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Thursday, August 18, 2011

A Great Day to Be Born!

in the early
morning hours
a Boy
slipped into
this world
so early
that
 he barely
missed
any part
of the day.
It was a great day to be born!

Chocolate cows quietly grazed on
Morning dewed fragrant green fields, and
Steaming fog lifted from night cooled meadows and ponds,
While the sun glistened on feathery tassels of golden corn
And giant puffy white whipped cream clouds floated in
A blueberry sky.
It was a beautiful day to be born!

but in the room 
Little Eyes
only 
saw
shadowy
figures,
eyes
and 
smiles
and 
heard 
soft voices
and felt
caressing
hands
softly
stroking
his oh, so,
soft face.

 It was a lovely day to be born!

Outside, the wide world was beckoning
‘Please, come out and play!
There is a world of wonder awaiting you.'
It was a wonderful day to be born!

but the
world of wonder
will still 
be there
tomorrow.
right now
he is
OUR
World of Wonder!
It was a glorious day to be born!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Our Grandson

Meet the newest member of the family; our first grandchild, Felix! What a handsome dude!
He waited to arrive until after our 8 hour drive. We got there at 2 am and he arrived at 4:15 am, weighing in at 7 lb. 3 oz. and standing 20 inches tall... if he could stand.
You know there has to be a poem in here somewhere! Just wait until I get some sleep! I've been up all night.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Smiling On Life


I took this picture of my son and his grandmother at our niece's wedding on Saturday.

Son
Of mine
Once so small
Smiling on life
Caped superhero
Defender of the weak
A sentry, righter of wrongs
“How are you?” I’d ask. “Pretty fine.”
I listened in awe and watched with pride
As he grew into a fine gentleman
Devoted to family and friends
Loving, giving, caring for all
Secure in his convictions
Trustworthy and honest
Life smiles on him, too
Quiet and strong
I smile to
Think of
Him

Monday, August 15, 2011

Was It by Chance?

The Terzanelle is a poetry type, which is a combination of the villanelle and the terza rima forms.  It is a 19-line poem consisting of five interlocking triplets/tercets plus a concluding quatrain in which the first and third lines of the first triplet appear as refrains.  The middle line of each triplet is repeated, reappearing as the last line of the succeeding triplet with the exception of the center-line of the next-to-the-last stanza which appears in the quatrain.  Each line of the poem should be the same metrical length.


Was It by Chance?


Was it by chance
You’d understand?
Was it by chance?

Just for today
Someone was here,
You’d understand.

How would you know
With foreign ears?
Someone was here

Offering love
Within our doors
With foreign ears

Extending hands
Beyond a voice
Within our doors,

A kindred voice.
Was it by chance
Your first day here?
Was it by chance?

A muslim woman came to our church yesterday.  She spoke very little English.  We have a small congregation.  Was it by chance that we had two other people visiting us also for the first time who could speak some Arabic?  What are the chances?

Thursday, August 11, 2011

I'd Give It a Ten

I am one day late for the August 10 for 10: Authors I Just Can't Live Without listing, but thought I'd like to do it anyway.  I may not be teaching now, but I still love picture books, and so will grandchildren when they arrive!
So here's my list of books I love to read to kids.  Some are old, some are newer, and the last I actually haven't read yet, but I'm pretty sure it will be a favorite after watching David Wiesner's video about it on his site.
So because it is the 11th day of August, I've listed 11 of my favorites.  They are old favorites.  I wasn't going for newer, so don't be critical.  These books are still good!
Besides, I'm tired.  I've spent all day yesterday standing in fog and mist watching while I have someone else's septic tank get cleaned and then doing a house inspection.  We'd better get this house.  I have a lot of money tied up in it already that ultimately will benefit the sellers! 
Today I've spent a couple of hours on the phone and an hour doing a loan application...for the second time.  I've been talking with a variety of banks who would love to work with us, but not the property.  It doesn't have a bathroom, insulation or heat.  It doesn't qualify as a house or a seasonal home. 
After many, many calls, finally one banker referred me to another bank that does construction loans.  I started filling out their online form, as the newest banker told me to do, but silly me...I filled out the construction loan application which said that I didn't qualify for this type of loan.  Another call to the loan officer.  No, check mortgage loan even though it will be a construction loan.  And finally, success!  We are in.  The mortgage loan officer has the information she needs, and is very optomistic about this route.  More on this later.

Miss Smith's Incredible Story Book by Michael Garland
Elmer by David McKee
A Campfire for Cowboy Billy by Wendy Ulmer
Trouble with Trolls by Jan Brett
Little Rabbit's Loose Tooth by Lucy Bates
Stellaluna by Janell Cannon
The Art Lesson by Tomie De Paola
Miss Rumphius by Barbara Cooney
A Chair for my Mother by Vera Williams
Little Mouse's Painting by Diane Wolkstein
Art and Max by David Wiesner

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Thistles by the Sea

Thistles by the Sea


Braving fog that's coming in
Thistles by the sea
Fog hovers o'er the sea and land
And settles in on me.

