The Year in Review…and Looking Forward

In 2017, I…

  • finished two manuscripts (third and fourth)
  • began working on my fifth manuscript
  • edited my second manuscript with the help of my writers group
  • published my second book
  • attended a writers conference
  • got feedback from an agent on 10 pages of my writing
  • wrote my first short story in a new genre for me: horror
  • educated myself on branding and marketing
  • began blogging weekly
  • created a weekly plan for my website of posting a poem, a blog, and an excerpt from one of my stories
  • created accounts across social media for author branding
  • followed other bloggers
  • created my author site (www.cynthiahilston.com)
  • used buffer.com for active posting on my social media sites
  • became friends with several people from my writers group
  • contributed guest posts to Writer’s Path
  • entered a few online writing contests
  • began reviewing indie author’s books on my blog
  • read 52 books

In 2018, I plan to…

  • finish my fifth manuscript in January
  • focus on marketing and branding for a while
  • promote my published books
  • edit my third manuscript
  • publish my third book
  • begin editing my fourth manuscript
  • begin writing my sixth (and possibly seventh) book
  • work on more short stories
  • enter more online contests
  • continue to actively engage on social media
  • continue to make guest posts
  • continue to find new bloggers to follow
  • continue book-blogging
  • enrich my friendship with fellow writers and authors
  • keep readingpablo (16)

Happy New Year! Here’s to a productive 2018! Thanks for your support in 2017.

Excerpt from Mile Marker 139 (WIP) – Chapter 9

Chapter Nine: Russ Jacobs

“You know I ain’t gonna be surprised,” Russ grumbles as Brandy drives.

“Can you at least pretend?” his sister asks.

Russ casts a glance in her direction.  Her wavy brown hair is pulled up in a high ponytail, and she’s dressed up for her, which means her nice jeans and a new sports jersey.  Brandy was a jock in high school and is the soccer mom who coaches her kids’ games.  She’s happiest in a pair of sweatpants and a T-shirt, and other than the light brown eyes Russ and she share, you wouldn’t know they were brother and sister.  Where Russ has a hard time finding enough leg room in Brandy’s Focus and his head grazes the ceiling, Brandy has the driver’s seat moved as close to the steering wheel as it can go.

“I’m no actor,” Russ says, smirking.

Brandy huffs.  “If I weren’t driving, I’d pop you one in the arm, bro.  You know Ed and the guys went through a lot to put this thing together.  And on New Year’s Eve of all nights!  You know places are booked months, years, in advance.  The reservation fee alone’s probably more than your monthly salary.”

Russ chuckles.  “You don’t know how much I make month.”

“Well, no, but you ain’t exactly living in high society if that hole you rent in Inwood’s anything to go by.  I still don’t know why you gotta live in Manhattan.  It’s like a betrayal, Russ.  What’s wrong with your home back in Queens?”

Russ grins.  “What’s it matter to you?  Besides, you got a point.  I hardly stay there.  Maybe it’s time to move, but getting back to the previous point of this stupid party, I never asked for any of you loons to do anything.”

Brandy pulls the car into a private lot and parks.  After turning off the ignition, she turns toward her brother.  “Ah, Rusty, we do it ‘cause we love ya.”

Russ cringes at his childhood name, hating that his closest family members still call him it just to get a reaction.  “Uh, don’t call me ‘Rusty.’  Okay, fine.  I’ll go in, act all surprised, and grab a beer.  Seeing my pals is reason enough to have a good time.”

“That’s the spirit!”

They step out of the car to frigid wind whipping their faces.  Russ puts a protective arm around his sister as they hustle toward the bar, a hopping new place called Jazzy Sue’s.  Once inside, they’re packed shoulder-to-shoulder with the patrons.  Brandy calls over the noise of the crowd and the music to the bartender that they’re there for a private party.

“Back room!” the bartender mouths and waves them on.

Russ and Brandy shuffle through the crowd, and upon arriving outside the door to the party room, Russ smirks at his sister, shaking his head.

“What’s so funny?” she asks.

“How would you convince me to get to this party without me suspecting anything?  You know, Ed kept teasing me about throwing an ‘Over the Hill’ party for months.  He doesn’t really think I’m gonna be shocked.”

Brandy smiles, amused.  “Okay, okay, point taken.  Let’s just get in there and outta this body heat.  Ugh, I can feel the sweat between my–”

“Don’t say it.”

