Tag Archives: Tanka

Poetry Friday ~ Hobby & Play

29 Mar

Hello, people! I hope all is well with everyone. Welcome.

 

spring-Poetry_Friday-springtime-games-Vashti Quiroz Vega-Vashti Q-the writer next door

 

Hobby and Play are this week’s prompt words chosen by Colleen Chesebro ~ The Fairy Whisperer.

*The catch is that we can only use the synonyms to these words in our poems.

Colleen hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called, Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Tuesday Poetry Challenge every Tuesday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your Haiku, Tanka, Haibun, Etheree or Cinquain poem. She is an author and poet, and also does book reviews and so much more on her blog. Be sure to check it out.

 

Life is but a game

Sometimes it may seem unfair

But we must all learn

Frolic and find diversion

When you change, the game changes

 

Buddha-Poetry_Friday-Vashti Quiroz Vega-vashti q-the writer next door-Tanka_Tuesday-Colleen Chesebro-poetry

Enjoy the day!

 

Poetry Friday ~ Follow & Lead

15 Mar

Hello, everyone! Welcome! Thanks for stopping by my blog.

Vashti Quiroz Vega-writer-Vashti Q-Poetry_Friday-poetry-author-written word media-the writer next door

Writing can be a daunting task, especially in the beginning of writing a novel. As some of you know, I’m working on the third installment of my Fantasy Angels Series. I’m the first to admit that I can be quite hard on myself. A perfectionist by nature I can be my worst critic and when your inner critic is a mean b!†c# it can be discouraging at times, because it creates doubts about my work. 

 

“Self-affirmation is also a great way to make friends with your inner critic. When that critic pops up, recognize it, and, with purpose, tell yourself about the things you are good at. This can also help you distance yourself from your inner critic.”

~Written Word Media (Clayton)

 

I know most writers go through this insecurity stage from time to time. That’s why I love this article from Written Word Media, Beat the Author Blues: How to Manage Writer’s Doubt. It’s a great article, very encouraging with lots of helpful information. 

We are not alone. Did you know that Stephen King threw the start of his novel Carrie in the trash out of frustration? His wife fished it out and convinced him to continue.

 

“Writers don’t write from experience… If you wrote from experience, you’d get maybe one book, maybe three poems. Writers write from empathy.”

~Nikki Giovanni

 

This article has great suggestions on how to overcome common issues that all authors face. If you’re a writer, I highly recommend you read this article and save it for future reference.

Writers chase your dreams

Don’t let them fade like the mist

in the morning sun

Don’t let fear direct your life

Never give up on writing

Poetry_Friday-Vashti Quiroz Vega-Poetry-Written Word Media-Vashti Q-Tanka_Tuesday-Colleen Chesebro

 

Follow and Lead are this week’s prompt words chosen by Colleen Chesebro ~ The Fairy Whisperer.

*The catch is that we can only use the synonyms to these words in our poems.

Colleen hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called, Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Tuesday Poetry Challenge every Tuesday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your Haiku, Tanka, Haibun, Etheree or Cinquain poem. She is an author and poet, and also does book reviews and so much more on her blog. Be sure to check it out.

Have a wonderful day!

Poetry Friday ~ Cold & Storm

25 Jan

Hi, everyone! A warm welcome to my blog!

 

 

Cold and Storm are this week’s prompt words chosen by Colleen Chesebro ~ The Fairy Whisperer.

*The catch is that we can only use the synonyms to these words in our poems.

Colleen hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called, Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Tuesday Poetry Challenge every Tuesday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your Haiku, Tanka, Haibun, Etheree or Cinquain poem. She is an author and poet, and also does book reviews and so much more on her blog. Be sure to check it out.

Vashti Quiroz Vega-Poetry_Friday-Vashti Q-the writer next door-author-twitter

A chilly simper

A kiss that tastes like snake oil

A lovers’ quarrel

A wintry tempest threatens

Stop––it’s warmer together 

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Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. Let’s do less fighting and more loving. Have a great weekend!

