Saturday, December 29, 2012

Happy New Year!

     Well, the Mayans screwed up and we're still here. For those who took the movie 2012 literally (I know one or two who qualify), that was either a massive disappointment or cause for celebration. Haven't checked with them yet.

     We are left contemplating fiscal cliffs, a possible talk show for Snooki, Ryan Seacrest's New Year's Eve gala and other assorted gloom and doom scenarios.

     I had a discussion with a close friend over the holidays about doomsday preppers. She maintains she has no desire to prepare for a post-apocalyptic world and would be happy to be gone. I wholeheartedly agree. Y'all stock up on pallets of toilet paper, pork and beans and munitions. I'm not planning to stick around for helping to catch and train pet cockroaches.

     Amid the endless blather about The End Of The World As We Know It, one can find cool stuff to be excited about. Here is one:

     Wired called this "the best gesture-control system we've ever tested." The Verge called it "the next big thing in computing."

     Leap Motion has already received preorders worth tens of millions of dollars, says Andy Miller, the company’s president and COO. He is a former top executive at Apple, and his team is packed with Apple vets. Leap Motion was founded in 2010 by Michael Buckwald, a serial entrepreneur who serves as CEO, and David Holz, a former NASA engineer who previously was working at NASA. Holz’s official title is CTO but he lists himself on LinkedIn as a “mad scientist.” One of their first investors was Marc Andreessen, the founder of Netscape.

     Amazing technology, and it's going to sell for—gasp—about seventy dollars. This means I may actually be able to play video games for the first time in my life without controller agony. I am excited! The possibilities are endless. For more details, click here.

     I choose to believe 2013 is going to bring great things, because my glass is perennially half-full to full. My rose colored glasses are on (they block Fox News reception) and I am keeping it that way. May your New Year be blessed with joy.

Love from Delta.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The Next Big Thing

Kimberly Brock, uber-talented author of The River Witch, invited me to participate in this Q&A session regarding my new book. I have been talking about Don't Shoot Your Mule incessantly—to family, friends and the occasional terrified stranger on the street. It's probably unfair to foist more information on an unsuspecting public, but Kimberly asked. Blame her.

What is your working title of your book?
It's no longer a "working title." The title has finished working and is sliding across a polished wood floor in slippery cotton socks. Don't Shoot Your Mule was introduced on November 23rd of this year. 

Where did the idea come from for the book?
I wanted to bring the title character from my first book, Delaney's People, into the present. As my writing tends to be Alabama-centric, it was natural to craft stories about Delaney and her family that included April, 2011's monster tornadoes and their impact on the state. New people and ideas cropped up from there, awakening me daily once I got started. Some of them really surprised me!

What genre does your book fall under? 
Don't Shoot Your Mule definitely falls into the "Southern Lit" category. In 1997, scholar Jerry Leath Mills called dead mules "generic signifiers" in 20th century Southern Literature. He argued that the one unifying factor in all Southern Lit is that any novel or short story will have a dead mule in it. He cited more than 200 examples from the works of Faulkner, Erskine Caldwell, Richard Wright and, of course, Doris Betts’ story “Dead Mule.”
In Truman Capote’s “Other Voices, Other Rooms,” a mule named John Brown is found hanging from a chandelier in a decaying Southern mansion with a spittoon tied to its leg. Nothing quite so dramatic happens to Percy the Mule in my book.

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
I hate to assign faces to my characters, preferring them to conjure in readers' imaginations. However, I have been known to say Delaney looks like a young Drew Barrymore in my head.

Ellen resembles elegant Ellen Burstyn; it's how I see her, anyway.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
I am almost incapable of formulating a one-sentence synopsis of anything. Hmm . . . Don't Shoot Your Mule combines the best of The South with the worst mule-shooting tendencies. How's that for vague?

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
This novel was self-published after I was swallowed up by an unscrupulous agent and narrowly escaped her razor-sharp teeth and claws. Enough said!

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
It took a bit less than one year, which feels like five years in writer time.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
I am uncomfortable comparing my work to others'. I'll leave that to readers, and will be fascinated to see what they'll say. Tell me, y'all!

