Altered

 

Altered

The bed of grass
like a hay-field—
parched, lifeless,
longing for a brief
morsel of ‘any’ sustenance
to give it a chance to sway.

No-thing came to fill
the void.  Then, 
a quick jostle
from nowhere.

The sound was like
a freight-train
pulled along a track
without the engine running.

It whipped through
trees, unseen.  Yet
branches became projectiles.
Enormous trunks were uprooted, 
crashing to earth like
the sound of thunder.
Limbs lay broken
on barren grass
longing for so much
more than lifeless debris.
Avenues of light
poured into places
untouched by the sun’s rays.

Two warblers rushed in and out
of the woods searching for insects to
bring to their newborns.
Chirping aloud in cascading winds
their only longing was
to be fed,
and 
their feathered parents provided food
even in the chaos.

The perplexities around me,
within me,
created a soft calm
inside my soul.

How could this be?

How could it not be?

All around me trees stood,
others were uplifted,
while tender shoots were
re-shaped, re-fashioned.
So, too, I.
How?
Still, remains to be seen.
Everyday an
encounter to become.
Each moment an opportunity
to begin again.

Often, why, I cannot explain.
In broken places,
in grief’s gravity,
we are held in place
to finally SEE.

There You are
as You have always been.

Never promising perfection
yet, shining forth
from an altered frame.

EVERY-thing held
together.

The stars glisten overhead
as the sun
begins to rise.

 

Drops of Color/ I See

Drops of Color

I See

Legs dipping under
then quickly—reach up, and outward.

Higher and higher
the wind attempting to catch-up.

I breathe~~~ ‘in.’

My feet caress the soft grass
as I cascade above its
feathery green blades.

I breathe~~~ ‘out’
closing my eyes.

In between breaths,
the silent gap.

My eyes
wide open…
NOW

I SEE.

Preacher…

Preacher

How I love your
wooden pulpit…
the etchings look like living veins.

Even more, I love
your sermons.
Without words…
you sit upon your perch
surrounded by leaves.

I hear your unspoken whispers in the wind.

What’s it like
in the tree tops
to see the rising sun?
That ball of flame—
is it like the fire of your
spirit within?

At night,
do you pull the stars
down to light your domain?
Does your striped tail curl
a constellation
playing long enough to let it go?

That mask you wear…
is it so no one knows
your name?

You possess nothing
yet, you live amidst all things.

Little Preacher—
I love observing
how you praise.

You can go back inside.

I love that your services are not
held in time.

Silent Preacher

I feel your welcome.
“I’m inside.”

Drops of Color/ Who Are You?

Drops of Color

Who Are You?

Interesting,
you gaze at yourself
through a shattered piece of glass.

Now, that’s telling!

But what is being ‘acted?’

Are you putting on colors
or whipping them off?

Who did you make yourself
out to be?
Certainly, the world loves a clown.

Underneath,
there is still you.

I think you love the you that
the crowd does not know.
Who are you once the mask,
the make-up removed?

You conveniently mingle through
the crowd and no one shouts,
“Hey, that’s the clown who had us
rolling in the aisles—”
the one who gently touched the child
on chemo and the little one smiled…

The parents cried—
it was an expression of Joy.

Then with arms spread wide you
embraced a senior citizen
all alone in a nursing home.
She raised her hand touching your face…
her first movement in God knows how
long—you could hear a pin drop.

I read about a person
who ‘touched’ the crowds
and would say, “Don’t tell
anyone what I’ve done…

go show yourself to the
priests…that will suffice.”

No one listened.
They broadcast the 
acts from town to town.

There was hardly a 
place the person
could go—

‘Unrecognized.’

Hey, Who Are You?

Are you that
same person?

Your show lives on…

I still see the
world smiling.

Your nose still has
red paint on it.

When I Despair…

When I Despair…
When I Despair…
I go out beneath
an infinite sea of blue sky
—and plunge in.

When I Despair…
my arms begin to stroke
the clouds, using them to
carry me on, and on, and on.

When I Despair…
I lie down in green meadows.
I become a ‘blade’ alongside many
—not a blade cutting
     but, one holding a drop
     on its head
—a balm for my parched
    dry lips.

When I Despair…
tears form
—white caps rush over my 
    salty cheeks.
Unstoppable, I can barely see
my breath.  I keep returning
to the surface
to take in another cup of air.

When I Despair…
I lay my head down
birds begin to sing
—their chorus, my lament.
Creatures bring gathered twigs,
pines, rocks to bury the One
whose hand I gently let-go.

Persons, near & far have reached
for me and continue to.

In my Despair…
I have never been alone.

Now, the shade
is pulling itself down.

I seek the comfort of despair
and the wisdom it imparts.

I choose to be alone
under a ceiling of stars—
my hands raised.
Despair has become a new friend…
JOY as a ‘planet’ shoots
across the sky.

Goodbye dad…
You’ll truly never be gone.
I’ll sing with you beneath 
the Moon.

You’re in Heaven~~~EVERYWHERE.
In Loving Memory of Joseph Mattucci
A Hero, A Good Man, my dad

December 24, 1931 – July 22, 2020

 

Drops of Color/ Kneeling

Drops of Color

Kneeling

Kneeling earnestly in silence
beside a bed.

Listening…
No words flow.

Something seems to have lifted
a latch to a gate
and a gentle stream rushes through.

I hear the roar of a river
gripping the rapids.
White caps drench me
as I hold ‘in’ stillness.

A calm ensues
glazing the water’s surface.
I move and still my being
hovers as if held by wings.

Again…
No phrases break from
my lips.

My ears pick up the sound
of One beside me.

Audible sentences
I do not take in.

Yet, a knowing
‘echoes’
all around me.

Reaching into the 
intimate chambers of
my beating heart,
my knees long
to remain
alongside this bed.

Only a little longer—please.

And, then…the day Begins—

although it already began
along side You.

These Houses

These Houses

These Houses

These Houses
display many colors.

Some the same hue
yet, always an appearance
changing

pending the time
of day.

Shadows split open
the windows
and the shades lift
without a handle being
pulled.

At times—
colors are not 
detected, especially
if from a distance.

But, when a shooting
star spills from
a Universe,
its particles of light
reveal
what no artist’s pallet
could duplicate.