Surging in to shore
Comes a misty roll
It overtakes my being
And reaches to my soul.

Don your bright sou'wester
Breathe deep the salty air
As foggy day approaches
To dampen tousled hair.

Wafting through the mist
Sounds a distant horn
Moans within the cloud
All sailors to forewarn.

Tomorrow will dawn brighter
For thistles by the sea
Lifting prickled leaves and head
They'll host a cautious bee.

The sun will kiss the waves
The fog will lift at last
And sailors will go out to sea
Their nets again to cast.

And thistles by the sea
Live on forevermore
Through wind and wave and fog
They'll stand beside the shore.


*************************************
My grandparents were "Thistles", as was I.  They came here by ferry from Newfoundland just after they had their first child.  My grandfather was a seal hunter, sent out at the age of 10 or 13 to work on a seal boat; a fisherman and a lobsterman.  The Thistles have always lived by the sea.  And that is what this poem is really about.
I took the picture of the thistles at the edge of the sea, near our (hopefully) new/old cottage...which we are in the process of buying.


Thursday, August 4, 2011

Waiting for Someone

The house sits alone
Waiting for someone
Who will not come;
A sealed box.
Open it tenderly.
Step quietly
Inside this
Glimpse of
Someone's life:
Clothing missing touches,
Photographs with muted voices,
Chairs dusty and cold,
Books closed and stiff,
Walls with faded, flowered curls.
Each room holding memories
Of someone.
The house sits alone
Waiting for someone
To come
To warm its core
To rekindle life
And love.
We will be
That someone now.

Monday, August 1, 2011

The Circus Was in Town Sunday (and No One Told Me)


It seemed just another Sunday.
As we gathered in the back room though, we were missing five of our twelve choir members.  It was a bit unusual, but we'd manage.  We'd just have to reposition ourselves and sing louder!

We filed in to signal the start of the morning’s message service.  All appeared normal.  But as in a "what's wrong with this picture" page, the differences slowly became apparent.  A couple that was normally two rows from the back on the center aisle was sitting two pews from the front on the side aisle.  A mother and son who were usually in the back pew on the left, were one pew forward of their rightful seats.   It’s not like people own pews or anything, but it’s still somewhat disturbing when people are displaced.  You know that something is up with God.

We sang.  We finished.  Nothing else was different so far . . .
We filed down and slid into to our seats, and the message began.

“Now!” I guess God must have said.

A baby cried.  This baby is usually asleep all the time.
From behind me I heard the low voice of someone, talking to himself.  “Very strange,” I thought.

And then the others came in . . . first a woman juggling a doughnut, a milk, a purse and a can.  She came down the center aisle as the preacher spoke and sat in the very front pew.  Then two men, carrying tall, slurpy drinks with straws joined her.  Shortly after that another man, followed by a second woman came in with their jumbo drinks and settled in with the rest.  I tried not to watch them, but the activity of those five people caught my attention at various times throughout the message.  A slight attitude of irritation had grown within me at their seemingly blatant rudeness. They looked like they were ready to watch the circus, not worship or learn about God.

They ate and drank, and looked at each other and nodded.  At one point one man realized he didn’t have a Bible, so he got up and bobbed from pew to pew to find one.  Finally finding one, he quickly ducked back into his front row seat.  Soon his nose needed blowing, and the two women began rummaging around in their purses.  No tissues, I guess.  He got up and went up to the altar, passing the preacher on the way, to get a tissue from a box placed up on the altar’s edge. 

The doughnut and milk finished, a can was pulled out.   “Snap, swish, fizz” the pull top was yanked open. One could only pray that it was a power drink.

The man’s nose required another tissue.  Why hadn’t he gotten two while he was up there?

At some point in all this I found my heart changing.  I listened to a small Voice inside of me, reassuring me that all was right.  Drinks continued to be slurped, purses poked and whispers whispered.  People were trying their best not to be distracted.  We were actually on our very best behavior.  I began to grin.  I remember the feeling of contentment and happiness starting to well up, and I knew God was doing a great work.  Shame on me.  I watched with a new attitude.

As the girlfriend was vying for the attention of her boyfriend to show him something in her wallet, I noticed that his eyes and attention kept going to the preacher.  He was looking past her.  He was listening past her.  The man who had gotten up for tissues and a Bible was finding passages as they were read aloud.  He was still slurping his giant green drink, but he was also caught up in the words that were being spoken.

At the end of each service, people may come up to join the church, ask to be baptized, pray on their own, or ask for prayer.  You may also ask for someone to show you how to be sure you are going to Heaven.

At that altar call three people joined the church . . .
and two men from that group had their names written down in Heaven.

The talker in the back pew came out of his Lotus position and went home. 
The displaced will probably get their pews back next week.

But aren’t circuses great!