poetry, thoughts, music, faith, life and other things not found in the other corners of the internet that I have occupied.

30th August 2012

Quote reblogged from with 95 notes

If a person is a writer, it doesn’t matter what you tell them about graduate school or the market for fiction or what their life might look like at forty if the breaks don’t go their way. They’re going to do it regardless, come hell or high water.
— Inman Majors, creative writing teacher at James Madison University and author of Love’s Winning Playsa comedy about college football. (via wwnorton)

28th August 2012

Post with 1 note

Nicaragua: Day One

It’s been more than a month since I got back from Managua, Nicaragua. After spending 3 days at House of Hope, a prostitute rescue home for women and young girls abused and sold into sexual slavery, I was left with far too much mental instability to properly process through it all.

Well, the processing has got about as sorted out as it’s going to get.

I’ll skip the travels down there for the sake of interest. We left on a Sunday morning, from our church and arrived in Managua right around 8:00 p.m. Managua time.  The plan was to meet a man named Oscar and his family. They would take us from the airport to our guest house in downtown Managua.

Oscar is roughly the size of a mountain and serves as basically the strong arm of House of Hope. He has three children, one of whom is an older son that lives in America. He, his wife, and his other son have not seen his American-moved son in nearly two years.

So it was a great privilege to be part of the group that actually surprised Oscar and his family by bringing his son with us. They had not been expecting it at all and there were many gasps and tears and hugs.

Five minutes in Nicaragua and I was already getting misty eyed.  This was not good…

The truck Oscar picked us up in was an old work truck with an open back cab. A few support bars ran along the top of it. The thirteen members of our group crammed into the back of the truck, some sitting, some standing, some holding on for dear life, and drove through downtown Managua at about 9:00 at night. It was actually a lot of fun and also a unique way to see the lay of the land.  It was also an eye-opening way to see how extreme the poverty is in certain areas of Nicaragua. One block would boast old houses and deteriorating yet habitable apartments while the next block featured shacks of wood, tin and anything that might hold them together, all tucked away behind concrete walls and trees.

So of course, I instantly felt guilty when we arrived at our guest house. The construction was new and we had a lot of conveniences that the majority of areas we had passed often go without: air conditioning, a fridge, hot water, clean sheets.  Karma did pay a visit on a few occasions though; the water heater burst and partially flooded the den area, there was no water pressure for about a day or so, and the entire men’s floor was flooded with about an inch of standing water when the shower in the adjoining bathroom began to leak.

But enough with the woes of the spoiled Americans…

DAY ONE

Day One had us traveling in a cramped van to the Managua Zoo. There, we were to meet the women and children of House of Hope and take them to the Zoo. When we got there, we discovered that the zoo is closed on Mondays. So after hanging out in what I assume was the zoo parking lot for about an hour, we decided to take the kids and women (an entire busload of about sixty or so) to Lake Managua. There, we accompanied the women and children on guided boat rides of the lake. This was a little bit of overload for me. It was quite difficult to split my attention between the kids and the sights. Lake Managua is enormous and most rich people from Managua and Granada have extremely nice houses along the lake. That, plus the beautiful sights of the lake’s wilderness and Mombacho (a huge volcano just south of Managua) setting in the background.

It was also a wake-up call to realize that the vast majority of these kids had never touched a boat, much less ever ridden on one. I was glad to be a part of it, even when I was asked to sit at the front of the boat and catch most of the waves that splashed up over the sides when the driver hit rough wakes.

This was followed by about two straight hours of playing with roughly thirty-five children on a playground just off the shore of the lake. Now look…I have 2 children, one of which is a 3 year old boy who has reserves of energy that baffle me at times. But within this 2 hours, I got more exercise than I had in the past 6 months. I got dirty and dusty. I got cuts and scrapes and bruises. I had bug bites (I guess that’s what they were anyway) and sore spots on places I didn’t know could get sore.

But it was fun. I had an absolute blast. It was also here when I was forced to get over myself. Knowing what the majority of these girls have gone through before the age of ten, it’s difficult, as a man, to know how to interact with them. Apparently, the girls are used to this and they take initiative. If they want to be hugged, your discomfort is a non-issue. They will hug you. And if you resist at all, you will be attacked with a bear hug. If they want you to put your arm around them as you walk from the swing set to the slides, they will take your arm and put it around their shoulders themselves. The first time this happened to me, the nine year-old girl in question actually looked at me and sort of rolled her eyes …a get over yourself expression if I’ve ever seen one…

We then had a late lunch of fried chicken with the group from House of Hope. The chicken lunches were from a fast food place called Tip Top. As a rule, I’m not the biggest fan of fried chicken but Tip Top was amazing (a good thing since I’d encounter it a few more times during my stay).

After this, we traveled to House of Hope. Stepping onto the grounds for the first time was sort of dizzying. It’s a place I’d heard about, a place I knew was helping so many women and young girls escape abuse.  But now it was real. It was like reading about a place for years and then being able to physically manifest it and touch it. We got a quick tour where we learned more about Casa Esperanza (House of Hope). Our guide went over some of the basics, some of which I already knew: most of the girls in the home have no actual families. Some were even sold into prostitution by their families for meager sums of money.  At House of Hope, the girls live in a dorm-like environment that barely holds the 27 girls that are currently living there.

