I hope you will…You can show your love by clicking on the heart to “like” the poem, or to leave a comment, you’ll need to create an account and log in. I offer my heartfelt thanks in advance if you choose one of these options. ❤️
Thank you so much to Dagmara K. and her team for this wonderful opportunity of becoming a part of Spillwords Press.
Perhaps he was a Western Screech Owl that I heard outside our bedroom window in the early darkness before the sun fashioned its glorious arrival. I cannot say with conviction, but it is certain he proclaimed his presence with his high-pitched toots.
And what I’d like to know…
was he aware that just before he sang his series of notes our alarm would, in a matter of minutes, sound off in its circle’s ringtone?
And did he realize at this time when most homes on the street have not awakened, we make our preferred dark roast from old faithful Mr. Coffee, then sit together in harmony for soft conversation?
That this routine, though understated for some, would not be the same,
would not provide the equivalent comforting experience if one of us was not present?
Have you ever sensed the tingling of a feeling arriving without a label? It stirs through your reflections, your layers, and you find yourself walking around in a daze where reality offers no place of comfort. So, the sun sets for the moon, but what does this clarify? One thing is certain – within the constellations, among the celestial stars, this emotion finds balance, graciously treasuring the safety it has stumbled upon.
I am thrilled that my book, More than Coffee, released in fall of 2021, is still receiving beautiful reviews. Mark Bierman wrote a fabulous review in December as we headed into the holiday season. So, I’m delighted to shareas we move forward in this new yearfull of possibilities. But before I do, if you haven’t met Mark and experienced his compelling story telling and fantastic sense of humor, you haven’t been fully living! His book, Vanished, is a riveting novel, and here is the link to my review: https://baydreamerwrites.com/2022/04/18/book-review-vanished/.You can also find Mark at his blog: https://markbierman.wordpress.com/. And now I will share his commentary that made me do yet another happy dance…
It’s pretty green outside these days, every flake of the white stuff has melted back into H20. But no matter what Nature’s decided, we’ve been coasting into the Holiday Spirit here.
The tree’s up, it’s branches adorned with bulbs and baubles for the exclusive swatting pleasure of our two felines. Outside, soft white lights are strung across the lilac bush and a spotlight highlights the Nativity.
But I’m not here to discuss Christmas, well, unless you’re looking for the perfect gift for that book lover.
So, without further ado, let’s raise a glass and toast a great read!
What’s it about?
From the early woes of childhood and teen years, this collection of stories and poems paints a picture of young dreams and fears. But as adulthood sets in, these dreams and fears change. More than Coffee touches on love and loss, nature and endurance, marriage, and parenting. In these memories, humor diffuses fear and taking risks proves to be a powerful method in boosting self-confidence. Through it all, whether in the wilderness near a sparkling lake or in the comfort of home, there’s nothing like a good cup of coffee. A poignant and reflective collection of verse and prose that is best enjoyed sipping your favorite coffee roast.
The title gets it right. This book is about far more than coffee, more than a journal; it’s a love letter to Life. An exquisite and heartfelt testament to a life well lived.
Every anecdote and poem is a window to a different season that is relatable to anyone who’s been on this journey for more than a decade. The stories and poems are thoughtfully crafted and wonderfully penned. They complement each other nicely and capture the intense emotions of those moments and milestones.
I smiled at the tales about her bouts with arachnophobia, but not because I’d wish that on anyone. It reminds me of my own, ‘tour of duty’ in the defense against spiders when I had to “save” my youngest daughter. Then again, I feel the same way about snakes.
I highly recommend this book for those who savor each day!
Meet Lauren and grab your copy in time for Christmas!(or an upcoming birthday or Mother’s Day!)
Lauren writes poetry, memoir, and fiction short stories who lives in California with her husband of thirty-four years and their chocolate lab; they have two grown children. She has authored two collections of poetry: New Day, New Dreams (2013) and Finding a Balance (2015). Her latest book, More than Coffee: Memories in Verse and Prose was published in 2021. And in 2022, she contributed four poems to the anthology: Poetry Treasures 2: Relationships. Lauren writes about family, experiencing loss, finding joy in the smallest things, and nature from her many backpacking and camping adventures.