 

Poetry Friday ~ Begin & Fresh

11 Jan

Hi, everyone! I hope all is well in your world.

 

I am beyond excited today. My book, Son of the Serpent has received another wonderful review written by bestselling, award-winning author, Suzanne Burke. What a great way to start the weekend!

You can read that review on her blog Welcome to the World of Suzanne Burke.

♥ Please read and share this amazing review. 

Suzanne, thank you so much for taking the time to read my book and for writing such a heartfelt and really generous review.

Son of the Serpent-Vashti Quiroz Vega-Fantasy Angels Series-paranormal-fallen angels-demons-gadreel-lilith-dracul

Here’s my contribution to Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Challenge:

 

Opportunity

presented at her doorstep

so the writer seized

that one chance for her soul to

start a new kind of dance

Andrew Ferez-DevianART-dragon_writer-Vashti Quiroz Vega-Poetry Friday-The Writer Next Door-Vashti Q-Poetry

Illustration by Andrew Ferez (DeviantART)

Begin and Fresh are this week’s prompt words chosen by Colleen Chesebro ~ The Fairy Whisperer.

*The catch is that we can only use the synonyms to these words in our poems.

Colleen hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called, Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Tuesday Poetry Challenge every Tuesday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your Haiku, Tanka, Haibun, Etheree or Cinquain poem. She is an author and poet, and also does book reviews and so much more on her blog. Be sure to check it out.

Happy Friday!

Poetry Friday ~ Poet’s Choice of Words

4 Jan

Welcome, everyone! I hope you all had a great start to the new year.

Vashti Quiroz Vega-Vashti Q-The Writer Next Door-author-writer-twitter-Poetry_Friday-Poetry

 

2018 was a year of high highs and low lows for me, but in the end I am grateful for all the blessings bestowed upon me, for my family and friends (including my marvelous online friends), and for the opportunity to continue on my quest to realize all my dreams.

2018 started off with a bang as I was selected “Spotlight” author by the Rave Reviews Book Club. That was a great honor and I’m still excited about it. As “Spotlight” author I was given a week long blog tour featuring me and my book, The Fall of Lilith. Needless to say, January was a fantastic and memorable month for me. By the end of February I had sold many books and received close to 30 wonderful reviews.

I travelled to Japan and that was an amazing, life-changing experience. I also published the 2nd book in my Fantasy Angels Series, Son of the Serpent. And best of all I’m cancer-free! So, although there were some extremely tough times last year, I still consider 2018 to have been an overall great year and I’m looking forward to an even better 2019 for me and for all of you too. Let’s do this! 

This week it’s “Poet’s Choice of Words” at Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Poetry Challenge. I chose the words Year and Gratitude. I dedicate this Tanka to all those amazing people online and off who supported me through the tough times and cheered me on during the great times. You are special and will occupy a space in my heart forever. 

This new year may you

realize your fondest dreams

recalling each and

every blessing with joy

and gratitude in your hearts

I would like to share the latest review for my book, Son of the Serpent written by Author, Mark Bierman.

son of the serpent-the fall of lilith-fantasy angels series-vashti quiroz vega-Vashti Q-author-writer-amazon

REVIEW:

I have yet to read the first of this series, so I was unsure of what to expect. Let me tell you, I was hooked in the first paragraph. Thanks to the skillful writing of author, Vashti Quiroz-Vega, living the tale through the eyes of Dracul and Lilith was effortless.

The references to biblical accounts were blended smoothly throughout, and depict Lilith orchestrating the downfall of humanity. The story can be described as a journey through biblical history viewed through the lens of the supernatural.

This novel is an ideal medley of action, raw emotion, and fantasy. It whets the appetite for more.

