The second meeting of the month was exciting as always. Our round table discussion was tabled so we could hear from all our readers this week. We did take a few minutes at the break to discuss what aid we used to self-edit our work. Most of the writers use aids embedded in their word processing programs or other free-standing programs purchased or downloaded from open-source software. But all use their skill and knowledge to supplement the electronic aids. A few continue to use printed dictionaries, thesauruses, and reference materials. It all works.
Our first reader was a holdover from the last meeting when not all got the chance to read. Jeff Kutcher read a chapter entitled Life in a Solar. A Solar is a complex in which families live in small apartments usually two or three rooms. Residents stand in line for water as most apartments do not have running water. A single faucet in the courtyard is turned on once a day, maybe. Residents vie to be near the front of the line to fill containers with enough water to last until the next release of the needed water. Amauri and his friend turn the wait into a time to play as well as hold their place in line.
Constantine’s rule of Rome had not yet begun in 311 A.D. but intrigue and subterfuge abound in his camps in Gaul. The high priest of Apollo’s temple competes with the Bishop of the Christians for Constantine’s ear. History shows us what occurred but fails to give us an insight into the conversations among the conspirators and in the household of the soon-to-be Emperor, but Ernie Ovitz does in his books.
A legionnaire Colonel and Mamon, a woman of means, are wed. She leaves Colonel Pierre for a Cuban diplomat and moves to Cuba. The Colonel lives only to enjoy his friends and a few evenings at a local café in Paris. One night he meets a girl, young, comely, and in need. A few francs, a charity donation; another evening she again is there, he continues to give her money and an attraction grows in him. He looks forward to seeing her, but one day she’s gone, and loneliness sets in. Look for this tome in the future, a love story, a saga of intrigue, where does it go, how does it end? Only Peter Frickle knows, or does he?
It’s been a while since our friend and poet James O Kelly joined us, he’s been busy as a volunteer teaching 4th and 5th graders about poetry. We welcomed him home again this meeting and enjoyed his wonderful work with two poems. Anderson Creek and Acid Rain were inspired by his youth in Pennsylvania’s coal mining communities. Descriptive and poignant, one could hear the roar of coal trucks and smell the sour aroma of polluted water.
Cruising, a look at Don Westerfield’s idea of a perfect cruise imparted his sense of humor as well as made this listener a little jealous. Able to relax in the warm sunshine while cool ocean breezes sweep over you and at the same time read your favorite author’s latest work seems idyllic and he expresses just that in his poem. On the other side of the idyllic spectrum, The Last Day, provides an unexpected look at what a person might feel after a fatal love affair. Check out Don’s work in one or more of his published tomes.
Flash Fiction has captured Bruce Haedrich’s fancy. He’s writing a FF story each day this year and hopes to publish an anthology at the end of all 365 stories. This week’s entry was The Phone Call, a one-sided conversation in which we are privy to only one of the speakers; fascinating.
A lost city dwelling beneath the ocean, could it be Atlantis? Rene Fletcher takes us on a submersible to explore ruins discovered only after an earthquake and storm create a fissure in the seabed off the Bahamian coast. Intrigue and corruption play a role in who’s allowed to know about the project. Officials and governments are covering up something while the wonders of the deep inspire awe in the explorers.
Another poet took center stage as Scott Anderson read 6 short works. Jailer showed us how he retaliated in hearing a sharp critique of his everyday speech. He shot back by dangling participles and possibly tossing off a few clichés. Whispers, Voice Mail, Closets, Mosaic, and Family Photos all gave us a glimpse into his true nature as he mourned his wife. More than one listener wiped a tear from their eye as he finished.
When Parker Converse was in the islands of the Caribbean, he met a man named Billy Bob aboard his yacht, The Southern Belle. The yacht was, in Parker’s words, OUTRAGEOUS. Hired to captain the yacht for no money but an all-expense paid Caribbean Voyage a new deckhand was interviewed. Expecting to meet a salty Swede, a Swedish beauty came aboard and because of limited quarters, she agreed to bunk with the Captain. He stopped reading here but promised to continue the next meeting. I’ll be there, for sure.
We welcomed Keri Dieffenwierth back after an extended absence, after all, world travel and a broken neck might be an excuse for not attending. Keri, we missed you and hope to see you more often in the future. Although she didn’t bring some of her own work to read, she did read from a favored work, A River Runs Through It by Norman Maclean. Great writing is never unwelcome.
That pretty much sums up our meeting, I hope to see you again in July and until then, KEEP ON WRITING.