Here’s Pongal, a festival that celebrates the Sun’s glory, might
Observed well by Indians, its epicentre sure being south
In mainly a state that bears those who employ an old tongue to mouth
Their praises and plaudits to yon great and mighty Sun giving light.
The author, who can speak a bit of Spanish and Welsh besides swearing in Punjabi, thanks to his Indian friends at school, also stresses while accepting the reality might be hard, if one does accept, then it will take the sting off the inevitable rejections and negative reviews that all authors get. ‘With rejections, try to be level-headed when they land. First consider whether they are sincere, or whether they are just a form rejection with little thought or substance behind them. If they are sincere, then study them carefully, take on board the comments and try to learn,’ he explains, adding, ‘This is especially important if those rejections go into specific detail about what did and didn’t work. Try and see this as honest advice from top people within the industry, which, in any other scenario, you would probably be paying good money for.’
I clutch little baby hands, his body wrapped in a hospital sheet.
It’s blue and red – much like his skin; my baby.
His face is the image of peace, but there’s something
not right in the silence of it all. They take him and hide him
away from my desperate eyes, but it’s a loud silence
that has my whole chest-bursting at the ribs.
I beg every god I know that he might breathe.
Besides, Mr Frankel shares with us that being an English coach and editor, he has to make time for other essential activities as well. While he usually writes at night for a few hours and takes breaks every fifty minutes or so, we learn that during the day too, he gets interesting ideas, which he more often than not jots down immediately. ‘During the day, however, I teach ESL (English as a Second Language) besides editing other writers’ works. Then, I do my own thing, which is writing. When I want to relax, I listen to music, read, or try to sleep. Most writers are sleep deprived at one point or another, and sleep is imperative to being creative.’
Your voice is music to me,
The kind that makes you wish the song would never end.
I could travel the seven seas within your beautiful eyes,
And to get lost in them would truly be a blessing.
To love a beauty such as yourself is an honor I hardly deserve,
For you bring out the best of me.
I am going to stay wounded.
And I shall never trow that
I can forgive those who have wronged me.
This might surprise you, but
my soul will avenge my perpetrators.
And I won’t ever want to think that
forgiveness is an art.
Speaking about her published novella entitled ‘The Unbreakable Thread’ published last year on Amazon, Google Books, and Notion Press, Nissha says it is a romantic fiction in the new adult genre. ‘It is based on a Japanese legend. It deals with two souls who are destined to meet each other,’ she shares with us, clearly not willing to divulge more details.
This year we worked from home, to our workplaces said ‘buh-bye!’
And then at home we joyed with our beloved ménage, kinsfolk.
When March bade to each of us that sad and alarming ‘Hi’,
we did confine ourselves to our homes, thus becoming broke.
The morning writer, whose list of favourite authors changes all the time, has had her short stories featured in the award-winning anthologies Elmwood Stories to Die For and Mayhem in Memphis as well. ‘My stories also appear in Low Down Dirty Vote VII, Stories Through the Ages: Baby Boomers Plus 2019,’ she says. We also learn that the online literary journal Backchannels published one of her stories in the spring and another story won second place in the online Short Storyland 2019 competition.
While becoming an author was not something the author had thought of in her childhood, she stresses that because she always possessed a vivid imagination, she could not but put pen to paper. ‘As many ideas constantly swim around my head, it is only natural for me to feel the only way to eliminate the thoughts is to write them down,’ she tells us.
Carrying gifts, comes the Santa;
He guffaws upon seeing us.
Riddling and giggling, he dances,
Illuded by the merry fuss.
Santa shakes the bag he carries,
Times each move ere catching a bus
Merry Christmas! He hoys cool gifts.
And says, ‘You shall grow happy thus.’
Shouts of elation now, no fuss.
Cyclical are storms of sadness
Starsheen parts the clouded skies
Eternal is the endless ocean
Fading are the tides
I see Him in the seed, the bough, the tree
I see Him in your smile, your cry, your pout
I see Him in scenes that are, that can’t be
Oft marvel do I at His mighty clout
He knows it all well but without a scout
The worlds exist so He may joy and fun
He wills it so rivers flood, there is drought
None but Him can make us perceive we’re one
I oft wonder how the ball of light and fire not once reels;
Moving with a wondrous flair, the Sun hardly seems hoary.
Oh! Behold the skewing rays of our majestic Sun that wheels!
She wrote the Christian superhero series entitled ‘Science, Meet God’ while being crippled for four years after having undergone knee surgery at the age of twenty four. ‘I was on the verge of paralysis before a doctor finally figured that slipping disks had severed my spinal cord in half. I had spinal surgery in 2014. The healing process was slow and painful, and I would like to thank Cliff for being the best nurse a girl could ever hope for,’ she shares with us.
In two eyes, we observe; in one eye we connect.
Two eyes make judgements that one eye rejects.
Two eyes show this one life, one eye shows the rest.
Two eyes watch the lesson; one eye takes the test.
Her second book entitled ‘A Storm of Magic’ happens to be a YA Fantasy. Speaking about the book, Ms Laino says, ‘Being brought back from the dead is an impressive trick, even for magician Darien Burron. Now he must try and use his sleight of hand to swindle modern-day witch, Mirah, to sign her power away, or end up a tormented demon in the afterlife. Meanwhile, sixteen-year-old Mirah is starting to lose control of her powers. After an incident at her aunt’s Witchery store, Mirah is sent to a secret coven to learn to control her abilities. While she is away, Mirah meets up with a soft-spoken clairvoyant, a brazen storm witch, and the creator of dark magic itself. The young woman must learn to trust in herself before she loses herself entirely to the darkness that hunts her.’
The sky will house us, I say with no doubt;
Of course, the Earth will take care of our feet.
But would that we dwelt within not but out
so we may make these planets our strong fleet.