A Thought for Every Word

Archive for March, 2012

Muse Vacations

Earlier this March, I stubbed my toe on a huge writer’s block.  I labored to find the glacial means that dropped this erratic boulder in my path, but to no avail.  Nothing claimed responsibility for this behemoth.  I begrudged my fellow authors their muse, called my own muse names like miscreant and heretic.  I cried out hoping the wind would carry my despair, only to have it change direction and slam hard against my chest.  Aching under the pressure that the lost syllables applied to my already bruised and tortured ego, I acquiesced to the silence.

Then I stumbled upon a writing event.  Prompts and pictures posted for authors to grab in a free for all, to come away with a story that begged to be told.  I began to read through the prompts, languish over the pictures; until one caught my eye, then my imagination.  I felt the room begin to warm against the bitter chill in my writer’s mind. I checked my calendar…one day remained before I could claim my prompt/picture/prize.  That mattered not, as I knew I would write this story.  It was mine.

By the time the event kicked off with many an author claiming prompts for their stories, I had already gotten five thousand words for mine.  It hummed in my head and danced to thrilling notes of exaltation.  I worked the words into my laptop, crafting them, honing them, slashing them, rejoicing over them.  The story is written; the location firmly rooted, and the characters satisfied and anxious to meet the readers.

The story will go now to the moderator of the event and wait it’s turn to be presented to the readers.  My muse sits atop the dark cherrywood bookcase, panpipe in hand, and smiles.  The little vacation away from her charge has refreshed her soul.  Her melodious chants again fill my world and I am happy to report my stubbed toe is beginning to heal.

Spent Blooms

Sandburg…his name constant this winter as the fog again shrouds the trees in gossamer threads as winter lingers.

Spring will return.

Then, as nights warm to longer sun lit days, the doorways will again become host to surplus-store clad night denizens. A whispered community of human discards huddled up against prized possessions found among damp cardboard Chinese-food takeout containers. Bleary eyed from street soot. Weary limbed from stone cold concrete.

A tear unshed now and again for another lost time traveler, and those travelers that must remain. Seeking out the longer sun lit days in green grass parks, with dampened bottoms and leathered faces, gleaning the water from the grass to wash the soot from their finger tips. Wistful smiles as the smell of the grass lightens a darkened soul.

Spring will return, and again the bees will buzz around the spent blooms of yellow daffodils and red tulips that sit crowned on top the pile of white plastic twist tie bags. Gone are the days of spotting the good bits in the open bin. Nails kept long to prick open the bags and pick through the remains. Cavernous dumpsters echo in the growing light.

And Sandburg…whispering again from the open boxcar door, about white pigeons rushing at the sun.

Spring will return. It always does.

Contra Affair – Bob and Mike Together

Central America is poised for a bloodbath. Anastasio Somoza, third of the Somoza dynasty, is setting the country up for civil war with his greed and abject disdain for the people who populate his country of Nicaragua. The FSLN, Frente Sandinista de Liberacíon Nacional, is growing in strength and a coup is anticipated. Sent to keep an eye on the brewing storm, Bob Elkins is caught behind a veil of deceit and corruption, where guns, and drugs arrive daily at the borders, to be sold to the highest bidder and finance the takeover of Nicaragua. When the U.S. withdraws support of the Somoza regime and begins to back the efforts to depose the man, Bob’s cover is suspect, and he finds himself taking to the jungle of Honduras, with the rebel counterrevolutionaries known as the Contras. CIA agent, and Bob’s lover back in the U.S., Mike Wells, is sent to Honduras to blend in with the Contras. The two men, unaware that they are walking into a game of cat and mouse, join forces to get information out to the U.S. government, risking all in the process.

Much is at stake for the U.S. from the loss of Nicaragua to a communist regime, to the growing drug trade in Columbia, and the fragile countries of Costa Rica and Panama that lie in between the guns and the drugs. For Bob and Mike, it is a time of action, intrigue, and vigilance. They can share their love discreetly in the jungle, but living long enough to do so, is not going to be easy.

