Tag Archives: writing

The glory of God’s Kingdom

I’ve seen the glory of God’s Kingdom,

walked golden streets in my dream,

listened to angels sweetly singing,

sheltered safe beside a quiet stream.

 

I saw lions and lambs frolic in green pastures,

watched mankind’s children, and cobras at their play.

When I heard our Him so gently speaking,

awed and  humbled, I fell upon my knees to pray.

 

Peace and love overflow the Holy city.

There is shelter for all beneath His mighty wings.

All who know of God’s goodness love and praise Him,

and to His everlasting glory sing.

 

I’ve seen the glory of God’s Kingdom.

Oh how I wish that I could stay.

Perhaps if I love and obey Him,

He will ask me to come back some day.

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Filed under A poem for the people, Literary, Literature

Keeper of the Sword

The following is an excerpt from my novel, “Keeper of the Sword,” which is in rewrite mode at the present. I hope to have it uploaded to smashwords with in a couple of weeks. I wil keep you posted.

“Josh, Josh dear, it’s time for supper.”

Josh struggled awake, sat up, looked around for his book, and found it lying half-open on the floor. He picked it up and placed it on the bed, “I’m not very hungry mom.”

“You need to eat something,” green eyes misted over. “I made a chocolate pudding for desert. Do you want me to fix you a tray and bring it to your room?”

“No thanks,” he flashed a grin. “As soon as I wash, I’ll come down and have supper with you. Having company while I eat will be nice.”

She smiled the worried smile that only a mother can, hugged him, kissed his forehead, “See you downstairs.”

After helping to wash and dry the supper dishes, Josh watched TV with his mom until nine, returned to his room and booted up his computer. Gramps still wasn’t online. No email from him either.

He took a shower, went to bed, fell asleep as soon as his head settled on a pillowcase, smelling faintly of lilacs, and drifted into a strange dream. A boy about ten years old lay under a tall tree, crying.   High above him, four big birds, black wings folded, cyan heads flashing iridescent blues, purples and greens in the moonlight pouring through rents in the heavy clouds, kept sharp eyes on the child.

The largest of the birds spoke in a hushed husky voice, “Poor young princeling, first his mother was poisoned, and now his father the King has been brutally murdered.”

Another one grumbled, “We can’t take proper care of him. He needs to be with his own kind.”

“Besides,” growled a third, it was as close to a growl as a bird can come, “We have our own younglings to tend to.”

The fourth one asked, “What are we then to do?” If no one tends to him he’ll die, and we can’t let that happen because he’s King now.”

The large bird answered, “He’s far too young for us to take him back to the castle because his enemies will kill him.”

“I know, I know, I know what to do,” shouted the fourth one.   The other three spoke at once, “Well, tell us.”   “We can take him deep into the forest where the old man and old woman live. They don’t have younglings of their own. They’ll tend to him and give him their love.”

“That’s a good plan,” the others said, “We’ll guide him on his journey when the sun wakes, but we can’t tell them who he is.”

Josh’s dream changed, and now he looked down into an old hut. Four men, two with short grey beards, looking old enough to be his great-grandfather, a third, dressed in mottled grey and green, and a forth, sporting a shamrock-green hat, adorned with a long blue feather, sat around a table looking like the slightest sneeze  would make it collapse.

The man with the hat asked, “How am I to find my way?”

One of the old ones reached under the table and lifted up a leather bag. He took out a black stone with a bright blue light lancing out of one side. “This is the seeing stone of Kings. Sometimes it is called the finding stone, and it will guide you to where the two who are spoken of in the prophecy wait.”

Away in the distance, carried by the breath of the wind came the skirling of a single bagpipe, wailing a mournful dirge, reminding Josh of his great-grandfather, Donald McDonald. For a moment, he saw the old man standing on hillside, silhouetted against the ruins of a castle, a kilt, bearing the tartan of the clan McDonald flapping around skinny legs, his dark eyes, eyes that always flashed when the Stuart’s were mentioned, fixed on the setting sun.

Over the tune, so familiar yet so strange came a voice, sweet, poignant, brushed with an Irish lilt, whispering at first, growing louder, filling him with an aching, a longing to go on board the great black ship she sang about. He held his breath in the depths of his dream, trying to burn each word, each haunting trill of the voice into his memory.

