Wednesday, December 2, 2009


Hey, All,

We had a good suggestion for a little extra fun at our "pot luck" Christmas meeting. If you would, bring a very inexpensive Christmas ornament to the party. I am not sure exactly what we are going to do with them but I am told it is a fun game we will play while enjoying all the goodies and friendship. It sounds like a fun idea to me and I hope it does for you too.

I still have not heard from a few of you but so far about 6 are confirmed. I would plan on no more than 10 as you decide what goodie you might bring. I sure hope to hear from those of you who have not responded yet, we miss you a lot and need you back soon.


Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Christmas Potluck

Hello, Ink Blots,

Can you believe it is Christmas time again? I know everyone is very busy with the holidays but I am hoping everyone can reserve one evening to meeting with your friends and fellow writers.

We had planned on meeting on the 11th but due to conflicts the Ag Center will not be available so we have changed the date to the 18th. This will be our only meeting in December and it will be our annual "pot luck"... pot luck meaning bring goodies, not major food. Some wonderful homemade snacks or something like that would be great. We always have such wonderful things to nibble on while we have our meeting. We will probably do more eating and enjoying each other's company than we will writing but we will do a bit of writing and talk about our up coming year. 2010 is going to be the best year The Community of Mercer County writers has ever had and we want to really get fired up for all the fun stuff we are going to be doing.

If you have not been with us for awhile... please, please try to come and share a beautiful night of Christmas.

I do ask that you RSVP as soon as possible so I can let everyone know how many we can expect so everyone has an idea of what and how much to bring.

We will meet at 6:30 at the Ag Center. I look forward to seeing each of you. If you have been writing, bring it and share it. If you have anything about Christmas written, bring that for sure.

I look forward to seeing you again and hearing from you soon. Our newest member Katerina is on a book tour in Bulgaria so she probably won't be back in time to join us but we will be thinking about her success.

See you soon,

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

My Life on MUTE

Take out my vocal cords,
Remove my voice box ,

go ahead press mute.

I'll mime my way around all of their stupidity.

Turn down the volume,
no subtitles or captions,
I'll mouth the solutions to our problems with my lips,
and never a sound to interrupt,
but kiss-
and Silence will overwhelm.

Go ahead-press mute on me,
turn off my voice and expect me lame.
in the quiet you will find.
my voice is.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Katerina Stoykova-Klemer

... Katerina Stoykova-Klemer's new chapbook - THE MOST - from Finishing Line Press, is now available for pre-order. The book will be released in March 2010.

Katerina is also the author of the bilingual poetry book, THE AIR AROUND THE BUTTERFLY. She is the host of ACCENTS - a Radio Show for Literature, Art and Culture. Listen to ACCENTS every Friday @ 2pm EST on WRFL 88.1 FM Lexington or stream live from

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Home for the Holidays

Dear Ink Blots and others,

The Community of Mercer County Writers has a full slate of things to do and I hope you can get started on some of them.

We have been invited to read during the Home for the Holidays event in downtown Harrodsburg on the weekend of November 27th and 28th ( I am not sure what times it will be but I am pretty sure it will be Satuday afternoon)

I would like to see us read new material that has something to do with the Christmas season.

A few topic suggestions I have are:
  1. The Best Christmas Tree Ever
  2. My Encounter with Santa (this does not have to be your 1st encounter, just any encounter)
  3. The Manger and Mary {My thought on this one is Mary and the manger having a conversation about their relationship. And it does not have to be Mary, it could be The lamb and the manger or the Shepherd and the manger. I think you get the idea... it would be an interesting thing to hear the perspective of the manger as it is associated with one of the other characters in the Nativity}
  4. Searching For The Star (this one is open to what your thought are not so much about the wise men searching but maybe your search or someone or something else's search)
  5. Candy Canes and Jam Cake

These are just a few of the suggestions I came up with, you get the idea I think... something about Christmas that is just a little different or an odd twist

We do not have a lot of time so it is up to you to write and prepare for the event. I would like to see a lot of you spark the creativity I know each of you have and come up with some really interesting pieces. The pieces can be poetry, short stories or even non-fiction... Whatever you want to write. I really do hope you can do something and be ready to read it during the event. We will be inside at Studio G on Main Street.

Some of us are now working on doing the play I wrote, "Nan's Diner" for this event as well. Several had asked if we could do it again this year and so we are. I am even going to play a part this year... won't that be a hoot. So if nothing else I hope you come watch me make a fool of myself on stage. The play will be on Saturday evening but I do not know what time yet.

So please plan to be a part of all of this. If you just cannot get something written plan on coming and supporting those who do... It is important for us as a group to support each other.

There are a lot more exciting things we have planned but I will tell you about them after the Christmas event.

I do need to know if you will try and write something to present so I have an idea about the time we will need to do the presentation. So PLEASE let me know as soon as you can.

You guys are the greatest and I am so proud to be a part of this group of great writers.

I look forward to hearing from you ASAP.


Monday, November 16, 2009

Home for the Holidays

Attention Ink Blots ... the Home for the Holidays weekend is coming up November 27th and 28th. This is a time for Harrodsburg to come together as a community and shop downtown Harrodsburg, enjoy carriage rides and other entertainment, plus much, much more!

