Wednesday, July 17, 2019

June 20, 2019

Kathy Flotz, Beverly Stanislawski, Caren Von See, Marilyn Kessler, Bob Philpot,
Al Koch, Dennis McLean, H.S. Valia, Shirley Vaughan, Diane Stratton, Helena Qi.


A vote of approval for the June 20, 2019 minutes was first given by AL KOCH and seconded by SHARON BUCKMAN.

Al Koch’s son continues to assist his father with publishing his book. The galley proofs have been sent to the editor.


CAREN VON SEE CH. 14—Antonio and Sara continue planning the trip to the States. CH. 15—Antonio addresses Angelo and Uncle Lorenzo’s arguing.

MARILYN KESSLER CH 2—Grandmother opens her family Bible and reviews the numerous family names musing that only happiness is recorded here. Grandmother writes a note about John trekking to Colorado to find gold.

AL KOCH—relayed his tale his herculean efforts to rebuild a defunct, vintage soda fountain, which he put in his basement.

HARDARSHAN SINGH VALIA—read a poem titled “Message on a Canvas” where the viewer admires a painting and offers prayers of gratitude.

SHIRLEY VAUGHAN— Attendees volunteered to read various parts in a Shirley’s Screenplay play about the futuristic world of the Planet Turaeus.

HELENA QI—read her travel log about her family’s trip to Milan and the sternly decorated train station, which carries memories of the notorious fascist era.

McLEAN—read a chapter from her book The Eye of the Gift Horse about the self-satisfied contentment he felt when he was with his family.

BEVERLY STANISLAWSKI—relays two poetic tales about a wolf escaping the woodman’s ax titled, “The Wolf’s Bane”, and another titles “The Family Quilt” about a mother preparing for her daughter’s wedding.

KATHERINE FLOTZ—read her poem To Cole on His Bar Mitzvah praising her grandson’s character.

The meeting adjourned at 8:00 P.M.

Respectfully submitted:


Wednesday, June 12, 2019

June 6, 2019

The Meeting began at 6:15 P.M.


Katherine Flotz, Dennis Mclean, Caren Von See, Hardarshan Singh Valia, Marilyn Kessler, Bob Philpot, Bev Stanislawski, Sharon Buckman, Diane Stratton, Helena Qi, Amy Brailey, Al Koch, and Danielle Johnson.


A vote of approval for the June 6, 2019, minutes was given by CAREN VON SEE and seconded by KATHERINE FLOTZ.




AL KOCH shared that his book was sent to his publisher and should be in print soon.


Katherine Flotz read a poem from her book, A Pebble in my Shoe, that she wrote after her father left for the army. Her family prayed for him every night, as they recalled their father’s smiling face, his loving touch, and their tears. When he left, he did not know that he wouldn’t return.

Dennis McLean read an excerpt from his book, The Eye of the Gift Horse, about a young boy, Sidney, and his sister, Maddie, who stayed overnight at their grandmother’s house. Sidney entertained his grandmother with his superman antics.

Caren Von See read the first four pages from Chapter 14 of her book, My Treasure Chest. Excited, Antonio explained the upcoming location they were to visit on the cruise they were taking to celebrate their second anniversary.

Valia Hardarshan Singh read two poems—“Beyond Reach,” about his joy in recalling childhood memories, and “Tale of Two Coffee Houses,” where a poet was inspired by other renowned poets who, long ago gathered at the same coffee house from various corners of Kolkata. He described the poetry as fallen-leaves of poetry chips.

Marilyn Kessler in the forward of her book, a woman speaks from the grave as she recalls her life, as well as the person she loved and married. The ghost wondered if people would remember her for his kindness, her gentleness, of maybe just her name…Harleen Harrington Adam.

Bob Philpot read from the first chapter of his book, Strange Friend about, Zeb, his main character, who is secretly observing the events as they unfold. Two men are forcing another man to dig his own grave at gunpoint in the desert. After accessing the situation, Zeb fires his rifle and kills one of the two men who are watching the captive man dug his grave.

Beverly Stanislowski read an excerpt from her short story, The Decision, about a man named Stefan, a member of the Arditi (The Royal Italian army elite). As the words of Signore Maggiore, rang in his ears he paused while crossing a bridge. The bullet that whizzed past him grazed his cheek, leaving a scar. Stephan felt that the medal he received did no symbolize his bravery, but his foolishness. 

Sharon Buckman read a story about Sharon and her husband, Ray, meeting their new neighbors, Jean and Mike Henry, when the Buckman’s paid a visit to their cabin. The two couples shared coffee as the chatted about the Buckman’s experience of building their cabin. The next day Sharon tried to go fishing. As she stepped onto the pier, she realized the pier was floating and not secure. She explained the floating pier to Ray; he laughed. Later that day, Sharon lit what she called, “a real white man’s fir.” Ray threw the stove out along with the shelf, groceries and all. Instead of bacon and eggs, they had cold cereal for breakfast.

Al Koch read a short story titled “School’s out for the Summer.” This story is from his soon to be released book. The student sang, “School’s out, Schools out, Teacher let the monkeys out…as the students walked home, looking forward to their summer vacation. The staunch Sister Superior kept a close watch on the students throughout the school year. When the students left, the sisters packed up and went to their summer training camp. Delighted in their release from their “scholastic prison,” the students walked home and looked forward to their summer freedom. In today’s schools, most students don’t wear uniforms and they ride to school on busses.

Helena Qi read an excerpt from chapter one, titled, “Lake Como.” Helena and her family were on their way to Italy for a two-week expedition. Mussolini fled Rome after WWII with the hope of escaping over the Italian Alps into Switzerland. The unscrupulous conductor charged Helena a second time for their tickets. Helena’s family stayed in the village called, Verena, is a charming town, called, The Pearl of the Lake. charming.  When Helena’s husband requested a refund for the second set of tickets, he was told they weren’t refundable. The conductor lied. Still and all, Helena sad it was a good trip.

The Meeting Adjourned at 8:15 P.M.

Respectfully submitted by Caren Von See