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

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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.


Is It Okay to Run Out of Some Groceries?

My friend, Susan’s daughter-in-law, Josie, doesn’t keep up with grocery shopping. At mealtimes, she improvises with whatever’s in the cupboards. Her two small children are healthy and happy. They eat a few bites, declare themselves satisfied and are excused from the dinner table. An hour later, they run to the fridge for a few more…

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Terror Evolves

Recently I experienced the old terror I’d felt in childhood when my frequently inebriated parents screamed in fury, sometimes hitting each other. As a kid, I hid behind the living room couch or under the covers of my bed, trembling. A close relative, my beloved cousin Joe, has a partner, Brandon, who is prone to…

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Invisible and Visible Bridges

When I drive, I often don’t know when the straight asphalt surface skims over a waterway beneath me. The road ahead looks normal, but it actually takes me from one edge of a body of water to the other side, while I’m completely unaware of having been on a bridge at all. In Venice, Italy,…

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Keep Dismay Away

My heart aches when I hear or read about current wars. When I see the homeless folks on our streets, I feel sad, almost hopeless. For the people I love and myself, aging is difficult. Some friends and family dwell on both personal and political catastrophes with non-stop complaining and blaming. In spite of their…

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A Dentist’s Kinky Secret

Last Thursday, much to my surprise, I saw one of my body’s nerves. I never dreamed such a thing could happen. I’d studied and taught anatomy and enjoyed viewing exhibitions that showed full-sized cross-sections of human anatomy. Some displays isolated the nervous system, so I’d been aware of nerves’ appearances for many years. However, my…

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Glacial Milk

Rowing across a large freshwater lake at the foot of Mendenhall Glacier in Alaska, strong headwinds blow us backwards. The glacier’s enormity spawns unique weather around it. The frigid expanse meets warmer air above it and creates a whirling tempest over the water. Melting ice mixes with ground-up rock, pulverized by the slow-moving behemoth. Hundreds…

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Not Chosen

I wasn’t chosen.  At the neighborhood shopping center, I saw a scruffy man glance at me. I thought nothing of it. I slowed for a plump middle-aged woman in front of me, who’d stopped to rummage through her grocery cart. Once past her, I resumed my long strides, shoulders back, arms swinging. In the breeze…

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Loving Diversity

I’ve never understood why I’ve always enjoyed living in the midst of diverse cultures. In my youth, bored in my suburban white high school, I transferred into an almost all black and Asian inner city school. I loved dwelling in the midst of the new social richness. As an adult, I’ve lived in Hawaii for…

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I’ve known a work colleague and his wife, David and Sally, for thirty years. I’d always considered them both to be boring. Recently, I became aware that, for all these years, I’d been silently criticizing David as not doing his job very well.  If only he’d do X or Y, he’d do so much better,…

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Holding My Breath

Driving over the Ko’olau mountains on Oahu with a guest from Europe, we came to the Tetsuo Harano tunnel and I felt the old childhood impulse to hold my breath. All my youthful friends and neighbors adhered to this custom, so I assumed it was a common practice. I asked my friend if she and…

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Spontaneous Acts of Kindness

“Do your little bit of good where you are; it’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.” Archbishop Desmond Tutu As I stroll on a city sidewalk, I see a young mother gently instruct her two-year-old to move over, to make room for me on the walkway. I say a heartfelt,…

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Human Story Lines

When I meet someone, their attitudes and assumptions often reveal underlying themes that define them. The most common personal script is: “Here’s how important I am.” Each time I visit my cousin, she shows off her five boats to me, a non-boat-owner. Another popular self-concept is: “I know best and others should copy me.” An…

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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