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Book Reviews

Review of Until Today: Stories and Poems of Life as I Know It By Jerry M. White

Martha Cheves of A Book and a Dish has a new review of Until Today: Stories and Poems on Life as I Know It located here and on her website below as well.

http://marthaskitchenkorner.blogspot.com/

New Review - August 15th, 2012

Until Today: Stories and Poems on Life as I Know It – Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish

My Honor to be His

The more I see in this life of mine
The more I see that nothing is mine
The more I see in this life I live
The more I see how much I can give

My life is honored by who owns the glory
My life is owned by who writes the story
I go where I’m sent; I go where I’m led
I want only to say what He wants said

I really try to do everything I should
It hurts me inside to not even do the things I could
My life feels, and is, sometimes out of control
It is so very hard to always be so very bold

What honor I give Him through my life every day
It is an honor to give it every way
He honors me with love and His forgiveness is mine
But the honor and the privilege to serve Him is all mine

It is through this service that my life has meaning
It is on this honor my salvation is leaning
My price has been paid by His life laid down
I will do the things I should without a single frown

Jerry M. White wrote this poem in 2004 and it has to be one of my favorites. In so few words he really says it all.

Until Today isn’t your typical book of poems. Jerry White starts each poem(s) off with a little story explaining not only what they are about but what prompted him to write them. He takes us through his spiritual world with poems like the one above. We go through his family world with poems such as Audacity. This is the story of his grandmother being rescued from a mental hospital. His poem What Have We Done (another one of my favorites) brings to light what has been lost with the changes of time. He walks us through the loss of his grandchildren to cancer and the true meaning of family through Grandma’s Apron. He takes us on through life in the world of work with poems such as Light the Fuse and then through memories with The Last Day of School. And to tie it all up he gives us the world of the Living and the Dead as he points out the problems in Nameless Numbers and concludes with Pillaged which leaves no doubt that our government is breaking.

I’ve read and written reviews for Author Jerry M. White before and have to say that with each he gets better and better. Seldom do I read one that doesn’t hit a cord from my own life and own feelings. I thoroughly enjoy his works of art.
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By
This review is from: Until Today: Stories and Poems on Life as I Know It (Hardcover)

My Summary:

Until Today: Stories and Poems on Life as I Know It is author Jerry White's latest work. It is a book of poetry; but don't be fooled, it is also much more. The book also contains vivid stories and introductions to many of the poems, providing an explanation and giving each poem more meaning. Until Today is broken up into four segments: Life in the Spiritual World, Life in the World of Family, Life in the World of Work, and Life in the World of the Living. Some of the poems are more just Mr. White's thoughts regarding a certain issue, such as politics, while others are more prayer-like. He shares many memories from his past and there is a pleasant feeling of nostalgia. There's something for everyone in this book--the poems range on a wide variety of topics including faith, sports, handymen, movies (Star Wars), and even the Civil War!

My Review:

Until Today is a wonderful addition to the world of poetry! Mr. White's introductions and personal stories give his poems more meaning and break up the monotony that sometimes comes when reading large volumes of poetry. As for his poetry, his poems can be poignant and convicting. Many have a depth and insight that is especially apparent when he explains his faith and Christianity. He is vulnerable as he shares his thoughts on his faith journey, which endears him to the reader and makes the reader think about their own faith journey (the poem Waiting Room is one example). I especially loved the poem Only A Moment which is inspired by Max Lucado's book One Incredible Moment, which tells how Christ's birth changed the world. It's a powerful poem, which speaks of the significance of Christ's birth, its truth, and what it does for us. There are many more poems like this that will inspire and uplift or just bring a smile to your face. This is a great book for people of all ages and walks of life!

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My Review of UNTIL TODAY: STORIES AND POEMS ON LIFE AS I KNOW IT

I enjoy poetry but not the complexities of it. I enjoy a beautiful piece without trying to figure out what is being said. The collections of poems and stories presented in UNTIL TODAY were well written in a tone without complexity. This made for an easy, intrigued and interesting read. There are times when I enjoy a great story so much so that I wish it would never end. This was the treat I received when reading Jerry White’s UNTIL TODAY. The poems and collections of short stories were faith building blocks that flowed into a continuation of inspiration, motivation and self-realization. The profound messages in this book speak to the depths of one’s inner being. Jerry White exposes his heart and mind allowing the reader to journey with him in his exploration of ‘life as he knows it’. UNTIL TODAY is a must add to any poetry collection. Jerry White has introduced to me a style of originality in the area of faith building Poetry. His work is phenomenal and will leave you in wait for another book in his collection.

