|Product dimensions:||5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.73(d)|
About the Author
BJ credits her parents, John and Margaret Karr, for creating a literary environment where she could grow and learn. Yearly birthday memoir letters composed for other family members, anniversary letters expressing deep sentiments and/or humor, diaries holding philosophies, essays regarding life, occasions for poetic musings, and many opportunities for oral discussions, storytelling, and so on are some enduring memories for BJ. "I've been writing as a means of expression since I was a child," she reflects.
"That's what writers do. We write about what inspires us, always taking mental notes as we observe and categorize life into its myriad possibilities for others and ourselves. We inspire each other with our words, pictures, paintings and music - whatever artistic form gives voice to our emotional/spiritual selves - presenting them as a gift to the world."
BJ continues to grow and learn professionally by subscribing to Poets & Writers, attending workshops and courses affiliated with Grub Street in Boston and The Loft in Sherborn, and participating in writers' roundtables. In addition, she holds a degree as a certified Master Reiki Shamballa Instructor, practicing other religious modalities as they introduce themselves along the way.
In the future, BJ intends to write children's literary picture books, thematic poetry anthologies, flash fiction collections, and snapshot memoirs. She recently co-wrote a fantasy picture book with her grandson, Austin, and is anxious to publish it as a second-third-grade guided reading book.
Read an Excerpt
If only it could be for all time ...
I am sorry for all that has happened,
for all that will happen in the name of justice.
Will humankind ever learn to compromise, give in?
Cannot God intercede?
Or is it all part of the greater plan?
The greater blueprint,
with sinewy threads,
binds us all in the end to Him.
Some days I find it hard to give my soul up to Him.
Still trying to control that which I cannot.
Yearning for that ever-elusive peace.
It comes as a pulse,
lurking behind my eyes, pounding in a steady rhythm.
I tire of it all.
The expectations I put on myself.
They are there when I slumber.
Again when I rise,
slowly emerging through a blurry dream state,
trying to refocus,
rethink my paths.
I cannot shirk my duties but give voice otherwise to those who will listen to the steady complaining rhythms echoing through my soul.
Light switches go on and off in my ethereal brain.
Dysfunction rules the nest.
Discordant energies take over where feeble solace has resided.
There is nothing left but pity.
The more I search for a peaceful haven,
the harder the journey's climb,
attracting negative field forces to fill the holes exposed between the shorted emotional circuitry of my unbridled mind/self.
Where is the control panel?
I lost it on some quest for undeceived redemption that knew long before I that the payment was overdue;
a tardy assignment unrealized even though contracted,
the time having run out.
A disconnected exchange sways like a leery black cat's tail,
sweeping back and forth over the same blasted issue,
wary avoidance disguised in its deceptive shadowy garb,
a decisive slap in the face.
These light switches will never function as long as I continue to eject the broken records left lying out in the open for all to unfavorably discern.
My lineage is distrustful of another contract stifled by ineptness,
and rightly so, I say, rightly so ...
Fly Away Home
Sometimes I feel I need to fly away from all the worldly cares and woes.
Spread my wings,
leave it all behind.
Here, underneath my blanket of rest,
I can already sense the peace.
But then my eyes open,
and I am still here,
some unfinished business my soul must need to do.
But oh, how I wish I could just spread my wings and fly away home.
Who has been traumatized more than the other?
It is the universal question.
Is the murderer's heart,
hardened by years of tortured silence,
any less the victim than the one lying prone at his feet,
an innocent participant in his demise,
open and bare for all to see and judge,
all of us who have been the abusers as well as the abused?
Who is really to blame along these interwoven tales of woe?
The universe weeps for timely relief,
weary of repeated patterns of sorrow.
Anger coiled for another strike in another time.
In or Out?
Are you in or out?
I ask myself this question whenever I feel the fear well up inside me,
taking over my sense of uncertain self.
It is a task I do not relish,
answering that perennial question we all ask ourselves at one time or another.
Are you in or out?
I hear it reverberate down the misguided paths of my past adventures,
left upon some hillside for immediate reflection.
It is a task I readily avoid,
shirking the work required to find that answer within my defensive self.
Are you in or out?
I'm tired of this gnawing interrogation presented by self to self.
It may be time to take it on full force,
a risk worth the soul's complaints.
Shades of gaseous emissions lodged in my sore throat.
Leftover lies I've secretly shared with my vulnerable self emerge through the shadows of another time, another place,
when I wasn't aware of the rudimentary ramifications of not having taken paths,
traversing the forked roads seen ahead, stretches of time unfolding their clutched arms outlined in foggy, yet clear, mists.
I can find my way now without blinking.
No use looking back at what has been.
