Sunday, September 27, 2015



Perched high above in velvet lair,
With stars like diamonds in her hair.
Glimm'ring dew drops, in hallowed lace,
Shimmer and shine about her face.

Her raiment dusky, luminous gray;
Edged with azure in light of day.
Delicate jacquard embroidered gown.
Our hope, and sight, when sun is down

Ever in eons; evermore!
A sign of love in ageless yore.
Longing pursuit of fiery mate,
Locked within our earth's embrace.

Glory, surely, in thy mien,
From oceans blue and forests green.
Ever there is turned her gaze,
But thoughts of Brightness fill her days.

Blissful is earth in his rapture,
Vies ever her love to capture.
But by our earth, her heart's not won,
Mate of her soul's within the sun.

Ever, anon, love pirouettes,
Just out of reach, and soon begets,
Tumult of fury, jealous rage,
Blinding earth for age upon age.

A plan is hatched in tortured mind,
Result of temper less than kind.
Reckless is he whom love has scorned.
Prudent thought now fettered and shorn.

"Attack!" he cries, with sundering seas,
"Lasting darkness, for thine and thee!"
Blackened veil o'er her face then crept.
In ageless exile then, she wept.

Only after foul deed was done,
Did she her warlike armor don.
Raiment gray was replaced in flood,
With wrathful, churning, tempest blood.

Silent screaming her battle cry,
Enraging champions from on high.
Fiercely they lit about her face,
Demanding redress for disgrace.

Her darkness trumpets their advance.
About her crown, formations dance.
If her honor they can't restore,
Gauntlet is thrown. They march to war.


Slowly moves the war of sky
In time not meant for men.
Fleeting crashes the tumults cry,
As men's eyes perceive heaven.

A thousand years within a day the mighty warriors lean.
A thousand more outside our time, with weapons yet unseen.
A moment more--the earth resigns--in black night calls "Parlay!"
A treaty drawn. A wrong redressed. Her face has won the day.

From her countenance, grudgingly,
The shadow slides away.
Retreating sad, but lovingly,
Earth has lost the day.

When battle gear has served its need
Blood then fades to gray.
Earth weeps now in insatiable greed,
Though she agrees to stay.

In dusky raiment again she's donned
More brilliant than afore.
Love's sparkling light upon her mons,
From he whom she adores.

Hung high above, in velvet lair
With diamonds in her crown.
Naught else on earth or in the air
More lovely than her gown.

Wisps of dew create hallowed lace,
Whilst stars shine about her face.
Glorious lantern in night's sky,
Who's love for sun will never die.

Verily now her vict'ry won,
Glory restored, her liege the sun.
With inert cruelty she now taunts
Her scorned lover, who's dreams she haunts.

A thousand, thousand years he'll grieve,
And about the sun a tapestry weave,
With endless streams of love's lost tears,
In avarice dance throughout the years.

-- --

I wrote this is October 2004 for the lunar eclipse then. Originally posted on Seemed like a good time to re-post. Enjoy the eclipse tonight everyone!

Monday, September 21, 2015

secondhand souls

I get a kick out of Christopher Moore. I've read a bunch of his books since my little sister gave me a copy of Lamb a number of years ago. But I haven't read everything. And that fact just bit me in the ass while reading his latest: Secondhand Souls. Why? Because it's a sequel to an earlier novel that predates my interest in Moore's work, namely A Dirty Job.

So do you have to have read A Dirty Job in order to enjoy this one? No, would it be more enjoyable if you did? I don't know. see above Would I recommend reading the first one first? you're really not paying attention here, are you? listen, I can't do this by myself

Christopher Moore is delight to read. You can read me gush about him in my previous book reviews, which you'll find links to in the body of this review if you're interested, but I'll spare you that pleasure now. As far as this story goes, it's a little creepy--macabre even--but in a funny way.* Moore has taken an interesting view of death and its machinations, it's very workings, which he has absurdly assigned to men, as if the whole enterprise was outsourced to private contractors, to save tax money or something. Almost as if God said, hey I gave you the Garden of Eden and you screwed it up, now we got this whole death thing, why don't you just take care of that yourself.

Who comes up with stuff like that? Okay, there are probably plenty of crazed lunatics and under-medicated conspiracy-theorists that come up with crap like that every day, but what kind of maniac turns it into a novel?

That's right. My hero.

Oh, and before we go, does the book jacket with the creepy skeleton-faced girl glow-in-the-dark and creep you out even more when you shut off your bedside lamp the first night you read this? Of course it does.

Read this book.

Yes, yes, read the other one first. I thought we covered that

* Funny 'ha-ha' or funny 'strange?' Yeah, both.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

fifth gospel

I didn't read Ian Caldwell's last book, The Rule of Four, but it apparently did very well. I tried to look it up in my library, but they only have one copy, and it was out. Presumably because that reader wanted to do what I wanted to do after finding his new book on the shelf; read the first one. But I checked with the librarian and there was no information about this book being a follow up or sequel to The Rule of Four.

Caldwell's latest book is called The Fifth Gospel, and it has apparently taken him something like 10 years to write. I think his previous publisher may have even given up on him, but this effort seems like it may have been worth the wait. I enjoyed it.

Caldwell takes a close look at the relationship between the Catholic Church and the Greek Orthodox Church, from a very interesting perspective; through the eyes of an Eastern Catholic priest, a religion that bridges the gap between the two faiths, which split about 1000 years ago. Our Eastern (or Greek Catholic) protagonist is the son of a Eastern Catholic father--this faith allows their priests to marry--and is a priest himself. His brother, also a priest, broke from the family tradition and has become a Roman Catholic Priest.

The kicker is; they grew up and continue live in Vatican City, during the last years of John Paul II tenure as Pope.

At its core, this is a story of intrigue within Vatican City, and a mystery revolving around the split and current efforts to reunify the churches, ancient relics, and what it means to be Greek Orthodox vs. Roman Catholic, and how some of the higher ups in each of these traditions may still sting from the split a thousand years ago.

Its about family, brothers, marriage, love, church politics, friendship, faith, loyalty and betrayal, lost and redemption. And you know... murder.

This story swirls with activity, cloak and dagger, mystery about the churches and their histories, and is sprinkled with the fun and interest of what a day in the life of an inhabitant of one of the smallest countries in the world may be like. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Read this book.