Embracing Insomnia

Feb 25 2014

I used to hate having a brain that wouldn’t shut down. I can be so tired, but I lie down at night and sleep eludes me. But when I’m immersed in writing a novel, this curse can become a blessing. When I’m lost in the world of my own novel, this sleeplessness becomes an engagement in a world I’m creating, and in my sleepless mind I enter more deeply into the lives of the characters I’ve created, and I come to know them better. It’s in knowing them that the writing really happens.

There’s two ways that the story develops. One is in the ruminating, the time away from writing, especially either when I’m running or when I’m lying in bed. This is where a more general development of the story happens. Sometimes it’s events – oh, this is going to happen! I don’t necessarily know how I’m going to get there, but I know where it’s going. Other times, like tonight, it’s more of a revelation into the mind and heart of a character in the story. There are scenes that I wrote that open the novel that I have been undecided about whether or not they belong. I like the writing, but they sometimes seem a bit out of place. Then tonight, sleepless in bed, I came to understand my protagonist more deeply, and suddenly those opening scenes made sense to me. They don’t just fit, they belong, they’re necessary. It’s a beautiful feeling.

Of course, being able to sleep would be nice. But if I must lie awake, I’m happy that at least it can be productive. So finally I just got up out of bed and wrote. And a thousand words later, the story moves on, inching closer and closer to completion.

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Writing the Death of a Character

Feb 17 2014

I’m encountering a difficulty I hadn’t expected in writing the novel – writing the death of a character. It’s always been an essential element to the story, but I’m finding myself struggling to write the dying well. It’s more than just an emotional attachment to a character. That’s part of it, I’m sure, but it’s something else, something broader. It’s forcing myself to encounter the dying within myself, to embrace its impact on all of the characters in the story, to enter into the experience of loss from so many diverse perspectives. It’s forcing myself to feel vulnerable so that I can authentically articulate vulnerability. 

I think this is where the writer of prose has to be a lover of poetry – not necessarily that he has to be a poet, just the ability to appreciate the subtlety of poetry. What makes a great story truly memorable isn’t so much the ability to express the inexpressible, but rather to express the rarely expressed. Through our characters we lift off the masks that people wear and expose the nakedness that frightens so many of us. In this unmasking, the characters in good fiction become mirrors for the reader to encounter their shadow selves, to confront those recesses of our souls that we hide even from ourselves. 

And it is with this awareness that I come to the challenge of writing the dying of a character, because there is nothing like death to force to the surface all of those dark secrets we try to hide deep down inside. Feelings of failure, rejection, fear, inadequacy, anger, pain, and yet somehow, somehow, to come through all of this darkness into the most hidden truth of all: that ultimately this darkness is a lie, a deception, and that the truth is found in the love which endures the dying, which heals the secret wounds, and which finally gives us the courage to face the terrifying truth of our own inherent goodness. 

Of course I’m aware as I write this that I’ve set a bar far too high for me to reach. But that’s okay. If I allow myself to strive towards this goal, to be aware of the opportunity presented to me in the dying of a character, perhaps I can write it just well enough to serve as just a dim mirror for the reader to gaze within, and perhaps be surprised by what they find. 

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Facebook Page

Feb 16 2014

If you’re interested, consider following me at my Facebook page. As my novel gets closer to completion, lots of my updates will be posted there:

https://www.facebook.com/michael.hallman.author

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The Writer’s Earnest Measures

Feb 13 2014

A writer takes earnest measures to secure his solitude and then finds endless ways to squander it. -Don DeLillo

I laughed the first time I read this quote. I laughed because I came across it during a time when I had perfectly arranged my day so that I would have a good chunk of solitude to devote to working on the novel, time I hadn’t made in quite a while, and having taken such earnest measures to secure my solitude I proceeded to waste away on the internet, squandering my solitude, and ended up getting no writing done in that time alone. It was in one of the many random Google searches that I came across the quote – a quote about squandering solitude discovered as I did just that. And so I laughed.