Parallel to her passion for writing is her love for reading. Whether it is a gripping thriller or a heartwarming romance, she enjoys exploring different worlds and meeting diverse characters, drawing similarities to reality that translate into her own writing. Her writing projects are sometimes serious – drawn from painful subjects and raw emotions – or they spotlight her silly side – pulled from humorous moments captured in photographs.
Lauren is inspired to write from her love of nature and the marvelous wild world that surrounds her: the smell of the woods, the sound of a babbling brook, and the chorus of birds singing. Recent backpacking trips with her husband along the California coast and Sierra Nevada mountains have stirred up thoughts to pen about love, lost friendship, family, and the possibility that anything can happen. Hikes along the Paper Mill Creek remind her that life is fragile. From trout hatchlings to swallowtail butterflies, Lauren marvels at how the world is interconnected and that every living thing matters. She hopes her readers will find a little nugget of delight, comfort, or understanding in her poetry and stories – some detail that resonates with them beyond her words.
As this year nears the end, I thought sharing this poem again (though slightly revised) would be timely as we slowly glide into a new beginning…
I view life like a package wrapped in celebratory paper. The matching ribbons fascinate in their delicate, entwined camaraderie, so fingers gently unravel, heartbeat increases from excitement of what will be found. We lift the lid, peek inside, our inner child moves to the forefront of our minds.
But we must remember that unlike recyclable paper, the gift of life cannot be tossed back into the universe. There is no spare awaiting on the sidelines, and we should be mindful that the contents require tenderness with a set of instructions solely for the recipient, each one of us individually, as visible as a red rose in a garden of white daisies…
because we are beautifully unique.
Then once we have absorbed the guidelines, following them with gratitude and tenacity, the purpose of our gift will reveal itself as naturally as moonlight on a night darker than the deepest sea.
It’s that time again when most of us wonder where the past year went and how fast it zipped by. In just a few weeks, we’ll be drinking champagne and kissing at midnight, ringing in a new year, 2023. Decades ago, these numbers sounded straight out of The Jetson’s! But before the bubbly and the kiss comes Christmas, a Christian holiday for those of you who celebrate the birth of Jesus. But another jolly soul arrives, too, Santa, so you know what we need to do…shop!!
And if you’re looking for a gift, specifically, a lovely book that can be read in one sitting or savored by reading one poem or story at a time, look no further, my book, More than Coffee, may just be the perfect choice!
To give you a little peek inside the pages, here are some wonderful reviews:
This is a delightful collection of prose and poetry reflecting on a life tinged with sadness but also a great deal of love and humour. The author celebrates moments from her early life and marriage of over thirty years with stories that will entertain and also bring the reader’s own experiences to mind.
Sometimes it is the simplest things that evoke the warmest memories, such as a silver cutlery set, a toy frog called Sam, a yellowed kitchen chopper and the first time baking a traditional family birthday cake.
We are invited to concerts as a teenager overcomes self-doubt to solo in front of an audience of 2000 and fulfil a dream inspired by her idol Barbra Streisand. There are moments with spiders that might have you looking around your immediate surroundings, but you will also find yourself in some wonderful wilderness areas offering moments of reflection and a dip in a mountain pool.
Love is a central theme beginning with her mother and father’s love story that endured for nearly 70 years having begun in WWII with all its uncertainty and lengthy periods apart, and the author’s own fateful meeting with her husband, involving a kitchen appliance!
The loss of parents, even after a long and wonderful life, leaves a hole in our hearts. Their stories and poetry dedicated to them in this collection are heart-warming and reinforce the extent of their loving influence on the generations that followed.
The final part of the collection reflects on the changes that come when children leave the nest, and whilst this is obviously a time of sadness, there is also pride and delight as new lives are forged with future adventures to look forward to.
I enjoyed all the stories and poems in the collection and I am hard pushed to pick just one favourite but this one touched my heart.
I stare at this page, milk white as the blanketed ground in winter’s staging where are the syllables?
I fear they have flown to faraway places, across desert dunes and boundless oceans and might not return so that I may tell him (again) how irreplaceable he is.
Instead, I’ll touch his lips with mine and steady myself in the arms of a man who is satisfied with my simple existence.
I can highly recommend this collection to read in one sitting or to dip into when you are in need of gentle and uplifting moments.
I loved every word in this book. Scott’s style and loving expression took me into the heart of life and to what truly matters. Her thoughts of Wil, her father-in-law, are compassionate and delightful in equal measure. Scott’s love for her family and the life she and Matt have built for their children shine through. Belonging and Riding With The Wind are two of my favourite poems.
