Friday, May 6, 2016

Purpose For Tears to Social Media Is Ruining Mother's Day 
What is the reason this mother is crying 
Why should some mothers be crying 

Purpose For Tears (English sonnet) 

Oh mother share the purpose for your tears
What touched your heart and causes you to cry
What comfort have I which I may apply
Or will these arms remove your crystal spheres
Sweet mother share with me the reason try
Why all my sunshine fades and disappears
Why every droplet hits my heart like spears
Can kisses renew sparkle to my sky
Without a word she stares beyond unknown
I hold her tight still wondering what’s wrong
Perhaps in silence she may find some rest
And there within a dream which lovers own
She turns to me her voice a gentle song
I cry because I’m happy I’m so blessed 

A toying with emotions English sonnet. Once again we are dealt a mystery. We have a lady, we assume she is a mother, crying. We have speaker, trying to find out why she is crying and how he might comfort her. It is through him our picture is drawn. With the sonnet's very last line the mystery is solved. 

My mother passed away some time ago. She was a remarkable person. I never loved her, but I respected her. She grew up and was a product of Nazi Germany. Her first husband, who brought her to America was abusive. She found the courage and strength to break away from him. With her second husband, Ted, she was granted a world of freedom. Try to imagine a woman, in her 30's, living in San Francisco, trying to deal with freedom, a Nazi trying to deal with diversity, her oldest son marrying a non-white. Ted loved her very much and even bought her a house. Ted was beat up on the stairs of their house by a group of bar ruffians and died from his injuries. The house burned down in a Christmas fire. She met a car motor expert, Don, who became her caring partner, until her death. Don was a bit wild, as were his cars. With Don, my mother realize that person who was just starting to come out with Ted. The stories I could tell. My mother ended up in Las Vegas, not for the gambling, but for the unreal entertainment. Las Vegas is as unreal as the life my mother lived.

I wont go into why I never loved my mother here, Mother's Day being just around the corner. I did respect her, as every son should respect his mother. I was always there for her, whenever she needed my help. I made her very proud of me, and she would follow my exploits and boast to her friends and neighbors, "That's my son, Martin." I pray your relationship with your mother was not as strange as mine. Regardless, let us all take a moment to reflect on one special person, not only on her special day, but always. And enjoy. 

How about this for a Mother's Day song: Spice Girls "Mama"  

Nope - We're not finished with Mother's Day yet  

The modern holiday of Mother's Day was first celebrated in 1908, when Anna Jarvis held a memorial for her mother at St Andrew's Methodist Church in Grafton, West Virginia. Now, the researchers at Cracked have discovered a threat to this noble celebration. now observed by 46 other countries. It seems that our love with the social media may change Mother's Day into one more victim of technology. 
How many of us have texted mom about Mother's day? See, it's starting! "How Social Media Is Ruining Mother's Day" 

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Happy Mother's Day 

My mother is a walking miracle. 
Leonardo DiCaprio

His Window to The Jar of Life 
The window of a man's life 
The jar of our lives 

His Window (Italian sonnet) 

He stares through window at the world he made
Aglow with all the time that he spent there
Each flower joins the thankful serenade
To one whose heart made time to show his care
The roses that he planted are in bloom
And nesting birds are singing in his trees
Amidst the dew a rainbow shows its plume
As ballerinas dance amid the breeze
Through his window life puts on a show
It calls to him this father of this all
It calls to him from whom it got its glow
And if he’s gone each moment they’ll recall
It’s then they saw his lonely window close
And no one cared and no one even cried
Who was this stranger only heaven knows
Who shed a final smile before he died 

An Italian sonnet, a story, a message. A rich, beautiful picture is painted. Then it calls to the person responsible for it all. In the final stanza we are pulled into a lonely room and death. The goal of this sonnet should be confusion and hope. 

We all have to die. That is fact of earthly life. This sonnet paints a picture of an individual who was comfortable ending this life. We are not given any insight into any religious views. We are only granted an insight as to what this person is seeing. Wait. The sonnet gives no clue if all this was really happening or only in the man's mind. We only can guess, he died happy, satisfied at what he saw through his window. 

