Life is Too Short to Read a Boring Book

it is ok to take out the bookmark and move on

Image by Pexels from Pixabay

Internal messages

I don’t know at what point in my life I got the message that it is somehow sacrilegious to not finish a book that I have started reading. But because of this strong message in my mind I have books all over my house with a bookmark in it.

I must have 12 unfinished novels.

For some reason it is very difficult to just take hold of that bookmark and slide it free from the book.

Perhaps it is not the right time for the reading of that particular book.

Perhaps the interest that we initially had in the book was lost when we began reading it and it did not live up to our expectations.

Perhaps it is simply just not a very good read?

Still, it is very difficult for me to give up on a book. There’s something about quitting that runs through my mind. There are messages from my parents about following things through and not giving up on something that you have started.

Life is too short to press through a boring book.

But I’m here to tell you that life is simply too short to hold onto things that aren’t of interest. Your time is better spent moving on to other books that seize you by your emotions and carry you through page after page.

So pull out that bookmark! Set the book aside and if the timing is right later you can come back to it. But there’s no sense in beating yourself up or forcing yourself to plunder through a book that bores you to tears.

There are so many books on my bookshelf. At the rate I read, that I would never finish them all! I decided there’s nothing wrong with testing out a book for a few chapters and then deciding whether to continue.

No more plundering through boring books for me. And if you needed the permission to pull out that bookmark and move on to something else — here you are! You have my permission!

An analogy

I made a decision some years ago while eating a plate of cold french fries from some fast food place somewhere, that with the caloric content of french fries there’s simply no point in eating them unless they are delicious. I decided that if the fries suck I’m going to throw them out.

There’s simply no sense in putting my body through the difficulties of processing the caloric garbage of french fries unless they’re so damn good that I just can’t help myself. So if they’re not hot and delicious they go in the garbage.

Just an analogy. No reason to burn or throw out the book that bores you. You can set it aside or donate it and free up a little space in your home. Don’t hang on, hold on, and press yourself through something that is uninteresting or simply not your thing.

Save your reading time for books that move you.

Read the books that move you, inspire you, entertain you, teach you, and give your life that ooey-gooey feeling of cuddling up with a good book.

It is totally okay.


Christina Ward is an avid reader, poet, and writer from North Carolina. She is also writing a book of her own that she one day hopes doesn’t bore the masses. Stay in touch for book releases.

On the Outskirts of the Blue Ridge

a poem about an afternoon drive through the beautiful foothills of the N.C. mountains

Image by Christian B. from Pixabay

Hilltop mobile homes
parked in rows with
weary cars and tufts
of unruly grass.
They are weathered,
as am I.
Collections of scrap-metal,
small gardens boasting
late tomatoes, plump
red flashes on the vine.
Corn fields in thick
mounds that hug the earth.
Bovine fields gathered in fences.

Each blind bend in the road
is a new thing of some old things
to see, to let my eyes and soul
linger there in possibility.
Wouldn’t it be nice to
live here in this quiet
gathering of apple orchards
and tender rolling hills
that reach here and there
to the sky?—the way that mountains do.

The clouds move in thick
syrupy drifts over the peaks
rolling carelessly down each
curve, making a tender crawl
to the valleys before the trees
swallow their mists. Everything
moves slower here.

Christmas tree farms dot the steep
embankments, sloping up toward sky.
A mountain stream appears
and winds the same path as we—
it moves silently, adrift a stony path
alongside the road, carrying
inner-tubers, canoeists, brightly-colored
Saturday fun in the cool waters
of Blue Ridge. Everything
moves slower here, as do we.

Christina Ward is a nature writer and poet from North Carolina. Stay in touch!

Tea and Memories

a free verse poem

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Hot tea, infused with sugar
white, granular, swallowed-up.
Powdered creamer swirls, 
slips inside, a marriage
of “Good Morning” 
and “Wake up”
to me, sleepy on the couch.