Crystal Kelly

Contributing Writer for www.relatemag.com   and  www.suite101.com

www.inspiredshelves.wordpress.com

http://cleanreadsbookclub.webs.com/

www.twitter.com/cryskellyauthor

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Review of Moments of Mine A Collection of Thoughts in Poem by Jerry M. White

Moments of Mine is a wonderful, beautiful book of poetry.  It is inspiring, uplifting and very insightful. The way the poems capture you is beyond amazing.  My favorite was the poem called “The Only Day”.  I give this book five stars...hands down some of the best poetry I've ever read.

Joanie Fulton, Author of Spawn of Satan

LegacyReviews.net

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"Moments of Mine" is a book of poetry with the foundation of Christ, and Christian living, as its center. The majority of the poems are written in the quatrain style, and most have a carpe diem message. Mr. White has occasionally written a paragraph or two to help the reader understand his thought process or what was happening in his life at the time of writing certain poems. Something this particular reviewer enjoys knowing. The poetry inside "Moments of Mine" is easy to read, easy to follow, and at times offers hope. Other poems have a tendancy to sound preachy, but generally, I believe Mr. White's intent is to offer hope and guidance to live a Christian based life. I think this book of Christian Poetry would be comfortable on the bookshelves of any Christian's home
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Reviewed by: Poetic Monthly Magazine
Reviewer: Adrianne Hurtig
Rating: ****

 

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Book Review for Moments of Mine by Jerry M. White.

 

Moments of Mine is a wonderful, poetic, and entertaining stroll down memory lane with author, Jerry M. White.  In his book, we are reminded of the importance found within faith, love, understanding, and patience. He lovingly shares his heartfelt feelings about all that he holds close, yet, he does not hesitate to reveal his opinions regarding issues in society. His words are profound, whether he is speaking softly about the tenderness of life or boldly about its hardships and shortcomings. He is an author and a poet who clearly speaks his mind. Though all of his poems hold such unique treasures, I found a special beauty in the following three: "No Apologies," "Tick, Tick, Tick," and "The Road from Montgomery." There is a special wisdom that breathes throughout this book, and though it has its moments where your eyes get bigger as you read the honesty within, you still find yourself learning something. It is written in such a way that you can almost hear the voice of Jerry M. White narrating his thoughts in the back of your mind somewhere, and that is what makes his words feel more personal and very much worth the read. 

Rating: 5 stars

 

T.S.Wilkins

The Book Cubby

Poetry Reviewer

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Moments of Mine - Jerry M. White, Author

6:35 AM Posted by MAC


Taco Soup -
One of Jerry M. White's favorite recipes

3 lb. package of boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 cans whole kernel corn
2 cans tomatoes (rotel, diced, stewed)
2 cans black beans
1 package (dry) ranch salad dressing

Boil chicken breasts until done. Cut in good sized chunks and place back in water.
Add corn, tomatoes, black beans and salad dressing to chicken. (Add the liquid from the canned vegetables to stock). Bring all ingredients to a boil and then reduce heat and let simmer for about 15 minutes. Serve with sour cream, shredded cheese and flour tortillas

Moments of Mine - Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat

The Trouble with Trouble

The trouble with trouble
Is it takes so long
To make things right
That once were not wrong

To forget and move forward
To put out of our mind
The mischief that hounds us
We can't leave behind

The trouble with trouble
Is that it's so hard to see
It happens to others
But certainly not me

I have friends who love me
That truly love me and care
But they cannot help
If my troubles aren't bare

Please God give us strength
To ask for our needs
That those who love us
May be blessed by their deeds

Your love surrounds us
Through our friends we are sure
They fill our lives daily
With a love that is pure

I now know that You care
Your love for us all
Is shown through tough times
If we would only call

We know that sometimes
Life is certainly not fair
That You will settle our troubles
When we Truly Believe You are there

As I read the poems written by Jerry White, and the stories behind each poem, I couldn't help but feel the love and devotion flow from each word. Mr. White has a way of taking any circumstance, both happy and sad, and turning it into something beautiful. The poem above was one of my favorites and I think you too will be able to feel his love for God, family and friends as you read this piece of word art. 

