"Mixed Bouquet for a Beautiful Babe"

The Foreword to Kareninas Book

By Katherine M. Kean

When we heard about your traumatic accident,

we wanted to start something that would show you that we love you and admire you. We admire your skills, but also your generosity and bravery. We love you just the way you are, and because you are.

We both have special private thoughts and memories that we share with you alone, but our response to your trauma went beyond privacy. We wanted to share with as many of your FS friends as we could, and give everyone a chance to show you how much they care.

We found ourselves on the same wavelength, immediately. A multi-author book should give everyone the chance to express their own feelings, and you some much-needed entertainment as and when you could cope with it. And so, the idea of this bouquet made up of different blooms came into being, easily and naturally.

The response has been more than we could have hoped for, but we know your recovery is still far from complete, so the book will remain open for now in the hope that your friends will continue to add items for your entertainment until you're totally well.

Let the quills continue to write, and the muses run ever more creatively.

Lots of love
Kate - Katherine M. Kean
Tim - Theodore McDowell
20th September 2021


I have been emotionally buoyed, truly touched, by the generosity of good wishes and kindness in each and every talented submission to this book you and Theo created! I could write forever and not come close to thanking the two of you---and everyone on site who has bedazzled me with hope and the determination to forge ahead and carry on and live to fight and write another day! I only wish I could have unlimited sixes for everyone, just for this brilliant and undeserved but oh so appreciated bouquet! With love and deep appreciation--
20th September 2021

Chapter 1
MS no 6; For My Very Dear Friend

By Katherine M. Kean

I read of hands turned into claws
a witch involved here that's for sure -
this can't be you, you've not the flaws
as your demeanour is demure.

I dreamt of tendons poked and mauled
a vicious animal bit hard -
he's named not Naomi nor Saul
though they both leave a wound that's scarred.

I feared for loss of function - touch
unfeeling, stiff and slow with pain -
but physio restores the clutch
and grants to wounds their motor gain.

So, time will tell that all is well
As you will dwell in charmed dell.

Author Notes This is my first attempt at a Modern Sonnet without a tutor. I miss you Boss.

The short lines, hyphens and slant rhyme are intended to be suggestive of Emily Dickinson's writing.

I'm rooting for you and your speedy recovery, my dear.


Please, for readers who would like to add a chapter to this book for Karenina, read these instructions then copy and paste to your author notes. If you need help, please do not hesitate to contact Katherine M. Kean.

Steps to Post a Chapter:
click on the ADD CHAPTER icon, located above the review box.
Post your poem or story as usual but it will be part of the book. A copy will go to your portfolio and you keep your reviews.

Chapter 2
Experiencing a Review by K

By Katherine M. Kean

Pure unshackled free verse genius,
free flow stream of consciousness.
I’m sitting in the Village Vanguard
with my eyes closed, swaying, heartbeat
syncopating to a solo by a sax master.
She can play the blues, the bruises
of my heart, or Trane’s sheets of sound,
a deluge of beauty and grace.
She’s got a smooth sound like Stan Getz,
sweeter and thicker than Tupelo honey.
She can rag it up or get my feet jiving
with swing, my smile emerges bright,
the size of the crescent moon,
the rush, a flash flood, a surge of images
running hard through a dry riverbed.
She can slow groove a ballad
sacred and beautiful as stained glass,
mournful as a mother’s grief,
aching with lost innocence, lingering
in the silence between the words.
I close my eyes, waiting in the holy
cathedral of jazz, following her chord
changes, the blinding arpeggios,
the melodic improvisations that silence
my grieving heart, resuscitate hope,
waiting to erupt,
the crowd on its feet,
waiting to feel alive again.


Chapter 3
Dear Karenina

By Katherine M. Kean

When time burns slow upon the grate
and you can't do a thing but wait,
just turn your mind to poetry,
to metered poems, or verses free.

Perhaps you'll think up lengthy tomes,
or witty lines by funny gnomes.
I'm sure you've got the nerve and skill
to write in trochee or dactyl.

