Saturday, September 15, 2018

RIDING ON A WAVE & CIRCLING By Adrienne Crawford

"Riding on a wave"  By Adrienne Crawford

The surf splashes
Suddenly on mystic beaches.
Moon shining down
Surrendering it’s passion
And love again is new.
Stars twinkling their idea
Of how light should be.
Air filled with anticipation.
And life is fulfilling itself
As the night sky brims
With the promise of enlightenment.
All is well in the heavens.
And angels tread lightly to
The music of celestial hymns.
When will the true meaning
Of time reveal itself?
When will we know the end
Of nature as we experience it?
What will be the measure?
Of all things weighed
In the balance?
Hope springs eternal.
And eventually all living
Creatures venture out
At night.
Just to see the moonbeam
Shadows fall by the wayside.
And the world fulfills
It’s destiny---- the care
Of all the living.
You and me for the
Eternity to come.

"Circling" By Adrienne Crawford

I’m going around in a circle.
A holding pattern in the sky.
I want to land down.
I want to reach the dry,
Ground beneath my feet.
To touch the runway.
And start off with a sprint.
Going thru out my day.
To enter hours to come.
With a vision from the sun.
To help others see
The best way they can run.
And when the night rolls in.
I’ll total up the sum.
And measure those happy hours.
It rained and showered some.
And count myself blessed.
Cause I have survived.
And avoided the mess.
Another day to be alive.
So that the gifts inside of me.
Being ever fresh and new.
Are always ready to be shared
To show, I really care.

© Adrienne Crawford - Summerlin's Writer and Poets Workshop
Las Vegas, NV. 

Adrienne's poetry is available on 

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Wednesday, September 12, 2018

'NEW START' By Ginny Vennare (Sun City's Topic of the month)

Peroges and Sauerkraut

Last thing I remember was being in my car watching a huge red pick-up truck coming straight at me.  The rest was a blur.

The next thing I remember is the scurry of nurses and doctors around my hospital bed. Beeping and buzzing sounds took up large parts of my day. I could hear things but I was unable to respond.  There was a tube down my throat to help me breathe.

When I finally did come around they told me that I died…twice and they brought me back to life. Funny thing was, I didn’t see the light, or the dark or any deceased family member there to take me to paradise. I started to regret the lifestyle I lived. Maybe I was destined to go where there was only fire and brimstone.

I was told I had to have a heart transplant and I was lucky enough to be in the hospital at the same time someone else was dying with the same rare blood type and tissue match as mine.  I had been on the waiting list for a new heart for four months previously to this automobile accident but with the added trauma, my heart was failing fast.

I was an official member of the “zipper club.” The scar was from my Adams apple to the end of my sternum.  Not something you would want to show off at the beach.

The hospital stay will be in my mind forever, especially the food. Everything tasted like sawdust, except the toast: that tasted like cardboard. The worst part of this was that my wife refused to bring me some decent food that I could actually eat. What’s wrong with a McDonald’s double bacon cheese burger? It’s very nutritious! But…no…just because I was on a low-salt, low-fat, no taste diet I couldn’t have it.

I had to get up and use a walker on day three of the surgery.  Joanie the nurse just yanked me out of bed and said “OK let’s go.” She was a cute little thing and always in a good mood. As we started to walk I said “Whoa, excuse me but the back of my gown is open and my private parts are dangling in the breeze. “Ops, sorry about that.”                                                            
“What part are you sorry about Joanie, the gown or the dangling?”

“You have to start getting up and walking around to prevent pneumonia!”

“If it were up to me I’d rather just stay in bed and watch the Price is Right.”

“That’s not going to happen on my watch.”

The recovery was going well. I was getting stronger every day, but I was having strange cravings for food I never ate before.  The last day of my hospitalization I asked Joanie if she could get me some peroges and sauerkraut from the kitchen. She looked puzzled.

“You know you’re on a special diet and we probably don’t have that kind of food in the hospital kitchen anyhow.”

“Considering this is my last day I think I should be allowed to eat anything I want, like a prisoner’s last meal on death row.”

I decided to call my wife to see if she could get it for me. Much to my surprise she agreed and I was very much looking forward to eating it.

While I was waiting for my wife, I reflected on my life. My precious life.

I guess I could have been more generous with my money, God knows I could afford it. I never paid any attention to the pleads of St. Jude Hospital for children or the March of Dimes commercials on TV. I was more interested in buying a new car or presenting my girlfriend with another piece of jewelry. Yes, my girlfriend. I had been unfaithful to my wife and even after the affair was over, I didn’t have many regrets. My wife forgave me and decided to give me another chance but I didn’t change much.

