Monday, November 21, 2011

An Acquired Patina

The years
rough run over me
face bowed bent knee
earth bound
               corners ruffled
binding loose       am i
a papyrus seeker
                ink  thirsty
creative word      hungry
search for      sustenance

fill my pages
                wrinkled rough
read hard  tear washed

       patina acquired

Patina~ The surface appearance of an object grown
                     especially with age or time.                           


In Praise of the Map Maker


Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a lamp unto my path.
Psalm 119:105

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

In This Family

this family
                we love listen
and action-speak it to life.
In this
we see one another through
                faith-colored glasses
then inspire with hug-words
                and love-verbs.
In this family we live value
                I dream your
dream  in this
as you have become
                  my dream
In this family.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Give Me.

Give me
a gratitude heart bursting dancing leaps
arms stretched twirls
Give me
eyes to see pure little girl seeking freedom
sighs so heavy released relenting 
smiles light luminous
her am I little girl long loved
the daughter wandering
hunger gone
sweet sensation raspberry red
am I
I am
my Lover soft said


Monday, September 26, 2011

Fruits of My Salvation

They say
                from the voices
                from   the   cliff
                from   the    whir
                              the brain

an apple a day keeps his needle
                                   at bay...
the doctor
                 or perhaps

a  pomegranate  will  do.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Yes (wo)Man: Living in the Poop-Free Zone

As my adopted Chinese-Crested lies at my feet, and my epileptic highly-allergic blind in one eye bought her in a grocery store parking lot purebred Cocker Spaniel wanders the house probably trying to decide if she should pee inside or outside, I want to whisper some truth to you about my dogs. I am whispering you see, because if I say it loudly enough, I might begin to realize that I am really telling you some very private and otherwise unknown information about


So shhh!

 Now here it is: I realized this morning, as I was dressed in my super-hero cape, and proudly performing my duties as the Yes Woman, that my dogs were happy to follow me around the yard as I cleaned up their stink and didn't even mind taking a sniff or two of it's delicate aroma. Not only did they act as if they had no idea that it was di-sgust-ing, but they seemed to think that the spots I had just cleaned were designed for taking a perfectly public squat in AGAIN. There they were, butt poised for action, ignoring the prominence of my cape, and for that matter my presence, sullying up my poop-free zone. I mean no shame, none, Nada, No Sirree! 

Anyway, I want you to know, I am good for my word, and I cleaned up that doody, and even managed not to step in it. That is until my husband called mid-way through my treadmill extravaganza to ask me if I could do a kindness for TheOneWhoDoesNotLikeME. Yes Woman had stowed her cape so as to not get it caught in the gears of the incline, and Ms.Reticent-to-do-anything-kind started to publicly, well you know...

A wrestling match ensued between Ms. Reticent and our ever amazing Pooper Scooper, and eventually, after some flatulence, a little time change, and an inner scream, the super-hero won out.

Ah, the Italian just called and said his key broke and now he can not start the car. The burly tow man or the Yes Woman? We shall see.

Hope I don't step in it.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Yes (wo)Man: I Could Have had a Pony Ride and Other Lessons in Listening

It is interesting the mystical change that takes place inside of the human mind, when genuinely you think that you have learned at least in some small way to listen, to love, to let someone else lead, or even to allow them to have an opinion, and then all at once you realize that you have just been writing the script in your own thoughts and missing the greater portion of what those you love are trying to communicate. 

And this leads me to the adventure of Day One as the amazing and often hard-of-hearing Yes Woman.

I missed my first two opportunities to say Yes entirely. The words passed through my ear lobes and technically my ear drums worked perfectly, but then mysteriously his words ricocheted off the grey matter numbing it in the process. It was done, over, finis before I even realized I had rebuffed the man once again! And I could have had a pony ride, I mean literally, he wanted me to go for a ride in his classic 66 red mustang convertible. I know, I hear you! Nave. Rube. Call me what you will, but just don't call me quitter.

 I am excited to tell you that another opportunity came my way, and being that my husband must meet with associates from the great state of Kentucky in the early morn, I had the proud and joyful honor of saying YES, YES, YES! 

Yes, I will pick up the dog pooh tomorrow morning.

