Friday, May 19, 2017


This is another poem from a prompt, using the words,rubik's cube, demonized and carrot. It turned out pretty good considering those words!!


Caitlin with the carrot-colored hair
Went off to visit a witch so fair.
Seeking help, her problem, profound.
The witch’s familiar was a Basset Hound!

“What? No black cat?” Caitlin asked.
“Sadly, my cat was possessed! Aghast,
A corrupt thing, most surely demonized.
So I changed her into this hound so fine.”

“What, my sweet,might I do for you?”
While cooing to her grey morning dove.
“I have looked far and wide,” the lass replied.
“But cannot find my one true love.”

The witch rose to stir her cauldron stew
Dug deep into a magical, tapestry bag
And handed Caitlin a rubic’s cube
Which made the lovelorn girl quite mad!

“I beseech your help and receive a toy?”
“Ah, my beauty, it will bring you joy.
” For when solved, the rubic’s squares,
Will bring the one for whom you care.”

The witchcraft worked on the very first try,
As Caitlin sat alone in the park.
A handsome, dark-eyed man ambled by
And made a quizzical remark.

“Excuse me Miss,” he said and sat
Beside her on the wooden bench.
“You seem to need a hand with that.”
His eyes took in the lovely wench.

Moments passed with no retreat,
As he twisted, turned, then it was done.
The rubic’s cube was now complete
Caitlin sighed, her heartstrings sung.

Far in the distance howled a sound
From a most special Basset Hound.
The witch pulled up her blood-red cowl
And smiled; true love once more, found.

The End

The Beginning

Tuesday, April 18, 2017



Welcome again friends and newcomers to A Writer's Journey at Staten Island, NY!! Today's post will give you an even better understanding of my two books.

Today, until midnight, there will be time to enter the contest by leaving a comment. Two winners, randomly selected, will win either . . . And the Whippoorwill Sang or The Cat Who Wanted a Dog. For Those already having these books, I will substitute another ebook I think you will like. This contest for Rave Review Book Club runs through April ending with a super grand prize. Go to the site and browse other author's as well.

I hope you will enjoy this interview of Noelle by Nancy Jardine. I have written the answers to Nancy's questions based upon things that Noelle said while alive. Her ending statements are what I believe she would have said and felt, using author intrusion and also things she said to her nieces and nephews after passing on from this realm.   

How does a mother explain love?
How does a mother let her child go?
A child so beautiful, funny and bright
Who breathes life into every moment,
Draws bird pictures
Does cartwheels in autumn leaves
Sings down country lanes
                                                        There is no explanation

...And The Whippoorwill Sang  Interview By Nancy Jardine

On Welcome Wednesday I have opened my blog to many different sorts of writing. Sometimes it has been my own, sometimes guest posts from an author, and at other times it has been an author interview.

Today, I have a friend visiting from the US who has brought along a character from her memoir...And The Whippoorwill Sang. So, in a sense, it's a character interview. But it is a poignantly different type of investigation.

Micki Peluso's account is a recreation of her own experience, the loss of a young teenage daughter a main theme of the writing. It demonstrates how Micki, and her family, have dealt with such sad bereavement.

Doing a character interview can be a fun thing to do that's, often, only vaguely challenging. When the character is from a story that happened in real life, and died in tragic circumstances, it's quite another kind of test for the author to recreate. 
I'm so pleased that Micki Peluso has allowed us to have a little glimpse of her daughter, Noelle Marie Peluso. As such, Noelle is not really speaking in the present; more like how her life was many years ago before her time on earth was abruptly and shockingly ended and how she connects to her family situation now. Think of the answers being given for both a time in the past, and from a perspective of present interaction.

Welcome to my part of the world, Noelle. Let's get to know you a little bit. 
Can you describe yourself in only six words for my readers, please, Noelle?
I am 14 and in love.