But wait, what if your mind runs free
and you create a mystery;
A new form filled with twists and curls;
not for the boys, just for us girls. :)

Now, Karenina, don't be shy,
 let your imagination fly...
Just air your thoughts and dust your mind,
and you'll find you've run out of time.


Author Notes I hope you recover quickly from your surgery, dear Karenina!! :)

Trochee and dactyl are two forms of poetic meter.

Artwork by Bev Doolittle

Chapter 4
Her Loving Hands

By Katherine M. Kean

Her grace pours out through loving hands
Her nurse’s brain directs commands
At work or home, each one is blessed
Her expert care promotes good rest

Her drive to do - we understand
Her grace pours out through loving hands
Which typed so many words of cheer
Reviewing works that we post here

But now the DO-er STILL must stay
For full recov’ry we all pray
Her grace pours out through loving hands
Her surgery has changed some plans

We hope to read her golden words
Which heart and spirit gently stir
Karenina - your verse expands
Such grace pours out your loving hands

Author Notes Karenina had surgery last week Thursday and is recovering. Let's pray for her full recovery and the patience to let others "do" for her. It's hard for those who are used to caring for others to stay still and receive care.

Thank you, Kate, for creating this book!

Chapter 5
The Third Time's the Worst!

By Katherine M. Kean

Last month, at my urging, Karenina posted, word for word, her brilliantly wry and witty off-the-cuff review of one of my stories.

She relates, with trademark touches of dark humor, the dreadful saga of a botched dilation of her pupils, due to a five-fold administration of eye drops by a first-timer ophthalmologist assistant.

Karenina's eyes were messed up for five days, during the course of which she suffered an agonizing headache.

Notwithstanding her suffering, Karenina intervened in behalf of the rookie, who'd been dismissed forthwith for her blunder. She threatened to sue the practice ... unless the woman was reinstated. (She was!)

Less than a month prior, Karenina's husband, Ed, nearly died of sepsis, consequent to a botched colonoscopy that resulted in perforation of his colon. Though Ed survived his ordeal, his recovery process is far from complete.

Which is especially unfortunate given Karenina's recovery process has just begun.

Two weeks ago, Karenina was nearly killed when an uninsured drunk driver crashed into her car; she sustained severe injuries to her face and jaw, requiring 51 stitches.

Karenina suffered a concussion to boot.

As the coup de grâce, several vertebrae were cracked, for which Karenina just underwent surgical implant of metal screws (?)

The surgery was even more involved than anticipated; she messaged me two days thereafter, by proxy of her daughter's hands. Her own pair are out of commission, from which I infer (tentatively) that the vertebrae intervention impacted the nerves. 

Astoundingly, Karenina has, with the logistical assistance of her daughter, maintained the impressive volume and stellar quality of reviews.

Karenina is a self-made miracle; notwithstanding which she'll surely welcome the boost of our collective support, as enhanced with prayers from those of faith.

Whoever among you volunteers to write the next chapter of The Book of K (so to speak), get to work!


Author Notes Helza Blaze by MoonWillow on THANK YOU!

Chapter 6
Your Words are Pure Gold

By Katherine M. Kean

Every once in a while a serendipity happens
and I smile because, well these are rare

I count myself lucky, kiss my rabbit foot 
 knock on wood, and if I could, I'd invite

you over, oh, I  would in a heartbeat, to have
coffee at the kitchen table or a beer on the patio
and share a morning, an evening just enjoying
each other's company - no strings - no agenda

From one writer to another, laughing about life's
gifts, conundrums, joys, heartaches, tragedies 
the understanding is there, no need for tiring
explanations, the validation is there, the satisfaction

Thanks for your words that run like pure gold
on the black slate of life and for that unspoken
bond, an invisible thread that connects, that
sparks meaning into the rampant psychobabble-verse
that tomorrow will be a good place after all



Author Notes * Free Verse for Karenina

* Beautiful painting by Valerie Ramos. Detail from - Let the Waters Flow and Dry Ground Appear.- Pastel on sanded paper.