The Community of Mercer County Writers will be reading at Goldie's Studio G sometime during this weekend - more details to follow. Tony would like for us to all be thinking about an "unusual" Christmas story to write. A few topics he has suggested include:
  • The Best Christmas Tree Ever
  • My Encounter with Santa
  • The Manger and Mary (or the lamb, or the Shepherd, etc)
  • Searching for the Star
  • Candy Canes and Jam Cake

These are just a few ideas, so don't be limited by the suggestions - come up with your own unusual tale.

It is Tony's plan to compile all these stories into a chapbook to have for sale during next year's Home for the Holidays.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Next Meeting

Hello, Ink Blots and friends,

We will be meeting at 7:00 (NOTE this change of time) this coming Friday at the Ag Center on US 127. There will be a lot of things to discuss and we will be doing some writing (hint it is Friday the 13th).

If you would like to bring some snacks let me know... If I get some response I will let you know so everyone does not bring something.

I had to change the time because I have to meet some folks after the Thriller presentation downtown. If you want to see the presentation come on down. I should be on time but could be running a little late... if I am just have some snacks and talk until I get there.

If you know someone who would like to join us for this meeting, bring them along because we are going to have a lot of fun and make some important plans for the coming year. I have some really exciting news to share.

Be thinking about some piece of writing you might want to write about Christmas. We have been asked to do a reading during the Holiday celebration downtown. If all goes well one or two of the plays we did last year might be done as well as maybe a couple that were not done last year... nothing in stone yet but certainly in the works.

Looking forward to seeing all of you. For those of you who cannot attend, we will miss you and I will send you an update on all the happening after the meeting...

Please let me know if you plan to attend.


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Arts Festival Poetry Contest

The Arts Council of Mercer County
Arts Festival Poetry Contest

Three Categories
1. Adult
2. High School Students
3. Middle School Students
(This includes ALL Home School Students)

Entrants may submit up to 4 poems

Any length is ok but the subject must be “Art”
Entry fees are:
$1.00 for one poem
$3.00 for four poems

October 12th, 2009

Winner will receive 5 copies of a chapbook of their poetry up to 20 pages. Entrants will be able to read some of their work at The Writer’s CafĂ© booth at the festival.

Entries and fees should be sent to The Arts Council of Mercer County, 235 Ashley Camp Rd. Harrodsburg, KY. 40330. Any questions should be sent to Tony Sexton at

Monday, September 21, 2009

Authors to Read

Harrodsburg poet Tony Sexton will be reading at the Terrapin Hill Festival on Saturaday, September 26th from 2 until 3. He will also be sharing this time slot with another Kentucky author, Ed McClanahan. Come on out to Terrapin Hill Farm this weekend and support these wonderful authors!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

The Memory Lives On

The Memory Lives On
By Bobbi Rightmyer

I was going through a rough spot in my life
in between jobs from birthing babies to elderly care.
I finally had the day off and after seeing my family off to school and work,
I settled in to enjoy the TODAY show.
No sooner did I have my nest made when the first plane hit the first tower.
Was it a horrible accident?
Had something gone terribly wrong?
Or were we under attack from a growing terror
we’ve kept on the back burner too long?
Bomb drills and survival skills raced through the edges of my mind
as I tried to comprehend what was going on.
Never one for telephone calls, I detested using the phone,
but I needed to have some answers
so I picked up the receiver to make my first call.
My hubby wasn’t quiet to work yet, but still on his long commute
and he turned on the radio to listen.
Still in shock, I was on the phone again with my soul sister Linda Loo,
when the next tower was hit.
What the hell is going on?
What do we do?
Why hasn’t the Emergency Broadcast System made an interruption –
they interrupt programming when the wind blows the wrong way?
Throughout the next hours I was glued with horror
to the images coming from the frosty screen.
box cutters,
terrorist attacks – how is this happening in the great USA?
And why is Bush Jr.,
our Commander in Chief,
reading a book upside down to the children all around?
Why doesn’t he do something – anything to make the horror stop?
Our lives will never be the same again, our freedom has been threatened.
I feel I dug a hole that day to bury myself away,
but all the pain and suffering in my personal life just no longer seems to compare.
And now it’s eight years later and the New York skyline remains ruptured –
our tribute to the terrorist,
by our lack of cohesive structure.

Monthly Meeting of Nomadic Ink

Here is a summary of the September meeting of Nomadic Ink, from Tony Sexton:

Attention Ink Blots

Here is an update you will want to take note of:

Beginning the 25th of September we will be meeting twice a month on the 2nd and 4th Friday of every month. Meeting will be at the Ag Center unless otherwise notified (Paula please check your calendar and see what conflicts we have) and the time will be 6:30 to @8:30. We felt that in order to make the meetings possible for everyone this would be the best plan, it also eliminates all the confusion of when and where we are going to meet. I hope everyone can make every meeting but I know that is dreaming but I hope everyone can make at least one meeting a month. We will try to have the first meeting in a workshop format which will give those working on something new a chance to try it out on the group before making too much revision. We will continue to have Jump Starts and exercises designed to keep us writing. The other meeting will be more like the regular meetings we have been having, more of a discussion about events we are working on or plans for other things going on. I hope we can go back to having a different moderator at least once a month to give a bit more variety to the meeting (I am sure you must be tired of my droneing on and on by now).