For it has become apparent that I've wasted lifetimes stuck in insecurity and invasive doubt that has multiplied tenfold,
leaving me gasping for my next breath of fresh air.
I cough up ancient notions that have held me prisoner,
phlegm remnants of what was ...
food allergies symptomatic of sour, indigestible life,
orts of submission, guilt,
low self-esteem, angst too difficult to swallow in this new time of awakening.
My totem hawk glides above,
welcoming this new voice,
dawning amid the contractions of an overworked esophagus,
releasing all the sludge that should have been discharged a long time ago.
The endoscopy performed,
an operation by angelic surgeons,
sent to rescue me from ego's thickly interwoven patterns implanted in a dysfunctional brain wave grid that no longer serves my purpose.
Old, ponderous ideas lift,
filtered through sunlit rays of new sifted knowing.
Gone in an instant,
I am clear at last.
I shriek at the universe,
proclaiming myself to anyone who will listen.
I am free at last.
Air, fresh air;
The smell of it takes my breath away.
I can never seem to get enough of it.
I am a caged animal when I am isolated inside some cave of my own making.
Lost and alone,
I scream to cut the bars that bind me in.
Allow me to flee this nest of humming waxed bees,
trapped by a queen's commands.
I burst through the dark holes out into the sunshine's rays,
spiraling thoughts of light informed by Higher Sources that need no reassurances.
"Help me," I shout,
piercing the barriers of my own sealed walls.
Let me find the core of my own being's purpose and set it free to celestial heavens.
Set it free to roam in the wind that swirls around in whirls of fragmented thoughts I created merely to sabotage self.
Unravel the threads of the puzzles,
intersected pieces of brain matter.
Left unattended, I will revert to what I have created, infiltrated thoughts permeating my inner mind-set.
Help me to set them free.
I will live again in the structure of peace –
peace, gratitude, and love.
Nervous energy chats across my mind like a bale of hay, thick yellow matter caught in the muddy stall of an ancient barn.
Reflections of acute uneasiness rest in these steamy mirrors.
The ones I thought I'd left behind on some forgotten horizon of unresolved issues. But here they are again in all their tainted glory,
speaking quite loudly through my inner ear,
demanding resolutions before I can move on.
I suppose I should address these hidden vows,
agendas that cloud my now.
If not, I'll surely be hunted down relentlessly,
pursued with forceful vengeance until I make peace within myself.
I may not know the exact sources of their blaring calls for balance,
but I do sense their underlying,
hostile, pervasive natures.
A complete metamorphosis is in order; of that I am certain.
This nervous energy that chats across my mind like a bale of hay,
thick yellow matter caught in the muddy stall of an ancient barn.
And so I have an interesting hole that I've created for myself.
When did I become the "bad" person
– the "bad"
mother, "bad" wife,
Was it when I didn't live up to someone's expectations?
Or is it me,
still trying to find out who I am in all these roles?
Some measure of self-respect without judgment is in order,
some dignity restored to my messy life.
I need to collapse this negative self-image hole and get out of the here into the now;
burst the bubble.
Ducking in and out of self-imposed covers,
she faces herself and then turns away in order to hide from her frozen fear.
It's always lying there,
just at the edge of luring, soft changes.
She can incline herself in either direction.
Willingness to move forward comes with much prodding.
I wonder how long it will take this time.
The glassy stare,
the moody silence,
withdrawal and objection,
the heavy, dark defiance against transition.
It plays like a well-worn recording stuck in its own weary track,
droning on and on under comforting white sheets that can shut out the light.
It is her world that I know so well, yet I am not allowed to enter.
I wait on the periphery,
acknowledging the shaky steps forward and backward –
a tiring, overused lullaby that lost its luster long ago.
The wind swirls around me,
calling your name softly.
You dance through the leaves and come upon me in tiny white flecks of snow,
surrounding me as I travel down winding roads.
Lights on, lights off,
illuminating the essence of you,
needing you to be present,
aching for the touch of you
– to hear your voice of resonance, to traverse through our familiar sectors together;
two radii intersecting on the grid.
I cry out for you today,
missing your distinct laughter that is mine,
your funny, quirky ways.
I wish you were in the here and now –
my sister, my friend, my kindred spirit. I wish you were in the here and now.
Let Her Go
I hear the soft words,
"Let her go,"
tinkling in my inner ear long after she is gone.
"She's much better off,
now at peace," they say,
uttering rehearsed clichés as the gnawing, sharp sorrow nestled in my broken heart fills the void of my dear friend's passing, still raw.
My heart clamors to see her once again,
witness her contagious laughter,
hold close the fond momentary snapshots of old,
lingering there in the brittle thin air.
