Opening Comments from Bob
My ninth book, A Poetical Journey (all poetry), and the eighth, The Tao of Momentary Thoughts (combination of poetry, vignettes, and quotes), are enjoyable reads. They are available for order from Amazon.
My other books are available on Amazon.
This Issue: This issue begins Year 19 of the Poetical Journal. This month we are visiting the Big Island or as it is officially known, Hawaii. There are a third more pictures than usual. Enjoy them, but also please read the other content. The two poems are The Eternal Leaf and Dr. Paul Lam. The vignette gives a brief history regarding the PJ.
Subscriber Residences: PLEASE let me know if your state, providence, or country is not listed in the demographic section at the end. There currently are subscribers in 28 states, 3 provinces, and 13 countries. See complete list near at the newsletter.
Next Month: The next issue comes out on March 29, 2020. We return to our annual visit to Maui.
My Facebook account is again open for a time.
My books and products are purchasable online.
My work currently appears in nine books. All are offered for sale online. To order, click here..
PLEASE! Supporting the efforts of the Poetical Journal is greatly appreciated! Any amount of donation is appreciated. To support, click here.
To view the product page of other unique gifts, please click here.
Maui coastline on our way to the Big Island
Small beach near downtown Kona
Two Poems this Month
The Eternal Leaf
The leaf is eternal, deathless
no beginning and no end.
"How can that be?" you say,
"In the Spring it forms
and the Fall falls."
Alas, think deeper.
From the great descent
returning to the soil.
reabsorbed by the roots.
Over the months
from those who passed before.
But wait, what about
the faithful rakers
who gather the fallen
consuming them in fire.
Alas, the ashes
drift upwards and then downwards
the CO2 offering life
to the green below.
Eternal, deathless they be.
Comments: This poem speaks about life more than just the leaf analogy.
Dr. Paul Lam
From the persecution of Mao,
a young boy left the history of his youth
to create his own in the future to come.
Through Vietnam and eventually Australia
Paul began to leave his mark
upon lives of many.
Life was not easy
for this man of steel,
not yet tempered.
almost became the victor
until a surprising friend, his father-in-law,
showed him a new path
of the Supreme Ultimate Fist,
thus, forever changing his destiny
and those of others.
Though he became a doctor of renown
healing and teaching others,
tai chi was the medicine
that touched his body and soul.
Yes, gold and silver medals
adorned his neck
but another dream
became his passion.
“Spread the message
of health and discipline,
the benefits that Tai Chi Chuan
can bring to all.”
Despite naysayers and pessimists
certain that his vision
could reach the world.
Decades have passed
and many dreams
From the humble boy in China,
tens of thousands recognize his name.
Yet, despite a multitude of accolades,
what one word
describes this man?
“A Gentleman” in the truest sense
of that word.
Comments: You all know of my love for tai chi. Dr. Lam has played a crucial role in that inspiration.
A Leaf - Theme of the first poem
Beautiful flowering tree
Mokualkaua Church, Kona - Oldest church in Hawaii (1837)
Dr. Lam enjoying one of his favorite hobbies.
Hulihe'e Palace - Summer vacation home for Island royalty 1838-1914
A view during a Kona walk
'Akaka Falls on the Hilo side: This gorgeous falls is 420 ft. high.
A short 1/4 mile walk, steep in places, takes you there.
There were over 60,000 earthquakes during the 2018 eruption. Most were Levels 1 & 2. However, there were two
severe ones at Levels 5 and 6.
Place of Refuge National Park was a location in ancient Hawaii where violators of kapu (laws), which many
have resulted in execution, were allowed to be exonerated. Clockwise: Canoe House; Temple Model;
Fish Ponds; Overview (note the meeting house in the far background: Portion of the original wall – 18 ft. wide,
12 ft. tall, over 950 ft. long, all done by hand; and a rocky beach next in the Park.
Vignette this Month: Celebrating Eighteen Years - Beginning Year 19
I find it difficult to believe that eighteen years have passed since I sent out my first Poetical Journal. This issue begins our nineteenth year. At one time the newsletter had over 22,000 subscribers. Sadly, due to costs and internet rule changes, that number has drastically dropped. On the plus side, ninety-one per cent of those who currently subscribe have been with me for over fifteen years. Two of my youngest subscribers at the time are now in their thirties, both married, and one has children.
Over the years, the format has changed. The original biweekly newsletters were two pages an issue with no pictures. The current issues run eight plus pages with pictures playing a dominant role.
As mentioned in the vignette last year, I proudly can say that the newsletter has always come out on time despite open heart and major abdominal surgeries along with two near death experiences.
I have tried to create a newsletter that is upbeat based on the premise that much of our news today is negative and disheartening. However, as a poet, I would be failing my role if I didn't write about the bigger issues facing all of us in life.
