Noon Hike at Halfmoon Bay

pelican soars over waves

Halfmoon Bay huge wave with surfer

Torrents of breeze chilled my face and hands

Dappled brown and white seagull landed

On to old tattered beach table top

Thanked him with mellow words as he stared

Gestured with my two empty hands that

Showed I brought no food for him today

Halfmoon Bay surfer

Sign warned of rip tides, strong currents, and

Dangerous sleeper waves that threatened

Hundreds of swells crushed and churned ocean

Thundered air like hundreds of drummers

Warning all of nature’s wild forces

Small birds skipped and darted with no fear

 Halfmoon Bay beach and surf

Black wet-suited surfer caught huge wave

Broke over him fifty yards from shore

Emerged with surfboard through water wall

Glided down like skier on ice slope

Sped toward shoreline and darted past me

Human seal left sand trail puffs in wake

porpoise 2

Pod of dolphin black fins broke surface

Thirty feet from wet sand that glistened

Found a bench for two a mile away

Hikers and bikers with dogs behind

Stretched their legs and moved into the wind

Clouds circled in wisps over our heads

Halfmoon Bay Map

Hiked back to our car and left for town

Stores for clothes, books, coffee shops, and more

Found a grill for a salad and meal

Smiling dwellers in eclectic town

Fifteen miles from massive traffic jams

Cement, cars, highways, and industry

Halfmoon Bay many surfers

McGrath Beach many least terns and brwon pelican

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Summer Fun at Dan and Joan’s Home 2014



 We all Swam in the Lavery sparkling pool

Grandsons 5 and 9 dove off the diving board

And caught countless balls that was very cool

Oldest played many a harmonic piano chord


They hit a whiffle ball into one of many trees

Caught a football in the sand with their hands

Slid on Sean and Christina’s grass on their knees

Saw Freese hit a homerun into the stands


Smashed tiny whiffle ball onto the roof

Threw tennis balls to Ginger and Barkley

Baby granddaughter learned a dog bark woof woof

Balls fell from the roof into our pool sparkly


Boys wore Angel Jersey’s we bought

Had fun bowling for two hours after lunch

They listened, played, swam and never fought

Gibbons swung on branches and hooted a bunch


Saw three movies and Dodger and Angel Baseball

“Planes”, “Tarzan”, and “We Bought a Zoo”

Two on Blue Ray and one at the Mall

Sean marinated and made a tasty barbeque


Bed Time stories from Bill Peet and others

Nine year-old played a Beethoven piece on the piano

Good story choices approved by all mothers

Aleksey and Dan’s guitar added to the flow


Lex and Des’s friends joined them for a lunch

They, their friends, and kids joined the throng

Sean’s BBQ’d gourmet sausages’ tasty crunch

Added zest to the delightful Saturday marathon


“All’s Well That Ends Well” by Shakespeare

Will Geer’s Topanga Canyon venue never a bore

Brought from the friendly crowd a loud cheer

Dan read “Mount Fuji” at Pasadena book store


Daughter and friend enjoyed swimming at Zuma Beach

Found the surf a challenge and Nature so sweet

Saw “Much Ado About Nothing” with many a fine speech

We hope everyone will join us again soon at our retreat


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The Audacity to BE Robin: A Tribute to Robin Williams By Cynthia Piano

A passionate poem in tribute to a man whose words and actions touched anyone who listened, watched, and felt what Robin Williams was about. Dan
August 19, 2014

