Friday, October 16, 2015

Age

We are in the ocean
        the ebb and flow
        the push and pull
        the rocking to and fro
        like a human metronome.

We see it rise
        and still we are unprepared
        when the wall of waves comes bearing
        down, knocking our feet into the air.
        Its roar deafens; it blinds us by its glare.

The wave recedes--
        its foamy fingers claw furtively in sand
        trying desperately to hold onto the land
        before being hauled back into the sea's command
        leaving behind only the debris of the damned.

Whole houses left abandoned--
         a lifetime of wishes and burdens
         whorled together and curdled
         into hardened ears that hear the gurgle
         of days ordinary and days uncertain.


While deep beneath the sea
         the wave recoils, slipping through
         bony fingers growing from the ocean slough,
         roiling past silver threads of minnow schools,
         diving deep into nameless depths murky and blue.

Here deep sea demons haunt:
         behemoth beasts stalk stealthily,
         giant tube worms suck, vampire squids boogie,
         spider crabs skitter, wolffish howl hoarsely,
         fangtooth fish crack open their quarry.

Still admist the gloom,
         bioluminescence blooms warm and white
         like stars emerging in the nascent night;
         jellyfish float like angels in flight
         luminous and velvety as a newborn's delight.

In the dark, a cauldron bubbles,
         new life forever rises in the silence
         orbs of vapor carrying the earth's essence
         until at last, it breaks at the surface
         under the watch of the sun's bright brilliance.
     


       

What Alice Forgot

What Alice ForgotWhat Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Liane Moriarty is my guilty pleasure. Chick lit with a brain. As Moriarty sprinkles her teasers that keep me turning the pages, I think, "Liane, you devil, you know I can't put this down and there are dishes to do!" This one is all about second chances, and the opportunity and ability to change. If I have a gripe about Moriarty is that she squeezes an extra novels worth of info in the epilogues of her books, but I will be reading all of her novels I can get my hands on.


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The Twelve

The Twelve (The Passage, #2)The Twelve by Justin Cronin
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Cronin is an excellent writer. He can get into the head of multiple characters and make them all unique. He can describe action sequences with alacrity and make you feel like you are witnessing it yourself. He can make vampires, viruses, ghosts, immortality totally plausible. And I like that a novel that has this much blood in it also has room for characters who believe in God and they are the sane ones. I would recommend this to anyone who likes their vampires a little more horrifying than sparkling in the sun...BUT I would also recommend waiting til the third one comes out and reading them altogether. I read The Passage a couple of years ago, and several characters and incidents were referenced that I wish I could recall with greater clarity. Also, the first half of this novel seems pointless...characters are introduced only to die, but some resurface later in the book, and the others I am guessing will show up in the third in some form. Cronin is teaching us patience...but darn it, release the third already!


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The Martian

The MartianThe Martian by Andy Weir
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This was an excellent idea. Put a guy on Mars and come up with real life catastrophes and real science fixes. Although some of the science was way over my head, I could appreciate (and take on trust) that some good math and some duct tape could save your life. (when your kids complain that they'll never use math again, make them read this book). I also enjoyed the feeling you walked away with....that as bad as things are, if you study it out, take the problem apart, and solve it bit by bit, you can do it...you can do the impossible. I think this why this book is so popular and became a movie with Matt Damon...it is a very real, but very hopeful book. That being said, it screams for a good editor. Originally self-published, I think it could have benefited with some guiding. There are 2 major p.o.v., which are fine, but then suddenly there is another narrative or p.o.v. that jars the reader, and disappears, never to be used again (the history of the tarp). Some of the story arc gets lost in the switch of the two p.o.v. as well; a little editing could have made more suspense, greater character development, and helped the lay reader understand the tech part better (just a few tables, charts, or diagrams could have helped out a ton.) Overall a great story, though I am guessing the fleshed out movie might be better.....


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And the Mountains Echoed

And the Mountains EchoedAnd the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is not a novel in the regular sense, but more accurately a collection of interconnected short stories. But each story is well told and the characters all fully drawn and believeable. Seeing different parts of the whole through different eyes gave the whole story something better than if it had been told in a traditional way. It helped carry the universality of Hosseini's theme of sacrifice and family. My favorite of Hosseini's books.


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