Category Archives: publisher

Painting and proofs

Book News:

This week I’ve been working on the final proofs for A Dangerous Man and have just now sent them back to Cheyenne Publishing and Bristlecone Pine Press ready for publication date on 15 October. Nearly there, gosh. I’ve been thrilled today to see that the novel is included in the Lambda Literary October listings (Mystery & Thriller section), and that’s a seriously good place to be showcased, double gosh.

Meanwhile, Maloney’s Law gained a 5-star review at Goodreads, so many thanks for that, Nicci – so glad you enjoyed the story. I’m also very happy indeed that Tommy’s Blind Date is No 4 in the Amber Allure September Bestseller lists, and many thanks to those who’ve put it there. And I’m equally happy that I appear twice in Jessewave Reviews’ September Recommended Reads list, once with good old Tommy’s Blind Date and once with Tuluscan Six and the Time Circle – thank you, Wave!

Over at Vulpes Libris, you can find my review of Jane Green’s Girl Friday, which is a fabulous novel for the over-forties, and we so definitely need more of those. And the lovely Kirsty has also published a wonderful haiku-review of my Sunday Haiku collection – many thanks, Kirsty!

Here are this week’s meditation poems:

Meditation 438
Wine and women
are a heady brew;

they befuddle kings
and confound the things

that are true.
Who knew?

Meditation 439
Men become liars
and truth hides
in the deepest well

when the story we long for
is not the one
where we dwell.

Life News:

K has been in Dubai all this week and I have missed him LOADS. Thankfully he’s back tonight (hurrah!!) and is even now jetting his way towards Heathrow, so it will be totally lovely to have him back again. Goodness me but I was super-wimpy when he left at some ungodly hour on Monday morning – only barely managing not to grab him by the ankles and weep. Lordy, never say I’m not stylish, though what style it actually is must be anyone’s guess.

Anyway, it’s been strange rattling about in this old Victorian house all on my own for several days, but I have kept myself busy by doing bucketloads of DIY each evening when I got back from work – with the result that the spare room walls and ceiling are now painted with four coats, and the skirting board and door glossed with two. Oh and those proofs have kept me focused too, so that’s been good.

Work’s been horrendously busy as well, what with being the first week of term, and I simply haven’t had time to sit down, my dears. Not one second. I couldn’t even spare the time (or the energy) to go to Starbucks, and the wonderful Ruth had to bring me not one but two coffees where I sat pinned to my desk and panicking like a trouper. What a superstar that woman is. It’s the froth that keeps me going, you know …

Today, one of the vendors from the flat below has been in the house though, so I’ve not been entirely alone. I think we are studiously ignoring each other, which is no doubt best, and really I don’t have any desire at all to communicate with them again, to be honest. Yes, that probably means I’m a bad person but hey at least I’m honest about it. I’d feel happier about it if K was home as it’s a little unsettling, but as long as said vendor doesn’t try to talk to me I’ll be fine. Though if you do hear tell of a man being pinned to a landing wall with a screwdriver in a small Surrey town, I trust that all of you will vouch for my obviously impeccable character. Ho hum.

Anne Brooke

Dullness, Danger and Dubai

Book News:

Much to my delight, my latest gay short story, Brady’s Choice, has been accepted for publication by Amber Allure Press on 23 January, so it’s nice to have something to look forward to in the post-Christmas lull. Still much to look forward to this year however, as A Dangerous Man is due out on 15 October and can now even be preordered at Barnes & Noble, well gosh. You can find out more at Cheyenne Publishing, including a full blurb. I’m also happy that for a brief moment of time, Tommy’s Blind Date found itself at No 79 in the Amazon Gay Fiction charts so that was distinctly nice while it lasted.

Meanwhile, this week, I have just finished the dullest poetry book I have ever had the trauma of reading so thank goodness that’s over. I daren’t say who the author was to avoid their blushes but it was pretty bad. So bad it made my skin itch. I’m hoping my next poetry book will be better, but really that shouldn’t be too hard …

This week’s meditations are:

Meditation 436
Sometimes the god
of the mountain

is also the god
of the plain

and what you say
to the sky in secret

will come down
to destroy you again.

Meditation 437
If the bible
has taught me one thing
it’s this:

that lions and prophets
simply don’t mix.

The Sunday haiku is:

All week long the sky
lets fall its burden of rain,
soothing all my dreams.