It was odd to hear the guide explain the abuse and torment these girls have gone through, some from as early as six years of age, and then to see those same girls running around with smiles on their faces, playing and trying to grab our attention. It was my first confirmation that House of Hope was more than just a nice pleasant story of girls finding healing. Contrasting those stories with the joy I saw in some of them was polarizing in a way, but I left there that day with a better understanding of how God and faith truly can help to heal and redirect pain towards something better.

(Days 2 and 3 coming in the next couple of days)

Tagged: House of HopeNicaraguaGodsexual slaveryprostitutionhuman trafficking

28th August 2012

Photo reblogged from The Tangential with 1,951 notes

Source: ccal

28th August 2012

Photo reblogged from Cozy Dark with 119 notes

cozydark:

Curiosity’s first telephoto images from Mars. See the layers of Mount Sharp, as imaged by MSL’s 100mm MastCam. Truly amazing depth of field.

cozydark:

Curiosity’s first telephoto images from Mars. See the layers of Mount Sharp, as imaged by MSL’s 100mm MastCam. Truly amazing depth of field.

23rd August 2012

Video

Live Shot of Curiosity Landing on Mars (in HD)

Tagged: marsladningcuriosityvideo

23rd August 2012

Photo reblogged from Nonsensical Stuffs with 738 notes

Source: no-ducks-allowed

22nd August 2012

Quote with 1 note

since feeling is first
who pays any attention
to the syntax of things
will never wholly kiss you;

wholly to be a fool
while Spring is in the world

my blood approves,
and kisses are a far better fate
than wisdom
lady i swear by all flowers. Don’t cry
—the best gesture of my brain is less than
your eyelids’ flutter which says

we are for eachother: then
laugh, leaning back in my arms
for life’s not a paragraph

And death i think is no parenthesis

— e.e. cummings

22nd August 2012

Photo reblogged from With God, all things are possible. with 144 notes

ronnie-outlovesjesus:

ronnie-outlovesjesus:

Source: spiritualwarrior612

22nd August 2012

Photo reblogged from Strange and Unprepared with 759 notes

naioa:

Christophe Hohler

naioa:

Christophe Hohler

21st August 2012

Photo reblogged from with 1,101 notes

Source: spiritualinspiration

21st August 2012

Photo reblogged from with 3,198 notes

Source: Flickr / theconstantemptying

21st August 2012

Video

Wow….Billy still has it. Nice twist on a classic. Smashing Pumpkins cover Bowie’s “Space Oddity”

17th August 2012

Post

scorched earth policy

It’s sometimes a bit of an issue to be a Christian and not a fan of 90% of Christian music. While I understand the purpose behind Praise and Worship music, it takes a lot for me to get into it. Similarly, I can’t get into Christian “hardcore” or metal. I can’t stand Switchfoot. Not a big fan of Skillet, either.

One Christian group I do like are Hammock but a lot of that is atmospheric music, so that doesn’t really qualify

So a lot of times, I get pretty stoked to find “secular” (ugh I hate that word) artists that weave Christian themes into their music. Being a Deftones fan, you can imagine how delighted I was to discover Far Less.

I could see the sky from afar was sitting blue and so still,
and i could see the clouds rolling in were forcing us to the hills,

I witnessed you’ve got the Judas sickness, you should fall to your knees,
feeling the absence of a holy presence, pray for love pray fro mercy,

I’m realizing that we aren’t strong enough, raise your palms to the sky,
show us that you are alive, be prepared cause here comes your life.

I’ve witnessed the trend is losing innocence you should fall to your knees,
I feel the absence of a holy presence, pray for love pray for mercy,

I’m realizing that we aren’t strong enough, raise your palms to the sky,
show us that you are alive, be prepared cause here comes your…

“i’m burning everything down…making sure that nothing comes from this ground…”

I’m realizing that we aren’t strong enough, raise your palms to the sky,
show us that you are alive, be prepared cause here comes your life.

your life…here comes your life…now run…

I’m burning everything down…making sure that nothing comes from this

I could see the sky from afar was sitting blue and so still,
and i could see the clouds rolling in were forcing us to the hills

Tagged: far lessmusicdeftoneschristian

17th August 2012

Quote reblogged from Nonsensical Stuffs with 520 notes

In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and been widely regarded as a bad move.
— Douglas Adams (via mimikova)

16th August 2012

Post reblogged from Books Matter with 29 notes

ADVICE WHISPERED TO EDGAR ALLAN POE AS HE SITS DOWN TO GAMBLE

booksmatter:

These men are already dead.
Don’t you see how their hands
are trees incapable of leafing out?

Leave. You’ll lose. These men
are ghosts: they can see
what cards you’re holding. See

how their money is yellow,
curled and brittle like pictures
of naked girls in a smoker’s house?

You can’t win, I tell you.
Drop the leaves of your cards.
You must be the autumn.


—Austin Smith