What Song Lines Would You Compose?

When he was alive the great song writer Leonard Cohen treated his audience to a recitation from a piece still in progress; he began:

Listen to the hummingbird
Whose wings you cannot see
Listen to the hummingbird
Don’t listen to me

Now, the completed hummingbird song appears on Cohen’s posthumous new album, ”Thanks for the Dance.”

So, let’s say you haven’t yet heard the new album. As a creative writing exercise, why not write the next four lines you would like to see in the song? Then, at some point, you can compare what Cohen wrote with your own offering.

Please write the song that flows from your heart.

Do You Have A Safe Haven?

Everyone needs a safe place, or safe haven, they can go to when they need to catch their breath and find a few moments refuge from the stresses that come from outside or within. For me, such a place has always been the public library which I would retreat to as a boy to get away from the turmoil of an unhappy home. I was always happiest among the book shelves. Other times my safe haven has been my kitchen table where I write my books or read my beloved books. Sometimes, it is a quiet corner in a museum.
Share with us: Where do you find your safe havens — what places or people do you retreat to in search of peace and safety?

Writing About Hope, Eternal Hope

When I read that the ivory-billed woodpecker, once thought to be extinct, had been seen in Arkansas, I thought of the words in a beautiful poem by American poet Emily Dickinson in which she wrote:”Hope is the thing with feathers. — that perches in the soul…”
Share with us: How does ”hope” look to you? What are the things that give you hope? What are some of your own hopes?
Write about them and remember what you write so you won’t ever forget hope, no matter what life brings to you.

Please Send Us Your Thoughts for A New Book

Dear readers,
I am now working on a book of comfort, to help people as they age, as they deal with different health and life issues, and to encourage them to find as much joy as possible in their precious lives.
If I were to hand you such a book of comfort and hope, what kinds of things would you like to find in it? Good thoughts? Prayers? Nuggets of Hope? Humor? Writing prompts to elicit happy memories? Something more? What do you need? Perhaps you can ask this question, too, of elders in your own life, such as your parents or grandparents — they may have some reach ideas about what they need which you can share with me.
I would welcome your ideas which would be helpful to me as I work on this important project. You can send your ideas to billz@makebeliefscomix.com or to this page.
In the past I have written other books of hope, such as LifeLines: A Book of Hope and MakeBeliefs: A Gift for Your Imagination, both of which can be found at www.billztreasurechest.com.

But I am older now than when I wrote these, and I am seeking to do something richer to go with wise aging. I truly welcome your thoughts. Please write.
Sincerely,
Bill Zimmerman

Create Your Own Secret Library

A group of people in Syria who love books are worried that the war’s bombs and fires will destroy the books in their ruined homes. They wrap them in blankets just as they would victims of the war ranging around them. They bring them into the basement of a building and set up a library. This new underground book collection surrounded by sandbags functions, as one user puts it, as an ”oasis of normality in this sea of destruction.” A 14 year-old boy named Amjad appoints himself as chief librarian and writes down the names of people who borrow books and returns to his seat to continue reading. He tells his friends, ”You don’t have TV now anyway, so why not come here and educate yourself? It’s fun.”

Write about Amjad and the people who come visit the library. Write about how they overcome their fears, the books they read, what they learn, what their lives are all about. Write about their courage and their hunger to learn from books. Imagine yourself being a member of this wonderful community.

This is a true story: You can read more about Amjad and his community in a new book, ”Syria’s Secret Library: Reading and Redemption in a Town Under Siege,” by Mike Thomson at: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=syria%27s+secret+library+reading+and+redemption+in+a+town+under+siege&i=stripbooks&crid=QNXP36K6VG3N&sprefix=syria%27s+sec%2Caps%2C130&ref=nb_sb_ss_i_2_11

Write your own inspiring story about what this community did to save their books.