That is quite a description and you seem to be having a fun time! Where are you currently living?
I live in Williamsport, Pennsylvania in this great haunted 100-year-old farmhouse with my parents, five brothers and sisters and ghosts. I love it here, except for the bats that single me out.
Had you been there all your life?
No, it seems all my life we just keep moving. I even wrote a poem about it. Each time a new baby arrives we must move to a bigger house, and then mom insisted we leave our house and friends in Long Island, New York and move to Las Vegas, Nevada because of the drug situation. My little sister, Nicole called it ‘Lost Vegas,’ but me and Kelly, my sister and best friend, hated it there. My oldest sister, Kimber, was seventeen and loved it. Mike, sixteen and Dante, fifteen liked to explore the desert and their high school was cool. My school was in a trailer and I hated it. We were younger then: Nicole only four, me eight, Kelly, eleven. Mom kinda liked Las Vegas because her best friend lived there, but daddy, like me, also hated it because he couldn't find a high paying job like in New York. 
How do you mainly spend your days just now?
Well, we all have chores but I usually skip out on mine. I’m the clown of the family, tricking my brothers and sisters to do my jobs while I keep them laughing at my TV imitations. I do a great Groucho Marx.  Kelly got me a job with her, babysitting for a bunch of kids. Course I got Kelly to do the work while I played with the little toddlers and babies. I earned money to buy my new school clothes. Mom sews a lot of our clothes and Kim, Kelly, and I love them, but Nicole wants ‘store bought’ clothes. Mom says someone must've switched babies at birth. Nicole agrees with her.
You're only barely into your teens but what career path do you think would be a good one to follow?
At 14 there's not much else besides babysitting to do to make money, but I want to be a lawyer when I grow up and have six kids just like my mother. She's the best mom a girl could have and I want to be just like her. She never got to go to college but I will – I have great dreams for my life especially since I fell in love with Chuck. I feel he's my soul mate.
What's your favorite reading material?
I love to go to the park down the country road from our house and read Harlequin romance books. Sometimes I meet Chuck there and we talk. He kissed me for the first time the other day and it was heaven! We know we’re meant for each other.
Young love, indeed! That sounds very mature in some ways, quite sure and definite a statement, and yet at 14 there's still a lot to learn about relationships with boys. If you had to change things. What would you do first?
Well, I had a rough time when we first moved here and I went to junior high school. I got depressed because the snotty girls who come from rich families ignored me. I convinced mom I was sick a lot and missed school. She'd make me scrambled eggs and we'd hang out together. She had a similar time in high school and gave me good advice. When kids make fun of you, make them laugh with you and not at you. I realized I was a bit of a comic and took her advice. Soon I was accepted and made many good friends. I became a star basketball player and joined the band, which helped. Mom asked me if I knew the song ‘Long Long Ago, Far Far Away.’ We had just learned it and mom said, then go play that trumpet far far away. Guess you know where I get my sense of humor.
Those are very positive approaches to tackling what can be a very nasty problem. If not Chuck, who or what else would be the love of your life?
I love life. I enjoy each moment. Kelly thought I was nuts one day when we bought new school clothes and then decided to go for a bike ride. I couldn't decide what to wear so I put on layers of my entire new clothes at once. Kelly's a little too organized and rigid and said she was saving her clothes for a special occasion. I told her I thought a bike ride was special enough. After all, you only live once. I love my family more than anything, but my love for Chuck is new and different and I’ve never been so happy.
What is your favorite way to travel?
Certainly not traveling in our station wagon, all six of us and our huge St. Bernard, Luna, who upchucks, making everybody else throw up except Dante. Dad gets furious, but mom brings bags for us. Course Luna didn't know how to use them. Mom always looked out the window so dad wouldn't see her grin. But traveling out West in a dilapidated camper built for four was so fun-- at least for me and my brothers. Kelly kept asking if we'd left the country and Nicole cried, wanting to go home. Kim loved it, until we forgot her and left her in the desert at a gas station. Mike laughed but Kim looked shook up even as she claimed she knew we’d come back for her. When I was 12, Grandma took Kelly and me by bus to Canada to visit a Catholic shrine and that was a blast. Lucky for me, Grandma and Kelly had a sense of humor, as well as a lot of shock over my shenanigans.
What is your biggest goal?
My goals were violently taken away from me on August 23, 1981. My friend and I were walking to the park to hear a concert. I begged mom to let me go and paid her a dollar to do the dishes for me. She laughed and finally gave in. The last words I said to her as I ran out the front door, was, ‘Bye Mom.’ I was telling my friend as we walked that I hoped Chuck would be there. That's all I remember. The next 10 days I was between two worlds. I could not move and I heard the doctors say I wouldn’t live. Mom and my family were with me day and night and mom told me I was in an accident but would be all right. I fought to live for my mom and dad and family and began communicating by blinking my eyes for yes and no. I heard the doctors try to convince my parents take me off life support, but they refused. I'd always said if I was paralyzed I would not want to live, but I couldn't let my family down.
On one visit, after seeing tears running down my cheeks, mom whispered in my ear that it was okay if I wanted to go Home and followed the light to Heaven's realm. I felt free at last . . . And soon after I left my body. I know now my goals were met, according to God's will, in my short life. Now my goal is to remain close to my family, appearing to those, especially my 10 nieces and nephews, who can see, hear or sense my presence. I told the little ones who could see and hear me the clearest that mom would survive her heart attacks. And she did. Now my goal is to wait for my loved ones to come home to me. Time doesn't exist here as it does on Earth. Years are but a second and then we’ll all be together again. And so I wait.

