On Hooks

Cynical Wordsmith

The title, or first line,
The picture, or font,
There must be a drawing in.
Giving the reader
One last breath
Before changing their life
Forever.
Your bait can tell us
Who you’re fishing for,
With words and tags
For which readers hunt.
But the strength and size
Of your glistening hook
Tells us how big
You dare to dream.

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A Scientist’s Advice on Healing

From Brain Pickings:

“In this enchanting animated poem, Ducker joins visions with artist Kate Sweeney to deliver a soulful prescription partway between science and metaphor, between organ and instrument, as palliating to the physiology of illness as it is to the psychology of heartbreak:”

A SCIENTIST’S ADVICE ON HEALING
by Christy Ducker

Try to accept
this fat red hurt
is your starting point,
in the way a pen must be put to paper
     in one particular spot,

then move

beyond
the globby flap
of blame
     and past
          the mono-sulk
               of pain.

Change the subject,
before it’s too late.
Sketch out
what health
you do possess,
what signal-cascades,
what flotilla of cells
circumnavigate you,

then draw yourself back
     together again,
in a language
     of your own.

Your body’s talk
is loose as lymph —
it’ll have you open out
     as a tree,
or sneak up on pain
     as assassin,
     sidekick,
     or wolf.

Encourage this
for healing won’t come at you
     straight.
Embrace the lack of heroics —
this isn’t Hollywood,
it’s you,
in a plot
that may
or may not resolve.

New Releases

Pupy Love

South Yorkshire Author pens autobiography in lockdown in memory of his wife who died shortly after the birth of their son in 2018

“Pupy Love” – a heartfelt autobiography about love overcoming grief

About the Book:

Pupy Love tells us how author Ric Hart tragically lost the love of his life but found inner peace, taking major steps through his grief to find extraordinary strength, resilience and hope for his future with Hugo Jaden Hart, Ric and Jade’s only son.  

Ric Hart met Jade Hazelgrave on Valentine’s weekend in 2002 and they became childhood sweethearts.  They conquered many of life’s challenges that would defeat allbut the most resolute of couples, getting through sixth form, college, University and Jade leaving to go travelling. They still always found each other again and as time went on, they became truly close and connected. Their love they found aged 18 was to stay with them; it never grew old. 

They had so much to look forward to in life: their careers, home plans, marriage and the final piece of the jigsaw, starting the family they both dreamed of.  Their dreams were cut tragically short and Pupy Love tells us how Ric found a way through his grief to find a brighter future once again for himself and his beloved son Hugo.   

Ric shows us, through his precious memories of Jade, how love truly conquers all.

About the Author:

Ric Hart is father to Hugo Jaden Hart who lost his mummy shortly after birth in July 2018.  Ric lost his best friend, wife and soulmate. He is two and a half years into his journey as a single parent and widower and has found huge inspiration, peace and acceptance from the loss of his wife by keeping her memory alive through the creation of his books and finding new hobbies and projects that he knows will make Jade so very proud and keep the fire inside him alight. 

For more on the life and love of Jade, see:  www.jadehartpupylove.co.uk  

Excerpt from the book:

“I remember sitting in my room in my apartment, and something came over me, all our special memories, our bond, our cuteness together as a couple and also one thing came to mind “Pupy Love”, which I guess was building up over the summer in my mind. It was as though I had turned my back on Jade, and it was like I had forgotten about us and all the reasons why we were always meant to be. She was my soulmate, and I had turned my back on the most important person to me, and it was like I had contact lenses in and couldn’t see properly. The following day, I went onto my brother’s computer and saw a picture of Jade, sat on a step, sucking her thumb, stroking her nose, and at that point, everything had come back with floods of feelings. I went into my bedroom and broke down for a while but realised I could do something about this or at least try. So at that moment, I said, “Right, bollox to this, I’m going to fight for the girl I want for the rest of my life.” So, I jumped in the shower and threw my jeans and jumper on and called for the earliest taxi to drive me to Jade’s parents in Wakefield, as at this point, my car was in the garage due to me smashing it up in the B&Q car park. The taxi man charged me £90. I said, “Deal just get me over to Wragby.”