Solitude is something different from being alone. Being alone is exterior. Solitude is interior. Being alone without interior solitude leads to boredom, loneliness, sadness, lethargy. True solitude is an art, a cultivation of the interior heart that leads to a plunging into the vast expanses of the imagination. True solitude is creative, it is artistic. And so for the writer to be true to his or her gift, she or he must, I believe, learn this art of solitude.

The silence that comes from real solitude is itself a skill of writing. It teaches a profound listening, the kind of listening that no good writer can be without. To write well, to construct characters and narratives that shed light on the human condition in all its complexities, its struggles, its triumphs – the beauty of storytelling! – one must first be able to listen, both to one’s own experiences and to those of others. A writer is first and foremost a listener, an observer, and a good writer possesses the ability to expound upon those hidden revelations behind everyday experiences. The writer has to be able to give voice to those thoughts and emotions that will bear an often haunting honesty, where the reader will identify in the words they behold both the beauty they did not know they possessed, or the ugliness they painstakingly strive to deny. When a writer comes from a place of solitude his words will have the reader delighting in their silent (and sometimes not so silent) “Yes!” at those moments of recognition of hope and beauty, or anxiously skipping ahead so as to silence the painful chord just struck. Sometimes the best compliment a writer can receive is a reader who has to put the book down.

While solitude and being alone are not the same, since solitude is an art, it requires practice, and part of that practice necessitates time alone. In time one can come to experience interior solitude just about anywhere. But to practice the art it is necessary for fixed periods of time alone. The kind of aloneness required to cultivate solitude isn’t just a separation from people, but it means cutting out the distractions that take us away from introspection. This is so challenging today, because we have distractions everywhere. To give you an idea of my own struggle, when I sit down to write, I have to take my iPhone and iPad, place them in airplane mode and then hide them in another room, and then on my laptop I have an app called Self Control that will block the internet for a specified period of time. I rely so heavily on these gimmicks only because I have not yet truly embraced the art of solitude. Even in the monastery I only touched upon it, but I’ve rarely truly given myself to solitude. These little gimmicks help, but ultimately it is on me to embrace the interior life and thus to become the writer I long to be – the writer who will one day have you silently delighting in your yes, and perhaps occasionally the writer who will make you have to put the book down.

Jonathan Franzen once said something to the effect that people who have an internet connection at their work station surely aren’t writing very good fiction. Stephen King said (this was before the internet age and well before smart phones) that the best thing a writer can do is get rid of television. Ultimately what these two great authors are getting at is solitude. An artist must have an interior life, must cultivate silence, because without it the only thing we can produce is noise. And that is one thing this world does not need more of.

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Redemptive Love

Feb 09 2014

I am resurrecting this blog once again. I didn’t plan to stop posting, it just sort of happened. First, to give you a quick update on my personal life. I’ve finally moved into the city, right downtown in the heart of the action. I love it here. Philadelphia is such a gorgeous city and I’ve been dying to get back. It took me longer than I expected but it all worked out for the best. I’ve gone and fallen in love since the last time I posted many months ago. She is a beautiful, kind, passionate woman, and everything is going wonderfully. I’m a very lucky man.

My writing projects are going quite well. I’m currently seeking a literary agent for my two non-fiction projects, two powerful memoirs that I’ve been asked to write. I’m editing a fiction novel for someone, and I’m finally getting back to work on my own fiction novel.

Today I received an e-mail from an agent that I had queried on both non-fiction projects. She ended up passing on both of them, but this time she said she decided to Google me, and it seems she came across this blog. Her e-mail was encouraging and supportive, and she wants me to keep her in mind for future projects. I’ve received some affirming rejection letters in my day, but this one tops the cake. And that’s what made me realize that I need to get back to writing here.