Chapter 7
Walking in Sunshine

By Katherine M. Kean

Searching for the right words
Blurred in an avalanche of snow
A 1960s television screen of Twilight Zone

What, where, when, why, and how
Terrible things happen without reason
Fickle fate off course and out of control

Wishing and hoping the worst is over
That soon, you'll be happy and healthy again
Walking in sunshine by the river walk

Now, be a good patient, and get better soon
Laughter the best medicine, most will say
But listen to me, and take the morphine!

Author Notes I don't do poetry, so please be nice. I just wanted to take a minute to wish Karenina well!

Chapter 8

By Katherine M. Kean

This is for you, my dear friend
Sending good vibes while you mend

Knowledgeable, kind, and keen
Admirable, word binding Queen
Resourceful, radiant, and resilient
Encouragement, halo of brilliance
Natural poet, special spirit
Inspiring, cherishes lyrics
Normal-wait who am I talking about?
Aha! I can't be too sweet, I'll lose clout

Author Notes Please, for readers who would like to add a chapter to this book for Karenina, read these instructions then copy and paste to your author notes. If you need help, please do not hesitate to contact Katherine M. Kean.

Steps to Post a Chapter:
click on the ADD CHAPTER icon, located above the review box.
Post your poem or story as usual but it will be part of the book. A copy will go to your portfolio and you keep your reviews.

Chapter 10
For Karenina

By Katherine M. Kean


These puffy little birds
Never ask a thing of me
Nor I — of them
Curious — they are
Though they would
Never say — they were
What do they talk about?
Something grand—
Or — perhaps—
Random thoughts
Only they would know—
Oh— to be a bird—
Amidst a chirping
coffee klatch—
A sweeter sound
Could not be heard—
For  I

Dear Karenina,

These little birds told me you really like
Emily Dickinson's poetry.

You were my inspiration for writing this.
I have never tried to write in her style.

"hope is the thing with feathers" is
my favorite so these little birds
worked their magic, and the poem
was created.

Take care of yourself,
and I hope you are better each day.

Your friend,

Author Notes -The image is from Bing.

-Two of Emily Dickinson's poems are referred to in mine:
"Hope is the thing with feathers" and "I dwell in Possibility."

-If you want to add a chapter, make sure you check if it is listed as poetry or fiction before you release it.

Chapter 11
Our Fiesty Friend, Karenina

By Katherine M. Kean

Tall pines stretched upward like scorched arrows. Dark tree trunks cast ominous shadows, like stealth ninjas, moving beneath the overhanging limbs, blocking my path. The wind howled like a sad symphony. Grief and sorrow cloaked the dimming moon and washed away the stars. The inspiration from my pen ran dry.

Returning to FanStory, in search of a new beginning, was lackluster at the most. My inner GPS was off track. My muse had packed up and headed for parts unknown. If this wasn't where I was supposed to be, then what?

During my usual talk with the Lord, I dumped all my sorrow at his feet, asking him what I should do. Begin Again had lost the ability to fight. I wanted to give up on myself and my love of writing.

That day, I received a blessing beyond anything I could have imagined. Not with gold, diamonds, or even creativity galore. Instead, I opened a review, and this adorable face with an impish grin was waiting for me. I didn't know it then, but it wouldn't take long; I learned the Lord had placed a friend by my side; one who gave me the armor to fight the war and win. A caring, unselfish, sweet, adorable friend.

I believe God sends us special friends to share our lives; friends that we can share our doubts and fears. Friends we can talk to without being judged and laugh with until it hurts too much. Those special people who give of themselves freely and don't expect anything in return. Someone who faces their own challenges, but still has time to reach out to comfort and encourage you.

God blessed me, and so many others, with a priceless gift. Karenina, sweet Karenina, brightens my mornings with her humor, kindness, and so much more. She's one of God's special angels.