Beautiful answers, Noelle, thank you. 
A little fun now for the readers, Noelle. Which do you like best?
Candy or fruit? Candy
City or countryside? Countryside
Reading or walking? Reading
Puccini operas or Rihanna? Neither
Thank you very much indeed, Noelle, for being interviewed today. 

                                               The Cat Who Wanted a Dog

True story of a cat who wants his own little dog but is in for a big surprise Hi boys and girls, I'm Toby, a handsome cat if I say so myself. I do whatever I want but Grandma and Grandpa think they own me! My favorite thing is to take Grandma's shiny jewelry and hide it. Grandpa is still looking for his favorite pen. I have one friend, Casey, a wild cat who lives outside but she tells me through the screen door about the outside world. I was a happy, cool cat until---well, read what I wrote about the day Grandma invited the 'Monster' to visit. Yikes!

And Kids, please try to color in the lines when you color me. I am a bit fussy about my hair. When you read the book you'll find out why!!!

Here's what I look like in real life. I'm also a doctor. Cat's purring causes sound waves that heal us and our human and animal friends. I even make house calls. I can sense when an animal or dog is sick. Grandma things that's pretty cool but Granpa says we are both crazy. 

on January 13, 2017 ebook &: Paperback|Verified Purchase 5 stars

Saturday, April 8, 2017


Hello my friends and newcomers!! Welcome to Rave Review Book Club's BOOK & BLOG PARTY at A Writer's Journey, Staten Island, New York. Enter by leaving a comment to win daily prizes and one Grand prize. Today I am giving away one (1) ebook called: . . . And the Whippoorwill Sang and one (1) ebook of The Cat Who Wanted a Dog. If you already have these books, I will subsititute another ebook that I think you will like.
Happy times, a sunny day, a driving drunk, eight lives forever 

The elusive whippoorwill swoops down the mountains.
Through night into dawn it's song mourns summer's loss--
as I cry mine.   
    AND THE WHIPPOORWILL SANG, a 300 page memoir, opens with eloping teenagers, Micki and Butch, in a bizarre double wedding ceremony with Micki’s mother.  The couple share comical escapades, spanning decades. A terrible accident occurs in a placid valley nestled in the Susquehanna Mountains. Micki narrates happier days while confronting an uncertain future. One of her six children is fighting for life in the hospital. The family embarks upon its unbearable journey to the other side of sorrow . . . 

