Nature Speaks of Love and Sorrow: New Reviews

I’m sharing a few more reviews today of #1 Amazon New Release Nature Speaks of Love and Sorrow. I am humbled and honored by the beautiful words contained in all of the reviews my debut poetry book has received over the past two weeks. Such an amazing experience, all of this has been.

Here are the newest reviews.

Suzette Benjamin, of Suzette B’s Blog

5.0 out of 5 stars

 A dance in poetic song!

Jeff Flesch’s well-presented poetic ensemble Nature Speaks, vibrates human emotion with nature as its membrane.
It draws the reader into the connectedness between feelings and experiences in/with/among who we are and are becoming.
Jeff Flesch’s talented gaze at human brokenness and the joy seeping
through love and life, lifts the reader through nature’s lens unto fervent hope.
One of my many favorites from this adept collection resonates with this aspect of nature’s parabolic lens; a lens that reveals what lies in one’s heart, bubbling up ever so gently, through a walk among the trees.
I found the following a summative glimpse into the poet’s perspective, which I think the reader will enjoy. That nature is a reminder of the primal nature to which all life belongs. It is that place of respite from the shackles of the everyday grind.
Therefore the line in “Self Bloom” which reads: “I dance to the tune of the moon learning more about nature,” does that for me. What imagery and solace abounds in that swath of poetry!
The reader will not be disappointed (O thomk) with “Nature Speaks of Love and Sorrow: Poems by Jeff Flesch” either as a companion at the end of a day, or as an early morning meditation song.
Overall, I relished reading these poems as a “dance” to the tune of nature’s heart song wrapped in hugs.

Cassa Bassa, of Flicker of Thoughts

4.0 out of 5 stars

 Nature gives us space to process our feelings and emotions.

The writer is connected to nature, the everyday wonders we often ignore. It provides a safe place to process at times complex emotions. It’s healing to read this collection of poems.

Elisa Bobbiesi, of @wildolivewrites

5.0 out of 5 stars

A restorative and uplifting collection

This enchanting collection of poems is filled with depth and heart. There is a softness, a hopefulness to his writing, even when expressing painful emotions. Intricate textures of nature are woven throughout, like meditations, reminding us to connect to and fully appreciate the world around us.

Kym Gordon Moore, of From Behind the Pen

5.0 out of 5 stars

 A Dance with Nature

Jeff’s collection of poetry reminds me of looking at nature and life through the lens of a child. The gifts of nature are ours to reflect on the majesty of life, caretaking, and living. His poems meander through the realms of imagination, creativity, and appreciation for the blessed gifts Mother Nature offers us. This book is like dedicating a love story to the amazing facets of the gems that nature beholds. You can find a piece of yourself throughout the morsels of stanzas offered in this collection.

Selma in Japan, of Selma

5.0 out of 5 stars

 Poetry that moves you– makes you feel something like an overflow

In reading Nature Speaks of Love and Sorrow by Author Jeff Flesch, at times, I moved like the wind susurrating to a tree; at others, my soul overflowed and crashed like a wave— my heart pulsed excitedly and smiled. Could be the nature theme, could be the words. 
The words, yes, the words! 
The author’s words recalibrate heart and soul, and if I had to choose just one poem to encapsulate what I mean, it would be “The Ocean’s Rocks.” I love the ending line, “love forms the center of our poetry.” 
There is much sorrow in Nature Speaks of Love and Sorrow by Author Jeff Flesch, but the author finds a way of stirring us out of that dark place and into the love that abides in nature. Kudos! As we all know, love is the thing that makes the journey whole and worth it.
The poems are short, but each packs a beautiful cadence in the brevity and simplicity of the author’s vocabulary. And the freedom in the lineation of free verse poetry added to its charm— giving me time to visualize. This ‘permission to pause’ endeared me to this poet’s crisp style. 
Each poem ends in a blissful place which translates to each ending putting me in a better place. 
So glad I purchased the printed format. Touching it transports me to a good place. 
In closing, it was hard to read this lovely poetry collection and not nod in agreement: the world would be a better place if we could all see through Author Jeff Flesch’s eyes. I cannot wait to read more by this author. 
5-star. I highly recommend it—Selma in Japan.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart, Suzette, Cassa, Elisa, Kym, and Selma. Your reviews touched my heart, and I am grateful to each of you.

