Advertisements

Tag Archives: Journal

Heaven on the Shelves (Part 2)

My beau and I explored a new territory for us of late – a used book store. We recognized that as soon as we stepped across the threshold, we were in a paradise of sorts. Hundreds – thousands? – of dog-eared paperbacks and slightly moldy, fragrant hardcovers sat stiffly straight or lazily askew on shelves that touched the ceiling. Giggling as our eyes bounced from topic to topic, we wandered up some aisles and meandered down others.

Yes, indeed there was that book I’ve been meaning to get, sitting at the top of one shelf, the one that’s been on my Goodreads list for well over three years. It would have to wait for now, I thought.  Maybe there’s something else here I want more.

As I negotiated a stepladder and turned the corner, a double stack of Perry Mason paperbacks revealed themselves. I picked up a couple titles in that sudden discovery.

Then – around another corner and down yet another aisle, there it was: a small, five-by-seven-inch soft, brown leather covered book with gold lettering. My heart leapt when I saw the author, and I carefully opened the cover:


The next page was even more revealing, more exciting, more mysterious:

Phil gave Mimi this Ben Hecht book for Christmas in 1925. And Christmas that year was on a Friday. This is all I know, besides all the questions: Who were they to one another? What were their surnames? How old were they? Where did they live? How did Phil present this gift? How did Mimi react? Did she read the book in its entirely? How in Heaven’s name did this gem wind up in a used book store ninety-two years later?

It’s now on the end table next to my reading chair, ready to be savored.

©2017 Susan Marie Molloy and all works within.

Advertisements

T-Rex and the Floating Orbs

In my travels, some of the most unusual sights pop up when I least expect them. Mostly, as I go on my merry way, I’m looking for something else, or nothing at all, and wham! there it is.

On a tranquil country road, in the late morning one day, ol’ Tyrannosaurs Rex appeared. Well, it was more like his bleached white skeleton standing frozen in a front yard.

“T-Rex and the Floating Orbs”
(c)2017 Susan Marie Molloy Original Photograph

What become more intriguing were the two floating bluish orbs behind the skeleton when I looked at the photograph later that day. Cretaceous Period meets Preternatural Phantasms.

Logic tells me the orbs are reflections of moisture from the car window.

Or are they?—

©2017 Susan Marie Molloy and all works within.


Heaven on the Shelves (Part 1)

Taking a break from work one morning, my beau and I headed out on a hunting trip. This type of hunting was looking for bargains at garage sales so that we can save money in furnishing our cottage.

We spent the morning up one driveway and down others, buying a little something useful here and there. I got a copy of “The Widow of the South” by Robert Hicks for barely a song, and I was happy. One can never have, nor read, too many books, I thought.

On our way back to our cottage, my beau and I stopped at a used book store. This was our first venture there, and as soon as we stepped across the threshold, we were in a paradise. Heavens, I don’t know where to start.

At the top of one shelf, I saw a book I’ve been meaning to get, one that’s been on my Goodreads list for well over three years. Yes, that looks good, but I’ll keep looking—for now.

Rounding the corner was a double stack of Perry Mason paperbacks. That was a goldmine for me, and I picked up a couple.   All right!

Around the corner and down another aisle, there was a small hardcover book. My heart leapt when I saw the author, and I carefully turned the pages.

I’ll write about that book and what was in it, when I return to this subject next week. “If books could talk—”, is a memorable saying.

I say, “they do.”

©2017 Susan Marie Molloy and all works within.


Royal Ball

One afternoon, while out running errands, my beau and I stopped by an antique store, just for fun. It was on the way to one of our destinations, so why not?

Oh, yes, there were the usual things: old dishes, toys, knickknacks, crystal, books, and whatnot. Then, around a corner, appeared these beauties:

“Queen of the Ball”

“King of the Ball”

These were costumes made with satin, beads, sequins, faux fur, and feathers. They were listed as “Mardis Gras King and Queen Costumes.” The white satin gown glittered with silver and golden sequins and beads under the store’s lights, while the feathers softly swayed in the breeze from the ceiling fan. The white, gold, and silver king’s cape, trimmed in faux ermine, looked heavy and sumptuous draped across a railing.

The gown was listed at a couple bucks under a thousand; the king’s cape somewhere around nine hundred.

Ah, if money was no object, and we had a castle.  Or a parade float—

©2017 Susan Marie Molloy and all works within.