Pungent warmth to tongue, to throat,
to the insides…a dissipation
to soothe the memories
away. Some days they come.

survivor, me? 
The multi-syllabic mess of me?

You have so much to offer, 
she said, with a genuine smile.
She was a nice lady, put-together
well-dressed, dignified, attractive,
walking in heels up steps.
Grace on stilts with a syrupy lure,
to share myself…to share me?

My input, my experience
my story, my chrysalis
shed, to empower other
women who shift 
in bruised realities,
someone stealing their right
to just be without a 
price tag on their needs.

Those women are the me I used to be.

I don’t feel very empowered
Sitting here sipping tea.
The past rises, even if you
swallow it whole again and again.
Insufficient distance between us
for my Soul to rise up and fly free.


This poem was originally published by Blue Insights: Tea and Memories

Thank you for reading Tea and Memories. Be sure to sign up for my mail squad of supporters here: https://mailchi.mp/1023c412b1fb/fnf

Abysmal You

Free Verse poetry


Image by Jess Foami from Pixabay

I dream of things unspoken.
You shake me to the surface
sleepy-eyed, confused.

You might still be real.

There might still be one moment
that is mine.

My nakedness aches.
I don’t want
the gray
the shadow
the memory to absorb you.

Eyes wide and blind, I am a child,
abandoned, untethered.


Original publishing: Abysmal You

My name is Christina. I am a poet. 
:::i paint with words:::

Christina Ward is an accomplished poet, aspiring author, and columnist for the Observer News Enterprise newspaper. She earned her Bachelor of Science from Catawba College in Environmental Science which greatly influences her work. She also studied creative writing and English at Catawba. Her poetry has been published in the Cameo print literary magazine, the Arrowhead print literary magazine, Vita Brevis Poetry Magazine, and in Wolff Poetry Literary Magazine.

Circles and Stones

a free verse poem

Photo by Halanna Halila on Unsplash

You cast stones
lift your curses high,
chanting carried away,
to hide and wait for you…
its return three-fold?
I think no goddess hears you.
It is a barren place,
your circle.

It is my pleasure,
to wipe your sweet nectar from
proboscis and pen,
parts of your soul
digging into mine. (I use it!)
I abuse it, this loving that I must do.
After all, you hate the thing that feeds you.

I am Ophelia.
I will rise, collect wretched daisies
and pass them out one by one,
to gaping faces,
sterile-hearted creatures
that watch me drift downstream
and know not my spirit.

But you! Stone in hand
your anger rises, a fat red circle in the sky.
Your blacks and greys writhe
behind bulging, hollow eyes,
twist inside your vertebrae.
You light your candles fool!
You collect your symbols…
Idolatry! Curses! Hatred!

It is a barren place,
your circle.


I ran into a guy some years ago who professed to be Wiccan, but his “practice” of it was mingled with mental health issues and a gross distortion of what Wicca stands for. Please do NOT consider this poem as a blast of Wicca — it was most certainly not from that place. I am a practicing Christian — and I believe people have every right to believe and practice their faith as they wish. But any time a person is using their religion to do harm to other people — this is not ok with me.

This man heard me make a comment about missing someone I loved who had broken off a relationship with me. The individual I wrote this poem about was so angry at my comment — all I had said was that I missed someone who had meant a lot to me — and this guy lost his marbles. He began calling me all hours of the day and night (I think he thought I was interested in pursuing a relationship with him and I was NOT at all!) cursing me, cursing my name, cursing my children — saying that he had placed an actual curse on me. He then had his WIFE call me and do the same. It was terrifying. They claimed to be calling on all kinds of witchcraft to damn me. He said he was a Warlock with special powers to destroy me.

After this terrifying experience, I wrote this poem as a way to cleanse myself of the anger and fear. I wanted it to be clear that it was not a slamming of any religion or belief system — but more a fit of screaming anger at two seriously crazy people who tried to destroy my spirit. This poem was originally posted on MySpace if that tells you how long ago it was. I stumbled upon the poem today in my files and thought I’d share it. Hopefully, no one will take offense — as it was not intended to be offensive.

