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Review: BUTTERFLY VOYAGE by Bianca Bowers

Review of Butterfly Voyage by Bianca Bowers

Open the pages of Butterfly Voyage. Walk your fingers and eyes right into its middle and let your mind get lost in delight in any direction.

This is a book of poetry carved out of malleable ingredients that are an imaginative wheelhouse for readers to take shelter in as he or she moves along inside the oceanic currents of the author’s journey to self.

In Butterfly Voyage, published in November 2018 by https://paperfieldspress.com, Australian based author/poet Bianca Bowers shares an odyssey where life feels like a continual process of transformation.

At almost every turn there is opportunity to follow the author into the natural world that drifts along with fluid narrative. It’s not a mistake I have reggae music playing in my headphones as I write this. That comforting skip and bounce beat with a voice floating along with it is what reading this book is like.

There’s a wide, deep well of flowing creativity inside the pages. A mix of natural and supernatural. Identification and deliverance from pain and self-loathing, crossings through misunderstandings, bridges to memories, islands of visions, illusions of time bent and then bent again, perceptions of what is and is not, places that amaze with described details, the seen and unseen of who a person thinks they are versus what they’ve been hiding themselves from.

In the end all the layers listed above lift the top off of the narrator’s carefully constructed canopy of safety. They fall and float to the forest floor, letting light in which follows behind and promotes growth. Each verse from beginning to end is rich, ambient, soulful, and textured.

At its centre the book is a conversation between the narrator, her mother’s voice, Leda, who seems to be her guardian dragon spirit, and Mother Nature, all seeking a newly open heart for her, and for balance between the author’s recognition and description of the features of dragon and butterfly. One goes with the other and is healthy and empowering.

I found my own self reflected back out to me as I followed along. That is the power of story and those parallel lines sank in deep as I, too, feel at home within the realms this book explores.

Read this book. If you do, you’ll read it again, as I did, and enjoy its fluid magnificence.

Well done, Ms. Bowers. Your drawing is on its way.

In Australia buy Butterfly Voyage at https://www.amazon.com.au/Butterfly-Voyage-Bianca-Bowers-ebook/dp/B07JXYMS5N/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1542409013&sr=8-1&keywords=butterfly+voyage%2C+bianca+bowers

In the U.S. purchase Butterfly Voyage at https://www.amazon.com/s?k=Bianca+Bowers+Butterfly+Voyage&ref=nb_sb_noss

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I’m taking ~The Greenprint~ challenge.

I happened to watch Marco Borges talk about The Greenprint, a plant based diet, on the Today Show one morning while on an off day from work. https://youtu.be/X-ImJiohQs8

I was fascinated by how simple a plan it seemed to become healthier than I am already am. (Watch the video linked above and hear what I heard)

I’m buying into this to see how it goes. I am very much concerned about the world I live in and trying to do my part to leave it in the best possible shape for my own kids and young people throughout the world.

I feel I can do many small things to help and if not eating meat makes a difference then it’s one more small effort I’ve made.

I’ve got the book and will be sharing my experiences and maybe you, too, might feel like this is something you’d like to try.

I’ll make the recipes and read about the concepts as I go along and describe for you what I’ve experienced.

Until the next time, happy plant based diet eating! : )

Wishes for my last days

     I no longer have a fear of death. I welcome it. Death will happen to each person and I see no reason to worry over it.

     I’ve experienced the death of many people close to me and the idea I will likely be the last living member of my family is a constant, friendly companion.

     I realize the process of mourning is difficult but necessary for those left behind to be able to move ahead. I’ve made a few heavy mistakes in life but I think my reaction to those mistakes have been excellent and heartfelt. I’m currently in a good place with prospects for incredible decades ahead.

     My own view of death is that when a human’s body stops functioning, their consciousness disappears with it. This differs from how I was raised to view the end of physical life. I was taught heaven and hell are real places and that when a person dies, dependent upon their faith and actions, his or her soul will reside in an afterlife of paradise, or separation from paradise, for time eternal.

     I believe in heaven and hell. But I believe we experience heaven or hell as a human being on this earth and that we create like conditions of those mythical places for others and ourselves while alive.

