About “My Soul’s Retreat”

     My Soul’s Retreat is a place where I am going to address with LOVE, AFFECTION and  ACKNOWLEDGEMENT those people, institutions and labors of love,  that have made a real difference in my life.  As a child my family affectionately called me “Normita”.   My “given name” is Norma Elizabeth Ochoa-(Hamilton)-for those in the Hispanic community, on the Hispanic side of my family and the wonderful teachers in the little school in Mexico where my parents sent me to learn Spanish, who believe that by not adding your mother’s maiden name to your own, you deny credit and thus acknowledgment to the one person above all others that was essential in making you who you are… and so, there it is, my first acknowledgment!



In the last 50+ years, there have been a few marriages and subsequently learning experiences that included name changes along the way, my online moniker is “neocup“- and that speaks to the entirety of who I am now and who I have been along the way.  One hard earned and for me, at least… not so easily accepted understanding  in this learning process or acquisition of life lessons came to me one Cold Flower Mound Christmas Morning on our way back to the Rio Grande Valley…


Winter 2011 031-001

Winter’s Epiphany: A Tanka

by neocup


The day comes, when you

Realize people don’t change

And you have to learn

To Love them for ‘Who they are’

Not ‘Who you want them to be’


My Soul’s Retreat  is the birthplace, the beginning of my catharsis.  I will leave poemsnotes, speculations and meandering writings  about ideas, thoughts or issues I’m thinking about or worrying over…and  “reblog” websites that I think are pertinent now (I find them useful today for a certain aspect of their contents) and later (I will want to return to them at another point in time when I have more latitude and leisure to peruse and/or digest their contents more fully).

I hope that by having a place to “put down” these thoughts, ideas, URL’s, etc., I will return here when I have quiet time to mull over, reconsider and reconvene with clarity, conscience, and humility…those life nuisances that sometimes get in the way of my being the best person/poet/publisher that I can be…

My goal is to provide both a spring and springboard from which to write about life’s changes, chagrins, and challenges…always remaining humble and hopeful; always remaining focused on my search for the truth.



Tanka for the Sufi

by neocup


Leading our spirits

Guiding all souls to the light

Different Highways

Same path, same destination

All are searching for “THE TRUTH”


I remain dedicated to my wonderful parents who made sure that I became bilingual (even though it wasn’t considered important in that era or locale), made sure that I learned to type (even though I never ever wanted to become a secretary), and made sure that I finished school (even if there were a few learning curves along the way!)


I was blessed with  educated, wonderful, caring, and generous people for parents.  My parents taught me everything I know about life and living, continue to provide me with daily emotional support in dealing with my challenges, and love me no matter what!   

I will always be grateful for all that they have done for me.

And regardless of all of the name changes and “turns in the road” my life may take, in my heart of hearts I’ll always be…








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