When Candles Flicker


Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ✧ An Angel Moment In Romancing the Flames© fantasy “When Candles Flicker,” the reader is left to interpret who this Old FireLighter is that comforts the hero or heroine in distress, who quenches the flames, who whispers the answers… DreamSculptr ღ™


When Candles Flicker…

He sits in wait
Til  I doth fry
And softly cry
And stew, anticipating
…My grief regurgitating

Then out he takes
His match, to ply
The spark of life:
A phantom strife
A fiery seed of iffy thought,
…For my imagination

As pith takes fire
And flames jump up
In hallowed sight
My soul calls out
‘It  seems to me like I’m in flight!’
…To my abomination


Sit me down
Upon the hearth
Where I reflect
Why am I here?
Who brought me to this battle station?
…Of anxious confrontation

Flames jump, rising
Roaring upward
Comfort bringers
Cleansing healers
Winter snow ceasing, outward bound!
…Releasing agitation

Flames now crackle
Whispered answers
“Bring  thee to my
Comfort  humble”
Long live ye, old FireLighter
…My cares evaporating…



Seventh in the Romancing the Flames© series for my romantic friends…

DreamSculptr ღ™ Poetry series is by Carolyn Tody © 9/11/2014. All rights reserved.



The Old FireLighter sends answers whispering through the flames to comfort those in distress.






BLISS  Ϡ₡ ·.¸¸.·´¯`·.¸¸Ϡ₡ Ϡ₡


Bliss is somewhere on the horizon

resting comfortably

under a smoky veil of fruitful imagination

finding the secret corners of a privately insular world

unlocking new dimensions of mutual embrace

unfurling love’s blossoming tendril.


Now is the Age of Creative Bliss

watching wild nature  

unfolding dazzling displays of verdant vegetation

living in the divine moment where a newborn brings pleasure

finding the precious present rich with inspiration

restoring a loving heart to compassion.


Bliss is enjoying the State of Seclusion

erasing pale monotony

endowing commonplace days with extraordinary grace

sailing beside undulating waves both sun-kissed and sapphire

dancing barefoot on a rolling teak windjammer deck

kissing the colorful Caribbean.


Bliss is sharing enlightened awareness

revealing ancient wisdom

learning how to converse with true blessedness

watching breezy leaves flutter to music of flutes, violins

and fireworks following magical paintings well done

soaring in harmonious circles.


Overall, Bliss is just being alive

Near lively faeries

hiding in landscapes and palm-laden climates of islands

drifting to sleep on healing rainbows of gentle therapeutic touch

watching children blossom and wild nature explode

… as snowflakes drift by my window.


Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵Ʒ ✧  ‘Bliss’ is a bit of poetic imagery from the depths of philosophical imagination, which often arrives unexpectedly, in moments characterized by spiritual joy, inspiration, and happiness.

A blissful moment arose for me last week as I painted the picture above in a watermedia class led by a gallery owner.  I took the class to refresh long unused skills. Using paints and brushes must be like riding a bike. We never forget how, we just need to remove that layer of rust, that cocoon protecting the latent skill.

Abstract was the theme that day, red, white, and blue the only colors allowed. I felt fragile and very uncreative. As I painted, she stood, looked across the table at my painting in progress and gasped audibly. The room stood at attention. “Maybe you’d better stop right there!” she said. “This has great depth.” Later she added, “Would you frame it to hang in our new show?”

For a minute I stared, stunned, still planning to play with colors. Then a blissful feeling seeped into my heart. I had never pursued having my paintings hung in a gallery before. I had much better artwork at home, but the gallery owner loved my painting! Unconditional acceptance of one’s ‘art’ (as found in the ‘heart’) from a popular painter was quite a compliment. I didn’t think as much of the painting because I am used to creating more detail. I’ve only done three abstracts in my life. Yet, this was a blissful moment, characterized by spiritual joy and inspiration.

Yesterday, I realized I needed to create a title. To do so I asked friends, who saw various themes in the abstract:  ‘Poppies by the riverbank,’ ‘Birth and rebirth,’ ‘Asiatic lilies among the Grapevines’ (a tribute to my rampant garden), and ‘A Big Kiss.’

I framed the picture in pewter and hung it at the gallery. The owner entitled it ‘Bliss’ and requested to hang a copy of this poetry in the next space, insisting that such a good design can hang in any direction. I don’t know if anyone else wants it, but I rose to the invitational challenge ~ and accomplishment brings bliss.


 Sixth in the Romancing the Flames series for romantic friends…
Adapted 6/23/2013 from a version published 2012 in “Voices”
by Carolyn Tody © all rights reserved.