Who or what inspired you to write this book?
Delaney's relationship with her beloved great-grandmother is rooted in mine with my wonderful grandmother Lucile, who passed away in May of last year. Writing the sequel helped me cope with that awful loss. Don't Shoot Your Mule is dedicated to her.

One of the great blessings I received was a large number of requests for more about Delaney and her family. People asked at book signings, on Facebook and via email to know what happened next. That was great inspiration as well.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
1. I promise surprises and suspense, humor and romance.
2. Readers find out why generations of Robinson Family women in Alabama yell, "Don't shoot your mule!" at their husbands. The expression's been handed down with a story about an ancestor who lost his temper and did just that. I'll take you back to 1932 and let you see what really happened.
3. It's not about politics. (Escape together, shall we?)
4. One character in this book is an aspiring writer, and you'll get to read a cool story-within-a-story she's written for a contest.
5. Five words: femme fatale Kara Lee Evans.
6. If you read Delaney's People, you'll find interesting twists related to Delaney's Irish ancestry. (It is not necessary to have read the first book to enjoy this one, but there are some "inside references.")
7. My first review for this book: "I just finished reading Don't Shoot Your Mule by Beth Duke. It is brilliantly written. I had chills when I read the last chapter (as I did when I read the first chapter), an effect you get if you have read Delaney's People first. It is one of those books you don't want to end, you want to see what happens next. I got very attached to the characters. Beth so easily brought them to life for me. I would love to see Don't Shoot Your Mule on the best-sellers list. I hope there will be many more novels to come. Thank you Beth Duke for a great read."
8. If you're a teacher, you'll be happy to find they're always heroes and heroines in my work. I am in awe of good educators. (Makes a superb teacher gift, too.)
9. I like writing from a number of different perspectives. My style is a bit different, and readers tell me they enjoy it.
10. The back cover says, "She calls her books 'love letters' to her home state. Bless your heart for buying this one." 
Please do, with my sincere wish you'll love it.

Please meet these fabulous writers and explore their work:

Janie Dempsey Watts, author of MOON OVER TAYLOR'S RIDGE

Tim Westover, author of AURARIA and BABY, BOOK AND BANJO

Message for tagged authors:
Rules of the Next Big Thing
***Use this format for your post
***Answer the ten questions about your current WIP (work in progress)
***Tag five other writers/bloggers and add their links so we can hop over and meet them. Be sure to line up your five people in advance. (I’ve seen these posts run with fewer tagged writers, so no pressure.)

Ten Interview Questions for the Next Big Thing:
What is your working title of your book?
Where did the idea come from for the book?
What genre does your book fall under?
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
Who or what inspired you to write this book?
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
Include the link of who tagged you and this explanation for the people you have tagged.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Don't Destroy The Best Thing You Have Going For You . . .

. . . or: Don't Shoot Your Mule.

The title of my new book takes its name from an object lesson learned by one Weston Robinson, great-great-great uncle of Delaney and red-clay poor in Alabama during the Great Depression. Generations of family lore have led to admonitions of the title phrase instead of "don't lose your temper."

None of us should shoot our mules and lose everything in the process.

Readers find out about halfway through the novel what actually happened to beleaguered Weston during his crisis. It's a bit of a surprise.

In 2011, his descendants are dealing with crises of their own, many of which stem from their actions and some that dropped from the clear blue Alabama skies on April 27th.

We are still recovering from the devastating tornadoes that day, rebuilding and looking toward a brighter tomorrow.

It is my hope that Don't Shoot Your Mule takes you on an adventure, touching your heart and blessing it at the same time.

Thank you for the opportunity to tell this story and those of this state's fine people who weathered the storms of last year. It is an honor.


Love from Delta.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Apocalips Now.


     The disturbing photo at right is of Ivone Weldon, the mother of an actor who worked on The Expendables 2. It's possible she summoned forty bees to her mouth to create this stunning smile, though collagen is the more likely culprit.

     Why are we living in The Age of the Trout Pout?


     Maybe it started with the classic beauty of Bardot . . .

     . . . or La Liz . . .

. . . but clearly, the trend has gotten out of hand.