Son of the Serpent-eBook-Vashti Quiroz Vega-Fantasy Angels Series-paranormal-supernatural-Fantasy_fiction-lilith-Gadreel-Dracul-fallen angels-demons-witches-Vashti Q

Happy reading and writing!

book_dragon-poetry_Friday-Vashti Q-Vashti Quiroz Vega-writer-poet-novelist-new year-2019

Doing my “Book Dragon” happy dance.

 

Year and Gratitude are this week’s prompt words chosen by Colleen Chesebro ~ The Fairy Whisperer.

*The catch is that we can only use the synonyms to these words in our poems.

Colleen hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called, Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Tuesday Poetry Challenge every Tuesday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your Haiku, Tanka, Haibun, Etheree or Cinquain poem. She is an author and poet, and also does book reviews and so much more on her blog. Be sure to check it out.

Enjoy the 1st weekend of 2019!

Poetry Friday

14 Dec

Hello, everyone! Welcome.

Today I’m sharing a Haiku and Tanka followed by a short excerpt from my new book, Son of the Serpent

The poems are written in the ocean’s point of view at the time of the Great Flood. I hope you enjoy it.

He fills me with rain

I venture to cleanse the Earth

Of His tainted souls

A form in the clouds

The ward who had restrained me

loosed my giant waves

All I wished for was to breathe

But my breath moves mountains

 

Son of the Serpent is a High Fantasy|Paranormal novel sprinkled with Horror and Romance. It is aimed at an 18+ audience. The book is written in 1st person POV. There are chapters written in Dracul’s voice interspersed by chronicles written in Lilith’s (the villain) voice. Today I’m going to share an excerpt from one of the Chronicles of Lilith.

Son of the Serpent-Vashti Quiroz Vega-fantasy angels series-lilith-gadreel-dracul-blog tour-virtual_book_tour-angels and demons

Excerpt: Chronicles of Lilith

 

As I prepared to leave Shuruppak, rumors about a man named Noah, who claimed to be God’s prophet, came to my attention. According to my human servants, this man said God speaks to him and has told him there shall be a catastrophic event. Every living thing on this planet shall perish, except those beings selected by God Himself.

The servants laughed and took pleasure in ridiculing this man. They called him insane. I, however, have learned throughout the years that there is always some truth to the ramblings of the insane. I would like to see this man, Noah, and listen to his preaching, thus my departure would have to wait.

In the middle of the night I awoke to booming thunder, the likes of which I had not heard since the days I wandered in the wilderness with Gadreel when we first arrived on this planet. I leaped out of my bed and ran to a nearby window. The sky was ominous, with large bitumen-black clouds gathering to form gigantic ones. My superior vision allowed me to see things in the darkness that no other being could. A flash of lightning lit the world white for a moment. Rain began to fall, first tapping on the window and then becoming a rapid succession of beats.

I threw on a garment and ran outside to get a better look. There were still people outdoors, servants slow to finish their tasks for the day and others who came out to see what was happening. They ran for cover as storm clouds spat their loads of water. Sharp droplets of icy-cold water needled my shoulders and back. I shivered under the prickly feeling. The rain came in torrents now. Puddles formed, and the puddles became streams. They grew into rivers. I ran to a nearby tree to take shelter under it.

I hid from the people running and screaming in fear and shifted to my serpent form. The torrent became more intense, and the night grew darker with the bruise of thick, angry clouds. A wall of rain moved over the tree I stood under, and the drops drummed against the canopy. So much water fell from the skies that the sound blurred into one long, whirring tumult.

Many of the people of Shuruppak left their flooded homes and wandered the streets like lost souls. They had never seen a storm of this magnitude. Some had only been familiar with the morning dew. I had seen enough. I spread my wings and took to the sky. Flying had never been more difficult. The rain pelted my wings, while bolts of lightning threaten to spear me as they sliced the air to my left and right.

The earth shook and sent shockwaves rippling through the ground like water, destroying houses in an instant. Fires exploded everywhere, and the smell of smoke twisting through the air between raindrops was acrid on the hot breeze. Regular clatters rang out as structures crumbled apart and fell to the ground. I needed to escape, find shelter, but where could I hide from such devastation? The skies were becoming more and more dangerous. I flew toward the coast, but my wings grew too heavy and sodden to keep me airborne. I fell to the beach.

