Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Poetry Wednesday: Phenomenal Woman

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
m not cute or built to suit a fashion model's size
But when I start to tell them,They think I'm telling lies.
I say,It's in the reach of my arms
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I'm a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It's the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I'm a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

Men themselves have wondered
What they see in me.
They try so much
But they can't touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them
They say they still can't see.
I say,
It's in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I'm a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

Now you understand
Just why my head's not bowed.
I don't shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It's in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,the palm of my hand,
The need of my care,
'Cause I'm a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

~Maya Angelou

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Finally Finished The Lost Symbol

I know it’s been a while, but yes it did take me this long to read The Lost Symbol – partly because I’ve been busy with work but mostly because it was not the page-turner I thought it would be. As a thriller, it is quite predictable. If you’ve read more than one Dan Brown book, you can tell his writing is quite formulaic. However, I found that The Da Vinci Code and Angels and Demons were much more intriguing, thought-provoking, and fast-paced. The Lost Symbol started out the same, but somewhere along the way the plot failed to maintain my attention. The underlying themes and message were quite profound but their delivery was not as powerful as they are in his other books.

In The Lost Symbol, Langdon is quickly caught up in an adventure from the very beginning as usual. This time, his lifelong friend, Peter Solomon, and his family are central to the narrative. Peter is a Freemason of the highest degree and harbors the organization’s most captivating secrets. His sister, Katherine, is a scientist who is secretly conducting experiments on Noetic Science – the study and explorations of the nature and potential power of the mind ( its consciousness, soul, and spirit). However, he and his family are under attack by a lone perpetrator who seeks to reveal the secrets of the Masons and destroy Katherine’s research. Sounds interesting, right? It is! But extraneous dialogue, excessive descriptions, and irrelevant character development all detract from the central storyline instead of developing a sense of suspense.

In the end, the ultimate message is that much of what is written in the Bible is a celebration of the human mind and the potential that humans can achieve when they use their mind to its fullest potential. It is about the untapped power of the human mind and the collective unconscious of humanity. It is about how science and religion can eventually coexist - a common theme throughout Dan Brown's works. This can happen not so much by having blind faith but simply by changing one’s perspective.

While not my favorite Dan Brown novel, I still recommend The Lost Symbol to fans of The Da Vinci Code or Angels and Demons.

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