The doors are always open.

These houses
hold mansions
of cascading colors

a place 
already prepared
for you.

Drops of Color/ Finding a Balance

Drops of Color

Finding a Balance

The sun held
the blue ceiling
laced in rays.

The soft green
strands of hair
rooted in earth
stood as if their
performance was
on-going.

Center stage
a pink feathered
actor
dipped, tucked,
and stood eloquently
balanced on one leg.

The sun
began its bow
westward
illuminating
the light
long enough
for the artist
to see the curtain closed,

and then flying silently
to the standing
ovation—creation.

An encore
written
yet, not in words.

Wings unfurled.

And…

And…

when I have lost
you,

I’ve gone off searching.

Even the darkness
could not dispel my
endless quest.

Through howling winds
and crackling branches,
the ebb and flow
of a river’s 
rhythmic dance,

I lifted rocks
and splashed through
puddles.

I climbed high—
descend low
and traversed in between all that is between

AND

 there you were.
You laughed—
I joined in.

Together,
we rolled down hills slipping into
the valleys—
grass-stains painting
our knees.

You were 
and always
are
in every place.
I lay my every step,

AND
most of ALL,
you are within
me.

It’s when
I AM lost that I AM truly
found.

And…

Drops of Color/ Black Velvet

Drops of Color

Black Velvet

For too long

persons have split darkness
from light.

Shadows have been painted
at times, as evil.

Yet, when one is ‘blinded’
by the light, no one
speaks ill.

A galloping silhouette
casts from a beam
radiating a golden glow.

Unseen hoofs—beat.

A black velvet mane
hovers in the wind.

Light opens the path
as a tail
glazes a dawning
welcomed by night’s
departure. 

 

With This Ring

With This Ring

I was pulled 
like a magnet.

The light, a burning flame.
My eyes could not turn away.

I was blinded,
yet, I could see
a ring around the sun.

The ring, a kaleidoscope of
colors.

My eyes blinked and blinked
like a set of windshield wiper blades
trying to clear what
was before me.

I was held in this circle.
A Gospel, without words.
A creation story revealed
EVERY day.

No beginning, no ending.
An eternal ‘I Do’ wedding me
to this life.

This life inviting me to a wedded Union
with all things Good.

Woven into this circle,
the colors fading
yet, not away.
The colors faded
‘into’ me.

I felt a wedded bliss.
The Sun inside me—
and, I was in the Sun.

‘With this ring’…

“You may now’…

Something kissed my brow.

The birds sang a Pronouncement:

“You are One with All.”

Pardon me now while I kiss
the sky.

 

Drops of Color/ The Wheel

Drops of Color

The Wheel

Like the Seasons,
the wheel circles

—dipping down
—drawing in
    the endless drops
    that fill the spring.

A sudden rush~~~ water swirling

—spinning the wheel
—holding barrels
   of sustenance
    for only so long.

NOW, the wheel spills like a waterfall

releasing its content
refilling once more.

The circle
—round and round it goes
    empty, full, pouring itself out…

Simple, to discover the Divine

—in a wheel
—in the water
—in the wood
     that holds long enough
     to let go
     over and over again.

A Telescope

(Excerpt from a Journal/Camino St Francis #1/September 2019)

Telescope

When I was a child,
I looked out through a telescope
gazing at stars…dancing fireflies.
I tried to catch one…
didn’t work—I
tried again and again.
Trust, look at my knees.
I tumbled, fell and 
I laughed.
The stars seemed to shine more brightly
the more I looked upon them.
I still know the meaning of being ‘star’ struck.
Light beams meandering upon a velvet sea of sheer blackness.
Sometimes I imagine I’m swimming in that pool of darkness.
I pause here because something has
changed or maybe it’s the same.
I have been HERE and I AM asking who am I, and Who are YOU…

You no longer have a name and yet you are in ALL things.
What is MOST real in THIS moment is YOU
looking through the telescope at me.

Do you know who I am?  In my simple understanding, you do know who I am.
I’m setting out on a walk…AGAIN.
Silver wings will fly me across the sea and I’ll traverse a landscape where 
the Lover of creation, the poor man Francis of Assisi LIVED, until Sister Death brought him into the eternal landscape of stars—his friends.

Francis asked the same question I ask.
Did he EVER discover WHO he was?
You called him to BUILD your church.

Within, I believe it NOT a church of brick & mortar.
I trust it was a church, the church where Spirit dwells…
in that HID-DEN cave inside each of us!

While writing, I feel a star
or a slew of stars moving in me.
They are shining…yes, yes—
You see them as You LOOK through the lens.

A silence hovers over me.

What is happening, what has begun?
I am writing this page at the END of my journal because I strongly hold 
where we END we BEGIN.

So, WHO am I?
WHO are You?
What if I find out?

When I return to this side of the pond in three weeks,

Perhaps…
Maybe…

I’ll have to buy you a TELESCOPE.

No—NOT to look out of, but
to allow the One inside of you to look
and look 
and see
YOU!

Drops of Color/ In the Back

Drops of Color
In the Back

Is this a poem I’m beginning?
Is it a conscious moral inventory?
Black words are spilling
across a white background.
The ‘words’ are the fruit
splashing from a pen.

I’m a white woman.
Yes, a white, retired Peace (Police) Officer.
I’ve undergone countless hours of training.
Defensive tactics were taught to me and
to other brother and sister officers. Never
a choke hold was spoken of—nor role modeled!

One instructor, who taught us DWI (Driving while under the Influence) procedures,
expressed first and foremost that when someone is
intoxicated ‘we’ need to understand that the person’s 
JUDGMENT is impaired.
The responsibility befalls the officer
to handle the situation 
with great care, caution and safety for ALL—
including self.

To expect an individual to ‘follow’ verbal
commands when under the influence—
the expectation is absurd.

The Use of Force continuum
is there to protect persons…
the aggressor and the one attempting
to stop the aggressor(s).

Shots to the back.
An individual fleeing…on foot.
All information on Mr. Brooks available.
A simple warrant could have been completed.
An arrest made later.

Simple to write.
Easy to say.
I was not there.

Yet, I’m sketching
another picture of a black man.
A man whose life was taken
and the law would  decide a sentence.