Interestingly — I only knew this person for TWO WEEKS!!

Thanks for reading Circles and Stones. I am grateful that poetry can be liberating and help us to heal.

Peace be with you!!

Experience “Gaerver Pond” an original, Free Verse Poem

poem by Christina Ward

Image by Kerttu Northman from Pixabay

Gaerver Pond

Evening descends, darkness crawling into
the spaces of my yard,
Leaves spin then settle into shadow.
Fall brings herself in quietly this year.

Gaerver Pond is still,
save the concentric circle
disruptions of insect and air.

Beneath a green veil
mayfly nymphs squirm and crawl.
They will be devoured, in time.

I await the same fate.

Shifting, I am tired. Memory
skips rocks across the pond.
I remember nights of skin and sweat
Loving you so completely,
I forgot to be afraid.
I remember you.

The bench steals a last grasp 
of warmth from me,
as I leave it to the chill,
the anguished memories
that live here still.


Originally published: Gaerver Pond in Literally Literary

Don’t Miss Updates on Christina’s Poetry and Book Releases!

Oh, The Nerve(s)

the night before a surgery isn’t a relaxed one

Cup, Tea, Porcelain, Drink, Decor, Break, Still Life
Pixabay, No attribution required

This one will be brief.

I’m nervous. But since I like to look for the elusive silver-lining (seriously, WHAT is a silver-lining anyway?) I thought I’d make a quick list to help me re-focus my thoughts from the nervous energy, the Prednisone coursing through me that makes me a raging meanie (currently with heartburn) and keep my mind off the dismal surgery outcomes for tomorrow.

At least I have a supportive family, who loves me (and who better do the dishes if I am sleeping )

At least my SO has already mentioned making sure we had plenty of soup in the house–perhaps he’ll feed ME!

At least if I can’t eat much i might lose weight. (Ok unlikely but I’ll even take 2 lbs if it’s a LOSS.)

At least there’s netflix.

At least this is a one-time thing!

A least there’s a chair on my front porch that I can sit in to listen to the birds–and it’s supposed to be a pretty day tomorrow!

At least I am reading a good book.

At least I start a poetry workshop on Friday!!! I won’t be able to talk but I can listen.

At least, even in fear, pushing through makes us stronger.

At least the Prednisone isn’t forever–and my family members have already devised a safety plan for themselves. (Yes, I am THAT awful on this stuff.)

At least, I know, that no matter what, God’s got me, my family’s got me, and I am tough.

At least the Gofundme raised the money I need for the surgery!

I asked Robbie “What if the nerve’s messed up and I can’t smile anymore?”

He said “Baby I’ll love you no matter what, besides you don’t smile with your mouth, you smile with your eyes.”

I am so blessed.

The Cat is a Thief

and other ramblings

My cat December…on his throne (my lap).

This morning I awoke to the terrible pain I’ve been dealing with the last few weeks and decided there just weren’t enough “soft” foods in the house.

(If you need to catch up on “why the pain?” you can do that here.)

At the store, my jaw clenched and dogged determination to get sustenance, I gathered in my cart the crucial supplies for survival when chewing is difficult: Spaghettios, Ravioli, soups, low-sodium broth for making egg drop soup (we have chickens after all,) the softest baked chips I could find (because I am quite addicted to Baked Lays) and my favorite Ranch dip.

How are you today ma’am?

I’m doing great, thank you.

The lie slid so easily from my tongue, although getting past my crooked, pursed lips it came out in a bit of a slur.

The weather was beautiful but it was hard to concentrate on that. I hauled myself and the few bags of groceries home. Too spent to make anything, I settled on the chips, the dip, and to plop myself back in front of the 37 Medium tabs of articles I had opened on the laptop to read.

Chewing — oh so carefully. Read. Highlight. Comment. Clap clap clap.

