Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Shrieks and shouts are music unplugged

                                                                                    Attribution: Alexander Houghton
Image: Courtesy of MLMM (here)

The 8 of 10 given words:
small children kiss two crowd hour slips learn

Untold joy in having small children around
Always the urge to catch one to kiss and hug
Like twinkling stars of the night ever present
Shrieks and shouts are music unplugged

Get two together they readily communicate
In a crowd they'll bring the house down
Boisterous and noisy they sometimes irritate
Expected of them and not to be frowned upon

They throw tantrums in their hour of need
Minders smack to instill discipline of emotions
In reality a child of whatever bids often slips
The minders are the ones to learn compassion

For Vinay's A Prompt Each Day Prompt #31
Neeraj's at MLMM's Photo Challenge #67 - see-saw
Kerry's The Tuesday Platform at Real Toads

Monday, June 29, 2015

Encroaching end of summer

                                                                                               Attribution: Toms River
Image: End of Summer Beach Scene (here)

Been blistering hot
Outdoor activities checked
Stragglers on the beach

Some misty mornings
Low chirping of restless birds
Calls of shorter days

Bathed in copper tones
Changing colors set the mood
Abandoned downwards


For Chev's CARPE DIEM #766  -  departing summer

Sunday, June 28, 2015

I'd like my drink clean! MF


Image: Courtesy of Grandma's

Some antisocial guy's
been nosing around here
where they don't belong
I'd like my drink clean
With the rubbish in there
I can't even gargle

(140 characters)

For Linda's Grandma's Goulash Succinctly Yours
week #223 for a Micro Fiction  with the word  - gargle

Saturday, June 27, 2015

to create a fortune westward bound

                                                                                           Attribution: Mauro Cateb
Image Gold and Diamond Ring (here)

just where does the wind blow
on an early summer morning
blinkered looks that sadly glow
empty pockets sincerely hoping

expectations run high quietly vying
to create a fortune westward bound
'go west young man' constantly goading
where riches-lining pavements are found

some get bored will sadly discover
unwittingly they let slip opportunities
but those who painstakingly endeavor
will rise atop a pile of sanity

tremendous luck will give a hand
but luck alone flows a trifle slow
nothing like using the head and mind
as working smart steals the show

For Vinay's hosting A Prompt a Day #28
Set the Challenge Sunday #4  -  the westbound train
and Mary's at PU's Poetry Pantry #258

Friday, June 26, 2015

They were oblivious of the crowd

                                                                               Attribution: Till Krech
Image: Set for the Occasion (here)

The 10 given words:
enjoy candle dinner week song 
live money late pray rise 

They enjoyed candle-light dinner for this week
How very romantic it was
Reminiscent of courting days before
when they were younger

How he had even picked the occasions
to throw a surprise on her
How they laughed in between songs
in the posh restaurant
They were oblivious of the crowd
who even clapped and wished them well
when told it was their anniversary

This time there was no crowd
Just the two them
to enjoy the candle-light dinner
at home

They had to live with it
Repairs to the car took a chunk of their money
They were late in payments for their utilities
They prayed it would not happen again
Otherwise it would be candle-light dinner
when supplies were disconnected
for non-payment
They would have to rise
to the occasion in future

For Vinay's hosting at A Prompt Each Day
with Prompt 27 Wordle #4

Nights full of twinkling stars

                                                                              Attribution: Jalal Volker
Image:Looking Up the Ceiling (here)

As he forlornly laid back in bed
Nights full of twinkling stars
he could only imagine
out there in the open skies

But she had left
Empty white ceiling
stared down at him

(33 words)

Note: To write a poem of not exceeding
33 words inspired by the word nights

For Vinay's hosting at - A Prompt Each Day
Prompt 26 In a Flash #2

Thursday, June 25, 2015

What are we to pull back from


Image: City of Worms in Germany (here)
(Photographer: Armin K├╝belbeck, CC-BY-SA, Wikimedia Commons)

All the given words were used:
hear ye thou to spit black fire that not to 
flow what to pull man old mother hand 
worm who bark ashes to give I this

Hear ye! Where art thou?
To spit black venom
Fire away then it is that easy!
So, not to flow

What are we to pull back from
man, woman and old mother?