There is a LARGER issue
cracking open the stained-glass
windows covering hid-den truths…
NOW, things being filmed on camera
—LIVE—
and still questions…
maybe he/she is guilty?
A life gone too soon by the
very hands called to Protect & Serve.

I have my own story
—a knee taken to my neck (metaphorically).
A situation dismissed…
I was, according to investigators (at the top),
an oversensitive female.

But, a wise teacher (MT Winter)
guided me…
It’s not the time to make this
about my story.

This is about Rayshard Brooks, George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor
countless others and…I pray, “NO more.”

I pray, “Lord, hear the cries of your people.”

Come, Source of Life…I pray.

Swinging

Swinging

In the night,
I drift
and often wander.

These moments
—silence like a clap of thunder
—lightening striking an
    unseen place in my Soul.

In this dwelling place,
I reach for your hand.
I realize both of your 
arms have been waiting
—waiting to wrap themselves around me.

I close my eyes.
I can never remember
the length of the moment
held within you.

Next, we’re swinging
side by side.
The light of the silvery moon
—a Segue.

We hum—no words.
I take in your breath.
You take in mine.

Back and forth
we glide
—toes pointing
toward the sky
—the backward
motion
regaining momentum.

Our hands let
go
as the sun rises.

My heart
begins to beat
anew
welcoming
another day.

Drops of Color/ In this House

Drops of Color

In this House…

there are mansions…MANY.

On the outside,
a bare wall—
you can see leakage.

A door tarnished.

An empty chair, brooms, buckets, shovel, a hose and a single pair of clogs.

Inside…
She’s setting a fire
—a steaming cup of tea
placed beside her rocker.

She is in from her garden.
She’s picked the vegetables
—she’s milked the cow
and taken the creamy suds
to the family down the road.

Three small children—
Dad lost his job.
Mom diagnosed with_________.

Several persons
who await her produce
‘attempt’ to slip the woman
a coin—
she kindly smiles
—shakes her head
—closes her hand around theirs…tucking the coin
‘back’ into their possession.

Some in the 
neighborhood
don’t even know her name.

She prefers to remain
anonymous
but, every once in awhile
someone calls her out.

“What you see in me
is in You” she whispers—

and moves on.

She walks to her home

AND

there are many more
like her.

Persons in the most
‘unlikely’ places
changing the world.

The real saviors of
the world NOT calling
attention to themselves
yet, LIVING each day
caring

Caring for

the earth giving her the 
bounty to share.
Loving creatures
who lovingly return
sustenance as if appreciative
of the love received.

You may vision a mansion
differently
but, THIS tiny place
holds a treasure
the world could not afford…

With the exception of
LOVE in return.

Fashioned

Fashioned

Look
Look above
~~~a cornfield of blue flowers 
laced with delicate linen designs.
The artist weaves a needle
and the sky is fashioned.

Look
Look below
~~~a shaggy rug
each strand lifting as if greeting
a long awaited friend.
Embracing affectionately, they become
fashioned to one another
~~~they roll in the cushioned earth
of green grasses
~~~brown roots hold them in the 
soils.
The artist dips the brush…

Look
Look ahead
~~~rolling wheels.
They move with a rhythm.
The artist winds the brush
like a watch that runs
beyond time.
White spray—
flocks of seagulls form
~~~waves rise then fall
~~~the tide in, then suddenly out,
driven by an unseen hand
cresting the moon until it is
full.
The wheels of the ocean’s waves
unfurl.
Yes, here is where the artist
dips the brush.

Oh, Look
and feel
~~~a soft whisper rising
like a stampede of wild horses
~~~dust filling an open landscape
~~~a top spiraling
gathering everything in its path.
The artist lets-go.
Everything created changed.
The design unsettled.

A quiet hush,
colors melted
—the scene invisible.