Submissions are open for the Nature Speaks of Love and Sorrow: 30 Poems in 30 Days Collaboration, and will remain open until September 23. The submission details are located here.

#1-amazon-new-release, #poetry, #book, #life, #love, #love-and-sorrow, #nature, #naturespeaks, #poem, #publication, #reviews

Nature Speaks of Love and Sorrow: New Reviews, and 30 Poems in 30 Days Begins on September 24

I am continuously humbled by the generosity and kindness of our loving community. I recently read two new reviews of #1 Amazon New Release Nature Speaks of Love and Sorrow, and they both touched my heart.

Here are the two newest reviews.

New Reviews

Sadje, of Keep it Alive

Nature speaks of love and sorrow is the debut poetry book of Jeff Flesch, but I’m sure there will be many more!
Jeff is known for his beautiful poetry and is quite active on his blog on WordPress. Jeff is a kind, considerate and caring person whose poetry also mirrors his personality.
The poems are both profound and playful. They take you in and make you think and then some would also amuse and entertain you. A beautiful book which you will read again and again.
This book is available in Kindle and paperback as well. Do pick u your copy today.

Carol Anne, of Therapy Bits

I just bought and read this powerful poetry book by Jeff Flesch!
Jeff has done an amazing job with his new book! I loved the feel of this book!
Every word was relatable and spoke to my heart!
If your looking for a good poetry book, pick up this book! You won’t be disappointed!
The poems are all so heartfelt!
Its available on amazon in paperback and on kindle.
Thanks for creating this wonderful book Jeff! I look forward to reading more from you!

Such lovely words, and wonderful people. Thank you from the bottom of my heart, Sadje, and Carol Anne. I am deeply touched by your beautiful reviews.

30 Poems in 30 Days

We are one week and one day away from the Nature Speaks of Love and Sorrow: 30 Poems in 30 Days Collaboration beginning. The poems that have come in are diverse, and absolutely beautiful. I cannot wait to share them with you!

If you are still interested in submitting, please do. The submission details are located here.

Have a wonderful weekend!

#poetry, #30-poems-in-30-days, #book, #collaboration, #nature, #nature-speaks-of-love-and-sorrow, #poem, #poetry-reviews, #publication, #reviews

Nature Speaks of Love and Sorrow: A Review, by Jaya Avendel

I am honored to share another advanced review with you, of Nature Speaks of Love and Sorrow, by Jaya Avendel, of Nin Chronicles.

I met Jaya last summer sometime, and have been an avid reader ever since. Jaya uses language in ways that invite the reader to continuously ponder meaning, and the ways in which we construct the realities we hold about life. The poetry and prose are stunning.

I was honored when Jaya agreed to complete an advanced review of Nature Speaks of Love and Sorrow.

Here are a few excerpts from Jaya’s stunning review.

The poetry of Jeff is undulating and emotional. It explores love and loss and remembrance. It explores the nature of memory and the sweetness of life. Every word is intentional and every line sinks deep into the heart as the imagery of each poem takes hold and bursts into being.

From the moment I started reading this book, I was reminded of a quote by Cicero.

“If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.” ~ Cicero

If you have Nature Speaks of Love and Sorrow, you will have both a library and nature at your fingertips. You will find the flora and fauna of nature delicate and raw in this book, and the library of written emotions and experiences poignant and healing.

I recommend Nature Speaks of Love and Sorrow to any lover of nature and all lovers of poetry. It is a powerful and vivid collection you will enjoy poem by poem again and again.

I would be honored if you would go here, and read the rest of Jaya’s review of Nature Speaks of Love and Sorrow. Thank you! 

I would like to thank Jaya from the bottom of my heart for completing this gorgeous review.