We hand it to the worm
who to bark and
who to reduce to ashes

To give not to take
I set this mood for solace
in numbers

(60 words)

Note: To use as many of the given words and
to create a poem of not exceeding 60 words

For Words count with Mama Zen
at Real Toads

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Used to receive the snail mail

                                                                       Attribution: Bundesarchiv, Bild 
                                                                                          101I-134-0793-32 / Knobloch, 
                                                                                          Ludwig / CC-BY-SA
Image: Writing letters the old fashioned way (here)

Sunday Whirligig: the 11 of 12 given words:
idea, letters, mailbox, sitting, book, 
hands, walk way,records shop,run, 

Theme Thursday: the given word
fear

Might set off for a good idea
Ought not to harbor a fear
Thoughts of hand-written letters
Extended to friends and neighbors

Used to receive the snail mail
But then email came into style
The mailbox was now pretty empty
It enhanced a sense of sobriety

Sitting with a book in the hands
Reading the old fashioned way again
One could walk to the record-shop
To enjoy a run of old tunes of sorts

Certainly a fun way to be happy
To counter the rot of being sedentary

For MMT's hosting at Sunday Whirligig #13 and
Theme Thursday

chilled out and nervous

                                                                      Attribution: Casium137T
Image: Smiley's thumb-down! (here)

3WW with:
lump puzzled nervous

Cleared lump in the throat
Puzzled it turned sour felt
chilled out and nervous
Checked its sensibility
Funny it was all a joke

It took all kinds in
this world which was already
hellish and sinful
Could one be faulted then with
anger unduly provoked

Tanka for Thomg's hosting
at 3WW week #433

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Bewitching doe-like come hither

                                                                                   Attribution: Vijaymoreb1
Image: A Face without Luster (here)

Note: The painting shows a sad woman
There are no more colors in her life
A 'sun'and a 'moon' are shown where
once her life was as bright but now
it's dark as night - Wiki

The given 10 words:
Tea Eyes Stories, Ancient, Dance, 
Heart Clue, Voice, Behind , Nature

Bewitching doe-like come hither
Looks that calm the nerves
While sitting having tea
Who however much he tries
cannot take his eyes  off her

Stories abound ancient
or otherwise
Revolving around eyes

Excitement is in the air
Lovely eyes of lovers meet
Dancing in tandem
with the bouncing heart
When nothing else matter

Most revealing though
On occasions where clues
are superfluous and revealing

Teary eyed perhaps the
aftermath of a little tiff
when opinions differ
Tears flowing like reversal
monsoon rains that
flood the country-side

Red eyes and seething with anger
following heated exchanges
Or lying at the pub's door
Still blood-shot red and disoriented
Had one too many

Worst it may have taken blows
Blue and black rings around the eyes
with incoherent gruff voice
behind a puffed up face

Nature is so forgiving
That emotions are translated
very succinctly in changes
of texture and luster
Eyes, one so tender and the first
spied of a person
hurt happy or grieving

For Vinay's Mid-week Wordle Prompt #4 and
ABHRA's at d'Verse's Poetic: -  the sinful monsoon

As different as chalk and cheese

                                                                              Attribution: The Waiting by Zemotion
Image: Courtesy of MLMM (here)

A loved one gone suddenly
Crying shame to admit
A tinge of regret was apparent
For not having sacrificed time
For each other

It might not be a demise
But just gone from sight
Pangs of loneliness
Impinged hard on the soul
Emptiness impacted on the self
Self assurance departed and lost

Missing from view
Enough to trigger off the longings
A substitute might appear
To fill the gap awhile
They might be similar in demeanor
traits liking and dislikes
Superficially yes but the difference
Could be discerned

As different as chalk and cheese
Not just to the naked eyes
But more from the inner feelings

There she was waiting
Out of nowhere
Apparition-like morbid
Playing tricks on the eyes
Was she for real?
Yearnings for her
Could be cruel
Imaginations gone wild!

