Friday, May 26, 2017

#WATWB - Memorial Day Tribute

We Are The World Blogfest:
bringing positive news to light
 
On this Memorial Day week-end, we pay tribute to all those in the military who served, are serving, and especially to those who gave their lives to protect our freedoms. Thousands of lei are strung by volunteers from around O'ahu as a labor of love, and draped on gravesites at Punchbowl National Cemetery.
 
 
 
National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific - Punchbowl


 
Memorial Day
 Sad Reminders Row by Row
Tombs of the Unknown






Honor Guard Prepares
Posting of Fifty State Flags
Tribute to Deceased

 
Tribute from 442nd Division Vets Clubs
"Traditional Hula" Tribute



Lineup for Presentation of Flowers
Presentation of Floral Arrangements





 







Punchbowl Cemetery






View Within Punchbowl
In the Distance, Diamond Head
Memories Abound
 




 
Link to National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific site:
http://www.cem.va.gov/cems/nchp/nmcp.asp


Memorial Day is a day to remember 
the men and women who died
in the service of
the United States Armed Forces

*****     *****     *****

All photographs taken by Gail Baugniet during a  
Memorial Day Service 
at Punchbowl Cemetery, Honolulu, Hawaii

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Z is for ZIG-ZAG of RED #AtoZ #PoetryMonth

April #AtoZChallenge and #PoetryMonth
 
Three goals I had in mind while writing my collection of linked poetry:
1. To celebrate my appreciation of life
2. To experience the process of writing linked poetry, a form of Japanese renshi
3. To give thanks for and better appreciate a life well-lived.
 
The flowers are a colorful bonus for the #AtoZChallenge
 
***   ***   ***
 
Z is for Zig-Zag of Red and Zinnea
 
 
 
A ZIG-ZAG OF RED, STARS

A white-washed canvas,
still life with fireworks,
promises of an exciting display. 

Colors intended only for dreamers
burst before her eyes,
lighting up the blackness left by
a long forgotten sunset. 

A zig-zag of red, stars
too bright to track
spiral down.
She hears the sizzle as
they strike the ocean’s surface
like lava streaming from a cliff
to cool and form new land. 

Thoughts spew forth.
A mind once fallow
now overflows.
A rocket launch
of crackling practicality
explodes to reveal stunning possibilities.
 
***   ***   ***
 
Where do you get your best ideas, while lying in bed ready for sleep or watching the celebration of fireworks on a warm summer's eve? Mine seem to burst forth at the exact time I am without pencil and paper.
 
For your visits to my site in April and your many interesting comments,
Mahalo and Aloha,
Gail
 
 

 

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Y is for YOUR GOOD LIFE AHEAD #PoetryMonth #AtoZ

April #AtoZChallenge and #PoetryMonth
 
Three goals I had in mind while writing my collection of linked poetry:
1. To celebrate my appreciation of life
2. To experience the process of writing linked poetry, a form of Japanese renshi
3. To give thanks for and better appreciate a life well-lived.
 
The flowers are a colorful bonus for the #AtoZChallenge
 
***   ***   *** 
 

  
Y is for 
Your Good Life Ahead
and
Yellow Flowers:
Hibiscus
 and
Orchid
 


YOUR GOOD LIFE AHEAD
Unpaid leave; hospital stay
then home; empty-handed, again.
Cupboards lacking
Wallet bare. 
Part-time work, nights
at the old folks home.
Salted crackers and loose tea bags
From the commissary cart. 
One day you will be
rich as Midas, with golden
sunshine gracing the lanai and
mangoes ripening on the shelf. 
Every day, another holiday.
***   ***   ***
If you never give up, the ups and downs of life begin to form a pattern where soon the gullies and mountains begin to look more like potholes and molehills. . . with 'lots of plateau' in between.
That's a good thing, right? 
 

Friday, April 28, 2017

We Are The World #WATWIC Promoting Positive News

We Are The World Blogfest aims at promoting positive news.

 
Here is a quick checklist of guidelines:
Keep your post to below 500 words, as much as possible
All we ask is you link to a human news story on your blog on the last Friday of each month,
one that shows love, humanity, and brotherhood.
Join us on the last Friday of each month in sharing news.
 
Check out Michelle Wallace's site for full information about her vision,
her fabulous co-hosts, and the blog hop list of participants where you can sign up: http://www.writer-in-transit.co.za/we-are-the-world-blogfest/

***   ***   ***
 
My link for April is to a human news story that tells about how some ties-that-bind between new friends last for a lifetime.

When I write my mystery novels, I do extensive research for the settings, on-site whenever possible. For scenes set in Boston, I researched everything from the history of Faneuil Hall to the menu of Cheers Bar and the swans in the Public Gardens near Boston Common. On-line research extended to young patients at Children's Hospital and Dana-Farber’s Jimmy Fund Clinic.

Excerpts from current, heart-warming news stories always catch my eye. This is one of them.  