Now to just remember to follow through, and perhaps sign up for a course in the fine art of listening!

Yes (wo)Man!

I got my husband an electric razor for Father's Day. Completely devoid of any semblance of romance, creativity, or mystery, I know, but way back when, even before I was born, a wise one said that the gift should be something the receiver actually wants. And so, I bought my husband an electric razor for Father's Day.

This is not usually the type of subject I write about, I usually prefer inspiration, encouragement, or on my angsty reflective days I go for, well, angst. But this post is not without purpose, as I have chosen my miniscule, yet mighty group of followers to keep me accountable as I give my husband an additional and perhaps more creative gift. For the next thirty days, I am going to make it my goal to "just say yes," barring of course the illegal and immoral (I mean what is He doing asking for either of those anyway?). 

I have only been married to the Italian for two years, but in my "hey, I'm a big girl, and my half a century of wisdom means I am smarter than you" bad attitude, I find myself saying things like, "No, I don't feel like walking around the park with you," and "What? We have to use those stupid free tickets to sit in prime seats at the local pro-teams game?" 

I am feeling like an old-lady, and soon I may have to go buy, well, granny-panties. So in honor of Jim Carrey in Yes Man, or perhaps as a my own little Love Dare, the stubborn-head Irish girl is going to learn how to say Yes! 

If you care, thrown in between angst and inspiration, I'll keep you posted on how it goes. If you don't care, just don't read, or don't comment, oh wait, I mean just keep doing what you already do...or just say Yes Woman!!! and then I might even smile, and feel so good about myself.

P.S. My husband is one of my followers...but since he is a going to the gym, gotta watch the news at all hours of the day kinda guy, there is little chance my plans will be foiled...(insert evil laugh). We shall see.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Thread Count 400

Wearing my heartbreak
head held
heart hidden
beaneath  pima cotton and
mother of pearl
no care
stitched shamelessly

intrude and escape
hold me together.

Notes on Writing:  The first line of “Thread Count 400” started as “wearing my heartbreak on my collar buttoned too tight sometimes,” jotted quickly on my notepad at home one day. The rest of the writing came several weeks later, rewritten several times—with intermittent consultations from my thesaurus and my fifteen year old daughter. I truly worked this poem on paper, as opposed to letting in run through my brain until it was worthy of the page (at least in my mind). This papyrus editing process is new for me in the poetry realm and was previously used only for greater (read more words) works.

At the time I was working on this reflection, my son was six and suggested that I write a poem on dishes, and so I did. In conclusion, I would like to share it with you for your reading pleasure:

I wishes I didn’t
have to do dishes.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

No Remorse

Life in a shambles on the  ground

                                      at my feet
Memories  in   color   all   a  heap

                              blue and green
                                        acts unseen
Threads lying limply questioning

                                what the cost
                                          battle lost
         Worn well and emptied

                                        no remorse
                                 worthy course
Life in a shambles on the  ground

And so
i did the laundry

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Writer's Remorse

I sat down

and dug from my soul

and laughed

and cried

tore up the papers

the pieces

of my mind


to myself

more than I wanted to


Notes on Writing: Writer’s Remorse was originally birthed as a doodle in a Creative Writing class. It was nestled among notes that read “Inspiration” and “Writing-a sensual activity-Paper and Parchment.” It flowed from my expensive Montblanc pen (a gift) onto my cheap, but serviceable yellow tablet (my own purchase) in one lump sum. I tried to name it "Remember” but later realized that it was truth incarnate of what I was to face if I chose to write again- and so “Writer’s Remorse.”

