A Tale to Last the Ages Review by Marta Moran Bishop
Five Flowers by Franki deMerle is a beautifully written tale of five women who reincarnate through several lifetimes. From living life as five of King Henry the VIII's wives, through Whitechapel England during the days of Jack the Ripper to America's 1960's.
So well researched is the history, that I was able to imagine life in the eras in which she placed her characters. Traveling back in time, learning what life was like as both a queen to a hippie, I was given a glimpse of what it was like to be a woman then.
Lifetime after lifetime these women fight to learn to find independence and are swept up in intrigue, murder, betrayal and the ultimate sacrifice. Will any of these women break free from this man they find themselves drawn to like a moth to a flame? The same man who eventually betrays them each lifetime? Will any of them find enough strength in themselves to do this and what will the cost to them be?
I loved this book, finding myself unable to put it down. Kudos to Ms. deMerle for taking on such a fabulous and interesting subject and making it into a story to last through the ages.
Highly recommended. Published by Kat Moran Publications, 2012.
On Franki deMerle:
"a compelling writer...a bewitching voice ... an enchanted 'take' on reality" - Billy Kravitz
“Oh my. You are the best thing since Shirley MacLaine. I loved her.” - Gypsy Chief, Fort Collins, CO
"You are an Extraordinaire, Brilliant Woman! Your creation of masterpieces you have developed are easy for any Reader to Enjoy" - Heidi Priestman
RIPPLES ON THE SURFACE:
"Reading this volume of poems by Franki deMerle is an active, generative experience that immerses me in the question of what a poem is. Ripples on the Surface is not surface material; it is the tide of meaning itself. The poems question creativity, longing, love, courage, sacredness, and other themes well known to poetic reflection. This questioning is invitational to reflection and the reader should be warned the possible conversations within Self that emerge could be dangerous. I did not have the sense so much of reading while immersed in these poems as I had my mind open to poetic experience. Be ready to feel, hold confusion, honor longing, greet isolation, uncover the hidden, and bare the soul.
"The strong theme concerns love and the courage to be. This ranges from an existential knowing that “I’ve chosen who I am” (poem 125) to the challenge to “Be what you want to be” (poem 155). DeMerle effects honesty in exploring isolation and hiddenness that manages brilliantly to ripple through the surface to touch the imagination of the reader and emerge as anything but isolation or hiddenness.
"Franki DeMerle, the poet, has a natural knowing of dream symbols and human development. What she does so well that touches the place of poetry in the tradition of personal grounding for human experience is the naming of “Dream Shine” (see poem 131). The dream shine encourages the reader to be poetic if not in verse then no less in being-ness as a journey of the human that has always marked our Western Minds. These 289 poems extend beyond their count to a vast space of aliveness. I trust you will value them." - James Max Gossett, PhD
"Franki deMerle’s poetry collection, Ripples on the Surface, is, on first reading, a journey that leads the reader in a broad exploration of deep personal feelings, experiences, and life-concepts that connect us to her unique personhood by way of our shared awareness, dreams, longings, and losses.
"But it was in the second reading that I found myself drinking more deeply from the well of the larger thoughts and emotions that unite us all as human beings with all our hopes, doubts, imperfections, illusions, and unexplored depths. And that is what gave this reader the most to ponder about as the message of the book.
"The ability to give and receive love is the most prominent theme throughout the collection. Related topics of courage, loss, childhood, friendship, and the unspeakable mysteries of life and of the spirit do indeed ripple through Franki’s poetry in a sensitive eloquence, revealing her true and affirming use of language as a window into the heartfelt music of her soul." – Jennifer Pratt-Walter, poet, composer, harpist
"Ripples on the Surface: I love this book. You just have a wonderful way of evoking emotion from people. They just made me feel hopeful, sad, sentimental, strong...inspired. Each piece allows me to envision something new. I have bought your other books and loved each one. It is as if each book takes you another step higher. Wonderful work! Thank you for the chance to truly read it and enjoy it! My favorites: 4, 8, 13, 30, 42, 99, 118, 178, 226, 263" - Donna Cavanagh, poet, founder of HumorOutcasts.com, and author of Try and Avoid the Speed Bumps
"Ripples on the Surface Review: In a word, this book is exquisite. DeMerle has a rare gift for gentle imagery. The sensitivity she brings to her reflections will touch a melancholy chord deep within all who read her poetry. A must-have for everyone’s collection." - Laurie Hanan, author of Almost Paradise, How Far Is Heaven?, and Another Day in Paradise (Louise Golden mystery series)
"5.0 out of 5 stars wonderful book
"This is a collection of poetry to be savored with little nuggets of truth and beauty that stay with you after you have put the book down. Franki deMerle has a way of using simple words to convey complicated images and thoughts. Well worth your time." - catmomma
"Franki deMerle uses images so vivid that every sense is engaged. The poems have rhythms as moving as music and as subtle as water rippling along in a rocky stream. Each poem captures a moment of realization. These little songs seem very personal, but they speak the emotions of every human heart." - reader from Vancouver, WA
"I decided to read this work as I, like many I know, harbor an interest in Tarot and Regression Therapy (Past Life experiences). The story has a few main characters, aside from 'Brenda' whom is telling the story of Sand. I personally found that I enjoyed the spanned time-frame with historic events and Sand's view on them.
"It opens in the present in the year of 2007 to set up the events that begin in 1958, beginning the story of Sand (Sandy) when she is four years old. Entries go back to the current time with Brenda, then back in time to Sand. They also touch back even further in time with Sand’s dreams, and those identities that the characters embrace. It was very interesting to see how the paths crossed and the past caught up to the present and the effects.
