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Monday, November 23, 2015


We wait wondering,
November morning light in my livingroom
wanting no change,
yet expecting one.

We wait while,
how life goes on,
amid this pain.

We wait watching,
one another's

We wait willingly,
for one another,
hoping for relief.

We wait while loving,
Joan with all our hearts,
knowing we will always do so,
hoping she will always know.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Index Cards

Just love these little guys
I write lists on index cards, every night before I go to sleep. Upon I waking, I then write a modified list on a new index card.

This has been my way for decades. Sometimes the lists are for what really needs to be accomplished, sometimes it is what I hope to finish (if days were 36 hours long instead of the skimpy 24).

Perhaps you are familiar with this method of list writing?

Usually, my lists are of the practical sort; wash kitchen floor, make cookies, can tomatoes, laundry, etc. Practical may be my middle name, right next to: use what I have.

I have always attributed my index card habit to my ability to sleep well. I write it all down, fall asleep knowing until tomorrow, all will be well.  I find it peaceful, as though someone else has it in hand for the night.

Lately, I have taken to writing down things of concern which I have found I have little control over, so along with , say laundry, I now write; pray for women and children around the world caught in slave trade, right before clean the bathrooms, or for people caught in war torn countries, before weed the flower beds.

Sometimes, what I write is closer to home:  pray my children will be friends, as no other people  will understand where they came from as clearly as their siblings, before, repaint the kitchen, adding think of others first. then, replace tile by front door, as one of the tiles are loose.

Perhaps it is pie in the sky, or irrational, quite possibly both, but maybe it does make a difference. At the very least, it heightens my level of intention.

So I am hoping, when opportunity presents itself,  I will not shy away from working towards something better, something kinder, something much more important than me. Because at the end of the day, all we have is the sum of our actions, and how we treat one another.

Besides, I do love those clean white index cards, and how they allow me to have some order in this chaotic world.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

John Keats at 24

Today, as Writer's Almanac has informed me, is the day John Keats wrote the ode to autumn.  He was 24 years old when he whipped this poem off.

I aspire to this beauty
I do love apples.

It was lovely then, and it is lovely now, so for your reading pleasure:

To Autumn
(a very young)
 John Keats

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss'd cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core"

Friday, September 11, 2015

Morning Message

The very tea bag message thing (what is that called?)
Found this morning:

hard words hanging over,
worse then if
I had been drinking,
from night before.

Found this morning:

a message on teabag,
I eagerly read,
looking for wisdom

Found this morning:

a stone softening,
leaking the
milk of human kindness.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Tangled Love

Sweet Peas in my garden. 

No love is a straight shot. It is circuitous, at best. It is tiny strands of thoughts, feelings, and efforts.

All of which often, read almost always, misfire, misdirect, miscommunicate, the giver's intention.

Love for; family members, friends, spouses, children, strangers, potential mates, or next door neighbors, even if you lived there for years and years, can go only as far as the receiver will accept or as well as the giver can communicate.

As a result, or at least in my case, it is missed, misunderstood, or unrequited, and in the worse case scenarios, despised. Which makes the threads, even more tangled then the thousands of fine threads in a wastrel sewing basket, which I of course, have encountered, frequently.

Then there are the moments, the tiny little moments, where the tight knots, loosen, and threads that were not salvageable, slide into alignment. Making possibilities.

It is the possibilities that I look for, nay seek. Seek with  certain curiosity, wondering how the story will turn out. It is with patience  I watch, delightfully caught off guard, and experience with tentative disbelief, while hopefully, accepting the gift given.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

From Whence

From whence one sees
Thought provoking cup of tea. 

Varies with
each moment we are 

Born newly, 
not only once 
in this  life.

Life changing
lead to movement

though really,
could be 

Seconds splaying
insights of perspective.

Perspective gives way,
the variable, 
which allows for
understanding others. 

Wednesday, August 26, 2015


I have always wanted a Dutch door, so far, only in my dreams.

Words linked 
like door hinges.

back & forth,
between us,
leaving me wondering.

us to each other.

I've always loved
Dutch doors,
half open,
half hidden.

you have not. 
they suit you. 

For you are 
expert at:
keeping shut,
what is only
hinted at,
from above. 

Monday, August 24, 2015

Oh Boy.

Sweet Pea from my garden. 
When the day begins, I am almost ready. Ready for the eggs over easy
in the pan, the dishwasher
jungle that must be navigated so I can find the teapot that holds the amber liquid that jump starts my morning.

Clementine awaits expectantly, hoping her breakfast will take priority over mine, she is disappointed one more time.   Fortunately, for her, all is not lost, her kibble is poured out, with measured thoughts, into her bowl. It is then I sit down to my own, breakfast, not kibble.

I view the list written the night before, thinking of several more items that must be added to the 1001 impossible things to be accomplished before bed.