More Than Coffee is a delight from start to finish and I highly recommend it to anyone who needs a dip into the magic of life.
This lovely book is a mix of a memoir about the author/poet’s life with some beautiful freestyle poems included after each prose section to enhance the emotion and moments shared. The memoirs are relatable and cover delightful memories of family brought back through inherited items and stories shared by family members as well as the author’s own life experiences including achievements, romance, parental love, and overcoming fears. The author’s personality and humour comes through strongly in her writing and poetry, as well as her joy and pleasure in the simple things in life.
My favourite poem in this collection and the one that summarised for me the spirit and essence of this book is Fulfilled.
Let me drink from the gaze in your eyes Eyes that have me wildly mesmerized Mesmerized under their vivid piercing spell Spell which only you many cast over me Me, with a heart madly in love Love, a whirlwind of euphoric emotions so true True in not only our hearts, but in our minds Minds, fully aware of their endless thoughts Thoughts so amorous of us entwined
Now, if after reading these beautiful reviews, you find your interest is piqued, simply click on the Amazon link above, and Magic! Your copy (or copies) will be on its way! 🙂
So, I will end by saying that through the poems and stories in my book, I hope to inspire you to see the beauty around, to feel gratitude, to face challenges with verve, and to trek through that fear knowing you will find the light. I invite you to pour a cup of your favorite roast, or your preferred beverage, sink into your favorite chair, and enjoy the the rich taste while turning the pages.My wish is that you’ll find even a little nugget that resonates.
Thank you for reading, and I offer my utmost appreciation to you who have enjoyed my memories, and to those of you who have written reviews.
HAPPY HOLIDAYS, MERRY CHRISTMAS, AND HAPPY READING! ❤️🎄❤️
It’s been a while since I’ve posted book reviews, so I thought it was about time to share three wonderful books I have recently enjoyed…
Distant Flickers: Stories of Identity & Loss is an excellent anthology of engaging short stories from eight accomplished authors that I finished in one evening. The stories are inspired from a personal event and touch on identity and loss in their own unique way and setting, and all are well written with characters who seem as real as you and me. It is easy to get lost in their struggles, ascertaining how they will cope and heal. Each character is found at a crossroads where a life-changing decision is vital. Following each piece is a biography of the author which provides a little insight into the inspiration for writing the story. I found this to be very interesting.
This entire collection is five-star worthy, but a few stories that stand out are “Where Secrets Go to Hide” by Keith Madsen. The style in which Keith writes about a young boy who begins to collect secrets just like his sister collects baseball cards is filled with clever nuances of humor and suspense. Collecting secrets, doesn’t that grab you already? “Two Boys” by Carol LaHines tells of a mother’s loss, an emotional and moving tale, and an incomprehensible event that made my heart ache, being a mother myself. “Diary Omissions: The House on Edgewood Road” by Elizabeth Gauffreau is tenderly written about a mother who is unhappy in her role in life, and how her behavior affects her husband and two children.
I recommend this anthology to anyone who enjoys a little drama, loves short stories that are character-driven and based on real-life events.
Avian Friends: Encouraging Poems Inspired by Backyard Birdsby Yvette Priorwas inspired by the author’s family planting several trees in their backyard for the purpose of creating shade and privacy. What they didn’t expect was the arrival of a whole host of feathered friends that would entertain. Yvette began observing the birds, their behavior, sounds, and daily activities, jotting down her thoughts along the way.
This collection is divided into five sections, and following each poem, the author includes her inspiration behind her poetic words…delivering personal reflections of relating her aviary findings to the lives of human emotions and well-being. Yvette inserts tidbits of wisdom for living a balanced life. These snippets into Yvette’s mind are as entertaining and evocative as her poetry.
Some of my favorite poems are “What Matters” which speaks about materialism and how some people use possessions as their barometer for success. “Summer Sun” is a cute poem that tells us it is quite okay to simply be. In these times of living busy lives, carving out some quiet time for relaxation is a healthy choice for finding that balance. “Fall Crunch” paints a beautiful image of a new autumnal season, as well as showing the simple beauty of a cardinal. I recommend this lovely book to not only bird lovers, but to those who would enjoy grasping the deeper meaning behind Yvette’s poems.