For Neeraj's Photo Challenge #66 at MLMM and
Vinays hosting at Prompt Each Day #23 with the
Phrase -  chalk and cheese and
Marian's at  Real Toad's Tuesday Platform

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Ode to morning news

                                                             Attribution: Pedro Ribeiro Simoes
Image: Browsing the old-fashioned way (here)

A daily ritual
almost clock-work
stepped out in the cold
fittingly with sense of purpose
dribbling at the mouth
hungry as a lion

pulled it out menacingly
from the box
where earlier it was stuffed into
by the news-boy
one who was out in the morning mist
almost alone at the crack of dawn
trying to earn a few bucks

walked back towards the house
but hesitated a little
stopped in his tracks
still hungry for the news
could not wait to be in the house

flipped a few pages
incessantly browsing
walked a few more steps
but this time slowly
eyes still focused in the open pages
walked on slowly still
right to the door-steps

that was how it had been
without fail
in the early mornings
through the years
but not anymore

early mornings
on normal days now
no more rush to the door
relaxed and leisurely
no more tensed but now satisfied
no more rushing for the news
done that
googled for them
late last night!

For Karin's hosting for Real Toad's
Sunday Mini Challenge - Ode to the Quotidian and
Mary's at PU's Poetry Pantry #257



Saturday, June 20, 2015

Unexpected like summer rain

                                                                                Artist: Ferdinand von Wright (1877)
Image: Summer Landscape (here)

A long day dreamers
had a siesta lazily
as nature forgave

She walked in slowly
Unexpected like summer
rain but most welcomed

Colors of spring gave
way to rewards of efforts
summer vacations

For Chev's CARPE DIEM #759  -  Long day/ Summer Solstice

Friday, June 19, 2015

'Cold as winter even in summer'

                                                   Attribution: US Federal Govt
Image: Mug-shot of Robert Stroud (1920)  (here)

                                                                             Attribution: US Dept of Justice
Image: Mug-shot of Robert Stroud (1951) (here)

Note: 1 Robert Stroud (1890  - 1963) Jailed at 19
in 1909 and was never released. Died in jail at age 73

Note: 2 He was variously described as:
of superior intellect, and became a first-rate
ornithologist and author despite a major part
of his life in solitary confinement.
Became the subject of a 1955 book by
T E. Gaddis Birdman of Alcatraz which 
was later adapted for film of the same
name with Burt Lancaster as Stroud  -  Wiki

Note: 3  Alcatraz had been cited as
one of the most haunted in America.
Mark Twain said after visiting it, as
'being as cold as winter, even in 
the summer months'  -  Wiki

The given 8 of 10 words:
winter letters chill coat 
ghost dusk young wet

'Cold as winter even in summer'
Commentary from a man of letters
Can never be better expressed

Sends a chill under the coat to
be told of ghostly endeavors behind
closed doors of prison cells

Dusk need not be awaited
Even a young wet behind the ears
can well comprehend the eerie
feel of one in solitary confinement

Yet for all the wrongs
Stroud was hailed as an authority
on birds despite the life of deprivation

Was accorded scarce resources
but scraped through meager funds
from sale of his canaries for
'his scientific studies'

With freedom curtailed
he lived and died
behind bars!

For Vinay's  Prompt Each Day -
Weekend Wordle #3

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Dancing in the dark

                                                                                         Attribution: Gabriel Pollard
Image: Apparition-like Sparklers (here)

The given words:
blood creature dancing dark dreadful gun 
kiss penny praying plague seduce tarot
levitate (rise into the air in a way that
appears to be magical)

Blood curdling creature
It's hair-raising, spine-chilling
Dancing in the dark

Dreadful experience
Just as a gun to the head
Time to kiss good-bye

Penny for your thoughts
Praying hard to levitate
up high in the clouds

Sadly often plagued
by the tarot's curse seduced
to a complete wreck

For MLMM's Wordle # 166

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Begging for an answer

                                                                               Attribution: Anamix 257
Image: A Gentle Kiss (here)

The 9 of 10 given words:
kiss death begging walk sun 
ever nothing garden remains 

The kiss of death
Begging for an answer
from not just a walk in the sun

What was it
What happened
Was there ever one?

Nothing less than in
the garden of Gethsemane
That was where it happened
The night before His crucifixion
From Judas' kiss that betrayed Him

Now it remained incessantly to describe

Something that is ultimately ruinous, destructive, or fatal: 
A relationship or action that makes failure or ruin inevitable
An act or relationship that has fatal or disastrous consequences

It covered the whole gamut of what could go wrong

Even divorce was once described as a
political kiss of death"  by Ellen Goodman.