With death waiting for us all, I believe we should all enjoy those things that make us happy and satisfied. It is important to know what makes us (not "them") happy. There will come a moment when it's all too late. We can go on with reincarnation or a place in a paradise where we all shall meet again or a myriad of continuations faith is air too, but our time here is over. Remember the smile as a man died. So shall we all live our lives. Yes, "shall", not "should". There is only this and this will know that we were here and celebrate a life well spent. And when another time is over, just like the sonnet, life will echo, there was someone who knew how to enjoy. 

How about a little classical music: Ludwig Van Beethoven 
"Symphony No.6 (Pastoral) - 3rd Movement" (the abrupt cut off is the 4th movement) 

What does life and a mayonnaise jar have in common 

Founded in 1831, New York University (NYU) is ranked the top schools in America for the study of philosophy (per QS World University Rankings). One of the classic explanations of life is the "lesson of the jar". If you have never heard or seen  this explanation before, are you in for a treat. Meir Kay has put together a video of this classic lesson. 
Meir's version has a funny ending. One that I doubt we will never see in any school. "The Jar of Life (Inspirational Short Film)" 

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Very little is needed to make a happy life; 
it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking. 
Marcus Aurelius

Thursday, May 5, 2016

No Longer There to Diego Goes to Mexico 
A man searches for a past 
A puppet  searches for his father 

No Longer There (poem) 

All around he searches
Streets which now are bare
This poor and lonely fellow
With so much to share
Once people laughed as children cast
Magic in the air
But now an echo answers
They’re no longer there
Those moments wrapped in Joy
Endless were their flare
Neighbors knew their fellows
Helping hand to spare
All life’s richness they were blessed
Passed on him to bear
But thoughts within his mind
Were no longer there
So in his time he left
Tearful was their prayer
And all which he had learned
Heightened life’s affair
But as he grew in wisdom
Soul became aware
And now the Joys he sacrificed
Are no longer there 

Just a poem with a message. Yes, there is only one rhyme sound. But did we notice the beat? The non-rhyming lines have any number of beats. The rhyming lines all have the same rhyme sounds and all have exactly five beats. Why? 

Life is funny. I was a good singer (so people say) until my twenties when I lost my voice. Who would have imagined I would become one of the top orators for the Masons. The job required setting all three degrees to memory, (plus I memorized the funeral ritual). There were men who knew the ritual much better than me. What set me apart was my ability to touch my audience. The key to this ability was listening. Listening to what others had to say. Listening to others lives.

Now, what does this have to do with the poem? When I was working my way up the ranks, most of the members were up there in age. I can't tell how many times I would hear people share with me things from the past. Things that are no longer there. Things that they miss. Things that they would have done more of. Things that they sacrificed. Life is change. Things evolve. Some things disappear and new things appear. For us humans, nothing stays the same. We can recreate a memory, but we cannot go back in time. 

Keeping this in our minds, in our hearts, make the most of now. Don't let opportunities pass us by. That extra kiss. That little extra time. that visit with a family member, a friend, a special place. Don't pass up an opportunity to make a moment better. We can do it. We can feel it. We are all amazing creations. Start from there. Make the richness of now and ever more than the mistakes (notice, I said mistakes) of yesterday. And when we wake to the sunshine, which is us, enjoy.

A memory and a song to go with the poem: The Brothers Four "Greenfields" 

Talk about memories - who's my father 

Did you know that Steve Jobs, the co-founder, chairman, and chief executive officer of Apple Inc., was adopted as an infant and never met his biological father. The same is true about Diego, created by Rudy Mancuso. I mean he doesn't know his father either. He has decides to travel to Mexico, in an attempt to find his father and to let tag along with him. 
Here's a mind boggler: though Diego now lives in Los Angeles, he was conceived in New York. (Plus he's a puppet!) "Diego Goes to Mexico" 

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The power for creating a better future 
is contained in the present moment: 
You create a good future by creating 
a good present. 
Eckhart Tolle

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

There Was A Love to Trick Shot 
Some people aim at a love of a dream 
Some people aim at the impossible trick shot 