“Pupy Love” by Ric Hart is available in hardback from Amazon at:

This book is also available to purchase in paperback at:

This autobiography is also available to download in e-book format from:

Press/Media Contact Details:

Grosvenor House Publishing
Tel. 020 8339 6060
E-mail: info@grosvenorhousepublishing.co.uk

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Not For All the Tea in China

Entertaining autobiography of a well-seasoned traveler

About the Author:                      

Chris Burrows was born in 1947 to a mother from Barnsley and a father from Essex. He has three great loves in his eventful life: Barnsley FC, Yorkshire County Cricket Club and his wonderful wife. His wife is his rock; Yorkshire CCC is his summertime passion; the Super Reds break his heart year after year- but he wouldn’t swap them for any other team in the world. 

Excerpt from the book:

“The sales manager suddenly turned to me and said, “Don’t look out the door now, but all I can see is smoke.”  And I did look out of the door and there on the 19th floor of this very large hotel was smoke so thick you couldn’t see anything.  And we didn’t know where it had come from.  We had no idea.  Now the staff were I’m afraid typical of the Chinese.  They panicked immediately and just simply did what you shouldn’t do, because at the side of every lift it’ll tell you in a hotel ‘in case of fire do not use lift’.  The Chinese, on a rather lighter note, don’t put ‘if’ they put ‘when’.  In other words, they’re expecting a fire.  They always put ‘when there is a fire do not use the lift’.  The staff just shouted, “There’s a fire,” ran to the lift, got in the lift and went down and chanced their arm.  We were left. 

There were the four of us and I recall there were two other men there who turned out to be two Dutchmen who were on business.  And the six of us headed towards the fire exit at the far end of the corridor, which we could just about glimpse as the smoke was increasing.  It was a very funny smoke.  It smelled.  It was a very odd thing.  And we went on to the end where the fire door was and I was thinking… “Well, all fire doors should not be locked, but since we’re in China it’s a very fair bet that this fire door will be locked.”  And we got there and somebody pushed it and thank goodness it wasn’t locked, but it let us out onto the fire exit which was a series of staircases going all the way down to the ground; stone staircases with a green painted bannister to guide you.  And on each floor as you went down, in green, was the number of the floor.  Well, I, with my poor heart and what have you, was not too sure whether I could manage this. 

We thankfully were going down and not up and we began to go down and down and we put handkerchiefs over our mouths to keep out this awful smelling smoke.  And we went down and down and down and eventually we got down to – and I could see it – just – the number 8 and I felt that that was it for me.  I just felt that I couldn’t go any further.  And I remember saying to…  I don’t know where the Dutch people were, but they’d gone.  They’d disappeared.  Whether they’d gone quicker than us, I don’t know.  I presume they must have done.  And I just said to the two people who were with me, “You go on lads because I’m not going to get out of this.  I will not get out of this.”  And they were most encouraging and said, “Come on, come on, get up, get up, get up.  You must.  You must try.  Get up.” 

 

“For All the Tea in China” by Chris Burrows is available in paperback from Amazon at:

This book can also be downloaded in e-book format from Amazon at:

Press/Media Contact Details:

Grosvenor House Publishing
Tel. 0208 339 6060
E-mail: info@grosvenorhousepublishing.co.uk

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Flower Song

A celebration in poetry and pictures of the beauty of flowers

About the Book:       

In times of frenetic demand for instant gratification, where habitual haste often blinkers us from the splendour of the world around us, the author conjures an unhurried perspective on the most beautiful of all nature’s gifts, the flower.