Brandy laughs.  “C’mon.”

She opens the door, and the crowd beyond the threshold shouts in one voice, “Surprise!”

Russ smiles in spite of himself as he enters.  Hands are clapping him on the back, and someone passes a beer to him, which he takes and knocks back.

“How’s it feel to be an old man, buddy?”

“I’m amazed you’re still walking without a cane!”

“Hey, happy birthday, man!”

Russ can’t help but chuckle.  So many faces, so many voices, it’s dizzying but great.  It doesn’t take long before he’s swept up in the chaos of celebration.  Some people he hasn’t seen in years, both friends and family, are there.  After a few beers, Russ’s guard is down, and any previous thoughts about not wanting a party are gone.  He’s caught up in conversations he won’t remember in the morning, but he’s sure he’ll remember the feeling of being thought of by all these people for a long time to come.

After rounds of junk room and a large slice of cake, Russ is full.  Some of the crowd has thinned, even though it’s not midnight.  In a corner, Russ leans back in a chair, his best buddy Ed by his side.

“You sure you won’t have another beer?” Ed asks, smirking.

Russ shakes his head, chuckling. “And get a beer gut like you, man?  No thanks.  Looks like I’ll be working out extra hard at the gym this week whenever I can afford it.”

Ed pats his belly and smiles.  “You’d have to go a long way to beat me.  But anyway, tell me, Russ.  It’s been too damn long since we talked.  Is there a special girl in your life?  Time’s tickin’ away if you ever wanna settle down.”

Russ frowns.  “Who said anything about settling down?”

Ed straightens in the chair and regards his friend.  “Hey, that was years ago, man.”

Russ shakes his head.  “Nah, there’s no one.”  He’s sure to put a stop to Ed’s attempt at getting him to talk about something that has no bearing on his life at present.  Despite what he says, Russ’s mind goes to a place he’s surprised.  Maybe it’s the alcohol talking, but Russ half-smiles and says, “Well, there’s this one girl, but she doesn’t really count.”

“Do tell.”

“It’s nothing.  I shouldn’t even be thinkin’ about her.”

“Okay, now you have to tell me.”

“Well, her name’s Shelley, and beyond that, I don’t know much about her.”

“So, how’d you meet her?  Online dating?”

Russ laughs.  “Nope, not even gonna go there.  You know it’s next to impossible to meet someone with my schedule.”

“Well, how’d you meet?” Ed persists.

“You ain’t gonna believe this, but she was at one of the rest stops along my route.  Somewhere in Ohio, past Cleveland.”

“Sounds romantic.”  Ed chuckles and finishes his beer.  “Sure you don’t want another?  You only turn the big 4-0 once, man.”

“Oh, what the hell?  Why not?  Sure.”

Ed leaves and returns with two bottles of some brand of Christmas ale.  The foamy liquid gold slides down Russ’s throat with ease.

“I doubt I’ll see her again,” Russ says.  “I think she might be homeless or somethin’.”

“Dude, that’s messed up.  You’ve got a thing for a homeless chick?  What’s her best feature?  The lice in her hair or the trash bag she wears?”

Russ stops smiling.  “Don’t be a jerk, Ed.”

“Sorry, sorry.”  Ed sets down his beer and holds up both hands in mock-surrender.  “Just a bad joke, but c’mon, pal, you don’t really think you’re gonna score with a chick like that.”

“No.”  Russ smirks, but he can’t help the prickle of sadness that creeps into his heart.  He hasn’t had any feelings for a woman in years.  The long hours on the road, the time away from home–it keeps him busy and thinking about anything other than falling in love again.

Ed slaps Russ on the back, snapping him out of his thoughts.  “Look at the time!  It’s almost the New Year.  I gotta find Susan.  Find a girl somewhere in here to kiss, man.  At least give yourself that.”

Russ smiles and shakes his head.  “Go get your wife, you crazy son-of-a-bitch.”

The TV in the corner above the bar shows the ball getting ready to drop in Times Square.  For how close 42nd Street is for Russ, he’s never been there on New Year’s Eve, but as the seconds count down to 2018, everyone in the room chants the numbers backward.  Arms are around Russ, pulling him into the fray, and he finds himself counting down with them.

Then…

“Happy New Year!”

Someone grabs Russ and lays a wet smacker on his lips, and when he pulls back, he’s stunned to see a girl who’s barely legal.  