    And so  in the throes of grief, a writing career was born.
A Whippoorwill looking in the window

                     LEGACY OF LOVE by Micki Peluso

 I stood in the small church, supported by the prayers of loved ones, mantled with the soulful whine of the church organ playing its dirge of death. I felt a separation of mind and body.  Someone was standing here, but it couldn’t be me. The smell of incense permeated my senses, overwhelming with its cloying scent. Next to me, covered with a shroud, stood the casket of my child. I would not look at it, could not.

The words of the priest droned on and on, completing the Mass, and the ceremony finally drew to a close, but I was lost in a sea of unrelated thought. I heard nothing; I felt nothing, except a desire to be done with this, to be free to face my grief alone. We walked, my family and I, down the endless aisle of concerned, tear streaked faces, united in a melange of emotion, following the one who would never again walk among us. Then out into the overcast day, whose sun had the dignity not to shine, we entered the limousines and headed for the cemetery to say our final goodbye. The ride to the cemetery was tortuously slow. We climbed the long winding mountain road to the top, surrounded by grotesquely  beautiful tombstones, the only proof of former lives. 

Surely this was just a dream. I would awaken soon and rebuke the nightmare that enveloped my senses, sighing with relief. Oh God, please let this be a dream. But no, the grass was too lushly green. Tear shaped droplets of rain hung precariously from misted, succulent leaves. The dark gray clouds swirling in anger as the sun tried vainly to push them aside in a futile effort to dominate the day, were too real. Yes, this was actually happening.

There were over a hundred people standing behind me; their silence bearing down upon me like the crush of ocean waves. I fought the compulsion to slide into oblivion and let this travesty proceed without me.

There was a small crucifix on top of the darkly ominous box which was now my daughter’s residence. I tried to focus on that one object in an effort to retain my sanity. The voice of the priest, overflowing with empathy, broke the silence with, I was told later, a moving and beautiful eulogy. His words rained down over me, covering me with compassionate warmth, but I comprehended no meaning. Closing my mind to everything around me, the box and I stood alone together in the macabre stillness of a lonely mountain top, whose residents, except for birds and trees, were all stone cold and unfeeling.

There was no life here, not even serenity, just the vacuous emptiness of space and time, devoid of animation. What a cruel, unlikely place to leave one who was so vivacious, so seething with spirit, so very much alive. I had to leave this place. My daughter was not here.

After the funeral, our family unit was forever altered. Yet life went on and swept us along; children had to be fed and cared for, careers had to be maintained.

The ten-day wait in the Intensive Care Unit was over. Family, neighbors and friends moved on with their own lives and we were forced to continue ours, in spite of the gaping hole left by the absence of Noelle. There would be no more hovering by her bedside, praying for the miracle that would heal her severed spinal cord; broken by the thoughtless drunk driver who struck her down in broad daylight miracle that was not meant to be. Noelle’s fourteen years of life were over and her two brothers, three sisters, her father and I had to somehow face the future without the child who had lit up our lives and had given us constant pleasure.

The other children reacted in different ways. One became bulimic and suicidal, another, anxious and panic stricken. Yet another raced his car at high speeds, defying death to take him too, while his brother became withdrawn, depressed and barely spoke. Our oldest child, at twenty one, left home to deal with her grief away from us; we caused her too much pain.

Two years later, our oldest daughter had married and was bearing her firstborn child. She had a long and life threatening labor and did not, nor did the rest of us, notice that when she finally brought her son into the world–it was on the day that Noelle died. Upon realizing this, she was horrified and sobbed as she lay in recovery. The rest of us were equally appalled and awestruck by what by what we perceived to be one of life’s cruel ironies.

