Sunday, December 31, 2017

Sunday's Found Poem

Words found in order from the KJV Bible in Hebrews 4: 12-16.  The knowledge that I can come boldly has been such a wonderful comfort to me.

In Need

The Word is quick
and powerful
piercing the heart;
Come boldly
obtain mercy
and grace.

by Donna JT Smith

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Deja Vu Blogfest

Here's a repost of something posted earlier in the year, that I thought worthy of another look, or a look once, maybe you missed it.
DL Hammons is hosting this Deja Vu Blogfest, so go on over and check out the links to the best posts of 2017 that you may have missed.  Sign up yourself!  Find your post you thought was missed by many or deserves another look and read!

Here's mine from October 9, 2017:

Good Morning, Sunshine!

When I wrote the title, it suddenly came to me that my mother used to say that to me in the morning when I awoke.  I could almost hear her happy voice saying, "Good morning, Sunshine!" to me.  I wonder if I was "sunshine" in the morning, or if she was just trying to "make it so"!  Ah, we'll never know. At any rate, I'm sitting here in the dark of morning, having just brewed some coffee atop our billowing painter's wrap countertop.  And I am going to go have me some...
Note paper cup...I don't have a sink in the kitchen, so we're minimizing the inconvenience of washing dishes when and where we can!
Okay, I had to change to a real cup...I'll go to the trouble of washing it.  Coffee is more welcoming this way!

Welcome, Fall Morning

The dark
Is so much
Later in the morning;
My coffee stares up at me
With its large unblinking brown eye
Wondering why
I would wake it up
Before the sun;
And I have No Answer,
Except that I want
To be there to greet the
New day
As it inches its way
Through the parting leaves of maples,
When it sends shafts of light
Between the birches,
To set their skin aglow;
And finally lifts the
Blackness to reveal the green
Of spruce and hemlock;
I will be there to feel it cut through the cold
Drafts of air to arrive at my
As I stand
With my
Warm welcome home
In my hands.

by Donna JT Smith

Though I don't think we will see much sun today, I'm up and waiting anyway!
Have a wonderful day!
Reflecting on a cup of coffee.

Sunday, December 24, 2017

KJV Found - Flourish

My found poem this Sunday, is from Psalm 92: 12-14 in the King James Version of the Holy Bible.  Please enjoy it with me here first.  Then my poem follows with words taken in order from the verse to make a new poem, always attempting to keep the meaning and truth of the Bible intact.

Psalm 92:12-14King James Version (KJV)
12 The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree: he shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon.
13 Those that be planted in the house of the Lord shall flourish in the courts of our God.
14 They shall still bring forth fruit in old age; they shall be fat and flourishing;


The righteous 
shall grow
in the house
of God;
In old age
they shall be

by Donna JT Smith, 2017

My word in 2018 for my year-long focus is "FLOURISH".  (So far, anyway - I think it is going to work!)

Have a blessed and joyous Christmas.  If Santa comes to your house tonight, that is truly wonderful.  If Jesus comes, that is the ultimate flourish.  My wish for you is that you flourish this coming year.

Look for and count your blessings.
They surround you.
Rockland's lobster trap and buoy Christmas tree

Friday, December 22, 2017

New One Little Word?

I've been contemplating a new word for my 2018 focus.  Two years ago it was BOLD.  Last year I had REACH.  I had words a couple of years before that, but I mostly forgot them mid-January until I struck BOLD.
I'm mulling now, what the future holds and what would be an appropriate focus for me, and I am almost ready to sign up to foster a word.
Starbucks has an ornament this Christmas that says "FLOURISH", and I keep being drawn to it.  I'm not sure I like it yet, but it almost seems to have chosen me.  I wonder why?  Am I to flourish or find ways to flourish - to grow even though I'm at a time of life when you don't really think of growing or branching out.  Am I to add a flourish to things - a bit of a wave of the hand, a curlicue, a cherry on top?  Am I to help others to flourish?  And then there's the musical flourish.

I bought the ornament.  It's on my tree now.
And I'm trying out "flourish" this week.  Let's see if Christmas can be done with a flourish.


