Mella and the Python Healer

Cover art for Mella and the Python Healer
An ancient story of courage and love.

The ancient story of a young African woman who demonstrates her courage when she seeks the python healer to save her father’s life, was the one that I got the most feedback on from audiences during my storytelling days. It is still one of my personal favorites.

I discovered the original story in an anthology by Merlin Stone entitled “Ancient Mirrors of Womanhood A Treasury of Goddess and Heroine Lore from Around the World.” She uncovered the story in her extensive research of ancient womanhood, and gave a brief recounting of “Mella.”

As a storytelIer I have developed a repertoire of stories about fascinating people in history. Of all the stories from around the world that are collected in Ms. Stone’s fascinating volume, the story of Mella stuck with me, and I was inspired to share it, using my imagination to fill in some of the details. Ms. Stone was gracious to give me the rights to publish my version of the story in Dreamscape: Real Dreams Really Make A Difference. The second edition is now available as an e-book, and soon to be available for print orders as well.

I had the opportunity to tell the story on WBAI Radio back in the nineties, with the assistance of Paul Ruest who engineered, and with accompaniment on the upright bass by Bobby Vidal. I rediscovered this recording recently while going through my files and was taken in by the story all over again.

Courage and honor and faithfulness never get old, and the story of this African girl who becomes a queen, remains as vibrant and relevant today as it was centuries ago, and may even be the origin of the medical symbol of the serpent still used today.

It’s been a few months since I posted anything because I have been obsessed with writing my novel “Marvelina” that I am happy to say is nearing completion.  So I thought I would take a little breather and make this story available.

At ninety nine cents for thirteen and a half minutes, it’s a great deal, and will entertain people of all ages.

Writing and Gardening

Gardening and writing a novel go hand in hand, each providing me with relief from the other. The novel isn’t ready to share yet, but in the spirit of sharing the pleasure of flowers, here are some pictures from my spring garden…

New Single, Unnamed Flower

Martha Cinader: Unnamed Flower

Unnamed Flower is now available for download at CD Baby and iTunes, and will soon be available at most of your favorite digital download sites.

Unnamed Flower a new single by Martha Cinader and Sabine Worthmann
Unnamed Flower a new single by Martha Cinader and Sabine Worthmann

This poem, Unnamed Flower, isn’t about me, it’s about each of you, who at one time or another in life needs to be reminded that you are such a rare and unique and beauty, that sometimes it is difficult for other people to see. Recorded more than ten years ago, this poem wanted a chance to bloom in people’s ears, and so, without much fanfare, here it is to sing its own praises, available for 99 cents of your hard earned money.

Sabine Worthmann composed and played the haunting music, with some help from Heinrich Koebberling on percussion. Ralph “Pinguin” Kessler recorded it, and offers a free surround sound version of it for those of you equipped to listen to it that way, at http://www.masterpinguin.de/surround/index.htm.

If you listen to it and like it, please leave a comment. I would love to hear from you.

I am a rare unnamed flower. 
No one recognizes me when they gaze at me 
because no one has ever seen a flower like me 
or stroked petals like mine before.
My scent is delicately intoxicating. 
Its essence is measured in precious drops of love, 
beads of sweat, streams of milk, 
rivers of emotions, sensations, libations.
I am often misunderstood, misrepresented. 
misguided, intimate with misfortune, 
but never feared or forgotten.
Women trust and love me, or envy and disparage me. 
Some look in my eye and read poetry there. 
Others hate me, 
because I am such a beautiful flower.
Men buy me, cut me, sell me, pluck me, 
poke their fingers around trying to find my center, 
put aspirin in my water, 
and marvel at my resilience.
I am a rare unnamed flower. 
My scent is delicately intoxicating. 
Its essence is measured in precious drops of love, 
beads of sweat, streams of milk, 
rivers of emotions, sensations, libations.

Free Download until March 1 – Unnamed Flower

Unnamed Flower is a new single, to be released on March 1.
Unnamed Flower is a new single, to be released on March 1.

In advance of officially releasing it on March 1, I am offering you, my website visitors, this free mp3 download of Unnamed Flower, at SoundCloud. It will soon be available at CD Baby and all your favorite music download sites.

A long time ago someone told me that I was like a beautiful rose in a land where people only appreciated tulips.  I needed to hear that at the time. This poem, Unnamed Flower, isn’t about me, it’s about each of you, who at one time or another in life needs to be reminded that you are unique and beautiful. Recorded more than ten years ago, it wanted a chance to bloom, and so I am finally offering up this spring flower as a single.

Sabine Worthmann composed and played the music, with some help from Heinrich Koebberling on percussion. Ralph “Pinguin” Kessler recorded it, and offers a free surround sound version of it at http://www.masterpinguin.de/surround/index.htm.

Rabbit Stories for Everyone

Rabbit Stories by Kim Shuck is published by Poetic Matrix Press. Cover art by Michael Horse.
Rabbit Stories by Kim Shuck is published by Poetic Matrix Press. Cover art by Michael Horse.

If you had a trickster rabbit following you through life, and you started keeping company with someone who had a fox, and even Robin Hood hovering nearby, would Rabbit and Fox and Robin Hood start hanging out together too?  In Rabbit Stories, by Kim Shuck, they do.

Rose bakes with flowers, gardens with wisdom, beads with intent, sprinkles tobacco over buried streams, and loves a man on the other side of the Atlantic. This is the life of an indigenous woman as observed by herself and Trickster Rabbit,  who cleverly calls her Rabbit Food.  Together they inhabit a land without borders, where new stories are told by old characters.

Kim Shuck weaves a complexity of fibers plucked from a disparate modern world, and gives us a thing of beauty. I took small bites of these lovingly crafted stories, relishing each tidbit,  not wanting to reach the end, just like I would the cookies that Rabbit Food bakes when insomnia calls. But these stories are poetry without beginning or end, catching the reader in an intricate web of space and time.

It is best to read Rabbit Stories just as it was written, with intent, to pause, to think, to absorb the layers of time and meaning. By the end you might find yourself looking around more closely to observe what mischief has been created by a trickster running free in your yard, and watching your every move.

 

 

It’s better the second time

You can take her out of New York, but she’ll still want bagels. Not from the supermarket either. She might even dream about bagels and wake up with a little drool leaking from between her lips. But that doesn’t mean she ever knew how to make them herself.

Bagels made from scratch, with garlic, onion and sea salt.
Bagels made from scratch, with garlic, onion and sea salt.

It turns out, (after very little research) that boiling the dough in honey water for a minute on each side, and using a little malt in the batter, is what makes a bagel a bagel, (baked at 425 for twenty minutes.)

The first time I made bagels, I handled them too much, and they wilted on me. This time I didn’t rush things. I let them take their time rising the first time, and the second time too when I poked my finger in each one to make a hole. Then after boiling them, I laid them down gently on a well greased pan. The second time was much better.  I’m sure that the more intimate I get with my bagel batter, the better the bagel will be!

Poetry, Storytelling, Fiction, Creative Non-Fiction, Drama

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