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Moments of Mine
PublishAmerica                                                                                        Pages  201                                                                                              

Author Jerry M. White

Moments of Mine is a compilation of personal, spiritual, political and social commentary in poetic form. The poetic forms include blank verse, free verse, and the ballad.

The section entitled Moments with Family consists of elegies and panegyric poems. These poems are very personal in nature, dedicated to family, friends, and acquaintances of the poets. While these poems undoubtedly have special meaning for the loved ones and friends of the White family, these poems can not be fully appreciated by the general reader. We would not expect the average student or reader to grasp the complexities of the work of poets like Sylvia Plath or Amiri Baraka without having been introduced to biographical information about the poet’s life. While the reader will definitely have a sense of how much the subjects were loved by the poet; the reader will not fully appreciate the depth of the poets love and grief, without knowing more about the poet and his relationships with the subjects of his poems. The poems found in Moments with Family would be more fully appreciated by the general public if they were contained in a personal memoir, where the personal relationships between the poet and his subjects could be more fully developed


Since this volume consists of a great number of poems, this review will focus on the poems with the most universal appeal. The poem titled “In the Company of Poets” sets the tone for this volume of poetry. It reveals the poet as a contemporary historical reporter of current events, who at times influences the perspective of his peers and at other times provides a public voice for the communal perspective on specific subjects, events, and periods. “In the Company of Poets” is a great introduction for students new to poetry, it illustrates that poetry is not restricted to the themes of love, nature, and beauty.


The selection of poems compiled under the subheading Moments from Faith offer examples of how to follow in the footsteps of Christ. “The Work of Us All” encourages the reader to engage in frequent acts of kindness, emphasizing that no act of kindness is too small to go unnoticed by God. In “Matthew 20:26-28” the reader is called upon to invest in people not things. The poet depicts the wealthy and fulfilled man as the man who has dedicated his life to serving his fellow man. In “Through God’s Grand Glory” the reader is instructed to curb his desires and passions and submit to God’s will and guidance. The reader is reminded to refrain from boasting and taking credit for what God has provided. “First Found Faith” asks parishioners to examine their church attendance and religious practices to determine whether or not they are adhering to custom and tradition, or if they truly desire a relationship with God based on their own understanding and desire to obtain salvation. Both new and mature Christians will find words of inspiration, encouragement and conviction in poems from this category.


Under the subtitle Moments as a Teacher there are poems for teachers and students, some offering praise, some bestowing criticism, and others offering “food for thought”.
“Jacob’s Revenge” trumpets the success of a student suffering from autism, who managed to overcome his condition and matriculate from the special education program to the traditional academic classroom setting. “Language Barrier” conveys with empathy the daily frustration experienced by one who suffers from Asperger’s Disease. “The Teacher’s Broom” employs the masterful use of metaphor to illustrate the purpose and function of a master educator. “Dichotomy of Geometry” cautions educators to refrain from prejudging a student’s abilities based dress, socio-economic class, race, or culture---there is often more to the student than meets the eye. Every teacher will understand and appreciate the vivid picture painted in “Class Chaos”---even the most seasoned teacher will have similar stories to tell. “Alphabet Soup” exposes the tendency of administrators and medical professionals to excuse the student’s failure to perform in the classroom, behave appropriately, and respect and acknowledge adult authority on conditions beyond the student’s control. “People to Please” provides food for thought for the class clown and other unmotivated students. This poem should definitely be shared with students of all ages. Both teachers and students are treated with respect and empathy here.


The final subheading Moments from Life is dedicated to social issues, current events, and war. “Marching Madness” asks the American public to critically examine and question the motivation for the US presence in the Middle East. “Abu Ghraib” divulges the irony of the scandal surrounding the Iraqi prisoners of war in the custody of US soldiers; in light of the fact that the US presents itself as the global human rights police. In “Warless World” the poet posits that war is inevitable if corruption and abuse of power is to be thwarted. “Turbulent Times” provides a great summary of the politico-social events of the late 50s through the late 60s. The “Road from Montgomery” questions the progress that the African-American community has made socially and economically since the 1960s.


Moments of Mine offers something for everyone. The reader will find spiritual inspiration. Those suffering from grief will find words of solace. Those committed to the education of children will find words of encouragement. Students will also find words of encouragement. Those who follow current events will find controversial subjects to debate. As a teacher, I found a great deal of poetry worthy of introducing into the classroom. Moments of Mine is a great example that poetry can discuss themes other than love, nature, and beauty.

Reviewed by Cheryl Stillwell of The Book Place

 


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