I was still completely self-centered. I wouldn’t even help my brother when he called and asked  for a loan after he lost his job and got behind in his mortgage.  It wasn’t that I didn’t have the money; it was that a vacation in Hawaii was more important to me. I always put myself first.

My wife finally arrived with my peroges. I savored every morsel and smacked my lips. I enjoyed this meal more than any other I could remember.

The next day while gathering up my clothes to wear home, Joanie came in my room.  She was giggling. When I asked her what was up she told me that the donor of my heart was polish. That would explain my sudden appetite for my last meal…I guess.  Mr. Dombrowski. He was a janitor in the same hospital I was being discharged from. Everyone that knew him, loved him. He was always kind to others and had a huge family that he talked about all the time.  One of his children had muscular dystrophy and he donated a lot of his time and money to the MS Foundation. He would often go on errands for the hospital staff that were sometimes too busy to eat lunch. His wife would make a huge plate of stuffed cabbage that he put in the break-room for everyone to enjoy. I could see a little tear in Joanie’s eye as she talked about him. He deserved better than dying at age fifty.  I thanked Joanie for the information and then continued to get ready to leave.

My wife arrived to drive me home. I looked at her and said, “I love you, more today than ever.”  Then I told her about the janitor. Maybe I would be able to turn my life around and be worthy of these precious gifts he gave me: the heart and the peroges.

Mr. Dombrowski and I are both getting new starts.


© Ginny Vennare - Sun City Writers Workshop - Las Vegas, NV.

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Tuesday, September 11, 2018

'REMARKABLE TALENT' By Jerry Silvers (Topic of the month -Talent)

Remarkable talent existed throughout our history.

Let’s study the this portrait, painted three to four hundred years ago by a master artist named Rembrandt. From a blank canvas he had to mix his own oils and spend days detailing every line and imperfection on his subjects face and clothing. So precise is the drawing, it could be compared to a photograph just taken today. Also note the level of the room’s shadows and shading that draws your vision to the subject’s face. He has captured a moment in time and by the subject’s clothing his status in the community.

 Remarkable talent or genius.

 Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart 1756 to 1791. (He died at the young age of 35.)

At the age of five he started composing his own music and by the time he died he created 600 symphonies and operas. He was able to create his music from his head to paper, he transferred his music to each individual section of the orchestra and singers. His following today, after 300 years is as strong as ever, with concerts, recordings, movies and events.

Today we can discover remarkable talent, right in front of our television or tablet phone.

As I watch America Got Talent or American Idol, I observe these young people with so many God given talents. There cannot be no other reason as I watch as a five-year-old with a voice and moves of a professional star. I just know they had coaching, but yet, it’s not possible to create this remarkable talent, it has to be there and I am moved. Are we looking at, as some people would say, “An old soul?”

I would like to predict a few remarkable talented people who I feel will be admire 300 years from now as “Natural” talent, not artificial.

 Music: Michael Jackson, Rolling Stones, The Beatles

Dance: Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, The Nicholas Brothers, Gregory Hines.

Art: Thomas Kinkade, Pablo Picasso, Jackson Pollock

 Thomas Kinkade’s artwork.

I feel even three hundred years from now, people will admire and be inspired by the God given talent of our century.



©Jerry Silvers - Summerlin's Writers and Poets Workshop, Las Vegas, NV.

This month's topic: "Talent"