“Who are you?” he asks.

She only laughs and darts out of the room, leaving Russ bemused.

“Happy birthday, old man,” he mutters.

 

Don’t get scammed by companies like Reader’s Magnet

I got a call from these scammers today and left it go to voicemail because I didn’t recognize the number. I was skeptical and looked them up. I had every right to be! Read this warning, fellow writers/authors, and don’t be fooled!

Inside the Inkwell

Typesetter

As I’ve mentioned previously, everyone wants to rip you off as an author by taking advantage of your hopes and dreams. Scammers make me sick. I’ve had a few calls from them lately pretending to be huge media companies that offer promotion for authors. These scammers do their homework, and so I assume they work on commission. They reference your book by name and will give it praise when they call and might mention that it was found by a Literary Talent Scout (as if those exist—agents and publishers get so many queries every day that they don’t need to go looking for talent! Talent goes to them. It’s a system that has been long established.)

I listened to the first guy’s spiel so I was familiar with it; they wanted between hundreds and thousands of dollars to do worldwide promotion on a book of mine that was far from…

View original post 789 more words

Excerpt from Mile Marker 139 (WIP) – Chapters 7-8

Chapter Seven: Mike Popkins

“What are you doing here, Mike?” Janice asks as she fills the cappuccino machine with fresh espresso beans.

Mike steps up to the counter.  “Can I order something?”

“You know it’s on the house, Mike,” says Walt at the register.

The rest area is almost empty.  Somehow, the cheap decorations hanging from the ceiling around Brewing Up Some Happiness and the Christmas music in the background do little to bring any holiday cheer.

Mike waves Walt off.  “Nah, you know I can’t do that.  Just a cup of the black stuff.  Is it fresh?”

Brewed ten minutes ago,” Janice states.  “That fresh enough?”

“Works for me.”

A minute later, Janice places a cup of joe in front of Mike.  “You didn’t answer my question.”

“I’m working, darlin’, like always.”  Mike lifts the cup to his mouth and takes a careful sip.  He’s standing at the end of the counter where customers pick up their orders, but since no one is in sight, he stays.

“It’s still early,” Janice says.

Mike checks his watch, and Janice smirks.  “5:00 a.m.  Just another hour.”

“You’re one of the only people I know, Mike, who still wears a watch.”  Janice chuckles.

“Easier than pulling my phone outta my pocket to check the time, ain’t it?  So, the kiddos with your parents?”

“Like always.  Mommy starts too early.”  Janice yawns, then purses her lips at him.  “Mike, make the three hour trip and see your family.”

“Hmph.  Weather’s supposed to turn for the worst in a few hours.  Thanks for the coffee.”  Mike finishes the drink, crushes the cup in his hand, and tosses it in the trash.  “Merry Christmas, Janice.”

With that, he leaves to clean the bathrooms.  Just as he’s coming out of the men’s room and taking down the “closed for cleaning” sign, he sees her walking out of the ladies’ room.

“Oh, excuse me,” she says, startled by his presence.

“Ah, you’re inside again.”  Mike smiles at her.

“Well, I can’t very well, um…you know…out there.”  She blushes.

Mike steps aside to let her pass, but she holds up just outside of the bathrooms.  “What’s your name?” he asks, hoping his eyes speak the concern his voice doesn’t.

“Shelley.”

“Well, Shelley, are you like me and don’t have anyone to spend Christmas with?”

Shelley frowns and takes a step away.  Mike follows.  He has nowhere else to be.  The rest stop is clean, and time is winding down to the end of his shift.  

“You never asked me my name all these times you’ve talked to me before,” Shelley says.

“Well, I’m asking now, and since you told me, I’ll share mine.  It’s Mike.”

“I can see that by your nametag.”  Shelley smiles a little.

Mike chuckles.  “Good try, but let me ask you again–are you alone for Christmas?”

Shelley pulls a cigarette out of her pocket and jerks her head toward the doors.  “You want to take a break?”

“I’d rather not in this cold, but considerin’ what we’re about to talk about, maybe it’s a smart idea.  Just let me grab my coat.”

Shortly thereafter, Mike and Shelley are shivering as they try to find some protection from the wind by standing where two walls of the building meet.

“No, I don’t have anyone,” Shelley says, “at least not around here.”

“Same here, young lady.”

“What about…no wife, girlfriend?”

