Dada, Peas (Poem by Kephra Rubin)

dadapeas

Dada, Peas…
By Kephra Rubin

Dada…
Her eyes well
They beg
Rain falls from them

Dada…
She reaches out
She screams
It sounds like: Dada, peas…

Peas don’t go
Dada peas stay
What can I do?
Other than go away?

A society lead astray
A nation of absence
A home of struggle
Ends meeting under strain

Maybe,
Maybe some day
Break free from this thing
And play together

Maybe when I’m old and gray

Dada, peas…
Who cares about things?
What about us?
Aren’t I part of your dream?

Reach for me,

Dada, peas…

By Kephra Rubin
Copyright Kephra Rubin 2016

kephrarubin.wordpress.com

I post as often as I can, but due to a slight case of dyslexia sometimes it is difficult to post quickly. I have to rewrite my work many times for it to be clear and concise. Subscribe and you’ll always know when I have something new up. Thanks in advance.

Coming Soon: Walk Through the Valley Novel Series

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The Book’s For You

The book’s for you, well, it’s for me too. It can’t get to you if it isn’t for me first, right? I think that’s essentially what I’m posting about today. Little updates combined into one post that lets you know how I’ve been, what I’ve been up to, and what you mean to me as a reader.

Two new books are on their way, a bunch of poems and some interesting thoughts and articles as well. I have been so focused on creating that I only have small updates like “still creating!” to post so I don’t see much point in posting that on here.

This seems to be what happens with me from time to time. Instead of finishing one piece, then another, ten get done all at once. So what’s been new? Let’s clump it all together now.

I’m happy to share with you that we now have a dedicated artist for the novels, and an editor!

Finding our editor was very difficult and expensive, I wasted money on so many people that simply took advantage of my dyslexia. I would show their work to friends and everyone would say it was good. Then, after I paid for the service… the same people would start pointing out droves of errors. Yeah!

I feel very insecure at times, but it also feels very triumphant when I keep on going. Sometimes I get frustrated. I wouldn’t call what I deal with severe, plenty of people are more severely dyslexic than I am. Regardless, it’s what I’m dealing with, and so it’s a big deal to me, right? Ha!

I read every day to strengthen my skills and make me a better writer. Sometimes I’ll get this big happy face because I read 30 pages in a day and it’s sad how many people almost get angry and tell me how they read 100 before bed. The other day I read 80 and still the eyes roll. I want to say “When was the last time you more than doubled your ability?”

Actually… sometimes I do say that. Sometimes I’m more skilled at shutting people down than I am at building myself up, too. I don’t like that. I can understand it, of course. A child does whatever they have to do to block out the day-in, day-out tsunami of negativity and spirit breaking that is every day life. What about an adult, though? When does the adult stop being the kid?

I’m no angel, but I do believe I’m working very hard on being a better person. I think part of being a better person is breaking free from the need of others. To not need their approval, to not need anything from them, but to always be willing to share with everyone. The biggest part of sharing, the hardest part, is letting others share with you. At least that’s my problem.

Great big walls surrounding a heart I don’t even understand.

Lately I’ve wondered if that’s the “grand lesson” in life, that life isn’t for anyone but you. When I make my life about others I’m never happy. I know that’s counter to what most people say.

My greed only exists because I allowed people to take too much in the past. My fear exists because I know in many ways I won’t do to others what they did to me and so I don’t know how to defend myself against them. My anger comes from that frustration. So I lash out trying to scare them as much as they scare me. So much of who I am is simply a response to the world, and not an expression of myself

I don’t like that, either.

Still, look at all our triumphs so far. Sure, Walk Through the Valley: The Hill Tribe is getting re-edited due to the last five editors being scam artists. Walk Through the Valley:  Calm Waters, my second novel, will probably be truly complete before my first novel… but whatever. It still counts as a completed novel.

We’re officially a novelist guys!

