"I present a plethora of original quotes, poetry, one-liners, and thoughts coupled with a nuance of views and expressions."

Author Noriega has compiled a variety of ideas in both prose and poetry and has divided them into seven segments: Quotes and One-liners, Inspirational Thought, Views and Perspectives, Poetry, Philosophical Notions, Satire, and Sexuality. He begins with simple aphorisms, reminding us that we all yearn “to be appreciated,” contentment fosters appreciation, and selfishness destroys it. His philosophy touches on civil discourse, civil disobedience, government, and politics, while his wit is revealed in such jests as, “Sometimes when I talk to myself, I don’t listen…” Other comments focus on money, laughter, adolescence, and the contrast between mere existence and a purpose-driven life. Poems tackle such subjects as “Health,” “Aging,” and “Our Precious Children,” and as with the other themes presented, the emphasis is always positive. There are inspirational moments, too, as when the writer states, “Mistakes are the gateway to the beauty of thinking.”

Noriega, who grew up in the West Indies and now resides in Texas, wrote this slim volume to provoke thought and response for his readers. Each section begins with his guideline: “Ponder or Converse.” His occasional use of questions to approach provocative subject matter allows him to tackle such thorny issues as pro-life, the right/left political divide, and the many permutations of racism. His poems are pithy, and his prose flows smoothly. His spiritual nature shows itself in some of the subtler themes, along with a healthy dose of mild mockery for balance. His varied themes offer a wide-ranging study of life’s stages. At times, his one-liners provide the enigmatic effect of Zen koans: “Getting started requires inertia.” Those who read Noriega’s book may wish he had filled his sparsely printed pages with even more of his wisdom, more “fruit” to fully represent the cornucopia he set out to create.

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