In addition to what I’ve done with this blog in the past, a combination of poetry and spiritual reflections, I’m also going to use this as a space to share my other creative writings. From time to time I will post an excerpt from my novel, just to give you a sense of why I love writing fiction and to generate some interest as I get closer to completion and hopefully publication. Fiction writing for me is an extension of my spirituality. I’ve always been inspired by the likes of Dickens and Dosteovsky, who use powerful stories to shed light on very common human struggles of faith, family, relationship, and inner discovery. That’s what I hope to bring to my own fiction pursuits.

The novel I am currently writing is called When Brian Came Home. It it is the story of Brian O’Grady,the son of an alcoholic, abusive father, and whose mother is a kind, compassionate, generous woman of a very deep Catholic faith. After leaving home in his early 20s, Brian has not returned in over three years, and has only just before the chapter I’m posting here spoken to his father for the first time, albeit briefly. Brian himself is going through a profound spiritual struggle, vacillating between disbelieving in God entirely, or deciding that he’s real, and he’s a bastard.

In the chapter I am about to post, Chapter 9, Brian returns home for the first time in three years. He has just seen his mother crying, though she didn’t see him. He assumes it’s something his father has done. In the chapter preceding this, the father, Bill O’Grady, alone in the house and sobering up for the first time in days, has a very violent reaction to the inner demons that rise up in him when he looks back on his life. Brian enters the home expecting to confront his father. His father is not there, but there is a bloody trail of his presence that leaves Brian confused. And that’s where we pick up here, in Chapter 9 of When Brian Came Home:

“Oh for God’s sake, what’s he done now?” Brian surveyed the bathroom, trying to piece together some mental reenactment of how his drunken father could have managed all of this glass, all of this blood, and yet somehow have made it out of the house. Did he fall out of the shower and into the mirror? That would take some interesting twisting of his body. Did he pass out shaving and just smash into the mirror? His blade was put away too neatly for that. Nothing made sense. Did this have anything to do with his mother crying? He doubted it, but who knows?

The real question now was what to do? He wasn’t entirely sure what he had been planning to do when he saw his father. He had been working under the assumption that Bill was the reason she was crying, and nothing he found in this scene contradicted that assumption. But at the very least it left him highly confused.

He could just call his mom, but he didn’t want to upset her just yet before doing some more investigating. He decided to give his sister a call. Mom tells her everything, Brian thought, so if anyone would know what had her so upset, Lauren would. And maybe she’d give him an idea of what to do about this mess he’d just walked into here. She picked up on the third ring.

“Hey little bro! What’s happening?” Lauren sounded perky as always.

“You at work, Lauren?” Brian didn’t think his voice sounded worried, but his sister picked up on everything.

“No, I’m home. Mom’s here, actually. What’s wrong, Bri? ”

“Mom’s there? Is she okay?”

“Yeah, sure she’s okay. What’s going on, Brian? You don’t sound good.”

“God, you’re just like Mom. No, don’t say anything to her, it’s just that I saw her downtown a while back, and she was crying.” He explained everything, leading up to his walking into the house, when Lauren cut him off.

“Oh, was this about an hour ago? Yeah, she’s fine, Bri. She was on the phone with me, in fact. She wasn’t upset, baby bro. She was happy. I’ve got some news. Wanna take a guess?”

“Probably not. Just tell me.”

“Oh, you’re no fun! Fine. Brian William O’Grady, are you ready to be an uncle?”

Brian was silent a minute, trying to process the emotional switch that was being flipped in him. “Holy crap, Lauren! Are you serious? You’re pregnant?”

“That’s right, Nick knocked me up!” Lauren laughed at her own irreverence. Ellen was sitting next to her on the red Ikea sofa, and just shook her head and rolled her eyes.

“Wow, Lauren! Congratulations! When did you find out? Nick’s got to be so excited!”