I think that’s why I’m writing, why I’m doing what’s hard, because those inner walls got built up so big I can’t see over them anymore. My heart, my soul or whatever you want to call that inner spark that is “who we are” is a complete mystery to me. Writing is like meditation. I can take a character who “isn’t me” and work them through my real life problems and see what it feels like. I’m writing to see what I recognize. When you read, you’re joining me on that journey and who knows, maybe finding a little of yourself as well.

I’m not the best at marketing, or business, I have about 200 followers if you add up social media and blogs. Yet, I get a lot of interaction from you all. I’ve gotten notes from people in jail telling me I’m the reason they try to rehabilitate. Others telling me something I said is why they stopped being an escort/prostitute. To lighter things, like people simply saying it’s nice to not feel alone, or “dude that fight scene was freakin’ awesome!” and other happy notes. I wish I got as much encouragement from friends and family as I do from you, but to keep it a more positive thought, I’m just glad to be getting encouragement.

I write for myself, but I think in a lot of ways we’re all writing for each other, too. The difference is we start with ourselves, and then we find each other because we’ve genuinely expressed ourselves. I feel like this is different from becoming who you think people will like. Granted, people who push to be liked tend to get liked and so they have hundreds of thousands of followers, but I think that’s good, too. I think marketing and social media and all that stuff is really hard and anyone who can be good at it is expressing themselves in a way. I’m going to be working on improving that part of this journey as well.

Who knows who we’ll connect with when reach out and try to connect? Should be fun to find out.

That’s something I learned about myself relatively recently as well, what a fragile thing I am in terms of connection. Hey, that’s not very macho! I know, right? Losing my man card here. For a long time I didn’t believe in love. Then I fell in love, then I believed in love, then I lost love.

She did fine, it did not go well for me. I think heartbreak in childhood is important, it teaches you how to deal with it. I meet a lot of women that have this like “bitter ex girlfriend” personality. I don’t date them, but I meet them. Eek! Yet I look at so many with envy because they at least are prepared in some way for future heartbreak. I got hit by a freight train when it happened. Honestly, there wasn’t a part of me that had any doubt about happily ever after and when it ended, I realized I had seen all the signs, I just assumed we would try to work it out. Nope, it was like-on to the next one. In the end, what was so awe inspiring, was like trying on a sweater or something for her. She had fallen in love before.

I understand maybe it’s possible I still don’t know what love is and that was never really love. So let’s at least call it the most powerful experience of the heart I’ve had to date. Sure, we got back together and broke up like 80 times after that. So I’m sure it wasn’t easy for her, either. It’s been a while now and in a lot of ways I still feel like I’m picking up the pieces. Perhaps if I had had more experiences beforehand I would have been ready. Then again, perhaps I wouldn’t have been so open to it.

I have survived a lot, and most of my childhood was only about surviving. I didn’t really have a chance to fall in love until I was already a grown man. We broke up, and a long string of bad decisions followed. I didn’t fall into drugs or alcohol, but searched for distractions in other women.  I guess I can’t call them all bad decisions, but certainly conflicting ones.

I’m a father now, by the way.

What????

I know, that’s a big one to just insert in there so casually. I guess with the life I’ve lived I worry about stalkers and creeps somehow finding her. Mainly because I’ve had stalkers and they are pretty crafty at finding me.

It’s scary being a father. I taught her to crawl, to walk, and now she’s learning to run… okay, lightly jog, but she’s getting there! I know I can’t protect her from everything, and it’s not easy to communicate to her how to protect herself. She got so mad at me the other day because I wouldn’t let her eat a dirty rock. Not that a clean rock would have been much better…

Chip off the old block, she already knows everything, I’m just along for the ride. Ha, ha, jokes on me. I do my best to act out what could happen if she makes a mistake and then basically she decides if the risk is worth the reward. Often she listens, the problem is when she experiments and nothing bad happens.