Her road to recovery won't be an easy one, but I pray that the love of so many that adore her, will help brighten her day. I hope that her days are filled with joy and pleasant memories of the little things we shared. I hope the poems and thoughts everyone has sent her will help as she faces each day. I pray the Lord sends a multitude of angels to watch over her and give her strength and courage.

Tonight, the moon shines bright, and thousands of stars twinkle in the sky. We are blessed to have angels amongst us, and I hope my favorite returns real soon. I am sure God knows how special she is to us... to me... and I'm hoping she knows too.

Here's a basket of love, smiles, and hugs to brighten your day and bring you back to us very soon.

Chapter 12
When Trouble Comes

By Katherine M. Kean

When trouble saps our inner strength, and taunts at every turn,
we know the test is evident, for peace we always yearn;
the journey means we learn to fight, each step helps us to know
that to survive we see the light, agree to undergo . . .

the medicine, the surgery, the hospital is home,
no matter who supports us here, we always feel alone.
The battle to get well can seem like fighting all the odds,
with no alternative, we strive to war with vicious dogs.

But when we win we feel the heavy burden has been lifted
as body, mind and soul survive, our faith is truly gifted;
another day we gain our strength with progress that we make,
the future's bright, and smiles ignite the path to our escape.

When trouble comes we face adversity without a cry--
with inner hope and energy, we look it in the eye.

Author Notes Get well soon Karenina.

Chapter 13
Eagle has no fear of adversity

By Katherine M. Kean

All of us, at some point in our lives, 
go through times of illness,
But with the support and love of family and friends
days are easier to cope with.
So, I send you a big hug.
Do you see that not everything is negative?
It causes me a little sadness 
That you are going through 
this imbalance in health.
It is time to trust more than ever in God
because for Him, there is nothing impossible. 

The body is like a machine 
that sometimes fails
Ugly fate has attacked your body.
but not your spirit.

You are a courageous woman.
You will go through this adversity.
Encountering adversity is inevitable; 
It is a part of our human life.

Shortly you will be better than ever, 
spreading joy to everyone. 
Spread your wings like an eagle
The eagle has no fear of adversity. 

Get healed quickly. 
You have that spirit in you
There is no fun without you.

Thinking of you and praying for you 

Author Notes I am dedicating this free verse poem to Karenina, my good friend.

Chapter 14
Loving Hands

By Katherine M. Kean


loving hands

count beads on her rosary —

prayer ascension



Author Notes Ascension: the bodily ascending of Christ from earth to heaven.

This poem is dedicated to Karenina who is recuperating from surgery, Katherine M. Kean created this book in her honor. If you would like to add a chapter to this book for Karenina, read these instructions then copy and paste to your author notes. If you need help, please do not hesitate to contact Katherine M. Kean. Steps to Post a Chapter: click on the ADD CHAPTER icon, located above the review box. Post your poem or story as usual but it will be part of the book. A copy will go to your portfolio and you keep your reviews.

SENRYU is a Japanese poetic form similar to haiku but focus on human nature and it doesn't require a season word (kigo). It's written in 17 syllables OR LESS. It can be humorous or serious. It goes back to late 18th century Japan. *** source: wikipedia *** collection of senryu

Thank you very much for reading my poem.


Chapter 15
Wish You Were Here...

By Katherine M. Kean

Please cut through my fluff and slice through these weeds;
I know your wise thoughts will help me succeed.
You’re gentle and kind; you’re patient and sweet.
You smooth out my scansion; help ‘meter’ my feet.
Each comment’s on point; I learn from a pro,
and keep ev’ry tip up here as I go.
With great stacks of ribbons to rest your pride on,
we need you each moment and miss you when gone!
Enjoy your vacation* and have you some fun;
we fans will stay here, so sad, every one.
When you’ve dawdled enough, you’ve rested and shirked,
you must come back to us and get right back to work!
I know what you’ll say: ‘vacay’s a strong word.
But, yeah, talk is cheap.  (And that’s what I heard.)
I’m sure you’re there working on some masterpiece;
you’ll arrive to surprise and reveal its release.
So, right here’s where I’ll sit as I twiddle my thumbs,
and I’ll wait, like the rest, till that marvy day comes. 
There are birds and green trees, and those things are dear,
but nothing will please until Karen’s back here.