“Girlfriend, at my age?”  Mike tries to pass it off as a joke, but when Shelley frowns, he says, “I’m a widower.”

“Oh, I’m sorry.”  Shelley’s voice barely carries over the wind.  She drops her gaze to the ground.

Mike watches as she taps the ashes from the end of her cigarette.  “Her name was Barb.  Died four years ago.  We were married thirty-five years.”

“That must have been really hard.”  

Mike nods, waiting for Shelley to meet his eyes.  When she does, he is left gaping at the emptiness in them.  They stare through him like two dark tunnels.  If he’s not careful, he might lose himself in their depths.

“It was, but you know, that’s part of life, ain’t it?  Death.”

“Yeah.”

Mike finishes his cigarette.  “I’m headed back inside.  You ain’t staying out here, are you?”

“No, I guess not.  It’s getting too cold for me to be outside for so many hours.”

When they arrive back in the warmth, Mike says, “Look, I know you’ve got something eatin’ at you.  I know sadness when I see it, but I also hate it when someone tries to get me to talk about what’s on my mind when I don’t want to.  Just know…if you wanna talk something, my ears are open.”

“Thanks.”  Shelley half-smiles.  “I guess you need to get back to work, huh?”

“Yeah, probably for the best.  Merry Christmas, Shelley.”

Mike walks away and doesn’t look back to see if Shelley sees the heaviness of every step he takes.

.

 

Chapter Eight: Sarah Wilcox

“Deck the halls with boughs of holly, fa-la-la-la-laaa, la-la-la-laaaa!”

Sarah joins in the raucous singing with the rest of her family.  Gathered in her aunt and uncle’s house, it’s never a boring moment with the Wilcox family is under one roof.  The talk and the drinks flow like a steady stream.  Four generations are crammed into a bungalow meant to hold about half the number of people, but even shoulder-to-shoulder, the Wilcoxes know how to have a good time.

“So, you had to work this morning?” asks Sarah’s aunt Anne, every syllable slurred together.

Sarah smiles at the glass of Merlot in her aunt’s hand and wonders how she doesn’t spill it on her Christmas sweater.  To be safe, Sarah scoots back a couple of inches from her dear aunt, who knows how to make merry with the bottom of a bottle of wine every holiday season.  “Yeah, but I got off at noon.  Hey, what number are you on?”

“What’s that, dear?”

Sarah chuckles.  “Never mind.  Did you have a good morning?”

“Oh, yeah… y’know, Reagen and Jayden made out like bandits.  O’course, what good is it not to spoil ‘em rotten, eh?  They’re grandkids for a reason.  Hey, what’re you gonna pop a baby out?”

“Um…”  Sarah struggles to find the words to answer such a blunt statement, but her cousin, Zelda, rescues her.

“Hey, I wanted to show you something, Sarah,” Zelda says.  “Mom, stop it, you’re embarrassing yourself and everyone around you,” she adds to Anne.

Anne hiccups.  “Don’t know what you mean, Z.”

Zelda rolls her eyes and clutches Sarah by the upper arm.  “C’mon.”

Once they’re in one of the back rooms, Sarah asks, “So, what’s so interesting?”

Zelda’s hands are resting on her midsection.  She smiles, gazing at her belly, and then lifts her eyes to Sarah.  “Well, along the lines of what my mom was saying…”

“You’re pregnant?  Congrats!”  Sarah squeals and hugs her cousin.

“Thanks.  Unlike my mom and about half the people here, I’m not drinking.  We’re still really early on, but if all goes well, it’ll be in the middle of July when this little one makes his or her debut in the world.”

“And Jake?  How are things between you?”

Zelda bites her lip, but then smiles.  To Sarah, it appears forced.  “Better than they were last summer.  He’s been clean for months now, but you know, it’s been something he’s struggled with off and on for years.”

“I can only imagine, Zelda.  Gosh, I’m so sorry.”

“Thanks.  What’s the worst of it is that I didn’t know for years.  What kind of wife and mother doesn’t know her husband and the father of her kids has an addiction?”

Sarah places a hand on Zelda’s upper arm.  “Hey, don’t be so hard on yourself.  We’ve always been more like sisters than cousins.  You can tell me anything.  You know that.”

Zelda sighs.  “I know, and thank you, Sarah.  I mean it.  Sometimes I wonder if he’s just looking for another guy to supply him with the stuff.”