Unless after a kiss of death
one literally got devoured  by a
Black Widow as a coup de grace
it could dance on every one's lips!
Devouring one so dear was game enough
Food for thought!


Note: From Judas' kiss that betrayed Jesus
in the garden of Gethsemane (Mark 14:44-45)

For Vinay's hosting at A Prompt a Day #17
Mid-week Wordle #3 and
Mary's at d'Verse Open Link #151

Greenery waving lightly

                                       Attribution: Eric Guinther
Image: Tree Fern (here)

Spectacle to see
Greenery waving lightly
Breezy mountain air

Magical wonder
Standing tall in cool mornings
Ferns in the distance
Some waved off as a nuisance
Back-breaking weeding back home

For Chev's CARPE DIEM  Tokubetsudesu #48  -  ferns


Monday, June 15, 2015

Let it not be said....

                                                                                    Artist: Vincent van Gogh (1882)
Image: Man Holding his Head in Frustration (here)
(Kroller Mueller Museum)

MLMM's given words:
delve tonight murky reservoir marinate commission stricture dregs frame tape lurid 
magniloquent (speaking or expressed in a lofty or grandiose style; pompous;bombastic; boastful.)

Let it not be said
That to delve into it
tonight will make it turn murky
That the reservoir of knowledge
allowed to marinate overnight
should turn sour

Let it not be said
That a stricture that narrow
can commission dregs
of worry framed and taped
That all in lurid details blown
magniloquent for
all to ogle gleefully

Let it not be said
That Writer's Block is that crippling
That one needs a diversion!

It is stressful but surmountable
and deserves a fair hearing.


Note: To overcome or to get over it one
solution is to go to Magnetic Poetry (here)

For Georgia's hosting at MLMM's Wordle #65 and
Kerry's at Tuesday Platform at Real Toads


Sunday, June 14, 2015

It may sprout some buds

                                                                                            Attribution: Sarolta Ban
Image: Courtesy of Tess' Mag (here)

Not wishing to hang up
Let it be there
May sprout some buds
Any greenery is fair

It will take as long
To mend my heart
It is where it belongs
But now broken apart

As much as broken pieces
That ruined my day
Might appear frivolous
But my mind's in disarray

Faith uppermost in feelings
Beautiful flowers will appear
To whisper sweet nothings
A pleading for me to hear

Rekindle the fire in you
Let the flames roar
Not something new
Seen it before

For Tess' hosting at Magpie Tales # 274 and
Vinay's Prompt #15 wordplay #3 - fire

Saturday, June 13, 2015

What a make-over! - MF


Image: Courtesy of Grandma's Goulash (here)

What a make-over! You stand tall
You look new, proud and perfumed
Never would have thought. To think
we salvaged you from the jumble sale

(140 characters)

I thought I spied a
birdie up in there.
What a jumble in my mind
I have been stressed out
lately. Perhaps chasing
a mouse is a lot easier.

(140 characters)

For Linda's hosting at GG's Succinctly Yours
week #221 for a Micro fiction not exceeding
140 characters and to include the word  -  jumble
and Mary's at PU's Poetry Pantry #256

Submerged in sorrow

                                                                                         Attribution: Jorge Lascar
Image: Blue Skies and Starry night
over the Kilimanjaro (here)

Unrequited feel
Unrelenting stillness of
love gone asunder

Submerged in sorrow
Lost in darkened abyss with
lingering regret

Nocturnal journey
Devoid of light but twinkling
stars for assurance

For Chev's CARPE DIEM  -  stillness

Friday, June 12, 2015

Heavenly promise but....!

                                                                                                        User: Oscark
Image: Mount Kinabalu view from Kundasan (here)

Cool air from highlands
Envelops meadows below
Heavenly promise

Luxuriant green but
Small creatures magnanimous
in freedom's wild romps

Ruefully crying
Life lost untold destruction
Rare earthquake endured

Note: Recent earthquake on Mount Kinabalu caused 18 deaths

For Chev's CARPE DIEM 754  - meadows

it leaves one breathless

                                                                                                   Attribution:  ZCU
Image: A descendant of Newton's apple tree, planted in the
Botanical Gardens, the University of Tokyo, Japan (here)