The revision workshop meeting on Tuesday nights at 7 at my house will continue for several more weeks and then we will incorporate it into our regular meetings. The only exception to this will be on Tuesday September the 22nd when we will take a van load of writers to the release party of Silas House's newest book. This will be at the Carnegie Center in Lexington and we will leave Harrodsburg between 5 and 5:30 pm and be back before 10. If you would like to go please let me know as soon as possible so if we need more transportation we can arrange that. I think leaving from the old CVS parking lot is best (that is where the library will be housed until the new one is built).

At last night's meeting we brainstormed some ideas for events next year. We have to have these planned before Oct. 1st so we can share them with the Arts Council of Mercer County so they can get them in the Tourist Commission's calendar. Some of the ideas were: Poetry Readings in the downtown park during the month of April which is Poetry Month, other reading events in the park during other months of the year (we are open to suggestions as to what and when if you have a good idea)... We would also like to host some sort of Book Fair with an auction of books donated by well known authors or items those authors might donate... several idea were tossed around and we are hoping you might have some input to that as well. I would also welcome any other ideas for events that you might come up with... we want to do something very outside of the box as far as a writing event... so get out of the box and give us some ideas.

We will be hosting a few other author reading at the Fudge Company but we have no way to schedule those a year in advance.

I almost have the Tee shirt design completed and if you want one or two please let me know. The shirts will be around $8.00 and we can do long sleeve or short sleeve so let me know which you would rather have and what size you would like. I will send you a copy of the design as soon as I have it complete but I need to give Tim and idea of how many we will want. Do you think we should order several to sell to folks outside the group?

I am sure I have forgotten something so if you were at the meeting please reply to all and fill the others in.

We sure do miss a lot of you who were once so excited about the group... if you are still hoping to be a part but things just aren't working out right now, please let us know (if you want a shirt, let me know) AND if you know some who do not have emails please pass this info on to them...or send me a snail mail address and I will try to mail them this message.

Thanks to all of you who have help build this group into something to be proud of.


Sunday, August 16, 2009

Book Launch

Congratulations to Tony Sexton and Earl P. Dean on your successful book launch/mixer yesterday at the Kentucky Fudge Company. Tony has just released his first book of poetry, "Scraps," and Earl has release a science fiction novella, "A Tailor Maiden's Secret."

Both of these books are available at Wasteland Press and Amazon.

Herschel McKinley - the MC (Photo by Bobbi Rightmyer)

Earl P. Dean (Photo by Cheryl Sexton)

Tony Sexton (Photo by Bobbi Rightmyer)

Earl P. Dean and Tony Sexton (Photo by Cheryl Sexton)

Saturday, August 8, 2009

I Am v.2

In my mind I am a woman of great beauty,
A passionate lover,
A breeze floating through the meadow…

I am the light rain on the plains,
I am the surf on the sand;
I am the water of the tide,
I am a shell in the ocean…

A breeching wave crashes into me and sends me sprawling onto the shore where I am collected in buckets and in the cloth of shirts and bathing suits. I collect in pockets and in tide pools dug by children. I am strung up and hung around the necks of friends, family, and lovers…

I am a gentle kiss,
I am a light touch that delights the skin,
I am a promise wrapped in a dazzling disguise.

In my mind I am a bit of sunlight,
A reflecting rainbow,
A nervous laugh.

I am the blush on excited cheeks,
I am the gap in braced teeth,
I am the smell of kind flowers,
I am the sweet summer rain,

I fall through sky and wind, winding down through the clouds and broad leaves of trees. I connect the earth and sky that never meet, and let the sky kiss the earth with her broad fingertips. I am the water of life; I am the messenger of the heavens…

I am the moonlight on the water,
A gull’s lonely call,
A bullfrog in the silence.

I am the smile on your lips,
I am the photograph in the frame,
I am the wind in the valley.

I am all the simple things we take for granted.
I am the kind life unnoticed but ever-changing.

I am the way the world begins at the end.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Full Moon Fever

(Photo by Jim Pankey "WildSpirit" - Jim's Photography can be found at Picasa and Fotothing)


Full moon fever,
On a Friday night;
Brings the crazies,
into the light.

Blinding light,
in the darkness prey;
Will steal the sight,
And light of day.

Be still my heart,
Locked away in love,
You're not so smart,
With powers' glove.

Give me a pass,
Just once would you please;
Leave me still on the grass,
And down low on my knees.

So werewolf in kind,
Gathered 'round in the wood;
Will each link their minds,
As they draw up their hoods.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

New Speaking Out! Writing Workshop

Speaking Out! Writing Workshop

Mercer County Senior High School

Thursdays at 6:30 pm
August 20th and 27th
September 17th and 24th
October 22nd and 29th
November 17th

For more information contact:
Roni Gilpin @ 859-319-3531
Betty Dean @ 859-583-6355

Monday, August 3, 2009

Book Release Party

Host: Nomadic Ink
Type: Party - Mixer
Date: Saturday, August 15, 2009
Time: 2:00pm - 5:00pm
Location: Kentucky Fudge Company
Main Street, Harrodsburg, Kentucky

The Community of Mercer County Writers - Nomadic Ink - is hosting a book release party to celebrate 2 books by Harrodsburg native authors. Earl Dean will be signing his new young adult book - A TAILOR MAIDEN'S SECRET - and Tony Sexton will be signing his new book of poetry - SCRAPS.