    I am pretty sure this woman bears some blame, though her mouth appears to be God-given. Good for Angelina. Not so good for the thousands of women trying unsuccessfully to replicate her pillow lips, where Brad no doubt rests comfortably each evening.


     Note to Natalie: please leave this alone.


     In the absence of a beehive, women would do well to bite their lips for a little color a la Scarlett O'Hara and put some gloss on. Surely cosmetic surgeons can find better projects to embrace than the ubiquitous duck face.

Love from Delta.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Hey, Mr. Travis . . .

 Randy, I'm gonna love you forever and ever (amen) but you really messed up this time.

It's bad enough that you were naked. You're a country music superstar and you were driving a Trans Am?

You threatened to shoot and kill the troopers who arrested you?

Even Nick Nolte managed the dignity to be apprehended in a Mercedes. Plus, he had colorful clothing.

Mel Gibson did it a Lexus and inflamed the entire Jewish population of the world. But again, he had his shirt on.

One wonders, "Why an old Pontiac?" 

One wonders, "Why naked?"

Mostly one wonders, "Are you about to be represented by one of three wooden crosses?"

Get help, Randy. The country music world does not need an aging male Amy Winehouse.

Love from Delta.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Every Once In A While . . .

. . . a commercial comes along that touches my heart and restores my faith in the advertising world. British retailer John Lewis spent the equivalent of nine million U.S. dollars to film this gem, and I think it was worth every penny.

Nine actresses portray the central female character in the shoot. John Lewis items are strategically 'product-placed' in each of the shots.

It spans seventy years and the message is quite clear: Treasure your life and family.


Love from Delta.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Deireadh Seachtaine Happy!

That's Irish for "Happy Weekend!"

One of my very dearest friends, Beth Monette, lives many miles away. She is always in my heart, however, and has an uncanny way of sending me videos and jokes that are perfectly appropriate to my mood.

This is a great example. I hope it brightens your Saturday as much as it did mine.

Love from Delta.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Sorry, Lindsay.

I don't mean this ugly, but . . . Lindsay Lohan has taken on a role that her agent probably should have delicately suggested inappropriate. After her tumultuous years in the public eye, she has the bad-publicity cred to portray Elizabeth Taylor. But she does not have the looks. Just sayin'.

An iconic beauty like La Liz deserves an actress like Natalie Portman or Keira Knightley stepping into her stilettos and eyeliner. Sheesh, even Kate Winslet has the brows, at least.

Somehow, Hollywood's Problem Child du jour found herself trying to do the job in a biopic to be aired on Lifetime.

The previews from the set are disturbingly off the mark, in my opinion. I'll let you be the judge.

I hope Lindsay can pull it off, but I have my doubts. Where is Vivien Leigh when you need her?

Love from Delta.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Mother's Day With Love

Happy Mother's Day to all the dedicated, beautiful, strong, loving mothers I know. 

That's my mama and Mamas

A mother is a person who seeing there are only four pieces of pie for five people, promptly announces she never did care for pie.  ~Tenneva Jordan

Mom at five feeding chickens

Being a full-time mother is one of the highest salaried jobs in my field, since the payment is pure love.  ~Mildred B. Vermont

A suburban mother's role is to deliver children obstetrically once, and by car forever after.  ~Peter De Vries

The phrase "working mother" is redundant.  ~Jane Sellman

Mother and her cousin at four

The moment a child is born, the mother is also born.  She never existed before.  The woman existed, but the mother, never.  A mother is something absolutely new.  ~Rajneesh

If the whole world were put into one scale, and my mother in the other, the whole world would kick the beam.  ~Lord Langdale (Henry Bickersteth)

I remember my mother's prayers and they have always followed me.  They have clung to me all my life.  ~Abraham Lincoln

Four generations
Some mothers are kissing mothers and some are scolding mothers, but it is love just the same, and most mothers kiss and scold together.  ~Pearl S. Buck

If you have a mom, there is nowhere you are likely to go where a prayer has not already been.  ~Robert Brault

Sweater, n.:  garment worn by child when its mother is feeling chilly.  ~Ambrose Bierce

