Posted in Poetry

Mesquite Bend: Readers

30 days poetry

The Library

This building has stood since 1922,
a two-story brick with fuzzy glass
that first served as the home

to the richest family in 50 miles.
When the last Bailey boy died
on Normandy sand so like

his West Texas grit, the house
went to the town, who watched
the dust blast the brick through

two more decades before a girl,
just ten, longed for a library.
Mesquite Bend baked pecan pies

and frosted cupcakes until Twain,
Hemingway and Jack London filled
shelves hand-built by the Carpenters’

Union League, who sacrificed three
weekends of baseball-playing to pound
nails into pine and polish mahogany.

Mondays, the tall English lady who once
acted on the stage in Salisbury read
Shakespeare and Seuss to anyone who gathered.

Friday nights brought the sounds
of violins and guitars trilling through pages
about farming and ranch history

as musicians and bands came
into the usually quiet walls to share
word-love of a different variety.

Summer reading contests encourage
discovery, take FFA students to jungles
in the Amazon and on adventures

where the good guys don’t always win,
and the sunsets compete with the sky
that turns orange and blue outside their windows,

rainy afternoons spent curled up
on Mama’s favorite sofa, the scent
of her lavender mixing with the dramas

about love, war and rites of passage
that help all who crave stories
face a world where joy meets pain.

Ramona Levacy
April 27, 2015

Posted in Poetry

National Poetry Writing Month #29

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A Meditation

A summer day, Mark Twain propped
between my hands, the sunlight
filtering through the oak leaves
fluttering somewhere above me,
the gurgle of the stream where I’ve come
to be still, a soothing balm
for daily worries, like being wrapped
inside my mother’s arms.

Some days, this place could be
outside my doorstep and still
projects and mopping and bill-paying
keep me huddled at a desk,
clinging to tasks as if they own
all the answers.

On this day in deep winter,
I choose Huckleberry and leaves
green as a late August afternoon,
my mind’s eye conjuring the safest
of comforts, the only place
where any believer truly meets God.

Ramona Levacy
April 29, 2013

Posted in Christianity, Writers

A few of my favorite . . . authors

Maybe it’s not a law on the books in some creepy, courthouse basement, but it is a law of nature that to be a good writer, you need to be a good reader. Also, I think you can tell a bit about the kind of writer a person is based on his/her favorite authors. Here are some of mine.

If you are interested in good, Christian fiction (and, presumably, that’s exactly what has found you here), then you may have already enjoyed some of the great work of Francine Rivers. Her Redeeming Love and The Last Sin Eater are page turners that will have you laughing, crying and in suspense. You really get to know and love her characters. And no Christian writer that I’ve come across does a better job of historical Christian fiction than Ms. Rivers. These books are for teens on the verge of adulthood at the youngest, if for no other reason than the depth of the issues the stories deal with.

My absolute favorite writer on general Christian topics (I guess you might call him an essayist) is Philip Yancey. He is straightfoward, more than well-read on a wide variety of subjects, and not afraid to admit when he doesn’t have an answer. He is “tuned in” to God in a powerful way, and taking time to read some of his books can only enhance your own walk with and understanding of our relationship to God. At least, that’s been my experience.

Since I have always been interested in history and other cultures, there are a few mass audience writers that I also enjoy. Bernard Cornwell is someone who does a great job of rendering you through the experiences of events that happened hundreds of years ago. Edward Rutherford also does a great job of going far back in time and making us understand the world from different perspectives. I especially liked his Sarum and London books.

Having a Master’s degree in English, I also enjoy good, stand-the-test-of-time literature. Mark Twain, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Jane Austen are some of my favorites. Newer writers like Toni Morrison and Leslie Marmon Silko also rate at the top of my list for their ability to represent all of us at the same time they see the world from their unique, cultural perspectives. Fiction that has the lyricism of poetry will get me any and every time.