Author Notes Author's Notes:
*vacation - she's actually having anything BUT. Please keep our buddy in your thoughts and prayers.

Chapter 16
Fairy Flowers

By Katherine M. Kean

greens, blues, so many hues
become the fairy, help for the weary

they guide us toward health
life's most important wealth

earth angels with petals as wings
listen to them, rejoice and sing

Author Notes Best wishes for Karenina.

Chapter 18
Your Courage Will Prevail

By Katherine M. Kean

There's always hope that will prevail -
you landed on disaster trail.
The fates have dealt their evil card,
we'll pray for you, our dearest bard.
Your inner strength will overcome the highest slope -
Have faith, my friend and trust the Lord - there's always hope.

You are our star, our toughest rock ~
Disasters come without a knock.
You'll overcome and persevere -
and please remember - we are here!
We all have learned from your resplendent repertoire;
Your poetry's a guiding light - you are our star.


Author Notes For karenina (Karen), my friend and mentor. I've known Karen for fifteen years, and she has always been a source of great inspiration for me. Her strength, wisdom and optimism are a guiding light. I believe in the power of a collective prayer and I am sure, with our help and prayers Karen will get through this. Just take it one day at a time, dear friend, and you'll see the sun come out again - it always does.

The Wrapped Refrain, created by Jan Turner, consists of 2 or more stanzas of 6 lines each;
Meter: 8,8,8,8,12,12 and Rhyme Scheme: a,a,b,b,c,c.

Refrain rule: In each stanza the first 4 syllables (or 4 single-syllable words) in the first line must be the last 4 syllables (or 4 single-syllable words) at the end of the last line. This is what wraps each stanza with a repeated refrain ...thus, the Wrapped Refrain.

Chapter 19

By Katherine M. Kean

I'm Feisty! How about you?
Are you - Feisty - too?
Then there's a pair of us.
Don’t tell!  they’d natter - you know.
How dreary - to be – Docile!
How safe - and dull -
To never dare the Alps
Or Chasms - below.


Author Notes For Karenina - Best wishes for a fast, smooth recovery.

Photograph: Emily Dickinson's Homestead.

Poem: a little fun with Emily, she of the wild nights.

Natter: a trivial or gossipy conversation

Chapter 20
Across the Miles

By Katherine M. Kean

Across the miles -
My dear friend – is healing
Across the miles -
I would love to visit – if I could, I would –
Friends heal with laughter!
But – if I left my Gardens –
The blue jays would certainly scold –
Oh dear! If they knew my friend, Karenina,
They’d fly to her, too  – I know they would!


Author Notes

I based my "get well poem" for Karenina on "Over the Fence" by Emily Dickinson:

Over the fence -
Strawberries - grow -
Over the fence -
I could climb - if I tried, I know -
Berries are nice!

But - if I stained my Apron -
God would certainly scold!
Oh, dear, - guess if He were a Boy -
He'd - climb - if He could!

Heal well and quickly, Karenina!

Your friend,

Chapter 20
We Miss You Karenina

By Katherine M. Kean

a little advice from me to you
I know you'll understand
do all the things the doctor says
take care of those precious hands

listen to Jess, and what she says
she's there to help you heal
she'll do the wash, clean the house
and cook all of your meals

do your therapy, don't be a slacker
stretch those digits out
and if you find it necessary
don't hesitate to shout

the time will pass, before too long
you'll be typing free of pain
 back here with your FanStory family
the totally insane

you're in our prayers, and in our thoughts
you're missed by everyone
so concentate on getting better
sending much love to you, Hun


Author Notes Karenina had surgery on both her hands. It was more than the doctors had anticipated
it would be. Her daughter (Jess) took a leave of absents to come and help her. God Bless her heart. She is now doing intense rehab while the swelling in going down.

