Posted in God's blessing, life of riches and honor, words of thoughts and spirit

Today I sense a Transformation by the renewal of the mind

renewal of mindToday I sense a Transformation by the renewal of the mind.
On this morning when sleep is freshly cast aside with reluctance
because of the lingering sweetness of an undisturbed rest,
I hear a light whisper outside my window
and I rise and greet the call which is even sweeter, from love.
A light switch turns gently on by nature from beyond
with a rush of refreshing cool breeze that only a dawn can bring.
How do I define you, my dawn?
I just look at the demarcation line you make between the light and the darkness.
I always associate you with light and love.
Together you bring fresh hope for life.
For too long I have heard oppressed stories of gloom and depressed forecast of doom.
Today I decide to turn way from false prophets and soothsayers.
I am resolute to start my day with you of light and love.
My mind is transformed by your evidences that present themselves
in grandeur and majesty from on high,
yes, from great beyond.

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Posted in photography, words of thoughts and spirit

experimental agenda in pictures

autumn and cloud Experimentals


I took these pictures in November two years ago. It was a rather hot and dry autumn and the leaves and sky were quite stunning. I have experimented with them using a computer program. The results are unusual but I still prefer the original which I post below.


Perhaps I am a conservative where certain subjective things are concerned. I like the original “unplugged” untouched-up versions in photos, music, poems, paintings, stories, impressions, thought and feeling of love and being loved.

Photos are mostly subjective. I know someone will ask, “Really?” Well, just ask any photographer or traveler. No matter how hard I try to be objective when taking a snap at something, when I look at the photo outcome later I can still see a personal preference even for a moment. In this case it becomes rather obvious when I edit them.

Posted in God's creatures, photography, travel, words of thoughts and spirit

a peek at the octopus’s garden

Peek at an underwater space.
peek octopuspeek octopus ringo
I took these pictures quite sometime ago when I visited Monterey Bay Aquarium. I have forgotten all about the bright red octopus which disappointed many by persisting to hide in its underwater garden/cave. There is nothing much to see except a tentacle with suckers. The aquarium describes it to be “an amazing creature—brainy and beautiful…In our exhibit, you may have to look closely to find the octopus, as these animals can change their skin color to blend in with the rocks around them, and even this species, the largest octopus in the world, can squeeze itself into tiny, out-of-the-way spaces.” So here is just a peek of the amazing creature.

In a way this octopus is like human. Don’t we all choose to allow a mere peek in many aspects of our life? I am not talking about the virtual world. Even in real life we keep to our personal space. Why is it that the more civilized we are the more exclusive and distant we strive to become? I read that the Giant Pacific octopus spends most of its life alone. While it chooses to be a hermit, it can learn to open jars, play with toys, and interact with its handlers. It can mimic other octopuses. It is a master of disguise. Near the end of her three years’ life the female will find a once in her lifetime mate and reproduces. Here is a touching description of the heroic sacrificial mother.

“The mother octopus lives in the cave for up to seven months as the curtain of eggs develops, fanning the eggs with her arms or contracting her body to shoot streams of oxygen- and nutrient-rich water over them. She doesn’t eat during this time and usually dies shortly after the young hatch.” (Monterey Bay Aquarium)

Given a last line I would add that she is probably more capable of true love than many.

Posted in photography, power of words, words of thoughts and spirit

their ember glows on…

a glow that glimmersA Glow that still glimmers.

I am fascinated with letter writing. I mean the kind of letters that really matters, both to the writer and the recipient. Not so long ago we all wrote letters. We wrote letters of real words, often with genuine feelings and thoughts. Crossing a rather long causeway one evening I took this picture. Although it was a bit shaky I appreciate the capture for a moment in time which passed and never returned. Letters often depict a moment in time like a picture. Looking through my former drafts for this blog I found the following lyrics written by a legendary poet, songwriter and artist, Leonard Cohen who passed away in 2016 November.  For those who do not know him and are interested in knowing what he was known for during the nearly 50 years of his musical career, “Unmatched in his creativity, insight and crippling candor, Leonard Cohen was a true visionary whose voice will be sorely missed,” said his manager.

Here is how Leonard Cohen writes (and sings) about letter writing and reading. Don’t we all feel the same as the letters writer feels? There is always a silent secret glow in our heart when we write with a passion. I know of someone who used to write one letter a day to his beloved for three and half years in addition to making rather expensive transatlantic phone calls (in those days) until she was accustomed to hearing from him like from a voice inside her and finally told him to marry her. Does the glowing ember of letters die off eventually? I have no answer. Perhaps if the two should meet when they have become really very old they will tell each other. Leonard once had a love in 1960s and when she approached death in July 2016 at 81 he wrote a touching letter to her. He too died shortly after. He was 82.