#poetry, #book, #healing, #heart, #jaya-avendel, #life, #loss, #love, #nature, #nature-speaks-of-love-and-sorrow, #poem, #publication, #review

The 4 Catalysts: Book 1, Part 2, Chapter 1

Photo by Jen Theodore on Unsplash

Brave – ready to face and endure danger or pain; showing courage.

Strength – the quality or state of being physically strong.

Intellect – the faculty of reasoning and understanding objectively, especially with regard to abstract or academic matters

Part 2


“You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem and smarter than you think.” -Christopher Robin, Winnie the Pooh


Though the four had lived in a world full of change, they did not feel it, nor did they think much about it. Their lives had been, up to this point, rather monotonous.

Not like the days when their ancestors lived in the four corners. Those days were full of change even the catalysts felt. For a catalyst to actually feel change, it must be on a global scale.

What the four didn’t know, couldn’t know, was that the seeds of change, they, were about to embark on a journey for the ages. One that would have even concerned their ancestors.

The West

Unlike the East, the West was hot. Very hot, and dry, not wet and humid like the East. No, the West was a dry, arid, desert landscape, with rolling sand dunes, and distant mountains, which surrounded the Valley of the Sun.

Photo by Tanya Nevidoma on Unsplash

It was in this Valley that Lorel, and the People of the Sun lived; and, where the Castle of Sand was located. Like Sheldon, Lorel was the Mage of the East, and as such, fulfilled their obligation to the People of the Sun.

Unlike Sheldon, Lorel preferred to live alone. No Quara running after, nor house servants picking up after them. Just Lorel. Well, Lorel, and Hok, Lorel’s falcon, who, like Lorel, had lived in the Castle of Sand for generations. In fact, Hok’s ancestors had served Lorel’s ancestors for as long as anyone could remember.

Lorel was in their study at the top of the Castle, when Hok flew in and perched themselves just over Lorel’s shoulder.

“What’s the matter, Hok?”

It was just then that Lorel sensed it, them. Lorel quickly made their way to the window overlooking the vast dunes to the East. Sure enough, five riders were making their way to the Castle.

Surrounding the Castle were hamlets, many of them. The hamlets were where the People of the Sun lived. Lived, and thrived. Even though the People of the Sun didn’t take care of Lorel and the Castle proper, they took care of all of the surrounding landscape and hamlets.

Photo by fereydoun kia fereydoun kia on Un

And, though no one took care of Lorel and the Castle, there was one in particular, one tribesperson that looked in on Lorel regularly. Talom was their name, and their dedication to Lorel was complete.

Talom was a senior advisor among the People of the Sun, and was known for their great intellectual prowess. Even Lorel considered Talom one of the smartest people they had ever met.

As the riders approached the hamlets, Talom readied themselves for conversation.

The first rider was young. Younger than Talom expected. The rider gave off waves of arrogance, not surprising Talom in the least. The other four riders stayed back, while the youngster dismounted, and approached Talom on foot.

The hamlet’s inhabitants spilled out into the narrow streets that connected the small homes constructed of sand, sticks, and brush. Children and teenagers raced up to stand behind Talom, while their parents yelled at them to stay back.

The young man approached, and said “Who are you, old man? We’re seeking Lorel, Mage of the East. We’re not interested in talking to the likes of you. Simply point the way, and we’ll pass in peace.”

Talom snickered inwardly. The arrogance of such a boy to suppose he could simply ride up to the Castle of Sand, and speak with Lorel. Funny. Absurd. Talom gathered himself, breathing slowly, patiently, and just as the boy was about to speak…

“Who am I? Why, who are you, young master? We are the People of the Sun. This is our hamlet, which lies in the shade of the Castle of Sand.”

The young horse rider paused, grinned, then stepped back, looked over his shoulder, and said, “Seems like we have an issue here. This old one will not let us pass. What should we do boys?”

While the young horse rider was speaking to his fellow riders, Talom could sense something. Yes, it was Lorel communicating with them through the fire pit just to Talom’s right. Fire was the Mage’s Art, and they could do just about anything with it, including using it to communicate.