“In the moonlight gleaming/the Uniaedean rests, dreaming. Sails furled, captain sleeping/no one is watch guard keeping. Anchor set, gentle wind blowing, the great black ship dreams of going/to a mysterious, distant land/guided true by her captain’s hand. Awake, awake, loud voice calling. War drums beat/flaming arrows falling. In fear Uniaedean awakens, shudders from deep wounds taken/looks long at moonlight gleaming/then returns to her dreaming.”

The men faded, the hut, and the words the men spoke faded , all the words of the song, except Uniaeden faded, but the aching caused by the voice lingered on, filling his dream with sadness, and he wept for the loss of the sweetness of the moment.

He stirred in his sleep, tossed, turned, and before he woke, a ship sailed into view. How proud and bold she looked, with her black prow cleaving through tall white topped waves like a scimitar slicing through soft lard. Her black sails filled with wind, struggling to free themselves from the ropes binding them, and a fiery-eyed black stallion figurehead, pawing the air with silver shod hooves, glinting in the moonlight, seeming to urge the ship forward, ever forward.

Closer, closer came the horse and ship, closer until he made out the name Uniaedean on the ship’s side. The raised silver and turquoise letters glowing in the moonlight seemed to be surrounded by an unearthly blue and silver flame.   For a moment, he stood on the prow, looking over rippling muscled flanks, over the broad back, out between the black stallion’s pointed ears, and heard a man call, in a gruff voice, “Trim the sails, hard to starboard,” over the cracking of sails, the rushing of the wind.

Salt spray splashing onto his face, soaking his clothes, stinging his eyes, cooled his fevered brow. His heart thudded like he’d just finished a ten-mile run, his throat tightened, he held his breath. Ahead of him, mist gathering up from the sea, spread out over the distant shore, swirling through strange looking trees, sweeping up towards far off snow covered mountains, not hiding the land, but adding a mystical fairy like quality to it.

He blinked sea water from his eyes, and stood on the shore, filled with longing, filled with a need to be onboard her, and as the last bit of dark sail slipped over the horizon, the voice, the sweet voice whispered to him once more.

He woke, sweat soaked, shivering, sat up, wiped tears from his eyes and tried to remember the voice, the words to the song, but the only thing remaining of his dream was the great black ship, and the fear and excitement of seeing her flying before the wind.

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Filed under Adventure, fantasy, Fantasy Story, fiction, sory

I will always remember

Saturday, the twenty-sixth of May, I had the privilege of attending the fifty-fifth anniversary celebration of the Lockerby Legion. As I sat there enjoying good fellowship among new friends, and old, an excellent meal, a few cold beers, and great entertainment, I took a little time to reflect on the ones who made, not only the amazing evening possible, but my freedom, and the freedom of every Canadian as well.

I owe our brave and gallant soldiers everything I have, for without their great sacrifice, I would not have the freedom to enjoy anything. I can do nothing for those whom have gone beyond the mysterious dark veil, but remember them, but I can speak out for the maimed, the wounded, the blind, and the lame.

I can try to shame our politicians, who sent them off to war, and then discarded them like trash, when they come back, missing arms, legs, and suffering from PTSD. I can hope and pray that they will give our soldiers everything they need, everything they deserve in order to put their shattered lives back as best they can. All of the shame, all of the blame doesn’t rest on the back of the government; we too carry our share, because we don’t speak out on their behalf.

I urge, no I beg everyone who reads this to write, or email your MP, and tell them unless they do something to help our wounded, our broken vets, and do it soon, that they better not come knocking on your door, asking for your vote when the next election rolls around, because you won’t give it to them.

To new Canadians, I bid you welcome to your new home, your new life, your new freedom, from whatever oppressive regime you came from. I ask you to pray,  at the rising and the going down of the sun for our soldiers who’ve been wounded, and who’ve died to provide you and your family with a fresh start. Without their gallant bravery, without their selfless sacrifice, you would still be suffering at the hands of some despot.