The Letters by Leonard Cohen

He: You never liked to get
The letters that I sent.
But now you’ve got the gist
Of what my letters meant.
You’re reading them again,
The ones you didn’t burn.
You press them to your lips,
My pages of concern.

I said there’d been a flood.
I said there’s nothing left.
I hoped that you would come.
I gave you my address.

She: Your story was so long,
The plot was so intense,
It took you years to cross
The lines of self-defense.
The wounded forms appear:
The loss, the full extent;
And simple kindness here,
The solitude of strength.

He and she: You walk into my room.
You stand there at my desk,
Begin your letter to
The one who’s coming next.

From wikipedia about ember:
An ember is a glowing, hot coal made of greatly heated wood, coal, or other carbon-based material that remain after, or sometimes precede, a fire. Embers…radiate a substantial amount of heat long after the fire has been extinguished…

Posted in photography, thoughts, words of thoughts and spirit

Become rounded in jazz reminiscence

Become Rounded at a jazz restaurant. rounded at club3333 blue room Some years ago I casually became accustomed to jazz recordings performed by several female artists whose albums happened to be available in a tiny sleepy town. It started one day when someone real close got hold of one lone jazz album, Cool Edinburgh jazz vocalist Niki King’s Azure. After listening to her lithe and soulful voice, I decided to ransack a rather rare music store hidden in a cool back lane that sold only high fidelity expensive recordings to audiophiles. I managed to get a few jazz albums which I treated like rare gems in those days. I got to listen to Norah Jones’ Feels like Home. My friend and I then listened to Diana Krall’s The Look of Love…No, we did not have high-end audio playback system. But we really enjoyed listening despite our humbler audio player.

I never thought much of the meanings of the lyrics and did not bother to look them up. Neither did my friend bother. To round up today’s reminiscence of those jazzy and somewhat crazy days, I dig these out from the internet source. Well, here are some lyrics that seem well rounded and well presented of the lazy, lean, cool and casual mood and tone of those days.

Drifting, dreaming
In an azure mood
Stardust gleaming
Through my solitude

Here in my seclusion
You’re a blue illusion
While I’m in this azure interlude
I’m not wanted
I’m so all alone

(Ella Fitzgerald – Azure Lyrics)

Sunrise
Looks like morning in your eyes
But the clocks held 9: 15 for hours
Sunrise Sunrise
Couldn’t tempt us if it tried

Cuz the afternoon’s already come and gone
And I said

oooo, oooo, oooo
To you
Surprise
Surprise
Couldn’t find it in your eyes
But I’m sure it’s written all over my face

(Norah Jones – Sunrise Lyrics)

What am I to you
Tell me darling true,
To me you are the sea
Vast as you can be
and deep the shade of blue

When you’re feeling low
Oh to whom else do you do
see I cry if you hurt
I’d give you my last shirt
because I love you so

(Norah Jones – What Am I To You? Lyrics)

The look of love
Is in your eyes.
A look your smile
Can’t disguise.
The look of love,
It’s saying so much more than
just words could ever say.
And what my heart has heard,
Well, it takes my breath away.

(Diana Krall – The Look Of Love Lyrics)

The sky may be starless,
The night may be moonless,
But deep in my heart,
there’s a glow,
for deep in my heart,
I know that you love me.
You love me, because you told me so.

Love letters straight from your heart,
Keep us so near while we’re apart.
I’m not alone in the night,
When I can have all the love you write.

(Diana Krall – Love Letters Lyrics)

Posted in God's creatures, photography, words of thoughts and spirit

a ranting: Sometimes you see them, sometimes you don’t

Pedestrians
pedesterian crabpedesterian fishpedesterian sandpedesterian sea
I decide to dig out these least noticeable creatures who walk close to the bottom of their water domain and give them prominence on this post. They are the typical pedestrians whom nobody bother to look at twice. Seemingly seen by many as they go about their normal daily living and yet they are on most occasions unseen, the ordinary life of the small people, that is their lot in life. Do their lives matter? If not, why bother? Someone overtly concerned with utilitarian meaning may ask. But I, I prefer to look at each life as uniquely designed and planned for a purpose and value to which we may never know. I was startled by the darting away of a very tiny lizard last night as I went into the kitchen to clear away some dry plates and pots. The poor little creature was startled too by this looming ‘giant creature’. Then I thought to myself, why do lizards persist to visit my kitchen regardless how impeccably clean and insect-less it is? I have no answer. The writer’s mind of mine likes to imagine that they have come to leave a mark (like their way of saying, ‘hello’). Perhaps they too must go through their pedestrian path which happens to include my kitchen sink. The result is that I have something additional to do (cleaning up their occasional trail) while walking through my own pedestrian way too. We cross paths. Sometimes we leave marks. Sometimes we don’t.