Look
there is the artist
~~~walking, so it seems,
into what appears to be
a scene of pillars dressed in
green leaves
~~~birds singing
~~~forest creatures have come out
of their hid-den places.
A pencil in the artist’s hand…
shadows etched.

See
See all the portraits?
Each day creation’s ‘creators’
You, me~~~
fashion the designs we are
meant to bring to life
and the One who brings us
to life
Smiles.

“I AM looking upon the work
of your hands.
I See… it is all that matters.

Well done…
Well done.”

Drops of Color/ A Few Stones

Drops of Color

A Few Stones

There were a few stones
in the sack.

Gems—
always in place
in case…

in case a predator
seized upon
one of the woolly lambs.

This time—
there was a Giant.

A large ‘flock’
needed protection.

A few precious stones
pulled from a pouch

and launched~~~

A Giant fell.

A hush could be heard
for miles and the ground
shook.

A shepherd—
the one no one even gave
an account for—

He is
still remembered
as a king.
And even he—fell.

He stood back on his feet—

remorseful.

Be mindful if you gather
stones…

and how you might
be called to 
use them.

Do you know Her?

Do you know Her?

Recognize her?
You think she’s homeless–
right?

We don’t want the 
likes of her in our neighborhood.
She is not allowed where we live~~~
her ‘likes’ don’t give off 
positive energy.
Right?

Well, I decided to 
follow her…
From a distance.

When she rose
from her bed of rock,
she pulled back a small
crust of bread.
The expression on her face
was that of an angel
and, NOW she was surrounded
by endless wings.
She fed the feathered creatures
as if a liturgy had begun.

She draped her
shawl, her vestment…
around her shoulders.
She gathered the ‘host’
of belongings
lying beside her.

She ceremoniously proceeded
through the streets.

As she walked by
the bakery,
she lifted a bag left for her.

The owner of the coffee stand
filled her a paper cup—
her chalice of morning
brew.

The butcher
left some slices of
meat and cheese curds
and off she went…

—beneath the bridges

—into the alleyways
—behind dumpsters.

She went ‘into’ the
‘hid-den’ crawl spaces.

She knew her congregation.

She shared communion.

She saw me
and pulled herself
to my side.

She didn’t say anything…
She did not have to.

NOW…
I’m trying to follow.

I have so much
to let-go!

 

A humble, heartfelt ‘Thank you‘ to ‘all’ who responded to the last post: “I Can’t Breathe.”

I wept and honestly can say I am breathing a little more easily because of the enormous acts of LOVE ‘spreading’ across the globe…even amidst so much unrest.

Many of you asked permission to share the ‘post.’
By all means—please feel free to share these seeds of love I ‘tend’ and plant.

If you’re moved to share…please invite persons to go directly to: www.onesingledrop.com
and join the garden of the many community members.
One can Unsubscribe at anytime.

Let’s plant fertile ground in THIS Garden of Life we have been blessed to dwell ‘within’ and to care & nurture.

 

Drops of Color/ I Can’t Breathe

Drops of Color

I Can’t Breathe…

As I write these three words,
I keep hearing the sounds of 
the hammer driving three
nails into the flesh of an
innocent man.

I hang my head—my lament so raw.
Unraveling the words, my white, feminine flesh
spills black ink from a pen.
I do not know how to
frame the cry within me, choking me.
I must write, but what?

I sought the words of a Dreamer…

“…Let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia.
     Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain Tennessee.
     Let freedom ring from every hill and molehill of Mississippi.
     From every mountainside, let freedom ring.

    And when this happens, and when we allow freedom to ring, when we let it
    ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city,
    we will be able to speed up that day when ALL of God’s children, black
    and white, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to
    join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual:

    Free at last!  Free at last!

    Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!”

                                                                                                                                                                                             ~~~Martin Luther King, Jr.
                                                                                                                                                                                              28th August 1963

I wish to sing, but my tears flood my
wind pipe…I’m choking.
Mr. Floyd, the simplicity of my words
are an attempt to BREATHE for you.

Was this your life’s purpose…to ignite a flame?
Your purpose so much more!
Across the country, from Minneapolis, to Los Angeles, New York, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Illinois, Utah and—
cries are heard.

Systemic shifts are caving in
amidst a pandemic.
Lives are being lost.
The Earth is quaking.

Will we all perish in our inability
to see we’re all FREE…we are all created equal?

God Almighty, how you weep now with us.

  You breathed life into the dust of this landscape, brown soils, creating humankind…
my heart is not able to reckon what we are
living in NOW
this was/is not a part of your Design.

Come to our assistance—
Come, if ONLY, to embrace our sorrows.
Let us sit for a while in these ashes.
Let us bathe in the folly of all 
our unknowing.

May the loss of George Floyd’s life simply not be a moment we look back upon and ‘recall’.

Let freedom ring
and ring
and ring
until God Almighty we are all Free at last.

I pray my ‘eyes’ behold the Dream Come True
before I take my last breath.

Forgive me while I still breathe.
I cannot keep silent.

Leonardo

Leonardo

He arrived—
as if out of Nowhere.

In a ‘way,’ we summoned someone to drive around the bend to transport us to the location we originally sought.  We walked in the opposite direction~~~through forests and orchards of horse chestnuts, tobacco fields, grape vines, peach trees.

Our sole purpose~~~ to visit what I would name, ‘Oxen,’ in order to purchase the cheese made from their luscious milk.

The Red Fiat turned the bend and stopped.
Our guide approached.  He wore a classic straw hat,  a long sleeve blue shirt, tucked in…pants held by suspenders.  He responded to our request.  Four women invited into this man’s small auto.  He spoke Italian— Emese and Deanna understood. Wendy and I looked and listened.  Each day he drives to the top of the hill where there is a small cemetery.  His wife died almost 2 months ago~~~they were married 50 years.  Tears fill his eyes.  When he makes his way from the cemetery, he seeks ‘pilgrims’ on their way to Assisi…any WAY he can HELP, assist, offer presence.  He was our Angel and he told us we were his miracle. 