Vacant Trees

pale pewter cashmere blankets the sky
rain falls on vacant trees and frost hardened ground
under canopies of twisted fibers
running to find cover from the liquid silver
his back labored and sore from the monumental task
he walks in the rain and in a moment of sweet release
steps out from under the shelter of heavy raiment
and turns his face toward the pale pewter cashmere
cast off the guise of ordinary and copacetic
to walk out and flail against the drops laden with renewal
humming to match the beat of the relentless patter
his face wet with tears shed for love lying deep 
and the funeral progresses for one he called beloved
other names sit like the scent of honeysuckle on his tongue
he will not come now to hold his hand or stroke his brow
his heart hears only the sound of the rain on vacant trees

Perfect Light

I have lived in the brilliant light,
hard and clear like a highly polished diamond
sitting on the finger with a highly lacquered nail
I have lived in the penetrating light,
where you run and hide when the sun reaches it zenith and wait
until the sun sets and the ground cools before you venture forth
I have lived in the cool ice blue light,
and wondered how the sun must feel trying so hard
to touch the earth and warm it with its embrace
Today, I live in the soft light,
where the pale yellow greets the morning,
and the soft lavender whispers good evening
Light is to my heart
as words are to my soul,
and I cannot live without either
Here in the perfect light I wish to remain

Risen Moon

A glimmer of sunset sits on the horizon,
the siren song is sweet
Anchor set away from shore,
awaiting the hidden moon
Slipping deep into each others arms
from the world we retreat
To watch again as if the first,
the rise of the hidden moon
The stars twinkle with delight,
our hearts they wildly beat
The glimmer touches a sea of glass,
oh rise! the hidden moon
Dancing on the endless sea,
leviathans leap to greet
The world awash with silver light,
kiss of the risen moon

The Thread

I am thought…

to be borne on the wind and carried to those who seek to fulfill their desire.

I am not the instance nor the moment.

I am the thread that runs between them. Have you not heard “he hung on by a thread”?

I am that thread to which you cling.

I am that little bit of nothing.

I am the vestige of all you think you desire.


I am thought.

His Hand In Mine

He asked if he could take my hand, the traffic noise in his ear
I said yes and took his hand, his family nowhere near
and when we reached the other side, he smiled at me and said
every one is so good and kind, when you are one of the dead


I walk with his hand in mine every day of my life, and often wonder what he may be up to.  He liked the beach, with the rushing sound of the waves and the buoy bells beckoning.  He often spoke of long calm seas and blistering sun.  Of dipping his jeans into to the salted water, then hang them to dry and let the sun bleach the indigo to a more softened hue.  He liked the call of the gull and the sandpiper, and the shrill note of the plover.  I cannot hear these sounds without his words coming to my ears.

Oh joy! The sound of the waves as they crash upon the rocks, and the plover’s call, leading me back to the time when I held his hand in mine.

Reviews by Booked Up

Scar Tissue grabs Four Stars from Booked Up.  Read the review here or check it out on Booked Up:


Saturday, March 3, 2012

Scar Tissue by GL Roberts


It was 1976, the year of the .38 Special, the .45 Magnum, Cold War threats and Vietnam Vets returning state side looking for jobs. It was also a time when being gay could get you fired from your job, beat up or killed. This was especially true for Bob Elkins, third year DEA officer who finds himself deeply attracted to CIA newcomer Mike Wells. Although Mike returns Bob’s romantic gestures, he goes cold when it comes time to become intimate. Is Mike playing with Bob or is there something more going on? To find out, Bob must put his reputation and job on the line and risk everything.

The year was 1976, a time when being gay meant you must hide in the closet or risk losing everything.

Reviewer: Carolina Fruitfly
Scar Tissue is the story of DEA agent Bob Elkins. Bob is gay in the 70s, a time where being gay is NOT safe, especially in his line of work. Former military, Vietnam vet, the 70s are not a good time to be gay, and it is REALLY not a good time to be a gay cop.

Bob is very careful in his work life. He works hard to make sure no one has an inkling of his private life, and only a few people actually know. Then one day on the firing range, he meets Mike Wells, a new recruit for the CIA. He and Mike seem to form an instant connection, and start to spend more and more time together. Bob really likes Mike, and he wants him badly, but there is a problem – Mike is very hot and cold. One step forward, three steps back, that is how Bob is known to describe his relationship with Mike. Mike is ok with doing things sexually TO Bob, but he is very quick to back away any time Bob tries to return the favor. We have to wait patiently with Bob to find out what is wrong with Mike.