Everyone is encouraged to come out and support these wonderful authors. Books will be available for purchase.

Friday, July 24, 2009

My Angel

I fell into you a million times.
Cradled in your arms and surrounded with your light,
Your wings caressed my skin,
And with your kiss,
I Took flight,
With you,
my angel from the night,
Who gave me hope to love again,
I learned,
To fly.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Tony Sexton's Scraps

Congratulations, Tony Sexton, for the publication of your new book, SCRAPS. Tony is the leader of The Community of Mercer County Writers and has lead several writing workshops in the community.
Many writers have said they never knew when an idea or inspiration might hit them and I am no different. Often I find myself considering an idea with no means of jotting it down. Usually I have a pen but, more often than not, I don't have a notebook handy. The only solution, in these cases, is to use what ever I can find; a napkin, box top, grocery receipt or an envelope. The title of this first collection, Scraps, comes from this dilemma. I began writing in the fifth grade when is teacher, Miss Castle, gave me writing challenge using the word “compulsion”. Since then I has spent over 20 years writing, leading writing workshops, which are designed for all ages and experiences and trying to complete her assignment. I am a member of The Community of Mercer County Writers and president elect of The Kentucky State Poetry. You can find my writing in The Journal of Kentucky Studies, Jar and several magazines including Good Old Days. I live in Mercer County with my wonderful wife, Cheryl and their dog, Mercy.

SCRAPS is available from Amazon and Wasteland Press

Happy Birthday ...

... I just want to take a moment to wish my youngest daughter a


Christine Nicole was born on this date, 17 years ago at 9:10 in the morning. Even though she was 5 weeks early and only weighed 5 lbs. 10 oz., she has been the love of our life.

Happy Birthday, Sweetheart, we love you bunches!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Sylvia Davis

Just a reminder - Sylvia Davis will be reading from her new book, APPALACHIAN ANGELS, on Saturday, July 25th at 2pm at the Kentucky Fudge Company on Main Street. We hope everyone comes out to support this talented Kentucky author.


The driveway was filled with tables covered with trampolines from the weekend yard sale. I had expected Good Will to pick them up while I was at the doctor’s office so seeing them aggravated me because now I had to park at the curb in front of my house where some kid on a bicycle might bump it. I shut off the engine and glanced toward the front porch. Some raggedy looking black man was sitting on the step leaning on a dirty backpack and smoking a cigarette. When he saw me looking, he smiled a wide, upper front teeth-missing smile, lifted the hand holding the cigarette and waved. I didn’t wave back. I only got that much more aggravated and wondered who the vagabond looking man was and why he was acting so familiar with me. I got out of the car and slammed the door.

My day had been long and tiring and I was in no mood to deal with a begging, homeless man, no matter how much I sympathized with his plight. Then he spoke.

“Andy, that’s you isn’t it?”

I looked hard at him. The voice sounded familiar but it was from somewhere in my obscure past.

He went on speaking, “ I thought that was you the other day mowing the grass but I wasn’t sure.”

Then it hit me. I had worked with him several years ago at the water plant. “John?” I questioned.

“Yeah, you didn’t recognize me did you?”

I wasn’t happy to see him. Not that I disliked him but more because he brought back bitter memories of a phase in my life I had tried hard to forget. “Not until I heard your voice. You’ve lost some weight?”

“Yeah, and you grew a beard.”

“Still a rebel, even in my old age.” I was walking towards him and he stood up, stuck out his hand and I shook it. “It’s been awhile.”

“Twenty years almost.” He released his grip and I let go of his hand, which felt oily and warm. “I heard you moved to Georgia.”

I knew eventually he would get around to wanting to talk about the old days I had tried so hard to forget. “I was gone for a few years. Spent a couple on the beach but my health brought me back here.”

“Oh, Man, the beach, sounds like a pretty good life to me, you know.”

"It was.” We sat down on the top step of the porch. “So what’s up with you these days?” I asked.

“Just livin’, Man, you know, just livin’. Eight hours a day, one day to the next. It ain’t life, but it’s livin’. But it’s all good. What about you? Just moved in here, huh?”

“Yeah. How’d you know?”

“I work over there.” He put up his thumb like he was hitching a ride. The thumb pointed to a shopping plaza across the street from my back yard. “Flippin’ burgers, Monday through Friday, sometimes half a day on Saturday.”

“So you live around here?”

“On over the hill, pasted the fairgrounds in Hanks Apartments. Heck of a name, ain’t it, Hank’s?” He laughed. “I just cut through everybody’s yard to make the trip shorter.”

“Well, yeah, that would save a lot of time.”

“Yeah, but, you know, a trashy lookin’ black man, carrying a backpack ain’t always welcome in some folks backyard. But, so far no trouble except for a few dogs wantin’ a taste of me.”

I laughed, “Things don’t change much do they?”

“Only in your head.” He grinned that toothless smile again. To look at him you’d never know he was a college graduate who took a wrong turn early in life.

“Well, other than having a tendency to forget things, my head is in the same place it always was.”

“I like to think mine is on a little straighter than it used to be back then.” I was surprised he did not mention the problems he had at the plant.

“I’m glad to hear that, John.’

“Listen, if I know you, I figure you’d rather not talk about our years at the water plant?”