He drove us to the entrance doors—to the store.  He wished to drive us back, but we graciously declined—yet, not before an embrace… a kiss first on one cheek, then the other.

A simple word  packed with MORE feelings than one can explain…”Thank You.”

Did we meet Francis of Assisi?  Yes!

Did we meet Christ?  Yes!

Was this man and angel?  Yes!

His name, Leonardo.

Today, I AM no longer the same having joined the path called Life~~~with him.

(Excerpt from a Journal on the Camino St Francis/Italy)

“If the only prayer you ever utter is ‘thank you’…it is enough!”     Meister Eckhart

 

Drops of Color/ Built on Water

Drops of Color

Built on Water

The house
was not built upon sand…

Nor did ‘rock’
hold the weight of an
array of limbs and twigs.

The branches were laced, intertwined,
woven together
on a bed of water.

Yes, this house built
upon a weightless
stream running slowly
—rushing effortlessly down yonder.

The builder,
out in the early hours of dawn
chopped trees 
like a pecking of a chisel
until…”timberrrrrrrrr.”

Yet, no sound heard
except the pounce of
the wood caressing the ground
and then the mighty branch
being hulled by a tug boat.

But, this boat
has no motor.

An enormous tail works
the water like a shutter
—swift movements
—a thrust forward then back
finally arriving at home base.

The builder tugged,
pulled, lifted
and sewed the wood
into the foundation.

Protected from the weathers
—inside, one dry elegant room.

A family gathers.
Day has begun
—hidden they remain,
until the first star appears.

The lumberers sharpen
their teeth
as off to work
they paddle.

Their house on 
the water
BUILT
and fashioned
with care.

A Perfect Contradiction

A Perfect Contradiction

Once a seed
held in a bed
of dark, liquorice soils—
you ‘broke.’

You, already ALIVE
pulsing, surging,
taking in sustenance.
You pushed softly,
until your delicate
nature
burst from Earth’s womb.

Inhaling life,
—you stretched
—you reached
—you expanded.

Enveloping the sky,
you bathed in the light of the sun.
You wrapped yourself in
the crescent moon
and glistening stars.

Inside,
your rings unfolded.
Your task in this world
if, it be termed a task—
to Grow.

Each day
you trust what is
needed to allow you to be.

Season upon season,
you have been bent,
reshaped, broken by storms,
healed by soaking rain.
You rested while snowflakes
gathered around you
until you burst with buds
painting the world
green beneath a sky,
blue as an ocean.

Waves of clouds
gathered to greet you—
welcoming you to
THIS time.

A cycle of perfect
contradictions—
You stand…

Life, death and rising
again and again
in a fashion
unduplicated by a human hand.

Drops of Color/ Red Shovel

Drops of Color

Red Shovel

There it was
lying on the path—
a price-tag dangling from its handle.

Who lost this treasure?
A simple red sand shovel…
it held the potential
to go ‘deep’ into the sand.
Oh, what ‘one’ could create
with this ‘toy.

Reaching down,
I held it by its neck…
placing it in my pack so that it 
was visible…why?

Days passed—
the red shovel
stepped with me,
but it began to weigh down
my being.
“Let me dig,” it seemed
to say.

I was not about to stop,
and then
in front of me,
a clear path—

flowers strewn on both sides…
scented walls greener than green
cascading with blossoms…
a pond of fresh lilies to my left
—they held my gaze
I heard the fall!

She was five maybe six—
she was on the ground.
She was hurt,
she wanted to cry.
A little hole was in her pant leg—
her tiny hands cupped her tiny knee.

As she rose,
her father grasped her hand.
As she rose,
the little red shovel in my 
bag climbed out.

As I handed her the shovel,
a curve in her lips turned
upward…
a smile revealed.

“You, took a fall~~~
now you can use this shovel
to dig for treasures…
share with your brother.”

I glanced at the father
and then the mother—
their eyes spoke words
that were not echoed aloud.

Then, the little girl
holding the ‘toy’ in both hands,
said without prompt,
“Thank you!”

I walked on.
I discovered the buried treasure.

(Excerpt from a Journal in Wales/Pembrokeshire Coast Path)

Grow in Splendor

Grow in Splendor

Wake up!
Throw on whatever garment
adorns your closet of hangers.

Splash your face.
Forget wiping off the fresh scent
of water drops trickling down
your neck.

Grab a pair of shoes—
better yet, go barefoot.

Thrust yourself out the door of your dwelling
and allow the ‘dwelling place’
within you to immerse itself
in the depths of a million blades of grass.

Grasses which rise
without command—they stand
because this is their splendor.

Glance around you.
Look at the trees—
their branches extend
holding rays of light.
Their leafy coats capture the wind
—they carry the birds’ songs
in Spring’s timeless birthing.

Oh, the clouds, they too, grow like a sea
of parachutes, hovering for a time,
casting shadows upon mountain tops.

They carry rain into desert places
and dissolve without worry IF they
left their mark in the world.

The splendors of creation
—my feet bathed in mud.
I stumble ‘in’ this moment purposefully
dropping to my knees.

Before me flowering without assistance
yet, birthed by a Holy Unseen Mother…
her whispered voice
impregnates the Universe birthing
what grows into Fullness without worry.

It need not ask, “Who am I?”
Already, it knows…

It is the Incarnation meant
to be at this moment of Life.

It is your turn—do not even give it a 
thought.

Grow in Splendor.
Become the FACE of God ‘already’
alive in you.

Gaze at the blossoming flowers—
allow the petals of your being to
draw back

revealing the LIGHT
shining through you.

Drops of Color/The Font

Drops of Color

The Font

One by one
they flew in.

First, they appeared to
dip their wings.

Second, they dunked their
heads coming up for air
before a full immersion.

A baptism of fluttering
ensued
and the community
gathered around
the ‘font.’

They welcomed everyone
before taking flight

even those without
wings

who dipped 
mere fingers into the waters
for a blessing.

An Umbrella

An Umbrella

Something said,
“Leave the Umbrella.”

But, “It’s pouring.”

Again, “Leave the Umbrella.”

Who said that?

Clicking the button,
the sails folded in upon
themselves.
It leaned itself
into the wall.

An umbrella cannot speak?!

Stepping out,
I glanced back.
No, I was not turned into 
a pillar of salt.

My right foot
was in a puddle.
Makes perfect sense
an umbrella would NOT 
have allowed this 
present situation
to dry-out.

The left foot,
not particularly cued
into the puddle its pal was in,
unknowingly ‘plunged in.’

Heavy drops of rain
began to wash over me.
My ‘soles’ were soaked,
why not my Soul?

I stepped from the 
pool I was in,
and I heard this
sound…

It was a pleasant
“SQUISHHH.”
The ‘waters’ in my shoes
drenched my shirt,
my pants,
my hair, my—
EVERYTHING

AND

became a song!

I began to dance.

Now something said,
“Get the Umbrella.”

“What, NOW?”
For Whaaaaa…

But, I got it.
I reached for the
umbrella…No, I did not
open its drape.