Women's Liberation is just a lot of foolishness.  It's the men who are discriminated against.  They can't bear children.  And no one's likely to do anything about that.  ~Golda Meir

The real religion of the world comes from women much more than from men - from mothers most of all, who carry the key of our souls in their bosoms.  ~Oliver Wendell Holmes

The heart of a mother is a deep abyss at the bottom of which you will always find forgiveness.  ~HonorĂ© de Balzac

All women become like their mothers.  That is their tragedy.  No man does.  That's his.  ~Oscar Wilde, The Importance of Being Earnest, 1895

An ounce of mother is worth a pound of clergy.  ~Spanish Proverb

She never quite leaves her children at home, even when she doesn't take them along.  ~Margaret Culkin Banning

When you are a mother, you are never really alone in your thoughts.  A mother always has to think twice, once for herself and once for her child.  ~Sophia Loren, Women and Beauty

If evolution really works, how come mothers only have two hands?  ~Milton Berle

Women are aristocrats, and it is always the mother who makes us feel that we belong to the better sort.  ~John Lancaster Spalding

Motherhood has a very humanizing effect.  Everything gets reduced to essentials.  ~Meryl Streep

The sweetest sounds to mortals given
Are heard in Mother, Home, and Heaven.
~William Goldsmith Brown

The formative period for building character for eternity is in the nursery. The mother is queen of that realm and sways a scepter more potent than that of kings or priests. ~Author Unknown

Mother love is the fuel that enables a normal human being to do the impossible.  ~Marion C. Garretty, quoted in A Little Spoonful of Chicken Soup for the Mother's Soul

I love my mother as the trees love water and sunshine - she helps me grow, prosper, and reach great heights.  ~Terri Guillemets

[A] mother is one to whom you hurry when you are troubled.  ~Emily Dickinson

A mother is the truest friend we have, when trials heavy and sudden, fall upon us; when adversity takes the place of prosperity; when friends who rejoice with us in our sunshine desert us; when trouble thickens around us, still will she cling to us, and endeavor by her kind precepts and counsels to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and cause peace to return to our hearts.  ~Washington Irving

Any mother could perform the jobs of several air traffic controllers with ease.  ~Lisa Alther

Now, as always, the most automated appliance in a household is the mother.  ~Beverly Jones

Love from Delta.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

That Is Just Wrong, Y'all.

What Southern Food Really Looks Like.
      It seems that one of the more de rigueur cuisines in fancy New York restaurants is "Southern Fusion." A true denizen of The South might be appalled at some of these offerings:

     At Seersucker, you can dine on black pepper ricotta dumplings, Ozark country ham, market nettles and Georgia olive oil. (This is Southern? What is a market nettle, and why would one consume it? Georgia produces olive oil?)

     GQ magazine says, "Seersucker is 'the perfect place for your NASCAR appetite to meet your NPR lifestyle.'


This is what they are referring to as "Market Nettles." I had to know.

     The Redhead will ship you bacon peanut brittle. (Bacon is being routinely abused these days.)

     From Tipsy Parson: lemon-cornmeal pancakes. (Ugh.)


     Winner of the Lord Have Mercy category . . . Lowcountry serves Breakfast in a Jar, consisting of stone ground grits, goat cheese, a soft poached egg, and candied bacon. In a jar.

      SoCo, (Southern Fusion, a new cuisine yet to make its mark on the New York dining scene!) dishes up organic buttermilk fried chicken over red velvet waffles.

Dear Chefs of New York,
     Red velvet does this: 

and this.

     Anything else will confuse it.

     I don't think Southern food needs to be "fused" in the first place. It is fine exactly as it's been for a hundred years or so. Y'all should make a field trip to Mary Mac's Tea Room in Atlanta or Classic on Noble in Anniston, Alabama. Or to my kitchen table.


     I've not been to New York City in quite a while. I know there are many wonderful things to see and do on my next trip, but locating Southern Fusion won't be on the list. Some things are simply not to be tampered with.

