15 Jul 2013

Good battles with evil.

Does evil exist? We all know it does although we'd rather not face the fact. Some say the fallen angel Lucifer began the trend by arguing against the creator. A story in the bible shows a snake tempting Eve, which led to mankind's present state of lying and therefore evil deeds.

I say it's all about balance. 

When something goes wrong (evil) we need to adjust our thinking. This leads to growth.

An example would be like this excerpt from my novel, Tidal Surge. Click here for link to Amazon. Just released:

The dashboard in her sight faded. Liliha struggled for breath in a sudden searing wind before inhaling the familiar lily perfume. A dizzy sensation spun her out of control and sucked her into the aperture.
* * * *
I shrug off my reluctance. My experience helps to take in the urban surroundings without the fuzzy edges making me dizzy. The colorful lights of a large city glow in the distance. Below, a young boy, approximately eight years old, stumbles along a paved area beside a sheet of illuminated water.
Concerned, I observe while descending. His steps take him close to tree limbs. He veers over a paved area to lurch toward the edge of the river protected by a metal fence where he staggers and falls.
Wondering if he's ill, I dive close to see a cute little Japanese face with spiky hair. He shouldn't be out alone during the night. I notice new white trainers. Someone must care for him. A half-empty bottle of sake protrudes from his coat pocket. Blood covers his knuckles and dots the front of his clothing.
He must have been in a fight. Where would a child pick up a bottle of alcohol? Desperate to help, I bond with him. I can't believe what I learn. Small for his age at twelve years old, Daiki mugs people. He stole those trainers. Underneath the recent memories, I discover other acts of terror on many more people—a total of seventeen in all. Each fills him with self importance.
Rather than judge society, I wonder what sort of life has led him to this point. He needs emotional help as well as physical. I must rescue his body if not his mind. I disengage from the small dazed boy and search the street.
Footsteps echo in the dark, revealing a man and woman walking together.
With a puff, I direct their attention to the boy's slumped form.
Mobile in hand, the man calls an ambulance.
Finished here, I slip into the void.
* * * *
Liliha shuddered. The child, with the face of a cherub, possessed the mind of a devil. Once Daiki was admitted to hospital, she hoped the authorities would find out what he'd done and provide counseling. Although she couldn't save him, other innocent people would be protected from further mischief while he took in whatever help he could handle.

Here’s a blurb:
Wearing her magic ring during visions, an idealist battles against her nemesis and discovers her own daughter is trapped by an evil scarab-bracelet.

If not for evil, we would carry on making the same mistakes, never aware of our own wrongdoing. 

I like to think I'm one of the good people. Every now and again in the past, my husband has pulled me up about my attitude toward him. I've been thoughtless or not given him credit for what he's done. After careful consideration, I apologize, adjust my thinking and restore calm to my own little paradise.

Partners all have these little tussles. Just remember to take the positive from every situation.

8 Jul 2013

A potential apocalypse?

Is mankind headed for an apocalyptic future? Meteorologists say any one of the many passing comets could hit Earth at any time. And there is nothing they could do about it. Every day, news stories tell of unrest amongst the population.
In the news this morning:

  • Morsi loyalists shot dead in Cairo,
  • Crash plane tried to abort landing,
  • Canada train blast a war zone,
  •  Ten die in Alaska plane crash,
  •  US-EU trade talks amidst tensions ... to name a few
  •   And Long Doom Calling, the forth in the Higher Ground, futuristic series, has been released at last.

Okay—I'm taking a side-track with this announcement. I know many of you were waiting for the futuristic group of travelers from Cornworld to reach their destination. Long Doom, the big bad city where packs of dogs roam and men prey on each other, gives the delightful country folks quite a challenge. With the centre of the city still flooded, Cerridwen needs to dive to find the treasure mentioned in the cave back in Saint Eyes.