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Monday, September 10, 2018

'FRESH START' By Roger Storkamp

Fresh Start (taken in part for my memoirs posted on my blog,

My professional career spanned the last third of the twentieth century and completed its tenure in a year identified with three zeros, that number not occurring since the last millennium or until the next. I decided to avoid gainful employment any future year with even one zero. Back to work in year 2111.
First major life style change, a move to Las Vegas.
Laurie, my wife, asked, “Why Las Vegas?”
I shrugged. “No particular reason other than, like Mt. Everest, because it’s there.”
“Okay. I’ll pack my bags.”
Like a snake, I slithered out of my winter skin and entered a world sun-bleached and desert-brown from Minnesota’s alternating green and white.
My first foray into one of many active clubs in Del Webb Senior Community led to Sun City Writers Group. I have collected over one hundred of my creative writing exercises to selectively publish on my blog.
Day one, I set out to write the Great American Novel. Within the decade, I over achieved this goal by half: three American Novels and one set in outer space, all good but none great. Since then, a short play and two memoirs with a third, my own, in progress, of which this is a part.
Parallel to my literary pursuits, a musical challenge, specifically singing in St. Andrews church choir, followed by trying out with the Sun City Music Makers, a choral harmony group.
“What range do you sing?” A logical question from the director.
“The last time I participated in a choral group I still sang soprano.”
Without cracking a smile, he said, “Let’s hear you sing the scale.” To the pianist, “Give him a C.” Her name wasn’t Sam.
I sang up and down, each time to a higher and lower note.
“You’ve got a two-octave range. Good. Can you read music?”
“A bit.” My memory slid back to Sister Margot who taught weekly half-hour sessions for each of eight grades and directed our high school choir.
“If I told you to go to D flat on measure ten, could you find it?”
“You mean those little black things have names.”
A muffled chuckle. “Maybe you should re audition after a few sessions with the Silvertones.”
Eight years I participated in the suggested sing-along group, three of them as their president, before joining the Music Makers.  I continue singing with both choral groups and the church choir, expecting to continue throughout the next decade.
My concert exposure reintroduced me to acting on stage, dormant since high school. Drafted into a Sun City Community Theater musical, I have since taken roles in half a dozen plays, ending my career by drinking poison.
My literary involvements exceeded singing and acting performances: two book discussion groups, two writers’ groups, and two local critique groups and one on the internet.  I continue to write and edit my previous works to publish on my website/blog, currently a story about a five-year-old boy sent to Minnesota on the Orphan Train in 1899.
Regrets, I’ve had a few, too few to mention, not always my way. My philosophy of life, I may not always get what I want, but I usually learn to want what I get.
A breakdown of my anticipated eighty five years alive on this planet:
25 years preparing for a career
35 years in that career
25 years beyond my career (10 more anticipated)
Any remaining years beyond eighty-five, I intend to just idle away, probably lying on my back with life support tubes invading my body.

©Roger Storkamp - Summerlin's Writers and Poets Workshop - Las Vegas, NV.

Saturday, September 8, 2018


                       As a child dreaming of mythical characters, I read books about dragons rescuing glamorous princesses, who then move on to live fantasy lives where everything is beautiful and perfect. I knew growing up that my life would follow that evolution. I was certain the chapters in my book of life would be perfect. A successful career. Love, or at the very least, a great romance would follow.
                I worked hard through school, getting top grades. Involved and active throughout those years, I enjoyed school and tried to get the most from the experience. The desire to excel propelled me through a top college in Europe, winning awards as an outstanding student. During this time I also modeled throughout Europe in most of the major capital cities.
                It was no surprise that my final selection of a career moved me into the world of dragons and swans where my youthful dreams had often taken me. The entertainment industry certainly has both species. The beautiful stars, so very self centered and egocentric surround you. The famous author, Truman Capote, certainly called them right when he described them as swans. Preening and floating through life with very few cares.
                The dragons are the tyrants running the studio and independent production companies, who by spouting fire and yelling they have gotten their way through life. Feared and catered to, they produce films to please their own base satisfactions, stomping on lives and using people, then casting them aside for newer, tastier morsels to devour.
                Dragons and swans – you cannot move among them and be part of them without having it affect your own life. Yes, I achieved my dreams and far beyond my expectations as a young child. But there is a price. You have to understand and be willing to pay that price for success. Long hours, little private life, strenuous demands, morally looking the other way when you encounter unfairness, abuse and even drugs which the entertainment industry is riddled with. I feel blessed to have been able to walk my own path to success, but so many others fall along the way and are devoured by the dragons. 
                Today we are starting to hear more about the corruption in the entertainment industry.  Do I believe that it will change with time? No, it will change temporarily with all the publicity but in time will evolve back again to some people having great power and with power comes abuses. With great power comes obligations and some people will rise to the challenge of greatness and some will fail as it has always been and ever will be.
                To our young children today wanting a career in the entertainment industry. I say go for it, but be aware of what you will encounter. Be strong in your beliefs. Back it up with a good education and be aware there is life outside of the entertainment industry. If all fails you can still be successful in life. There is more to living as an adult than Dragons and Swans.

© Rena Winters - Summerlin's Writers and Poets Workshop - Las Vegas, NV.