Life News:

The redecoration of our spare room is now nearly done. We’ve tackled the last alcove and added two coats of paint to it today, plus I’ve put an undercoat on the skirting board there. We’re also slowly putting the rest of the spare room together again, including bookshelves and book cabinets but are reorganising it  to make best use of the space. Today, I’ve done another run to the council tip and also got rid of 4 more bags of books, and have this afternoon created another three book bags to go. It’s so cleansing, you know, and the good news is that the spare room that we’ve basically used as a dumping ground for 17 years now looks like a room someone might want to buy, hurrah. Ooh, and yesterday, we drove round looking at places we might like to live, and our favourites so far are Normandy, Fairlands and Wood Street Village (the latter two are in the outskirts of Guildford). We also liked Ash and Ash Vale/Ash Green, but it does depend where in those cases. We also looked at Tongham, but I think that’s third level on our list.

Church this morning was good too, especially as it seems like we haven’t paid God a call for ages (we haven’t), so nice to catch up. He’s having a quiet time before Christmas kicks in, if you’re asking. In addition, the poor vicar has apparently contracted pneumonia whilst on holiday (holidays: they’re not good for you, you know) but is being ministered to by the ladies of the parish (Gawd bless ’em) so every cloud does indeed have a silver lining. In our absence, the church also seems to have given birth to a music group, which K and I looked at with horror when we turned up as any whiff of evangelical happy-clappyness and we’ll be running to the door screaming. However, we needn’t have worried as it was clarinets only adding to the whole ambience of the hymns (very good indeed) and the singers sang a marvellous Latin chant during Communion. Bliss. Bring back Latin chants – they really do put the zing back into church-going. So the music group gets our vote, and I hope they keep that whole approach: it was great.

Alas however, next week I shall be sad and lonely as K is going to Dubai on business tomorrow and isn’t back till Thursday, so I will be Queen of this old Victorian house in truth. I can’t decide whether I want to be Miss Haversham or the Mad Woman in the Attic, but they are probably much of a muchness anyway. Thank goodness that Strictly Come Dancing is back on TV to keep me company or I shall indeed run mad. You have been warned …

Anne Brooke

Free books and Sunday Haikus

Book News:

Am blogging a little earlier than usual today as there’s a competition at Jessewave Reviews to win a FREE copy of Tuluscan Six and the Time Circle for today only, so hurry on over and comment on the post to enter – good luck!

I am also absolutely and incredibly delighted that I have a new poetry collection out! Yes, my collection of haikus for 2009, called simply Sunday Haiku, is now available as an eBook direct from the publisher, Seventh Window, and also at Amazon Kindle. Here’s the publisher’s blurb:

Since 2002 Anne Brooke has written a haiku or two every Sunday. This book contains her haikus written in the year 2009. These short poems are Anne Brooke’s meditations on life, publishing, nature and herself. They are simply brilliant and beautiful.

And I’m sure you’ll all agree that the cover is lovely. All this has been a complete surprise to me as the lovely Ken Harrison of Seventh Window Publications only contacted me this week as he’s been enjoying my Sunday haikus on Facebook, and so it’s been a rollercoaster ride since Monday! I gather he’s even managed to sell some copies, so thank you to those of you who’ve taken a chance and I do hope you enjoy the read. Thank you, Ken! Goodness, how refreshingly different the world of ebooks can be.

I also continue to be bemused but happy at the fact that The Delaneys and Me continues to float around the Amazon Kindle Gay Fiction charts and was apparently at one stage at the dizzy heights of No 16, well gosh. It’s fallen rather since then though, but I think the excitement might have been too much for the twins. Meanwhile, Martin and The Wolf recovered its dignity somewhat since its beating last week, with a 5-star Amazon review, so thank you, Amos, for that. Lucas sends love … fiercely, of course. And there’s been a nice round-up of my Untreed Reads fiction, including the latest offering, so thank you for those kind words also, Jay – though I’m not really sure that I move seamlessly anywhere in any part of my life, to be honest! I am from Essex after all, and we don’t do seamless.

Moving on to other people’s books, may I recommend this marvellous and very readable fantasy, which frankly is the best book I’ve read all year. Including my own, dammit. The good news is that I gather it’s shortly to be published by Untreed Reads in ebook version, so will be cheaper, and at that stage I intend to review it thoroughly for Vulpes Libris, so you’ll have to wait for that a while longer. But it’s definitely worth a read, and some.