I pretended to eat the rock, and then pretended to choke. She looked at me, looked at the rock… and shoved it in her mouth. She figured she was skilled enough now that she wouldn’t choke. She didn’t choke on the rock, but I won that battle because she couldn’t get the dirt out of her mouth. So I kept making “blahg” noises to show that it was gross and cleaned her mouth out with cotton swabs. Hopefully that’s the end of dirt eating. Time will tell.

Financially we hit a couple of snags, all of our projects will still get completed. I don’t know if there’s enough of us for a kickstarter to go fully funded, but it’s worth a shot since even if it doesn’t it may bring in more readers. More readers equals more feedback equals better story telling! Everything will get done either way, but it may take a little longer than I originally thought.

Remember to like me on facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/walkthroughthevalleynovels/

Pretty much everyone who follows my blog is subscribed to it because they know I struggle with dyslexia and new content sometimes takes time. It lets them know via email when I post something so they can devour it right away! I have a bunch of little updates that I want you to know about, but I feel bad filling your email with stuff like that.

So like my facebook and follow it and when I have something like “Edits are going great, cover design is on tack!” You can see it there and know I’m doing okay, without getting more email crammed into your inbox.

I know I need to set up twitter as well. I need someone to help me with that I don’t really understand how to use it. I’ll let you know when it’s ready.

So, that’s pretty much what I wanted to accomplish today. Say hello, catch up, let you know things haven’t fallen off I’ve just gotten so focused on the novels and writing that I didn’t have much dramatic to post here. Little updates are on facebook, and you’ll see there’s a bunch. At some point soon I’ll link twitter.

So, how have you been? What’s new?

-Kephra

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Help Poughkeepsie Author Kephra Rubin choose the cover to his next book.

Vote for my next book's cover.

Vote for my next book’s cover.

A poll is up, by voting you’ll get to choose which cover will be used for my next novel “Walk Through the Valley: Calm Waters”

Like my facebook page and get entered for a chance to win 1 of 10 free copies of the new novel that will feature a hand made calligraphy dedication with your name in it!

The Poll

https://epoll.me/v/AChhrZs5KKA

Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/walkthroughthevalleynovels

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I Saved a Life Today, by Kephra Rubin

Save a Life Today, Every Day

Saving a Life Isn’t Limited to Others

I saved a life today

If there was nothing I could do
Then why are we training all the time?
Can you train me to stop replaying
A memory of light leaving your eyes?

Are you cold where you have gone?
Are you dark and on your own?
Do you need me there by your side
To join you there on one last ride?

You see someone has to suffer
Someone’s got to feel the pain
Someone’s got to be there for you
So I’ll join you on this day

I feel steel cold pressed against me
I prepare to write my ending
As I’m about to take it all
From the dark I hear your voice call

It’s telling me to honor you
To save the greatest life I can
That this life is my very own
It hurts to say I understand

That the battle will never end
Every day I will have to fight
But every day I save myself
Is a day I save another life

So for you I saved a life today

Written by Kephra Rubin
copyright 2015 kephra rubin

On this memorial day 2015, I chose to remember those who fell after the battle had already ended. What I’ve learned from interviews I’ve done for my writing, it’s that anyone who has been there, in the thick of battle, or deep in a fire, or holding a patient’s life in their hands, there’s no telling how close anyone is to such a choice. To ignore it or write it off as an act of cowardice is blindness. To those taken after the battle ended, you are not forgotten, either.

Soldiers aren’t alone.

According to FBHA 46 Firefighters committed suicide since the start of this year
In recent years more soldiers have taken their own lives than were lost to combat
Approximately 125 police officers will fall by their own hand each year
It was difficult to find statistics for EMS but in a six month period in 2014 I found a total of 23 articles detailing suicides.

These numbers are difficult to confirm. Aside from the difficulty in compiling, often these statistics only include deaths while on the job and often do not include those of volunteer emergency services.