Please keep her in your prayers.

Chapter 21
Wishing You Well

By Katherine M. Kean

I've been thinking of Karenina,
as I know many of us have.
Her wonderful sense of humour is something I miss the most.
May her hands heal well and in a short time,
so we can enjoy her lovely writing once more.

I didn't know what had happened
until a few days ago,
my thoughts are now with her and her family.

Karenina, I hope we see you soon.

Author Notes Thanks to avmurray for the use of the artwork.
I thought I could add prose to this book, but after I wrote my piece and saved it, I realised it had to be poetry. Well, I have adapted it. Let's call it free verse, but in reality, it is prose. I just wanted to let Karenina know that I'm thinking of her.

Chapter 22
For are

By Katherine M. Kean

You are so brave, but I'm a knave,
not knowing what to say.
How could I know? I've lost the flow,
my colour is dull grey.

You are a doll, I'll take a poll,
you look like you're a queen.
Now this I've seen, that you will glean,
and drink from Heaven's stream.

Get well real soon, and this I'll croon,
you're needed on this site.
So we'll all sing, and we will bring
a song to heal your plight.

Because we care, we'll say a prayer
and trust that God will do,
for you much more, from Heaven's store
and we will join on cue.

R.Owen 30/07/2021

Author Notes This is for Karenina, a dear friend and an angel-girl. She was involved in an accident and is recovering, her dear daughter Jess is answering all of Karen correspondence, both personal an fantory stuff. Wishing her a swift recovery in Jesus name.

Thanks for reading. R.Owen
Artwork by google

Chapter 23
Boundless Love

By Katherine M. Kean

Throughout those hapless, joyless days
that dupe and vex your mind
of outcomes ever bleak,
may you courage gain, far greater
than you could guess or seek

And insight, too, into your soul,
so flushed with boundless love,
may you be blessed to find,
the gift of more enraptured days
with travails left behind

Such knowing hold dear to your heart,
of light, hope 'nd belief -
the bounty it reveals;
to trust your core - the energy -
that manifests and heals

Author Notes Please, for readers who would like to add a chapter to this book for Karenina, read these instructions then copy and paste to your author notes. If you need help, please do not hesitate to contact Katherine M. Kean.

Steps to Post a Chapter:
click on the ADD CHAPTER icon, located above the review box.
Post your poem or story as usual but it will be part of the book. A copy will go to your portfolio and you keep your reviews.
Pays one point and 2 member cents.

Chapter 24
Recovery's Hard Work!

By Katherine M. Kean

The surgeon’s task’s an easy one.
He cuts and sews and bills you,
then gives to you a list of tasks--
the things he thinks you should do.
You do your rehab faithfully
and take your meds as ordered,
but progress comes so painfully
you feel you’re drawn and quartered.
Your daughter lends a helping hand,
so now you can review some,
and faithful fans will write to you
in case you’re feeling boredom.
So here’s to you, Karenina.
Good wishes we are bringing.
We hope that you will be back soon
with all your bells a’ringing.

Author Notes Picture found on Bing images.

Chapter 25
Wishing You A Speedy Recovery

By Katherine M. Kean

Karenina - such a pretty name;

I often tell you so...

You're missed by your Fanstorian fans

I'm sure you somehow know.

I said a prayer for you last night -

I felt God heard my plea.

Your hands are held in His hands, my dear...

Lie back and be carefree.

You are missed more than you'll ever know-

...Concern is shown widespread.

It is time to rest and time to heal -

Be sure to take your meds.

This time is laid aside...just for you;

To give your hands a rest.

God's always in the midst of it all -

Because you're loved and blessed.