You wonder what there is to do?
In want of something curlicue?
Find something bleak, then give it flair;
Give it sparkle if you dare.
Embellish plain and duty-bound,
Adding glitz to what you've found. 
When there's a scarcity of cheer
Wave a hand dispelling fear.
Give a flourish, nourish souls,
In your mundane daily strolls.
We all have something more to give -
A bit of shimmer through the sieve.

by Donna JT Smith

And I shall stop there. Hershey's Kisses are always good to shut me up!

But one question still... where could you add a flourish today?  Will you?
I vacuumed today.  That was the mundane.  But I added my "Flourish" ornament to my tree... my first flourish, and it isn't even 2018 yet... way to be BOLD and REACH!
Oh, and I made sure to get outside for "flourish the frisbee" time with the dog.  Both the dog and I need it!

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Found Poem - Luke 2

On Sunday's I take a part from the KJV Bible and basically cross out, until I find my poem, in order, but do not change meanings.
Today's found poem is from Luke Chapter 2, verses 1 through 19.

Luke 2: 1-19

To shepherds in the fields
The angel said, "Go, see."
When they had seen,
they told.
All that heard wondered;
But Mary pondered.

by Donna JT Smith

Friday, December 15, 2017


On Tuesday, I had been sick, and though I felt better, I remained sick until yesterday morning.  I ate my first real food since Saturday afternoon.  It was a glorious breakfast.  I like how good food tastes and feels when you haven't had much more than juice and tea and maybe a bit of applesauce and a handful of Cheerios (oh, I'm so glad those are gluten free - though they don't work on a low carb diet - but who cares when that's all that wants to be in your tumbly).

At any rate, at some points I felt a little better and wrote.  This write was one response to a picture I'd seen of high heels.  You may have been here on Tuesday, in which case I apologize for putting you through the poem again.  If not, here you go, sans apology!

This also was put in my head I think, because of what a dear teacher friend had said to me once years ago.  The first day she saw me, I came into school for my interview.  I had on open toed heels (I was young and wanted to make a good impression for my interview).  They weren't all that tall, but they were heels.  She remembered wondering if I'd wear heels to teach.  I never wore them again.  Heels to teach first grade?  That would be stupid!  Of course, sensible shoes and clothing good for floor sitting would be the choice from that day forward...since I did get the job.  The shoes did their job for that interview - or maybe they hired me in spite of my shoes...
photo credit: Tom the Photographer - Unsplash

Well Heeled

life started
frivolously heeled,
then grounded
became the norm.
Who walks on forest paths
in heels?
Who runs on beaches
drilling into sand?
Who climbs a mountain,
pushes a swing, jumps rope,
or wades in puddles
on tiptoes of patent leather?
Who sits any taller
curled in a beanbag
with goodnight story?
frivolously heeled
is for our tea party.

by Donna JT Smith

And I guess the title is kind of a play on words - and mistyped even when I first wrote it - Well Healed - because I am feeling quite well today.  No soup for supper tonight!
Let's go see what Diane has for links today at Random Noodling where Poetry Friday is being hosted!

After reading Diane's post, I thought, why do I say so much sometimes.  Perhaps I should play:

Frivolous heels
grounded -
my feet on
forest paths
on beaches
sunken into sand
atop mountains
kicking up over ropes
swirling through puddles
curled beneath to listen
to goodnight prayers -
until the next
tea party.

on wooded paths
on sandy beaches
on mountain rocks
over spinning jump ropes
through muddy puddles
for goodnight prayers

Just some thoughts.  What do you think?

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Poem and Winter Chair

Ginger is in a duplicate of my chair.  She likes it, too.

I sat awake in my winter chair all night, unless I was pacing or going elsewhere...  for the second night this week, and it's only Tuesday.  I am going to be ultra careful of what I put in my stomach today.  I'll wait until something has been in there for at least an hour before I try something light and new.  And I'll nap.  Lots.

The thing I am struck with though, is that a number of lines came to me that were supposed to be written down in a poem.  They just suddenly showed up and flowed through my brain, but I had nowhere to write and nothing to write with, and I just didn't have the sense to hold onto it for long at all.  I had to just let it go.  But I know it was, well, I remember feeling like it was good at the time.  But it was somewhere between 2 am and 3:30 am I believe and my mind wasn't holding onto much.  I wish I'd been able to write it down to keep, but at the same time I am strangely happy that it at least came to me for a little while.