‘Ermine and Black Leather ♥ Gabrielle’s Song’ ~ DreamSculptr ღ™


Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ✧ An Angel Moment In Romancing the Flames© ballroom dance fantasy “Ermine and Black Leather,” an aging dancer enters the ballroom apprehensively, finding herself emboldened as her philosophical cocoon drops away to reveal the music, friends, poetry, inspiration, and new prospects for spiritual relationships that reinvent and reshape her dream DreamSculptr ღ™


Ermine and Black Leather ♥ Gabrielle’s Song

Vintage Siberian ermine
wraps my shimmering bare shoulder
The furry white cloud lands at my feet, leaving me a bit colder
rendering me a shade bolder
I whirl into a mêlée erupting on the polished teak dance floor
tugging on my raven bodice of crystalline turquoise décor…

A sleek feather mask
covered in freshwater pearls blazing
conceals my face from
strangers’ strident ballroom gazing
lacking a warm celebrity praising
Tonight I’m choosing my own dance partner for a masquerade
as handsome friend Jonah walks into the high-flung promenade.

An emerald sport coat
accents Jonah’s dark tan masculinity
“Yo, Mister Peacock. Care for a spin?” I drool, viewing his virility
and loathing his conceited proclivity
“Shore, Blackbird; tell me, how to melt your icy esprit de corps?”
“Preening feathers, Jonah? With kindness, it’s a musical score.”

Jonah finesses like a Jazz King
spins me, whirling into a sizzling Swing
With frantic twirls, kicks, and cuddles he ignites my heart to blazing

adrenalin is pumping, ears ringing
Faces blur into backlit clouds, fiery ginger flames rise ever higher
My flashing feet take wing and my hair tingles trying to catch fire.

Jonah shudders, halts mid air
though reluctant to relinquish, he stares
then staggers out an open door careening heavily over patio stairs
arrogance driving his conceited airs
ranting and wailing through a new prickly potted cactus paramour
while I continue dancing, oblivious to menacing tilt on the dance floor.

Dancers run from a creature
hidden as rising platforms draw together
A figure appears, wrapped entirely in sensuous soft black leather
not altogether good for hot weather
clinging to musculature like a sacred Selkie skin rugged and brash
whirling at me through mist while snare drums roar, cymbals crash.

Soaring trombones surrender
to the vibrant sway of tremulous violins
My handkerchief hemline dances furiously, levitating silken skin
spinning in place under his grin
Offers me the Holy Grail of Eternal Youth overflowing his flask
I shrink noticeably as he consumes my appearance sans mask.

Breathless, he draws me inside
deeply embracing my fine wordless feather
waltzes me out to sea sporting harmonious and melodic tether
willing arms link, locking eyes together
Floats me down a lazy southern river, regal and allowably proud
whisks me onto a makeshift raft soaring high o’er stormy clouds.

“Alone together at last, Gabrielle”
he whispers, nibbling a stimulated earlobe
I cannot believe an exciting Dionysian god adores my wardrobe
desiring my fondly affectionate strobe
His sultry voice draws me to a far-flung vineyard within dreams
my rebellious, ready heart humming a passionate Opus Extreme.

With an underhand turn, he whips
the elegant nightclub into high-stepping frenzy
I flip head over heels and slide across the dance floor on bent knees
as he launches his scintillating appeal
“How about Argentine Tango, Milady?” begs my daring dark knight
“Anytime,” I pant. “Dear, darling Richard, shall we wait ‘til tonight?



Fifth in the Romancing the Flames© series for my romantic friends…
Original work based loosely on a fictional short story performed live in February 2013
DreamSculptr ღ™ Poetry series by Carolyn Tody © 6/12/2013. All rights reserved.


~♥~ Ballroom dancing is easy to love. This elegant sport requires more footwork than most freestyle dances, carrying the potential for a vigorous workout with a sense of soaring through the air in partial symbiosis with another person. https://www.facebook.com/Carolyn.Tody.Author,   http://cactusrose.wordpress.com/

Amore ♥ Love Is


Amore Love Is


Love is what happens when my spirit touches you

and you, in turn, reach into my own

tracing my soul with your heart


Love happens when hopes and dreams come true

and positive influence comes our way

repaying passion its due


Love is a magical language, one the deaf can hear

a dialect that even a cripple can dance

syntax the blind can see


Love is a portal key that opens the infinite life force

It is a ‘Oneness’ without separation

Adoring affection, sans fear


Love resides in the doorway to a woman’s heart

not only in clothing, figure or hair

but in her beautiful eyes


Love reads the blueprint of Heaven’s yearning heart

building bridges from burning desire

dreaming by candlelight


Love for you will always persist in my soul everlasting

where a soft whisper echoes forever

your gift of a lingering kiss


Love is the passing whisper of spiritual wisdom

newly awakening a faltering heart

with tender understanding


Love endows a soul with compassionate feeling

this is why humankind sacrifices

and must ever remember

to embrace



Fourth in the Romancing the Flames series for my romantic friends…

A DreamSculptr Poetry series by Author and DreamSculptr Carolyn Tody © 5/29/2013. All rights reserved.