And then the miracle happened. During the next few years the tragic day that claimed the life of Noelle became, instead, the birthday of a beautiful little boy. Noelle had somehow sent us the gift of healing. Today, as we continue to celebrate that day, our grief is temporarily put aside, and the memories of Noelle have become sweet, bittersweet, yet softened by the little boy born on the date she died. Ian was two years old when he told his mother, Kim, that “when I grow up and become Noelle, the truck will miss me.

At 14 years old, Ian traveled with his grandmother to Rome and in a narrow alley, a car whizzed by and the rear-view mirror (like the one that severed Noelle’s spinal cord) missed him by inches. Other grandchildren seemed obsessed with Noelle as well, even though we did not speak of her often. Nicole’s two year old son, Nicholas told his mother that Noelle was in the room with them. His mother thought he meant her picture but he insisted he could see her. It was her birthday. Kelly’s son, Brandon pointed at the ceiling and babbled until he could talk and then reported seeing Noelle everywhere, once in the front seat of the car next to his mother. He claimed that Noelle had told him not to play in the street with the big boys. He also claimed that he could not see Noelle as often around Christmas because the sky was filled with angels. There were many instances like this. As I lay dying from back to back heart attacks, Noelle came to her father, smiled and gave him the thumbs up—I lived. These visits we believe were Noelle’s way of assuring us that her soul was alive and well, her way of easing our grief–her legacy of love.

                                                             The Cat Who Wanted a Dog

Based on a true story, this tale is narrated by Toby, a cat who lives with Grandma and Grampa and has never met a dog. His life changes when  a huge golden retriever, comes to visit. Rocky is a lovable dog and tries to make friends with Toby, who is both afraid of him and disgusted with his doggy drool. They finally become friends and then Rocky's visit is over. Toby is so sad that Grandma and Grampa take him to the doctor who suggests that the poor cat seems lonely. Toby gets an amazing present for Christmas with a big red bow and drooling nose sticking through the wrapped box. His life after that is never the same as his heart swells with happiness. But Toby is in for a big surprise!

Thanks for visiting my blog and remember to leave a comment to be eligible for some great prizes. Good luck!!

Micki Peluso

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Dear Child of Mine
An Heirloom Devotional for the Unborn Child

By Deirdre Tolhurst

“Let this be written for a future generation that a people not yet created may praise the Lord.”
-----Psalm 102.18 NIV

And so begins a most incredible devotional handbook for mothers going through pregnancy; especially for the first time. Fathers, too, will enjoy this journal of a sort as both parents read the daily passages, until their baby, who listens all those months, enters the world, already knowing love of God and parents.

Every woman faces pregnancy with multiple emotions—happiness, love, trepidation and fear of the unknown. Author of children’s books and poems, Deirdre Tolhurst writes ‘a labor of love’, pun intended, and structures it with interactive ‘read aloud’ passages and messages to the child growing in the womb, adding prayers and blank lines for the parents to add their own thoughts. The pregnancy becomes shared by mother, father and child(children), forming a deep lifelong bond.

This talented writer, speaker and devotional blogger has written one of the most beautiful books that I’ve read. Initially written for her own grandchild, the emotions evoked through conversations with the baby and God bring smiles and tears to the reader—often at the same time.

Deidre skillfully adds practical information on exactly what the mother is experiencing throughout the different trimesters of her journey into motherhood. She also includes schedules of the baby’s progress from conception to birth, sometimes things that doctors are often too busy to relate, yet are of so much comfort to the new parents.

There is nothing more beautiful than bringing a new soul into the world. As parents pour out their love aloud each day for both their child and God, who is love, it makes having a baby as much a spiritual occurrence as a physical one. This lovely book is written as a gift for all parents and children, and is a deeply emotional experience; which helps as the family continues to grow with God as their mainstay in life. “Dear Child of Mine,” is truly an heirloom for the unborn child and will be a lifelong treasure to all who undergo the God-given miracle of childbirth.

Micki Peluso, author of . . . And the Whippoorwill Sang