Seven Years

4-25-2014

The picture above popped up in my memory feed today on Facebook. Already feeling out of sorts, this added fuel to my sad fire. But it also was fuel for my poem today.The prompt was “thought” . So, I thought, as if I wasn’t already thinking, about how long and how short seven years are.

Thoughts on Seven Years
 
seven years ago we moved to a new state
it was not our choice
but that’s okay

and though there is such a thing called the seven years war
that’s not what we fought
in fact, many of those seven years were good ones
years of plenty like in Joseph’s dream
and Joseph's life
but years of plenty
soon became lean years, rawboned and grievous 

though we enjoyed hiking through the beauty of fall colors
and a few snow-angel winter snows
and spring on the back porch
there was much loss
the demise of three parents while we were away
longing to be with them

even though we often languished
in the city where we tried so hard
to belong
we were together

we finally migrated back home 
but one month later
you left
for your eternal home
and I try not to wither away
without you

Everything tells a story: Leaves

Wakulla Springs State Park – December, 2020

There is a Story

leaves with beauty in their death
carpet the forest floor
layer on layer each year

brilliant reds and oranges
fade to browns
return to the earth

water droplets
ornament the needles
of a sapling in the woods

there is a story here
of death and new life
an old story retold

the trill of a bird
like laughter
sweet and short

a soft reminder 
of joy in the morning
there is a story here

Lord willing

Crowded Parchment

Today I went for two hikes in the Florida woods. I’m staying at the Lodge at Wakulla Springs State Park for what would have been our 42nd anniversary. Chuck would have enjoyed these hikes -no snakes, beautiful fall weather and lovely colors.

When the so-called pandemic hit, hiking kept me sane. The fresh air and exercise were a balm to my spirit. They still are. Now most of my walks are in the neighborhood with my dog, Ruby. But I can still find beauty there. And it still does me good.

We had so many plans. A trip to New England, concerts, spending time with the grandkids. I am learning now to say “Lord willing” more often when I talk of what I hope/plan to do. It is still a learning process to go it alone. I’m used to hiking alone and taking trips alone, but it’s the eating alone I have to work on. While I’ve been at the lodge I’ve been taking a book with me to the dining room/restaurant. I’m currently reading our book club’s selection, The Secret Diary of Hendrick Groen, 83 1/2 Years Old, which is quite entertaining.

I guess my thoughts have wandered around a bit in this post. The thoughts and words put together here are kind of like a crowded parchment.

Escaping Irma 2017

View from Grandpa’s shoulders

This photo popped up in my memories feed on Facebook today. It does, yet doesn’t, seem like three years ago that Claire and the kids stayed with us while Ben went home to weather the storm of Irma. The storm where my brother-in-law lost all he had except for a few handfuls of memorabilia and later some rescued muddy clothes.

I hope E and J always have precious memories of Grandpa. Carrying them on his shoulders, reading to them, playing chess, hiking, praying. I pray that one day they will desire to follow in the footsteps of the one some described as a gentle giant.

I Walk

IMG_7645

Bring Your Love to Me -The Avett Brothers

Like I said in my last post, God’s Word, poetry, sunshine, and fresh air get me through these uncertain days. Today’s prompt from NaPoWrimo was to write a poem based on a “walking archive”.  Those of you who follow me here or on Instagram  know I post a lot of pictures of things I find on my walks and hikes, so this one was a natural prompt for me.

I Walk 

I walk for sunshine
I walk for sanity
I walk to remind myself
Of Pippa’s song
God’s in His heaven
All’s right with the world
Even when it feels all wrong
I find a dandelion
And think of Ray Bradbury
And The Avett Brothers
And blow my wishes
to scatter the seeds
I observe moss on the rocks
And dream of the fairies who visit at night
Knowing it’s all pretend
Think of how we used to pretend
Give each other different names
Like Twenty-One Pilots
And I hum the song
Wish we could turn back time
I catch the sun
Filtering through the trees
Making shadows on my arm
While the birds sing
A song I do not know
I see beauty in the wildflowers
Beauty in the ruins
And I walk on
Ruby by my side
Man’s best friend
And mine, too.

Tell the truth now

Coffee_at_Friendlys_Restaurant

photo By Tomwsulcer

 

My husband recently used one of my favorite songs- Tell the Truth to Yourself– against me. We were discussing our diets and he claimed I put a LOT of cream in my coffee, to which I argued that I did NOT. He grinned at me and said,  “Tell the truth to yourself.”

I must confess I kinda did the same thing months ago with the line “I lied to the doctor”, teasing him because he tries to be so good with his eating the week before he goes in for lab work.

All joking aside, it’s not easy to tell the truth to yourself. To face the music. Lately I’ve had to admit to myself that I am no spring chicken, whatever that is.  I can still hike, but some days I go pretty slow. I have to be careful when I’m playing chase with Ruby. And when I dance in the kitchen.

There is a Bible verse that says “And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” (John 8:32).  I don’t mean to just take this out of context, but I think the words can be applied here somewhat. Knowing the truth and telling the truth to ourselves seems quite similar. I think that when we are honest with ourselves and with each other, there is a peace and freedom that comes with that truth. 

 

There’s Hope For Sure

IMG_7070 - Edited

Red Mountain Park 2/22/20

 

In the middle of a very rainy winter, when it seems like spring will never come, I welcome the sunshine. I head to Red Mountain Park and am never disappointed. There, amidst the lifeless flora, I can always find some green. Sometimes a flower, even though IMG_7054considered a weed, peeps out below my feet to remind me that spring will come.

I find the abandoned railroad tracks where trees have grown up in the middle.

IMG_7060 - Edited

When my mind is burdened with thoughts and decisions that need to be made, I can find a calm. Though I return home with those decisions still unmade, the burden seems less. I not only have the assurance of spring, but the assurance that my future is in God’s hands, just like spring.

IMG_7061

See, you can only live one day at a time
Only drive one hot rod at a time
Only say one word at a time
And only think one thought at a time
And every soul is alone when the day becomes night
And there in the dark if you can try to see the light
In the most pitch black shape of the loneliest shadow
Well then you ought to sleep well
‘Cause there’s hope for sure

High Steppin’/The Avett Brothers

 

 

Hello, Goodbye

Word Art 17

So, I was talking to 2019:

She said, “Goodbye”

I said, “High.”

She said, “Low.”

“But, these are my goals for 2020,”  I told her. “If not high, at least higher. In three categories: books read, miles hiked, blog posts written. So, 2019, let’s take a look and you’ll see what I mean.”

“With you, I read or listened to 43 books. That averages 3 1/2 a month. With you, I hiked 132 miles. That’s an average of only 2 1/2 a week. With you, I wrote 67 blog posts. That’s about 5 1/2 a month.”

She said, “Why?” And I said, “I don’t know” 

She said, “Stop”.

I said,  “Okay. I’m done with you. Finished. You are kaput!”

So, I talked to 2020 for a bit.

“Hey, 2020!” I said,  “Hello, hello, hello.”

I said, “Go, go, go.” At first she misunderstood me.  

“No, no, don’t go away. I mean go WITH me. We’ve got some goals to take care of to beat 2019. We need to read at least four books a month. And hike at least 3 miles a week.  And write at least six posts a month.” 

2020 said, “Yes.”