Another principle I have held is to never spam or inundate subscribers with unsolicited emails.
One of the great joys is to receive subscriber emails and be able to personally respond to them. Gratefully, some readers have become close internet friends.
There is much more I could say but will end a "Big Thank You" for your ongoing support.
If you have a guest vignette you would like to submit, please do so. Not only will I enjoy reading it, but if agreeable with you and space permitting, I will print it in a future issue. The vignette should be written in paragraph form and relate a personal story or event. It should fit the overall tenor of this newsletter. Ideally, it should not exceed twenty lines. Please send to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Green sea turtles are found throughout the Islands.
Kealakekua Bay (Cook's Bay) where the famous sailing navigator met his demise. Note the small memorial
on shore in his honor.
Yes, there is snow in Hawaii. Pictured is the volcano, Mauna Loa, one of five volcanoes that formed the Big Island
There are many recs I could give, but these are my favorites.
.........Please take a look at the gift page.
Holiday Inn Express, Kona: A bit pricey but not unusual for Hawaii.
Our stay at the Kona Holiday Inn was wonderful. From the moment
we checked in and were greeted by the friendly, efficient, outgoing
receptionist; to the well-maintained room; to the outstanding breakfast;
and finally to the centralized location in downtown Kona, this hotel
more than met all of our requirements.
Splashers, Kona: An excellent downtown restaurant, superb seafood.
Quinn's, Kona: This small restaurant is next to Splashers.
Superb seafood, most freshly caught that day. The filet
are reasonably priced and delectable.
Chris with Kapohokine Adventure Tours is the BEST tour
guide I have ever listened to. Full of comprehensive knowledge
(a walking encyclopedia), personable, and a deliverer of a multitude
"The flower is not concerned about tomorrow.
It doesn't plan.
It doesn't worry about death.
Nor does it make effort to smell beautifully.
The flower teaches being–Being what one is." - Wu Hsin
"Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens." - Carl Jung
"Go out and do something. It isn't your room that's a prison, it's yourself.” - Sylvia Plath
"Meditation is when you sit down and do nothing. Poetry is when sit down and do something." - Norman Fischer (You can see that I would like this one though I don't totally agree.)
Grazing land of the Parker Ranch, one of the largest in the U.S. A favorite place of ours!
Episcopal church found in the small community of Kapa'au
Bit of Humor
A bit of laughter is healthy for the soul
A man bought a mousetrap. When he brought it home, he discovered that he had no cheese to bait it with. So he found a picture of some cheese and put the picture in the trap.
The next morning he went to the trap to see if it had caught anything. The picture of the cheese was gone. In its place was a picture of a mouse.
Compliments of Joke a Day
One of two painted churches on the island, built in the 1800s
From the flower the Kona coffee seed is formed. Kona coffee receives its name from the region in which it is grown.
We have made four previous trips to the Big Island but never realized that this jewel existed. What a treat! Below is the infinity
pool that awaits you at the bottom of the garden trek. So relaxing to watch as you sip your free coffee (A man-made infinity pool is a
body of water that at certain angles makes you think it goes on forever.)
Above is Hapuna Beach, often considered one of the prettiest in the U.S. It was very crowded that day.
Bellow is Wawaloli Beach just outside of Kona. Definitely not crowded. A break wall protects the swimmers.
Tai Chi Corner
Regular readers of this newsletter know that tai chi plays an important role in my life. Hence,
occasional pictures will appear in this section.
Enjoying a bit of tai chi social time.
Doing Yang 24 in the water at Wawaloli Beach near Kona, Big Island
If you have comments, recommendations, or suggestions for the PJ, please e-mail them to email@example.com. While I often cannot print everyone's, I personally respond to all. (When editing the comments for publication, I often eliminate the paragraphing to save space.) .
". . . By the way, I always enjoy seeing your photos as well. Really nice work!" - Don from AK (Ed.: Many thanks!)
I also received many good wishes for a Happy New Year.
General: JJG wrote: I've read Bob's "To the End of Time" trilogy twice, each time gaining deep and deeper insights into the human condition. The three small volumes hold their own as good stories but also provide a unique glimpse into a new religious paradigm. Would that it could come to be.
Specific Book: To the End of Time and Back: An Epic Journey
David from Utah: "The new novel, To the End of Time and Back is a skillful account of two lovers on an 'Epic Journey,' racing through time and history to learn life-changing truths. Their spectral mentor, Arundel, sends them through difficult travels, but their relationship endures and remains strong despite physical, and psychological stress. Powerful emotions such as fear, anger and happiness, combine with lust, pain and sexuality to help them learn. Written in verse form, the story is an epic poem, painted to portray the duality of mankind throughout dimensions of human history that is sometimes cruel and horrific. The reader will come to know and understand what is being described and will certainly enjoy the stimulating elegance of the story and the philosophy. A thoroughly enjoyable read that is certain to make you think."