Ending this strange post today.  Needing a nap and some ginger.  Reversed order.

life started
frivolously heeled,
then grounded
became the norm.
Who walks on forest paths
in heels?
Who runs on beaches
drilling into sand?
Who climbs a mountain,
pushes a swing, jumps rope,
or wades in puddles
on tiptoes of patent leather?
Who sits any taller
curled in a beanbag
with goodnight story?
frivolously heeled
is for our tea party.

by Donna JT Smith

I used some of the thoughts I think I had and added to them.  Or I created this from scratch.  I really don't know.  Either way, I hope it makes you smile.  It is noon.  Naptime.  It is snowing.  Winter chair is waiting.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Winter Chair

It is Monday and there is snow on the ground.  It is cold.  I have been sick again.  Feeling quite a bit better this afternoon.  Tired from staying up all night Saturday into Sunday.  Slept well last night though.  Still catching up on sleep and may take a nap in just a bit.  The sun is beautiful today.  I like how it is warm through the windows.

Haiku to the winter: its sun and my chair:
Winter Chair

Blanketed in sun
Winter chair fits to a tea
Warming words and heart. 

It is not yet winter, and not yet 2018.  I had a year to write a poem a day, and I got off track.  I am going to go back over the year and see how much I got off track, and how much I actually did write.  Oh, I should count all the poems I did for the two books I wrote.  That is a fair number right there.  And I need to remember what I wrote and put on other blogs throughout the year.  So maybe I'm not terribly, horribly awful at keeping my resolution of a poem a day.  It may not have been a poem a day, but some times there were a number of poems in one day!

I am going to look back by Dec. 31 and see what the count is.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Sunday's Found Poem: Haiku

Psalm 139

Thou knowest my thought
Made in secret, unperfect;
Precious are thy thoughts!

by Donna JT Smith

Found poem: a haiku from Psalm 139, KJV Bible.

Friday, December 8, 2017

Poetry Friday

The moon is gorgeous tonight. I'm feeling better. So good day all around.

A lemon haiku for today:

lemony moon rose
tonight's journey well crafted
across starry maze

by Donna JT Smith

I had a package from my Winter Exchange in the mail when I returned from PA!  Michelle Kogan sent me a too-cute package which I meant to take a picture of before ripping it open.  It was red tissue with straw raffia ribbon.  I set it aside to take a picture at least with the wrapping, but before I could do that, my cat discovered it and ate half the straw.  Then he threw it up on the basement stairs for me since it didn't settle well he said.  So I didn't get a picture of the wrapping.  It was gross by the time I got to it.

But the insides are still wonderful!

So I took two pictures...

Inside was a small handstitched journal with a beautiful picture by Michelle on the cover.  I am going to have to decide carefully what it is that I want to write in it.  I don't know that it feels enough like a "draft" book!  I may have to save it and carry it around for "fancy lines" that come to  me on the go, or "done deals" that I just want all in one place.  Decisions!
Thank you, Michelle, for the beautiful journal!

And then there is the colorfully illustrated poem, An Ode for a Northeastern Wood Turtle:

My favorite lines:
"If you see me in the wild, take my pic,
draw my portrait, my vivid neck - quick!"
A great warning plea from the turtle...scram!

We have wood turtles around here, and I always feel bad for them as I see them crossing the road.  Most people are pretty careful though and they are slow enough to avoid, so you hardly ever find one hit by a car!  We have local handpainted signs up along the road warning people from away about the turtles.  We even have a welcome turtle who greets visitors to our town.  Many a picture has been taken beside the turtle, who also gets dressed up on occasion for weddings, birthdays and new babies in town!

Thanks, Michelle, for your thoughtful gift, and amazing ode that reminds us of the wood turtle's plight!  Thanks to Tabatha Yeatts for creating and organizing this fun winter sport!

My winter exchange partner will be waiting for a package for just a tiny bit longer... so if you don't have anything yet, it could be me for whom you are waiting!  It's coming! I haven't forgotten!

And on a side note:

I got a copy of the book of poems I wrote for my grandson this Christmas. It needed a few edits, which I did and reordered for him.  He doesn't read my blog, so I'm safe saying it!  I received the book I made for my grand daughter a couple of weeks ago.  Both are books of poems which I hope they will enjoy over the years.  I have made my "photo" book into "trade" versions and ebooks.  The picture books are large, and relatively expensive, so the trade books are the way to go it appears.  The kids got the "photo" books, since they were a special gift.  You can take peek at the book "It's in Our Nature" here, and It's All About the Little Things here. I have to talk with Amazon Kindle and get the ebook for Kindle straightened out, but the iBook transferred just right for my iPad!


