Writers Guild members publish

By April Pyles - Special to the Register

Three members of the Point Pleasant Writers Guild have successfully managed to get their books published over the holidays.

Sue Underwood (Burletta Sue Underwood) discussed her book of poems entitled “Roses in the Snow, Powerful Words of Faith” over 100 poems written with a heart for God.

One of poetry’s allures is the variety of interpretations of a poem generated by different readers. For instance, the poem for which Underwood’s book came to have its title, can have both a literal meaning and a spiritual meaning. Literally, someone places beautiful roses on the snow-covered grave of a loved one. One interpretation could be that grief feels cold and wintry in the heart, but God’s presence brings warmth to the heart, like a bouquet of fragrant red roses. Her book can be purchased through Amazon.com as an e-book (Kindle) or in paperback form.

Marilyn Clarke’s “Imposter” and Feryle Lawrence’s “Amazing Stories of Faith and Inspiration” can also be purchased through Amazon.com as both paperback and e-book. In addition, Lawrence’s book can be obtained through Barnes & Nobel and Westbo Press.

Sometimes a poem has its origin in the “long ago” and yet can find itself in a magazine and on a musical album many decades later. Such was the case of a poem read recently by Underwood. It was published in an inspirational publication, “Shield of Faith” out of Cleveland, TN, and the words were are follows: “What can I give Him, poor as I am? If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb; if I were a Wise Man, I would do my part; yet what I can, I give Him: give my heart.”

Members of the Guild were curious as to the name of the poem. Carol Newberry used her laptop to punch in the words and came up with the following: Originally, the words were penned by Christina Georgina Rosetti in the mid 1840’s as the last verse of her poem “In the Bleak Midwinter.” They were put to music and can be found in 15 different hymnals. The words also form the nucleus of a song written and sung by Steven Curtis Chapman entitled “In the Bleak Midwinter” on his album “Joy” of 2012. Who knows maybe Underwood’s poem “Roses in the Snow” might one day be set to music and sung by a world-renown artist 170 years from now.

April Pyles shared a short quiz put together by John Patrick Grace of the Herald-Dispatch newspaper entitled “What’s your cultural literacy quotient?” He had taken 30 examples from 5,000 names, phrases, dates, and concepts published in 1988 by E.D. Hirsch, Jr., an English professor at the University of Virginia, items which Hirsch considered “essential knowledge.” Some of the items included expressions such as (the reader completes the thought): “Half a loaf is…,” “Familiarity breeds…,” “Don’t look a gift horse…;” and “All’s well that….”

For the Guild’s next meeting, it was suggested that members bring a list of five “sayings” or “idioms” that have been passed down through their family. It may be interesting to see which ones are hold in common here in West Virginia.

Also, for the Guild’s next meeting, Newberry will review Section II, pages 13-19, of “The Basics” from Sandy Tritt’s book, “The Plain English Writer’s Workbook.”

The Point Pleasant Writers Guild meets the first and third Wednesdays of each month from 1-3 p.m. at the Mason County Library. For more information, they can be contacted online at ppwritersguild.blogspot. All writers are welcome to visit and participate at the meetings.

By April Pyles

Special to the Register