“Oh yeah, he’s excited. You know Nick, he’s of course a little nervous, still hasn’t gotten a job offer, but he technically doesn’t finish his JD for another six weeks, so he’s got time. And I’m doing well enough, plus we still have money saved from the wedding. But hey, he’s a worrier. One of us has to be, I guess.” Lauren laughed, and for a moment Brian forgot that he was still standing beside a dried up pool of his father’s blood, until he shifted and heard the glass crunch beneath his feet.

“Oh crap, Lauren, I almost forgot why I called. I hate to think that the asshole is going to ruin another otherwise happy moment, but have you heard from Bill recently?”

“You mean Dad?” Lauren understood Brian’s loathing of their father, but a big part of her felt sorry for him. But she also knew that he had treated Brian a thousand times worse than he treated her. “No, I haven’t heard from him. Why, what’s up?”

“Well, like I said, after I saw mom crying, I decided to come home and confront him. Only problem is, he isn’t here.”

“Okay, so he’s not there. Hey, maybe he went out to look for a job at last! We can dream, right?” Lauren laughed again, only this time it was forced, as if she were trying to sugarcoat her own disappointment in their father.

“Well, I’m pretty sure he’s not. I actually think he might be hurt. The house almost borders on a crime scene right now.” Brian scanned around and again followed the trail of blood with his eyes, across the hallway and beginning down the stairs. There was a bloody handprint on the wall, underneath the row of family portraits that would deceive any intruder into thinking he had broken into the home of a loving, happy family.

Brian explained to Lauren the blood and broken glass, and terror struck Ellen’s heart as she witnessed her daughter’s frightened expression, the gasps as her hand pressed to her heart. Lauren hung up and told her mother all that Brian had said. Brian was going to call the hospital and his friend John Wolf and find out what he could. Given Bill’s history it was difficult to discern if this was a police matter or not, but John would help him out, he was sure.

Ellen hugged her daughter tightly, and apologized that such a dark shadow had to be cast on such a celebratory day. Ellen had been so overjoyed with the news that she would be a grandmother that she momentarily had forgotten about her own news, the real reason why Brian had seen her crying. She knew she would have to deal with that soon enough, but right now she was too numb to process anything. Besides, Lauren needed her now. But first and foremost, she had to find her husband.

Ellen stopped on the sidewalk in front of her house, her heart pounding like a hammer as she saw the police cruiser double-parked outside, the door open, the officer she assumed to be John Wolf speaking with her son in the doorway, their eyes fixed on the trail of blood that now led right to the spot where Ellen stood, frozen in horror.

“Mom!” Brian darted out to his petrified mother. He wrapped his arm around her shoulders and kissed her on the top of her head. “Hey Mom, don’t worry. Everything’s going to be fine. I checked the hospitals and Bill isn’t there. John’s got some guys out looking around. Bill’s going to be fine. John said it’s a good amount of blood, but not enough to be deadly.” John had told Brian to say that to Ellen, just to help keep her calm, but in all honesty he wasn’t so sure. It was a lot of blood.

Brian guided his mother into the house, and John Wolf introduced himself. He left her his card and showed himself out, promising to check back in as soon as he had any more information. He assured Ellen that they would find her husband and bring him back safe.

“Good, that way I can kill him,” Ellen laughed nervously.

“Well, ma’am, just wait till I leave before you do. I’d hate to have to testify as a witness.” John grinned boyishly, then placed his cap on his head and returned to his car.

After Brian showed his mother the scene upstairs, which she viewed stoically, they walked down the the kitchen, where Brian made them both a cup of tea.

“You know, I tried so many times to convince your father to get a cell phone, just in case of emergencies. But he said he didn’t need it, that it was an unnecessary expense. He always hated technology.” Of course he did, Brian thought. Why wouldn’t he hate something Brian had shown an interest in since a young teenager?

“He’s gonna be fine, Mom.”

Brian questioned the wisdom of what he was about to say next, paused a moment as his mother gazed blankly into her cup, and then decided he had to ask.