“Talom, what’s going on? Why is this boy here with four other men, and those infernal horses? What do they want?”

Talom still breathing slowly and patiently, answered back, “Master, I don’t like these horse riders, there’s something wrong with them. Not sure what it is, but something is amiss.”

Just then the boy advanced toward Talom at an amazing speed, drawing a throwing knife as he did so, and as he was about to throw, a curtain of fire erupted between the rider and Talom. The horse rider almost ran right into it, yet stopped just in time.

Photo by Mohamed Nohassi on Unsplash

The boy stumbled back, tripped, and tumbled to the desert floor. Now scrambling back towards his horse and the other rides. And, doing so quickly.

As the boy was retreating, Lorel came walking down the narrow hamlet streets towards the wall of fire. As Lorel passed the gathered children, they brushed their heads and shook hands of parents and caretakers, young and old alike.

Lorel then made their way toward Talom, standing right beside them. In that same instance, Lorel withdrew the wall of fire. Hok was sitting just over Lorel’s left shoulder, on the top of one of the hamlets, taking in their Master’s poise under pressure.

“What do you want? You don’t belong here, and are not sanctioned to be away from the Center. The Center is where you live, and where you are to stay. The far reaches of the West is no place for you. Now go.”

The boy stood up, brushed himself off, and called to one of the other men to bring him the pack.

Pack, what pack, Talom thought. Talom didn’t like this at all.

One of the older men brought the pack over, handed it to the boy, then made his way back to his horse.

The boy said, “We were tasked with delivering this to you. It was not an easy journey. Several died. We are what remains of the dispatch. This is for you.”

Lorel took the pack, opened it, and upon seeing the contents, stumbled backwards, almost falling over.

What in the world was the East Mage’s Book of Change doing with these men, and that infernal boy? What was it doing in the West, about as far away as you could get from the distant East? And, oh no, what about Sheldon?

“Oh, Talom, we have an issue.”

#book, #change, #creatingchange, #fantasy, #fiction, #fictionbook, #fictionfantasy, #fictionscifi, #fictionscififantasy, #fictionwriting, #mage, #scifi, #scififantasy, #the4catalysts, #the4mages, #writing

The 4 Catalysts: Part 1, Book 1, Chapter 2

Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

Commitment – the state or quality of being dedicated to a cause, activity, etc.

Patronage – the support given by a patron.

Dedication – the quality of being dedicated or committed to a task or purpose.


“It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.” -Charles Darwin

Quara’s commitment was clear from a very young age. Take care of Master Sheldon, that’s it, period. Sheldon and Quara had a strong relationship, built on trust and mutual respect, over time. Many envied Quara’s post, Wiki believing that they should rise higher in the Caste system, and take on more responsibilities. Yet that’s not how service worked.

Service was handed out by the tribal elders at birth. As a child grew, they were given instruction over three areas – general education, their service training, and, understanding their patrons Art. And, as Quara was the one selected to serve Master Sheldon, their training in the Art was that more extensive.

Quara moved down the spiral staircase towards Sheldon’s rooms, cautious to be ever so quiet. Cautious and quiet as this was Sheldon’s meditation time, not to be disturbed under any circumstances. On their way down they noticed a shadow playing on the outside of Sheldon’s main room. Light was flickering from inside the room, displayed by the fire in the hearth.

Photo by Zoran Kokanovic on Unsplash

As the shadow moved back and forth, Quara froze in their place on the stairs. Waiting. Breathing slowly. Moving now again, slowly like their breath, one step at a time towards the Master’s room.

One step, two, three, and suddenly the Master burst through the room, rushing past Quara and up the stairs to the main hall. Quara stumbled back against the wall, sank down, and sat. Waiting. Breathing slowly.

Sheldon dashed through the main hall and into the library. Sheldon’s library was extensive, generationally handed down. There were regular books, tomes, articles, and every imaginable script on and in the history of the world.