Rena's Books are available on Amazon.Com

Awards and more:
2018 Winner 2nd Place Best Fiction Published "Holy Cause: Target America" - author

2018 Winner 3rd Place Best Fiction Published
"The Man with Evil Eyes" - co-author
2017 Winner 50 Great Writers You Should Be Reading,
Winner Freedom's Foundation & American Family Heritage Awards "My Little Corner of the World" TV writer
Winner Angel Award Best Family special "How to Change Your Life" - TV writer, co-host
Smurfs: The Inside Story of the Little Blue Characters - author
Instead of Therapy - author
I Pledge Allegiance" - contributing author

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Thursday, September 6, 2018


I have given you lots of nutritious cake

I have sought of knowledge and know 
how effects along the way

The influences as you grew were carefully considered

Full knowledge of your parenting and its tradition were the main


Never the less you have not flourished.

Your strong patterns set by tradition over the years seem to

Not influence your zest for living.

If you do not produce the expected

By this Holiday Season,

I must uproot your whole self

And try another starter

From my Mother’s Christmas cactus


©Warning Poetry by Stella Peterson - 

Waverly Writers Workshop - North Oaks, Mn.

August 2018

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Wednesday, September 5, 2018

'JESSE W. JAMES' By RaNae Watsabaugh

           Some old girls are arrayed with strands of lights or bright shutters. I wear a gun framed upon my walls.  My exterior is white. Green shutters stand silent guard over my sad memories. There’s a hole in my living room wall about the size of your fist.  Originally it was the size of a bullet, but because of souvenir hunters plucking off my plaster over the years, it became a gaping hole.

          Monday, April 3, 1882. As I recall, there was promise of a beautiful spring day in Missouri. The sun was shining. Zee, or Zerelda, the house mistress was in my kitchen cooking breakfast. Jesse, her husband, sat in the living room visiting with Bob and Charlie Ford, two fairly new members of the James gang.                      
          Jesse had just taken off his guns for the morning meal. He had killed 18 men with them, but Zee refused to let him wear them at the table. Being a pioneer husband, I saw him get up to help her. He climbed on a chair to dust and straighten a picture. Suddenly, Bob Ford drew a .44 caliber gun and shot Jesse in the back of the head.  He wasn’t the first to die within my walls.  There had been 3 deaths before him, but none died so violently.
          So, America's most famous outlaw died, not with a six-gun in his hand, but a feather duster.
          I heard Zee scream as she ran into the room and bent over Jesse.  The children saw their father dead, lying upon the floor in a pool of scarlet blood.
          Word spread quickly and a crowd gathered outside on the lawn.  Jesse’s son saw the crowd and assumed they meant harm to the family.  He lugged his father’s shotgun out of a closet and tried to aim it at the crowd.  Zee quietly removed it from his hands and put it aside. He hid his small freckled face in her apron and sobbed.

          The Fords had expected to collect a $10,000 reward, but Sheriff Craig placed them under arrest.  
          The local funeral home came with a wicker casket filled with ice to preserve  Jesse’s body. Over the next few days, he was paraded through the streets of St. Joseph on display.  His picture was posted in newspapers everywhere. On Sunday the ministers of town railed about the sins of robbery and killing.
          But in truth, under my walls, I  saw Jesse as a devoted family man. He was living under the alias name of Thomas Howard.  He had a  small son of 6, and daughter 4.  Zee was pregnant. He still flirted and teased her, making her blush. I often saw through my windows, this father riding with his son.  The little man sat astride the horse and had both hands on the mane.  His joyful laughter still rings through my doors and windows.
          Jesse paid $14 a month for the rent of my rooms.  With all the robberies he had committed, he saved not a dime in a sock or shoe within my walls.  When he died, destitute Zee lived in poverty.  She was forced to sell Jesse’s personal belongings including his beloved dog, Cur,  for $15. I can still recall him riding to the front of the house with  the puppy in his arms. Zee was obliged to show the murder scene for 10 cents a visit to sightseers. Two months later she was evicted by my owner who moved in herself and raised the price to 25 cents. I know not what became of Zee or the children.
          I was later moved to a Museum complex on the site of the Pony Express headquarters in St. Joe. How ironic the sign in front of the house reads, “The Place the Pony Express began and Jesse James ended.”
(Sign posted at the museum complex)  

Jesse W. James

Died April 3, 1882

Aged 34 years. 6 months. 28 days

Murdered by a traitor and coward whose name is not worthy to appear here.


©RaNae Watsabaugh   - Sun City Writers Workshop - Las Vegas, NV. 

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