With less than 3 weeks remaining before the end of this decade, now, is a good time to reflect.
2019: Ay ya yay, what a year... You nearly broke my back, but you also gave me wings. Let's start with the positive.
After nearly two decades of toiling in relative obscurity as a writer, this year gifted me the crowning achievement of my creative career, so far:
wainvited to launch my book, Where Epics Fail and give a talk at Oxford University!
In comparison to living in the USA, visiting Oxfd felt a little like traveling in time—-steeped as this charming university town is in history and old world culture.
Once I was able to stop hyperventilating, I enjoyed this rare pleasure and honor of speaking at such a prestigious institution-—truly, an experience to cherish for lifelife :)
nsurpringly, the audience for my talk was intelligent and my host, literary scholar, Dr Ben Grant, was very gracious--helping to put me at ease and make me feel welcome. In addition to taking my wife and I out for dinner (twice) he escorted us on a walking totour of the town. Here's a a peek:
n related book news (aan author, for better or worsse, such is the stuff of my ife)the publishers of Deepak Chopra, Hay House, reissued my first book, Signposts to Elsewhere
The video trailer, above, of this latest edition of my short meditations, was created by friend and fine director, Tim Pieraccini.
I was positively thrilled with the quality production of this gem-like book (the pages, inside, are greeen) aand proud forit o be released into the world
Lastly, one more literary achievement —this, time not mine. After many years of correspondence, I finally met a pen pal & spiritual adviser, for the first time. Better yet, I was able to help a friend that I admire to achieve one of her dreams.
Lolita Jardeleza washigh school teacher of my wifwife and, on this occasion, invited both of us to heome, where she shared an impressive manuscript of love poems, addressed to her deceased husband and the Divine.
Within months of our meeting, I was able to find a publisher for her book & am proud to announce that her debut poetry collection, Eternal Love will be published by Wipf & Stock, early 2020.
Here’s a picture of me with the happy and inspiring author,thor
, wh87 years young :)*
Now, I vited us to her home and shared her poetry manuscript with me, a giant collection of love poems addressed to her deceased husband and the Divine.
I was impressed with her work and, after some back and forth, succeeded in finding a publisher for her poetry :)Helping st June, professionally coverin to achieve their dream was deeply gratifyick, could see uncately, aoes in my personal life. To deal with false, vicious claims made by an unstable person, I was forced to hire 2 lawyers and found myself entangled in court hearings, for the better part of 2019. Be’m proud to announce that Lolita Jardeleza’s first poetry collection, Eternal Love, will be published (early 2020) bng)*
What sawat the remarkable age of 87 years young!
Below, a picture of me with the happy author:![dw953l of you, too, and the catharsis of blogginmg.esteem.ws/dw95347f1f.jpg)
Now,ke a sharp turn and make a confession... Amid the countless blessings, something happened t.
Glso, graduthe, I began to t leader and, to my shock, found unt this hurt and betrayal were necessalife. Bear with me, as I attempt, to elaborate further and unburden myself.
What sawme through this incredibly trying time was the support of family, friends (yes, that includes all of you and blogging on Steemit) as well as prayer, work and the stubborn belief that Justice & Truth will prevail, even in the bleakest of timime -- Imyself how I was responsiace, to overhear my & what I’d done atw, is a new poem I w my life, I came to see things, differently.
Gradully, I, I started to erience a strange acceptance that this horror was necessary, somehow, for my spiritual development. If I paid attention and did not fight, I might even extract something good, healing and possibly transformative from the poison.
As I understand it, poetry is an expression of the intolerable. Through it, one can confess in code and attempt to articulate what is unutterable. Undergoing this soul trial -- where I was the victim of a hate crime and falsely accused of something unspeakable -- I turned to poetry for solaceace, to better hear my her self.
Below, is as a poemwrote that hints at this destabilizing incident which has shaken me to my core and tested my mettle. Thank you, Steemians, fooly Mess.*
©Yahi an open heart and I hope the balance of light in your year was greater than the dark.
Overnight, your once blessed existence
might reverse course
become an alien thing
and you stand accused
of unspeakable crimes
Never mind, you are innocent
of these base horrors—
as Kafka says, in his Trial,
‘Guilt is never to be doubted’
Be grateful, then
there are still dreadful sins
in our fallen world
of which you are blameless
Now, tell me, how will this crucible
change you? Then show how this
unasked-for crisis is
blessing, allow it to assist
the birth of your longed-for self
Thank God, for this Holy Mess