“It’s pretty easy to come by, sadly.  If he wanted to, he could’ve gotten a new dealer months ago, Zelda.  I know a thing or two about it.  A couple of months in college filled with making stupid choices in friends who smoked weed almost made me flunk out.  That’s why I graduated a year later than planned.”

“Oh, Sarah, I had no idea.  You?  Really?  But you always seemed so, I don’t know…”

“The good girl?  Yeah, I was.  My parents don’t talk about it with anyone, but you get it.  I’m not proud of it, and I’d never go back to doing that again, but sometimes people get desperate, want to escape the pressures around them, or they’re just looking for a good time.”

Sarah watches Zelda as her cousin only five years her senior shakes her head, so much going unsaid.  

“Well, come on, let’s get back out there before we’re missed.  You know Grams has made her devil’s chocolate cake and won’t be too pleased if it’s not all eaten up before we leave.”

Sarah smiles in spite of the lingering heaviness.  “Sounds good to me.”

As she joins her family, although the jovial talk, singing, and laughter rings true, an undercurrent of concern for those who don’t have it so good hangs in the back of Sarah’s mind.  Jake, whose drug addiction has nearly broken his marriage; her aunt Anne who drinks too much; and a mysterious woman at the rest stop who has all the look of someone with her own sad history are the ghosts who haunt young Sarah.  Their songs aren’t about decking the halls.

As she partakes in her grandma’s cake, Sarah stares at the empty chair at the head of the table.  Grandpa haunts the space across the distance of time.  He picks up his cup of coffee and makes cheers toward Sarah.

Go knock ‘em dead, kiddo.

Sarah chokes down a mouthful of cake, washes it down with coffee.  Coffee.  A drink shared.  Pain shared.

Pay It Forward…A Reminder

‘Tis the season…

To be jolly?

To go into debt?

To give.

Because God first gave to us His son, Jesus.

In the midst of the craziness of shopping, stressing, overspending, and stressing some more, it’s easy to lose sight of what matters.  Whether you’re Christian or not, whatever reason you celebrate Christmas–whether religious, secular, or both–I believe that this season can bring out the very best in people.

Goodwill toward men, indeed.

I went into this holiday season trying to not overspend on gifts.  Having three young kids, it’s easy to fall into the trap of buying them things they just don’t need, especially when they’re inundated with commercials for the latest hot toys.  What five-year-old doesn’t tell their mom at least once an hour, “I want that, Mom?”

It’s a trap.

Seriously.

No joke.

I kid you not.

Kid.  Ha, I was talking about kids and wanting stuff.  Anyway, pardon my bad sense of humor.  I digress…

I fell into the same money pit this year by spending too much on my family, and I was torn between wanting to give, give, give and wanting to take some of the things back.  In the end, a mom’s desire to see her kids’ excitement on Christmas morning when it came time to open the gifts won out.

However, I am vowing to go about this insanity differently next year.  I want to donate or give to charity the same amount that I spend in gifts on my family.  That’s not an original idea, but I heard it somewhere, and it stuck with me.  I’m up for the challenge, and I’m not all talk. (Update: This was written in 2016. Now it’s 2017, and I am happy to say I lived up to this challenge of giving equally to charity what I spent on gifts.)

See, when I put my mind and heart to something, I can accomplish it.  Case in point: Almost two years ago, I sat down and said I was serious about writing an original story.  I would write at least fifteen minutes a day.  If I missed a day, okay, but I wouldn’t let more than two days pass without writing.  Ten months later, I had my first draft completed.  That was almost a year ago.  Now, I have the first draft of a second novel completed that’s currently being read and edited by a writers group at the library.  I have self-published my first novel after going through the arduous process of querying a hundred literary agents and getting many rejections, but I kept at it.  I am well into writing my third novel.  I have the first chapter written of my fourth and have an idea for a fifth. (2017 update: I have finished drafts of novels three and four.  I am well into my fifth.  I self-published novel number two.  I have ideas for six and seven.)

pablo (13)So, if I can write and be dedicated to it, I can be more generous next Christmas.  I can give more to those who really are in need and give less to my own family, who already has plenty of things.  We don’t need more stuff.

You might think, “Okay, that’s all well and good to make plans about what you’re going to do next year, but what are you doing about it right now?”

