Forging Ahead

Life’s current reality can be incredibly burdensome, making it challenging to get past that long enough to believe in fresh starts. Have you ever wished you could rewrite the script? There have been times when (with the luxury of days passed) I’ve thought, “I wish I would have done things differently.” Perhaps I would have […]

A Hope-Filled New Year

“Happy New Year!” These words—maybe this year more than ever—hold so much hope as we pray for freedom from the ravages of a virus, an opportunity to heal a hurting nation, and awareness of the value of each human. A fresh start and the ability to look forward is beautiful—it’s like stepping into a new, […]

Mourning Losses/Morning Losses

One early morning, I sat at my desk, a notebook in front of me, a stack of books on my left, and big, hot tears running down my face. I was thinking about how fast the decades have flown by, aware of how our perception of time changes as we age. Years ago, my granddaughter […]

Thankful—Full of Thanks

THANKFULconscious of benefits received, relieved that something has (or hasn’t) happened, contented, appreciative, grateful благодарно, reconnaissant, אסיר תודה, grato, 감사한, riconoscente, agradecido, 感謝している, dankbaar, ευγνώμων, 感激 “Thankful” is expressed and felt differently. Many of us have the privilege of being grateful for people who love us, health, a career (or retirement), a roof over our heads. In […]

Privileged to Cast My Vote

This morning I voted. I stood in line for just about two hours, winding up and down outdoor lines marked six feet apart. I wore my mask, of course, and boots and gloves and a hat under my hood, but the cold wind still seeped into my veins. But that didn’t matter. The crisp air […]

Poetry on a Tuesday

I started a post then scrapped it—too serious (life feels serious enough right now). I started another one, but it felt too “minimal”—not strong enough for the times we’re living in. So, I decided that this would be a good day to post pieces from Poetry and Other Random Thoughts. All of these poems have […]

Lost & Found

Some things that might be found in a “Lost and Found” box:a single glove,an umbrella, a book.Much of what’s “found” and deposited in the box is forgotten, never reclaimed by its original owner. You look in the box for what you’ve “Lost.” You put into the box something you’ve “Found”—something that’s not yours.  “Lost” doesn’t only apply […]

Hope

We need hope—a reservoir of spiritual, emotional, physical, and mental strength. Without it, we wrestle more with the challenges of this world. Hope acknowledges dreams and desires for something “better.” Hope leads to expectations that become birthed into reality. Hope champions optimism, fans flames of faith and silences gongs of hatred. Hope is Rosa Parks […]

Awareness, Pain, Movement, Grace

Death Awareness In earlier posts, I’ve written about Maraṇasati—recognizing that as we’re living, we’re dying. I always hold the fragility of life somewhere in my frame of consciousness, but, right now, it takes center stage even more often. Rampant Pain racism hopelessness stress judgment being unseen fear shame hate with big capital letters psychological abuse marginalization brutality […]

In Pursuit of Being Real

In Margery Williams’ The Velveteen Rabbit, a stuffed toy is given to a boy as a Christmas gift, but soon forgotten, set aside in favor of other “more expensive” toys. The older and wiser, Skin Horse, befriends the rabbit, teaching him about love and becoming real. “Real…. is a thing that happens to you. When a […]

The Fabric of You

A while ago, I made pillow covers from delicate fabric with silk fibers of amazing colors. These different threads, woven together, make gorgeous patterns of free form flowers and leaves. The non-selvage edge of this fabric unravels easily and really looking at each strand, I was surprised by how much movement and beauty they had, […]

Bridges & Life, Crossing Bridges Instead of Building Walls

We build a little wall first—just tall enough so that when we venture out (into the sometimes scary world), we can turn around, run fast, jump over it, get really “small” and hide behind it. It’s the “level 1 protection wall” built from something like sand or leaves (sad, lonely). If we have to jump over that wall often enough, we end up creating a sturdier divider. This “level 2 protection wall” is made of materials like brick or wood (bullied, wounded). It still allows us to venture out into the world, but now we have to climb over it to safety. When we’ve had to retreat behind wall number 2 long enough, we finally build the “level 3 protection wall”. This one is serious stuff, an impenetrable structure that no one is getting through! It’s made of steel or concrete (scarred, crushed) and reinforced with pain and abandonment.