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Baptism by Fire

I want to belch out these dark days
like a breather of fire
until my lungs are washed
spirit afresh
the goodness
my God so Gracious

breathing in sweet savor alight my soul

Honest Seeker

i am as lost as I have ever been
hope shoots across the sky as heavenward stars
only to leave tear stained valleys on well worn cheeks

suffocating despondency
rote rituals

to get me to the other side of day
make the bed wash the dish feed the pet
stand in the steamy shower
balmy baptismal
weary-washed soul seeking

Need You
Need You


Monday, May 30, 2011


praying for humble

as my fear does a tribal dance

around my pride

as if to protect the last staunch vestiges of


I bow

until the stretching seems ripping tearing

crying aloud my hardened then hungry heart



knees reaching earth

a distance so far



humble she


Thursday, May 26, 2011


This was absolutely the last time the bearer of the seed would give a gift that was singularly meant for her and only her. Seeds that grew into little voices that giggled and whispered and laughed like the gentle murmurs of the sea, with blue eyes that beckoned the same as its reflected white tipped bubble-bath waves. This was the last time. The seed bearer was long gone. Gone by choices of his own it would seem, distant, but still exactly where he was meant to be for this season that seemed so elongated for the one who had always been so delighted by his gifts. Her understanding limited by the daily passing of the yellow softly glistening on the pale strands of her little gifts, and the bluest moon reflected again in innocent eyes.

Day and night was so long for her. Often so long that the voices of the little seeds sounded like noise where musical rhymes had once fallen, and blue eyes beckoning her to dreams so sweet seemed bleak eyes begging for more than she had to offer, and she could not seem to find her own gifts to give.

The littlest seed was not unlike the seed bearer himself. His eyes translucent in colors created to comfort, as if hand-painted by the soft haired tip of a gentle brush wielded by a purposeful artist. And the little seed grew with words that washed the sands on the shore soft, and smiles that made all the other seeds shine more lovely in his presence.

The little seed needed her tending, a word of water, refreshment for stretching arms and roots seeking the solidity of the seed bearer. Shimmering mirror in which to peer and find portraiture of the seed bearer himself. She needed to reach her own arms into the passing yellow and wrap them around the moon so blue and hold the little seed until it stretched strong armed to bear blue eyed giggling gifts drawn innocent as the bearer of the seed, and then to open wide hands beautiful made by the given gifts and release them to bear again.

She needed to give from hands empty, his fullness.

She had thought the seed bearer had left her, his gifts a distant wave washed melody. She had believed his lilting laughter would wash never again eyes turned up to smile upon his goodness. She has believed in his absence no presence could make blue and yellow the symbol of his daily gifts.

She was wrong.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011


Let not the moments busy
Filled with lists
that list
the lists of do’s to do
act as barons born to rob me
of the joy
a birthright mine
He has called in whispers
in cloud bursts
in verses kind
sweet the sound my master’s messages
by name the calling comes
live! He breathes
in words
refresh my soul with wild abandon
I am yours and yours alone
an invitation words of wonder
live! I will


Have I slipped from Your favor


I removed my own eyes from it

Playing a game of


and holding my eyes shut too long until I could not remember


I would see when I opened them

salt-water solitude

he took to the ocean
and there he found
in the waves and the whitened foam
in the salt buoyant a tempest on the tongue
in the cool of the water washed soul
in the magnitude vastness spoke of greatness
creation as comforter
Creator as confidante
sea salt communion

poetry to breathe fresh

am the silly fool
who held expectations of others
and then let it bring out the worst in me
am the one who forgot
the nature of the created
and then groveled in my own inability to create
am the one who looked elsewhere
for grace unfettered
and then clipped it’s wings with reckless actions
am the one begging to again
appear but a woman foolish
and then rest in the
I Am
expectations of creation
unfettered in the action of grace
He is.

you have held me captive
your anger
your hurt
your judgment
of my hopes my dreams my life
and in wanting so much more for you
i have allowed it
and now
the binds tie too tightly
and I refuse them
hungry only
to be purely who I am designed to be
to be
As to grasp that which He offers me

Monday, April 18, 2011

A Day in the Life of a Struggling Writer

In the morning when I wake up I am of course, first myself, and then I am a wife and a mother. Throughout the day I find myself in a continuous changing-of-the-guard of sorts, as I attempt to flow efficiently and effectively through the additional roles that fill in the lines of my job description. As a home-schooling teacher of an almost teen, I add educator to a line, then there is home-manager, which can also be read as “maid”, accountant and budget manager, designer and decorator, and more and more frequently, wedding and event planner. The newest role of re-entry student threatens to make a splash in the equilibrium of my day, and every once in a while the roles of friend, sister, and daughter sneak in to wrestle a few minutes from the precarious balancing act that is my delightful and disjointed life.