From deep in the spring
clear reflections rise to meet
falling plum petals                       (Southard)
it leaves one breathless to see
them float gracefully to earth      (Hank)

From deep in the spring
clear reflections rise to meet
falling plum petals                       (Southard)
luckily not an apple
that it could create history           (Hank)

For Chev's CARPE DIEM Tan Renga
Challenge #89 with Southard

Thursday, June 11, 2015

picture mirrors image, image mirrors picture

                                                                                 Attribution: CE Photo Uwe Aranas
Image: Mirror Image in Line (here)

yes
now brewing
picture mirrors image
experience overwhelming
nice feeling
simple starts

is it easy
some with rhyming
trying perhaps
quirks seen plainly
somewhat acceptable
yes it is

is it yes
acceptable somewhat
plainly seen quirks
perhaps trying
rhyming with some
easy it is

starts simple
feeling nice
overwhelming experience
image mirrors picture
brewing now
yes

Note: A palindrome is a word (or sentence) that reads the same backwards as forward.
Hank had chosen the 'word' version styled against starkat's Artistic Creations (here)

For Mary's hosting at d'Verse's MTB  -  Palindrome poetry

A storm is brewing

                                                                      Author: Alfred Tennyson
Image: The Manuscript of  Lord Tennyson's
'The Thustle'  (here)

Sunday Whirligig - the given words:
storm, alarming, speak, razor, gossip,
secret,bathe, sour, thirsty, think, poem,bronze 

A storm is brewing
Gets to be alarming

What can be the matter
To speak as sharp as a razor

To gossip yet in open secret
hiding under a cloak in shreds

To bathe in stark reality
Sour in mourning but thirsty

Just think
It stinks

Writing a poem is not easy
It is plain to see

Do not expect a gold in part
A bronze will do for a start

For MMT's hosting of Sunday Whirligig #11

Gliding gracefully

                                                                                                 Attribution: Juan Lacruz
Image: Aquila Adalberti in Flight (here)

Gliding gracefully
Belies might of a lethal
killing machine that
swoops silently from above
Prey without a fighting chance

Prying eyes hidden
from view ostensibly to
offer assistance
Eagle-like beware those known
to wreak havoc on others

For CHev's CARPE DIEM #752  -  eagles

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Time is cruelly efficient!

                                                                                 Attribution: Arne Nordmann
Image: Spring-cover Pocket Watch (here)

It held one by the throat
Stood still?
Not on your life
Like it or not it moved at its own pace
Waited for no one
That was how it conducted itself

Cruelly efficient no holds barred
But procrastination managed to steal it
Still that was not its problem

How it flew!
Many were just taken aback
Disappointed for not having utilized it
Depressed for having neglected it
Lamented for having ignored it

Ganged up with deadlines
To send some into a frenzy
Blaming it for having so little
But the smart ones
were able to manage it well
Within a designated frame

The best option was to kill it
To become productive
Or just to have a fling

Killing time, how nice!

For Sumana's hosting at Poet United's
Midweek Motif  -  time




Sunflowers by the Masters

                                                                     Artist: Vincent van Gogh (1889)
Image: Twelve Sunflowers in a Vase (here)

                                                                                  Artist: Paul Gauguin (1888)
Image:  Vincent van Gogh Painting Sunflowers (here)

                                                                          Artist: Claude Monet (1881)
Image: Bouquet of Sunflowers (here)

                                                                             Artist: Anthony van Dyke (1633)
Image: Self-Portrait with Sunflowers (here)

3WW the given words:
blemish erect lob-sided

No blemish van Gogh's
obsession with sunflowers
legacy well known

Erect pointed to
the sun not lob-sided but
a daily movement
Not missed by the old masters
The art world all the richer

For Chev's CARPE DIEM tokubetsudesu
#47 -  flowers, a haiku and a tanka
and Thomg's 3WW # 431 with the given words


Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Black and White with Shades of Grey!

