Category: Poetry & Prose


AFTERWARDS

Afterwards
When swords are downed
And dust has settled
On the ground

Afterwards
When words are done
And actions all have
Come and gone

Afterwards
When Metal rings
No more upon the
Heart that sings

Afterwards
When Air is still
And blood and stone
Bend to your will

Afterwards
When Water flows
To cover bodies
Of your foes

Afterwards
When Earth is giving
Soft beneath the
Flesh that’s living

Afterwards
When Wood is cut
And fire heals
The broken heart

Afterwards.

By:
AlyZen Moonshadow

image (Oil painting “Rose Red” or “The Rose Knight” by Dan Dos Santos)

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Blue Stag

When I was living in Ireland, I once had a most surreal experience. Where I lived was out in the sticks, the house I was renting was surrounded by the forest. My only neighbour for more than a mile was the farmhouse diagonally opposite me, and it too was surrounded by the forest. Hardly any cars went past our road, unless they had business in the town 3 miles away.

That day I’d driven my car out of my driveway onto the road, but as I’d forgotten something in the house, I reparked my car parallel to my gate. After going back into the house to get that something (I forget what it was now), I got back into my car and had just put the key into the ignition when I heard an almighty rustling sound, followed by a clatter of hooves.

There, right in front of me, not 10 feet away, stood an enormous stag. He must have broken cover from the forest surrounding my house. He stood in the middle of the road, steam coming off his nostrils, and pawed the asphalt with his solid hooves.

For a full minute we stared into each other’s eyes. I from behind the windscreen of my car, he majestically from where he stood in the middle of the road.

I was close enough to note the soft brown colour of his dark velvety eyes as we locked stares. He was truly a majestic, noble creature. For one beautiful moment we were connected. For me the day suddenly looked brighter, even though the Irish sun was as usual hiding behind some clouds.

And then the stag suddenly sniffed the air, gave a grunt, turned and before I knew it he’d jumped my neighbour’s wooden fence and cantered off into the forest beyond.

That was the day I had an appointment to see someone who practised shamanism. When I got there, after we were seated, my Shaman friend asked if I had experienced any strange or inexplicable events that morning. I told him about my encounter with the stag. And he nodded wisely and suggested perhaps that stag was my Animal Totem.

To this day I still recall the jolt in my heart when that stag broke cover and landed right in front of my car. I am convinced that my Shaman friend was right. The Stag is my Animal Totem, my protective spirit.

And so when I saw this mass-produced canvas art at my local KMart, I felt compelled to buy it and hang it in my bedroom. Where it can once more watch over me. Blue is the colour of my Aura, I’ve been told, so this Blue Stag resonates even more with me.

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Detritus

I am pulling and pulling
This great weight on my back
Like an ox in the fields
Struggling to get free
Of the muck that besmirches me
This cloying, clinging mud

Why is it such an arduous task
This simple pulling
Out of a sticky situation
Why does my chest feel
Like there’s an iron band around it
Holding me back?

I turn my head and look back
And now I see
That what I thought I was pulling
Was not what I am pulling
No, now I know the reason
Why it’s been so hard

It isn’t because I’m weak
It isn’t because of the mud
It is hard simply because
The weight that I’ve been pulling
Is not just the detritus
Of past emotions and actions

It is all that once was
And, clinging to it
Intertwined in a death grip
As real as any living thing
Comes the spectre of The Other
A mocking, grinning skull

Pulling one is hard enough
Carrying the extra baggage is worse
And now I’ve learned that
Since the remains are so entangled
Impossible to part completely
I am being hampered, I am hobbled

So instead I break my own chains
Step out of the metal vice
That held my fluttering heart
And I walk forward
Into the unknown
Alone, but free from my shackles.

And now I am finally moving ahead
And I steal a look back
And I see the detritus behind me
It is unable to free itself
It lies on the ground thrashing
Its arms still around The Other.

By: AlyZen Moonshadow

image(Image source: Google)

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Everyone has high and low periods in their lives, it’s only normal, as Life is constantly changing and never the same.

Whenever I feel low, one of the things I do to help raise my spirits is to look on Google Images and Pinterest for affirmation quotes. It’s reassuring to know I’m not alone in the way I’m feeling, that countless others have experienced the same and lived to tell the tale. What doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger.

Here are just some of my current favourite affirmations or sayings, for a positive outlook on Life when it gets you down. (Courtesy of Google Images and Pinterest).

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So, whenever you’re feeling not so on top of the world, remember to Stay Positive. It’s only Change. Choose Happiness!

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Appreciation

I was leafing through the latest issue (August 2014) of one of my favourite home decor magazines, Elle Decoration, when this image caught my attention.

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It wasn’t so much the sofa itself that got to me, it was the caption on it. “I found this sofa on the side of the road”.

Two disparate thoughts struck me simultaneously. One was “Oh, how lucky for this person to have found such a fabulous sofa on the street”. The other, much louder thought was “Why would anyone throw out such a beautiful piece of furniture?”