     Here is a classic recipe for those who cherish Dixie food:

Buttermilk Biscuits
(makes 10-12)

2 cups self-rising flour
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
dash of salt
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 cup Crisco shortening
3/4 cup buttermilk

Heat oven to 400 degrees and grease a baking sheet. Mix all dry ingredients in a large bowl, then cut the shortening in with your fingers or two forks. Add the buttermilk. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured board and roll to about a 3/4 inch thickness, trying not to mix in extra flour. Cut with a three inch biscuit cutter (or a glass if you must) and place on baking sheet. 
Bake for ten to twelve minutes or until lightly browned.

Serve hot with butter and honey or your favorite jam. Do not insult the biscuits with strange things.

Love from Delta.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Atheists Don't Have No Songs . . .

"Christians have their hymns and pages,
Hava Nagila’s
for the Jews,
Baptists have the rock of ages,
Atheists just sing the blues."

Regardless of religious persuasion, you have to laugh at Steve Martin's brilliant contribution to the world: the first hymn for atheists.

Funny guy.

Love and Happy Sunday from Delta.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Don't Shoot Your Mule

     As a writer, I cannot tell you how thrilled I was to see this photo posted on Facebook today. A charming, erudite gentleman reading my very own Delaney's People.

     Wow. And the charming erudite gentleman is from Vermont, to boot.

     I began creating stories in 2008 and shared them with my daughter, mom and a few friends. I never dreamed they'd be enjoyed on a cruise ship vacation.

     These days I am consumed with sequel-writing. The new book will be called Don't Shoot Your Mule. According to one of my idols, Alabama's own Rick Bragg, authentic Southern writers must kill mules. It is my good fortune to have an ancestor with a rather colorful mule murder, and I have found a way to incorporate the tale.

     Delaney will still figure prominently as a twelve-year-old. She and her family experienced Alabama's historic tornado outbreak of April 27, 2011. Chronicling the destruction and recovery is part of the process, and my friend Margaret Higgins Pendley supplied an informative book to add to my own experience.

     It is an honor to write about my home state's noble people and their warm hearts.

     Thank you to those who have purchased and read my work. I hope Don't Shoot Your Mule takes you to places you've never been and leaves you wanting more.

Love from Delta.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

You are a child of the universe.


Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and ignorant; they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter;
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals;
and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Be yourself.
Especially, do not feign affection.
Neither be critical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass.
Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness. Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.
Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be,
and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.
With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy.
© Max Ehrmann 1927 

Take a moment to listen to the Hayden Planetarium's Neil DeGrasse Tyson. In this fascinating video he reveals his idea of the most astounding fact about our universe. I was inspired to dust off my old favorite Desiderata and remind you, my friends, that no doubt it is unfolding as it should.

Happy Sunday with love from Delta.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Les Musts de Cartier . . .

My mother, a long-time Cartier fan, told me about this amazing commercial today. Watch!

Beautifully done.

Click to read AdWeek's comments.

Love from Delta.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

With Keyboard In Hand

"What Writing Is"

     "Telepathy, of course. It's amazing when you stop to think about it—for years people have argued about whether or not such a thing exists, folks like J. B. Rhine have busted their brains trying to create a valid testing process to isolate it, and all the time it's been right there, lying out in the open like Mr. Poe's Purloined Letter. All the arts depend upon telepathy to some degree, but I believe that writing offers the purest distillation."

- Stephen King 
On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft Copyright 2000

     No one could express it better. Every writer worth his or her ink sends a reader to places they've never been and brings them home with memories they've never experienced in the corporeal sense.

     Seeing Delaney's People in print is one of the great joys of my life. Most days I hear from someone saying they loved the book or enjoyed traveling along with me and my imagination. Those comments are treasured.

     In three days I will be hosting my Very First Book Signing. It is no exaggeration to say that I did not dare to dream such a thing for most of my life. Throughout years of event planning I learned a lot about throwing a party (thank you, Junior League!) and I am giddy at the mere thought of this one.

     Today's post is a giant, heartfelt thank you to all the people who believed in my writing and read every word of each draft, from rough to less rough to polished. They are named on the acknowledgements page, and I am more grateful than I can say.