“Not one of my favorite subjects for sure. I am pretty much over that so you’re right, it is a topic I’d rather not dwell on.”

I figured so. But, you know, Man, I had to stop by for a few minutes.”

“It’s fine, John. We worked together, we were pretty good friends… worked together for a long time. We saw a lot of crap go down.”

“Well, that’s why I stopped by.”


“Yeah, they were so wrong lettin’ you go the way they did. They fired me for a good reason, my own fault, you know. But, you, Man, it was just wrong.”

“We’re both probably better off that they did.”

“I think so, but, like I said, I had to stop by and tell you… well, I’ve known a lot of people in my life, but you’re the most honest one I ever met.”
I felt my face redden.

“You taught me a lot and I don’t mean just about that damn plant. You taught me stuff I didn’t even realize for years after I left.”

I didn’t know what to say. I fumbled for words, “Well, I, well, I don’t know about that, we were just trying to survive. But, I do appreciate you saying it.”

He stood up, swung on the backpack and held out his hand again. “Well, I just wanted to tell you that, Man. I’ve waited a lot of years for the chance.” He reached into his shirt pocket, pulled out a pack of Marlboro Menthols and lit one up. “Thanks.”
I stood up, shook his hand and said, “You’re welcome, but I figure we taught each other a lot.”

“Gotta get goin’, gonna wash the Big Mac grease off of me and prop up my feet. What a life, huh?” He laughed again.

“Take care, John. Stop by again sometime if you want to.”

I just might do that.” He took a drag on the cigarette, blew out a cloud, turned and walked down my sidewalk. He never looked back.

I didn’t expect to see him again unless he was just walking down the street or though my backyard. I unlocked my front door and went inside.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Monthly Meeting

Just a reminder to all members of The Community of Mercer County Writers - our next scheduled montly meeting will be Friday, July 24th at 6:30 at the Kentucky Ag Heritage Center on Louisville Road.

We hope to see everyone there.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Public Reading

The Community of Mercer County Writers - Nomadic Ink - held a public reading on Sunday, July 12th. The following are a few photos of our members reading original works created during the Advanced Writers' Workshop held by Tony Sexton.

This is Tony Sexton, the group leader of Nomadic Ink and the instructor for the latest writing workshop.

Len Goodpaster

Shirley Cochran-Walls

Barnyard Queen from Hillbilly Zen

Charles Semones

Staci E. Hackney

And I can't believe I didn't get a photo of my own daughter, Christine Rightmyer, reading, so here is a photo from her graduation reading from the Governor's School of the Arts.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Monday's Untitled:

Have you ever loved so much,
that it hurt to be,
loved someone like you shouldn't have,
and lost the will to see,
but baby you've taken all of me,
now all i've got is you inside,
you've got me feeling things Ive never felt,
love i don't know what to do.
these things i thought weren't possible,
you feel so amazing beneath my fingertips
i never thought i could fall all over,
Ive fallen so much harder than Ive fallen before,
baby you've taken me away,
and i cant ever see myself coming back.
I loved watching you in my arms,
you smell so amazing when you sleep,
the texture of your skin beneath my fingertips,
your heart beneath my hand,
you don't know what you've done to me with just that.
i can still hear the sound of your breathing,
feel your rapid heartbeat on my skin,
you're just so surreal,
i cant believe you,
you're just amazing,
and i just cant let you go.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Escaping the Memories

Tennis sweatbands that smell like your wrists,
tender memories that taste like your kiss,
echoes of the songs you love to sing,
These are a few of my favorite things.
Dreams of your skin hot against mine,
My fingers aching for the hands they're longing to find,
cool air conditioning on fresh beads of sweat,
the look in your eyes as we watched the sun set,
teasing and playing,
i longed for your kiss,
waves and boogie boards you're sure to miss,
long talks through tears in the sand,
the moments when you took my hand,
these are the things stuck in my head.
The sound of your voice calling my name,
the way my skin will never be the same,
it still tingles with the last of your touch,
the bruises are fading from the falls and the scrapes,
My favorite memories are the ones i cant escape.

Thursday, July 2, 2009


(Photograph by Lynda Lehmann)


Reflections of my past flow freely through my mind
Happy childhood, miserable teenhood, skittish adulthood
All jumbled together in the melting pot of memories
Never really showing my past by outward means, but simmering slowly in my thoughts and dreams

Rippled memories like the ripple of waves
Skipping across the decades of time
Not unlike a skimming stone as it lights on spontaneous musings and perceptions
With no control over where the cognition begins and the flights of fancy end

Why is it older brains will always reflect the past
While newer brains are only interested in jetting to the future
Don't they know that time is fleeting and you should not wish it away
'Cause in the blink of an eye, the future is gone and all we're left with is the past

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Water Off a Duck's Back


If it walks like a duck and talks like a duck
It must be a duck

If it swims like a fish and breaths like a fish
It must be a fish

If it barks like a dog and chews like a dog
It must be a dog

If it meows like a cat and sleeps like a cat
It must be a cat

If it looks like a human and acts like a human
Never, ever believe they are a normal human

Humans can be
Sarcastically catty
Mean as a dog
Slippery as a fish
Clueless like a duck

Being a human can sometimes be underrated
Or very worthwhile and appreciated
Lonely, hollow, self-deprecating
Friendly, happy, and very loved

Too many humans worry
Too many stress
Instead of letting problems go
Like water off a duck's back

Sunday, June 21, 2009

The Wedding

Thanks for all the support from my fellow writers during the preparations for my daughter's wedding. I will only post one photo here, but if you would like to see more, check them out on my writing blog or my rants blog:

Friday, June 19, 2009

Temporary Insanity

Sorry guys, but I'm pleading temporary insanity for the rest of the weekend. If I don't see you guys Tuesday night at class, someone come looking for me - I may need you to bail me out of jail or cart me off to Eastern State.