I do regularly give to charity.  I sponsor two children through Children International, but for me, that wasn’t enough this Christmas.  I became aware of a family in need.  The father had just lost his job, and having a kid to support, you can understand why I wanted to help out.  Also, this family is close to heart, so if there was something I could do to help them, it would be all the more important to me.

I didn’t have the means to personally give them much as far as money goes, so I organized a Go Fund Me campaign and rallied my friends and family for several days to give to this family.  It was a beautiful thing to see the response.  Many gave, and it’s not a matter of how much you give, but giving what you can.  In the end, I was so happy to be able to give them a sizable amount of money to help them pay their bills and put food on the table, and while I was a part of that, I cannot and do not take full credit.  So many people stepped up, and I love that.

Another friend told me about the local Elk’s Club wanting to give a large box of food and gifts to local families in need, and she thought of the family I was supporting.  Needless to say, I got in touch with the Elk’s Club, and they were so generous and kind to deliver such a box to this family. (2017 update: This family is doing well this Christmas, although her sister lost a child and doesn’t have the money to pay for much of a Christmas for her other kids because of funeral costs. Not only did the family I helped last year help this devastated family, but I was also moved to send them some gifts. There is always someone in need who you can bless.)

In the midst of all this, I have my own troubles, but to help others lifts the burden of my problems.  I firmly believe that reaching out and helping others is one of the best ways to help yourself.  Everyone benefits.  There is nothing lost, for, you see, love has no end.  It’s funny how the more love you give, the more love grows.  The more love you receive.

So, I did my little part in paying it forward.  I had no expectation of getting anything in return from those I helped, so you can imagine how moved I was to be on the receiving end of the generosity of others who felt they wished to help my family.  I never asked for it, nor expected it.

A Christmas card arrived from my church a couple of weeks ago with a hundred dollars in gift cards to a grocery store!  The card was simply signed “From your friends at church.”  I have recently expressed my heartache to some friends at church about the struggles my autistic son and my family are going through, so I can only guess that someone did this kind deed because of that.  I cannot be sure.

As if that weren’t enough, on Christmas Eve, my husband and I dressed to play Mary and Joseph and were waiting in a classroom for our entrance into the sanctuary when a friend approached me and handed me an envelope.  “It’s not really a Christmas gift,” she said, “but a couple of us from our ChristCare group (a Bible study group of sorts) wanted to help you out.”  I smiled, thanked her, and tucked the envelope in my purse.  Hours later, after the service was over, the kids were in bed, and the presents were under the tree, I opened the envelope to find three hundred dollars inside and a note that said, “For your son’s therapies.”  Tears streamed down my face for the second time this Christmas season because of the kindness of others.

So, as another year winds down, I am thankful.  It started around Thanksgiving with the extra intention of choosing kindness.  As Christmas came upon us, I made the extra effort to pay it forward in terms of generosity, just one form of kindness.  And it certainly came back around to touch me.

If you don’t believe that what goes around comes around, maybe you’ll think my story is just that–a nice little story.  To me and many others, it’s more.  Much more.  May we all go into the New Year with a sense of wanting to reach outside ourselves, and you’ll see.  It will come back to you.

Merry Christmas!

Like what you’ve read?  Please subscribe to my blog, where I post a new blog every Friday, including book reviews, which will resume in January 2018!

My novel, Lorna versus Laura, is available for only $2.99 here.

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Poetry Tuesday – Dayspring from Above

Softly, slowly the colors mix,

Sparking my soul alive

And bringing a bountiful harmony

Of peace from ages long since past.

Voices echo and fade

In a meadow of blissful dancing grasses,

Yet I cannot grasp the hidden wonders

Of this redeeming place.

The world happens over again,

And I fall yet fly,

Drifting into a transcending slumber,

Remembering why we loved in the beginning.

Time stands still in awe

At the purity of true happiness,

Invading the fragmented hearts

And yielding a wholeness of spirit.

Clear waterfalls gently slip

Over smooth stones,

Mingling waters from above with below,

Oneness.

Soaring high above the valley,

Music playing in majesty

Through my blessed ears,

My eyes seeing

Opportunity shining in each star.

Wavering winds hover

Around my body,

Daring to enter.

Dew rests on the blossoming rose,

Giving meaning to keep living.

Somehow, somewhere, someone is reaching

A higher understanding.

I am that one.

Like a rising sun,

A promise harbors

For a new day,

And I smile in reverence

At its beauty.

Dayspring has broken through.

06/06/02