“Not a moment to say good-bye”

I saw a sorrowful sight yesterday……..no, not the suffering of animals in Irma or Harvey’s path.   I have seen too many of those to count, each one like the jab of a sharp dagger.

No, yesterday’s was subtle…….not very apparent unless you happened to catch it with your eyes.   Most didn’t, most were texting, listening to earphones, reading electronic devices…………..

I was at the hospital, in the surgical waiting room.   It was full.   Among the people, sat a father with two children, I would estimate late teens, early twenties.

The son had his knee in a brace, was holding on to another brace in his hands.   When the attendant called him in to the back for surgery, he got up, walked a couple of steps, then turned his head around and looked at his sister, giving her a slight wave.   She never looked up, she was busy on her device, texting letters and scrolling the screen.   How sad……….

Going in that back room is scary, no matter how slight the procedure……….anesthesia is tricky………this is always a risk.

I don’t know how the young man did…….I hope well……….for both his and his sister’s sake, who couldn’t spare a moment to say goodbye.



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“A Grasp on Things”

Yesterday, I went shopping in my local market.   There was a gentleman there, in the pet food aisle, struggling to put sizable bags of birdseed into his cart.  He didn’t have hands, he had metal claws, for want of a better word.   Not the fancy prosthetics designed today; these were the metal appendages of earlier times.   His cart was already filled with several large bags of wild birdseed, here he was, struggling to grasp one more.

My husband turned to me when we got in the next aisle and said, “Did you see that?”  “Yes,” I answered.  I had seen him times before in the market; his metal hands deftly handling money at the register.

In silence, my husband and I both drank in what we had seen.   My husband, I am sure, felt empathy.   He is always first to say, can I help you get that down from the shelf…….But this time, he kept silent.   I suppose we don’t want the other person to feel incapable, when really they show how superior they are when compared to us.

Me, I felt the love, the attachment to the animals.   In a world of human stares, human pity,  the birds sang in his garden for him, not a man with metal hands, but a man who feeds them lovingly each day.

When the world is mean, so many of us turn to them.   Those who sing, bark, purr……not those who stare and judge.

Even in the darkest of mornings……a bird sings, knowing the light will followdove reiki…………I am donating all profits of all of my books to the animals hurt by the path of Harvey.  Please visit Amazon ……..type in Shirl Knobloch and see all my books.  Help me help those who have brightened my life with song, barks, and purrs………..




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“Donations for the Animals”

Those who follow my blog each day,  I am donating 100%, every penny, of my personal profits to help animals in the aftermath of Harvey during this time of such immense tragedy.

Please SHARE my blog post, SHARE my books.   Let me help those who inspired me to write so many of my stories…….

Thank you.


I have chosen the Best Friends Animal Society Harvey Relief Fund and the Houston Humane Society to contribute funds …..


https://www.amazon.com/Shirl-Knobloch/e/B00OEW2XJQ/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0Profile pic

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“Always check the wheel….words of advice for all mice lovers”

If you read my blogs, you know I have a pet mouse.  Having a mouse has made me realize the intelligence these tiny beings possess.   Each morning, my Blaze comes to the rungs of his cage and sticks out his tiny nose and mouse paws at this strange creature singing Good Morning……….okay, it’s for the corn muffin or pancake treat that comes with his morning vegetable or fruit.

The one worry of anyone who owns a mouse is his escaping.    Blaze’s cage needs to be cleaned every couple of days……..mice have their own particular “aroma”…..it can be quite pungent……to put it nicely…….I call him stinky  :-).

Anyway, after years of caring for small beings like dwarf hamsters, I have come up with a pretty good method, which I thought fool proof.  Until this morning.  I have a large plastic bin, which I put Blaze’s entire cage inside, then I open the cage, let him out to roam the bin (which he cannot climb out of) and clean the cage.   The clean cage is then lowered back into the bin, careful not to squash mouse feet or other personal parts, and then, when he climbs inside, I attach the top on again.        Easy……right?

Well today, my husband lifted the cage out of my bin…….cleaning a mouse cage is a two human procedure.  I asked alarmingly, “Where’ the mouse!!!”   Blaze had been in his wheel when my husband lifted him….about five feet off the ground, to place him back on the table…..Blaze was now out of the wheel, thank God he kept inside on his high ferris wheel ride, and was now leisurely roaming the top of my table, chewing on the tablecloth.  How do you lift a mouse cage off the table with no bottom……that was the problem.   How do we safely get him back in the large plastic bin?

“Wait,” I shouted.  ” Let’s think about this”……..as my husband attempted to slide the bottom under the top …….a mouse can sneak through the tiniest of openings……I was fearful Blaze would escape and run right off the table…….