Author Notes Artwork: Bing Images

Chapter 26
Burgeoning Bouquet for our Babe

By Katherine M. Kean

Part II:

Now You are on the Up and Up,


Author Notes Thanks to suzannethompson2 for painting Abstract bouquet

Chapter 27
Waterfalls of Grace

By Katherine M. Kean

Rave on,
The doctors in the ER,
like master butchers,
must have
carved, trimmed,
prepped, and packaged
your diagnosis
into fine cuts of pain.
Rave on,
During the accident,
your bones must have felt
like crystal shattering.

You're a stubborn warrior.
You must burst skyward
like Icarus
with steel wings, yearning to exceed
your limits,
striking at the sun
before your angel wings
melt in the foundry furnace
and you spiral downward
into the ocean
where molten steel cools.
Rave on, Karenina.
But your reviews
keep cascading
like waterfalls,
our stories with grace.
Your daughter’s fingers
translate your words
deep into the night,
your hearts are twined
like morning glory
climbing a garden trellis,
unfurling into full bloom
in the early morning.
Love, love, love on,
We pray on,
God’s grace:
working even
outside the audible spectrum,
the high trill of an angel,
working even
like ultraviolet light
or the unseen brilliance
of spiritual realms.
We pray on, Karenina,
to the great Jehovah-Rapha.


Chapter 28
Karenina, Dragon-Slayer

By Katherine M. Kean

In a magical kingdom far, far away but incredibly close through digital doors, lives a beautiful, strong, and very intelligent princess named Karenina. Whatever she puts her mind to, she achieves victoriously. She could have become anything she wanted to, but she chose to become a dragon-slayer. 

Her arsenal included a shield that is stronger than titanium, and she named it Faith. It magically resizes and reshapes itself depending on needs of the battle. Her single weapon is a diamond sword forged by angelic muses from a land called Library. She named the sword Poetry. The handle molds and re-forms uniquely to her hand and sings with her voice when she swings it in combat.

Let me tell you, Dear Reader, of some of her battles…

Once an apprentice, too green and too nervous at work, misheard and mistakenly put many more drops into our fair Karenina’s eyes. The pain and misery would have made anyone cry. The Dragon of Unmercy was swift to remove the newbie apprentice. But lo! To the surprise of all, Karenina, jumped into battle and spoke hope to the young gal. Her sword demolished the dragon with words such as these:

“Something slides within your soul,
suddenly you've taken wing.
Destination's not your goal,
just the journey - that's the thing.”*

Then in recent moons, the Dragon of Surgery emerged. But our courageous Karenina fought back and began a duet with her sword, singing:
“Life's cracked 
and imperfect...
yet new growth pushes through.”**

On the horizon, weaving in and out, the Dragon of Bureaucracy threatens to appear. But we know that even over that beast, Karenina will be victorious. Her sword will sing against the many paper minions under its command and mesmerize with:
“Torn antique lace of words we’d yet to say!” ***

The magnificent, magnanimous, nimble-fingered fairy, Jess, remains close by as Karenina prepares for her next battle. And we remain vigilant in prayer and hope to learn of new victories in the distant but sometimes too close dragons’ lair.

Author Notes Thanks to Kate for creating this book for us to share our love and prayers for Karenina!

Poetry excerpts are all written by Karenina:
*From KareninaÛ??s poem "Migration"

**From KareninaÛ??s poem "Perusing Pottery"

***From KareninaÛ??s poem "Colors of Momma"

Chapter 29
A Plea in Behalf of Karenina

By Katherine M. Kean

Karenina can't use her hand
Her pencil's attached by a band
Encircling her head
She lies in her bed
Painstakingly trying to land

The pencil point letter by letter
Reviewing a piece takes forever
Her daughter's gone home
She's working alone
Don't bug her until she's all better


Chapter 30
Thinking of You

By Katherine M. Kean

Roses are red
Violets are blue
Soon, maybe sooner
You'll be good as new.

This is so pitiful that perhaps it brought a smile, Karenina. I just wanted you to know how many friends you have here at FanStory, and we want you feeling better soon, maybe sooner.