Posted in Bible verses, photography, words of thoughts and spirit

windows of hope yet

Windows of hope yet.window of hope
This was taken awhile ago. My young wards like visiting artificial abodes for wild creatures. I go along. But I can feel a sense of sadness for no particular reason. On the other hand, I find solace in the following verses (promises) for living creatures. The windows into another world out there beyond the horizon promise a safe place and an assured full life for even the little birds.

The desert creatures will meet hyenas,
and one wild goat will call to another.
Indeed, the night birds will stay there
and will find a resting place.

Sand partridges will make their nests there;
they will lay and hatch their eggs
and will gather their broods under their shadows.
Indeed, the birds of prey will gather there,
each with its mate.

Search and read the scroll of the Lord:
Not one of them will be missing,
none will be lacking its mate,
because he has ordered it by my mouth,
and he will gather them by his Spirit.

He has cast the lot for them;
his hand allotted their portion with a measuring line.
They will possess it forever;
they will dwell in it from generation to generation.

(Verses taken from prophet Isaiah’s book 34:14-17)

Posted in photography, travel, words of thoughts and spirit

A window ranting at daybreak

Windows

window and chair

For no particular reason I was placed at this unusual room looking out of this window. I was supposed to be elsewhere in a grand five-star, but I actually paid more as a walk in to this humble place in a mall because it was too late to return to my five-star abode. Why? Well, it was just a simple outing with a close relative whom I had not seen for quite some time. We had a hurried dinner and then I decided to go back alone by Uber or a cab. But then I received a call that the people I was with decided to sleep and had to lock the room door. So I walked into this place at a mall that had closed and checked in. Since I had nothing to change into I slept in my dinner-wear except for the shoes. By dawn I was already wide awake. So I looked out at this window and waited until 11am for breakfast when the mall opened. There was nothing out there except busy morning traffic which the picture could not show. How strange it is to just wait at the window watching nothing and waiting for time to go by. I have nothing to write on except my mobile phone which battery is running flat. So I just sit at this chair and wait by the window. No food as the hotel does not cater food. No internet as I have to save my phone for emergency use. No sights to see as the room is on a floor that has a roof outside my window covering s large space presumably the shopping mall. No programs on the TV that I like to watch. I watch a bit of the discovery channel about a civilized man’s adventure learning to live the life of a soon extinct lost tribe in a primitive jungle in Africa. The tribe accepted him and built a hut made of straws and mud for him. There is no window but there is an open door. He has a nice scenery outside his door. People living their daily lives and welcoming him as a novelty visitor as well as a willing pupil. They show him and let him tell the world about them.

A window is meant to show something to people. It opens to another space, another realm. The space outside my temporary window is bleak with concrete jungle. Yes, I am in a capital city somewhere. Void of stories of people there is really nothing much to report from this window. I find that I have nothing to show or tell.

(By 10:30am I checked out and went to queue up for almost an hour at the first oriental noodle store for my breakfast which turned out to be really good!)

Posted in blogging, literary magazines and publishing, photography, words of thoughts and spirit

ranting and waiting for a writer

Waiting for a writer. waiting
I have been lying here for quite awhile. But the writer of bullet journal has yet to turn up. I have flown all the way from Europe, to be precise, Hamburg, Germany. Here I am, bound and unopened. Sometimes it gets lonely with the empty pages inside. I have dreams of them filled with love, joy and peace. Even fun perhaps if the household child ventures near and draws some doodles. Or perhaps a meditative pale young man pauses while seeping his usual cup of morning coffee to insert a verse. I wouldn’t even mind if the unkempt boy from next door climbs over the fence and tries out his new coloring pencils… O anything but being neglected and left on this busy table on which I am just a bystander watching all the other gadgets fully engaged. Don’t get me wrong. I am not giving up. I am still waiting for my writer to turn up. That hassled housewife in the kitchen? Or the retiree ageless woman who seems so set to watch the stock market online? The white-haired man who potters in the herbal garden? Any of those students who whirl in and out of the study each occupied with his or her mobile phone? I know the digital competition is tough. But I stay cool. I just dream and wait for that appointed moment with my writer.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
For the uninitiated, here is a guide on what you may do with me: “The Bullet Journal is a customizable and forgiving organization system. It can be your to-do list, sketchbook, notebook, and diary, but most likely, it will be all of the above. It will teach you to do more with less.”