Today, however, my review of Geoffrey Best’s Churchill, a Study in Greatness is at Vulpes instead, so you can admire The Great Man in a great and inspirational biography while you’re waiting. Never say I’m not good to you.

This week’s meditations:

Meditation 393
The fragility
of the lily

encased in the glory
of bronze

shines its delicacy
on your slow path.

Meditation 394
Metal and water
and the lily’s slow bloom:

strength made perfect
where delicacy dwells.

Meditation 395
If you possess
everything,

lions, bulls,
winged creatures

and palm trees,
then you’ll always need

a cart to put them in,
in bronze, of course.

Life News:

It’s been a very muddly and difficult week, work-wise, and really I seem to have been often at odds with the universe and the world around me. Does anyone else get weeks like that?? Or is it just me? I feel very much like I’m only just holding on to the sense of what’s going on in the office and how the heck to deal with it, and everything seems to have been a real effort. I suspect I’m simply overtired, and am not coping well and obsessing about the slightest thing – hmm, sounds of Lord H muttering that it doesn’t appear to be any different from usual really, but you know what I mean. I hope.

Mind you, all the angst and trauma has been rather mitigated by the success of last night’s work quiz at a local pub (which Ruth and I arranged) – though it has been causing some of the issues this week, not least because the pub’s phone has been out of order for a week so getting hold of them to sort things out has been … um … a challenge, though they are very nice. Anyway, it all went well in the end and our quizmaster was absolutely excellent, so everyone had a good time, phew. Including me.

Still, I was looking forward to a wonderful Clarins massage this afternoon at the House of Fraser Guildford to ease out the tensions of it all, but there’s been a mix-up, and they and I had different days down for my appointment, dammit. Not sure whose fault it is, but frankly I think they could have at least offered some sort of apology rather than sounding as if I was wasting their time by even existing, sigh. I’ve been a customer of theirs for seventeen years after all, and I think I’ve always been a very reliable and easy-to-deal-with one. It would be nice if I felt I was getting something back. Maybe I should go elsewhere? So if anyone knows another Clarins treatments provider in the Surrey area, please do let me know! I’m open to offers (as it were).

Anne Brooke
The Prayer Seeker’s Journal

Independence Day news!

First of all, a very happy Independence Day to all US readers, and anyone else who’s celebrating today too – I hope you all have a wonderful day, and I’ve certainly got some treats in store for you! As they say.

My erotic short story, The Boilerman and The Bride, is published today at Amber Heat Press, and you can also read extracts at both those links. Enjoy!

I also have a wide variety of sale opportunities for you: Dancing with Lions is in the Amazon Kindle sale on a limited basis, so now’s a very good time to buy this one. In addition, all books from Untreed Reads, including my own, are in the Coffee Time Romance sale this weekend ONLY. You can also get 30% discount for this weekend directly from Untreed Reads, plus if you use the code Untreed30 you can get 30% discount from All Romance eBooks. Neither does the good news stop there: the sale continues over at Smashwords where you need to use the coupon code SWS25. Happy shopping!

I’m also very happy to announce that I have a brand-new cover and indeed a brand-new webpage for upcoming comic short story, Rosie By Name. This is to be published by Bluewood Publishing at a date to be decided, but ain’t that cover marvellous. I love it! And it’s perfect for my heroine.

In terms of ratings and reviews, The Delaneys and Me found itself briefly but proudly at No 62 in the Amazon Kindle Gay Fiction chart, and The Secret Thoughts of Leaves reached the dizzy heights of No 30 in the Amazon Kindle Surrealism charts for a while.

Martin and The Wolf received a very nice review from Literary Nymph Reviews and even managed to get to No 4 in the Amber Allure June bestseller lists – well, gosh, I’ve never been that high in those listings before, so thank you to everyone who’s been buying the book and I really hope you enjoy it.

I’ve also been delighted that (in some way) my “poor relation” book, The Hit List, gained a really thorough and totally lovely 5-star review at Goodreads – many thanks indeed for that, Holly! I particularly enjoyed this quote from the review: “Jamie is the most wonderful character. I love him to death. He can be mean and hurtful and generous and inarticulate and dreamy. I want to shake him when he’s being exasperating and hug him because he’s got sad, difficult times ahead. I wish books didn’t have to end. This isn’t really a love story. And I would have liked to know more of the secondary characters. But I’m putting Anne Brooke on my list of favorite authors.” Gosh, and thank you again!

