Category Archives: life & love

Star-Fallen: On Love

romance couple

Star by Roman Kargapalov

“We have a natural tendency to assume that a remarkable chemistry between two souls is confirmation that they are meant to be together. In the heat of profound feelings, it seems counter-intuitive to imagine ourselves separate from our beloved. But chemistry and longevity are not natural bedfellows. Just because we feel earth-shatteringly alive with someone doesn’t mean they are supposed to be our …life partner. They may have come for a very different reason – to awaken us, to expand us, to shatter us so wide open that we can never close again. Perhaps they were sent from afar to polish the rough diamond of your soul before vanishing into eternity. Perhaps they just came to give you new eyes. Better we surrender our expectations when the beloved comes. (S)he may just be dropping in for a visit.”

—         Jeff Brown

Love Now

ghosts of old selves

by Oleg Oprisco

I leave behind the ghosts of our old selves to fall in love with you

now, immediately, 

all over

Poetry: Ghazal for My Sisters

Be the woman you’re destined to be in this life;
graceful in motion, dance free in this life.

Buy tickets for any train, bus, plane or cab.
So much to hear, do, think and see in this life.

Speak up with body and voice, flowing hands—
you don’t always have to agree in this life.

Lay burdens down on altars, by lakes,
places to which you can flee in this life.

Eyes to the heavens, fingers to the sky,
hands up to feel the glee in this life.

All numbers on the scale act shady—
not everyone’s size three in this life.

Beads and bracelets, bridges and bayous.
Don’t have to be one she in this life.

A book, a pen, a solemn afternoon.
Savor your cups of green tea in this life.

Poems should be courted like a bride.
Get down on one knee in this life.

Come up for air beneath the glamour;
listen for your own plea in this life.

Every taste and flavor, every grain—
so glad you’ve come to me in this life.

-Allison Joseph, Valparaiso Poetry Review

And the sea will grant each man new hope, as sleep brings dreams of home

peacesA good day. I am thankful.

Volunteered at a shelter, then a long, good workout, now home, eating peaches, contemplating making some almond milk hot chocolate, and beginning a Ngaio Marsh mystery book, while the fan whirs in the background with the last promise of summer.

Life is heavy, sometimes, in its wholistic measure, so let it be light in the small things.

Saudade in Summer Heat


(Madang, Morobe Province)

Every year from May to July I get a humming in my bones. Somewhere between an ache and a pull, a sensation that I can’t quite feel but is always there, like a sound just above the human ability to register. It’s a longing to go home. Or perhaps more specifically and also more generally, a longing for the tropics.

The seasons change between May and July – everything turns slowly to summer. And in that in-between place, as the temperature shifts to a bold blaze of heat but the moisture from spring is still in the air and everything seems to be vibrating yet holding still in place, not quite ready to be in the midst of steady summer heat – it’s than that it feels like New Guinea. And Honolulu. Every place I’ve been in the tropics, for eight weeks or so in the United States as the temperature turns it feels like that.

I’d always get restless, in college and later, at a certain point in the year. It took me a long time to realize when, and why. But it seems to intensify and get worse with every year since I left New Guinea – a pull that creeps up slowly and stays as spring shifts to summer.

And I get this insane urge to make my way somewhere tropical, preferably home, but anywhere really that resembles it, that can promise it, this heavy air, this tease of tropical heat, the warm ocean and the humming of cicadas and or other insects, slow winds in palm trees, the smell of hibiscus and a faint scent of saltwater…anywhere with these conditions. I’ve been dreaming of Hawaii, lately – because home is so inaccessible. Can almost feel it sometimes around the corner, hitting me on a warm afternoon here in the Northwest as I leave an air-conditioned office and the weather can be felt, alive like a slowly shifting beast.

When you leave home, they never tell you that it will be the weather that will make you the most homesick.

I miss sea and saltwater and and especially humidity and a wild green manifesting itself firmly everywhere. Saudade, is what they call it.

