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Scribblings and scrawls of a hopeless romantic soul

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Writer’s Quote Wednesday – THUG LIFE

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“Sometimes you can do everything right and things will still go wrong. The key is to never stop doing right.”

Angie Thomas, The Hate U Give

The Hate U Give Little Infants Fucks Everyone.

Angie Thomas’ novel revolves around this redefined meaning of THUG LIFE by Tupac Shakur, popularly known as 2Pac.

It follows 16-year-old Starr Carter whose uneasy balance between her poor neighborhood and her fancy suburban school is shattered when she witnesses the shooting of her best friend at the hands of a police officer. His name is Khalil, but the world calls him a thug. Everyone wants to know what went down that night. But Starr’s decision to stay silent or to speak comes with a risk for her people and her life.

Some people snicker at the thought of reading books under the young adult genre. They have this stereotyped belief that YA novels are shallow, sappy and superficial. They rarely see it as an avenue for discussing socio-political issues. But Angie Thomas proves these people wrong.

Without mincing her words, she delves into the most delicate and controversial subjects in America and the world today: racism, oppression, privilege and broken justice system. The book is thought-provoking without being preachy. It gave me different perspectives to look into. It made me introspect on what I have done and what I would do when faced with these issues. Other than posting about the hashtags and signing every petition there is, do I have it in me to act against racism, oppression or injustice?

In the end, this novel goes to warn the society that what it gives (hate/violence/injustice) to little infants (the poor/minority/less fortunate) will always come to haunt them. The THUG LIFE cycle continues…

Writer’s Quote Wednesday – Iron and Ironies

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Today we are surrounded by man and his creations. Man is inescapable, everywhere on the globe, and nature is a fantasy, a dream of the past, long gone.

Michael Crichton, Congo

My first foray into the written world of Michael Crichton was Congo. James, who loves the man as much as Dan Brown, never missed to mention his works whenever we talk about books. So I guess this is where curiosity killed the cat but satisfaction brought it back comes in.

The 1980 sci-fi novel centers on an expedition searching for rare blue diamonds and investigating the mysterious deaths of a previous expedition in the dense tropical rainforest of the Congo. At first I was worried that I’d be stuck in the complicated science and technical jargon but as it turns out, Crichton is a great de-jargonizer. I found myself immediately engaged in the story that capsulized science, history, and geography in each and every page.

Which brings me to this week’s WQW, Iron and Ironies. Congo left me emotionally, mentally and morally disturbed. In a simple story it raised provocative questions that I found hard to answer.

To what extent is animal cruelty? Is it limited to performing experiments/animal research? How about throwing lobsters on a boiling pot? Sticking pigs on bamboo poles? Exterminating rats? Do ALL animals have rights or just a selected few? Does man get to give them the reason to stay alive as a species?

These questions led me to reflect on our deeply ingrained habit of meat eating, on the equality among animals, and man’s idea of speciesism. I know there are multiple sides to these multifaceted issues and I would love to hear a thing or two from you. 🙂

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Writer’s Quote Wednesday – We need to be bothered

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There is, I assume most of you would agree, a long list of reasons why physical copies of books are better than their eBook counterparts. However, not everyone can bare the temptation for too long. A peak at a sentence that reads, IT WAS A PLEASURE TO BURN, could lead you to the very last page. And that’s what happened. I read Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 online.

This classic dystopia will take you to a time when books are banned and burned. In Guy Montag’s world, lives are dominated by televisions and literature is on the brink of extinction. Books and freethinkers are burned without a second thought. The storyline is good enough that it could stir the minds of many, but perhaps I was looking for more. More hard-hitting satire, more stimulation. Maybe a stronger revolt.

Nonetheless, it’s still a commendable piece of writing. This quote, for one, is very timely.

“We need not to be let alone. We need to be really bothered once in a while. How long is it since you were really bothered? About something important, about something real?”

Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451

With all the happenings in different corners of the world — be it political, moral or environmental concerns — we really need to be bothered.

Share Your World – Introspections

So, I’ve decided to join the fun at Melanie’s Share Your World Challenge. Here’s for the first week of July.


Would (or do) you stop to help (presumably) stranded folks by the side of the road?

As an empath in nature, I would. Of course this does not mean that I don’t feel a tinge of fear or distrust, but I still want to believe that there is goodness in each of us. That, despite all the negativities, people can be kind to one another.

Do you think the world is less mannerly today than in past times OR are we just more touchy and manners are as they’ve always been?

Truth is I’m morally scarred. I would not zoom out to the rest of the world because even just the current situation of the people here in my country, the Philippines, is enough to trigger my cynicism. There is a prevalent disrespect for women and much more disregard for life in general. All these are led by none other than the head of the state. His brand as a populist leader has enticed many Filipinos. Whatever he says, believes or does, people will follow. His rape jokes ripple throughout the country and his bloody war ensues at the expense of the poor.

The Philippines has gambled for an actual medicine-man to cure the nation but I fear that we might have taken the wrong prescription.

What happens if you’re scared half to death, TWICE?
HA! I wouldn’t even try to do the math but I’d probably end up doing the first thing I always do when something scares me: freeze.

If ALL the world’s a stage, where does the audience sit?
This reminds me of a piece I wrote one the first Monday of July a year ago. Maybe life is one big stage, maybe it isn’t. But one thing is for sure, we all have a part to play. The audience don’t just get to sit.

Share your thankful comments here. It’s a gorgeous day most places, so celebrate!

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I’m grateful to God for surrounding me with beautiful people who keep me anchored to life. My family, for being my strength and motivation; my friends, for reminding me that the beauty of life can also be found in people; and the boyfriend, for sticking through my anxieties, mood swings and existential days.