Not to be outdone, The Delaneys and Me received a 5-Angel review at Fallen Angel Reviews, and (keeping the angel theme – aha!), Angels and Airheads received two 4-star reviews at Goodreads, which you can read here and here – many thanks to Serena and Andy for both those.

And my Hot Fiction Tip for July can now be found at Queer Magazine Online – don’t let the dreadful title and cover put you off, as it’s a fascinating, humane and very deep read!

Finally, here’s this week’s poetry:

Meditation 378
Sometimes all you can do
when the storm sweeps over

is cling to the altar
of God and wait

for the mercy of men.

Meditation 379
On his deathbed
he’s not concerned

with the hereafter
but with the mercies

and vengeances
he leaves behind:

an inheritance
of shadows.

Meditation 380
A quiet death
brings its own beauty
to the earth:

stars, moon
and silence.

This week’s haiku:

A sudden rainfall
washes clean the parched garden:
air-bright, glittering.

Anne Brooke
The Prayer Seeker’s Journal

Dangerous Men and Executioners

There. That’s a title to conjure with, on oh so many levels. Never say I don’t put some kind of effort into this writing lark, ho ho. Anyway, here’s this week’s news so far – my first few days of being 46, you know.

Book News:

I’m utterly thrilled with this new cover for A Dangerous Man which has been created by Scot D. Ryersson – what a genius. It’s incredible and I really love it. Thank you, Scot. I’m very fond of the original one too, of course, but this seems to be perfectly suited for the times now and, hey, it’s always good to have choices. I love it.

In terms of recent reviews, I’m pleased that literary short, Dancing with Lions, has gained a very enthusiastic 5-star review at Goodreads – many thanks for that, Rick. And it’s a particular pleasure as it’s this story’s first review. I was starting to think nobody had much time for a Biblical historical and feminist perspective on King David, so nice to know I was wrong, tee hee. Let the women of the Bible loose is what I say – there’s much modern value in them.

I’m also happy that the lovely Stephanie Watson has given The Secret Thoughts of Leaves a 4-star review, and also given a 5-star review to The Girl in the Painting – gosh, thanks, Stephanie! You read at a rate even faster than mine – do you not allow time to breathe?!…

Finally, in the reviews section, Martin and The Wolf and Angels and Airheads both received a very kind mention at Tam’s Reads – thank you, Tam! Though I do think that your admission that you appear to be on an “Anne Brooke diet” in terms of reading is scary for you and I believe I know a doctor who can help … Lord H at least has every sympathy for your predicament.

Keeping to the subject of reviews, my take on Malcolm Pryce’s Last Tango in Aberystwyth can be found at Vulpes Libris today. It’s the first in my Happy Reads series of reviews for the Book Foxes, and isn’t really an auspicious start, I fear. I’m hoping for better things.

In terms of current works, I’ve sent the final edits for Tuluscan Six and the Time Circle back to Amber Allure Press, and that’s due out on 18 July. And, in a truly miraculous feat, I have forced myself back into the game (steady, people, steady …) in respect of actually writing more of The Executioner’s Cane. A bit of a shocker that, as I’d all but forgotten what the hell was going on and what the characters were like. Hmm, still don’t know really. It took a while to get into it again this morning (lots of sighing, playing on the computer, mad displacement activity and groaning etc etc, but then again that is usual for me …) but yes I’ve done 1000 words. Phew. Ye gods and little fishes, Lord knows what the scribe thinks he’s up to now but I suppose it must be something. Probably another month before I hit the dang thing again then at this rate. Hey ho.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, Martin and The Wolf is now available at Amazon Kindle, and there’s still time to win a free copy (hurrah!) at the Dancing Dove competition – it ends on 25 June (tomorrow) so best to rush!

I’m also delighted to say that I’ve joined the GLBT Author and Reader Yahoo Group, which looks a great place to be. So if you read or write GLBT fiction, do pop along for a visit. I’m especially pleased with my fun new Fiction Photo Album, which brings together all my gay fiction in one place. Not sure if you can see that unless you join as Yahoo in many respects remains a mystery to me but, believe me, it’s worth the 10 seconds it will take to apply for membership, honest! And you get to meet lots of really lovely people who are far, far less scary than me, so what are you waiting for?…

Life News:

I have time for a life?? Well, goodness me, who’d have thought it. I must squeeze it in somehow (as it were) between crazed book work. Anyway, my birthday (I’m 46 now, don’t you know – have I mentioned that already?) was fab-u-lous, in all respects, and I received some lovely presents from Lord H, and some totally strange presents from Mother. As usual. Bless. Still, I admit that though, at first, I laughed at her floral open-toed slippers gift (Mother has always bought presents for the lovely, fluffy, girly daughter she really wanted but, sadly, didn’t get …), now in this heat I can’t take them off. Even to go outside. I am softening towards them and wearing them even as I’m typing this. Perhaps in the end, Mother will indeed get the daughter of her dreams, and Lord H will hurtle off into the sunset wondering where the off-kilter, kick-ass woman that he married went to … Um, here’s hoping not, please God! On all counts. Anyway, one of Lord H’s gifts was a wonderful summery, dark blue dressing gown that is just what I wanted, as all my dressing gowns – Lordy, is that sad that I have several?? – are way, way too wintery. I am wearing it all the time too – with the slippers. Never say I am not stylish.

And it was a good job I had such a fabulous time on Monday, as Wednesday was UTTER crap, I must say. Depression City all round – exhaustion, heat, PMT big-time all came together to create the World’s Weepiest Wife all day, dammit and big groan. It was soooo bad that I took 2 St John’s Wort pills, 2 calming pills, a herbal sad person’s pill and some Rescue Remedy spray. Still didn’t work but at least I rattled a lot, so people could tell I was coming and still have time to escape. Weird how today all that crap has gone and I feel fine again. I am indeed a slave to my hormones, sigh. Thank God that’s over for another month.

All of which is probably something similar to what those astonishing and surely exhausted Wimbledon players must be feeling after yesterday’s game. Ye gods, but it’s made tennis interesting again – and you must read the article in the link as it’s laugh-out-loud good, even if you’re not a tennis fan. Which I’m not any more, but both Lord H and I wonder if the match will ever end as it enters its third day. Gosh! Don’t they have homes to go to, and how do those two men keep standing at all? Though let’s not go into the mysteries of how the umpire managed to go so many hours without a courtesy break … scary biscuits indeed.

Here are a couple of meditation poems to keep us all going:

Meditation 371
The ultimately
unfortunate soldier
whose spear has a shaft
as thick as the bar
on a weaver’s loom

probably didn’t reckon
on such a brief mention
in scripture
or on meeting his fate
quite so terribly soon.

Meditation 372
After the battle
comes the poetry

full of glory
and song

but I think
skipping the massacre

and going straight
to the music

wouldn’t entirely
be wrong.

Anne Brooke
The Prayer Seeker’s Journal

Publishing and some personal thoughts

What a busy and sometimes vastly difficult week it’s been. Really, I’m astonished we’ve got to the end of it and are still standing. Just. Not that it’s been all bad news as it hasn’t, as there’s been lots of nice future publication activity, which has acted as a bit of a boost.

I’ve received and completed the contract for Rosie by Name from Bluewood Publishing and hope to post that back to them tomorrow, although I’ve also sent a copy by email. And I have a lovely new publication date for the new edition of A Dangerous Man from Cheyenne Publishing – it will be 15 October 2010, so it’s great to have something to look forward to after the inevitable exhaustion of the University’s Freshers’ Week.

At a less distant perspective, I’ve sent back the galley proofs of Martin and The Wolf, which now has a page at Amber Allure Press (NB: that page contains erotic content so be warned!). It will be published on Sunday 13 June, so not long to go now, hurrah.

And there’s a new interview with me for your delectation at Shae Connor’s Journal – thanks so much to Shae for allowing me to take over her journal for a day. It’s much appreciated.

However, on the slightly minus side, I’ve been giving some thought to my novel-writing vocation (I hesitate to say career!) over the last few weeks on and off, and I’ve decided that when I’ve finished The Executioner’s Cane, then I won’t be writing any more novels for the foreseeable future. When I started writing novels in the year 2000, I gave myself ten years to make some kind of go of it and, in all honesty, that hasn’t worked, and is causing me on the whole more grief than joy. So I think it’s time to call it a day, as they say, and move on. In any case, finishing Executioner will without doubt take me well into 2011 so I’ve given it my best shot. Yes, I’m sad to have to take this decision, but not taking it will I fear be even more detrimental to my mental/emotional health so I’d be stupid to do anything else.