When I was young, summer days lagged slowly in the heat, I picked produce from my mother's garden. Dragging myself into the afternoon, when I would be free to read underneath the willows out back of the house.  My mother's rule was do your chores in the morning, then you are free until dinner. It was a good rule. It motivated us to get the livestock fed, the garden weeded, beds made and kitchen cleaned up, quickly.

Those long afternoons were heaven.

Butternut Squash, which  I also love.

I 'm not sure exactly what happened. Now that I am the adult, the days fly past me, the lists grow longer, the summer afternoons are shorter.

All of this being said, it is glorious to be alive on  summer days.

Friday, August 21, 2015


My loving spouse
All of me,
frizzy hair, broken nails,
painted fingers and clothes,
scattered over time,
belongs to you.

Even when you are not sure.
Even when I'm not sure.
We belong to each other.

Sometimes by default,
Sometimes by choice.
Sometimes by the skin of our teeth.

Monday, June 8, 2015


My buddy Chagall's work
which always cheers me up!

When one's boundaries
have been violated young,
resulting in a suburban sprawl
(like no other)

Reclaiming  them when one is old(er)
is a task of
Herculean proportions.

Each step is evaluated,
each request...

each moment

When Saint Ignatius says:
Teach us to give without counting the cost


Shel Silverstein says
give it all away in the
Giving Tree

(a book that has always annoyed me)

Balancing the boundaries
of everyday life can
be confusing.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Twenty-seven years ago today...

A day in May.

Apple blossoms blooming
Twenty-six years ago today this was taken
by Gil Cervelli 
my window as I write,

I am lost in my reverie. 

Red Bud blooms, 
Dandelions burst forth,
(much to my spouses chagrin, but my childish delight),

Daffodils almost spent, 
Tulips limping along,
     till the peonies
are brought forth by small ants 
eating their way to beauty.

Twenty-seven years ago,

I did not see any of this spring beauty. 
(it was lost on me, truth be told) 
    another beauty was springing forth, 
       a baby boy. 

Thursday, April 30, 2015

It has been a while...

One of the babies I knit while attempting to understand -
"life, the universe and everything..."

As words have
wondering where to land,

I have been stitching
sentences into seams

   and knitting
nightly with
patterns filled with

what seems
never to be

So the tangible
    smooths the

of my life.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Over the Rainbow

Starting Spring
No rainbow today.
or at least not outside.


Somewhere inside,
the house,
or the inmate's hearts,
is the potential for

Sometimes at the same time,
just like outside.

I'm planting seeds.

Some for Spring,
some for now.

Some for salad,
some for weathering
future storms.

After all, it is a wonderful world,
sprouting green seedlings
and kindness.

I hope.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Mrs. Slattery

It is far from the first snow fall, so it surprises me to find myself thinking of Mrs. Slattery. A small women, of indeterminate age, measurably moving along on her canes each morning. I don't think I knew  why she used canes, as it never came up in conversation,  Plus, I was not comfortable bringing up something she chose to leave unacknowledged.

Midge, as her friends called her, but not me, a lowly student, manned the bookstore in my high-school. Need a pencil, notebook, science book or tickets for the latest event? She was the person to see, only, not many people seemed to see her, or me, which is why, one day in the still hallway that faced the courtyard and the snow falling, we had a conversation.

My classmates often complained about how long it took her get the items they had forgotten and needed now. She either did not hear their remarks said under the breath or choose to ignore them. I marveled at her unflappability, which I had not yet mastered, but sorely needed to, if I was to survive.

So, when I did need an item from the bookstore, I would only approach her window when I first arrived at school, 7 :10 am, as I lived far away so had to come earlier then most, or at the end of the day, after the crowd had cleared out, to the various activities I did not participate in, but before the bus would cart me back home

One day, as I waited for her to retrieve the Spanish workbook for me, I saw falling out the window the first snowflakes of the year. I said to myself, more then to Mrs. Slattery, "Oh look, the first snow".

" I love the first snow" she responded with a smile as she placed the workbook on the counter.
"I do too", I replied, returning her smile.

From that time forward, I would always make sure I stopped by the bookstore on the first snow, to say hello. We would exchange knowing smiles, and look out into the courtyard and exchange the various reasons we enjoyed winter.

After I graduated from high school, Mrs. Slattery sent me in the mail a graduation card with twenty dollars in it, and a handwritten note:

"Dear Naomi,
I have enjoyed your company these  four years. You never knew how much your visits to me meant.
My husband and I had been in a terrible accident, which he did not survive, and I was sentenced to these canes.  He and I loved the first snow falls together, when you said  to me you love the first snow, it was the anniversary of our marriage, and I was missing him terribly. I felt you had been sent to help me through.
Good luck and thank you,
Midge Slattery"

Every year, for many years, Mrs. Slattery sent me a card on the day of the first snowfall, to say hello and see how I was getting on. One winter, no card arrived or any there after.

 I've always hoped it meant she was with her husband once again, and they were admiring the first snowfalls together.