Wedding, wedding, wedding, wedding ... bet you can't guess what's on my mind!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Sylvia Davis Is Coming to Town

Sylvia DeLee Davis will be reading in Harrodsburg on Saturday, July 25th at 2pm at the Kentucky Fudge Company. Please join us in welcoming this wonderful author to our hometown.

Sylvia is a seasoned writer whose works appear in numerous anthologies and journals. She is a graduate of Eastern Kentucky University and resides in Richmond, Kentucky where she is a teacher and tutor. Sylvia compiled Appalachian Angels after listening to friends tell of crossing over to the other side during a near-death experience (NDE), or being assisted by angels during emergency situations. An avid collector of books on NDE, Sylvia is convinced that angels do indeed reside in the hills and hollers of Appalachia. She trusts you will believe too.

Happy Grandpappy

I am not one to brag too much but since I am a new grandpa and it is sort of my first, I just had to do this post. One thing though, I will not leave it up too long (maybe a week) so everyone can get a look and then I will get back to the real stuff.
Her name is Lilianna Abree Ormond, she weighed 9 pounds 6 ounces and was 21 inches long. She and MaMa are doing great.
In the pic of me with her, she was less than 5 hours old and when I talked to here she just watched and listened. I hope you all don't mind my bragging just a little. By the way, in the bottom picture, she was about 20 minutes old. And, you should see here feet and fingers... they are really long... I will have to erase this because if she ever saw it she would hate me for telling you that.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Prayer To The Waning Moon

Prayer To The Waning Moon

Beautiful Sister,
As the alabaster warmth of your face
Fades in sleep,
Take this melancholy with you.
Let it dissipate
Like hurtful smoke,
In the jet black darkness of your dreams.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Normandi Ellis

Normandi Ellis - Kentucky author, Berea College teacher and Editor of Berea College Magazine - was the guest speaker at The Advanced Writer Workshop, lead by Tony Sexton on Tuesday, June 9, 2009 at the Mercer County Public Library. She offered the class a "jump start" - a prompt to help start the writing process - in addition to talking about the publishing aspect of writing. She also read several passages from two of her books.

For more information on Normandi Ellis you can visit her website here.

Friday, June 12, 2009

June Assignment

At our last meeting, Tony played a game of 20 questions with us. From out 20 answers he choice 3: 1.) Favorite character we have written about; 2.) Made-up name for a female character; and 3.) Made-up name for a male character. From these 3 names, our assignment is to write a story incorporating all 3 of the characters. The next meeting is scheduled for Friday, June 12, 6:30 at the Ag Center.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

An Evening with Normandi Ellis

The Advanced Writer Workshop - lead by Harrodsburg's own Tony Sexton - and The Community of Mercer County Writers will be hosting Normandi Ellis as our guest speaker on Tuesday, June 9, 2009 at 7pm at the Mercer County Public Library. It is very exciting to be hosting this wonderful Kentucky Writer.

Books by Normandi Ellis:

Dreams of Isis

Awakening Osiris

Feasts of Light

Fresh-fleshed Sisters

Sorrowful Mysteries and Other Stories

She is also the editor of the Berea College Magazine

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Barn Shadows

(Photo by Dan Felstead of Wood and Pixels Narratives)


The standing barn has absorbed the frequencies
Of passing memories and feelings gone by
Darkened with shadows of passing time
Or the communications of a earlier eon

The old oak planks are a testimony
Of the hardworking tobacco farmer's life
Permeated wood with fragrances not soon forgotten
The emotional scars like the many wood worm holes

So why is my life wrapped in the shadows
Like the claustrophobic lines on the barn
Instead of breaking free to a different life
Where laughter can chase the shadows away

The shadows help to conceal my presence
As I wait behind the scenes
Never quite comfortable in the role of a leader
A follower I'll always be

Will my life eventually calm down
Will I come to miss these times
But I don't want everything all sunshine and roses
Because the shadows are now my best friends

Friday, June 5, 2009

Eyesight is the First Thing to Go ...

... so, I have changed the font size on the blog. Even with my glasses, I'm having more and more trouble reading small print, so I made the change out of necessity.

If you think this is too large, please let me know and I can make it a tad smaller, or change it back to the original size.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Writers' Cafe Canceled

Due to the Kentucky Fudge Company being closed on Sunday, May 31st, this month's Writers' Cafe has been canceled.