Adapted from its namesake published in “Voices”

Romancing the Flames is a portion of the DreamSculptr blog at http://cactusrose.wordpress.com/


I wrote Amore to celebrate the life of a very special man. As his existence drew to a close our children and I held his hands, watching him reluctantly slip beyond and bathed in this tremendous love he felt for each of us. I also dedicate this to two additional friends who departed this very day and week…



Playing To Me, Cello





Playing to me, Cello, inspire a mood…
make it rich, provocative, deep and inviting


Reveal the whereabouts of my unassuming lover
Whose undulating waves pique a soulful hunger

End his hesitation, my shyness, imperceptible heat
Translate fiery mysteries incomplete, bittersweet


a well-trod bridge
beckons Cello’s waves across
flowing through lacy window curtains
setting my hopeful heartstrings to soaring
over and through this hot, raging river,
the splendid moat enclosing
a royally regal, right


my wintry feet
glide together and follow…
crossing the span between, watching
as hands open a dim, weathered annex.
You beckon and smile, to my heartfelt joy
of cello mounting its rising crescendo
bestowing on me a precious gift,
transforming two lovers
rushing to embrace

…Carolyn J. Tody


 Third in the Romancing the Flames series for my romantic friends…

A DreamSculptr Poetry series by Author and DreamSculptr Carolyn Tody © 4/30/2013.  All rights reserved.

Extensively adapted from its namesake published in “Small Towns: A Map in Words”

Romancing the Flames is a portion of the DreamSculptr blog at  http://cactusrose.wordpress.com/



♥ Cello ~ Inspired by following my long held dream to create a closer tie with the whole theme park experience. This incident happened barely months after simultaneously smashing the glass ceiling into Professional Development and quaking in a Sargasso Sea of broken hearts. You might call this a reset button. When the massive Orlando Disney resort invited me to Florida, I managed to arrange an educational leave from my professional career in Michigan and find a realtor to help sever ties on property keeping me emotionally tied to the past. As luck would have it, I landed in Olde World Antiques in the Magic Kingdom Liberty Square, staring directly across a bridge at the castle whenever my seminar schedule ended. Visitors often mistook me for one of the little dolls lining the Annex wall, while men frequently spent an hour or more chatting with me during quiet times. This experience lasted only a few months. Even so, the window beside me with its lacy curtains nearly drove me crazy with a desire to be let out of ‘prison’ into the sunshine and resume my life. Here, new dreams arose. I began to write. DreamSculpting was born. Coaching came naturally and spellbound coworkers spun away to follow their dreams. Memories too indelible to erase subsided. Cellos joined my musical collection. Moonbeams skipped across the bridge and whispered sweet songs in my ear, their promises carrying me back into mundane life considerably enlightened… and to this very day, just a little wistful at the sound of a cello. ♥ C

Where Are You?


Were I a flower growing wild and free
I would wish to portray camaraderie
shivery leaves


Where Are You?


Where are you love, O cherished one
who comes a friend, remains enmeshed
are you a figment?
or do you breathe,
a vulnerable soul in warm, solid flesh?

You are still deep inside, you know
where you can’t elude an unconscious flow
you mean too much
to forget and forego
far within where flaming hot embers glow.

Should you doze amid passionate lullabies,
dream on, sweet one, resist Cupid’s sigh
Your never-ending
romantic yearnings
electrify visions of promising heavenly skies.

Your closeness is visible and touchingly open
liquid, deepening, fresh and ever-changing.
With cellophane walls
framing sweet sacred halls
shimmering as severed dreams begin singing.

Hidden under sparkling image-rich sleep
touching your temple, removing its tension
transforming a sparkle
brushing it into your eye
awake, my sleepyhead, ending misapprehension.


 Second in the Romancing the Flames series for romantic friends

Poetry series by Carolyn Tody © 4/30/201.  All rights reserved.

Adapted from “Where are You” as first published 2008 in “Small Towns: A Map in Words”




Only In Dreams


Only In Dreams

If only in my dreams, sweetheart

we’ll lie by the flames and share

the best cuisine our life offers

then we’ll lie on a flying carpet

soaring o’er spectacular hills

… through a starlit, wintry night.


We’ll need no other warmth, just

radiant smiles and fiery sweet souls

embracing with warm, trembling arms

mesmerizing sheep scattering below

scrambling stars granting wishes above

… illuminating a world of love


Now fireplace embers are slowly dying

as we fly back into the darkened room

angel wings flap, a melting of snow

shaking, shuddering, faces highlighted

stoking new life into sputtering flames

… hopeful hearts a’blazing


© 2013 by Author and DreamSculptr Carolyn Tody 4/18/2013.  All rights reserved.

Recently adapted from “Fireside Nights,” published 2010 in “Seasons of Life”