Hatred, Violence, Pain, How Do We Move Forward?

Dear Readers, Yesterday, I reached out to a dozen fellow humans➀ with three questions. COVID-19 was the topic of two of them. I’ll post those answers tomorrow. The third question was one I never imagined asking: “With all the hatred, violence, anger, and pain our country is experiencing, how do we move forward and make a difference?”  […]

What Languages Do You Speak?

I love this story from my grandson’s first year of grade school: Ethan had an excellent teacher, and at the beginning of the school year, she asked if any of the children spoke a second language. A few children raised their hands. When she got to Ethan, he said, “I speak Duck➀.” She heard that […]

The Journey

I am a journeyer, traveling through this life, looking and seeking, searching and learning. I pick up things as I journey— a book, a photograph, a postcard and put them in my backpack. Sometimes, I take those things out and look at them, mostly at night, mostly when I’m alone. I smile, I laugh. I […]

Closed Minds

Pre, COVID-19, I parked next to a car with this bumper sticker: “A Closed Mind is a wonderful thing to lose.” When I went back, two women were in the car, so I knocked on the driver’s window and shared how much I love that message, which led to a short conversation about life. Closed-mindedness, unreceptive to […]

Moving From Overwhelmed to Serene and Peaceful, Part I

Do you ever feel overwhelmed, exhausted, or like you’re carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders? Does it sometimes seem that despite how hard you work, how often you “put yourself out there,” or how much you love, it just isn’t enough? Are you ever on the brink of hopelessness, imagining that if you […]

Life Right Now—Sadness and COVID-19

COVID-19 has infected us not only physically. During the past two days, we talked about spirituality, fear, and superheroes. Today, let’s tackle sadness. There are, obviously, a lot of things to be sad about right now. We can’t help experiencing unhappiness in challenging times. But, we can work to move through it. Sit quietly with […]

Life Right Now—Fear, Superheroes, and COVID-19

FEAR Discussions about COVID-19 have become part of our daily conversations. I’m not suggesting that we hide from the updates, but we need an awareness of how being bombarded by this news, on every media platform, is affecting us. Fear has become one of our songs, and there’s a good reason for that. Some of […]

Life Right Now—Spirituality and COVID-19

In the midst of COVID-19, it seems like many of us are in one of two camps. Camp 1 is overflowing with people who are overwhelmed, frustrated or exhausted. Camp 2 holds those who are at the other end of the spectrum and feel defeated, sad, bored, or lonely. How are you holding up? Which camp is […]

Finding Tanquility Now

We usually have some sense of which way our lives are headed, but one of the many lessons, during this time of upheaval is that: when we learn to embrace uncertainty by being present in the moments we have right now, we will have mastered honoring each day as the gift it is. In light of what […]

Paying Attention

I’m aware, so often, of the fragility of each moment (this one is slipping away as I finish this sentence). Most of us assume so much: that we’ll still be breathing at the end of this day, that our loved ones will continue to be part of our lives, that we’ll have food to eat […]

Two Short Poems on Hope & Love

For those who feel despair and those who offer hope;  for those who are scared and those who show love, and for those who are lost and those who guide the way, these poems are for you. FINDING HOPE worlds collide the past and the present slamming into each other— painfully, without regard for the […]

Intentional Resolutions

For some, “New Year’s Resolutions” are an annual part of closing one calendar year and moving onto the next. Others never participate in that practice. For many of us, it’s haphazard. Some years we’re “all in”—creating a list of what we want to change or accomplish; what we resolve to do. Other years, we simply roll […]

A Week Until Christmas

“An Advent Poem”  One week to The Big Day, where did the time go? The hustle the bustle, and what if it snows? There’s still so much shopping, I must get more gifts! How will I be ready for good old Saint Nick? The family is flying from west coast to east, but I still […]