“It was a huge source of comfort for both of us to know that
someone else understood what we each were going through,”


April 07, 2017

Some connections can never be broken. Jimmy Fund Facebook re-connects two cancer patients 13 years later. more ›  
Link to full story:
http://blog.jimmyfund.org/2017/04/jimmy-fund-facebook-re-connects-two-cancer-patients-13-years-later/?_ga=1.171038496.1293744457.1459373104

***   ***   ***
 
The Boston Marathon Jimmy Fund Walk is September 24, 2017
 
 

X is for eXPRESS THE LONGINGS #PoetryMonth #AtoZ

April #AtoZChallenge and #PoetryMonth
 
Three goals I had in mind while writing my collection of linked poetry:
1. To celebrate my appreciation of life
2. To experience the process of writing linked poetry, a form of Japanese renshi
3. To give thanks for and better appreciate a life well-lived.
 
The flowers are a colorful bonus for the #AtoZChallenge
 
***   ***   ***
 
X is for eXpress and  Xyris Difformis

 
eXPRESS THE LONGINGS
 
Paris in the ‘70’s inspired
you to express
the longings deep within
To hear the music that your soul played
Whenever spirits craved
Encouragement 

Euphoria filled the air as you
Strolled the boulevards
and Champs Élysée,
Searching 

Diamonds were not treasures worth
your heart strings, in a place
where wine
and chocolate
Co-exist
 
***   ***   ***
 
Is youth anymore memorable than current times? For myself, I prefer to continue making memories rather than sitting back and reveling in the playful days gone by. Every once in a while, though, it is fun to reminisce.
 
 

 

Thursday, April 27, 2017

W is for WICKED #PoetryMonth #AtoZ

April #AtoZChallenge and #PoetryMonth
 
Three goals I had in mind while writing my collection of linked poetry:
1. To celebrate my appreciation of life
2. To experience the process of writing linked poetry, a form of Japanese renshi
3. To give thanks for and better appreciate a life well-lived.
 
The flowers are a colorful bonus for the #AtoZChallenge
 
***   ***   ***
 
 W is for Wicked and Wisteria Flowering Tree

 
 
Wicked 

Rain on my feet creates a
cool sensation. A breeze
whispers under gun metal
sky lined with telephone wires
where birds offer songs to wake
the surrounding neighborhood. 

Peaceful here on my lanai
before morning traffic fills
the boulevard with restless
thoughts; Bloated, useless, wicked.
Hearts become heavy under
the burden. I wait out the
feeling as skies tinge with blue. 

Light sprays from the horizon,
while tires spin on pavement.
Rows of birds perched on wires
above, set moods for the day.
Nature slowly unfolds at
its own pace.
 
***   ***   ***
 
How powerful one feels when in control of how their day begins.
Imagine starting each day in a peaceful garden,
while birds chirp and cool breezes stir the fragrance of blossoming trees.
Is this better than sloshing coffee on wrinkled pants while rushing to catch the bus or train to work? 

 

V is for VELVET AIR #PoetryMonth #AtoZ

 April #AtoZChallenge and #PoetryMonth
 
Three goals I had in mind while writing my collection of linked poetry:
1. To celebrate my appreciation of life
2. To experience the process of writing linked poetry, a form of Japanese renshi
3. To give thanks for and better appreciate a life well-lived.
 
The flowers are a colorful bonus for the #AtoZChallenge
 
***   ***   ***
 
 V is for Velvet Air and Volcan Phlox
 

 

VELVET AIR
 
With bloated hopes, you share
ideas. Each word a chosen
pearl. On velvet air,
great thoughts pour
forth. Your mind a dervish
whirl. Can greatness be so far
behind, with wisdom such
as this? Step back
enjoy
oh, wizened one, a most creative
bliss. One day, you say, a smile
in play, awards will all
be won. Your confidence wrapped
up in silk,
Blue Ribbon dreams are
Fun. 

To me, writing rhyming poetry is as much fun as
dreaming about winning a blue ribbon.
What would you compare to the art of writing poetry?
 
***   ***   ***

 

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

U is for UNEXAMINED MADNESS #AtoZChallenge Poetry

April #AtoZChallenge and #PoetryMonth
 
Three goals I had in mind while writing my collection of linked poetry:
1. To celebrate my appreciation of life
2. To experience the process of writing linked poetry, a form of Japanese renshi
3. To give thanks for and better appreciate a life well-lived.
 
The flowers are a colorful bonus for the #AtoZChallenge
 
***   ***   ***
 
U is for Unexamined Madness and Umbrella Palm 

 

UNEXAMINED MADNESS
 
No war, no pollution
Not global arming*
Or racism 

Nuclear threats, bigotry,
High cost of living,
And joblessness 

Nothing will be resolved
Until unexamined madness
Of Self-loathing and
Bloated egos ends. 

Denial of equality
Continues to
Generate war, pollution,
Racism and bigotry 

Stop the denial and know:
I am you
You are me
Together 

*Global arming: This began as a typo but seemed even more appropriate than the intended: global warming.
Would you agree?

(Author's note: This is an apolitical poem, written in August, 2015.)