I have enjoyed many roles in my fifty years of roaming this earth, and find that each of them form a piece of the greater whole, that is my most true self. I have dove to the depths of 120 feet in the waters of the South Pacific, a character in a magical chase of woman, shark and tortoise, and I can take you there. I have hovered motionless waiting for a tiny fish to peek from its Saki bottle abode in the watery white sands off the coast of Truk lagoon, blue waters clear and crystal, wrecks of an Imperial navy once mighty, resting forever quiet, and I can take you there. I have come to my knees before God, mighty and mysterious, and watched as he put together the pieces of a broken and hopeless life, and I can take you there. I have known the empty arms of a woman who has released son and husband to the heartache of death, and I can take you there.

The minutes of my days, my weeks, my months, and my years have seen many places, and many roles have been played on the stage of my life, yet every moment of every day I find that one role nags at my brain, and tugs at my heart; the singular role that pulls all my pieces together and make sense of them, every moment of every day, I, am a writer.

A writer writes even when no one is reading. A writer writes to release the stories true and imaginary, heartbreaking and hilarious, finished and unfinished from the confines of their bursting brain. A writer writes to free themselves of the words that pour through their brain at any time of their choosing, with and without permission. A writer writes because somewhere deep inside of themselves they believe it is exactly what they were made to do, even if they don’t believe that they themselves were created at all, a writer still feels driven to express, to speak with words of black and white, to create. A writer writes because although in the morning they may wake up a mother, or a father, a wife or a husband, a businessperson or an accountant, every minute of every day, they are a writer. I write, because every moment of every day, something says to me, “You were born to write.”

The Tools of My Trade

"I don't know what I think until I write it down."
Joan Didion

Author Joan Didion notes in her book, “The Year of Magical Thinking” (2006.) that at one point in her quest as an author, her husband, an accomplished screen-writer remarked that she would not truly become a writer until she maintained the habit of carrying a notepad with her constantly. The notepad, of course was for the purpose of recording those random bits of beauty, wisdom, and wildness, which will of course only come to the writer at an inconvenient and interruptive time. Upon reading this, knowing that my career as a writer had lay fallow for some fifteen years, I made a commitment to the notepad, and she and I have become inseparable partners in a singular purpose; that this writer who had not penned much more than a college paper, and the random thank you note, would once again set off on the lovely and languishing journey called writing.

In her book, “Bird by Bird; Some Instructions on Writing and Life” (2006), author Ann Lamott notes that to be good writer, one must first be a reader. While writers often rely on experiences from their own life as a starting point for their writing, reading other authors, both great and marginal, gives the writer the opportunity to study style, context, tone, and use of verbiage. Ultimately, reading enlarges the perspective of the writer, and while making them struggle with the deep jealousies that come with the knowledge that someone else is a great and published author, or worse someone else writes drivel, and yet still got paid for the spew that you are currently reading, still, reading spurs the creative mind.

Other tools of the writing trade include a good laptop computer, or some well-sharpened pencils, a hand that doesn’t cramp in revolt at hours of writing, a dictionary, a thesaurus, a book of quotations, interesting people, places, and perspective, and of course, life experience, life experience, and life experience.

In a recent interview with O Magazine, poet and author Dr. Maya Angelou remarked that her writing tools include a quiet hotel room where she a keeps her notes, “a Bible, a thesaurus, a dictionary, and a bottle of sherry.” (April 2011) As for this writer, sherry aside, writing without prayer is like toast without butter, dry and devoid of taste, and often, my inspirations come in that time right after I have opened my Bible, gotten to my knees, and listened to the voice of the singular Master of the creative word.

The tools of my craft have begun to fill the empty spaces of my home, notes litter my purse, my car, and a writing file, a little black notebook sits on my bed stand, ideas are scrawled in the margins of books that I am currently reading or have recently read, on church programs, and on my daily to do list. As I drive, if a witty quip or a deep reflection comes to mind, I ask my children that are riding in the car with me to send a text of my thought to my phone, or I call and send myself a message. In encouragement of my craft, a once guest room has been reconfigured and retitled by my husband as writer’s retreat, echoing his belief in me each time he mentions the term. My tools in place it is time to tame the beast.