What I thought was going to be either a mystery or a tale of gaybashing or hiding, turned out to be a very sweet story of the growing love between Bob and Mike, and the patience Bob has to call on, while he gets to know Mike better, and learns the horrors in Mike’s past. The story wasn’t very long, and I did feel it could have done with a bit more time spent on the romance, rather than going with the “six months later” thing, and skimming over most of the buildup. I enjoyed both characters, and the author did an excellent job of putting us into the era, with the shag carpeting, rotary phones, and avocado green appliances. And aren’t we all glad that era is over?

All in all, this was an enjoyable read, and I’m giving it a solid 4 stars.

Publisher: Seventh Window Publications

Posted by Booked UP at 1:44 PM 

Reviews by Jessewave

Thank You Feliz!

Guest Reviewer, Feliz, posted his review for my book Scar Tissue.  Check out the review posted here and at :



Title: Scar Tissue
Author: GL Roberts
Publisher: Seventh Window Publications
Cover Artist: n/a
Amazon Buy Link:Scar Tissue
Genre: historical (1970′s)
Length: Novella (152 pdf pages)
Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars

A Guest Review by Feliz

Summary Review: This book was a surprising read, not quite what I expected, but nevertheless enjoyable  in a different way .

The Blurb: It was 1976, the year of the .38 Special, the .45 Magnum, Cold War threats and Vietnam Vets returning state side looking for jobs. It was also a time when being gay could get you fired from your job, beat up or killed. This was especially true for Bob Elkins, third year DEA officer who finds himself deeply attracted to CIA newcomer Mike Wells. Although Mike returns Bob’s romantic gestures, he goes cold when it comes time to become intimate. Is Mike playing with Bob or is there something more going on? To find out, Bob must put his reputation and job on the line and risk everything.

The year was 1976, a time when being gay meant you must hide in the closet or risk losing everything.

The Review:  When I picked up this book, I expected its main focus to be on the conflict of a relationship between two gay men who must both remain closeted due to the restraints of their time and environment. I expected angst, and drama, and given the main characters’ professions, perhaps something along the lines of a little spy action. Instead I got a character-driven romance between two winsome, down-to-earth men who were firmly rooted in their time and society.
The need for secrecy is very much a part of both characters’ everyday life, particularly when it comes to their professional lives as an agent of the newly founded DEA or, respectively, as a CIA recruit.  Both were in the military before, the experience honing their awareness for caution as well as their ability to hide. Their military time also issued them with some rather haunting memories, especially Bob; there’s one particularly heartbreaking flashback of him in Vietnam where he holds his dying lover in his arms, unable to give the man any further comfort because they are in company.
However, Bob has long ago made his peace with this aspect of his life. In private, among his roommate and friends, he’s out – he’s quite good at compartmentalizing, although the borders blur on occasion, namely with his friend Ray, who happens to be Mike’s instructor at Langley. Ray is surprisingly open-minded, even supportive of Bob’s and Mike’s budding relationship. Ray’s only worry is whether their  relationship might jeopardize possible joint missions in the future, but he takes Bob’s negative reassurances at face value and goes with it. Mike is slow to trust, but once he does, he does so implicitly and doesn’t think twice about following Bob’s lead.

To my pleasant surprise, the necessity to keep their relationship a secret was not a source of angst between Bob and Mike, nor was the reason why it took them almost a year to consummate their loving relationship. While both Bob and Mike were constantly aware of the need to be cautious and discreet in public, this was rather a fact of life to both of them. Something that just had to be heeded, like looking left and right before crossing a street.  They built their relationship around it and despite of it, which I found endearingly realistic and totally appropriate for the spirit of the times this is set in.
The 70′s were not as liberal as the 60′s had been, but not as narrow-minded as the 80′s turned out to become; in many ways, this decade was a time of changes. Scar Tissuegenerally conveyed a keen sense of its time, not only through the main character’s mindsets, but also with its attention to detail. Clothes, cars, music, political events mentioned, everything added up to a harmonious scenery in front of which the story could unfold.

The actual conflict revolved around facts in Mike’s past, and it was beautiful to watch how they both worked at getting the old specters out of their way. I found that Bob’s patience amounted to that of a saint, with all the hot and cold and the mixed signals Mike put him through without ever giving a viable reason for this behavior. Then, once Mike summoned enough courage to come clear, Bob reacted in an all too human yet comprehensible way that in turn demanded trust and patience from Mike. Nicely done.
This was what I’d call a quiet story, no blowing-up of things, no action sequences, not even outstanding drama. It wasn’t overly emotional either, though poignant in a subdued, understated way. An enjoyable read, and warmly recommended.

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