***   ***   ***


 

Monday, April 24, 2017

T is for TOGETHER #AtoZ Poetry

April #AtoZChallenge and #PoetryMonth
 
Three goals I had in mind while writing my collection of linked poetry:
1. To celebrate my appreciation of life
2. To experience the process of writing linked poetry, a form of Japanese renshi
3. To give thanks for and better appreciate a life well-lived.
 
The flowers are a colorful bonus for the #AtoZChallenge
 
***   ***   ***
 
 T is for Together and Tulips
 
 
Together 

Writing is a solitary activity
sitting alone for hours
at typewriter or computer
with tablet or notepad.
Inside the author’s head
drumming up ideas
scenarios, settings,
a plot slowly forms.
Characters dance and
story line develops.
Everything comes together
to build tension and
create meaning.
To tell an engaging tale
and elicit smiles, or tears. 

A solitary pursuit evolves
Becoming society’s pleasure.
 
***   ***   ***

Whether you hold strictly to writing everything by hand using pen and notepad, or you prefer to type everything directly into your computer/word processor, the process is a solitary activity. Do you later share the fruits of your labor or keep them tucked away from prying eyes?  

 
 

Saturday, April 22, 2017

S is for SMILING BACK #AtoZ

April #AtoZChallenge and #PoetryMonth
 
Three goals I had in mind while writing my collection of linked poetry:
1. To celebrate my appreciation of life
2. To experience the process of writing linked poetry, a form of Japanese renshi
3. To give thanks for and better appreciate a life well-lived.
 
The flowers are a colorful bonus for the #AtoZChallenge
 
***   ***   ***
 
 S is for Smiling Back and Sunflowers

 
Smiling Back

From shadows,
smiling back at me,
clear memories
of frothy rapids
while tubing down
an apple-scented river. 

Company softball games,
cheering on my teammates
win or lose, celebrating
El Torito style. 

All too soon, highways
move me state to state,
major life changes
blinding me to loss. 

Above the clouds
endless open skies
ease me from the past; with
lazy eagerness, promises appear
of another new beginning.
 
***   ***   *** 
 
Do you need to understand everything the poet is saying to appreciate a poem? Or is sailing off in whatever direction a specific phrase sends you, like a word-association excursion, more to your liking?

Friday, April 21, 2017

R is for RIOTS AND REBELLION #AlohaFriday #AtoZ

April #AtoZChallenge and #PoetryMonth
 
Three goals I had in mind while writing my collection of linked poetry:
1. To celebrate my appreciation of life
2. To experience the process of writing linked poetry, a form of Japanese renshi
3. To give thanks for and better appreciate a life well-lived.
 
The flowers are a colorful bonus for the #AtoZChallenge
 
***   ***   ***
 
 R is for Riots and Rebellions (and incongruously . . .for this beautiful Rose)

Photo by Gail M Baugniet
Taken in the village where my father's great grandparents settled.
 
RIOTS AND REBELLION
 
Riots
Society on the edge
Politics, redefining lives 

Anger
Mankind engaged in war
Family structure, realigned 

Rebellion
Control in flux
Freedom, the goal 

Question not
what you see, but
the lack of change
 
***   ***   *** 
 
What emotions surface when one has no control over circumstances?
 
 

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Q is for QUESTIONING SOULS #AtoZChallenge Poetry

April #AtoZChallenge and #PoetryMonth
 
Three goals I had in mind while writing my collection of linked poetry:
1. To celebrate my appreciation of life
2. To experience the process of writing linked poetry, a form of Japanese renshi
3. To give thanks for and better appreciate a life well-lived.
 
The flowers are a colorful bonus for the #AtoZChallenge
 
***   ***   ***
 
Q is for Questioning Souls and Queen Victoria Century Plant 

 
QUESTIONING SOULS

No! My education
is too lacking.
The words all
come out wrong.
Why would anybody
even care? 

Marathons are
not for weak,
questioning souls
but for
strong minds,
solid knees,
and muscular hearts 

Yes. I can
believe in myself. I can
stop braiding negativity
into disbelief. I can
start spinning confidence
into success. 

***   ***   ***
 
Questioning your worth - whether you do it to yourself or someone else feels it is their duty to do it to you - is non-productive for everyone. Better to believe in yourself and to help others to do the same.

 

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

P is for POSSIBILITIES #PoetryMonth #AtoZ

April #AtoZChallenge and #PoetryMonth
 
Three goals I had in mind while writing my collection of linked poetry:
1. To celebrate my appreciation of life
2. To experience the process of writing linked poetry, a form of Japanese renshi
3. To give thanks for and better appreciate a life well-lived.
 
The flowers are a colorful bonus for the #AtoZChallenge
 
***   ***   ***
 
 P is for Possibilities and Poinsettias

 

POSSIBILITIES

There are words
I want to build on
and to use as titles
of poems. Phrases with meaning: 

Rendering a Thought Visible

Or

Attempt at the Impossible

But my page is blank
Not barren, only empty.
As the leaves of autumn
shrivel and blow away,
so has my inspiration.
Leaving behind only
Possibilities. 

Inspired by the works of Belgian artist René Magritte and an essay by Marcel Paquet: The Enigma of Poetry.

 
Do other mediums inspire/inform your poetic musings?
 
 
***   ***  ***