The Way I Sees ‘Em

I’m excited to let you know that my brand-new anthology of stories has just been released—I Calls ‘Em The Way I Sees ‘Em: Tales of a Capricious Critic. It joins six previous books of tales, along with eight crime fiction novels, in my published portfolio.

The story goes that a long-ago baseball umpire was explaining his method for calling balls and strikes. “They ain’t nothin’ ‘til I calls ‘em,” he declared. “An’ I calls ‘em the way I sees ‘em!”

That’s what I have tried to do in this collection of short essays and poems, addressing some of the issues facing all of us today—questions and concerns about the society we live in from my perspective as a capricious critic of our world with all its systemic injustices and prejudices.

The book is available for preview at this safe link—https://www.lulu.com/spotlight/precept

There are easy calls, hard calls, and poetic calls described in the book, plus a few tales explaining why I bother to make the calls at all. I hope you’ll take time to check them out because, if you enjoy reading my blog, I think you’ll enjoy the tales I’ve spun.

To whet your appetite, here is an example of one of those poetic calls, written shortly after my father’s death to commemorate our relationship—

The Railwayman

You’d take me down beside the rails to watch the trains go storming by,
And tell me all those wond’rous tales of engineers who sat on high,
In cabs of steel, and steam, and smoke; of firemen in their floppy hats,
The coal they’d move, the fires they’d stoke, as o’er the hills and ‘cross the flats
The locomotives huffed and steamed, their whistles blowing long and loud.
And one small boy, he stood and dreamed beside his daddy, tall and proud.

Terrifying monsters were they, bearing down upon us two, who
Felt their force on that steel highway, hearts a-racing ---loving, true.
I’d almost flinch as on they came toward us, with their dragon-face
A-belching, spewing, throwing flame and steam and smoke o’er ev’ry place.
But you’d stand fast beside the track, and, oh! the spectacle was grand.
So, unafraid, I’d not step back, ‘cause you were there holding my hand.

Oh, Railwayman, oh, Railwayman, I’m glad you knew when you grew old,
How much I loved you---Dad, my friend---who shared with me your dreams untold.
Oh, Railwayman, oh, Railwayman, if I, beside you once again,
Could only stand safe in your hand, awaiting with you our next train.

All aboard, Dad…all aboard!

Please visit https://www.lulu.com/spotlight/precept to have a look at this new collection of tales, and all my books—and please pass this information along to any friends who might be interested.

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