Robin Williams lives on in our compassion, love and deep sensitivity to the feelings of the world. Releasing the pain and incorporating more self love may be the model for us all.
Robin Williams by Public Domain
The Audacity to BE Robin: A Tribute to Robin Williams
Robin Williams is HOME
In his own true consciousness
Committed suicide they said
Totally misunderstanding his role
Exposing the lack of compassion, love and understanding
Of the alien in all of us
Rich in depth and clarity of BEing SOUL
Capturing and wildly expressing
The TRUE soul
The OPEN soul
The ONENESS of soul
That links all of us to our REAL, INNATE way of Being
Overflowing with courage and creativity
Wandering into the depths of the rabbit hole
And burrowing further down to the core
Of the HEART
Of the divinity
Of the ONE
The true, wise, uncontained shaman of modern times
Allowing us all to vision and venture beyond
Our limits
Society's limits
Boundaries artificially shored by laughter and smile
He was the blue genie in the bottle
Granting wishes of freedom
To BE who you are
No matter what others think, say, and bully
We cracked up with him
In our minds, our hearts, and our souls
As he blew away the remnants of the misuse of power
The false masks of politician and private citizen alike
That no longer serve the whole
So substantially embodying the
Sacred masculine of strength, right use of power, and protection
And the divine feminine of compassion, nourishment of all, and mother love
Giving birth to inner and outer FREEDOM
Sounding the joy and passion of the animals
He could BECOME one
In an instant
With a body movement, a hand gesture, a facial expression
A sound
The trumpet of an elephant
The flight of a bird
The hiss of cat
And the warmth and pleasure of a canine
Catering to the awesome innocence of the child
That still resides in all of US
He cared too much for public and private pain
He recognized and empathically sensed the consequences of separation
The lonely state
Abandoned and bereft of love
Perhaps for himself
Perhaps for all
Only he knows
Only he can judge how it FEELS now
In my mind and heart
He was not the crazy one
We who do not integrate the feeling
And accept the whole of us
Copyright 2014 Cynthia G. Piano
Written 08/14/2014
Submitters Bio:
Founder, Oneness House ~ A Spiritual Spa; Writer, Visionary, co-creator of the New Earth, Spiritual Mentor, Inspirational and Transformational Healer/Teacher/Speaker. Awakening others to the beautiful, free, loving creators that we all are is her lifelong work. She feels that empowerment and freedom to create one's life, with harm to none, is the most important lesson of the Earth. Assisting and Consulting the individual or the business, with a work herstory in education, large and small corporate processes, sole-proprietorships, and self-development, Cynthia has experience with many environments, structures and personalities. Joy, fun, honest exposure, and dedication to simple truth are the methods used to propel people and businesses to success and happiness. She also deeply reveres the Earth, the Animals, the Plants, and all of nature. A sincere love for the planet and all with her was developed by extensive travel and study with native shaman, priests, kahuna, and other sacred teachers. Gently caring for and nurturing each other and the environment with total respect, creating peace and harmony with freedom, are her goals. Ease, comfort, enlightenment, growth and grace characterize the environment of Oneness House ~ A Spiritual Spa, the place of ahhhhhhhh and ah-ha! Relax into the human angels you are!

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Local Authors Book Signing at Crown Books 8/17/14 2-4 PM

On Sunday, August 17, from 2-4 PM, local authors, Daniel C. Lavery,(All the Difference-memoir) Richard Weekley,(Already There, poetry) and Douglas William Douglas,(The Black Lake, mystery)will discuss their most recent book, read an excerpt, and coffee, tea, water, cookies, will be provided at Crown Books, 6100 Topanga Canyon Blvd. #1340, Woodland Hills. Each author will discuss his work at fifteen minute intervals followed by fifteen minutes of a break for mingling with the crowd and book signing. This will be Douglas William Douglas's initial book signing for his startling mystery, The Black Lake.

New Flyer:

Meet the Authors


Douglas William Douglas

The Black Lake


Daniel C. Lavery

 All the Difference, memoir

 "From a Pawn to a Crusader for Justice"


Richard Weekley

Already There

Poems Not to Read


Sunday August 17th

2 PM – 4 PM


Crown Book Store

6100 Topanga Canyon Blvd.

Woodland Hills


Join us for a fun time of coffee and cookies as these popular writers read from and sign their books.


(The image is for our last event at the same venue. A new poster will be at the location.)OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERADan Reading poem at Onion Fall Poetry Festival 11102013


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On Sunday August 3, 2014, IWOSC (Independent Writers of Southern California)held a book reading called "IWOSC READS ITS OWN" at Vroman's Bookstore in Pasadena. Dan read the following excerpt from his memoir, All the Difference, about his ascent of Mt. Fuji as a teenager with his brother Chip and their amazing descent.