                                                    Attribution: Yusuf Hashim

                                                            Attribution: Yusuf Hashim

                                                                                            Attribution: Yusuf Hashim
These are snapshots at Scoresby Sound, Ostgronland,
Greenland. This is one of the beautiful locations rarely
seen by the outside world where Yusuf and his buddies
were holed up in the course of their Photo Safari
expedition to Greenland and Iceland

Frenzy of conflicts
Troubled world on the outside
but soothing Greenland

Colorful but still
happy to be bathed in shades
close to black and white

Yacht in the distance
Intrudes but undaunted in
peaceful cool flourish


For Grace's hosting at d'Verse
Poetics: Black and White

Monday, June 8, 2015

Alex Cavanaugh - Best-selling Author

Check out Alex Cavanaugh (here)  -  'my interests range from books and movies to
music and games". Alex is the co-host of the A to Z Challenge from 2011-2015. Alex is also the author of Amazon Best Sellers CassaStar, CassaFire, and CassaStorm. His latest book, Dragon of the Stars launched on April 07 2015 (here) has already won accolades and perhaps well on the way to being another best seller too.

Alex featured Hank on June 08, 2015 on the incredible journeys of Yusuf Hashim at the Blog from A to Z Challenge (here) It is reproduced below:

Monday, June 8, 2015

Themes That Rocked – Traveling the Globe with Photographer and Explorer, Yusuf Hashim


Hank Kaykuala is a poet and an author. Hank's books can be found (here) and (here)

During the Challenge, he highlighted some of his amazing poetry. But part of his theme included highlighting the travels and explorations of his friend, Yusuf Hashim (here) It was fascinating! 

                                                                                    Attribution: Yusuf Hashim
The Modern Day Explorer - The Man Himself, Yusuf Hashim

Part of your theme for the Challenge is the 'Modern Day Explorer' – why did you choose to highlight Yusuf Hashim? 

Yusuf is unique for two reasons: 

Firstly, Yusuf Hashim is a Gypsetter, and an accomplished photographer. His photos are not only technically and visually fantastic, but the stuff that he shoots are mainly from locations that many of us usually only dream about. Often-times, Yusuf accesses these locations usually by directly driving his 4x4 go-anywhere Toyota Land Cruiser. Yusuf drives his vehicle across continents for photography as regularly as we fly from continent to continent. He’s driven overland from London to Malaysia not once but several times. He’s driven from Malaysia through China and over the Himalayas to India. He’s driven from Cape Town to Cairo, and from Cairo across the Sahara Desert to Casablanca. He’s driven right around South America from Buenos Aires going north to Uruguay, Brazil,Paraguay, Bolivia, Peru , Chile, Argentina round to Ushuaia in Terra del Fuego and finished by reentering Buenos Aires from the South. His idea of fun is to sail in a schooner in the Scoresby Sound of Greenland. And when he wants a photo of an active Volcano, for example, Mt Erta Ale’ which is Africa’s most active volcano, he actually climbed it and camped overnight on its crater rim above the boiling lava below. He jumped the bungee over Victoria Falls on his 65th Birthday. And last week, (May 18, 2015) he’s just celebrated his 70th birthday in the Todra Gorge of the Atlas Mountains of Morocco. 

And secondly, not many people are aware that Yusuf retired 15 years ago, as Retail Marketing Director of Shell in Malaysia. After a sterling Jet-setting Corporate career in one of the world’s largest Oil Company, he metamorphosed into a Gyp-setting accomplished Photographer after retirement. 

What is the Vacation of a Lifetime

Yusuf’s idea of a vacation is ….getting hot by climbing 4 active Volcanoes in two weeks - 2 in Java in the first week (Mt Ijen and Mt Bromo) and another 2 in Africa (Mt Erta Ale’ and Mt Dalol in the Danakil Depression of Ethiopia) in the second week. The night time temperatures in the Danakil Depression is a searing 48°C. And to wind down and cool down in the third week …. flying to Iceland to shoot the Aurora Borealis in the -15°C Lake Myvatn Volcanic Region in Central Iceland. And perhaps sailing in the Scoresby Sound of Greenland after that. 

Have you gone exploring with Yusuf in the past?  

No, perhaps one day.

You posted some of Yusuf’s incredible photos. Which ones were your favorite? 

All of them are great as they were snapped not only with the heart but ably accomplished with his technical skills. Hank will choose those which are rarely possible and difficult to come by (like the boy with the AK47, the passenger peering out the train window) and opportunistic ones (like the family going for the shared community bath where the elder girl had a toothbrush in her hands) A few are included here including the boy with the AK47. These are of a high resolution format. 