“Mom, I know this might not be the right time, but I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately. How come you’ve stayed with him all these years?” Brian regretted asking the moment the words left his mouth, but it was out there now.

His mother sighed deeply and took a sip of her tea. “Oh Brian, I’d be lying if I said the thought never crossed my mind. There were times perhaps when I was close. After his DUI I really had had it, and a few months later, when he wasn’t even looking for work anymore, I was sure I would leave. We had had a nasty fight, and I was begging him to quit drinking. I even went to an AA meeting myself and got someone to come talk to him, someone from the program. Bill was furious, I could tell, but he never said anything. He just thanked the man for coming, showed him the door, and then poured himself a drink, and then another, and then another.”

“Fin was spending the week at Grandmom and Grandpop’s, and of course you and Lauren were already both gone by then. It was just us, and I was mad as hell. I went around the house, searching everywhere for his hidden stashes of liquor. I was going to end this once and for all. I was going to take away all his liquor and all his money. I’d hide my purse from him and cut up his debit card.”

“But then something happened, something that made me realize why I had never left him, and never would. I was in a fury, tearing through our closet, going through every box, searching in his shoes, everywhere. Then I came across a box, a wide shoebox, like for pair of snow boots or something. But it was old, ragged. Your father wasn’t one to hold onto things, never accumulated much, so it struck me as odd. This box was torn and faded and barely holding together. I picked it up and shook it gently. It sounded like papers inside. I lifted off the lid, and when I realized what was inside, I knelt down and just started to cry.”

Ellen paused, sipped her lukewarm Earl Gray, her eyes glistening. She looked up at her son who caught her gaze, his brow furrowed in confusion.

“Inside that box your father had kept letters, cards, ticket stubs, remembrances going all the way back to when we were teenagers. He even had one of those little conversation hearts that said ‘Kiss me’ that I had put in his lunch one Valentine’s Day. And the thing is, your father has never, never been a sentimental man. He doesn’t hold on to anything. But stuffed away in our closet he kept a box filled with memories of me, of us, tokens telling the story of how in love we once were. And the thing is, while over the years the collection didn’t accumulate quite as heavily, he still kept all of the birthday cards, even little notes that I had written him on the way to job interviews.”

“Up until that point, I was certain your father had stopped loving me long ago. I just thought he had forgotten how to love completely. And to some extent maybe he did. But somewhere deep down in that heart of his, that heart that I fell in love with, the heart  that he had once given entirely to me, with which he loved me with so much passion, somewhere a flicker of that love was still alive.”

“Your father treated you horribly, Brian. I honestly don’t know if I’ll ever forgive him for the way he treated you. But he was truly a good man once. The man I fell in love with was truly, sincerely, a good man. And I don’t make any excuses for him, but something happened along the way, and life just broke him. But kneeling on my closet floor with that faded old shoebox, I just knew that somewhere, that goodness hadn’t died. I knew that I could never abandon him, because if I did, if I stopped loving your father, then whatever goodness was left might just die altogether. And I simply could not let that happen.”

For the second time in a week Brian was surprised by an unexpected appeal to his father’s somehow latent goodness. He again battled a simmering anger that the idea stirred up in him, because under no circumstances could he see his father as anything other than a bastard. But hearing his mother tell the story, watching her eyes glimmer as she remembered a man he never knew, for the first time Brian found himself wanting to know that man. He wanted to know the Bill O’Grady that she described, someone who loved, who remembered good times, who cared. That was a man he wished he could call Dad.

“Fr. Flynn really knows you well, Mom.”

Now it was Ellen’s turn for the brows to furrow in confusion. “Fr. Flynn? What are you talking about, Brian?”

“I went to see him last Friday. I remembered you saying he spent Friday afternoons at St. Ann’s in case anyone wanted to talk or whatever. I decided to talk to him about you. I wanted him to convince you to leave Bill. I always figured it was Catholic guilt keeping you with him. You know, Church teaching on divorce and all that. But he said you must see some goodness in him. I still don’t see it, but at least I know it’s your choice, and not something you feel trapped in.”

