"How did it get so late so soon? It's right before it's afternoon. December is here before it's June. My goodness how the time has flown. How did it get so late so soon?"
~ Dr. Seuss


The month of June holds many wonderful memories for me. When I reflect back on my childhood, I think about how it signaled the end of the school year and dreams of summer plans. By June my mother would have already registered me for a summer activity, whether it was a course or summer camp.

June also reminds me of my father and how we always used to honor him in a special way on Father's Day. My dad was an immigrant and Holocaust survivor, and he was so happy to come to this country in 1947. He was never able to finish high school, but he had a lot of street smarts and innate intuition. I learned from him to "follow my gut."

My father lost his baby brother Joshua in the Holocaust. It was my honor to name my only son after him. Now my baby Joshua, at 33, is a father himself to beautiful Jahji Siddhartha. My Joshua carries so many loving traits from my father—kindness, generosity, and sense of humor. Like my father, my son's energy is vibrant and everyone wants to be near him. One other thing he has also inherited from my father is his beautiful smile. Please see my poem below, "His Smile," dedicated to my son Joshua.

The month of June also reminds me of my grandmother Regina, who was born on June 22, 1903, and orphaned during World War I. My first memoir, Regina's Closet: Finding My Grandmother's Secret Journal, was about our relationship, and I'm now working on a follow-up book. If she were alive, this year she would have turned 118.

Here's wishing everyone a beautiful June! Here in southern California we call the weather pattern in this month "June gloom" because the sky is so often overcast. It was also pretty cloudy most of this past month too ("May gray"), so who knows if June will bring in something different. But whatever the case . . . I'm sending love and light to all!
AN IMAGINARY AFFAIR: POEMS WHISPERED TO NERUDA is now available for pre-order.



Sample poem

Your Smile

(After "Your Laughter" by Pablo Neruda)

Take my diamonds, bury my treasures
and burn my books, but never 
take away your smile.
Don’t take back the carnation you picked 
as a child, the baby food left on porcelain plates
or that golden light on everything 
on the day you were born, son.
Your sadness—each day of it—
pools into the lining of me: those many worlds 
on your brow and in your gaze’s shadow.
Let me tug them from you as you sleep 
not far from the turbulent ocean:
such mystery and regret.
I smile at you.
You didn’t smile back then.
But you do, now.
I walk away, glowing.


Book Review

"...this book is more than a conversation with Neruda's poems. In this book, Diana Raab unveils trauma, desire, her life experience, and her passionate, non-imaginary affair with poetry."

Mariano Zaro, author of Decoding Sparrows

To order: click here

  • Write about an important male figure in your life, past or present.
  • Write about what you do to cheer yourself up.
  • Make a list of some of the best friends you've had.
  • Write about a childhood school experience you'll never forget.

"Bleeding for You." (poem). Last Leaves. April 2022.

"Amplified Melancholy." (poem). The Stray Branch. May 2022.

"The Parking Lot." (poem) Your Fire Magazine. May 2, 2022.

"Here's a Quick Way to Develop Your Intuition." (article). The Good Men Project. May 5, 2022.

"How to Be Unafraid of the Gloomy Places." (article) The Good Men Project. May 12, 2022.

"How to Be in the Flow." (article). The Good Men Project. May 19, 2022.

"7 Signs Someone is Lying to You." (article) The Good Men Project. May 26, 2022.

"How Storytelling Gave Me Hope and Perspective." (article). Post Road Magazine. May 2022.
The Art of Living by Thich Nhat Hanh (self-help/inspirational)

This is not a new book. But like all of Thich Nhat Hanh’s books, this is a classic packed with wisdom that can be read and reread. The book provides a spiritual framework for everyday living while helping us understand where we came from, where we’re going, and how to live in the moment and practice mindfulness. 

Thich Nhat Hahn claims that we all have Buddha bodies, which means that we have the ability to be alert and fully awake. If we maintain these characteristics we have the ability to heal and nourish. In other words, “If you have the mind of love, you are a buddha in action.” He also discusses the importance of being and not just doing. He makes the valid point that there are people in our universe who don’t tend to do very much; however, their presence is essential to the well-being of their community or the world because they are contributing the quality of their being.

Buy a copy of this book for yourself and someone you love. It helps to remind us of what's important during these very challenging times.
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