The next scheduled reading of the Writers' Cafe is Sunday, June 28th at 2:00 pm.
The posting of Normandi coming to the workshop looks great. For all who are reading this, you are certainly invited to attend even if you are not involved in the workshop. Normandi is quiet a treat to listen to. Come listen and visit with her, you won't be sorry. If you are coming and have the time to let me know, it will help in preparing for the night's activities. Those who are in the workshop do not need to let me know, only those who are not part of the workshop.... looking forward to having lots of folks attend.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Welcome To Wonderland

Welcome dear Alice,
To the wonderland world,
Where the grass is soft,
And the air is cool,
Where paths to nowhere,
If nowhere you seek,
Are as plenty as paths to days of the week.
The people here,
Though queer,
Are fair,
Excluding the cat, the queen and the hare,
The doorknob, the caterpillar, the white rabbit as well.
Our Mad Hatter, he sits in his cool garden square,
At his table with odd kinds of mismatched chairs,
His cups are filled to the top-to the brink!
Half cups half filled-with two sugars to drink,
In celebration of an unbirthday they share,
Of the Mad Hatter and the March Hare.
The Cheshire cat awaits you with glee,
From his place atop the cold forest tree,
Contorted stripes appear one by one,
A disembodied grin and a riddle about sin,
He fades in echoing laughter.
The caterpillar that smokes and sways,
Of the hookah he knows his ways,
Mushrooms and riddles he leaves,
When size and proportion have left you stranded.
Though well she seems in temperament not,
The Queen of Roses red,
When she isn’t happy she yells “OFF WITH YOUR HEAD”,
Poor king of hers to sit and wait,
And please this mighty lady,
Whose court of cards has a job that’s hard,
Of painting her roses red.
So welcome dear Alice,
To the wonderland world,
Where the grass is soft,
And the air is cool,
Where paths to nowhere,
If nowhere you seek,
Are as plenty as paths to days of the week.
The people here,
Though queer,
Are fair,
Of the wonderland world that you seek,

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Unknown - Hallowed and Hushed

(This is the beginning of a creative non-fiction piece I'm working on based on a true story. In the late 1800s, an unknown young woman came to the Graham Springs Hotel in Harrodsburg, Kentucky. During the evenings grand ball, she danced all night with one man after another. Immediately after the last dance, the lady died in her partners arms. Her identity remains a mystery to this day.)

Unknown - Hallowed and Hushed be the place of the dead. Step Softly. Bow Head.

As she entered the Graham Springs Hotel, she self-consciously touched her dark hair. Mid-back length, she had it artfully pulled on top of her head with several ringlets of curls dangling like tendrils around her graceful neck.

Her alabaster complexion was deathly white, but not a sickly pallor of ill-health, just the markings of a gentle lady brought up to protect her skin from the sun. The apples of each cheek held the faint hue of a pink rosebud at dawn with only a tiny dimple marring the line of her left cheek.

Her eyes were hazel with tiny flecks of gold that glistened and reflected in sunlight or candlelight. Thick curly eyelashes gave her eyes a dreamy look of someone older than her years.

When had only checked into the hotel for one night, arriving unescorted on a coach from Lexington. She had only a small trunk and she was reluctant to let out of her sight. She paid her bill with Confederate bills and signed her name daintily in the thick ledger Mrs. E. W. Maclaine. They later learned this was a false name.

She appeared in the grand ballroom at precisely the stroke of nine o'clock, her pale green dress draping behind her like a foaming waterfall. She was instantly the center of attention, turning every young man's head.

She danced with each man in turn and would then start all over again, rarely stopping to catch her breath. She refused all overs for a glass of punch and never left the ballroom for a walk in the moonlit garden.

Just a few strokes after midnight, guest began making their way to their rooms. As the mystery girl's last dance partner gave her one last twirl, he was horrified to find the young woman dead.

All attempts to learn the true identity of Mrs. E. W. Maclaine were unsuccessful. After a week of searching, he unknown lady was laid to rest on the grounds of Harrodsburg Springs. The unknown tombstone still marks the grave.

Give me some honest critique

As you can see, I have posted the story I did not read at the meeting on Friday night. This is one of the stories I am working on for the book I am going to call "Snapshots" and I need your eyes.
If you would try to answer these questions for me:
1. What is the picture you get from this story?
2. What is hidden in the story that is not about going to the fair?
3. Is this story too predictable?
4. Is the dialogue believable?
5. What is your Very Honest opinion of the story? Give me details.

I am very serious about this book and each of you reading it can help me accomplish what I want to do if you give me a critical eye.
Thank you

By the way, I thought we had a good meeting Friday even though we did go a bit longer than usual... I promise that will not happen again.... You all are the greatest!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