During research I found many articles detailing how many members of these services will not come forward about their pain because they fear being removed from the job as a result. For anyone suffering that does not feel comfortable using traditional channels to seek help, feel free to contact me to talk, completely anonymous. I stay in touch with a few veterans I interviewed for a novel I wrote and they all say that just talking about it helped greatly. Even if all you do is create a throwaway email account, write me a long letter and then move on, getting it out helps.

When you save yourself, you save a life.

Thanks for reading.

kephrarubin.wordpress.com

I post as often as I can, but due to a slight case of dyslexia sometimes it is difficult to post quickly. I have to rewrite my work many times for it to be clear and concise. Subscribe and you’ll always know when I have something new up. Thanks in advance.

Coming Soon: Walk Through the Valley Novel Series featuring stories inspired by interviews with combat veterans from Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan and Korea. Subscribe for the update when the novels release.

Next Poem: The Turmoil Between

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Watch Something Inspirational Daily

I’m finishing up my second novel which has taken up some of my time, but I came across this video and it made me decide that I want to do something inspirational for myself every day. Maybe it will have the same results for you. Walk Through the Valley: The Hill Tribe cane be viewed on amazon. Walk Through the Valley: Calm Waters coming soon. Third book is being researched and sketched out right now.

Thanks for reading, enjoy.

Kephra

kephrarubin.wordpress.com

I post as often as I can, but due to a slight case of dyslexia sometimes it is difficult to post quickly. I have to rewrite my work many times for it to be clear and concise. Subscribe and you’ll always know when I have something new up. Thanks in advance.

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American Sniper Movie Review

American Sniper Movie Review by Kephra Rubin

American Sniper Movie Review by Kephra Rubin

American Sniper

Rating: Pretty Damn Good

Honestly, if you look at this movie without knowing that it’s based on a real American’s life, the movie isn’t actually that amazing. That’s why it got a Pretty Damn Good rating, instead of a Rocked rating. The story lacks focus, and its message isn’t delivered clearly.

It’s almost as if it couldn’t decide if it was trying to be Black Hawk Down or Jacknife (somewhat lesser known movie that deals specifically with soldiers struggling to integrate back into everyday life) and kept flip flopping between the two so much that at the end the revelations made by the main character seem anticlimactic.

The reason I’m pointing all this out now is I think that if you go into this movie not expecting the greatest telling of a soldier’s struggle to have ever been filmed, you won’t be disappointed. In the end, it is a very good movie, but hype can sometimes lead to disappointment, so my hope is beating it up a little will help everyone to give the movie a fair chance not anticipating perfection.

Do not expect another “Lone Survivor” with this one. American Sniper is almost entirely a drama with bits of war sprinkled in, as opposed to a war movie with dramatic moments in it. It’s almost as if the war time scenes are there simply to add tension and make the scenes of home life seem almost alien and help you to understand why a soldier can feel a bit uncomfortable in a casual “civilian” setting.

American Sniper Movie Review by Kephra Rubin

American Sniper Movie Review by Kephra Rubin

What you may not like:

-Unfocused storytelling that prevents the movie from making a rock solid message
-The film feels rushed, there’s so much to discuss that key moments in Chris Kyle’s life are sort of leafed through to save time, the movie was entertaining enough it could have been longer if it would help flesh things out.

American Sniper Movie Review by Kephra Rubin. Some parts make a point, but drag while doing it. Other parts were thought provoking but rushed.

American Sniper Movie Review, by Kephra Rubin. Some parts make a point, but drag while doing it. Other parts were thought provoking but rushed.

-Dragging points, in spite of it feeling rushed there was a lot of time spent on things that didn’t really pull you in to what ultimately became the overall message of the movie and didn’t help illustrate it, time could have been saved from those scenes and used to flesh out more of Chris Kyle’s struggle with his inner demons and his eventual triumph (if one can ever truly triumph) over them.

-Anticlimactic key moments, things that should have made you erupt in applause, burst into tears etc. weren’t given much of a crescendo at all.