I looked toward the coastline, wincing and moaning, feeling the pain of my fall. I had been to this beach before, but it looked strangely unfamiliar now, abnormally vast. I thought maybe the darkness of the night was playing tricks on my vision, but then I realized why the beach looked so strange. The surf had drawn back hundreds of miles; the abandoned sand twinkled in the moonlight despite the rain.

I gasped at a black line on the horizon and watched as a colossal wave swept toward me at hundreds of miles per hour—rushing, roaring, angry froth foaming from between its lips. I stared, eyes fixed, as the wave surged in. I knew it was impossible to escape it. Heat had never left my body as fast as it did in this brief moment of realization. The torrent came after me, granting me a few seconds to enjoy breathing the ocean air before it wrapped me in frigid foamy fingers and dragged me to the ocean floor.

I struggled as sand and briny water filled my lungs, causing them to expand and burn. As the wave moved, it pulled me along with it, like it wanted me to witness the devastation it would cause. My death would not be simple or fast, for the powers granted to me by the fruit from the Tree of Life would sustain me. Powers I once cherished now seemed a curse.

As the wave pushed me along, I crashed into debris in the water. Every stab, rip, and fracture my body suffered brought me immense pain. Men, women, and children drowned, their dead bodies floating around me, yet I remained alive.

The giant wave hit Shuruppak. It was nothing like the waves which lap the shore every minute of every day. This was a gigantic wall of water, cold and powerful. It came over land with the power of a volcanic blast. It moved over the city with more ease than a wave over the sand, reducing houses and structures to rubble and killing every living thing.

My broken body filled with water, sand, and debris until the weight of it fixed me to the ocean floor. People, livestock, uprooted trees, and all manner of structures floated past me. The rain continued to pour.

The sky was now hinting at sunrise. Nothing escaped my eyes and ears, but I was immobile. Every inch of my body throbbed with pain, and the cold of the water chilled my bones. As I lay motionless, I watched a large wooden vessel approach. It was the greatest ship I had ever seen. It glided over the water’s surface, throwing its shadow to the sea floor as it sailed past me, turning day to night. I overheard people singing and the roar, moo, bleat, and bray of animals coming from the vessel. Not everyone had perished. Some shall go on, while I remain imprisoned in this watery grave. The weight of the water pressed down on me, crushing me, as the rain increased its depth.

The feeling of drowning never left me. The feeling of panic, unable to take breath, to inflate my lungs. The slow filling of my larynx––gagging, coughing, briny water forcing its way through my nostrils and into my lungs like acid. I would drown and die, and after a moment of peace, the process began again.

A familiar recollection filled the void in my head, spinning memories of Beelzebub lying at the bottom of the Euphrates River bound in chains, disfigured by suffering and hate. Is that also to be my fate? Shall I become a grotesque monster wallowing in fear, self-loathing, and pain?A sharp, loud wail pierced my psyche, and I realized it was I who did the screaming.

Fantasy Angels Series-son of the serpent-the fall of lilith-Vashti Quiroz Vega-fantasy-novel-fallen angels-demons-jinn-lilith-gadreel-dracul

Try and Life are this week’s prompt words chosen by Colleen Chesebro ~ The Fairy Whisperer.

*The catch is that we can only use the synonyms to these words in our poems.

Colleen hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called, Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Tuesday Poetry Challenge every Tuesday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your Haiku, Tanka, Haibun, Etheree or Cinquain poem. She is an author and poet, and also does book reviews and so much more on her blog. Be sure to check it out.

Have a wonderful day!

Poetry Friday ~ Pleasant & Read

16 Nov

Hello, everyone! A warm welcome to my blog!