“I know,” I proceeded………” I will place his corn muffin crumb in the wheel, he will go back inside, then you can quickly slide on the bottom.”

Well, Blaze decided he was going to place his head in the wheel and chew, with his bottom and paws firmly planted on the tablecloth.

“Let me get a cup,” I suggested.   My dwarf hamsters always climbed in cups.   Blaze wasn’t having any part of the cup trickery.

Finally, after five minutes of stress, we got him safely inside, where he happily commenced chewing on his muffin crumb.

My advice to all mouse owners………always check the wheel………….


Shirl and BlazeBreakfast.jpg

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“Just not right”………turning away a life in a storm because it has fur……….

There is a face in the news today……..reporters like to take photographs of faces, faces in anguish……it makes for a good story.

Nothing says suffering like capturing the face of someone crying over the ruins of their home, devastated by a tornado…….

Today’s face was just as powerful.

It was the face of a young mother, her child at her side, her furry child wrapped in a blanket in her arms……..

It was the face of hope turned suddenly into despair.    It was the face of someone who had walked in a flood zone, bringing her family to a place of shelter and being told that one member of her family could not come inside……..

People look on in disbelief at the photos of dogs left chained in the yard with flood waters rising around them……….people look on in disbelief as a photo of a dog carrying a big bag of dog food goes viral across the nation……….

We criticize those who leave their pets behind; we find fault with those whose pets have been able to escape during times of crisis………

But do we help those who only try to find sanctuary for a loved one??????????

Yes, believe me, I know rescue teams have their hands full saving human lives…….my dad once saved the lives of teen age boys when the Passaic River flooded in New Jersey….

Would it be so wrong to deny a tiny dog wrapped in a blanket in his human mom’s arms entrance to a place of safe haven…….

So many of them didn’t make it a door ……any door, welcoming or not…………..

I pray for them,


Here is the news link……..




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“Think about this today”

Now, Gone with the Wind is the target…….You may read the link below, the screenings of this legendary film canceled.

I wonder how many who protest this movie know the whole story of the woman who wrote this book…….

For that is history……..knowing the whole story, not just the part told in one textbook,  or conveyed by one director on to the movie screen……

Margaret Mitchell helped so many blacks during her life.   It is thought 70-80 young black doctors who graduated Morehouse College received their education because of her, a secret kept decades after her death.   This woman opened doors closed to those who walked through and made a change in the world…….

An American Red Cross hospital ship was outfitted by her monetary donation during the WWII as well.

The Junior League of Atlanta blackballed her because she wanted to do “league work” in medical clinics used by blacks.

This was a time of segregation…..help she gave had to be kept secret.  But Margaret helped, without others knowing, except those who sought her help.

When Gone With the Wind won best film in Atlanta,  Hattie McDaniel, who won best supporting actress, couldn’t attend the premiere.  She couldn’t sit at the awards table with white actors.

When Mitchell got “wind” of this, excuse the play on words….she wrote Miss McDaniel.  That letter began a correspondence of many more over the following years.

So, we ban her movie…….what next, take her novel off the bookshelves……..This woman, who did so much to help in a time when such help could have brought harm to herself if discovered…………..

History is knowing the full story……..

We should all think about this TODAY……Not tomorrow, when it may be too late………if  we close too many doors of history.




Here is the news link that precipitated this blog post

Theater cancels ‘Gone With the Wind’ screening: Film ‘insensitive’

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“Words from the Grave” Remembering Edgar Lee Masters Today.

Today’s literary homage goes to Edgar Lee Masters….born on this day in 1869.
Those minds familiar with his name will instantly conjure images of Spoon River.
This was his masterpiece….Spoon River Anthology.
He derived inspiration from a collection of ancient Greek poems; which just reinforces the truth that lives, no matter what town, no matter what century, share the same basic sorrows, disappointments, scars, and dreams.
Spoon River is told from the grave……the graves of Spoon River.
Without frills or embellishments, each resident lifts the veil of death that has concealed much in life……
You cannot read Spoon River without pondering one’s own life and legacy……
I have gone to a couple of performances of Spoon River Anthology at Green-Wood Cemetery, in NY.
The performance takes place among the graves; lit lanterns cast an eerie glow to ghostly faces as the words of each life are spoken.
Few words, then the residents retreat back to silent graves……but their echoes forever change a viewer and reader’s life.
Most read Spoon River in English class. I think all of us should revisit this town, as we grow older. It is then that we can fully appreciate its relevance.

“I tramped through the country
To get the feeling
That I was not a separate thing from the earth.
I used to lose myself
By lying with eyes half-open in the woods.
Sometimes I talked with animals…”
― Edgar Lee Masters, Spoon River Anthology


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