Untold shared secrets, pulsating rhythms,
expressed hopeful expectancy,
willing our desires to reflect upon all.
Innocent wishes for the greater good.
"Let her go," they say,
mere echoes in my inner ear long after she is gone.
Echoes, echoes wandering across the lake.
The smoothness rippling your name.
Would I to climb higher,
would you answer me then?
Would your voice blend with mine in the harmony of now?
Why won't you answer my calls?
Echoing, echoing across timeline grids,
haunting my waking sleep.
I reread your words now and again.
Imprints to remind me of your wishes for me.
But somehow I'm stuck in the echoes of my own voice.
Still, maybe it is where you wish me to be ...
Emblems of Loss
They are all around me,
emblems of loss.
The hovering hawk circling in my head,
the seagull's flight lost in thick fog,
the eyes of a sweet dog,
penetrating, asking, telling.
Emblems of loss surround my abode of real and unreal dreams.
Dreams of then and now mixing, blending with one another,
leaving too many questions of how to proceed now.
Big questions that seem to go unanswered.
All these emblems of loss.
Grief comes in stages, they say,
none more difficult than the other.
Probably acceptance is the hardest for me as I tend to wallow in the aftermath.
It comes on the shadows of the passing of a loved one,
held close in walks of distinct memories.
Floods of mourning spewed out over time,
like a waterfall of thoughts never ending but fixed so clearly in my mind's eye.
It comes with transitions that help with clearing and healing –
the loss of a child as she embarks on her life,
the tearful parting of ways of lifetime friends as they move on to another purpose,
the painful letting go of another for his own good.
The love transitions are the hardest of all –
leaving another for your own best self to emerge,
the distance that sets in when life changes,
the letting go of a lifestyle to embrace another,
the teachings so hard to accept,
the pain of it all.
Grief comes in different stages, they say,
but, nevertheless, they all speak of change and loss.
As I look back on all my mourning,
I see clearly that it was written for my growth,
so I will reflect and bide my time in joy until the next onslaught of grief.
Ah, grief, my friend, my foe,
my learning posts along my ever-winding paths,
you are my appendage and my evolution,
my love of the world in which I live.
Sending light today to all those crippled souls who wish to remain tied in emotional knots,
seeking answers to dilemmas of their own making.
The drums play slowly for such impairment.
Impaled karmic bonds –
old, broken, rigid patterns,
unyielding strangleholds of yore.
Break through the solstice of your ecliptic timelines,
lying in wait, beckoning you to come forward.
Greet your malleable future.
Ask for manifestations, declared current thought forms.
I can no longer murmur upon deaf ears, attuned to their own lower natures.
I'm grievously afflicted by the crippling content, suspended in another realm of doubt,
wrestling with itself,
continuing unabated for now.
I collect you in your transparent bubbles,
shimmering there, still and quiet,
and send you back to the Light for this is not my work but yours.
Not My Mountain
It's not my mountain;
it is yours to cross.
I see that now.
Still, there is a lingering twittering needing to be silenced.
I will always extend outstretched arms to assist you to cross the steep-sided ravines,
the many circulating streams fearlessly cascading down their pitched sides into the plunging waterfalls that churn and pound your soul.
You will find your guiding light to reach the other side.
Yes, there is a mountain to cross,
but it is yours, not mine.
I'm entangled in a web of dalliance.
Dancing mirrors of past lives surround my every move.
How may I rid myself of this undergrowth that threatens to drown me in its ever-tightening hold around my exposed throat?
I have submitted to its lure so many times before,
making excuses for staying stuck in the muck of my own making,
my voices all but silent,
acquiescing to someone else's preconceived programs.
I pretend to be happy and carefree,
but implicit in the lifestyle is the inability to move forward toward dreams, visions of my soul that lie waiting for an awakening,
an awakening that would produce much joy and fanfare should I choose to gather its branches.
I need your help, Lord.
Send in your armies of hope,
like guardian angels on wings,
to find my hidden self left on some previous agendas'
rosters, lying in buried dusty bins of long ago, unkept promises.
I need you now.
I am desperate to break these self-imposed chains that haunt me in my newly found awareness of self-sabotaged fears,
fears that have been vibrating for far too long,
blocking my every path to redemption of true self.
I beg you to release these hidden vows that no longer serve me.
Let me walk with you again,
take your hand, and follow you in complete surrender,
my inner child allowed to play and dance to your rhythms,
drumbeats pounding in my heart.
You suck me dry with your endless pursuit of a mirrored blank slate,
regardless of my perceived needs or apparent desires to rid myself of my own quandaries.
It was written that we would become sisters in spirit,
etheric roles claimed.