Taming the Intimidating Task

I have heard it told that the great American author Jack London compelled himself to sit at his desk each day and pen a specific number of words. Writer’s write, they make themselves write, and I make myself write. It is a discipline. The apostle Paul, in his writings to his young associate Timothy instructs him with the following admonition recorded in 1 Timothy 4:7 of the Bible, “Discipline yourself for the purpose of godliness.” As for me, I believe that any writing skill I have is a God-given gift, and should be treated as such, for the use of my Creator, for the encouragement, edification and education of others, and of course, just for the delight of the using the gift. And so I discipline myself, making an effort to read wisdom literature, and excellent authors, and seeking to write a minimum of twenty minutes a day.

Writer’s Block

What do you feel when you see a blank page? When for one reason or another you are compelled to write a report, a letter, or a simple thank you note to your mother. Do beads of perspiration form on your brow? Then do the shakes begin, and perhaps it is worse than a cold-turkey drug withdrawal? For some people there is nothing more intimidating than a blank page. Writers feel the same, it is a sick and unnerving game of chicken as one hears in their mind, “I have no words to write, I am compelled to write, nothing is coming to my tortured brain, and my deepest desire is to write.” Having this condition known as Writer’s Block can make one think; “Oh it would feel so good to bang my head against the wall.” One may recall that they had a brilliant thought while driving in the car, or in the middle of the night last night, or while sitting on the toilet, and now all shining ideas seem to have flushed down that proverbial porcelain pot along with the rest of the excrement. When faced with such frustration, this writer has no choice but to disagree with the voices in my head that argue that I will never write anything of value again and write, until a void and staring page becomes words, and words become a sentence, and poetry turns into blog, sentence into article, and chapter into book.


Some fifteen plus years ago, my writing partner and I would look forward to the daily ritual of going to the mailbox. Inside this treasure trove of such, we might find glorious evidences that someone; somewhere thought we could pen a word or two. A successful day might bring an acceptance letter from a magazine, or a check from a publishing house, or even for evidence of true accomplishment, an actual story or article set in beautiful type comfortably resting between the two covers of a magazine or book. Ah, writer’s heaven. Today, as an unsure but hopeful writer, my work finds itself appearing regularly in a self-publishing format called the blog.

Originally titled web logging, the blog is an interactive web site where a writer can post a variety of compositions from diary form to advertisement in style. Once the blog is posted to the website people using the web can access the author’s blog page, read the posting, and even leave a comment for the writer. In an effort to discipline myself to practice the art and skill of writing, I set forth a personal challenge within myself to complete a number of pieces that were finished enough for the reader’s eye, and self-publish them in the blog format. The intent of this project was simple and straightforward, as a writer, I needed to write, and even the thought that someone else might be reading spurs my desire to write well. Blog writers also have the opportunity to share biographical information for the reader, as well as other blogs that the writer may read or contribute to.

Resources for Writers

Resources for writers abound, some excellent and some marginal. For the readers benefit I have noted within the text several books that may assist in the writing process. Those interested in the writing experience may also find assistance through local colleges that offer courses and seminars for aspiring writers, as well as writers groups that are formed specifically for the purpose of writers encouraging writers.

Although writers write because they must, they often have the deep desire to see their write in print and to open their mailbox and find a tangible monetary reward. As for this writer, I will keep on praying, keep on making those furious scribbles I call notes, and keep on writing with the hope that not only will my work be read, but that it will make a difference in the life of even one human being, and if I open my mailbox to a cache of checks, I will consider it an honor and a privilege to get paid to do a job that I love.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

The Land of Sun and Sea Breezes

For some reason the memories of my childhood that are the most crystal for me are those of my adolescent and teenage years. As an almost seven year old little girl, my parent's had loaded me and my three siblings up into the back seat of a 65 Ford Mustang and driven us across the continental U.S. from Detroit to California, for a job relocation. My father worked for the Ford Motor Company, and they had decided to send us from the land of snow and auto parts, to the land of sunshine and sea breezes. In my memories, the move was magical.