For the next couple of weeks I thought I would share some of the posts I had prepared for my blog tour, for those who were not able to make it to the blogs hosting it. Today I will share a short interview along with Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Tuesday Poetry Challenge.

Pleasant and Read are this week’s prompt words chosen by Colleen Chesebro ~ The Fairy Whisperer.

*The catch is that we can only use the synonyms to these words in our poems.

Colleen hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called, Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Tuesday Poetry Challenge every Tuesday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your Haiku, Tanka, Haibun, Etheree or Cinquain poem. She is an author and poet, and also does book reviews and so much more on her blog. Be sure to check it out.

Colleen Chesebro-Tanka_Tuesday-Poetry_Friday-blog tour-son of the serpent-Vashti Quiroz Vega-Vashti Q-Poetry-Colleens Weekly Poetry Challenge

Join us every Tuesday!

“Don’t be so quick to judge me. You only see what I choose to show you.”

When you look at me

There is a lot you don’t see

Don’t be quick to judge

If you try to understand

You’ll see loveliness instead


Poetry Friday-author-vashti quiroz vega-the writer next door-vashti q-son of the serpent-novel-blog tour-book_tour

11 Questions Readers Are too Afraid To Ask Me

 

 

Are you a devil worshiper, Satanist?

 

Absolutely not. My stories are not about the devil, he happens to be a character in one or two of my stories but the stories are not about him and even if they were it wouldn’t mean I was a Satanist.

 

Do you believe in God? The devil?

 

I believe in God and angels, so I believe that just like there are good entities there must also be evil ones. How can people like Ted Bundy, Tsutomu Miyazaki, Jack the Ripper, Ahmad Suradji, Adolf Hitler, Andrei Chikatilo among others exist if there wasn’t a devil?

 

Are you a witch?

 

Witches have gotten a bad wrap through the years. Remember the evil witch from “Hansel and Gretel” who snatches up children to eat? How about Bette Midler’s character in “Hocus Pocus”?

 

In real life, a witch can look like anyone else. To me a witch is simply someone who is aware of her own power and puts that power into action.

 

Are you a religious person?

 

That would depend on one’s definition of what being religious entails.  I believe in the Golden Rule, “do unto others as you would have them do unto you”. I’ve also added, “treat others like you would like others to treat your children, parents, spouse or friend.” If you would like others to treat your children with patience and kindness, be patient and kind to other children. If you want your elderly parents or grandparents to be treated with respect and dignity, treat every elderly person you come in contact with the same way.

 

I believe in doing good deeds and being kind and fair.  I don’t believe that going to a church every week or every day makes one a good person. Although there are many good people who attend churches, synagogues, mosques . . . there are also many self-righteous people who wear the facade of good, caring individuals when in fact they are nothing but selfish hypocrites with their own agendas.

 

I have no doubt that there are many lovely churches and temples with wonderful congregations but churches and temples are merely buildings. I’ve always felt closest to God surrounded by nature.

 

Why do you write?

 

Why does a person eat, sleep, or breathe? To live. That’s the same reason I write––to live.

 

Why do you write dark fantasy, horror, thriller?

 

These have always been the genres that I’ve been attracted to since I was a child.  We all have a dark side, dark thoughts. I believe writing dark fiction helps me purge the darkness inside me in a positive way.

 

Do you read only dark fiction books?

 

I’ve always loved reading fantasy (High, Epic, Dark), horror, thriller, and science fiction, but I have read books in other genres from time to time. However, since I joined the Rave Reviews Book Club I’ve read many books of different genres. I’m always surprised about how much I enjoy them and some of those genres have really grown on me.

 

Do you associate yourself with any of your villains?

 

No. As a matter of fact, I have at times asked myself, what is the opposite I would do in a certain scenario, in order to determine the villain’s next move. I have done research on serial killers, tyrants, and the criminally insane in order to come up with the personalities and traits of my villains. I’m not a perfect saint but I’m also not evil.