"While reading, it was interesting for me to see how I felt a bond with Sand on her view of the world. She seems to follow her own heart and mind and refuses to allow those in her life influence her. She is open with her thoughts and ideas with a few select friends, but only to a degree.
"While it is summarized as ‘a story of betrayal and forgiveness’, I felt there was so much more. The symbolism is quite apparent throughout the tale, and not just with what each Major Arana of the Tarot represents (for each chapter). There are awareness lessons that can be learned and applied by the reader in daily life if they so choose to see them. I found that I was very involved in this story as I was searching to connect the dots of the past and to see if peace within could be attained for the characters. A very great story that sweeps you along the way." - Ann M. Hauer
"There is so much to like about it. Some of my favorite parts are the narrative philosophical entries about the need for peace; just allowing time to take you on the journey of life." - Victoria Lindstrom
"Franki deMerle wrote one of the most thought provoking books I have read in a long time. Deception Past made you think about society, history, and the tendency we as humans have of deceiving ourselves throughout our life. It covers birth, death, and reincarnation, leaving one wondering about life, death, and our purpose here on this earth. I highly recommend this book to everyone who is interested in human nature or just interesting thoughts. Kudos to Ms. deMerle for her courage in taking on such a interesting subject." - Marta Moran-Bishop
"When Major Ursa finds himself lucky enough to retire with financial security, he relishes the prospect of freedom from having to cope with difficult people and situations every day. However he soon discovers that retirement isn't a simple act of letting go; rather, he finds himself faced with new challenges. Can he let go of past resentments? Will he free his spirit to embrace new opportunities for love and friendship? Is he ready to act compassionately toward a stranger who is coping with pain and danger that he himself has never faced? He begins to realize that the keys to unlocking his new dilemmas are to be found in his previously unexplored and unexpressed dreams and emotions. He explores a new world of symbolism, ancient myth, psychic premonitions, past-life memories, and true love." - Karen VunKannon
'Shortly before 2:30 AM, Daphne awoke from a vivid dream. She dreamt she was in Scotland and had just been widowed. Her husband had been murdered. It was some distant time in the past, and she was dressed in a long black gown with a stiff white headdress She could feel the tightness of her corset contrast the softness of her gown's material on her skin. Richard was there, but other people in the dream were saying he was responsible for her late husband's murder. She was confused and didn't know what to believe. She had thought she could trust Richard, but a voice in the dream announced, "During the Protestant Reformation, these sides were divided." As she wondered what that meant, Richard captured her and took her against her will to a castle, where he raped her. Then, when he left her alone with a woman companion to look after her, the two women escaped. They disguised themselves as men and used bed linens to climb through a window and down the castle wall. She was terrified. She and her companion rode across the nearby border to England, where they thought they would be safe. At first, when they told their story of what had happened, they were given sanctuary by kind people. But after about a week or so, word came to the household from the authorities that she was to be held as a prisoner again. She did not understand why. Then she was told that Richard had also fled Scotland and was also imprisoned, but in another country.'
"Daphne Robin and her sister Deandra were both accustomed to strange dreams. Deandra has dreamed, since childhood, that she was a soldier with lots of brothers. In her dream she was a man and someone was beating her face in. Daphne's dream about Scotland came shortly after her marriage to Richard Gatorman, owner of a construction company as well as Daphne's boss. Scotland was a place Daphne had always wanted to go to so when the dream coincided with Richard announcing that they would be honeymooning in Scotland, she let her excitement override the possibility of a warning. But, Richard had always been the perfect mate. He was loving, caring and offered her everything she could ever want...so she thought. The honeymoon would turn out to be the beginning of her seeing the true Richard she had married. A marriage that she soon realized had been a big mistake. The only out for Daphne becomes sleep in which her dreams have her flying the skies with a handsome man. If it weren't for her dream time she would probably give up on life itself.
"Deandra, being an officer in the Army, enlists the help of her friend Major Ursa-Barrios to help Daphne escape the abuse being inflicted by Richard. Major, as he likes to be called, has had his own dreams over the years. In his dreams he helps a young lady and falls in love with her. Could Daphne possibly be the woman in his dream? Could Major possibly be the man in Daphne's dreams?
"As Deandra, Daphne and Major come together, they start searching for the answers to their dreams. Deandra wanting to know who the person getting their face bashed in is and who are the brothers. Daphne wants to know who the woman in Scotland could be as well as who she soars the skies with. And Major wants to meet the lady from his dreams.
"Franki deMerle has done it again with a book of mystery, love and a certain air of suspense. The more I read, the more I wanted answers to the character's dreams but I wasn't really expecting what the dreams actually turned out to be." - Martha A. Cheves, author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat
"A Different Kind of Love Story
"Dragonfly Dreams was a good read that combined a love story with reoccurring dreams about both the future and past lives. It lends an interesting perspective to analyzing the mind at rest and ties it in nicely with the storyline. This was definitely an enjoyable novel." - Liz
CHILD OF THE UNIVERSE:
"... a lovely collection of poems written in the style of Emily Dickinson. Ms. deMerle has a marvelous way of bringing the world to life. She touches our emotions with color and life, sometimes making us ponder our views and those of society while invoking our senses and mind. As she states: 'We, like all living creatures, are all children of the Universe, and like many, I am a child of the verse.' And in Child Of The Universe, this would sum up the passionate journey one takes in this book." - Marta Moran-Bishop