Sliiip Sliiip Sliiip Sliiiiiip…..sliiip sliiip…

The cat is licking my Ranch dip.

Sigh. *Insert your favorite expletives here.*

December is a fabulous cat.

He is pretty certain that he is a celebrity cat, although the Paparazzi has never come calling. He’d put them to work if they did.

Here, sir. Yes. You scratch there, and I’ll lick that salty amazing spot on your arm.

He is fat. Faboulous. And entitled.

Case and point:

How December helps out.

The point here?

Not to give December more credit that he is owed — and to him that is a substantial and often exhausting amount — it is to deal with this “ranch-dip-licking” disappointment in stride.

You know every day is full of its ups and downs right?

There really are those moments when you’ve done all you can think to do, taken all the BS from the world that you think you can take, and that one more thing happens.

That flat tire.

That phone call you’d been dreading.

Worse yet — the internet …goes…out.

How do you deal when you are sapped of strength, sapped of energy, sapped of the patience to handle one more thing?

Life can hand you a basket of burden but you don’t have to analyze the contents so closely that you forget to notice the sun shining down on you, a glorious day going on in spite of your burdens.

Set the basket of burdens down.

Take in the sun. Feel the breeze lightly across your cheeks — and deal with the contents one at a time.

  • Is there something I could have done to avoid this?
  • Now that it is here, how can I handle this with a measure of grace?
  • Is there a way to diffuse the situation without making the problem worse?
  • Can I deal with this a bit better if I’d just take a deep, cleansing breath and steady my resolve?

Burdens are only burdensome if we forget these are just temporary things that we can manage carefully, with our emotion in check. Keep the Negative Nancy that’s raging in your mind strapped to a chair. She does not own you. And if you tell her to be quiet, she will often listen.

Thanks for reading this “a-day-in-the-life-of” and take some time today to share the ranch dip with your cat.

After all — the cat is happy!

My Son’s Stepmother Passed, and I am a Weepy Mess

One would think this wouldn’t affect me so, but it is complicated how our hearts handle death.

My son is in his upper twenties now, but I look back on his childhood days with a grateful, yet sometimes guilty heart. There were tough days sprinkled in with the rambunctious adventures of my firstborn. His father, Danny, and I divorced when he was just a toddler.

Danny and I fought like cats and dogs, pardon the cliche. But it was rather terrible. A grand stress in a very difficult situation. We had very different ideas about what was “ok” for our son, and what was NOT.

Insert Beverly here.

Danny met Beverly when my son was just a toddler, still, and my first impressions were, well, they are odd. Danny had been dating a LOT and this woman was nothing remotely like the young, loud-mouthed, “street-wise” messes he’d been parading by in two-week near-marital then crashing relationships.

Dragging my toddler right along with him to meet these “new mommies.”

Until Beverly. She was much older than him, very quiet, and very present. Suddenly she was there. And my toddler boy, a raging ball of happiness and energy and mischief, had a motherly presence when he was at his father’s.

When the fights between Danny and I arose; it was Beverly that took the phone, spoke calmly, always had a loving response to my fury, and stood strong in difficult moments. When there was bad news, it was often Beverly that called me. When there were concerns about my son, Beverly and I often had these conversations.

Her peaceful presence was a blessing to us all.

Now, Beverly was not a perfect person; she had her flaws of gullibility, sometimes accepting things that were not healthy or good, because she saw and loved the good in everyone. Sometimes her passivity was too much, but I respected her for her kindness and her intention.

The diagnosis of cancer, very aggressive and progressed, came less than a month ago…and now she is gone.

Yesterday at noon, this kind, compassionate, ever-present woman in my son’s life, the wife of my ex-husband (we are now friends and get along beautifully–the difficulties of raising a child together now over), mother, grandmother, and quiet, sweet-spirited woman, took her last breath riddled with cancer cells and weakness.

And I have been weepy.

She treated me with kindness, love, and compliments–even when I was unlovable.