I’m grateful for the comfort I find in words whenever I read or write. To my books, for taking me to different worlds; and to blogosphere, for allowing me to have my own little world. As most of my friends here in WordPress know, I haven’t been writing much — by writing I don’t mean blogging about my escapades out in nature. What I mean is gone are daily poems and flash fictions.

This is why I am also grateful to Melanie for this prompt. SYW for me is a chance to introspect. It allows me to get in touch with my inner self and my muse. Who knows, one day, writing may come easy. 🙂

In a quandary

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She sails away in dreams and books
Finds refuge in every empty nooks
But when she saw the babbling brook
It showed her what she overlooked

Though she finds refuge in empty nooks
There is more to life than a storybook
And she finally saw what she overlooked
A laughter, a smile, come take a look

There is more to life than a storybook
More to boring likes and posts on Facebook
A laughter, a smile, come take a look
The mountains wait, lay down your books

More to boring likes and posts on Facebook
More to sailing away in dreams and books
The mountains wait, lay down your books
And heed the call of the babbling brook
MS

 

 


In response to dVerse’s Poetics: your poetic hum hosted by Gina who introduced us to the Tanpura Principle in writing (the idea that much of writing occurs while doing something else). What is the poetic hum in your life? What hums in the background of your life that inspires you as you unconsciously listen while you work and live? Is the drone always there or do you have to cultivate the inspiration?

As I have found my passion and profession in writing, work does not take much of a toll. But if there is one thing that made me live a dual life, it is the happiness I found in nature. On most days I am torn between slouching on the bed with a book and putting on my bag to explore the outdoors. Sometimes, the book wins. Sometimes, the mountains. It’s like being torn between two lovers. 

Also, linking this up to Poetry Forms – The Pantoum. Other than Quadrille and Haibun, I haven’t written a piece with a poetry form. This is my first with Pantoum. 🙂

Head over here to join the prompt!

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Finding Simple Joy: A Visit to AO Farm

January was a month for me-time, poetry, and crafts. In the past weeks, I have gone to places but have missed a lot of pages. Hence, I made a promise to laze around with muse.

But, despite the perks of solitude, some things are hard to resist. After an incessant request by Shiela, whose feet are giddy to get back on the trails, we headed to the mountains with Jovy.

Tres Marias out to be one with nature!
2 of 20 Spartan 😀

Continue reading “Finding Simple Joy: A Visit to AO Farm”

Realms

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Imagine a vast realm, still and undisturbed, resting on the shelves as books. Each book has a story to tell— a life seen in vivid imagery or told in detailed intricacies. A world of history or fantasy, victory or defeat, research or discovery, questions or answers.

I delight in hopping from one realm to another. Some world I explore in a day while others took longer. But the world I’m in today is quite… puzzling. I set off a journey to the pages filled with outlines of shapes in various sizes.

Then I realize, some realms are not for me.


In response to this week’s Friday Fictioneers prompt. Friday Fictioneers is a weekly writing challenge hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields where a photo is used as a prompt for a hundred-word piece of fiction. Thank you!

The photo prompt, a courtesy of Kent Bonham, reminds me of logic shapes and puzzles. Once, I tried to read a book about it back in collage, I ended up staring blankly at the pages. Blame my left side of the brain, please. Nonetheless, I had to read it to pass an exam. LOL. Some memories… ^^

Enjoy more stories here:

Stay: A letter to John

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© shirleymaya.com

Dear John
Love and Misadventure
Pride and Prejudice
Angels and Demons
Lock and Key
This is What Happy Looks Like
A Catastrophic History of You and Me
Unravel Me
Ignite Me
Shatter Me
I Wrote This For You
For One More Day
Every Day
Stay With Me


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I just got back from an awesome out-of-town weekend with friends. YAY! So for the late submission, here’s a little something for Days 9 & 10 of NaPoWriMo. Good  morning! 🙂

Day 9: Today, I challenge you to write a poem that includes a line that you’re afraid to write. This might be because it expresses something very personal that makes you uncomfortable;  something that you’re genuinely a little scared to say.

Day 10: Today’s prompt comes to us from Lillian Hallberg. She challenges us to write a “book spine” poem.

A Letter to a New-found Love

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© ertacaltinoz

Dear George R.R. Martin,

How you swept me away with your saga
I cringed to the deaths and gasped to drama
Engrossed— I breathed the song of ice and fire
It’s your world I crave; your words I desire

In my heart grew a massive gratitude
In fascination, you had me all glued
For the ride I took in the game of thrones
I slowly paced to flirt with the unknown

You took the chill higher in the clash of kings
I watched you in awe as you played the strings
A storm of swords set on smoldering heat
In your gripping tales, I rested my heartbeat

Do throw those pessimists— a feast for crows
I live every page; in each leaf time slows
Savor delight and dance with the dragons
Sing with the knights and travel in wagons

Will the dream of spring be a startling end?
My words are not enough to a tale well-penned
Will the winds of winter blow us away?
You were writing life’s metaphor, not just fantasy.

Your newest fangirl,
Maria ❤

Poetry Form:  Quatrain


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DAY 3:  Today, let’s turn our vision outward, and write fan letters. I challenge you to write a poem in the form of a fan letter to a celebrity. Now, this could be a celebrity from long ago, and needn’t be an actor or singer (though it could be).  

George R.R. Martin is an American novelist and short story writer in the fantasy, horror, and science fiction genres, a screenwriter, and television producer. He is the man behind the latest addition to my favorites, A Song of Ice and Fire.

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screenrant.com

Read more 2016 NaPoWriMo entries here!

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