There Was A Love (English sonnet) 

There was a love which set the world aglow
Each moment blossomed splendors of delight
Each heartbeat precious treasures would ignite
The scent of life was gift it would bestow
There was a love whose meaning knew no height
The sense of beauty seasoned in its flow
The dreams of golden sunsets long ago
This source of passion’s hope and endless light
Another page within a storybook
Another fancy made to flame desire
Imaginations others oft sigh of
Perhaps a special trickle in love’s brook
A memory of moments set on fire
Each morning’s kiss will show there was a love 

Only a dream in this English sonnet. There is one lesson in the "conflict" stanza (the first triplet). In the sonnet the speaker is describing a pretty unbelievable love. In the "conflict" stanza the lover is questioning his grasp of reality. Although he is wondering his own reality, he doesn't want wake up. Thus we have a subtle display of a conflict. Another point to keep us wondering about this dreamy love affair. Notice that the sonnet ends with a wake up kiss. 

Imagine a young lad moving in with the girl of his dream in a palace in the sky. What a love affair we had. It was unbelievable. The endless moments, like our palace in the sky. They all came to a peak when Arlene and I ran the entertainment at the Lodge. These were no small affairs. After two months we would entertain 200 and more guests. Our BIG parties were only the beginning. Arlene and I were invited to many other parties. It was not unusual for us to go out three to four times a week. It was that time I often mention. That time Arlene and I returned to our 20's. Between all the new dresses, the visits to the salons and all the attention, Arlene was a princess. This was the person I woke up to. This was my dance partner. This was the one by my side. Was it all a young lad's imagination? 

Was I famous entertainer? No. Was I a successful businessman? No. Did I become wealthy? No. But I was blessed to live a dream. It is hard (if not impossible) to convince me that there is no such thing as magic, things that cannot be explained. (It was just the environment I swam in.) Can everyone live their dream? I don't honestly know. I do know this: there were others who touched our world and were changed. Something they saw or experienced had sparked something sleeping. In short, people can change. Can everyone live their dream? I don't know, but it might be fun trying. And while we are trying, remember this... Enjoy. 

How about a love song: saxophone cover "Unchained Melody" 

From a heart to a bull's-eye 

One of the best trick shot artist of all time was Howard Hill, an archer, who was unofficially referred to as the "World's Greatest Archer". Howard was inducted into the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame in 1971 for his skill in archery. Corridor Digital must have heard about Howard Hill, because they got their boys together to show off some of their skills. With some pretty amazing weapons from Battleborn, I might add. 
If I didn't mention it, the boys biggest target is our funny bone. "Battleborn Trick Shots" 

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Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die, 
life is a broken-winged bird that cannot fly. 
Langston Hughes

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

I Love to Bite Size Candies 
A lover sings of the glories of his beloved 
A candy sings of sweetness through memories 

I Love (Italian sonnet) 

I love the way you freshen every day
I love to watch you gently greet the sun
I love and know a new day has begun
I love each day that you start out this way
I love to hear you whisper softly clear
You are the song held closest to the heart
I love its sweet refrain we’ll never part
You make it clear it is our soul I hear
I love the view the waking dream of you
I love to watch your body play with light
I love the way which you excite delight
I love how you ignite my point of view
I love the sound of having you around
You move in melodies of memories
I love to lay amidst your passions’ breeze
You move around and sway my world in sound 

The magic in an Italian sonnet. It is partially clear, what is going on here. Between the "I love" and the "You", it is pretty clear, we are dealing with a love-sick fella, Yet, the whole thing follows the Italian sonnet format. I did say "partially clear". If this sonnet worked its magic, we didn't notice the hidden word play. Take a look at the first and fourth lines of each stanza. The words which rhyme are hidden in the lines. For instance in the first stanza, "way' and "day" are both in the first and fourth lines. See? Tah-da.

Men. Want to make a woman beautiful? Tell her so. Most of us like hearing about the things we do well. Especially from people who are important to us. My wife, Amor, for instance. She is getting up there in years. Looking good and being attractive to me is important to her. By telling her she's pretty or cute or staring at her an inordinate time does something to her. I had better be honest, because she is going to check in a mirror. My reward: An extra kiss and a very beautiful wife. This magic also works well with cooking, with shopping, with education, with creativity, with achieving... It works well with almost everything. (Don't overdo it, though.)