She changed my sons diapers, bathed him, worried over him, attended with me his graduation–and for her love for my son, I am grateful.


I wish I had been there
to see you reaching out
wooden fingers
An empty casket arm
trying to bridge the space
Between your brokenness
and His glory.


I am glad He took your hand.
Your dust swept away…
may black-winged birds be light
and quick with your soul!

He’s been waiting for you.

–From In Memoriam, Christina Ward

My blessings, prayers, thoughts, tears are with my son today as he mourns his second mother, and for Danny, who very deeply mourns his wife and perfect partner today.

And I am weepy.

Hug your loved ones–and tell them what you love about them. Time is precious.

Yikes Y’all, The Spring Hell is HERE

Bring on the Ailments, the sunshine, the mouse, and the broken clock!

Brown and White Bear Plush Toy
https://www.pexels.com/photo/brown-and-white-bear-plush-toy-42230/



Just to be clear, I am not a hundred percent sure what day it is, and that is just being completely honest. I know that my boyfriend took me to the emergency room and that we were there for an extended period of time and got home very late last night.

I was certain that clock on the wall in that tiny ER room was broken…no WAY it was nearly 11 pm…no WAY! I thought it was in the afternoon. When Robbie told me what time it was I argued with him and laughed at him.

My face felt fuzzy. We were there because on Easter Sunday I had started to have trouble walking. The entire left side of my body is numb, limp and it’s affecting my walking. I also feel fuzzy-headed, a bit confused. BP up. Potassium low. CT scan normal. They ordered neuro-follow-up (finally) to rule out MS. Fun times huh?

The helicopter was awesome! I have never seen one of those things so close up. The propeller spins so fast but when you try to video it the blade looks like it is turning so slowly. That is so bizarre to me. They were there to pick up a patient. The landing pad was right outside the lobby.

I video-ed the helicopter for the grand babies—who are at their home right now—who missed Easter with the family at my Mom’s because the have Hand Foot and Mouth Disease!! Ugh. My poor babies 😦

SO I was at the hospital TERRIFIED because I have an anxiety few people know about–I am mildly emetophobic. That is the fear of vomit or vomiting. So you can imagine a trip to the ER is difficult for me. We were there for almost 10 hours. I survived it. It was hard. Hard.

Come home to my daughter. And. My. Son. VOMITING.

And they have both now been sick for going on 15 hours. I drove my wobbly ass to the store today and bought Lysol, soup, Pepto, and crackers and have been giving them water and Pepto (the ONLY thing they can keep down) while keeping at arms length and washing my hands and spraying the hell out of everything with Lysol.

And they have been TROOPERS. Not ONE complaint. I feel so bad for them…they’ve been SO sick.

Oh the mouse??

Yes, my son, the father of the beautiful baby girl and toddler boy with Hand Foot and Mouth? Caught a mouse today…was the bewildered victim of their large and playful dog Ollie who captured the poor critter coming out of the laundry room today…I am sure after the week they have had over there with two sick small children and no sleep…that it was the comic relief they all needed.

WE COULD SURE USE SOME COMIC RELIEF OVER HERE.

Thank you my loyal readers for allowing me these brief moments of venting over the woes of my last few days. I hope the stomach bug has passed by your house and you and yours are not dealing with any sicknesses. My current issues are many as I deal with the issue in my neck, awaiting a chiropractor visit next week, an ortho visit in a month, and a neurologist visit (if I can even afford to go) soon to see if I have MS. The bone spur and disc issue in my neck and the nerve that is going haywire in my face is causing me a lot of pain and the whatever that is causing my left side of my body to not work right is really scary. But at least they have ruled out a stroke. Health issues are very upsetting and can dominate your thoughts, keeping you from being there for your family in the way that you want to be. And now I am ruminating–forgive me.

Many blessings to you…have a wonderful night. I am going to head over to my https://medium.com/fiddleheads-floss account and post some updates there….till next time fiddleheads!!

~~Christina