I urge you to embrace all that Canada has to offer, and not try to change our customs, or our faith. It is because of our inherent decency, because of our Christianity that we welcome you. I understand that you come from lands with different customs than we have, but before you start demanding that your wife and children have to follow the old rules, stop; reflect and ask yourself why you came to Canada in the first place. If your answer is, you came to have a better life for them, then let them embrace that better life. Let them enjoy every freedom that we have to offer.

If however you wish to cling to the old oppressive ways of your former country, perhaps you should consider returning to it, because it will be far easier to control your children and wife or wives there, than it is here. It will be easier to tell them how to dress, how to act, who to have for friends, and who your children are to marry as well.

If you stay here, you can expect that your girls will to want to be popular, want to wear makeup, want to dress the way Canadian girls do, and want to have boyfriends, because it is in their nature to do so.

Once again I bid you welcome, because you are, but only if you truly want to be a Canadian.

One last thought before I end this open letter. I make a promise now to the fallen, the forgotten, that as long as I draw breath, I will remember you. I will remember your great sacrifice, and be thankful. I also promise not to forget the soldiers coming home from another far off war, and do whatever is in my power to help them, even if it is no more than my poor attempt at writing poetry in their honour.

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Filed under Article of Interest, essay

Politics Canadian Style

Once again our duly elected government has used under handed practices to assure themselves a majority in an election. I am referring to the F-35 debacle. Now that the ballots have been counted, now that the reins of power are tight in Harper’s firm unrelenting hand, reins that he and his cohorts will hold onto for four years, the true cost of the fighter planes has come to light.

I realize that new planes are required for the men and women who take to the skies every day to defend our freedom and sovereignty and to provide them with anything less than the best in the world is doing them and us a dis-service. I don’t begrudge the staggering cost, but I do take issue with the way our government kept the amount of money we will be paying under their hat until the election was decided in their favour.

As far as I am concerned, the way they selected the fighter plane without due process of competition is another bone of contention. In all fairness they should have decided what our needs as a nation are for the next few decades, went out for tenders, and then chosen the most competitive price, instead of making an arbitrary decision.

I am not surprised at their stealth tactics, but I am disappointed by them. After all, Mr. Harper promised openness and transparency in his dealings with the Canadian people. Once again, a politician has fallen far short of the standards he set for himself and his government.

Where will he go from here? Will he do the right thing, admit he was wrong, and go out into the market place for the fighter planes, or will he tuck in his chin like most leaders do and go full steam ahead. Canadians are watching you Mr. Harper, watching and hoping that you will measure up for once. After all, you work for us, and it is about time you realized this, instead of seeming behaving like being Prime Minister of the greatest country in the world is somehow your divine right.

For the next four years we Canadians have given you stewardship over our fortunes, our lives and our destiny, and I plead with you to be a good steward. Instead of wanting to play with the big boys when it comes to saber rattling, you need, you must return to our traditional role, a role that over the years garnered us a great deal of respect in the world, that of peacekeeper instead of war maker.

I personally believe that instead of looking elsewhere for new fighter jets we should re-establish our own program. After all we once developed the best fighter plane in the world, the Avro Arrow. If it hadn’t been for our government’s dumb decision, we would now be a world leader. Instead of going out and spending billions of hard earned Canadian dollars, we could be earning billions. A plane of our own design, built by us would go a long ways to provide badly needed high paying jobs.

Because a Conservative government put an end to the Arrow, I suppose it is too much to hope for that our present leaders would ever consider doing the right thing. Perhaps we will get lucky in the next election and choose a leader with vision and integrity. Could that be Justin Trudeau? Only time will tell, until then we must pray that Mr. Harper will  put partisan politics aside and guide us through the stormy seas that lie in our future.

 

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Filed under political commentary, political essay

Kingdom of Light Kingdom of Dark Now Avaliable

On and on Burt ran. Worn boot heels clattered on the cobblestone road. His heart pounded in his chest and he gasped for air. He wanted to fall onto the road but he knew he couldn’t. He knew he had to be inside the crystal cave before the Devouring Dark began to skulk through the forest.

He stopped for a minute to take several breaths and for his hammering heart to slowdown a little. He kept his eyes glued to the left side of the road and hoped that he would soon find his safe refuge. Nothing yet, no sanctuary appeared out of the gathering gloom.