 

Some people have been offended by the way you portray angels and for writing new takes on heaven and hell. Does that bother you? What would you say to these people?

 

I probably wouldn’t say anything to these people but for the sake of the interview, I would first remind them that my books are not religious, non-fiction books they are fantasy fiction. Some people just can’t differentiate fiction from non-fiction, they believe everything they read and I consider that to be dangerous. I would also tell them that if they do not like my portrayal of angels then maybe they should write their own book depicting angels in the manner they feel is right. And lastly, I am neither the first nor the last author to write about angels and demons or to create my own version of heaven and hell. There’s “Inferno” by Dante, “Paradise Lost” by John Milton, “Eric” by Terry Pratchett, “The Screwtape Letters” by C.S. Lewis, “What Dreams May Come” by Richard Matheson and many more. I’m in good company.

 

Some people claim to be religious while knowing very little about their own religion. I’ve also discovered that the people that are truly religious and knowledgeable about the doctrine and scriptures in their faith don’t have a problem with my book or any book like mine, and many have actually enjoyed books like mine because they see them for what they are––works of fiction.

 

Do you believe in magic?

 

I believe in magick. I believe the mind is a powerful instrument and people can achieve miracles with the power of positive thinking. You may call it prayer, faith . . . People have cured themselves from incurable diseases because they thought it possible. I have experienced both the power of positive thinking as well as the power of negative thinking. Positive thinking is like a spell of protection. Magick is about raising and directing energy to fulfill your intentions.

 

Are you a dark and moody person?

 

I have my dark moments like everyone else, I suppose. I do my share of brooding, but I do not consider myself a dark, moody or pessimistic person. On the contrary, I always try to see the glass half full. I have actually been accused of smiling too much or being too happy at times. I try to see the good in people because I believe there is good in most people. I don’t hold grudges. I rather confront someone who I believe has done me wrong and tell him or her how I feel because then I can move on and forget about it.

 

Poetry Friday-son of the serpent-vashti quiroz vega-novel-angels and demons-lilith-bible_stories-book tour-Vashti Q

“Those who judge will never understand, and those who understand will never judge.”

*If there are any other questions you’d like to ask me please do so in the comment section below.

 

 

Poetry Friday

28 Sep

Hello, everyone! Welcome to my blog.

 

My plan was to release my new book, Son of the Serpent late summer. Well, things don’t always work out the way we plan them. The formatting is taking a while and I am now looking at a publication date at the beginning of November.

However, Son of the Serpent is available for pre-order for only 99¢ (It’s the least I can do). If you were planning to purchase the eBook please take advantage of this pre-order price.

Meanwhile, I did finish the back cover copy which I will share with you today. Please feel free to give me your opinions on it in the comment section.

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Illustration for Son of the Serpent by Scarlett Fawn

Fall and Try are this week’s prompt words chosen by Colleen Chesebro ~ The Fairy Whisperer.

*The catch is that we can only use the synonyms to these words in our poems.

Colleen hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called, Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Tuesday Poetry Challenge every Tuesday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your Haiku, Tanka, Haibun or Cinquain poem. She is an author and poet, and also does book reviews and so much more on her blog. Be sure to check it out.

Stumble once or twice

Does the world end if you fail?

If you love your art

Have the courage to venture

Let the writer in you win

Poetry_Friday-Vashti Quiroz Vega-Son of the Serpent-angels and demons-novel-Fantasy Angels Series-new_book-dark fantasy-fallen angels-lilith-dracul

Blurb (Back Cover Copy):

 

In Son of the Serpent, award-winning author Vashti Quiroz-Vega crafts another fascinating glimpse into the dark, compelling world of fallen angels and demons, revealing more about their untold stories.

 

The war in heaven might be over, but the ambitions of the fallen angel Lilith reach far across the roots of history. Will there be a being powerful enough to stop her evil influence before the destruction of mankind?