Morning Meditation: Streaked Sunrise

Original photograph (c)2017 Susan Marie Molloy, all rights reserved.


What A Difference Twenty-Four Hours Makes

Yesterday morning, around ten o’clock, the skies were serene with an almost imperceptible breeze.  


Later in the afternoon, the sky turned grey, and a passing rain shower glided by.


The skies became clear again, and the sunset was breathtaking.


Now, a day later, around ten o’clock, the rains returned.


The breeze today found its strength in the far-flung outer bands of Hurricane Irma, and it’s robust.  I can hear the wind hitting the house in unrhythmic gusts.  I just learned that Irma slammed a place called Cudjoe Key in the Florida Keys this morning.

What a difference twenty-four hours makes.

©2017 Susan Marie Molloy, and all works within.


Product Placement Rediscovered 

The empty shelves that once held gallons of bottled water left me somewhat speechless three days ago.  It was only then that the herd of glowing plastic stegosauruses, triceratops, and ankylosauruses became apparent.  When those shelves were filled with water bottles, the toys were “invisible.”  The panic of a possibly approaching hurricane reveals much, if we pay attention.  These next hours and days should reveal more.


©2017 Susan Marie Molloy and all works within.


Evening Acrobatics

After a day of cleaning house, grocery shopping, gardening, walking the dogs, doing laundry, and all those little things that seem to get done only on Saturdays, I proceeded to accomplish a lot of relaxing.

I was laying across the bed, thinking about this and that, when a large black insect benignly and silently floated in my direction.  It looked like a mosquito, but beefier and slower moving.

It came closer to me. The panicky, snapping wave of my hand didn’t deter it to a different flight path. No. Not at all.

The darned thing kept coming at me, floating gracefully and silently within my air space.

It was bound and determined to be my exercise partner, encouraging me to s-t-r-e-t-c-h my arms and twist my torso.

Again I waved, but this time with my entire arm from my shoulder to my fingertips, and with all the gusto I could muster.

My center of gravity changed.  I saw the room turn.  I kept going backwards.

I fell off the bed.

It was a graceful move.

It was acrobatic.

©Susan Marie Molloy, and all works within.


A Year of Change

This morning I took a walk and enjoyed the crispy November air.  It felt fresh, and it revitalized me.   And then I thought –

November?   Already!

This past year – yet, not quite over – was a busy time for me.  Some busyness came about deliberately and some naturally evolved.  Being occupied led to simplifying life, and it remained an on-going mission, particularly since the summer.  Someone once told me, “People would be surprised at how little they actually need to live.”

Indeed.

Relationships are the natural ebb and flow of life.  I am always am a firm believer in that you cannot force a relationship.  If it’s meant to be, it will be, whether blood relations or not.  It all evens out the way it’s supposed to be.

I’ve gotten so disorganized in the past couple of years, and I lost my bearing.  There were some damnable problems with people that threw off my balance.  Happily, I’m righted again, finally.

More travelling happened this past year, too. It was good to get away, see different sights, and become more knowledgeable in these travels.

During much of my free time, I wrote more than ever.  I published three books of poetry this year – and if you picked up any of my four books, thank you!  Meanwhile, I’m still working on a larger book that should be ready next year.  I can only write when the spirit moves me.  All writers experience writer’s block from time to time.  It’s natural.

Yet, with all the events this year, this coming year is my “Year of Change.”

This is going to be a first-class year for me, filled with lots of changes for the good.

I’m looking forward to it and sharing it with you.  Stay tuned.

©Susan Marie Molloy, and all works within.


BOOK REVIEW: Twilight’s Indian Princess: Book I

I'm a member of Rosie's Book Review Team.

I’m a member of Rosie’s Book Review Team.

If you have an empty block on your kitchen wall calendar this summer, “Twilight’s Indian Princess” by Margaret Jean Langstaff might just be the thing to fill in that space. This is fifth in my series of book reviews; I hope that my recommendations inspire you to read these books.
……….

Ever have “that kind of day” where nothing goes as intended? Ever have one of “those” days that actually spread across years—maybe across a lifetime? Ever realize everyone around you is perpetually demanding, needing, pulling, provoking, and commanding even more from you while your see your life go unendingly neglected and suitably unfulfilled? Ever feel like dumping all it back on their heads like a hot mess and taking your life back for yourself?