Womb openings torn apart for us to view unobstructed through the medieval captivity of our own roomed castles.
But your hallways hold the old answers,
blurred by time and other lifelines.
You must search through the rumpled baggage,
remnants left behind.
I can facilitate the paths of ascension only when true assistance cries out loudly enough for my attuned ears to hear the messages within.
Rest assured, some of this was not meant for my reiki eye,
and they will slam the doors shut when I'm presented with your work in this space,
in this time frame.
So do not try to suck me dry in a desperate attempt to rid yourself of painful karma,
work that must be done by you alone.
There is no blank slate,
even though we clear out the overflowing garbage,
debris of our own making.
We can only dispose of what is programmed for the universal benefit of all.
Unsung songs are left upon my furrowed brows,
lost in concentrated efforts to right the wrongs but never fully reaching the finish line.
Where is the slender sword of justice hiding from my stifled screams of hope?
I keep constructing these impenetrable walls of circular origin; the beginning becomes the end,
never attaining pure unbridled thought of praise, an esteem worthy of attention,
an attention captured by the universal voice.
I can make a difference in other's lives,
I claim, emitting piercing forlorn cries amid the self-doubt clouds surrounding every exit bridge I construct in desperation,
an attached desperation conceived long ago.
From where did these adhesive delays appear,
cleaved closely, faithful servants of doubt?
Severed lines of communication quivering there in the moonlight of my lifeline,
a lost expression of eternal self.
Oh, Lord, hear my urgent prayers for assistance.
Send in your earthly angelic messengers to support this humble soul of souls asking for permission to learn the road to take, earning the forgotten path of my divine self.
The mirrors of myself,
that you present to me in such a harsh light have sent me cowering into the corners of my room.
Left open, scarred,
and unsure of myself,
faltering upon some precipice of what I know not.
unsure of my footing,
where to regain my balance.
I wrote this to stabilize unfinished business,
to work myself through these reflections of what I have been over centuries of time.
Forgive me if I falter for I sense I've been at these crossroads before and have chosen unwisely to mend some of my ways,
leaving the rest of me to fester and grow rampant like some untended masochistic wound,
bleeding, swollen, and sore.
The path of promised ascension comes with a price that I must pay.
Allow me to come into the full prolific light of the cosmos.
The universal creeds remembered and practiced in perfect harmony.
Rhythms of all time and space join the reiki eye of the Lord,
yearning for victory at last!
Excerpted from "Gabriel's Light"
Copyright © 2018 BJ Feeney.
Excerpted by permission of Balboa Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Table of Contents
Light Switches, 4,
Fly Away Home, 6,
In or Out?, 9,
Fresh Air, 14,
Let Her Go, 23,
Echoes, Echoes, 24,
Emblems of Loss, 26,
Not My Mountain, 31,
Unsung Songs, 36,
Diametrically Opposed, 49,
Markers of Our Lives, 51,
Circle Travel, 55,
Hawk As Messenger, 60,
Who Am I?, 63,
Inside These Walls, 72,
Mushroom Soldiers, 73,
Lifetime Learning, 84,
Light Force, 85,
Maximize Your Power, 86,
Tread Lightly, 94,
Gift of Time, 99,
Facing Self, 115,
Moving On, 130,
Honoring Self, 132,
Inner Being, 134,
Know Thyself, 137,
Raw Power, 138,
Rise Above, 139,
Inner Ear, 143,
Eternal Blink, 144,
Create Space, 146,
Take It Public, 154,
I Am That I Am, 157,
Aging Gracefully, 174,
Full Circle, 177,
Left Behind, 180,
Without Boundaries, 185,
In the Next Life, 187,
Life Is a Bell Curve, 188,
Ebb and Flow, 192,
Feminine Mystique, 206,
My Hawk, 213,
The Search, 214,
What If?, 218,
Air Element, 222,
Cosmic Eye, 225,
Dream Catcher, 227,
Fire Element, 232,
Light Play, 233,
Water Reflections, 235,
A Mirror, 237,
Paths to Freedom, 241,
Labyrinths of My Mind, 247,
Garden of Eden, 252,
Gaping Hole, 254,
No Rush, 260,
Smoke and Mirrors, 268,
Burial Ground, 270,
Pinched Shoes, 272,
Rumbles of the Soul, 274,
I Am the Process, 275,
Fluid Behind the Fear, 277,
Broken Wings, 280,
St. Peter's Cathedral, 281,
Moonlight Mists, 283,
Morning Rhythms, 284,
Mosaic Thoughts, 288,
Mother Earth's Eye, 290,
Mother Earth Gaia, 292,
About the Author, 297,