Please visit Lisa at Steps and Staircases for more links to poetry today and all week!

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Spiritual First Thursday

Today's hostess, Irene Latham, is gathering us to reflect on our OLW for this year.  Mine is REACH.
It was a "stretch" for me to pick this word.  I don't see myself as a "REACHER".  And now looking at that word - with the er - it reminds me of the word "TEACHER", and perhaps I am wrong.  Perhaps I've always been a reacher, at least as soon as I became a teacher.

This past Sunday at church a boy, about 10 years old, sat next to me.  He had intended to sit in the pew in front of us as he usually does, but it was filled.  He is one that sometimes comes to church with another family, and he has energy to spare, and not many boundaries in his life.  When he comes to church, he sits in the pew with two other boys right in front of us.  Having him sit in front of me is always a challenge, to me - he's fine with it.  I want to tell him to sit still, be quiet, stop poking others, etc.  But I resist. I'm always quiet and try to focus on the message instead, despite the flurry of activity in my peripheral, and not so peripheral, vision.

But this afternoon, as he came in, he unexpectedly plunked down beside me, disappointed that he wasn't sitting in the pew ahead of me that was already filled with three boys his age.  He stretched a few times, and wiggled a bit, but for the most part was able to sit pretty still.

At the end of the service, as he was getting up, I asked him if sometimes he had trouble in school sitting still.  He said he did.  I told him some "grounding" techniques and asked if he'd heard of doing those before.  He had.  I suggested that he try them at church and told him how I appreciated how still he had been beside me and that sometimes when he is laughing and moving around during church, it is hard for me to pay attention.  He appeared to be listening.  I smiled and thanked him again and he smiled back.  Then I asked him if he had any trouble with eating chocolate.  His grin got wide, "No.  No, I don't have ANY problems with chocolate!"  Ah, he WAS listening.

I repeated my thanks for sitting so still during the service, reached into my bag and handed him the chocolate mini M & M's I had stashed in my bag for months - I guess for just this occasion!  And I told him he was welcome to sit with us any time.

He probably never will. And it may even take a few years for him to reach into the recesses of his memories and pull out this event again.  But maybe he will someday, and he will understand that someone reached out to him and tried to help.  Sometimes your reach isn't felt immediately.  Sometimes it is cumulative reaches.  Sometimes it is a delayed realization that you were reached for.

Sometimes I'm not even sure when I've reached or touched.  And I don't need to.

I've found since I had the word REACH, when in doubt about whether or not I should REACH OUT, I've begun to default to REACH.  And it feels good.  It goes well with the word BOLD from the year before, and both are beginning to mold my life into more active, fun and unexpectedly rewarding days.


When you try
to touch the sky,
sometimes you do,
but even if you don't,
you are happy that you
slowed down and stretched
up high and smiled
with the sun or rain
on your face. 

by Donna JT Smith, 2017

Saturday, December 2, 2017

Saturday's Poetry Friday

I know it is not Friday.  It is Saturday.  But all day yesterday I was driving back from PA alone, and could neither post nor write.  I did write these two poems to go with Laura's 15 words or less on Thursday with the picture of the empty bike rack.  I was busy that day too, so never got to put them on her site.  And I'm kind of sick today, so this is getting late in the day.   It's hard to concentrate.

First thought was of why a bike rack would be empty in summer...
then fall..

Summer Bike Rack

Feet pumping
Heart thumping
Tangled hair
Without a care -
Empty rack
Till they're back!

Fall Bike Rack

Empty rack,
Winter's back!
Sled replaces,
Bike races;
Leaves swirling
No whirling
And steel!

Well, let's see who's hosting today.  I just have to hold it together for a few more minutes, and I'll have a  post.
Okay, got it!  Mary Lee Hahn is hosting the roundup at A Year of Reading.  Please treat yourself to some tea and poetry today and all week!
Now I'm going to lie down.

Z is for Zoetic

Good Words Alphabetically: Z is for Zoetic Ah, z end of z month... I'm going to miss writing a poem and drawing every day.  Perhaps I wi...