The boy glanced up into the darkening sky and shivered. “I better find it soon,” the sound of his shaking voice did nothing to give him courage.

He stopped running when a bit of sparkling whiteness caught his eyes. He mumbled, “That must be the cave,” and raced towards what he hoped would be a safe refuge.

There it was at last, refuge, a safe harbour from the approaching night. It was just like Namhina Lightmaker said it was. The white outer walls gleamed in the dim light.

Burt rushed towards the narrow entrance. The mouth of the cave was blocked by a four-foot high row of brush that extended six feet into the cave.

A loud voice seemed to come out of nowhere, “My, my, look what we have here. It looks like a tasty looking morsel, a very tasty looking morsel indeed.”

Burt pulled himself onto the brush pile and scrambled inside. A loud, “Ouch,” escaped from his mouth as he landed head first on the sandy floor. He struggled to his feet, rubbed his sore head and spun around towards the frosty, evil sounding voice.

Washing over the outer edge of the wood pile was a dull, dead looking darkness. Burt screamed, “What are you? What do you want? Go away. Go away, there’s nothing for you here.”

An icy chuckle met his forlorn cry, “On the contrary, there’s much for me here.” The chilling words were followed by the sound of soggy lip smacking. “There’s my supper for one thing. Well,to be honest, my supper is the only thing that’s important to me. I’m afraid you’ll just whet my appetite. Now boy if you’re quite ready peel of that ugly looking skin of yours. If you’re nice and don’t fight, I promise it won’t hurt much. Not much at all.”

The thing’s last words were followed by a snigger that sent icy chills racing up Burt’s spine. Two indigo eyes darted all around for a weapon, “Anything at all will do.”

The black nothingness oozed over the brush pile and onto the white sand of the floor. “What’s that you said boy? If you want an answer from me, you best speak up.”

Namhina Lightmaker’ last words of advice came pouring back into the boy’s terrified mind. “Once you’re inside the crystal cave, find the driest branch that you can. Look deep into the wood until you see the trons. Once they’re aware of you and they will be, they’ll obey your every mind command. All you have to do is tell them to speed up and in no time at all your branch will be blazing away. When it is, thrust it in to the pile of wood and set it on fire.

The Devouring Dark is afraid of flames and will never dare to cross the blaze. You’ll be as safe as a bumble bird in a thorn tree.”

Burt remembered his question as well “What happens when the brush is all gone?”

Namhina had chuckled, “That’s a magic cave and magic wood. No matter how much of it is burnt up, the pile remains the same. It’ll burn bright until the morning sun comes up and then it will go out.”

A branch snapped as Burt took another step backwards. He looked down at his feet and muttered, “It’s not much,” as he bent over to pick it up.

The black nothingness giggled and leapt backwards, “Please don’t hit me kind sir. I’ll be a good little boy. I promise I’ll be a good little boy.” It reared up and the cave grew dimmer.

Burt could barely make out his hand or the stick he held. He tore his eyes away from the encroaching death and focused them on the branch in his hand. He tried to look inside, but his gaze was blocked by the rough brown bark.

A long wide tongue lashed out from the evil dark and whipped across the toe of his right boot. The pain from his foot made him look down at the floor. The ends of his boot and sock were gone and drops of blood came from the tip of his big toe.

A loud, cheerful, “Yummy,” came from the shadow,” and the tongue struck out again. This time the front of his left boot vanished.

Burt screamed again.

Once more the slimy appendage came towards him. It was slower this time and stopped a few inches from his white face.

The voice of death rasped, “Will it be an eye this time or your nose.”

Burt moaned, “What?”

“I said,” the ice cold voice sounded frustrated and angry. “I said will it be an eye or your nose this time? I think that it’s only fair for you to choose, seeing as how they belong to you, for now at least.” The chilling words were followed by malevolent, mocking laughter.

The boy backed up two more steps and pressed his shaking body against the smooth cave wall. He tore his eyes away from the laughing darkness and gazed once more at the tip of the branch in his hand.

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Filed under Adventure, Fantasy Story

Kingdom of Dark Kingdom of Light

My novel, “Kingdom of Dark Kingdom of Light,” will be avaliable soon at Smashwords in all ebook reader formats. keep watching my blog for updates.