Instead, we clung to
each other.

We danced.
My sails opened
and the umbrella laughed.

“Don’t you love a rainy day?”

Still believe umbrellas don’t talk?

Drops of Color/ This Coat

Drops of Color
This Coat

“This” coat
stitched in love.
The garment which I 
refer to IS the piece
‘inside’ the fabric.

One person
responsible for THIS
design is my mother.
(amongst  a host of others)
She used various ‘strands,’
pieces, designer rags
to form me.
At times, in moments of her own
sacred stitching,
she would tear ‘patches’
of me.
‘Somehow,’
in my small mind, I knew—
I simply saw her brokenness.

Without SEEING—
my world became FULL
of colors…
deep reds
soft blues
gatherings of yellows
blankets of greens
rays of orange
black like an empty kettle
and white stars
flickering
without fading.

All the shades ‘fit’ me.
I have attempted
through the years,
to ‘invite’ others
to embrace
the many colors
of their coats.

Oh, the tapestries
we are~~~
The forms
holding our shapes.

Each of us fits
this Universe.

Without YOU,
this coat
of creation
would be less
than whole
and that pattern
never was
imagined
without you.

You are part of the
seam
threading life
without end.

Isolation

Isolation

A quiet room,
an invisible altar,
a solitary being.

She understands silence
and even ‘welcomes’ it.

A glowing candle
ignites a hymn.

Underlying conditions
do not deter the rise and fall
of her beating heart.

A host of guides
daily ‘enter’ her dwelling space.
Their labored arms
give birth to love.

A soft bell chimes
through the halls.
She opens the door of her
hid-den cathedral.

With extended hands,
She ‘receives.’

She dials the phone—
I answer…
Her proclamation:
“The Body of Christ!”

I simply respond, “Amen.”

Emphatically, before she hangs up,
she whispers
“I Love You!”
The candle flickers.

The sweetest ‘communion’
I have EVER tasted.

Drops of Color/ Reminding US

Drops of Color
Reminding US

Each one of us
—a vessel.

Our sails
—how they love the wind.

The ride changes
from day to day.

There is ‘something’ about
moving with the current.

Moments can push us beyond
the movement of the water’s flow.

Tossed off course,
we discover a resolve
within to find the path.

To accept the course
D-signed.

Sudden wakes
guide
the bow
into clear waters.

Gentle waves
tickle the sides of
our vessel.

Lifting our head,
—Sails extended.

The wind blows—

“Divine Spirit”
a presence
reminding us

“I’m here
     I’m here
        I’m here.”

Climbing into the mast
—looking outward

No land
in sight—

Soar

Look

Look

There you were…
Your yellow shutters opened wide—
The slender green houses
growing beside you
were like a frame
accentuating your gentle presence.

There you stood
outstretched—
The blue sky above you
tipped its hat.
Puffy white clouds
cast shadows all around
you…your beauty
majestic.

A mountain of stone appeared as a
backdrop…if one LOOKED
closely enough,
your soft color
painted the rock.

I almost passed you by
—So tiny
—So dainty
—So unnoticed.
All that mattered was YOU.

You spread yourself—arms extended.

Your invitation
for ALL

Look…

Look often THIS day.

Life is speaking its glory.

While words are attempting to bring
this reality to light,

Your lack of written expression
FILLS the page.

Drops of Color/ Come

Drops of Color
Come…

Come pick a lovely
flower from my basket.

Find the color
or colors that pick you.

Please, don’t leave any coins—
these flowers are my
gift (for you…)

Their beauty—behold.
Their soft scent—take in.
Touch their petals—their skin.
Hold their stem—fragile, yet firm.

Tend your bouquet of flowers
even it be one or two.

Treasure the flowers
picked this day
just for you.

Inside

Inside

Inside…

there is a flame
so intense

heat surges
through my pores.

I rush outside to
meet the cold
and an invisible
blaze
surges with an 
uncontrolled
ferocity.

I do not wish
this fire quenched—

Only now
am I trusting
the ember’s receding.

The ones burning
down and at 
the same moments
setting aglow
what I have tried to 
release again and again.

The shadows—
‘ashes’…
death soon to ‘spring’
again to life…

“Unless a seed falls to the 
ground dying,
it cannot begin again ANEW.”

Inside…so very
warm

an incubator
“You are” while 
winter’s snare is outside.

A resurrection
awaits in an
empty tomb—
inside this
Soul set on fire.

Drops of Color/ Endless Pages

Drops of Color

Endless Pages

Every day another
story shared—
better yet, an abundance of
GOOD News messages.

Yes, I have read
and been immersed in these
times of difficulty
AND
I’m aware we are writing
chapters of what it IS we
are living ‘in’ presently.

The messages
‘breaking’ open through
‘hosts’ of wordless emotions,
gut wrenching facts,
heart felt feelings
ARE creating a Gospel—

A STORY that could never HOLD
the endless pages of Love transforming.

‘Behold, all things are being
made new’…
right before our eyes.

A New Song

A New Song

Arriving~~~unannounced.
The forest pulled back—
pushing aside the leafy branches.

An old fence post…
a tiny crevice…
a perfect ‘fit.’

The couple
chiseled, pecked,
then dashed into the 
woods gathering soft
nettles, tiny twigs
and dampened soil.

In the hush of night,
their feathers
caressed each other—
three delicate eggs
‘birthed.’

Taking turns,
the new oblong rubies—
never without shelter,
always swaddled in
the curl of wings.

Then, ‘Crack’
another, ‘Chip’…
Unseen to the visible eye,
the wonders of pregnancy—
life brought forth.

The pair scurried
into the trees
bringing with them morsels…
moths, crickets,
grasshoppers.

Three new voices
chimed…
open beaks, plunging
necks reaching, expanding
to taste
unfurled desires.

Days passed—
weeks went by.
A new song 
sung by three
little chicks yet to 
behold
life ‘outside’ the nest—
their hid-den cave.

Sitting quietly, I watched
the proud parents.
They would reveal their
‘catch’ to me
and scurry into
the den to feed.

I would strum
a few cords
on my guitar.
 From the fence post,
the duo would swoon
then dip into
open cupboards
of soft dewy grasses
retrieving
savory delicacies
for their young ones
delight.

I knew what 
was to come.
Yet, I could not
help playing
one chord then
another—
a small attempt
to join in 
‘the song.’

The dawn arrived.
I knew
the parents came to 
my step the night 
before.

The first one
‘flew’ out
and stood atop the 
fence.
The ‘parents’ perched
calling for the others.
The sweet sounds
made their way
into the wings of 
towering trees.

Silence overcame
me…
this time
chords plucked me
—tears gathered
—my lips parted,
but a song
was not ready to be 
sung.

I laid myself down.
My nest seemed to 
have so much more room.
 I slept hoping to
feel a pair of wings
around me.

Walking early,
I reached for my strings—
they sang to me.

I began to envision
all the wonders
the three tiny starlings
were encountering
and I Played on, and on, and on.

When I stopped,
I looked out from my perch.