Everyone, compliments are "worth their weight in gold." I can't tell how fully honestly complimenting people and organizations has worked for me. That's right. I said organizations. When I raised toys for Toys For Tots, I had the Marine Corps send a "Thank you" letter to every organization that supported the effort. The result was, more toys. I know a certain company that made a lot of money by complimenting its employees and customers. Now, it's our turn. If compliments can make money for a company or a wife more beautiful, imagine what it will do for us. I'm sure we have warm thoughts or feelings that we hold inside. Let some of those warm feelings/thoughts out. Warm positive expressions have a tendency of multiplying, spreading and returning. Fill the world with positiveness and enjoy. 

This calls for some kissing: Fermo Dante Marchetti "Fascination" 

Kisses are sweet and so is candy 

M&M"s were created by Forrest Mars, Sr., son of the founder of the Mars Company, Frank C. Mars, who got the idea for the candy in the 1930s during the Spanish Civil War. For one reason and another this delicious treat wouldn't be produced until 1941 in Clinton Hill, Newark, New Jersey. To celebrate M&M's 75th anniversary Nick Bertke, of POGOMIX, has created a musical mix using M&M TV commercials from way back when to now.  
Grab your M&M's and get ready for tsome treats. "Bite Size Candies | Pogo" 

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Too often we underestimate the power 
of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, 
an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, 
all of which have the potential to turn a life around. 
Leo Buscaglia

Monday, May 2, 2016

The Dream Castle to Fruit Ninja In Real Life 
The story of a prince his dream castle 
The tale of warriors who risk their lives 

The Dream Castle (Shakespearean sonnet) 

In his dream castle taking in the view
A noble prince sat with so much to share
And all the world was waiting for him there
There was no lack of things for him to do
The townsfolk waited for someone to care
Perhaps a bridge to mend or build anew
Some dream that only he can make come true
To be the Joy for someone in despair
In his dream castle plans so grand were made
From his dream castle visions did parade
With his dream castle others he’d persuade
To his dream castle the prince had made the grade
Yet all of this was destined to defeat
The prince grew old and never left his seat 

A Shakespearean sonnet with some problems. Let's put aside this Shakespearean sonnet has nothing to do with love. The normal rhyme scheme for this type of sonnet is: ABAB - CDCD - EFEF - GG. The rhyme scheme used here is: ABBA - BAAB - CCCC - DD. Then there is the play on words "dream castle" (which dominates the third stanza). What happened? We have a prince who never left his throne. (Never used his power.) 

In 1991, I joined the Masonic fraternity. My egotism aside, I don't consider myself a special person. I'm certainly not financially well off. As a mason I have come in direct contact with some wealthy people. This sonnet was inspired by those few who earned their fortunes, their businesses from their fathers. Of these, there were a few men who have done little, but live off the wealth another has built for them. Now, I'm not holding this against them. Coming in contact them got me thinking. These were not bad individuals. What is holding them from realizing their full potential? 
There are any number of things that hold an individual back. I do not consider myself qualified to prescribe an answer, I do know that there are any number of reasons individuals stop short. A popular culprit many tout up is "fear". I'm from the school that believes the reasons may be more varied. 
I have accomplished a lot in my life. My single biggest accomplishment, I believe, is showing others "we can". Some see me work my magic and think that I am special. When they uncover the truth of it, they realize, in many ways, I'm a lot like them. There is something in all of us that makes us special. The gifts of nature are infinite. Who fully knows how many of those gifts we as individuals are blessed? I am confident of this: That we, as individuals can. We can complain or we can be an instrument of change. We can. We can sit and watch TV or be the one others watch. We can. Knowing this, what is the next thing we are going to change, create  or help, be it planting a seed or organizing our neighbors to bring about a change? Knowing and confident that we are all special, let us look out of the window of our dream castle at our accomplishments and enjoy.