TED-Ed: The Science of Attraction

I Had a Funny Dream that You Were Wearing Funny Shoes

Dear Reader,

The world filled with magic again watching this video of a little girl discovering rain.

Kayden + Rain from Nicole Byon on Vimeo.



10 Dating Guidelines for Women


1. Be kind, gracious, loving, and forgiving. Give him more grace than you ever thought would be required, and give it over and over. But be kind to yourself also, and if you find yourself exhausted, discouraged, demoralized, or just simply being treated badly – leave. God made you to be respected and treasured and if as a pattern you are not receiving that, leave.

2. Forgive.

3. Don’t date douchebags.

4. Don’t date douchebags who say they’ve reformed until you’ve seen their behavior change for the good over the course of a long time like a year.

5. Listen to your friends and family. They are not always right, but often are.

6. Don’t break up with someone just because your parents don’t like him. Your spouse will be 200% more present and impactful in your life than your parents will ever be. The ball’s in your court to choose.

7. Men don’t know what they’re doing any more than women do. If they get one out of three things right, that’s good. On the other hand, there’s a difference between a guy with good intentions and character making silly mistakes, and a guy who shows patterns of behavior that speak negatively about his character. In the latter camp is verbal (or physical) abuse, constant selfishness, and any kind of unfaithfulness or cheating.

8. Don’t marry someone you’ve only dated for three months. Even if it works out – and sometimes it does – it makes the first few months of the marriage infinitely harder. You have nothing to lose by waiting. Nothing. As John Steinbeck wrote in a letter on love to his son, If it is right, it happens — The main thing is not to hurry. Nothing good gets away.

9. Love isn’t enough. You may feel the deepest, most sincere passion and affection for him – and he may feel it for you in return – and the relationship still doesn’t work out. That is one of the great mysteries of love and life.  And every romantic comedy, Disney movie, and chic lit book you have ever read lied to you: romantic love doesn’t conquer all. Sometimes there are things that just don’t work and never will. Sometimes there are obstacles you can’t surmount. And that’s okay.

10. The X factor. Sometimes in relationships it happens that you are dating a great guy. Everything falls into place, you are a great fit for each other, you like him and maybe even have affection for him as a person, you want to fall in love with him – but you just don’t quite feel it. That necessary attraction and ultimately deeper passion. And after dating him for a little while you still don’t. It’s the x factor. Baffling men and women since the beginning of time. There’s nothing to be done but end the relationship because dragging it out for 6 months or a year will only hurt both of you. Life is long, and you have agency. Don’t stay in something that your gut tells you isn’t working, even if you can’t quite rationally pin down why it’s not working.

“Just a lovely, average girl – that’s what I want”The Shop Around the Corner 

Caffeinated Links: Books and You, Everything You Need to Know about Guardians of the Galaxy


Gorgeous, gorgeous piece from ThoughtCatalog on the love of reading. “When others are drawn to selfishness and cruelty, and everything seems bathed in shades of vapid grays, I hope you grab for a book. Find the color, find the light, and remember what it means to be right, what it means to be real, what it means to be you.” RT

io9 has absolutely everything you need to know about the Guardians of the Galaxy trailer (and by extension, film). RT

Hitfix’s Alan Sepinwall reviews NBC’s ‘About A Boy’ and calls it a watered-down take on on the Hornby book and film RT

And NPR’s Linda Holmes turns in her usual nuanced, thoughtful review and comes to the same conclusion as Sepinwall. “The least helpful thing you can do with an adaptation of a book (or film) made by intelligent, capable people is to sniff, “Not as good as the original.” After all, when a property is as adored as About A Boy, it can take a while for anything else to feel quite as good, and presumptive skepticism is a regrettably simple opening gambit. But what’s problematic in this adaptation is not that the TV show has not brought along the quality of the book and film, but that it has not brought along the qualities of the book and film.” RT

%d bloggers like this: