Exciting Times!

Check it out!


I realize it has been quite a while since my last blog and I am so sorry for that. It’s just that, well, I have been preparing my book, “The Conservative Congregant” for publishing. It goes on sale tomorrow, August 30. I’ve been so excited about this book because it is about the things dear to my heart, namely homeless people and God and blessings and ministry and I could go on and on.

The thing about “The Conservative Congregant” is that it is not just one book. No, siree. It is to be a series. I’m already at work on Book 2- The Dowagers. I want to say that this is not about religion, but about doing the right thing, stepping out of one’s comfort zone to help others and the unexpected blessings that comes from that one selfless act.

“The Conservative Congregant” can be found and bought here

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Mild Nature

in this age of
pictures taken
and erased

the gentle are
reduced to scars.

© Ben Ditmars 2015


Photograph Courtesy of Jacqueline Smith.

Read her blog here.

For Independent Authors

Amen. Tell ’em, Jackie!

A Platform of Sorts

As a human being, I have several shortcomings.  I’m not a very good listener.  I hate taking other people’s advice.  I’m stubborn.  I hold grudges.  I have a hard time taking anything seriously.  And that’s just to name a few.  If there’s one character trait I take pride in, however, it’s that I am very protective of the people that I love.

I’m not going to name names, but yesterday, one of my indie writer friends experienced cruelty concerning her books for the first time.  Now, we’ve all had naysayers and bad reviews and the snobbish “Oh… You didn’t want a REAL publisher?” comments.  But when it’s directed at me, I can handle it.  Yeah, it hurts.  Yes, I’ve cried.  But whatever.  It’s no big deal.

When it’s one of my friends, however, I get angry.  Not so much with bad reviews, because honestly, we all get them.  It’s part of…

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And Now A Poetic Interview with Terri Malek!

Terri Malek is a great friend and talented poet. I had the privilege of interviewing her for my blog recently. Please read her incredible words for yourself.

Living a healthy lifestyle balancing mind, body, and spirit, and helping others do the same is my life’s purpose. The body and spirit can heal itself with the proper treatments, awareness, and creative expression. Living a holistic lifestyle and birthing your true self can create balance in every area of your life and teach you techniques to remain in balance.

1. Can you tell us a little about yourself?
All things mystical and metaphysical create movement in my soul. I will be married 19 years this fall to my best friend and soul mate. I currently have four pets. My lifestyle and passions marry with my line of work, which is extremely fulfilling and freeing. I am in Holistic Healing for the mind, body, and the spirit. My primary passions within this field are teaching and writing. I am a Reiki Master and Practitioner, a teacher of other forms of Energy Healing and Holistic Healing modalities, and Founder and Executive Director of a Holistic Healing and Educational Center. I use creative expression of many forms to include writing, which brings about much healing for self and others.

2. When did you start writing poetry?
I began writing poetry as a young teenager.

3. Do you have a favorite poet/poem?
My favorite poet is Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Rumi, known more commonly as “Rumi”.

4. Does music inspire you? What kind?
Music highly moves and inspires me if it is music that brings out my true self and makes my soul dance. Some of my favorites are Indie, Classical, Kirtan, and music used in sound therapy that mimic sounds in nature and the cosmos.

5. Do you write on the computer or in a notebook?
I prefer to write on a computer when writing books and blog articles, but I still find myself often pulling out pencil and paper to write poetry.

6. If you could write a poem anywhere, where would it be?
I write poetry, or other forms of writing, anywhere and anytime that spirit moves me.

7. What do you enjoy most about writing poetry?
I enjoy writing poetry because it affords an opportunity to express what is often difficult to articulate verbally, or is not received well audibly by others.

8. If you could hang out with any poet, who would it be?
I would love to spend more time in the presence of Snatum Kaur, musician and poet.

9. If you could physically fight a fellow poet, from any point in time, who would they be?
All you need is LOVE.

10. Have you read or performed poetry live at slams or open mic?
No, I have never performed poetry live.

11. Why does nothing rhyme with orange?
I just recently learned that this is the only word in the English language that does not have a single word that rhymes with it. Since I am not one for conformity, and am a proponent of uniqueness, I say hooray for orange!

12. Do you post your poetry online?
I just started posting minimal poetry online earlier this year.

13. Do you put your writing into pictures to share on Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram or Facebook?
I have never put my writing to pictures, but am drawn to this form of poetic expression.

14. What is the most difficult poetry to write? Are there any forms you dislike?
The most difficult poem to write is the one that is not ready to be birthed. I do not follow or prescribe any defined styles necessarily, but let the message tell me what it is to be.

15. Do you believe anyone can learn to write poetry? Do you think anyone can enjoy reading it?
Anyone who is willing to freely express themselves can do whatever they put their mind to, whether that be writing poetry, or reading it from a perspective that truly resonates with them.

16. Where do vanishing objects go? Remember to phrase your answer in the form of a riddle.

Objects vanishing
Is only an illusion.
One’s frequency of vibration
Delineates conclusion.

Objects re-emerge
When frequency shifts.
Universal alignment
Brings magical gifts.

17. What project(s) are you currently working on, poetry or otherwise?
I am currently in the later stages of writing my own book of memoirs and recording of my physical, emotional, karmic, and spiritual growth and healing process. It includes stories, lessons, poetry, blog articles, and journal entries.

18. Would you like to share a poem with us today?
Yes, I absolutely would love to share a poem with you today. Thank you for the opportunity.


To feel your own heartache
With each painful pulse
Is to feel like you are dying,
But to truly be alive.
So alive that each heartbeat
Resounds like the beat of a drum
In your chest, your ears.

As the rhythm rises and falls,
The wrenching grip of pain
Clutches at each breath.
As the pain climaxes
Death feels so near,
As despair overcomes all else
Thoughts twist and turn.

Surrender sounds promising
Yet so far away,
Like a fairy tale
Floating on a cloud
Millions and millions
Of miles into another galaxy
In an altered universe.

Yet you are here
In this place, at this time, in this pain.
In between the moments
Before the incident,
And this instance in time
Where future does not exist
And the past cannot return.
To feel the heartache of a
Soul sister is to know
Complete helplessness.
Experiencing one’s heart
Contort in unfathomable ways,
As if your heart was a piece of theirs
Strengthens the bond of sisterhood.

To know their pain physically
In every cell of your body
As if you opted
To take just a piece of that burden
That they carry every second,
Every minute, every hour,
Every day, and into eternity

Hoping somewhere
Deep within you
That you can ease even a moment
Of suffering
That you can replace even a small
Piece of the broken vessel
That is their heart.


Find more about Terri Malek:

On her blog: healingtouchreiki7.com

Owl and Porcupine

“But the hawk and the porcupine shall possess it, the owl and the raven shall dwell in it.”
Isaiah 34:11

Image Source: Flickr

“Tell me a story,” said the Owl to the Porcupine.

“Tell me what is left of this when I am nothing more than feathers and old bones inside a tree.”

“I imagine,” paused the Porcupine, “you will see a light as all things must, but yours will be the moon.”

“And after that?”

“And after what?”

“The moon of course! The moon!”

“I can only guess, but maybe squirrels and raccoons will fall like rain.”

“And what of those I love?”

“I don’t suppose that they will fall, unless you eat them too.”

“I could never eat my mother,” said the owl.

“And I would not want you to,” replied the Porcupine.

“But will she find me?”

“She will join you on the endless hunt, I’m sure.”

“I’m scared for all of us,” confessed the Owl. “Will we suffer for our sins?”

“It sounds like you already have,” replied the Porcupine.

“But we are hunters who have killed the squirrels and raccoons!”

“And squirrels killed the acorn as it consumed the sun. So long as you take no more than you need the world survives.”

“Porcupine,” said owl still contemplating. “I’m dying. Soon all my memories will rest beneath your quills.”

The Porcupine stared blankly.

“I’m dying,” repeated Owl, “and whether fate exists or not the line of emptiness will stretch until I’m crushed beneath it.”

Porcupine took a long time to consider this. He chewed his tree bark while they waited.

“You are on another journey where you spread your wings,” he said. “But I will join you.”

“Please do,” said the Owl. “Will it take long?”

“For you, it will be a short night sleeping.”

“And for you?” He said with tears.

“Many more, perhaps a hundred years? Who can really say with certainty? But we will meet again, one way or another.”

And Owl knew that it would be a splendid sleep.

© Ben Ditmars 2015

Author Interview: Paula Walker Baker

Check out this great interview with Paula Walker Baker!

A Platform of Sorts

Happy Monday, friends!  It’s the beginning of a new week and I have a special guest on my blog with me this morning!  My dear friend and fellow author, Paula Walker Baker, has a new book coming out next week so I invited her here to talk about it this afternoon!

Paula and I met last year at Camp All Saints, the same camp where I worked for three years and met several of my closest and dearest friends.  It’s a place that has changed my life over and over again and brought the most amazing, wonderful people into my life.  I will forever be grateful for all of my experiences there.  I’m sure there will be many more to come.  Paula is a dear, sweet, wonderful lady and I am so honored to call her my friend.  Please give her a warm welcome!


Tell me a little bit about…

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Neon Jungle with Natasha Head

I had the pleasure of writing a poem recently with one of my all-time favorite poets, Natasha Head. Please check out her work if you have not.

Image Source: Flickr

Filtered, on the fringe existence
We were just a phase, diluted
By the highway air

A glimpse of triumph
Before backing down

A random song delivered on the fm waves of a dying signal
The final breaths of its melody
Now imprinted on our story
As we chase pavement
Through neon jungles where we were never welcome
Beyond the fences
That failed to keep us tame

And what is tame,
But darkness,
My old friend?
Lay the exits down,
Before our pain subsides
To agony and grief

In shadows thick as syrup
Stories stretch like Christmas ribbon
Escape routes reveal themselves
Freedom beyond what hurts
We risk so much to raise our voice
Should we not risk the same to listen?

© 2015 Ben Ditmars and Natasha Head

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