There, in the branches…
the pair sang.

I knew their song—
It lives in me

AND

Three ‘new’ notes
filled the forest.
A new song
begun.

 

Drops of Color/ Paper Roses

Drops of Color
Paper Roses

I planted thee
a rose garden…

Paper, though it be.

If you close your eyes
and slowly breathe inward,

the scent of the flowers’
sweet perfume
fills your nostrils.

I remember your
garden of roses.

I would listen
from a distance
as you clipped
and trimmed.

A love song
you would hum
as the hot sun
blanketed your back

and the roses
unfolded

each and every petal.

Knowing, yes
somehow knowing,
you were
singing a ballad
for them.

You are no longer
here
and yet,

here you are in 
this paper
rose garden.

Now…
I close my yes—
teardrops of tiny
petals
lace my cheeks.

And, smiling~~~
my heart beating
softly

knowing you are
not gone.

Life and…

Life and…

Venturing outside
from my inner dwelling,
I was greeted by Life.

Together, we walked 
shoulder to shoulder.

Alright, I confess,
we held hands.

Quietly, we traversed
mile after mile.

Life began ‘projecting’ scenes.
Before my eyes,
a rolling film played itself
—slides, before my time,
flashed in rapid succession.

I looked deeply into many faces
—there were horrific times
—devastation
—no words ‘fit’ to diagram
     for they ran on, and on, and on.

No sentence structure
could piece together
paragraphs, chapters of inhumanity,
natural disasters, chaos.

Yet, Life nudged my hand,
and I picked up a pen, this pen.

But, I’m getting ahead of myself.
Life stepped with me
over mountain tops
dazzled with pristine snow.
We skipped through valleys
with colorful wild flowers
stopping their sway to stare.

Life took me to the water’s edge
and, letting go of my hand,
united me with another—Death.

I gasped, I cried.
I knew this ‘sting.’
I dropped to my knees.

Death seemed to hold me, yes,
almost lovingly.
Death stayed at my side
and wept with me
as the tide rolled itself in.

I did not move~~~

Sand slipped its way alongside
my body wrapping me like a blanket
—it was so difficult to be comforted.

The film I had been watching…
I whispered, ‘cut!’

What was before me was NOW.
How long I was held on this shore
I know not.
The tide was out.

Death brought me back to Life.
The three of us rose.

I’m ‘inside’ again
with this pen and paper.

Though at a “loss for words,”
I continue creating
because the picture now playing 
IS my Life

and I’m living with so ‘many’
in these unknown times.

I still know how to laugh.
I embrace the depth of my tears.
Fear is a friend, anger causes me to
reach out more and more.
I touch, and am touched, even 
from a distance.

Life is in ‘these’ words.
Death will come and the ink spilling
from this pen will dry.

NOW…I live
along side you
and, among the many who have become new stars
in the canopy overhead.

Hebrew Prayer…
“Let there be such oneness between us that when one cries the other tastes salt.”

 

Drops of Color/ Today

Drops of Color

Today

Jump in…
Carry your umbrella…

Splash with delight
in the largest puddle you might find.

Go ankle deep,
knee deep if you’re daring.

Laugh out loud
for the sake of nothing.

Give thanks for simple moments.

If today your heart is filled with
melancholy,
shed the tears into the puddles
beneath your feet.

Immerse yourself in the flow
AND,
maybe, just maybe,
close your umbrella
and get soaked.

YOU WILL DRY

Today…
Jump in
and splash ‘someone’
with Love.

Gentle Shepherd

Gentle Shepherd

I enter your pasture…
Where is your flock?
Are there those who follow by night?

No seats set
between the blades of grass—
the rocky crags,
the lofty mountains.

No pulpit
awaits a message

because you, lamb,
You are message itself.

I hear you
in the quiet hush—
the place where one is
unnoticed

and the Gospel
is the harmonization
of a crescent moon,
an owl’s winnow,
Orion’s belt loose in a Universe

FREE

filled, ignited with reckless abandon.

Gentle Shepherd

I do not see you remove
the artist’s easel from your
tangled hair, damp with dew.

You carry a hollow sack AND a
prism of colors begins to span
across all space.

Time is only seconds on a 
clock, but the ONLY time you keep
is the ticking of my heart
within this pasture.

—In this moment—
writing a sermon
from your lips that do not speak,
yet meet and dip the curl of
my pen around these words.

Gentle Shepherd

You are the ballad of
THIS song.

Alleluia

 

Drops of Color/ Window’s Ledge

Drops of Color

Window’s Ledge

From this window’s ledge,
the views are limitless.

She holds a gaze—
her own vantage point.
It IS what she sees
and from here
thoughts flow—
beliefs once held
drift on by.

She does not cling
to anything she 
thought she knew
for certain.

She does not hold
as a ‘possession’
this day’s unique
‘picture.’

For she realizes
it is always changing—
The images of years gone
by—memories.

Yesterday’s sun broke
through the window
and today’s drop of
rain skews the scenery
splashing the brick.

There are so many
windows to LOOK out from
and to search
ourselves ‘in’ from.

No ‘One’ window—
right or wrong…

Let us SEE the
world through
different windows

and allow other
perspectives
to give us the room
to grow.

Amen, Amen…

Amen, Amen…

Amen, Amen I say to thee.
You do not have to be
spiritual, religious, atheist
to notice persons
during these times
coming together
even at a ‘humane’ distance.

Amen, Amen I say to thee.
Figuratively, so many ordinary
‘routines’ have been upturned…
‘blood’ now pooling
from heart centers.
Persons are reaching toward each other,
families are riding bikes, playing in the parks,
walking in the woods.
Long conversations are taking place
with grandparents, our seniors,
vesting ‘time’ talking 
and there is ‘listening.’

Amen, Amen I say to thee.
The world has gotten a bit quieter—
Less traffic on the roadways,
restaurants functioning on carry-outs,
grocery stores are open but the shelves
are bare.  Many of us, a large majority,
have what we need…and then some—
while there are those who
have NOT (each day) and understand THIS moment—
We are learning the gift of the Sabbath.

Amen, Amen I say to thee.
One cannot deny the present sufferings.
Yet, why is it, kindness ‘grows
abundantly from grief, chaos, and pain?
I will not attempt to explain it and I 
certainly will not deny it.
Persons are coming together.
Oh, yes, sometimes the usual ‘stutters’
break the flow, but hope held,
as curves rise and fall AND
acts of compassion, care, service
heighten to needs still unknown and growing.

Amen, Amen I say to thee.
Our children are watching—
they are ‘hearing’ and observing
the heart beat of our world.
We, as adults, are we able to exemplify
the sacred art of ‘pausing?’
Breaking from rushing to the next constant event
in our daily schedule?
Can we light a candle
guiding our young people
no matter how much may still be invisible?
Our flame will not burn out.
AND, if it does, we will create another wick!

