodies into submission.
Every soldier would take a bullet for his comrade at arms. The tattoo on their back boasts, “for me to live is Christ and to die is gain”

Sacrifice fuels the fire of victory in their upward eyes. Winners. Martyrs. Who can stop them? Can hormones hold them back? Can failure succeed? Can fear scare them or death kill them?

And the generation prays like a dying man with groans beyond talking, with warrior cries, sulphuric tears and with great barrow loads of laughter!

Waiting. Watching. 24 – 7 – 365.

Whatever it takes they will give: Breaking the rules. Shaking mediocrity from its cosy little hide. Laying down their rights and their precious little wrongs, laughing at labels, fasting essentials. The advertisers cannot mould them. Hollywood cannot hold them. Peer-pressure is powerless to shake their resolve at late night parties before the cockerel cries.

They are incredibly cool, dangerously attractive inside.

On the outside? They hardly care. They wear clothes like costumes to communicate and celebrate but never to hide. Would they surrender their image or their popularity? They would lay down their very lives – swap seats with the man on death row – guilty as hell. A throne for an electric chair.

With blood and sweat and many tears, with sleepless nights and fruitless days, they pray as if it all depends on God and live as if it all depends on them.

Their DNA chooses JESUS. (He breathes out, they breathe in.) Their subconscious sings. They had a blood transfusion with Jesus. Their words make demons scream in shopping centres.

Don’t you hear them coming? Herald the weirdos! Summon the losers and the freaks. Here come the frightened and forgotten with fire in their eyes. They walk tall and trees applaud, skyscrapers bow, mountains are dwarfed by these children of another dimension.

Their prayers summon the hounds of heaven and invoke the ancient dream of Eden.

And this vision will be. It will come to pass; it will come easily; it will come soon. How do I know? Because this is the longing of creation itself, the groaning of the Spirit, the very dream of God. My tomorrow is his today. My distant hope is his 3D. And my feeble, whispered, faithless prayer invokes a thunderous, resounding, bone-shaking great ‘Amen!’ from countless angels, from heroes of the faith, from Christ himself. And he is the original dreamer, the ultimate winner.

Guaranteed.

All rights for this poem go to #visionfilm.

God bless you all my fearless avidReaders!

The Mansion of My Childhood

By MO H. SAIDI

For Tristan

I

My father was tall, plump, old and cruel.
            When he was late returning home, we’d
                        joke that he’d been taken to the morgue.

A story teller, he often would say, God
            Loves good tales with happy endings:
                        The Holy Book’s stories, Layla and Majnun.

II

My grandfather was a bearded man.
            He looked like the Sistine God
                        His face gleamed with candor.

An ayatollah, he believed Allah is afflicted
            With insomnia no angel can cure—He’s
                        a riddle, a challenge for mankind, God’s

grace can be purchased in every bazaar.
            He’d say, “Don’t pray for me, do it for Him.
                        When He’s jaded, He may stage a deluge.”

III

My father would visit my grandfather
            once a month—the city was an hour’s drive
                        away. Grandfather had strong arms

But his legs were paralyzed.
            He had fully memorized the Book of Kings
                        and the Koran. For a good tip, I’d listen

to him for hours and the follow the lines.
            Only rarely did he err. He let me correct
                        the slips because I was his favorite grandson.

IV

My childhood house was a mansion
            I was the shortest kid on the block. They
                        all knew my name; I only the teacher’s.

When grandfather would visit us, he’d
            bring us softballs, candies, silver coins.
                        Even before his stroke, he was always weak

in his legs, would limp along and tire quickly.
            On his last visit, he struggled and wrote
Icannotcontrolmyhand, and he dropped the pen.

V

I would look at my father in awe.
            He was tall, strong and voracious
                        too old to live to see my diploma.

Loud and uncouth, he was a lamb
            under Mother’s shadow. To leave more
                        time for prayer, they both had forbidden chess,

reading or writing poetry in our house.
            I always dreamed to be a writer. They
                        preached that I should become a mullah.

We made peace: they burned the chess board
            and the pieces; I buried the Holy Book. As I
                        prepared to leave town, a call shook the house.

VI

I heard the unbearable news—my hero
was dead—we rushed to his hometown.
                        The city was confused. A black holiday.

The waves of men in black marched
            in the streets. His house teemed with mourners
                        waiting for the feast. The servants served

Bread, rice, and cheese. High on the roof
            the muezzin was hard at work with booming
                        calls. In the chaos of the funeral procession,

I muttered his favorite line as I looked
            at his open casket. Life is a mansion
                        of ice, how could I avoid the sun?

Your daily dose of poetry. God bless you all my darling avidReaders 🙂

Halloween: The Jack-o’-Lantern

Halloween or All Hallow’s Eve as it is known by many ancient European countries is something that is celebrated world over. Trick or treaters. Carving pumpkins. Horror movies. All these have the single goal of celebrating the scariest month of the year. This ancient tradition goes all the way back to the Celts who believed that on October 31 the spirits of the dead would return from the Netherworld to walk amongst the living. They dressed up in costumes in an attempt to scare away these apparitions. They believed that by offering gifts of food or decorating their houses with ghastly ornaments they would be able to ward off/appease the spirits. If these offerings were not acceptable or presented the inhabitants of the house would become cursed in various ways. There are other uses these spirits had, but for the purpose of this article I will be having a look at the origins of the Jack-o’-Lantern.