Ellen’s eyes narrowed as she looked at her son, uncertain how to process this little revelation. “You asked Fr. Flynn to talk to me about leaving your father? Jesus, Mary and Joseph, Brian. What were you thinking?” Her voice wasn’t angry as much as it was amused.

“You know, Mom, I saw you crying this morning, and I thought it was something Bill had done again, that he had hurt you again somehow. I just couldn’t take the thought of you suffering any more because of him. That’s why I came here in the first place. I was going to confront him about it. I honestly don’t know what I would have done, but it wouldn’t have been pretty, I can tell you that.”

Ellen reached across and took her son’s hand in hers. “Brian, I love you. You really have such a good heart. I don’t ever blame you for the way you feel about your father, and I was so proud of you for calling him and telling him you forgive him. But I really worry about this hatred you’re still carrying around. It’s understandable, of course. But it’s not good for you. Forgiveness still needs to go deeper, Brian. I’m not saying you have to see the goodness in your father the way that I do. You never had a chance to see it in the first place, which I will always regret. But forgiveness can’t really happen until you at least try to look for it. If you can just try to find some goodness in him, then maybe you can really experience the healing that comes with forgiveness. That’s what I had to do. That day on the closet floor, my own bitterness began to melt away. Maybe it never left me entirely, but once I decided that there might be goodness still in him somewhere, some part of him capable of love, that’s when my heart began to mend.”

Brian shifted uncomfortably in his seat, and for a moment looked away from his mother. Then he met her gaze again and said, “Mom, I’m really happy for you and that you’ve been able to get to a point of forgiving Bill or whatever. But I’m not there, and I don’t think I ever will be.”

Brian and his mother sat in silence a half hour more, until at last Fin came home from school. Fin saw the blood, then saw Brian sitting at the kitchen table, in the house where he hadn’t stepped foot in over three years. Ellen got up and walked over to her youngest child, frozen in the front doorway, and wrapped her arms around him, pulling his head to her breast as she pressed her cheek to his forehead. She led him into the kitchen and explained all that had transpired.

“Well, he’s a tough kid, you know? I’m sure he’ll be fine. Don’t you worry, Mom. He’ll be passed out on the couch again in no time.”

Even Brian couldn’t help from laughing.

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Inching closer to a book deal

Sep 11 2013

I’m very close to securing literary agents for both book projects, which is so exciting, and hopefully means both are one step closer to getting publishing deals. But what I’ve found so fascinating is one, how quickly agents have responded to my queries, often times the very next day. In one case, I sent out a letter to an agent Saturday night of Labor Day weekend, and Sunday morning she responded with strong interest, asking to see a formal book proposal. I was expecting to wait weeks, and instead I’ve barely had to wait days.

But the second thing that has caught me by surprise is how encouraging the rejection letters have been. In every case of rejection it was simply a matter of it not being the type of project that this particular agent represents. But they have almost always expressed a real heartfelt thanks for letting them look at it, and assured me that I will find an agent and publisher for these works. I credit that to both of my clients, who have shared such profoundly moving stories with me, who have been so open and honest with me and invited me into their secret places. Because of their honesty and the stories they have to share, my job of writing those stories is really very simple. I’m honored, and very excited for their sakes as well as mine to see these projects move forward.

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Grayscale Love

Aug 23 2013

Like lightning through the blackest
clouds, your memory jolts me
today. I thought this was over,
missing you. I thought I moved on.
Yet in the secret of the night you
appeared as a flash of scarlet in a
grayscale dream, and I woke with
a freshly bleeding heart. How can
an illusion leave a wound so true?
And now I fear the dark of night
lest you haunt me with your spectral
love once more. Love me in the
daytime if you’ll love me at all,
love me so that I know it’s true,
but let my secret darkness be free
from the barren illusion of your kiss.