 

Dracúl knows he is the son of Satan, but the rest of his memory has been taken from him. Alone and frightened, he awakens in a forest, beginning a quest to piece together who he is. The world he encounters is cruel, but he yearns to belong and find companionship. With each step he takes, another missing piece of his memory falls into place, revealing a truth that is ever more troubling . . .

 

A truth that will turn his quest for meaning into one fueled by the hot-blooded thirst for revenge. A truth that leads him to Lilith, the most wicked and ruthless of fallen angels and one he soon will have every reason to hate. His quest will consume him, perhaps ruin his life, but somehow Dracúl is determined to find both belonging and vengeance—to be good, in spite of his evil nature and the dark secrets that haunt him every step of the way.

Son of the Serpent-book-novel-Vashti Quiroz Vega-author-Poetry_Friday-Tanka-Japan

Available for pre-order, Monday 10/01/2018

Let me know what you thought of my book blurb.

Did it intrigue you?

Have a Happy Friday!

Preorder Son of the Serpent for only 99¢!

 

Poetry Friday ~ Exemplary & Sadness

7 Sep

Hi, everyone!

 

I’m back from my two weeks in Japan and I must say I miss it already. The Japanese people are remarkable. From the moment we arrived at Narita International Airport we felt welcomed. The airport, train station, restaurant and hotel employees as well as passers by went out of there way to help us with any issue, sometimes before we even got the chance to ask for help.

 

Although the country is packed with people everything ran smoothly. The trains and buses were always on time, restaurants were never too full, the streets were clean although there were no garbage cans––anywhere. We learned to carry a plastic bag in our backpacks to store garbage while out and about. On escalators everyone stood on the left, so that if anyone wanted to walk up the steps they could come up the right side. People formed lines and walk down on the left side of a stairway and up on the right side, so that no one is ever in the way or in danger of colliding with someone else. People entered the trains in an orderly fashion and if the train was extra full the conductor would come over and assist by pushing the people in tight with his gloved hands, like you would push down the clothes in an overstuffed suitcase before just barely getting that zipper closed.

 

Cab, Uber and bus drivers thanked us for allowing them to drive us around. We never saw a fight or an argument anywhere. Although drinking alcohol is allowed at anytime we never saw a single drunk walking the streets. There was no yelling or cussing. Everyone seemed so kind and courteous to one another, it was surreal at times.

 

I fell in love with Japanese fashion. Well, the women’s fashion style. The men mostly wore black suits and white shirts. In the train station during the morning work rush you’d see a sea of white shirts and black pants. Even the school age boys wore black pants and white shirts. The women were another story. First, we had to ask ourselves if there were any ugly Japanese women? If there were, they must have stayed indoors the entire time we were there. The Japanese women we saw were beautiful and refined. Their style was feminine, colorful and elegant in an understated way. Honestly, I felt a bit self-conscious walking around in my jeans, T-shirt and sneakers. And why didn’t they sweat? Our first couple of days in Japan the temperature was in the upper nineties. My niece, who lives there, told us it was a record high. The moment I walked out of the airport beads of sweat began to form over my upper lip and it wasn’t long before we were all covered in perspiration. Yet, I never saw a Japanese woman dripping in sweat. They walked by in their regal way, looking immaculate in their perfect outfits without a hair out of place and dry as powder.

 

I don’t think the word “elderly” applies to the seventy and eighty-something year olds in Japan. Not when they zipped by you on their bicycles. When we visited the shrines in Kyoto we climbed 500+ steps up a mountain. As I struggled up the last twenty-something steps, a group of men and women clearly in their seventies or eighties zoomed right past me to the top. To say I was shocked is an understatement. Seeing the vitality of their older generation was a testament to their healthy lifestyle.

 

After a week of living among these people, my brother and I came up with a theory. They’re not from here. They’re an elite race of aliens from another planet or dimension chosen to live on Earth to show us mere humans how we should live. They are here to lead by example. How could these perfect beings be human? Human beings are not perfect. We make mistakes, we get angry and yell sometimes, we get tired and we sweat!