My recollections of living in Warren, a little suburb of Detroit are few, but most of them are lined with snowsuits and images of my older brother some 5 years my senior "walking" me to school through the winter snow while pelting me from the rear with a carefully crafted arsenal of snowballs. I can recall the extra time spent at the beginning of each school day engaged in mastering the subject of Snow gear Removal 101. I have a mystical memory of a field trip to woods near my elementary school, where my mind’s eye tells me my mother was in attendance. Truth, or conjured, I cannot say. I have also heard rumor that as a toddler, I rolled canned goods at my younger brother, hoping to impede his progress in learning to walk, and that later he took the scissors to my ear, perhaps to repay my earlier abuses. I maintain that if this story bears any truth, that I was simply preparing for a bright and prosperous future in bowling, and that somehow I have been robbed of a professional career that could have been. It has also been told, that when I was yet an infant in my crib, my older sister had to pat my bottom to sleep each and every night, in order to keep me from wailing my household into despair, with my bedtime rants. Knowing myself as I do now, I will not question the validity of this tale, but must say, "Sis, if you are reading, I love you, and a million thanks for saving my life!" Finally, I remember my mother escorting me to the doctor's office when a screw on the swing set won an ill-matched bout with my eye, and stitches were required. These are the extent of my pre-sunshine recollections. What I do not remember is my dad, and though I know he was there, working hard, and doing exactly what fathers of his generation did, he does not appear in my memory bank until the land of swimming pools warms my frostbitten memories.

As a mother, it concerns me the depths of what my children may have forgotten, or whether their sweetest memories are hidden away from them like long packed away children's story books. I became a mother at 21, having four beautiful blonde children in the short period of six years, a son and then three daughters. A little more than five years later another blonde son was added to our family. Life was full of New Year’s Day trips to the ocean to watch dad surf and walk in the sand, and each child being tucked in and prayed for and then sung a lullaby at bed time. Our first tiny house had a backyard twice as big as the house, with a bamboo forest where they played hide and seek, and a wooden play set that Grandma and Papa had erected in the backyard. Daddy fell asleep at family gatherings and we teased him by quietly putting a stuffed toy on his stomach, and then taking photographs to be displayed at the next holiday. There were walks in the park, and fiesta birthday parties, and the general joy of being a family.

When my youngest son was not yet three, we lost his beloved brother and father to the ocean that they both loved so dearly, and in many ways I began to disappear as well. It is amazing how my identity had entwined itself so tightly around this man and boy, and only by the very present grace of God, did I maintain the understanding that my beautiful daughters and young son needed me. I loved my children with all of my heart, and wanted to give them the very best, but somehow instead of taking the pieces of my shattered heart to the God I had always trusted, I tried to tuck them away, ashamed of my own brokenness. My heart wandered, looking for healing in places where none could be found, and clinging to God with one hand, while I shook my fist at him with the other. By my daughters teen years I had let my faith in God slip out the back door like an unwanted party guest, and the Christ-centered home that their father and I had so carefully cultivated, became a home of shattered hearts and broken dreams. In my lack of faith, God was still faithful, and gently, lovingly, he reminded me of the woman that he designed me to be, and the promises that I had made hand in hand with their father, to dedicate our children to Him. He restored my hope and my desire to again build a family that shines with loving-kindness, joy, and a sense of being valued.

Now, as I see the wounds that these amazing children still bear, I wonder just how many I inflicted with the sharp edges of my once shattered heart. If for me, it is not the beautiful days of being a little girl that most shine in my mind, but rather the awkward years of being a gawky freckled red-haired teen, then perhaps their broken teen years are also what threaten still to steal their joy. I long for them to recall the lullaby’s, the crisp breeze of an early morning on the beach, a snuggle on the couch with mom and dad; life in the land of sun and sea breezes. I cannot undo the brokenness inflicted by their losses, nor by my own hurt, but I have the opportunity daily, for as long as I am blessed to walk this earth with these amazing individuals I call my children, to show them unmeasured grace and value, the humility of understanding that no words of apology cover my failures, and countless acts of love that are due them just because, they are my children.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Project on Prayer

For my readers,

I have been working on a project called 365 Days of Prayer, if you would like to see what I am doing you can follow this link:

Thank you for your grace and thoughtfulness,

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