Amen, Amen I say to thee.
May we burn brightly enough
that our light casts itself
across this globe reaching outward
to the Sun.

Amen, Amen I say to thee.
I can almost hear that fiery ball exclaim,
“Look, they’re finally trying to imitate me.”

Drops of Color/ Tides

Drops of ColorTides

The tide in…

My feet at the water’s edge.

A ‘rock’ picked me—
I cocked my arm

firing

the rock airborne.

I heard the ‘plunge.’
The ‘rings’ it cast while 
making its way to the sea’s bottom
eventually splashed at my ankles.

Unaware of time,
I see the tide slowly recede,
and there I am 
standing in a barrage
of rocks…
some jagged, others smooth.
There were stones the size of boulders,
unmovable, unshackled.
Yet, the water
seemed to carry them with ease.

I bent low…’it’ was the 
stone I threw!

I picked it up, but then settled it back 
in its place.

In the moment,
I became the stone
carried in THIS life by infinite tides
coming in, going out.

Where I am presently…
is it my choice?

Only the tides will tell.

Braids

Braids

Dangling locks.

Tiny buds
blossom.

An invisible voice
from no-where
whispers, “Let down your hair.”

The velvet~green leaves
rise…
The flowers trumpet.

The roots hold
the soil as the satin
braids give way.

The invisible One
ascends…
Each petal, a step,
draped in pastel hues

reaching the soft
blanket
hung beneath the window.

The silent One
descends—
laying down.

A golden hush
loosens a braid
covering the 
wanderer…

‘you’re home.’

Drops of Color/ YOU

Drops of Color
You

Play a tune—
sing whatever comes to mind.

Let loose your heart~strings…
trust each note
will turn out right.

Your words
a melody—
a hymn of effortless praise.

What is ‘inside’ of you
—a concert of longing
—an opera still searching
—a rock band waiting?

Bring your yearning—
Let ‘out’ the music
that IS you.

Full

Full
Full

In silence,
perched upon a branch,

a feathered mortal
scanned the pool of water
where the ice
had not begun to sculpt.

Its eyes sought
‘any’ movement. 
Its longing for a taste
of some-thing to satisfy
an empty belly.

Holding steadily,
bathed in sun’s light
like a monk
consumed in prayer…

Ahhhh~~~
was this communion?

Was this solitary winged-being
already fed?

It was I who feasted at this site

AND so very full.

Drops of Color/ Heaven’s Entrance

Drops of Color
Heaven’s Entrance

The entrance to heaven IS
everywhere.
If you’re waiting
for the afterlife,
you are missing
the words of the One who
simply said…
“Heaven IS within you!”

The Shade

The Shade

A pull of a string—
the shade begins to rise.

The picture—clearing.
Leaves falling—
visible openings to NO where
and everywhere.

How a canvas
can appear so full
draped in the succulence
of life’s finest spreads

—then—

one swift
swoosh of the table cloth—

a barren display.

Hot savory dishes
once providing an appetite
for communion,

now choose emptiness—
hosting ‘absence’

extending an invitation—
not a formal note.

Instead,
a silent
cabin,
a loft in
naked branches—
A resting place.

Revealed, not yet…
a blossoming to come.

Waiting is the joy
in the unknown.

The shade
covers nothing

and the light
so blinding—

we are asked
to trust.

Drops of Color/Ivory Blanket

Drops of Color

Ivory Blanket

An ivory blanket—
painted and ‘perfected.’

Between—slender trunks
living beside a 
pearl black stream.

The only sound—
a snow-flake
rolling off the edge…

plunging into
the shivering water.

The white 
blanket
seems to rise

attempting to cover itself
so ‘no-thing’ will fall.

But, fall it will
and, the 
sound created,
if only a hush,

melts its way down the water.

Balance

Balance

Sails unfurled—
Like over-sized blankets,
they dangled from an invisible line.

Moving in the direction
of the wind’s speed,
a vessel ‘held’
before
enormous beams
strewn north and south…

a single line was painted
east and west.

The bridge
carried over the sea.

From the right,
the gaze was infinite.

From the left,
an utterly distinct view.

Both angles revealed
something clearly ‘different.’

Both ends spoke a ‘truth’
from a ‘fixed’ point.

Differing views held this 
structure’s balance.

SomeHOW…
meeting in the middle
set the balance.

One side
did not speak to the other
reciting, “You’re NOT seeing correctly.”
No demeaning remarks hurled.

The bridge stood
encompassed from
polar, opposite ends

—STANDING—

So others could make
their way in both directions.

The sails caught
a gust
and, speaking for
the wind,

it whispered,
“LET’S sail under.”

So many ways to travel

Can we find the 
balance to bridge
the divining gaps?

Drops of Color/ She Ran

Drops of Color

She Ran

She ran…
then she picked up her pace.
The sounds of bloodhounds in the distance
—in pursuit.
She quickened her strides
—they were after her.

There was no path—
briers covered her garments
branches slashed her ankles.
At night, mosquitoes would draw
her blood
still~~~She ran.

In the evening,
the North star pointed the way.
By day, she covered the banks
along side the river.

She fell to her knees
when her captors drew near…
“Show me God”…”You brought me this far.”
She walked into the water…
She never swam a stroke in her life.

The waters rose
—to her knees
—to her hips
—to her shoulders.

She trusted
and she crossed.

The visions she had—
Were they from the blows to her head
She ‘saw’ what was yet to come—
She was haunted by the memories of her
family being carried off, sold…
Why?  Because of the color of their
skin?

She ran…
making her way to freedom.
BUT, she was shackled within
knowing her people were enslaved.

Back she went…
When she was told she should NOT
because it was too dangerous,
she refused to listen.

She listened to the voice speaking to her…
Her God said, “Go, FREE my people.”

She fled ‘back’ into
a villainous landscape
where persons used/misused the Scriptures
to ‘possess’ lives.
Her God would not hold ‘kin’ to that~~~
THAT way would NOT lead ALL to the 
Promised Land.

Her God led all people, all things,
all seasons to lands flowing
with Milk & Honey.

Yet, history has a way of
repeating itself.

We are all One…
MANY believe this true.

Yet,
there are still systems at work
religions intertwined
‘laying’ down the voice of
the gods they see themselves to be.

The same voices that passed
(Fugitive Slave Act, 1850)
the law allowing slave owners to return
and reclaim their run-away property.

Again—she ran.
Others ran beside her.
She went back for the sake of OTHERS…
For the freedom of others…
this was her ONLY reason…
her greatest gain.

Segregated still—
she gathered her people like a 
mother hen.

She led them into battle,
to fight for freedom.

Violence was NOT her nature—
The scars of slavery, like roots,
thread through her people’s skin.
She would NOT allow tomorrow’s
children and their children
to carry those stripes.

Harriet—
in which direction do we run
today?

Spirit calling Harriet—
lead the way
Woman, daughter, sister of God.