Author Notes The image is from

Chapter 31
Climbing Up and Up

By Katherine M. Kean

Harshness; heart bursting, legs cramping, as I climb the slippery steep slope. However, this isn't new. It's my monthly struggle to the top you see, to enjoy the view of the large lake below, dotted with tiny sailboats. This deflects the pain, you understand. To face the agony, you should think of giving birth, and remember the joy that followed the effort.

Imagine! Suddenly, I hit a dip. Since what goes up must come down. I slip. Not right back to the beginning, but the peak is out of reach today, along with the marvellous view. Roll on next month.

Chapter 32
A Silver Shovel Smile

By Katherine M. Kean

Author Note: You can still add to the book even if you already have.

anyone lived in a pretty how town
the silver shovel version

Once there was a golden shovel.
Everyone was using it,
And news spread throughout the land—
“Oh, have ye heard of that golden shovel?”
The neighbors would ask.
“Why, no, we haven’t, and what is it you mean?”
“It’s the greatest thing,” they all said.
With that, the rage just grew, and everyone
Who was someone had one.
And there our story begins…
I. anyone
anyone decided to leave—
lived in great style for a long while
in cities where he could achieve
a better job, he did believe.  
pretty soon, he thought with a smile,  
howtown was a wonderful place
with views of farms and lovely isle.  
up high they thrived with quiet grace
so wondrous beauty did beguile.
II.  Customs

floating like a soft, wispy cloud,      
many towns’ custom was to ring                               
bells, making people very proud.    
down in the valley, folks avowed  
winter’s too harsh; they prefer spring.
they tried their best to till the land;     
sowed the seeds, and hoped that would bring
their cash efficiently in hand—  
to reap cha-ching, then have a fling!                     
III. finale
Karenina, my special friend,
A silver shovel smile I send.
Twas e.e.’s fault, cause at the end
His words, as such, I didst amend.


Author Notes -The first two verses of e.e. cumming's poem:

anyone lived in a pretty how town
(with up so floating many bells down)**
spring summer autumn winter
he sang his didn't he danced his did.

Women and men (both little and small)
cared for anyone not at all
they sowed their isn't they reaped their same
sun moon stars rain

**My poem follows the wording exactly up to, and including, "down." The remaining four lines made more sense in continuing the story with the words I chose instead of four seasons in a row!

-'Howtown is a hamlet in Cumbria, England, situated at a small harbor. The name Howtown means 'farmstead on the hill'. Howtown was founded by the How, or Howe, family." Wikipedia

photo credit David Pickersgill - Hairpins to Howtown -CC BY-SA 2.0 Wikipedia

-Karenina shared her Golden Shovel poem, "Desultory Drifting."

- The words are at the beginning because they didn't work out at the end. That's why it is a Silver Shovel! The background section is for information apart from the poem that follows.

-Meter was difficult to maintain because of the words of the original poet.

-I used 8 syllable lines with a rhyme scheme of aba, abc, bcb for the first two verses and dddd for the final verse.

-e.e. cummings had a tendency to use lower case letters. That is the reason for them here. This is one of my favorite poems.

-The most important thing about this poem is to enjoy it, hoping it brings a smile or two from Karenina.

-cha ching is a slang term for money.

-The origin of the Golden Shovel form is described well on Wikipedia.
-You can Google golden shovel poem to get specific definitions and examples.

Chapter 33
Cheerleader Karenina

By Katherine M. Kean

She writes with injured, helpless hands
As on the sidelines often stands
Invigorating words commands
So courage in our hearts expands

She helps the newbies on this site
We know when new, it’s hard to write
Among the strangers, wielding might
Of ratings sure to give us fright

But she knows whom to introduce
She’s swift our worries to difuse
She won’t abide those who abuse
With words that cut or are obtuse

And all the while she shows such care
When typing is no small affair
Because her hands need good repair
And so we keep her in our prayers!


Author Notes Notes:
We are thankful for Karenina who keeps cheering us on in our writing even though she still is awaiting surgery to repair her hands. (11/11)
Please keep praying for her!

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