Margaret Jean Langstaff brings this all together in “Twilight’s Indian Princes” through her protagonist, Sarah Sloan McCorkle, and frames the scenes into delightful, and at times, hilarious vignettes. This is a novelette short enough (40 pages) to read on the train to the office or during the lunch hour.

The story is framed around Sarah Sloan McCorkle and how her family treats her: from her nagging mother; to her sweet, yet ever-wanting, children; to her husband who, despite supposedly being below her station in life, she loves and appreciates and married anyway.

We see Sarah look at herself one day, and feeling “mired in her dark wintery responsibilities of daily life,” she looks to begin “to focus on focusing.” And so, one day, she focuses on the blank squares on the kitchen wall calendar. She sees them as representing unscheduled family activities, yet she sees them—perhaps subconsciously—akin to the empty spaces in her life, where others convinced her to follow a safe, traditional path rather than the “risky, dangerous” avant-garde profession of which she dreamed and was gifted to do. She wanted to fill those spaces, and if she couldn’t fill them post haste with her own dreams, she at least wanted to fill them with time for herself, even if it happened to be “up to her neck in fragrant froth” in the bathtub. Indeed, she “was beginning to enjoy her time off from Time.”

Yet, as the Scottish poet Robert Burns once wrote, “The best laid schemes of mice and men oft go awry,” and that is how Sarah’s day continued. We watch as she deals with an incident that finally snaps her, and thereafter, we follow her to more serene and introspective moments.

Margaret Jean Langstaff has a writing style that keeps the reader’s attention, and the reader must reciprocate by paying close attention. There are well-written long sentences, like streams of consciousness. Humor pervades throughout the pages. I laughed at a scene where “a hush puppy whizzed across the table and hit [Sarah] on the nose.” The author made the scene even more powerful when “Sarah set aside her fork, dabbed her lips, folded her napkin, lay it down next to her plate and stood up.” We know by now something is afoot, something quite unexpected.

The author gives several characters perfect southern accents with questionable grammatical structures that you can fairly hear amplifying from the pages yet not think twice about. It’s natural. The letters that Sarah’s children write to her are convincingly children’s voices. To Sarah, Wesley, her husband, is a “cave man” and “gorilla,” yet he is likeable with an unforgettable regional voice, peppered with out-of-date words, particularly one.

Margaret Jean Langstaff writes lovely descriptive scenes, most particularly:

“Her mind went all loose and bubbly and took off on its own, unmoored and rudderless, and sailing here, there, everywhere, like a drunken butterfly floating through the warm moist air, darting off, alighting, tasting, returning, then fluttering off to something else.”

Sarah saw her life the same way: rudderless, darting off, fluttering off to something else, and she was looking for what she wanted, not what everyone else wanted. She wanted to be free, unrestricted as a horse running in the open plains.

“Twilight’s Indian Princess” is quirky, yet fun, and stimulates familiarity and reflection. Initially, I wasn’t sure of where the story was headed, but as I kept reading, I found some ways to identify with Sarah and the people around her.

I recommend “Twilight’s Indian Princess” for a fun, quick read. Indeed, you may find things in common with some, or all, of the characters.

You can find it HERE on Amazon.

© Susan Marie Molloy, and all works within. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material and any works here on this site without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.


Salmon Brook Farms

Official Home of Lavinia and Rick Ross

The Gardenia Diary

Thoughts on Life as Written from The Gardenia Cottage

Jemverse

Life in words

AMERICA ON COFFEE

Americans' daily coffee ritual.....

spanishwoods

thoughts from the forest

Friendly Fairy Tales

Fairy Tales and Poetry Celebrating Magic and Nature for Kids of all Ages

A Writer's Path

Sharing writing tips, information, and advice.

The Recipe Hunter

Cook and Enjoy

Sharing God's Story

"Come and hear, all you who fear God. Let me tell you what he has done for me." - Psalm 66:16

Mrs. Twinkle

My Wonderful Little World

Book 'Em, Jan O

Ghosts, Tall Tales & Witty Haiku!

When Timber Makes One Still

"Everyone needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to the soul" -John Muir

It's A Twisted Life According To Gene

Just another Gene Molloy weblog

Coming Home to Flint Michigan

Memoirs, menus, and recipes by David Warda

barrywax

Short Stories by Barry Wax

Little Fears

Tales of whimsy, humor and courgettes

%d bloggers like this: