1st Place Award Winner in the Paris, London and Amsterdam Book Festivals.
"Each of these forty comical stories conveys a satisfying quirky message that empowers the reader. Several years ago, I decided to explore the happy side of life, while seeking deeper truths--or not," says Burns. "I wanted to see what humor could show me. At times I was inspired by the thought of a pagan Anne Lamotte or David Sedaris on estrogen."
Libido Tsunami: Awash with the Droll in Life enchants with forty humorous stories. Burns unearths the ludicrous in the emotional live traps surrounding us -- in families, friends and disastrous romances. She relishes the uproarious human spirit and its on-going absurd wrestling with ego.
"Absolutely LOVE the descriptions [in this work]. The connection to chakras, along with the metaphorical richness … is wonderful. Very very very clever and, dare I say it?—unique. This is refreshing, funny, inventive, and delightful."
Sharon Whitehill, Ph.D.
Professor of English Literature
Author of The Life and Work of Mary O'Hara
Author of My Friend Flicka and On the Trail of Flicka's Friend
LIBIDO TSUNAMI is a collection of forty humorous short stories exploring human tragedy, drama, vulnerability and adventure in laugh-out-loud incidents taken from Burns' quirky experiences. In them, Burns salutes the droll in her life within four topics which correspond to four directions on the Native American medicine wheel.
The West, “A Flood of Family,” reconnoiters the emotional live traps unique to our original home nest. Burns’ familial tradition, to laugh, is a way to frame, hide and disguise essential domestic spectacles as seen in the comic frustration in “Unrequited-it is” or the ridiculous awe of “TWNBD or Twin Bed” short for “Those Who Need to Be Deified.”
In the East, “Male Amazements,” Burns exposes curious relationships with men that go topsy-turvy, and are never what any logical person would expect. From the miscommunications in “Sentence Interruptus” to an odd male desire for bondage in “Order in the Court” to basic lust in “Male Scent,” Burns tickles the funny bone of relationships.
In the South, rooted in the land, “The Unknown Hawaii,” Burns explores the most recently formed real estate on earth. With an erupting volcano daily creating ever more land, Hawaii lends itself to themes of phantasmagoric regeneration and bizarre comedy.
In the North, we see the human spirit and the absurd ways people attempt to disguise and transcend ego in “The Life Divine.” One can do this by grieving with underwear, staying in a state of self-hypnosis, eating money-cakes, and by avoiding archetype attacks.
When I went to Venice, Italy to install an exhibit of my art, I had no idea I would experience a car-free city. With summer tourists, the population of 50,000 swelled to over 200,000. When I arrived, I was stunned and exhilarated to see no cars at all. Boats lazed through the canals, but Venetians mostly…Read More
The other day I spent time with a lovely sixteen-year-old young woman. I remembered how self-conscious I felt about my body at that age. I’d already begun to restrict my diet in attempts to lose weight. In the 1960s, during my teen-aged years, my friends and I idolized the British model, Twiggy, whose figure matched…Read More
Why do I love meditation? Let me count the ways. 1. When I’m anxious or upset, I count each breath. When I can’t sit with closed eyes, respiration is always available. Perhaps for this reason, focus on breath is the foundation of most meditation. It’s easy to remember to do it. Sometimes, I put a…Read More
On the last Friday of each month, when Ernie, my mother’s third and final husband, had finished his Playboy magazine, Mom took it. With her flashing blue eyes and platinum wig, she effused dramatic flair. Over time, she devised the most interesting and amusing way to recycle the monthly subscription. Their driveway swooped up a…Read More
Amongst birds, it apparently matters who you spend the night with. At sunset, I love to wander outdoors to hear the raucous and high-pitched chirping and squawking from the tops of trees. The brouhaha emits intense sounds and makes me laugh. I take great comfort in the birds’ busy squabbling. Animal research has found that…Read More
Why is it hard to find a good hairdresser? I want a simple “bob” haircut (longer on the sides than the shingled back), which seems to be fairly standard. But apparently not. When I meet a new stylist and make my request for a “bob,” most hem and haw and turn me over to someone…Read More
I walk around in the world considering that, at my essence, I’m equal to everyone else. Of course, I see that some people are smarter than me or more skilled, for example, at surgery or computer repair. However, in terms of basic human respect, I feel parity with others. We’re human, with all our joys…Read More
The other day, walking out my front door, I found myself glancing down to make sure my shirt was buttoned. Then I laughed. I’d caught myself doing one of Mom’s Sanity Checks. She always told me, “If you forget to button your blouse, that’s a sure sign you’re looney.” My mother passed away more than…Read More
At times, my life appeared to resemble an unfolding fern frond. An inner force pushed me to create and face hard challenges: a career teaching adults, public speaking, forming enduring relationships, becoming an exhibiting artist, child-raising, learning meditation and aspiring for enlightenment and founding two civil right organizations (the Ingraham-Garfield Student Exchange Program in 1964…Read More
I’m not always clever enough to comprehend other people’s inner realities at the moment I’m talking to them. But a recent incident astounded me. My adult son lives in a different city and I take great delight in visiting him. He often takes me out with his friends for coffee, drinks, or a party. I’m…Read More
Twice in my life, I’ve stood above rainbows, looking down at them. Each occasion spawned different spiritual surprises Twenty years ago I hiked with my son’s sixth grade class in the mountains rising above a jungle valley called Manoa, a part of Honolulu. Known for its plentiful rainbows, we trod up the steep trail to…Read More
Kaethe Kauffman has five poems included in the newly released poetry anthology Pua La’a Kea: Sacred Light of Flower, edited by Robert Uhlene Maikai, published by Savant Books and Publications. Kauffman’s poems include: The Primal Modern, Snake Lovers, Meditation, Hurtling and Dead Girls Float. PRIMAL MODERN -explores neighborhood closeness while singing and dancing around a…Read More
Recognition & Awards
2019 Amazon Genre Bestselling Poet
Entwined: 2019 Savant Poetry Anthology
Kindred: 2018 Savant Poetry Anthology
2017 Amsterdam Book Festival, 1st place, Libido Tsunami
2017 Paris Book Festival, 1st place, Libido Tsunami
2016 London Book Festival, 1st prize, Libido Tsunami
2016 Pacific Rim Book Festival, Runner-up, Libido Tsunami
2016 Los Angeles Book Festival, Wild Card Honorable Mention, Libido Tsunami
Running From the Pack: 2015/16 Savant Poetry Anthology won an award from the Pacific Rim Book Festival
2015 1st prize for non-fiction, Lorin Tarr Gill Writing competition
Volutions: 2014 Savant Poetry Anthology won Book Festival awards in the Los Angeles, Paris and Pacific Rim Book Festivals
2007 Chroma Award, National League of American Pen Women
1998 Wu & Elsie Ject-Key Memorial Award, N.A.W.A., New York City
1997 International Woman of the Year Award, International Biographical Center
1997 The 20th Century Award for Achievement, International Biographical Center
1996 Elizabeth Morse Genius Foundation Award, N.A.W.A., New York City
1995 Juror's Award, National League of American Pen Women
1986 Teaching Excellence Award, Sierra Nevada College, Incline, Nevada
1980 Grant, Tosco Corporation, Los Angeles, California
1974 Juror's Award, California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo, CA
1966 Max H. Block Award for Humanism , City of Seattle, Washington