Posted in God's blessing, power of words, words of thoughts and spirit

Read this prayer aloud

Power of God’s word heals.

God's Way of Healing

Read this prayer aloud and let your heart agree with it: Heavenly Father, thank You because You’re my Father and I’m your child. I have been born again. I am born of You. You are my very own Father, and I am Your very own child. Hallelujah! It is written in Your Word that “my God shall supply all my needs according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus” [Phil. 4:19]. I believe that in my heart. You supply my physical needs – that is, healing for my body – for it is written in Matthew 8:17, “Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses.” Jesus took my infirmities. He bore my sicknesses. What He bore, I need not bear. Because He bore them. I’m free; I’m healed. I believe that in my heart. I say it with my mouth. It’s mine. I have it now. He meets all…

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Posted in photography, words of thoughts and spirit

Textures: a sky, an earth, a tree and a light.

texture sky earth treeTextures  of a sky, an earth and a tree as displayed by a light. Sometimes a picture just happens.  This was taken in autumn 2015. I went to see some colors of autumn. Somehow this picture came out rather off color. Looking at it now I realize it had demonstrated something I did not notice then. The light is a key part to the display of textures. The tree appeared to be the centre of the focus and yet it was off the mark. It had blurred into the distant trees. When viewed from this dark side, that autumn seemed bleak and forlorn. However, standing from the side of the light a different world was revealed. In those pictures taken with the light shining on the trees, they were in fact richly dressed up in brilliant red and orange and gold garments, in ripeness and blessed abundance of a good season. I have reserved those pictures for another good story, a story with another weekly photo challenge name.

Posted in life of riches and honor, literary magazines and publishing, photography, power of words, words of thoughts and spirit

beautiful friends

friends copy
Friends together

I decide to give the topic Friend another go. It is too good a theme to miss. Here is a picture I took of human and their dogs. It is reassuring to watch how friendly interactions can take place between: human and human, dog and dog, human and dog, nature and creatures. All basking in the backdrop of a beautiful day, a beautiful lake and its beautiful mountain, beautiful sunset, sky and cool breeze that touches the beautiful water before it touches those who stand at the shore. Such a lot of beauty manifests when we are in unthreatening friendship with each other.

Friendship draws thankfulness. Thankful for life. Thankful that we are alive.

A beautiful verse for us to ponder today:

John 15:15 I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn’t confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me. (A love note from Jesus to His friends)

Posted in photography, words of thoughts and spirit

promise you won’t forget about me, ever. Not even when I’m a hundred.

friendI wanna grow old with you. When I am a hundred and you are ninety-nine, my Friend.  
I use a tree and a rock to depict the kind of friendship we need. both can live to over a century.
Here is a touching passage from a classic children’s book about friendship. It can better describe what being good friends are than I can.
“Then, suddenly again, Christopher Robin, who was still looking at the world, with his chin in his hand, called out “Pooh!” “Yes?” said Pooh. “When I’m–when–Pooh!” “Yes, Christopher Robin?” “I’m not going to do Nothing any more.” “Never again?” “Well, not so much. They don’t let you.” Pooh waited for him to go on, but he was silent again. “Yes, Christopher Robin?” said Pooh helpfully. “Pooh, when I’m–you know–when I’m not doing Nothing, will you come up here sometimes?” “Just me?” “Yes, Pooh.” “Will you be here too?” “Yes Pooh, I will be really. I promise I will be Pooh.” “That’s good,” said Pooh. “Pooh, promise you won’t forget about me, ever. Not even when I’m a hundred.” Pooh thought for a little. “How old shall I be then?” “Ninety-nine.” Pooh nodded. “I promise,” he said. Still with his eyes on the world Christopher Robin put out a hand and felt Pooh’s paw. “Pooh,” said Christopher Robin earnestly, “if I–if I’m not quite–” he stopped and tried again– “Pooh, whatever happens, you will understand, won’t you?” “Understand what?” “Oh, nothing.” He laughed and jumped to his feet. “Come on!” “Where?” said Pooh. “Anywhere.” said Christopher Robin.

So, they went off together. But wherever they go, and whatever happens to them on the way, in that enchanted place on the top of the Forest, a little boy and his Bear will always be playing.”
― A.A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner

Posted in blogging, life of riches and honor, literary magazines and publishing, photography, words of thoughts and spirit

Return to the house of dreaming swiftlets: an announcement


I regret to announce that the above fictional series will be discontinued. The protagonists have expressed the wish for a non-fiction book to be written instead for different purposes. Thank you for viewing and clicking “like”. I really appreciate.
From this blogger.