The Octopus circa 1957

“What time we leavin’, Ma Ma?” Andy said sitting on the bottom step of the stairs.
“I’m almost ready, we’re gonna meet Gladys and Jolene at the front gate at six, so we have plenty of time.” Andy’s mother walked out of the bathroom, stopped to look at him and said, “My, don’t you look handsome.”
“I wanted to wear my blue shirt but I got it dirty and forgot to bring it downstairs.”
“Well, that one is just fine. It’s been a long time since we haven’t been to the fair in a long time have we?”
“Nope.” Actually this was the first time Andy could remember going anywhere with his mother since she started working the swing shift. They some times when to visit his grand parents on their farm where he usually spent most of his summer, but they never went any where fun.
“well, we will just have to make up for that tonight. We’ll have a lot of fun. Are any of your friends going to be at the fair tonight?”
Andy wondered if his mother was hoping there would be so she could go off with her friends. He hoped not. “I don’t know. Maybe Jerry if his mother will let him.”
The fairgrounds weren’t far from their home so they were able to walk. Andy could hear the rides running and the music playing. When they turned the corner of their street he could see how the midway was lit up even though the sun had not set. Andy could feel the excitement in the air.
“What do you want to ride tonight?”
“Well, maybe not everything. But the Tilt-a-Whirl for sure.”
His mother pointed to the front gate of the fairgrounds, “Oh, there is Jolene.”
Jolene was standing just outside the gate. Andy knew her because she came to visit his mother often.
“Well, you have a fine looking date tonight.” Jolene smiled at Andy.
“Isn’t he something?” His mother replied. “Says he wants to ride everything tonight.”
“Me too.” Jolene giggled. “Gladys will be here in a sec, I saw her come in but parking is tough tonight. I think the front is full.”
Andy saw the other woman walking along the fence and headed their way. “There she is.” He pointed towards her.
His mother waved and the woman waved back.
“Whew, I had to park all the way in the back. That is a long walk. Have you all been waiting long?” “Just got here.” Andy’s mother said.
“Well, come on,” Gladys said, “I need a Sno- cone. What about you, Andy, you need a Sno- cone or maybe some Cotton Candy?”
Andy smiled.
The four of them walked down the midway amid a barrage of clanking bells and barkers touting their goods and games. “Hey, Lady, come on over and win that boy a bear. Three balls for a quarter... come on..”
Andy’s mother ignored the man but Andy was fascinated by him watched him as they passed by. He was watching so close he almost tripped over a cable. Something about the man scared him. Andy took his mother’s hand.
“Look at tall these rides, Andy, do you think we can ride all of ‘em tonight?”
About that time they were passing one called The Octopus. It had seats a lot like the Tilt-a-Whirl but they were more enclosed. The difference was, this ride had long arms and when it was running the seats spun around and the arms went up and down in the air. It looked real scary to Andy.
“I don’t know if I want to ride that one or not.”
“Oh, sure you do.” His mother said, “It’s the best one they have.”
Andy frowned.
“Well get our Sno-cones and ride the Tilt-a-Whirl first.” His mother grinned and squeezed his hand.
They all sat at a picnic table and ate the Sno-cones while they watched all the people milling around. Many were headed into the grand stands to watch the horse show.
“I hope we have time to see some of the show.” Gladys said. “I really like the ones pulling the little carts.”
“Oh, yeah, me too,” said Jolene, “Do you like to watch the horses, Andy?”
“Yeah, I’d like to ride one of ‘em someday. Those with the carts, I mean”
Oh the way to their first ride, they passed by a tent where several women were standing on a stage and a man out front was shouting, “They wiggle, they giggle, they strut their stuff for just a dime you’ll get enough… come and see them perform.”
Andy looked at the women on the stage. His buddy, Jerry told him about this kind of show. Jerry’s dad called it a Hochie Cochie Show but Jerry wasn’t sure what that meant and Andy was afraid to ask.
The Tilt-a-Whirl was a lot of fun. Andy and his mother rode in one and Gladys and Jolene rode in another. Sometimes it seemed they would crash into each other and Andy’s mother would squeal. Andy would laugh and try to make the cart spin around.
When it was over, Andy’s mother said, “Ok, come on, Andy, let’s go ride The Octopus.”
“I don’t think I want to ride that one.”
“Oh, come on, Andy,” Jolene said, “We’re gonna ride everything tonight, right?” They bought the tickets but Andy still was not convinced he was going to ride.
“It’ll be fun, Andy; it’s just like the other one except it goes up in the air. You’ll love it, I promise.” Andy listened to his mother but still had doubts.
“Ok.” he finally agreed.
The man locked them in the car and gave them a spin. He did the same thing to everyone until all the cars were filled. Then he shouted, “Hang on, you’re going for the ride of your life.” And then he laughed.
It was slow at first and barely got off the ground. Andy held on to the bars so tight his knuckles were white. His mother knew he was scared so she didn’t make the car spin.
The ride picked up speed and Andy slid up next to his mother and the car began to spin. Now the ride was going faster and faster and the arms were going up and down, up and down. Andy’s heart raced.
“Ma Ma, I want off.”
“You can’t get off, Sweetheart, not until the ride is finished.”
“Please make them stop, Ma Ma.” Andy begged but his mother just grinned. Up and down, spinning around and around, around and around.
Andy caught a glimpse of the man on the ground and began hollering at him, “I want off, Mister, let me off.”
The ride just seemed to get faster and the man laughed harder.
“Please, Mister, Please.” Andy cried.
His mother tried to make the car quit spinning but since all their weight was on one side it wouldn’t stop.
Spinning and spinning, up and down, around and around, “Please, Mister, please.”
Finally the ride started slowing down and cam to a stop. It seemed like forever to Andy. Now, he wanted off and as far away as he could get. But they were the last to get released.
When the man unlocked the bar, he said to Andy, “Here wanna ride again?” and handed Andy a free ticket, then laughed again.
Andy didn’t take it; he just rushed to the gate leading back into the midway.
“Are you Ok, Son?”
“Yeah, I guess but that was way too scary.”
Jolene and Gladys came over and Jolene asked, “Did you all hear some kid screaming on that ride?”
Andy didn’t answer and his mother only said, “Let’s go see if we can win a bear and then see some of the horse show.
As the four walked off, Andy took his mother’s hand and said, “Maybe we’ll ride that again next year.”