Jim from Mt. Vernon: "I finished your book!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It was much easier to follow by having the whole thing in front of me, and reading as much as I wanted at a time. I felt pretty weary after bouncing around in time for many hundreds of years, but I was relieved to know that at least part of the world survived 'Armageddon'. What a feat you have performed."
Art from Park City, UT: "I wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed your latest book To the End of Time and Back. When I bought the book I had no idea what to expect. Once I started reading it, I didn't want to put it down. I had fun reading it from A to Z and everything in between."
Bobbie from Texas: "Your book touched places deep within my soul. I could read it over and over again, Bob. Job Well Done!"
Kimberly from Ohio: "Well, Bob! I am rather blown away by your book. Finished it yesterday, and it only took four days, which means I was intrigued and wanted to know how the book ends. I'm a slow, deep reader and since my profession is writing and editing, I edit continuously as I read. Can't help it! But this book was worth dropping everything for and reading to the end. I admit to cynicism about your claim that it would change me, and I don't know that it has just yet but it won't be leaving my heart and head for a long time, and change could happen. I'm impressed that the book actually lived up to your claims for it. . . . I'm intrigued by this book because it rings so true, and I am therefore tempted to believe you actually were given the gift of this dictation. But if not and this is fiction, you have written one hell of a book, masquerading amazingly as non-fiction ... which is indeed one of the goals of fiction."
An Ohio Reader: "WOW! WOW! WOW! I read it in one sitting and found so many things you wrote about 'true' for what I know and feel about past lives I've lived. Actually, the chapter about the Holocaust was something I couldn't bear to read–too sad and painful. (I've always felt that way about that period of history.) . . . it was very well done, Bob. Just beautifully done. I'm looking for the movie. . . I'm sure others will feel connected to this book just as I did. AMAZING. Just AMAZING. I couldn't put it down. There was so much anticipation with each chapter it hooked me from the very beginning. . ."
Reader from Arizona: "I read your book a couple weeks ago. You are lucky we don't live close enough for me to call you to discuss it! It was interesting and easy to read. I liked the format. It reminded me of Many Masters, Many Lives by Brian L. Weiss (which was not that quick to read). Have you read that? . . . Anyway, kudos on the book -- on all your books. . ."
A Reader: "Your newest release takes the reader to places deep within. It makes one ponder all things about life itself. Many authors have written about reincarnation, but yours goes deeper. Through an eternal relationship between two souls, you describe all the human emotions one can feel. The book takes you to historical times and places around the globe, making you feel as if you are part of the beautiful relationship of A~ and Z~. After reading, they will become a part of you."
Specific Book: Adelyn: An Epic Journey:
Ohio Reader: "In his book, Adelyn: An Epic Journey, Bob navigates the reader through a challenging journey in the time space continuum while exposing both the weaknesses and strengths of humanity. As Adelyn is exposed to the infinite love of The Source, the reader is challenged to understand how personal beliefs and actions often have more to do with cultural rather than spiritual influences. In a time and world filled with political anger and personal indulgences reading Adelyn offers the open-minded promise. It would make a great book study."
Specific Book: The Tao of Momentary Thoughts
Doug from Ohio: ". . . I was not prepared for page 116 Should have been because of the extremely personal nature of the entire book. Please understand that the unusual length of time to finish your book (especially for a binge reader like me) was because it screamed to be read thoughtfully in increments. For me that was 10-15 pages every weekend, often in quiet . . .Thank you for "putting pen to paper" and sharing your soul. Those of us who have followed Poetical Journeys will recognize much of the content. Those of us who have been fortunate enough to share part of your journey really feel a part of it."
Charles from Park City: "Hi Bob….I just picked up your The Tao of Momentary Thoughts. It’s wonderful . . I love your book."
Ed from Seattle: The Tao of Momentary Thoughts: "I was smiling all the way through the reading . . .I think I will reread it again during the next week. . ."
States - AK, AR, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DE, FL, HI, IA, IL, IN, KS, MI, NC, ND, NY, OH, OR, SC, TN, TX, UT, VA, VT, WA, WV, and WI
Canadian Provinces - BC, ON, and QC;
Countries - Albania, Australia, Belgium, Canada, England, Germany, Ireland, New Zealand, Norway, Turkey, UK, U.S., and Venezuela.
........Changes in this section will be updated each month.
If your state, province, or country is not mentioned, please let me know.
To read some of the back issues of the PJ, go to here.
The next issue will go out on Sunday, March 29, 2020.
Until next time - joy and peace,
P.O. Box 319
Midway, UT 84049