American Sniper Movie Review, by Kephra Rubin. Bradley Cooper does an amazing job.

American Sniper Movie Review, by Kephra Rubin. Bradley Cooper does an amazing job.

What you’ll love:

-Amazing acting from Bradley Cooper he plays it perfectly. Not just because he kind of looks like him, but because he plays that “teetering on the brink” character so well, and this let him add a new dimension to that with the introverted body language and tension of someone poised and ready to fire without an enemy to unleash on.

American Sniper Movie Review, by Kephra Rubin. There are serious messages in this film that can help everyday people understand a soldier's struggle better.

American Sniper Movie Review, by Kephra Rubin. There are serious messages in this film that can help everyday people understand a soldier’s struggle better.

-Great messages. In spite of the movie feeling unfocused, the movie says a lot in a short amount of time. I would think it’s a great movie to help understand what a loved one is going through when they come back from combat. Even if they never fire a shot, it’s such a different environment, different practices and behaviors, it makes it clear why people can feel so out of place at home.

American Sniper Movie Review, by Kephra Rubin. Chris Kyle and wife Taya Kyle. Their eyes say it all, but in many ways Chris Kyle found his way home again, and ultimately the movie shows this in a vindicating, albeit it bittersweet way.

American Sniper Movie Review, by Kephra Rubin. Chris Kyle and wife Taya Kyle. Their eyes say it all, but in many ways Chris Kyle found his way home again, and ultimately the movie shows this in a vindicating, albeit it bittersweet way.

-A good ending, things are wrapped up and finally the messages all come together in one clear point, that we can find our way back to ourselves if we fight for it, that we are all warriors struggling in battles and we need to push forward and keep going, because in some ways you can always come home, you just have to be ready to.

Again, I’m only giving the movie a hard time because I don’t want you getting that disappointment that follows any over-hyped movie. It’s a great movie, you’re going to enjoy it, just don’t expect the world. At the end of the day, it’s still a movie, things won’t be perfect, but that’s never the point. The point is to tell a story that teaches a moral lesson that one can take home, and to do it in an entertaining and engaging way. This movie definitely does that.

I would also say that it’s worth seeing in theaters and not waiting for Netflix or watching it bootlegged because there’s certain scenes that are meaningless without the big sound and big screen.

Thanks for reading, let me know what you thought in the comments.
-Kephra

kephrarubin.wordpress.com

I post as often as I can, but due to a slight case of dyslexia sometimes it is difficult to post quickly. I have to rewrite my work many times for it to be clear and concise. Subscribe and you’ll always know when I have something new up. Thanks in advance.

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Merry Christmas, and how a supernatural thriller with zombies plays into your holiday

Merry Christmas From Kephra Rubin

Merry Christmas From Kephra Rubin

Merry Christmas!

The holidays can be tough, so always remember what “Walk Through the Valley” actually means. We’re all born on the top of one mountain, but meant for another. To realize our truest potential, we must descend, sometimes painfully into the dark and unknown valley below, and when faced with that type of terror, we must choose to walk through, not fully knowing where we will go or if we will make it, we must work through our pain and fear, anger and more to get to the base of who we are meant to be, and then… only then… can we begin to climb. Whatever your holiday brings you, face it full on and rise!

And don’t forget to pig out! Woohoo!

-Kephra

kephrarubin.wordpress.com

Walk Through the Valley: The Hill Tribe, is a supernatural thriller set during the Vietnam War, it is available for ebook now, and very soon paperback.

http://www.amazon.com/Walk-Through-Valley-Hill-Tribe-ebook/dp/B00EZFION6

Feeling Bahumbugish? I made this when I was a kid and if you listen closely to the lyrics it really sums it all up in terms of what christmas really is.

I post as often as I can, but due to a slight case of dyslexia sometimes it is difficult to post quickly. I have to rewrite my work many times for it to be clear and concise. Subscribe and you’ll always know when I have something new up. Thanks in advance.

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