Torii Gates-Japan-Poetry_Friday-Tanka-Vashti Quiroz Vega-Japanese-Vashti Q

Torii Gates (Kyoto, Japan)

You may not believe

but they do walk among us

these perfect beings

from birth to birth they go with

no proper place for sorrow

Japan-Kyoto-Torii Gates-Poetry_Friday-Vashti Quiroz Vega-Tanka-micro poetry-Vashti Q

Check out my Instagram for more pictures. (Click on photo)

Poetry_Friday-Tanka-Vashti Quiroz Vega-Japan-Vashti Q-Torii Gates

Torii Gates (Kyoto, Japan)

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Exemplary and Sadness are this week’s prompt words chosen by Colleen Chesebro ~ The Fairy Whisperer. *The catch is that we can only use the synonyms to these words in our poems.

Colleen hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called, Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Tuesday Poetry Challenge every Tuesday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your Haiku, Tanka, Haibun or Cinquain poem. She is an author and poet, and also does book reviews and so much more on her blog. Be sure to check it out.

Poetry Friday ~ Love & Time (Synonyms)

17 Aug

Hello, everyone! Welcome!

 

I don’t know if you’ve heard the news about the ‘Red Tide’ algae affecting southwest Florida, but what’s going on here is a real tragedy.

Toxic algae, called ‘red tide’ are killing the marine life in the southwest coast of Florida. Sea creatures have been washing up on our shores. The situation is so bad that our governor has declared a state of emergency.

This kind of thing upsets me beyond belief. Scientists are trying to figure out how to get rid of these tiny creatures and there has been some wild speculations as to how they had come to be. Well, I have a theory of my own. I believe The Deepwater Horizon oil spill (BP oil spill) in the Gulf of Mexico, April 20, 2010 is one of many things to blame. Nature always tries to protect itself and that includes marine life. All the garbage and oil in the water have killed many aquatic creatures and vegetation. Maybe, some of the gulf’s algae mutated into what are now known as ‘red-tide algae’ to protect itself long ago and maybe they plague us for disrespecting their environment. Yes, I know this reads like something out of an M. Night Shyamalan movie, but it makes perfect sense to me. When a life form is placed in a toxic environment it will either die or change to adapt to its new surroundings. Only this algae has mutated into a monstrous form that kills off every other creature around.

Now, I know that it is a natural phenomenon, but the exact cause or combination of factors that result in a red tide outbreak are not necessarily known. I also know that this phenomenon has occurred since ancient times. Biblical scholars and early marine biologists of the late nineteenth century postulated that the first plague of the Exodus story, the blood color of the Nile, might have been an outbreak of Red Tide. But who’s to say that pollution, oil spills and other unnatural disturbances in the water doesn’t have something to do with a Red Tide outbreak occurring.

Anyway, here’s an article from the Washington Post you can read for yourself:

Florida’s governor this week made official what residents of southwest Florida already knew: The bloom of toxic algae that has darkened gulf waters is an emergency. The red tide has made breathing difficult for locals, scared away tourists, and strewn popular beaches with the stinking carcasses of fish, eels, porpoises, turtles, manatees and one 26-foot whale shark. Continue reading . . . 

Mother Nature’s Lament

In an age of greed

Seas once clean now choke with oil

My darling sea life

Leaving your bodies on shore

As red tides lap my beaches

red tide-toxic_algae-Florida-Poetry_Friday-Vashti Q-The Writer Next Door-Vashti Quiroz Vega-marine_life

 

Love and Time are this week’s prompt words chosen by Colleen Chesebro ~ The Fairy Whisperer. *The catch is that we can only use the synonyms to these words in our poems.

Colleen hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called, Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Tuesday Poetry Challenge every Tuesday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your Haiku, Tanka, Haibun or Cinquain poem. She is an author and poet, and also does book reviews and so much more on her blog. Be sure to check it out.

Thank you for visiting!