Where did this time-consuming activity first originate. Well, we’ve established above that this was originally Celtic festival. So, who better to know than the Celts?

The Celts never used pumpkins for their Jack-o’-Lanterns, their first Jack-o’-Lantern was used to refer to people. It was only thanks to Irish immigrants that the tradition of using pumpkins came to be practiced as there were no pumpkins in Ireland at the time. Before this came into practice, as far as 1663, Jack-o’-Lanterns referred to a man with a lantern or a night watchmen. A decade later, this came to refer to the mysterious eerie lights spotted over bogs, swamps and marshes at night. These lights came to possess many names jack-o’-lanterns, hinkypunks, hobby lanterns, corpse candles, fairy lights, will-o’-the-wisps and fool’s-fire. This is a by-product of oxidization when gases from decomposing plant matter comes into contact with heat or electricity.

Stingy Jack

Before this scientific discovery, however, the Irish thought up all manner of tales to explain this phenomena–they called him Stingy Jack. Often depicted as a blacksmith, this infamous character invited the devil for a drink. However Stingy Jack had no intention of paying the bill and managed to convince the devil to turn himself into a gold coin to settle the bill. Again, Jack tricked the devil and skipped out on the bill, putting the devil–along with a silver cross to keep him trapped–inside his pocket.

It did not end here Jack proceeded to trick the devil into another act where the devil had to climb a tree. On both occasions the devil was trapped and Jack made him promise not to seek revenge on his soul. So the devil did not, but instead of being allowed through Heaven’s gates as he intended, God forbade him. Jack was left with neither Heaven nor Hell to return to and so his soul was cursed to walk the earth. The devil, upon rejecting Jack’s entrance to hell, gave him a single coal to light his way. He then sent him off into the dark to find his own hell. He put this coal into a carved out a turnip and now wanders earth with it to this day.

The Irish believed that these eerie lights were Jack’s lantern as his lost soul wandered the countryside.

Where Is It Now?

This tradition has come a long way from the Celts all the way into the heart of the western world. It is only now starting to become a big thing in South Africa. In Britain children would trick their friends into thinking they were Stingy Jack and try and scare them. In Britain, this tradition spread to turnips, beets and potatoes that were carved out and stuffed with coal, wooden embers or candles. This done during their fall festival.

In 1800s America, the children used pumpkins to the same end making them more and more grotesque to increase the scare factor. By the end of the 19th century the Jack-o’-Lantern went from being a trick to being a seasonal decoration.

This practice has become a major holiday in America with thousands of children across the continent celebrating it by trick-or-treating.

I hope you enjoyed this as much as I did researching it. It’s a really fascinating legend.

God bless you all and I trust you will have a blessed day further 🙂

EDEN, THEN AND NOW

RUTH STONE

In ’29 before the dust storms
sandblasted Indianapolis,
we believed in the milk company.
Milk came in glass bottles.
We spread dye-colored butter,
now connected to cancer.
We worked seven to seven
with no overtime pay;
pledged allegiance every day,
pitied the starving Armenians.
One morning in the midst of plenty,
there were folks out of context,
who were living on nothing.
Some slept in shacks
on the banks of the river.
This phenomenon investors said
would pass away.
My father worked for the daily paper.
He was a union printer;
lead slugs and blue smoke.
He worked with hot lead
at a two-ton machine,
in a low-slung seat;
a green-billed cap
pulled low on his forehead.
He gave my mother a dollar a day.
You could say we were rich.
This was the Jazz Age.
All over the country
the dispossessed wandered
with their hungry children,
harassed by the law.
When the market broke, bad losers
jumped out of windows.
It was time to lay an elegant table,
as it is now; corporate paradise;
the apple before the rot caved in.
It was the same worm
eating the same fruit.
In fact, the same Eden.

Freedom

NABANITA KANUNGO

It would try to lisp a dumbness sometimes—
the language of welts rising slowly on the panes,
a cracked blur of riot-torn air,
confused which year it was.

The last time it made a sound was when
it crinkled on its way into a bin,
a great plot of justice. I wasn’t born, then;
my father was.

It must have been whole once,
for you could still conceive it like a dream,
a gloriously illegitimate thing, though;
until a country was torn out of its heart one day
and you saw its impaled ghost in the moon.

My grandfather told me we had slept so long
with a flag over us, we couldn’t run when
machetes poked us awake amidst still-dreaming heads
rolling in the streets like marbles struck in game.

There was nowhere to go and we went nowhere,
with its face slumped on our backs
and history books that said what had happened is the past,

until sixty years later, a community’s threats betraying
her voice, a poor nun requested me
to leave my month-old job in a convent
where I’d studied since childhood.

I keep trying to find its shape in photographs, old letters,
the wind of stories trapped in some cancerous throat, dying …

a tattered roof in the stars, a tent flying off
with meanings barely gathered into a heap.

TUPAC SHAKUR “THE ROSE THAT GREW FROM CONCRETE”

Did you hear about the rose that grew
from a crack in the concrete?
Proving nature’s law is wrong it
learned to walk with out having feet.

Funny it seems, but by keeping it’s dreams,
it learned to breathe fresh air.

Long live the rose that grew from concrete
when no one else ever cared.

This poem really spoke to me today. Roses are beautiful and strong–strong enough to grow in the harshest of environments. This is a type of our lives. Whatever comes our way, we must never let the concrete in our lives stop the rose in us from blooming.

God bless you all, my darling avidReaders