Photo by Jez Timms on Unsplash

Sheldon moved quickly. Rifling through the books, grabbing a few, then to the tomes, flipping, blowing off dust, then to the articles and manuscripts doing the same, selecting the ones needed.

They moved all the items gathered to their desk, sprawling out the papers in an array to get the best look. Sheldon lit a couple more candles as the day was dank and dark, as it was often in the East at this time of year, well, at most times of year.

Meanwhile, Quara, catching their breath, hurried up the stairs, through the main hall, and into the library after their Master.

Quara burst into the library and said “Master, what is this all about? You nearly knocked me down the staircase. You gave me an awful fright!” Sheldon did not respond, and continued to study the papers, and books strewn out all over the desktop. Concentrating. Breathing, slowly.

“It’s not hear, I cannot find it, Quara!”

Quara, of course, had no idea what Sheldon was talking about, so probed, “Master, I don’t know what you are talking about. You are supposed to be in meditative practice. I am confused.”

Sheldon continued to search through the papers, combing books, tossing them aside.

“I know it’s here, Quara. It has to be.

Quara stumped, decided to take a different approach. “Master, why don’t you sit down for a moment, and breathe. You know that it will come to you then.”

Sheldon, not fully hearing Quara, yet sensing reasonableness in the docile way Quara was approaching them, sat down on the floor, closed their eyes, and breathed. Slowly. In, and out. In, and out.

Photo by Chantal Garnier on Unsplash

Quara stooped down, sat on the floor across from their Master, and did the same. Concentrating. Breathing, slowly.

5 minutes, turned into, 10, which turned into an hour.

Sheldon opened their eyes, looked at the strewn papers and books littered across the library floor, looked over at Quara, who was still eyes shut breathing, and sighed.

“It’s no use, Quara, I cannot remember where it is. All these years, the Book of Change has been in this library, and now, it is gone. Poof. Gone. I don’t understand it. Cannot understand it.”

Quara slowly opened their eyes, looked at their Master, and also sighed. “Master, I know not where the Book of Change is. Surely it is here. It must be. Where else could it be?”

Sheldon sighed again. Rose to their knees, stood up, and walked over to Quara, lending them a hand, pulling them up.

“Oh, Quara, I am upset, and concerned. That the Book is not here is unsettling, and I fear, not the most unsettling thing that has occurred today.”

Quara looked at their Master quizzically, “Master?”

“In my meditation today, the light brought me a Vision, one that I dare not say overmuch about. Yet know that, though I do not feel change as others do, there are great changes coming, Quara. Changes that will affect the entire world. Nothing will be the same. Nothing is the same.”

Photo by NASA on Unsplash

Quara started to shake. When the Master had a vision, which did not happen often, something was definitely wrong with the world. “Master, you are frightening me, and I do not understand your meaning.”

“No matter, Quara. It is time. Time to visit the West, and see Lorel.”

Now Quara was more than concerned. Was frightened. “Master, you can’t really mean that. You’ve never travelled to the East. In all the years you have been Master of Castalistidom, you’ve never traveled to the East. Not ever. Oh, Master, you are truly frightening me.”

Sheldon began picking up the papers and books from the floor, organizing them on the desk. They stopped, hands braced on the desk table, sighed, head hanging.

“Of course, you’re right, Quara, and yet, it is my duty to do so. There are only 4 Books of Change on the entire planet. One in the West, South, North, and, well, one that used to be here in the East, yet is no more. We must travel to Lorel. We have no choice.”

Quara, still confused, looked their Master in the eye, chin tucked in, back straight and said, “Very well, Master. I will inform the staff, and get your affairs in order. When do we leave.”

Sheldon smiled, maybe grinned.

“Why, Quara, we are leaving right now.”

Quara, head hanging a bit now, sighed again, picked up his head, and said,

“Very well, Master. Then I’d better get busy!”

#book, #catalysts, #fantasy, #fantasyfiction, #fiction, #novel, #novella, #reading, #scifi, #scififantasy, #scififantasyfiction, #scififiction, #the4catalysts, #writing