In the early summer of 1956, Chip and I joined the Yokosuka Naval Base teenage club to climb the highest mountain in Japan, Mount Fuji. On any clear day we could see Fujiyama ascending into the sky with snow-capped cone from my home in Kamakura and my high school at Yokohama. We wore baseball caps, warm clothing, and basketball shoes with sweat sox and brought a flashlight and canteen. The hike would last all night in freezing weather until we reached the summit at 12,388 feet.

Kamakura Beach with Fujisan in background

Our youth director warned us of altitude sickness, which caused headaches, nausea, and dizziness for some climbers. We used a six feet long, hexagonal Fuji stick for assistance during the climb. Along the climb for a price in yen at each station, you could have a station stamp branded onto your stick as a sign of your achievement. Each of the ten stations along the way had resting huts that allowed climbers to pay for any time to sleep, rest, or eat meals. Five or more of these huts existed at the fifth station. A few of them served complimentary hot green tea from large kettles.

Enoshima with Fujiyama behind

Some people took a bus up to the fifth station, but Chip and I wanted to climb from the bottom to have our Fuji stick prove we had completed the hike from the base. We slept briefly in blankets near a hibachi heated with burning coals at one of the last stations, but awoke before three in the morning on a mission to reach the top first. With sunrise only an hour and a half away, we gathered our gear and moved on rapidly.

Japanese climbers said gambatte to each other meaning, “Hang in there,” to encourage their group during the climb. The trail steepened after the eighth station, making the hike far more difficult as altitude increased. Before sunrise we reached the red Shinto Torii marking the apex of Fujisan. We gathered with other climbers to look into the huge crater with a depth of six hundred feet and circumference of 2.2 miles. Rugged rocks and debris covered the bottom of the depression created by years of erosion from wind, rain, snow, and time, and dotted the dips and crags around the slope. Coldness pierced our faces, and froze us, as the Japanese countryside spread out to the Pacific Ocean. The wind howled and blew torrents at us.sunrise over Fuji with Torii

Goraiko, sunrise, slowly began. The sky brightened about a half hour before the sun emerged from a gray cloud bank surrounding Fuji. Gradually an intense, yellowish-orange radiance spread around the rising sun. The sky displayed a yellowish-orange hue slightly above. Further up the orange melted into a pinkish-orange. A brilliant scarlet pushed upwards to a scarlet purple beyond. Immediately overhead a deep dark blue tone gave way to a lighter shade. The puffy clouds resembled ducks, dragons, and sheep with their under bellies spray-painted raspberry, and their bodies scarlet-grey. Their wispy legs trailed down disappearing into the dense blue.

The sun majestically emerged, sending a streak of light throughout the panorama like splashing clear water on a painting. No wonder my grandmother Ruthie found sunrises the most magnificent of nature’s gifts. I often took my wife and children to view the splendor of dawn’s early light because of her influence.

Chip and I walked the perimeter to find the best spot for our descent. Beginning at the seventh station running on the flexible lava, known as scree, reminded me of playing on a trampoline. A few other football players joined us as we scrambled, tumbled, and ran down the mountain in record time. We shouted for joy as we bounced up and down on the give and take of the surface, astounded by its elasticity. I tucked my head into my chest, rolled for twenty feet, and tumbled repeatedly until my body rested on the strange surface. Each piece of lava could hurt if you fell awkwardly on it and made me imagine I was on the moon.


We had traversed the volcanic sand slope in two hours!The climb up Fuji had taken us ten, which explains why exhaustion struck us so often during the punishing ascent. My eyes gazed back up the immense volcano. I hadn’t conquered that steep magnificent volcano, but had just become acquainted with Fujisan.

Mount Fuji reflected on mirror lake

Mount Fuji reflected on mirror lake

Majestic Summit


Fujiyama’s noble essence

soaring in sky

reflected on rippling lake


Not merely earth heaped heavenward


Drizzle dimmed sunrise

the twilight shroud

gathering darkness beyond

Drifting from all bearings

traveling its slope

foliage to

untamed snowcap

  Dan Reading poem at Onion Fall Poetry Festival 11102013

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