     If you've read the book, you are familiar with Margaret. She embodies some of the very best characteristics of my beloved grandmother, Lucile Kadle Holder Sodeman. There would be no Margaret without my "Mamas." It breaks my heart that I lost her before Delaney's People was published, but I feel her with me every step of the way. Her spirit will be there Saturday. 

     Writing has always made me happy. Hearing from those who have enjoyed my work . . . well, that's more than I could have asked for. 

Love from Delta.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

What If . . .

I do not know Molly Watkins, but I sure do like her style. "What If" embodies some excellent points to be taken to heart, and I am proud to promote it here. Please watch and share with your friends!

Love from Delta.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Complicated Life, Simple Food

With a plot (pun intended) reminiscent of Barbara Kingsolver's Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, "Eating Alabama" chronicles a young couple's return home to Alabama where they set out to eat the way their grandparents did—locally and seasonally. 

The documentary will have its world premiere at the SXSW Film Festival in Austin, March 9-14.

Tuscaloosa's Andrew Grace and his wife, Rashmi—both of whom were raised in suburbia—spent a challenging year that produced moments of comedy and episodes of adventure, but also some deep thoughts about the rapid pace of change and what may have been irrevocably lost in the rush to modernity.

 Watch the trailer . . . this looks good.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day With Love

Let's start with the cynical:

Unfortunate Coincidence

By the time you swear you're his,
Shivering and sighing,
And he vows his passion is
Infinite, undying -
Lady, make a note of this:
One of you is lying.

-Dorothy Parker

Here are some lovely love thoughts for your Valentine's Day enjoyment:

"Each moment of a happy lover's hour is worth an age of dull and common life." -Aphra Behn

"You know you're in love when you can't fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams." -Dr. Seuss

"Love is the condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own." -Robert Heinlein

"For you see, each day I love you more, today more than yesterday and less than tomorrow." -Rosemonde Gerard

"For it was not into my ear you whispered, but into my heart. It was not my lips you kissed, but my soul." -Judy Garland

"If I could be anything in the world I would want to be a teardrop because I would be born in your eyes, live on your cheeks, and die on your lips." -Author Unknown

"Love is something eternal; the aspect may change, but not the essence." -Vincent van Gogh

"Love is a promise, love is a souvenir, once given never forgotten, never let it disappear." -John Lennon

"Trip over love, you can get up. Fall in love and you fall forever." -Author Unknown

"Anyone can catch your eye, but it takes someone special to catch your heart." -Author Unknown

"Love is a smoke made with the fume of sighs." -William Shakespeare

"The minute I heard my first love story I started looking for you, not knowing how blind that was. Lovers don't finally meet somewhere. They're in each other all along." -Jalal ad-Din Rumi

"Love is the only gold." -Lord Alfred Tennyson

"To love is to receive a glimpse of heaven." -Karen Sunde

"When love is not madness, it is not love." -Pedro Calderon de la Barca

"Loving is not just looking at each other, it's looking in the same direction." -Antoine de Saint-Exupery

My All Time Favorite John Donne Love Poem:

The Baite

Come live with me, and be my love,
And we will some new pleasures prove
Of golden sands, and crystal brooks,
With silken lines and silver hooks.

There will the river whisp'ring run
Warm'd by thy eyes, more than the sun ;
And there th' enamour'd fish will stay,
Begging themselves they may betray.

When thou wilt swim in that live bath,
Each fish, which every channel hath,
Will amorously to thee swim,
Gladder to catch thee, than thou him.

If thou, to be so seen, be'st loth,
By sun or moon, thou dark'nest both,
And if myself have leave to see,
I need not their light, having thee.

Let others freeze with angling reeds,
And cut their legs with shells and weeds,
Or treacherously poor fish beset,
With strangling snare, or windowy net.

Let coarse bold hands from slimy nest
The bedded fish in banks out-wrest ;
Or curious traitors, sleeve-silk flies,
Bewitch poor fishes' wand'ring eyes.

For thee, thou need'st no such deceit,
For thou thyself art thine own bait :
That fish, that is not catch'd thereby,
Alas ! is wiser far than I.

and . . . 

Since I am on an Adele kick, here's one of the best angsty love songs ever: 

Happy Valentine's Day to you and the most special people in your life.

 Love from Delta.