On the other hand, that doesn’t mean I won’t be continuing writing the short stories and, perhaps, the odd novella or two. The short story career (and there, I do dare say that word, though with tongue very much in cheek of course!) has been doing surprisingly well recently, particularly with my new gay and literary fiction publishers (special thanks for this to Amber AllureTorquere Press and Untreed Reads), and bringing in more royalties than anything else put together, so I think it’s best to concentrate on that. Plus it’s more fun. In terms of novellas, I’d like to finish The Prayer Seeker’s Journal at about 40,000 words or so, and then I’ve got an idea about a gay romance novella, but I won’t start that until the last novel is done. Onward and sideways for sanity then, as they say …

Talking of health matters, which we are sort of, I’m disappointed to note that my second CA125 blood test results weren’t great, though almost identical to the first one – so, hell, at least I’m consistent! And the scan I had at the same time wasn’t perfect either, though that’s probably my usual and there’s nothing horrible to worry about there. Which I hope is true on all counts, but I’m seeing the specialist on Wednesday, so I’ll wait to hear what she has to say. Ho hum. Thank you hugely to all the people who’ve sent very kind messages – I’m very grateful indeed. While I’m at the hospital, I think I’m also going to ask her if I can change my current HRT doses in some way – I haven’t really been very happy at all over the last couple of months, and have been positively weepy on many occasions and furiously angry on others, though I think I’ve kept that out of the public domain on the whole (poor, poor Lord H – what a lot he’s had to put up with since March or so, and how much of a Superhero he really is!!). We think it might be the hormones, sigh. But, honestly, I really really can’t bear a summer of this as I have no clue at all as to how I’m going to feel from one moment to the next or even how I’m going to act. God preserve Surrey! Is it premenopausal, I wonder??

Which brings me (though I trust the link is only coincidental) somehow back to the Cumbria Question. Not on the matter of what happened this time, but on the matter of what’s happening now. I would like to nail my colours to the proverbial mast and say that if I live in a society where the press can without any qualms at all interview a 9-year-old boy about his reactions to the killings he witnessed, then we are in all honesty no longer living in either a civilised society or a humane one. The press deserve a hefty fine for this kind of child abuse, and the parents a hefty warning. God preserve us all indeed. Enough said. As I fear that in this age of celebrity-at-any-price and news-at-any-price, then people will do anything and my views are meaningless.

Anyway, here’s some poetry to calm us all down:

Meditation 368
There will always be ways
of putting your point across

but what matters most
is the listening.

This week’s haiku, because getting up yesterday morning was just sooo tricky! –

Sunlight pierces air,
calls me to the crystal day.
Reluctant riser.

Anne Brooke
The Prayer Seeker’s Journal

Girls, Doves and Angels

I’m happy to say that my literary lesbian short story, The Girl in the Painting is currently standing at No 71 in the Amazon Kindle Lesbian romance charts and is also, according to my publisher Untreed Reads, selling strangely well. So, it looks like quiet, literary lesbian fiction is the thing to read now – you heard it here first! Note to self – must write more of same in that case …

The Bones of Summer was also briefly holding its own (as it were) at No 53 in the Amazon Kindle Gay & Lesbian fiction charts but is now, alas, back into the shadows once more. Nice to have the glitter while it lasted, however.

Story acceptances this week have included my comic short story, Rosie by Name, by Bluewood Publishing, and also a comic SF story, Creative Accountancy for Beginners, again by Untreed Reads, so a big thank you to both publishers for that.

You can also find an interview with me at the Dancing Dove Journal, so I hope you enjoy that – I certainly enjoyed answering the questions, and thanks to Ralph for giving me “air-time”. I’ve also finished the edits for gay romance short story, Angels and Airheads, and have sent those back to Torquere Press. And my Hot Fiction Tip for June at Queer Magazine Online can be found here – it’s a totally strange title but a fabulous read.

Here are this week’s earlier meditations, some of which are strangely and sadly apt:

Meditation 365
Out of a time
of destruction and rage

a small heaven
of quiet words:

on this day
nobody dies.

Meditation 366
After battle
there is time

for kindness
but it’s a spare sort

when the loyalty of cripples
is called to account.

Meditation 367
At eighty years old
he can no longer taste

or see, or hear
the voice of singers

but still has chutzpah enough
to sweet-talk a king.

Finally, in the midst of this, we must absolutely spare many of our thoughts for the Cumbrian gun tragedy which took place yesterday and which left many dead and more injured. Nothing much I can say at all, except that violence is all around and within us, and my heart goes out to the victims, the perpetrator and all their families and friends. We live in tragic and frightening times, I fear.

Anne Brooke
The Prayer Seeker’s Journal