     I will face the end of my life waging war. I will battle against the idea my death is a reason for sadness for anyone who is part of my circle of friends and family. My hope and wish is to enable those people to celebrate the intersections of my life and death with their own life. If reconciliation still needs started and completed with anyone I care for, then I will seek to get to that and do so because what will I have to fear about that act then? 

   Jim Valvano, a person I never met but have always admired once said while in the midst of dying from cancer,

    “If you laugh, you think, and you cry, that’s a full day. That’s a heck of a day. You do that seven days a week, you’re going to have something special.” 

    Whether alive without knowledge death is at my doorstep, or after having received a doctor’s prognosis I shall soon die, I think Mr. Valvano’s words are powerful and a goal for me to shoot for no matter what the circumstances are.

    I am not married anymore but I have two children who mean the entire world to me. I have two sisters and a brother living still. I know they would be at my side as often as possible if I were to receive such news my death is near, as I would be in their case.

     Having made arrangements already for what I would like to have happen to my body once I die, I would then attempt, in a continual loop of glass half full moments, to pour out my heart to my family, and laugh, think and cry with them. 

     I have a particular alternative wish for my burial to be enacted. I want to be cremated and my ashes placed in a Bios Urn. In that Urn, specifically designed to grow a tree from, I want a Beech tree seed placed within. I want the Urn to be taken to an already approved forest and buried there so that my ashes will foster the growth of a Beech tree, reportedly the type of trees books were first made from. Beech trees are said to represent creativity, and as I live my life as a creative person, I will dream of my physical essence nourishing new, filled with hope, life, growing, reaching towards the sun and sky.

     The bark of Beech trees is also where people easily carve their initials and words. Please do so upon the tree my elements become part of.

     Trees have been the best of my friends since I was very young and practically spending entire days in and around the two apple trees in the back yard of my family’s home. Wherever I’ve gone trees, voicing no complaints, allow me to linger nearby, or climb them to rest in their arms. If I feel the need to sing, dream, cry, or laugh, however it is I do those human things have always been completely accepted.

     While it’s still possible, as my body dies, I want to be outside under the sky with roof over my head, with my family nearby. I can even accept those conditions if I have no one along to provide company.

     I will want many, many hugs and kisses from my two children as the materials I am made of move on to become part of another form. Tears fall down my face as I write these words. I will ask them to come visit my Beech tree whenever they can to tell me how their own lives are progressing.  I will ask them to carve a new word of their own choosing upon my bark each time before they leave so that if I am wrong and there is an afterlife where consciousness exists, I can happily ponder its meaning.

     I’ve lived a very, very good life. I will die a happy person with no remorse.

     Arvo Part: Spiegel im Spiegel

(music to contemplate death by)

A horse named Horse

I grew up in a house full of love and as the youngest child I was a bratty, snotty nosed, ball of energy and a challenge to my family. Sweet memories of my childhood are plentiful.

My Dad and Mother both passed away many years ago.

One of the artifacts I still have from those days is Horse. Horse was purchased for me by my parents when I was possibly three or four years old. The sensation of riding Horse hard and long are alive in my nervous system. I can feel my body moving and hear the springs squeak and creak in rhythm as Horse and I galloped.

I have many saved items from that segment of my life but none resonate with the power of Horse. He’s a connection to all the wonder I experienced back then. All the care I received.

Horse is a powerful reminder of how blessed I was then. I thought we were rich. I was incorrect about that because we weren’t. But I had clean clothes, food, a warm bed, toys, hugs, books, direction and love.

I’ve decided to bring Horse back to life. He hung in the air in the garage where I used to live for 10 years and was never touched or moved. My own kids didn’t ride Horse. They don’t really understand how special their Father’s family was.

I’ve decided to make art out of Horse’s presence in my life by taking him out and taking photographs in places and situations where an old time rocking horse normally wouldn’t be found. In doing so I hope to remind myself to be grateful for the life I was born into as well as be thankful for my Mother and Father who gave me everything I needed.

I hope you enjoy all the crazy and interesting places I find appropriate somehow to photograph Horse in.

Thanks for viewing.