My 89-year-old neighbor Isaac spoke to me yesterday about the premise for the books. He gave me quite a lecture. In his eyes, the books depict civilization going backwards, which he thought was ridiculous because technology is advancing. When I explained that all the technology was wiped out during the flood after the comet strike, he said mankind would find a way to keep it.
He could be right. By the way, I plan to write a novel chronicling his adventures after he arrived in London in 1938 at the age of 14.

But, back to the future: say a comet struck Earth—in England, near London. Perhaps it would knock the planet out of alignment. The fault-line between England and Scotland would crack, raising England and lowering Scotland again. Everyone would try to reach higher ground. Many would drown. Generations would pass before the land dried out. In the meantime the forest would take over. That's the basis for the plot.

Other science fiction writers have presented stories about wonderful futuristic technology. But, I've often wondered how they kept it after an apocalypse.

What are your views about a possible catastrophic future? Is my idea pessimistic as Isaac said?

5 Jul 2013

Share your garden with wildlife.

The times are changing along with the seasons. This year, the English bluebells flowered a month late. Nature needs a helping hand in a place near you. Flying, crawling or slithering critters need shelter and sustenance. 

If you'd love to see more wildlife in your garden, clever choices for your borders and herb patches can give nature a helping hand. Create safe area for wildlife away from human influences—leave part of your garden untouched, with good access to other gardens or wild spaces. By making space for the critters you can provide for the whole food chain, without the need to dig into your pocket. An undisturbed pile of logs makes an excellent hideaway for an incredible number of insects which in turn can attract birds and mammals.

A strip of land divides our garden from the grassy field alongside stables. Long ago, foresighted individuals planted apple trees forty feet apart along this narrow section. Brambles and grasses have filled in the space. Bees are hovering over the flowers at the moment. I look forward to picking blackberries. There will be plenty to share with the birds and wild life. 

But if you prefer a more orderly garden, you can still provide additional food and shelter for creatures large and small with a good mix of plants.

*      Trees give birds somewhere to nest and can provide fruit for foxes, badgers and even deer
*      Hedgerows, much used in England to divide fields, growing native plants such as holly, provide essential cover and corridors that join up green spaces for small mammals
*      A range of shrubs that flower at different times will improve the diversity of visitors to your garden
*      Longer grass is essential for egg-laying insects such as butterflies, so leave a bit of lawn untrimmed
*      Taller flowers will attract flying friends from bees to dragonflies
*      Night-scented plants such as buddleia and evening primrose are great for moths which in turn are a feast for bats
*      Wall climbers can provide links between gardens for pollinators
*      Make a calm haven in coastal gardens with trellis and evergreens to act as a windbreak
*      Don't forget your water feature: ponds are essential for amphibians and offer a bath and beverage for birds
*      Compost heaps are a warm home to reptiles as well as a great source of nutrients for your garden

Top ten plants every wildlife gardener should consider for their patch are: sunflowers, foxgloves, thyme, lavender, honeysuckle, rowan, ice plant, firethorn, barberry and purple loosestrife.


I sit quietly beneath the sunshade
Watching all the life around me parade
Hoverflies sip sweet nectar as they please
Snapdragons shut their lips tight behind bees.

Butterflies weave in and out amongst plants
That my delighted eyes placed to enhance
The riot of colour and smell planted
A garden altar to heaven granted.

It's so amazing that we can achieve
A result so perfect when we perceive
The concept of so many things to grow
Reliant on our desire to flow.

At last in sunshine shown to perfection
Living plants laid out for eyes detection
From nowhere, insects feast in the reward
Their inter-action cannot be ignored.

And soon the song birds are tempted lower
From the neighbourhood, cats watch and glower
Feathers strewn about like angel's traces
And spiders weave webs around their places.

No matter what first jolts your intention
All of nature weaves it's own invention
Can't judge the victor between good and bad
Sunshine lifts my spirits, I can't be sad.

© Francene Stanley

We share this world with every living thing. Let's make a garden altar—reliant on our desire to flow.