The Tune of Murder

 This last heartache is a long time leaving/ Die for shame darling. Die for shame.

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The Tune of Murder

LUKE MICHAELS could see the sidebar of the bed frame inches above him, and thought it too thin and polished to be any part of a cross, and yet it was, distinctly that, in his mind and heart. He would have touched it except that he could not lift his arms. One of his hands was palm-down on his abdomen and he recalled with great peace that he was injured. He wasn’t dying, though, only falling toward sleep, something very pleasant to him. And music was rushing through him. He heard it in his head and felt it in his body, and less so, though warm, against his hands. He hummed it with his entire fading self. The cross of music, music, and the cross, love eternal, love. Love. Music. Sweet blessed love music. Blessed music.

Who killed handsome musician, singer, songwriter Luke Michaels? What clues lie in the books of lyrics written in his script? Young Johnny Rowland is arrested for the murder and although his great aunt Letitia knows he is hardly innocent, she is convinced he is not guilty. She enlists the aid of her neighbor, Galway Evans, a former attorney who is now an aspiring handyman, and they begin an investigation into a music community that seems to embrace both God and the devil. Letitia Dunbar follows leads into family and her church while Galway enters the musicians’ world. They discover the ties that bind family and friends and truths that more than solve a murder. “Die for shame, darling. Die for shame.”

Strains of Long Ago (a novelette)

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Join amateur sleuths Galway Evans and Letitia Dunbar in another music-laced mystery: Strains of Long Ago!

Galway is a lanky attorney-turned-handyman, desirous of being truly good at his new work. Letitia is a childless widow ~ petite, bowed, and fearless. Letitia remembers a long-ago day when a fellow student, Harold Wilson, climbed from an upstairs classroom window down a drainpipe. He was so nimble. “That was grand,” she tells Galway. “Just grand.”

Now Harold Wilson has been found dead in his storm cellar and Letitia can’t let it go.

Strains of Long Ago—Available in print or ebook at Amazon and other book sources. Pbk 60 pages ~ August 2018 ~ ISBN 9780989503419 ~ $2.95

Coming Soon: Strains of Long Ago

Another Galway Evans and Letitia Dunbar story is on the way, involving music (no surprise), a small neighborhood community, death, jealousy, anger, and compassion. Galway has to fight his fear of fear and of all crawly, buzzing things. Mrs. Dunbar is safeguarding the world bit by bit.

Eclipse Shadows

Here are a few photos of leaf shadows during the eclipse August 21, 2017.

The first time I experienced an eclipse (??when was that??), I stepped outdoors and saw multiple shadows like these.  I was frightened, but not for long. They don’t look like leaves but how could they be  shadows of the eclipse itself? the sun and moon crossing paths?  However they occurred, the result is magical, and if you’re not alone and surprised by it, it’s very pleasant. The world is muted and softer, as if it’s sleeping a moment or as if I could sleep on the shadows, a billowy sleep.

8 Foot Sunfish? Yes.

The world is now even more fascinating. If this fish eluded scientists, but fishermen knew about it, what else has stayed hidden, perhaps deliberately? A Yeti? Bigfoot?   Or is this a hoax like the mermaid? A false documentary on that sea female gave me hours of nice thought and then came the let-down. Check the marvelous fish out: Article

 

 

Leaf-Tailed Gecko; one of the wonders

While surfing the web looking at photos of the world’s smallest creatures, I was stopped by a photo of the Leaf-tailed gecko. Because of the wonder of what is visible, I feel confident that what isn’t seen is equally marvelous, and all around us. I wish I could hold some of these tiny creatures or at least have them in view long enough to satisfy my eyes and curiosity. I’m very thankful for the people who share their research with the rest of us.  My female sleuth character, Letitia Dunbar, shares my fascination, of course.

Toad or Frog?

Frog at Cave HollowThis frog was found near the opening of a large cave at Cave Hollow, Warrensburg, Missouri. The cave wasn’t on the main paths lacing the wooded park. This fellow is a nice specimen. Frogs like water, they’re more reclusive and fearful. They have smooth skin, long legs, webbed feet. The opposites traits are those of toads.

I’ve read that the tiny ones hiding in the grooves of some tree bark are also frogs, but I remember catching a few–they were the size of my thumbnail, and were dry and bumpy, and a mottled color much like the bark. I was told then that they were tree toads. So, I like toads, but I can’t find the kind I recall. I hope I didn’t make them up. Below is a closer photo of the Cave Hollow frog.

closeupfrogOh, yes, I forgot–bulging eyes, another characteristic of the frog. These look like the headlamps on some cars (I guess the cars took after the frogs, not vice versa).

Ukulele: a Pleasing Instrument

christmasdecorating2014 006This is my newest instrument. It’s a Diamond Head 200, a very inexpensive line, but so far the instrument tunes to 440, holds its tune, and is easy to play. I would like to own a standard-sized hammer dulcimer, a cello, and a concertina, but there’s little room left in the house. I’ve heard for years that people who can do something, do it; those who can’t, teach it. I’m wondering if those who can play instruments do so; those who can’t, collect them. Music is a pleasure either way.

Some Instruments around the house

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The largest one is a small hammer dulcimer. The slender wooden hammers are for striking the strings. The smaller stringed instrument is a psaltery, played by plucking with the fingers or by striking with a plectrum. James Becker Becker Instruments made these two instruments. The pipe on the left is a fife. On the right is a recorder and a penny whistle. My cat likes the stringed instruments best.