Yusuf has taken people all over the world on photo safaris. What countries seem to be his favorite? 

The flavor of 2014 was AFRICA – specifically Ethiopia. Last year Yusuf did 3 photo safaris covering the entire length and breadth of Ethiopia, which Yusuf says is the unpolished jewel of Africa. After decades of civil strife and political instability following the removal of Emperor Haile Selassie, Ethiopia has recently become safe to visit . Ethiopia has more than 50 Ethnic tribes who are living much like their ancestors did hundreds of years ago.. Yusuf’s photos chronicling the little known tribes of Africa, are like pages out of a National Geographic Magazine. 

                                                                            Attribution: Yusuf Hashim
Yusuf Hashim says: 
This is a Mursi boy, who couldn't be more than 12 years old, with an AK47 Kalashnikov on his shoulder. He demanded money when I shot this photo of him. I didn't want to argue with that globally acclaimed widow-maker, so I gave him 20 Birrs for this photo. That's equivalent to about 50 cents. 

The flavor for this year seems to be Cuba, Iceland and Greenland. Yusuf took three groups of people to Cuba earlier this year. He says you must visit Cuba before Cuba warms up to the American tourists, and everything is spoiled by modernization. Cuba is like a state frozen in time, with delightful Spanish period buildings around every corner. Cubans are still very warm to tourists.The foreseen influx of American tourists in the near future, will probably transform Cuba into the usual tourist traps like in Egypt China and Morocco. Then he took two groups to the freezing permanent Icecaps, glaciers and waterfalls of South Iceland, followed by North and Central Volcanic Region of the Island. In September this year (2015) he’s returning to Iceland which will be the appetizer for a Sailing Expedition in Greenland. 

                                                                                          Attribution: Yusuf Hashim
Yusuf Hashim says: 
The streets in Cuba are still full of beautifully preserved huge gas-guzzling 5 liter, 50 year old American Automobiles

Tell us about the loneliest road Yusuf has ever traveled. 

Yusuf told me the loneliest road in the world has to be the Routa 40. It is about 3000 kilometers from Patagonia to Ushuaia alongside the foothills of the Andes, across the Glacial Wilderness of the Glacial parks of Southern Chile and Argentina, with the Tres Torres and Mt Fitzroy on one side and Mt Aconcagua on the other, and leading to Ushuaia, the southern-most point of South America. When he drove around South America along this route, for days he saw only 5 or 10 vehicles apart from his convoy of 15 vehicles. Yusuf says, Patagonia is one of the places you must go to before you go to meet your maker. Here’s a sample of the photo opportunities in Patagonia…

                                                                                          Attribution: Yusuf Hashim
Yusuf Hashim says: 
Ruta 40, or Route 40 in Argentina, reputedly the loneliest road in the world. For nearly 2000 km, I counted less than 50 other vehicles on this god-forsaken track running alongside the Andes from la Puna until reaching the Glaciers of Patagonia

Where can we find out more about Yusuf? 

Yusuf is presently rebuilding a new personal web page, so for more current information, check out his Facebook page (here) his Photo Safari Website (here) and his books (here)

Thanks, Hank! And I hope you get to join Yusuf on an adventure soon.

Thanks Alex, hope so, yes!

For Marian's hosting at the 
Tuesday Platform, Real Toads 

nature playing tricks!

                                                                Atrribution: Grand Parc
Image: Stonehenge heritage (here)

Landscape dotted with
precariously balanced stone
structures, whodunit?
Some intelligent beings
or just nature playing tricks

Note: Stonehenge could have been a burial ground.
The dating of cremated remains found on the site
indicate that deposits contain human bone from as
early as 3000 BC  -  Wiki

For Chev's CARPE DIEM
Time Glass #30  -  summer solstice

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Rivalry all having the makings of battle


Image: 1: Top of the Swing.
Hank's Acrylic Painting on Hard-board



Image: 2  The Finish.
Hank in Competition Years Ago
(Hank sports a tummy then and even now! Urrgh...)