Claws that Crush

Twelve-year-old Burt Safford curled up into a tight ball on the wet grass, closed his indigo eyes and tried to shut out the screams of the dying girl. The harder he tried, the louder they seemed to grow. Each pitiful cry mingled with the clicking of bony claws and a loud slurp, slurp, slurp.

An image of slimy sucking mouths and rasp like tongues filled his mind with terror. He wished the dark swirling fog would hide him from the two beasts devouring Aldana. He wished he was safe at home in his bed. He wished the terrifying wails would end. Yet he knew when the final death rattle came and in time it would, he would be their dessert.

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Music Box Dreamer

Annie O’Quinn, still wrapped in the cocoon of a night full of sweet, delicious love making yawned and stretched in the big bed. She felt fingers of worry brush against her naked back when she realized her Tommy boy was not beside her. Her panic subsided when she saw his nude form standing near the window peering out through a blue lace curtain. She pushed the covers back, eased out of bed and made her way to him on tip toes.   Tommy didn’t move a muscle as two slender hands covered his grey eyes. He inched backwards until he could feel her rising nipples pressed against his skin.   She giggled, “Guess who,” as the heat from his body and his smell made her nipples grow hard.”   He rubbed fingers through the rough edges of his beard before answering, “Hmn, must be Mrs. O’Leary, the goat woman from down the road.”   A hand moved off of his right eye and a small pounded into his shoulder.   Her loud, “Are you saying I smell like a goat,” caused him to laugh so hard that tears ran down his cheeks. “That’s a fine thing to say to your new bride.”   Tommy turned then and warped his strong arms around her slender body, pressing every inch of the soft skin against him. He whispered, “You smell absolutely delicious, detachable and good enough to eat,” into her right ear. “I love you Annie my darling.”He stepped back a little and tilted her chin sky wards.   She pretended to pout for a moment before surrendering her soft lips to his hot passionate kisses.   Tears began to flow out of sapphire eyes.   He murmured, “What’s wrong my darling.”   She sobbed, “Everything, this damned war, you having to leave today and the thought I might lose you for good.”   Before he stepped away from Annie he put a happy look on his face, “Nothing to worry about darling, Mrs. O’Quinn didn’t raise any foolish children. I intended to dig my foxhole down to China and not peek over the edge until the war is over.”   She blubbered, “But you might get something important blown off. I suppose we could manage if it was only an arm or a leg.”   Loud male laughter bounced around the room and underneath the bottom of the door. “Perhaps I should ask my sergeant for two helmets, one for my head and one for all my important parts.”   Annie felt anger stirring again but when she looked at the grin on his face and saw the love light in his eyes it faded. A bright smile shone through her tears, “You know what I mean.”   He chuckled, “All too well my darling Annie. Chin up though, when I get to Paris, I’ll buy you a black silk negligee. It will be so shear that I can see through it.”   She hugged him tight and whispered, “Promise you won’t go to Paris because I want see us with you. I can picture us now walking along the banks of the Seine and listening to sidewalk troubadours sing love songs to us.” She paused for a moment before continuing, “Do you know what I’d like to do right now.”   Tommy grinned, “Me too but I don’t think we have enough time for it.”   She slugged his right shoulder and laughed, “Not that silly, well that to but since we don’t have time I would settle for a dance. I wished we had music.”   The young soldier clapped a hand to his forehead, “In all the excitement of the wedding and last night I forgot about the present I bought you.”   She sniffed, “I feel bad now because I didn’t have time to get you anything.”   He looked into her eyes, “You gave me the best present in the world when you became my wife.” He grinned, “It was more thrilling undressing you last night than it ever was unwrapping a Christmas present. Tommy scooped her up in his strong arms and carried her to the bed. He said, “One two, three,” and then let her go.   She squealed in delight as she landed on the mattress and bounced.   The young man bent over and pulled out a parcel wrapped in gold paper and tied with a neat red bow.   Annie bounced up and down on the bed, “What is it, what is it?” Two slender hands tore the paper off, two eyes opened wide when she saw the beautiful antique music box.” She gave her beloved Tommy a warm, tender smile and pulled his head down for a long, fiery kiss.   Two little marble figurines dressed in wedding clothe popped up when the carved lid, inlaid with gold was lifted. A tanned, trembling hand wound the key of the box.”   Two happy young people held each other tight and danced as the beautiful strains of the Vienna waltz filled the hotel bedroom.   ****   “Will you be a dear and get the door Bertha,” Annie opened the kitchen range door to inspect the pair of apple pies. By now they were a golden brown and filling every inch of the cosy apartment with the fragrance of apples, cinnamon and melted sugar. She folded the white dish cloth in two before lifting one done to perfection pie out of the hot oven.   Bertha shouted, “Right away, sister dear,” and turned the big radio down a notch before racing to the door.   Just as the last pie was set to cool Bertha’s voice come floating to her over the voice of Bing Crosby’s crooning. “It’s for you Annie.”   Annie shouted, “Tell whoever it is to hold their horses and that I’ll be there in a minute. The instant her sapphire settled on the two officers standing in her door way she knew why they were here. Her hart that had been so happy a just moment ago dropped into her feet. Her faced turned whiter than a new washed sheet. It felt to her like her life was being drained from her as her eyes filled with tears.   The tall soldier with captain’s bars on his collar was the first to speak, “I’m sorry to have to tell you but your husband corporal was killed two days ago at Dunkirk. The beach was strafed by a dozen German fighters. Your husband was seriously wounded when he left his shelter to help another soldier. He shielded his sergeant with his body and saved the man’s life. I have his Victoria Cross for you and a letter that was found in his pocket. Since there were no military secrets in it we felt it wasn’t necessary to censor it. He was a brave man and you should be very proud of him, his country and his fellow soldiers certainly are.”   The two soldiers turned sharply on their heels and marched away.   Annie tried to open the envelope but her hands were shaking too much. Without saying a word she handed it to her sister.   Bertha’s hands were shaking almost as bad as Annie’s were but she finally managed to remove the blood stained sheet of paper. In a voice that trembled and through her tears she began to read. “My darling dearest Annie:   Well my beautiful, sexy angel, it looks like this war is going to be a bit longer than anyone expected. These German soldiers are a tough lot and not about to give up without one hell of a fight. Please excuse the language my dear little sister if you happen to be there when Annie gets my letter.   Right now I’m enjoying a nice vacation on the beach of Dunkirk waiting for a boat to take us to England. Like as not I’ll be having tea and crumpets, whatever they are with the King and Queen by the time you get this.   Through all of this mess, the guns, the bombs, the blood and the death I have the memory of our two nights together to keep me sane and safe. I can still taste your wine sweet kisses on my lips. I can still feel the soft silk of your beautiful legs wrapped around me. I can still hear your sweet voice moan in passion as we surrendered too wondrous rapture.   Sorry my darling but I’ve got to go now, some enemy planes are circling over head, looking for some dumb bunny to stick there neck out. Well it isn’t going to be me. I’m going to climb back into my foxhole to China until these birds go back to their nest. I kept my promise love of my life, I never went to Paris   I send all my love, my heart and a million kisses.   Forever yours, your Tommy boy.   ****    The old, rickety rocking chair squeaked back and forth, back and forth. Each forward movement was less than the last one. Each backward movement was less than the last one. At last it came to a stop.   The little dancers on top of the old music slowed down as the last strains of the Vienna Waltz faded into cracks of the room. The only movement now was that of a tattered curtain blowing in the wind coming around the edges of the window. The only sound was of heavy raindrops pounding on the glass.   If there had been anyone left in that dank, dingy room to see anything they would have noticed that the large picture had changed. The images were no longer those of a woman in a wedding dress and a young soldier in uniform. It was the same two people but now the young woman wore a just below the knee, blue summer dress. Long, golden tresses flowed around her angel face in the soft summer breeze. The young man’s brown shirt had the first two top buttons undone. The tail was tucked into the top of a pair of blue jeans.   On the left of the happy couple the River Seine gurgled in its bed. Behind them and silhouetted the Eifel Tower stood straight and tall.   The young man had his right arm around the blonde haired girl and he held a bottle of wine in his left. She had a loaf of crusty French bread tucked under her left arm. A slender right hand rested on the slight mound of her belly. A belly that was growing closer to fruition with each passing day.

the end

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