Granted, that sofa might have become shabby from years of wear and tear. It might have been soiled or damaged by water or the elements, the springs in its seat might have been broken. It might even have been thrown out to make way for a more modern sofa.

What makes me angry is why the previous owner did not see it fit to repair that sofa, restore it to its former glory, give it another lease of life. Why was it summarily chucked out on the street? No doubt when that sofa was brand new, its owners loved and admired it, they sat on it and ran their hands over its velvet seat, carressed its detailed curves and carvings, boasted about it to their friends and family. Family portraits were taken on it with pride, it featured at christenings, coming of age parties, birthdays, weddings, funerals, Easter, Christmas. For years it was literally part of the furniture, like a beloved pet, a faithful retainer.

So, for such a wonderful object to meet such an ignominous end on the side of a road, that is the real tragedy.

But, luckily for it, someone with an eye for beauty and potential spotted this treasure before it could be carted away to some dump somewhere. Someone brought it home, cleaned it up, repaired it, gave it new padding and covers, filled in any chips, cracks or breaks. Someone gave it Love again.

It’s said that we don’t appreciate something until it’s gone. Well, here is a prime example. And what saddens me more is that this metaphor can be so easily translated to human relationships. Sometimes we take others for granted so much so that we fail to appreciate what they do for us, until they stop doing it.

Here are some quotes on Appreciation that I’ve taken from Google Images.
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We could all learn a lesson or two from that old sofa.

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You and I
We are like Water and Oil
We meet, we exchange pleasantries
We may even like each other
Or even fall in Love
And delude ourselves into believing
That our Souls may co-mingle

But in truth
We are like Water and Oil
We are two Oceans
Two Seas
Two Rivers
That meet but do not mix

We are too different
We are like Water and Oil
Put us together
Shake us together
– we may give the impression
That we are together
But ultimately
We will go our separate ways

You and I
We are like Water and Oil
The one Ingredient that
Could have forged us together
with strong bonds
– the Emulsifier -
Or call it Love
That is the one thing that we lost
Along the way
– You threw it to the winds on a whim
With someone else

You and I
We are like Water and Oil.

Poem by AlyZen Moonshadow

I was inspired to write this poem by personal circumstances and by these images, which show where bodies of water meet but do not mix. Scroll down to the bottom image for an explanation of this natural phenomenon.

imageRhone River meets Arve River in Geneva, Switzerland.

imageCaribbean Sea meets Atlantic Ocean

imageWhere the Indian Ocean meets the Southern Ocean at Cape Leeuwin, Augusta, Western Australia.

imageJialing meets Yangtze in Chongqing, China

imageThe Rio River meets the Amazon River in Manaus, Brazil

imageGulf of Alaska

And the most famous one, perhaps, of the Gulf of Alaska (the one that went viral):
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I found the following excerpt from this site: http://skeptics.stackexchange.com/questions/7748/is-there-a-place-in-the-world-where-two-oceans-meet-and-they-dont-mix

Kent Smith, a.k.a Flickr user kentsmith9 claims to be the original photographer of this image.

He writes:

I thought this was the most unusual thing I saw on the Alaskan cruise in the water. These two bodies of water were merging in the middle of the Alaskan gulf and there was a foam developing only at their junction.

I thought this was an example of a Halocline described on Wikipedia. A few people have commented that a Halocline is more of a horizontal phenomenon and this is more vertically oriented.

I am pretty confident that what you are seeing is a result of the melting glaciers being composed of fresh water and the ocean has a higher percentage of salt causing the two bodies of water to have different densities and therefore makes it more difficult to mix. I’m told they will eventually mix given enough time.

People have asked me if I just happened to look out over the edge of the ship deck and see this. Actually I had been on the deck for quite some time when I noticed what appeared to be a shadow cast by clouds over the ocean about 5 miles in front of the ship. As we approached the shadow I realized it was something different. I took many shots up to the point I shot this one, but never posted them until a year after this image went viral. I really posted them to convince people I did not Photoshop this image.

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Let’s just say I’m going through some upheavals in my life. Not of my own doing, mind, but it happened and now someone’s got to pick up the pieces and move on. And that person is me. I don’t know how, but I know I’ll do it.

I’ll just let the pictures speak for themselves, for they do so far better than I ever could.

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All images from Google Image search results under “Epiphany Quotes”.

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7th July is Global Forgiveness Day. There is an International Forgiveness Day on the 1st Sunday of August, and most religions have their own Forgiveness Days.

It may already be the 8th of August here in Australia, but we are so far ahead we are behind the rest of the world LOL. Most other countries are still celebrating the 7th of July, so I shall simply follow suit.