Princes and dream castles: Eugene Ormandy "Scheherazade" 

There are heroes and there are hero sandwiches 

Paddy melon, coyote melon, European spindle, linden, manchineel, osage-orange, privet, silverbell, snowberry, soapberry, suicide tree fruit, thorn apple and wahoo is a list of just some of the fruits that can kill us. Into this dangerous world comes the fruit ninjas. What are fruit ninjas you are probably wondering. Well, shudder at the thought as two frightening warriors meet to do battle. 
Make sure the children are safe in bed. "FRUIT NINJA IN REAL LIFE : PART II" 
(No deadly fruit was used in the making of this video. That would be too dangerous.) 

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If you can dream it, you can do it. 
Walt Disney

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Remember The Kisses to Loving Someone With Alzheimer’s 
A lover remembers the kisses through the riddle of time 
A daughter deals with kisses time has taken away 

Remember The Kisses (poem)

Remember the kisses
Those moment together
The dreams which we made
The stardust cascade
Rich splendor our trade
Remember the kisses
Those strolls through the park
The nights on the town
The world was our sea
To cruise effort free
And there was time
Time enough to hold you
Time enough for wonders
Endless were your smiles
Endless were the stars within your eyes
Ever was the music from your lips
Ever had created wishes
With time enough for endless kisses
We were truly blessed
To bath in a time
Unknown by others
We were truly blessed
To make memories
From nothing at all
We were richly blessed
Greeting the summers
Remember the kisses
But time the blessing a curse
As meaning was stolen away
As now I bear the endlessness
And dream of the fleeting time
Which mars the nights of others
Remember the kisses
Whispers lingering yet
The dreams we once traversed
The Joy with which I’m cursed
Forever now immersed 

I leave it up to you as to what form to call this poem. This poem contains some rhymes. This poem contains some order. One thing to notice is how the present seems to call back to the past. "Remember the kisses", as we are to find out, is a blessing and a curse. 

Yes, this poem is about me. I don't know when it all began or when I started to notice, to appreciate. There seemed to be an abundance of time available for those moments with Arlene. The outings, the dates, the celebrations, the vacation, the gazing in those eyes, the hugging, the kisses, there seemed to be more than enough time. I cannot remember myself wishing for more time. Arlene and I were blessed with time enough to make and enjoy our moments to the fullest Time was on our side. 
Then Arlene died. The initial pain and sorrow was overshadowed by the rainbow of endless magic that was our life. But time proved itself a two-sided sword. The same "endlessness" for those kisses turned into an "endlessness" to remember. I began to see how long time could be. My solution was to fill my time with charity work. After four years, Amor came into my life. She would be a blessing for another of time's tricks. I am truly blessed. 
We are all blessed. We have a couple with "endlessness" to enjoy. Then she was taken away. He had the "endless" moments of joy they made. Then time turned a blessing into a tedium. Amor entered my life. Get the picture? I like to say, "life is a roller coaster." Some roller coasters are long. Some roller coasters are short. Some are are very exciting. Some are just plain fun. Sometimes troubles and hardship may be unwelcome guests in our life. But they have their purpose and go. Remember, we are all blessed. Remember this, especially as we create those magical moments in our life. Remember this, as we reflect, "Whose life is it anyway?" Time may be short or long, a blessing or curse. But there is a flower, and that flower is you. Enjoy. 

And when we think of time, what song comes to mind: Pink Floyd "Time" 

What is greater than time 

Alzheimer’s disease is an irreversible, progressive brain disorder that slowly destroys memory and thinking skills, and eventually the ability to carry out the simplest tasks. The number of Americans living with Alzheimer's disease is growing , with an estimated 5.4 million Americans having Alzheimer's disease in 2016. Buzz Feed Video has created an awesome video about how Alzheimer's disease affects a family and life's greatest weapon against this debilitating disease and all hardships. Yes, it is greater than time itself. 
Sorry that this video is not funny. What it lacks in humor it makes up with in compassion. "Loving Someone With Alzheimer’s" 

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The way of peace is the way of love. 
Love is the greatest power on earth. 
It conquers all things. 
Peace Pilgrim