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Another little life update

Aug 22 2013

Things continue moving in a positive direction for me these days. When it rains, it pours, and that has never been more true in my life. I’m to the point where I actually have to start turning work away.

I mentioned before that I have been contracted as an author for two full length book projects. Both projects have reached a turning point now, and this week I begin the process of submitting proposals to publishers and querying literary agents. It’s a very exciting time. Once we have a publishing deal I will be able to speak more openly about the projects. I find it interesting, though, that while my dream is to be a successful fiction writer, both of these non-fiction books are very much like what I would like to write about, in that they are stories of overcoming hardship and both carry strong themes of redemption.

There is a line from the movie version of Lord of the Rings that I often think of when it comes to writing. Gandalf has just put on a fireworks show for Bilbo’s birthday party, and then he visits Bilbo at his home, and they have an argument because Bilbo does not want to give up the ring. Then Gandalf makes his true power known and says to Bilbo, “Do not mistake me for some conjurer of cheap tricks.” I love that line. Gandalf has powers that allow him to do fun little things like fireworks shows, and that’s all well and good, it makes people smile and laugh. But ultimately his power serves a greater purpose. That’s an important lesson for us as writers, I think. It’s great to write fun beach reads and use our talents to make people laugh or enjoy some escape. That’s a gift. But the real vocation of a writer is to construct narratives that get to the heart of the human struggle, that shed light on the beauty in the world, and to allow our words to lead people from their darkness into the light of hope. That’s what I hope to accomplish, and I have that opportunity now with both of these books, and I’m so grateful for that.

In addition to these two book projects, I’ve also signed on to ghost blog for a law firm. It’s decent money, and the key to succeeding as a freelancer, until the big payout comes, is finding multiple streams of income, and this is a nice supplement for me. Plus I love the law, and I considered going to law school once, so writing about it is kind of fun.

Finally, I’ve also just been contracted as an editor of another full length book. Again, it’s good money, even if a short term project, and it will help get me over the hump until these other two projects start bringing in the kind of money I expect they might.

All of this adds up to Michael being a very, very busy boy. I’ve finally reached that point in my life where real success is close enough to taste, and it seems that all the breaks are finally going my way. Now I just need to work my butt off and make my dreams come true, because they are now right in front of me, just waiting to be claimed.

So that’s my life in a nutshell right now. Insanely busy, very happy, and finally, for the first time in my life, on the verge of true professional success, doing the one thing I’m truly passionate about. Life is good.

Thanks to everyone for all your prayerful support. It means more to me than I can express in words – an irony for a writer, I suppose!

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Love For All Seasons

Aug 17 2013

To know the sweetness of your kiss,
my dear, is the prayer which consumes
my beating heart. How I long to feel
your touch graze like an autumn breeze
across my longing skin. I want to be lost
in the beckoning call of your palantir eyes,
whose passion like a summer storm would
sweep across my yearning soul, and in
whose gaze I would discover the secret
of your smile. I want to hold you beneath
the amber light of the harvest moon, as
your head rests upon my blossoming heart.
I want to dance with you by the dying
light of a winter’s fire as the snow drifts
down from the midnight sky. Yet till the
time is right, my dear, I am content to
close my eyes and enjoy your face as
you smile at me in the beauty of my dreams.

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To Greet the Rising Sun

Aug 03 2013

Through the distance I close my eyes,
imagining you near. I can almost taste
the sweetness of your breath. I picture
your loveliness upon my bed, where
in the quiet hours at the break of dawn,
your body like a radiant moon would draw
my lips, as a wave of kisses would crash
upon the white sands of your naked skin,
my hands like a tide rushing upon you.
With unbridled passion we would awake
the sleeping sun, our love greeting the
first morning rays with ecstatic cries of
rapture. And as the sun climbs higher
in the violet sky, you would rest your head
upon my chest, listening to the song of
my beating heart as it sings out your name.

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