With images captured by his camera and captioned by his words, FLOWER SONG is the third book of poetry by the author. His other two books “REFLECTIONS: Mirror of my Mind” and “REFLECTIONS: Rhyme and Reason” are both available from Amazon.

Foreword from the Author:

There are literally thousands of flowers to choose from; why did I pick these few for the purpose of this book?  My reason for the selection is that perhaps we are generally familiar with these in average modest English gardens, woodlands and meadows.  I suppose an element of personal bias, unwittingly, might have crept in.  Numbers are also somewhat restrictive considering the size of the book.

This is the second edition of the book with many more new titles added and also few original ones revised.  All photographs are my own except “Buddleia and Butterfly” beautifully captured by my granddaughter, Jessica, at the age of twelve.

Excerpt from the book:

“Daisy

Weather’s warm and fair, sky’s clear,

Spring’s in the air and Daisies appear

In the fields and on the meadows

Under the sun and in the shadows

Countless blooms and many more

Pure white petals and a golden core;

Few imposters in painted petals, colourful,

Mingling, dancing together and playful.

As the morning sun begins to rise

Daisies, slowly, unfolding their eyes

Greeting walkers and joggers joyfully,

Then, pleading ‘please tread carefully’.

Unbending and enduring plucking pains

As children, unaware, making Daisy chains;

And when the sun sets under the sky west

At day’s end eyes closed for night’s rest.”

“Flower Song” by Omar H. Malik is available in hardback from the major book retailers including Waterstones, Foyles, Blackwells and Amazon at:

This book is also available in paperback from Amazon at:

Press/Media Contact Details:

Grosvenor House Publishing
Tel. 0208 339 6060
E-mail: info@grosvenorhousepublishing.co.uk

Write Me a Letter

Cynical Wordsmith

I don’t hear that well.
Not in the sense that
I’m hard of hearing,
Which is true,
To a degree,
But more in the sense
That I hear people say
What they don’t mean
Or mean what they don’t say
And it’s hard
To hear
Truth
When it’s buried
In a vocal cacophony.

I don’t hear well
Because people
Don’t make the correct sounds,
The right noises,
For me to understand
What they mean.

Say it to me
Again
And again
And it still sounds the same.
And I don’t mean to appear
Closed off, but
You still sound the same
As the first time you yelled at me
And I don’t understand
How to unhear
What rage sounds like
In your voice.

Just write me a letter,
Please,
So I don’t have to second guess
Your body language
Or feel put on the spot
Or struggle to find words

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Death and Taxes

Cynical Wordsmith

Mind the times
They tell me.
I do,
But I don’t.

I am eternal
And least likely
To question the normative,
The everlasting emptiness.

We know the kind I am,
Disbarred and depleted,
Like so many kinsman,
So many thoughtful prophets.

We’re all alone,
In life and death,
And I’m just making do
While paying dues.

I need a benefactor
For a destitute soul,
But the endless voids
Are so hard to fill.

Please,
Help
Me
Thrive.

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House of Cards

Thankfully, this is an old poem. I’m curious to see his new poems now that he’s a dad. 🙂

Cynical Wordsmith

If life is a game
And I, a player,
Wouldn’t I know the rules?
Wouldn’t the goal be defined?
This isn’t fun anymore.
This doesn’t feel fun anymore.
The chance and folly,
The stacked deck and two faced coins,
They’re laughing,
Laughing
At the house of cards I’ve built.
The wind rests
Every day and night,
But your breath is heavy
And acrid.

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Feeling Down

Cynical Wordsmith

The depths of human emotion
Are endless.
Lurking in the shadows
Or shining in the light
They exist in all kinds,
All combinations,
Waiting to be felt.

There are moments in life
When each are called.
Sometimes expected,
Sometimes unwelcome,
Fickle minds as their masters,
With idealistic whispers
Or animalistic roars.

We reach and feel down,
Deep into those depths,
Grasping desperately
For that which is needed.
Despair and courage,
Hatred and Love,
All those things
That live within us.

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