So, what is “forgiveness”? According to Wikipedia, ” Forgiveness is the intentional and voluntary process by which a victim undergoes a change in feelings and attitude regarding an offense, lets go of negative emotions such as vengefulness, with an increased ability to wish the offender well. Forgiveness is different from condoning (failing to see the action as wrong and in need of forgiveness), excusing (not holding the offender as responsible for the action), pardoning (granted by a representative of society, such as a judge), forgetting (removing awareness of the offense from consciousness), and reconciliation (restoration of a relationship).”

So, today being Global Forgiveness Day, I am sharing with you some quotable quotes that I found on Google. They explain things very well and succinctly. Pow!!

image This is so true. You can never retract your words, or indeed your actions. Once the damage is done, it’s never going to be the same again. And to expect the victim to “Forgive and Forget” is just a glib way of saying “I’m getting away with it”.

image If someone who knows they have done wrong cannot bring themselves to admit their guilt and take steps to rectify the situation, then their silence serves to reinforce their guilt. This saying is relevant also to other parties who condoned, or excused the guilty party’s behaviour. Their crime is just as bad. Shame on them!

image SIGH. Some people just lack a guilty conscience and don’t understand why their actions could have hurt another person. People like these are mostly self-absorbed, egoistic and narcissistic. They can only see things their way, they don’t believe that they could ever do anything wrong…”So why are you kicking up such a big fuss over nothing?!”

image A narcissist thinks the whole world revolves around him. Any injury to his name is an insult to his reputation, which he must try to protect as much as possible. Or so he believes. When in reality, it is his moral character that is in question, not his reputation.

image This speaks volumes.

image Especially if the person thinks they can just go out and continue where they left off. Remember the story of the boy who cried “Wolf”? The first time, perhaps even the second time, you would want to believe his lies…but after that, you just don’t know whether he’s telling you the truth or not.

image the 4 most important aspects in Life are Love, Honesty, Truth and Respect. Without these, you have nothing, and believe me, the power of those 4 simple words put together in terms of relationships is nothing to be sniff at. When someone has wronged you, you don’t just lose one of the 4, you stand to lose them all.

image Ok, the softer approach maybe. Forgive, but never forget, unless you want to get hurt again. What are you, into S&M??!

image Great rapping! And sound advice too. Follow this one, ladies, and you won’t go wrong.

image Another pop culture quotation on Forgiveness. True!

And finally, a word to those who have wronged me. You know who you are. If you want forgiveness, sure I’ll forgive you. I’ll even wish you all the best for your future. But you’re sadly mistaken if you believe I will, or even should, forget what you did and trust you like before. I am not a fool. Your actions and reactions have only served to make me even stronger than ever before.

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Epiphany

Sitting discontented
Wondering Why
And How this came to be
Puzzling over options
Available to me

An unexpected friend
From out of the mist
Enters my consciousness
We share our many
Common experiences

Talking is a way of
Battling our inner demons
Lay them out on the table
Let’s slay and dissect them
If we are able

Suddenly I feel
A great warmth all over me
Like a reassuring cloud
It envelopes my soul
Makes me say aloud

“I’ve just had an Epiphany!”
Now I am able to see
The path that lays before me
Things that are meant to be
Suddenly I feel free

The road is long and winding
But I have my compass
In my newly liberated heart
A simple paradigm shift
Was all I needed to start

I shall not be a victim
Or an emotional punchbag
Or a trophy on a shelf
My path has always been
The one I made for myself

Sidelined I was,
Deluded, perhaps
Lulled into a false sense of security
– That was all smoke and mirrors
– Just a fallacy

Time to pick up my bags
And all that is precious to me
– My son, my books, my pets, my Art
These are the only things
That matter to my heart

“I’ve just had an Epiphany!”
Now I am able to see
The path that lays before me
Things that are meant to be
Suddenly I feel free

By: AlyZen Moonshadow

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Let’s get this straight:
In every relationship, there exists
Ample opportunities for straying.

All it takes is for one party to start
Lying, in real life or online,
In relation to, and undermining
Everything held sacred by marriage.
No longer is confidence shared or
True…When one party loses
Respect or honour for the other,
In fact, when the spouse
Becomes “the other person”, why then
Everything changes.

The moral analogy of this tale is:
If you throw a plate to the ground, it breaks. Even if you then say “Sorry” to the remains of the plate, even if you heartily mean your apology, there is nothing on earth that will change that plate back to the way it was before. The Japanese have an artistic method of repairing old, broken ceramics, called Kintsugi or Kintsukoroi, using gold or silver lacquer inlay. Yes, it is indeed repairing the breaks and restoring the vessel to some degree of functionality, it may even make the vessel look even more beautiful. But remember, that plate/vessel/heart will NEVER be the same again.

The cause of my own personal pain is written here on this very page; it is concealed to be revealed. I know my heart will heal with time, and I know it will be more beautiful for having been broken by the one person that I thought I could trust, and another that I thought was a friend. Ahhh…Kintsukoroi for the broken heart!

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(By the way, if you’re wondering, it is not defamation/libel/slander if the facts are TRUE). I rest my case.

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