MLMM: Tall Order for a Prompt this Week:
This week I want you to share a poem, drawing, 
story, photo, sculpture, etc that you’ve put your 
soul into creating. Something that touches on 
the deepest most vulnerable parts of yourself. 
It need not be something new or something 
created specifically for this challenge

Note to Tess: Apologies Ma'am for not using your
prompt photo

Golf Note: Hank has not been golfing lately but is taking
this as an invitation to relate back to Hank's two loves in
keeping with the prompt

One gets all eager even the night before
Somewhat akin to preparing for a journey
The bag gets a once over all accounted for
Clothes socks shoes and golf-balls all ready

Even a good night's sleep gets to be a bother
The psyche of battle gets one all worked-up
Like a life and death thing to be prepared for
Mentally provoked before reaching the Club

Rivalry all having the makings of battle
Wanting to get the better of the opponents
Stressful mental game more than physical
Golf is still though a game for gentlemen

For MLMM's Writing Prompt #110  -  Meraki
and Tess' hosting at Magpie Tales #273

Saturday, June 6, 2015

visual privilege excites more

                                                                                Attribution: mnfroliger
Image: The Blue Yellow and Red series (here)

Note: The artist has not even given a title to his art.
It is just one in a series. That itself is creating a mystery.
Furthermore there are no hues of  'red' when the series
calls for it. This appears to be deliberate to add more
to the mystery

Quote: The job of the artist is always
to deepen the mystery. - Francis Bacon
Read more Quotes (here)

Looking at art ignites excitement
more so an abstract

But visual privilege excites more
One not only sees but also reads
the artist's mind

What is the motive
What is it about
One creates a picture in
one's mind to match

Beauty of interaction with inanimate
objects adds to the mystery
One's imagination runs wild

(55 words)

For Kerry's hosting of Flash 55 Plus at Real Toads
with a suggestion to include a Quote for inspiration
and Mary's at PU's Poetry Pantry #255

sudden musical drama

                                                                              Attribution: Tristan Nitot
Image: The Eiffel at Sunrise
taken from the Trocadero (here)

Perfect timing for
any day at break of dawn
The sun's rays peek out

Chirpings in the trees
sudden musical drama
breaks loose for new day

Dawn brings a new day
but nothing's changed for many
Homeless trudge along

For Chev's CARPE DIEM #750  -  dawn

Providence's guidance assured

                                                                                 Artist: Leon Benett
Image: Canoe in Art  - Dangerous waters (here)

shamanic journey
a red dragonfly comes
to guide the canoe    -  © Jane Reichhold
the fast rapids smile knowing
Providence's guidance assured

shamanic journey
a red dragonfly comes
to guide the canoe   -  © Jane Reichhold
weather permitting trauma
of chattering teeth reduced

shamanic journey
a red dragonfly comes
to guide the canoe   -  © Jane Reichhold
nature fulfills its part to
let the bands of birds rejoice

For Chev's CARPE DIEM's Tan Renga Challenge #88
with haiku from Jane Reichhold's "shamanic journey"

Friday, June 5, 2015

a variety of shapes sizes and colors.

The Hibiscus is one of a species of flowers with a variety of shapes sizes and colors. It can even be considered as a 'friendly flower' as it is typically opened up in full bloom eagerly awaiting the honey bees. It further facilitates pollination as the stamen stalk is long, the stamens are readily seen and the stigma strategically placed on top.Hank brings it out here in keeping with the Susie's theme of Floral Explosion - the variety speaks for itself.

 
                                              Attribution: Nvineeth
Image: 1 Hibiscus rosa-sinensis (here)
Hibiscus as one 
normally sees it as a
National Flower
(The Hibiscus is the National Flower of Malaysia)


                                                                                              Attribution: MG
Image: 2  Yellow hibiscus (here)
Seen all the year round
a flower not restricted
by the four seasons


                  Attribution: Kurt Stueber
Image:3 Hibiscus moscheuthus (here)                                                                       
Bathed the countryside
With variety of colors
Pleasing to the eyes


                                                                                     Attribution: Cereales K
Image: 4 Hibiscus syriacus (here)
Bluish with red hues
A rare find that stands out well
Typically shaped


                                                                              Attribution: Cary Bass
Image: 5 Hibiscus schizopetalus (Japanese Lantern) (here)
Japanese Lantern
Hanging as how it should be
With unique petals

For Susie's hosting at Real ToadsBits Of Inspiration ~ Floral Explosion and
Bjorn's at d'Verse Open Link #150